1. MowsysWrath
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    MowsysWrath Member

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    An idea.. too stupid?

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by MowsysWrath, Dec 10, 2007.

    Basically, my whole idea was a couple of high school kids getting captured, tranquilized and experimented on. With the experiments, they were granted some very good perks to do with the elements, like being able to control wind direction and making razor sharp winds (Literally) and creating ice, fire, water, ect..

    But that's not where I want to start it. I want to start it 1,000 years later, with some of them looking like they're only in their early 20's and the rest dead.

    So uh... What I'm asking is, is this idea stupid?

    Don't steal it if it IS good <_<
     
  2. Good_writer
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    Good_writer Banned

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    MowsysWrath, every idea is good if written nicely. If you writing style is good, then people will be drawn into the story. And if it isn't, then people won't care if the plot is good or not.
    But as you're asking about your plot specifically, i'd say that it is a good idea ( though i've read many books based on the same idea).
     
  3. Axis
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    Axis Member

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    *Starts taking notes*

    No, that sounds like a terrible idea ... Stay away from that idea ...

    *continues scribbling furiously*

    1,000 years you said. Right. I think I've got all that now.

    In all seriousness, that does sound like a solid idea. Some superhero stuff, mixed with a bit of SF and maybe a few horror scenes when you depict the kidnapping and experimentation.

    Make sure everything is properly motivated. Who is doing the experiments? Why? What benefit did they predict? Was the result what they expected, and if so, are the Superheroes still working for that organisation? Why were these kids chosen?

    Stephen King does something like that with Firestarter, so it might not hurt to have a look at that. Uni students volunteer for to undertake some tests of an experimental drug. It drives some of them crazy, and gives others psychic powers. Two of them have a child and she can start fires with her mind.

    Immortality is a tough tool to work with in my opinion, because it's very difficult to predict the mental effects of sustained life. Does it drive some of the kids crazy? Do they end up going to war with each other? Do they stay in touch for the full 1,000 years or drift apart, then get drawn back together when they realise one of them has gone nutso and has started calling down cyclones on Las Vegas to cover a gambling debt yadda yadda yadda?

    Lots if opportunity for a really good story there. With the success of Heroes on TV I would expect a lot of these types of stories to be coming out shortly. Go for it.
     
  4. Kiza
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    Kiza Member

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    Sounds like a great idea to me, but like Good writer said only if you write it well. Also, it's got a fairly similar concept to the Maximum Drive books by James Patterson. The main characters in that book are teenagers and have superpowers as well.(sort of)
     
  5. B-Gas
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    Actually, to be frank, it sounds a bit like captain planet without captain planet...

    I think a bit more information is needed before the idea can be usefully critiqued. How are you planning to pull off immortality? How, in real terms, did they acquire their powers- it doesn't matter if it's a Phlebotinum (google it) power, it just has to be consistent. And, most importantly, Why do they have these powers? Who are they 'up against', what are they fighting for, and how can you make it new and different?

    It's important to remember that fire isn't an actual 'thing'. It's a place where stuff changes from solid to gas, in basic terms. If you have experiments, you've got to have internal logic. Give us some more details!
     
  6. Good_writer
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    Good_writer Banned

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    The idea is more like The Supernaturalist by Eoin Colfer in which teenagers live in an orphanage where they are experimented on and they get superpowers.
     
  7. Kiza
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    Kiza Member

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    I guess it's like that too. But don't be discouraged MowsysWrath just because there are books like that out there. If you write it originally enough it'll be fine. :)
     
  8. Good_writer
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    Good_writer Banned

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    Yeah, there are lots of ways in which you can make your story unique. But if you sit down to think of the plot, i can guarentee that it won't get you anywhere. What you have to do is write. Just start writing the novel, and i can assure you that good ideas will come to you. It happens to me all the time.
    Anyway, good luck with your novel.
     
  9. MowsysWrath
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    MowsysWrath Member

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    Hah. Thanks everyone.

    I'll get to work... after I finish my homework (HATE!!!)
     
  10. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Another similar approach, conceptually anyway, would be Stephen King's Firestarter.
     
  11. Heather Louise
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    Mowsys, it is not the idea so much where writing is concerened, but how well the story is wrote. Ok, so it does not sound like something that I would personally pick up if it were on a shelf but I am sure many many people would love the sound of it. Just go for it, if you find that half way through it sounds stupid, get rid of it. Honestly tough, we have stories about almost everything, nothing is too far fetched anymore.
    Heather
     
  12. DivineLemon
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    DivineLemon Member

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    Well your story sounds like something written by James Patterson (ex. Maximum Ride Series).

    I do believe if you have enough detail and make this story unique, with new concepts that have never been heard or seen before, it could be a really good story.
     
  13. Axis
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    I think I've already said that. :)
     
  14. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Sorry Axis, I missed that.
    :)
     
  15. Axis
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    Axis Member

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    Just having a dig, mate. Don't worry about it.
     
  16. Zetta
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    Zetta Member

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    You mean Maximum Ride? :p Lol, sorry, but I love those books, and I couldn't help but correct you. I wanted to write something along those lines as well, but the success of Heroes and the Max Ride books kind of threw me off. I don't wanna be a copy cat, and I'm pretty dubious about my writing abilities, anyway. They pale in comparison to Mr. Patterson's!

    However, now to preach what I do not practice. I don't think it matters if something's been done before; if it's your brainchild, it'll be original. Yours. As long as you write it well (as everybody else has already said), it'll be successful. And if it makes it and you get it published, you have a confirmed buyer here in me.
     
  17. Myst
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    Myst Active Member

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    Yes I know it's a long post

    Hmmmm.

    Not sure if anyone else notices this but the teenager/experiments/elemental powers thing is a very commonly roleplayed theme, though it fails to thrive in books. (Max Ride is kinda similar as far as the teenagers and experiments go but if the experiments gave elemental powers instead of flight there is a whole different level to explore, especially with the extended lifespan idea. I havent read Stephen King's Firestarter though, so I can't comment on that.)

    Anyway, the reason why this theme is so commonly Roleplayed is because it's fast SF entertainment. Teenagers get powers, bam, no questions asked. Not much development is needed. And elements are easy to stick to and write about. The fire-wielder stays with his fire and the wind guy isn't gonna start pulling any ice out of his pockets. It's quick-paced, it's accessible, but it doesn't last.

    To port this concept for the medium of the book, effort needs to be put in. So I'm going to try to throw out some ideas for you to flesh out: What's the reason for the experiments that gave them their powers? Who were the people behind it? How did these teenager's families react (if they had any?) Exactly how do/did their powers/the experiments work? (I can imagine this would be tough to explain realistically, but a decent idea is that the experiment enabled them to like, control specific particles or something. Then you could impose some limit to the characters' powers. It'd make more sense if they're able to manipulate their respective element, but can't just suddenly conjure it. You can't have a guy snap his fingers and have an iceberg pop up on the street. Then maybe the characters with more restrictions (i.e. waterbender) always carries around some of their element with them, or stay close to a place of which their element is abundant, whereas like an earthshifter or an air controller can just do their thing wherever.)

    The characters need personality, too. A fantasy/sci-fi book flies farther if it's grounded well in realism. If these teenagers were real people, not all of them would embrace the power. Maybe some would choose to live a normal life? Maybe some go out and abuse their power? (thus villians) Become a vigilante? Join the armed forces? You can experiment with the experiments. =P (sorry for tripping the bad pun alert there)

    The fast-forward thing could be good, but don't overdo it. 1000 years? Do you have some specific reason for that? If not, then a shorter time frame would be better, 100, 85 or even like 30 or 50 years later. It would be good if only a few of them kept touch (not all are going to get along, right?) but when there's something happening, like the one who went bad going on a rampage or whatever, they've no choice to get back together.

    You have to explain this immortality thing. How does elemental bending= immortality? There has to be a semi-plausible reason. By the way, another random thought here: after decades of quiet living the elementals find that more and more of them are dying recently, and the intervals between deaths shorter after each one. Their so-called immortality is strangely and suddenly being questioned, and while all this is happening, the're a stray making trouble. Heck, you could even introduce offspring of two elemental-wielders which therefore have control over two elements.

    Don't ever write sloppily. Read what've you've done and revise it until you're satisfied. Don't be afraid to take some pages to describe something in detail, but also of course don't reveal too much too fast. Keep a good sense of pace. There are times where you might not want to take the time to painstakingly colour in the surfaces of your novel, but if you do it right, the words will form a great story. Before you start on a book, though, you could try writing short stories with the themes and characters that you plan to use later on. Become comfortable in your narrative voice. It's really not fun when you rush into trying to write a long story unprepared, and look back after you've finished the first few chapters and realize that it's badly designed.

    So. This could be a great story. In fact, almost anything can be a great story. It's up to you how it's going to turn out.
     
  18. MowsysWrath
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    Myst, I like your input but...

    1. It can last. The element powers are an interesting thing to toy with if you know what you're doing. (I wrote a story like this before, but I was a ****ty writer then)
    2. Immortality and control of an element doesn't have to link, it's going to be a mess-up by the guys who experimented on the people
    3. It goes ahead 1,000 years because I want it to link with my other stories of weird **** so the characters from each can meet, bump on the street, or notice actions of the others in news and such.
    4. I have a kinda medieval futuristic setting, back to bladed weapons and no vehicles but some remnants of the present day (I haven't really figured out how to explain that part yet)

    Thanks for your help, I'll be sure to take most, if not all, of your advice into mind.
     
  19. Myst
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    Myst Active Member

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    I suppose you could say there was a huge technological shutdown. Like, as the years passed, the humans began taking up so much energy and resources that it came to a point where their major cities (very tech-based now) couldn't sustain themselves properly. It would be interesting if in the aftermath a government rose up that was very anti-machinery, thus also making it easier to explain why even things like vehicles was made away with.

    Perhaps you can have the people that originally experimented on the teenagers to actually have terrorist intents, and these same people released some kind of virus that ate away technology. =/

    Personally though I think that although you will be staying away from large-scale "present day" things like vehicles and computers you can keep things like guns and mobile phones.
     
  20. MowsysWrath
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    Well, they still have a bit of technology, like cloaking and cloak-busting (small devices that disrupt the cloaks) but... I dunno.

    And the whole experiment was an attempt at becoming rich by selling the powers, but first they needed it to work. That's what I was thinking, at least.
     
  21. Myst
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    Myst Active Member

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    Well, conceptualizing can only go so far. Like I said before I think you should start some early drafts, and mold the story as you go along. Conceptualizing tends to leave you certain seperate ideas and feelings of how you want certain aspects (like how you have this idea for cloaks and cloak-busting) It's all good, but a bunch of scattered ideas don't work unless you can tie them together. That's why drafting may help you sort out your plans. (Just a suggestion, course)

    Do you mean that they wanted to sell the powers to the public? Or like the military? I think the latter would be more logical?

    Feel free to post up any consequent products here at WF.org in the respective section, too. =D (I think there's a Novel board or something..)
     
  22. MowsysWrath
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    I already have the universe itself set up, I created it with a bunch of other stories. I'm just putting these characters in this universe while still linking my old story to it. And I did mean to the military, or they would just fix themselves up with it and take over other corporations like that.

    I'm not 100% sure on my ideas and I'm writing a draft right now.
     
  23. Myst
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    Myst Active Member

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    Okay, and if you do decide to put it up here I'll be sure to give it a read ;D
     

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