1. MoonWriter67
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    MoonWriter67 Member

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    Apocalypse plot idea - Is it worth a try?

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by MoonWriter67, Jan 25, 2010.

    I've been scrapping all of my previous plot ideas but I've come up with a new idea of an apocalypse which mixes together caveman style living with remnants of present day, like remains of houses and guns. People must scavenge to survive, but as soon as the sun sets the night watchers (humans infected by desease which makes them wild and mad, who are reppeled by fire), come out from under the ground. The lanscape is a barren desert were frequent wildfires destroy remaining trees. In other places such as mountains, it is snowy, grim and cold. The story follows a small group of five survivors who must journey through the land in search of a fabled colony of humans. They must fight freak weather, natural disasters, desease, and ofcourse, the night watchers as they journey to the safe heaven.

    Is this plot worth it?
     
  2. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    been done and overdone, especially in the movies... however, that doesn't mean you can't find a way to do it again, but in a different enough way to make it work...

    no one can tell you if it's worth doing... only you can decide that... and no one can tell you if it'll work, till they can read the finished product... ideas are valueless, till they're turned into something usable...
     
  3. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    A story concept means nothing. I can tell you now, it has been done before. What matters is how you write it, the characterization, the flow, the imagery, all of it.

    There's no benefit in asking what other people think of the concept! They'll either say,"Sounds great," or, "it sounds like a ripoff of..."

    If the idea stirs you, write it. Then ask people what they think of the final story. After they tell you what they don't like about it, revise it, usually several times, until you're happy with it or until you throw up your hands and say the hell with it.

    Please read this thread about What is Plot Creation and Development?
     
  4. lvlr
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    lvlr Member

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    A way to make it work...


    Notice what you just described IS NOT a plot! It's a world in which you can put a plot. That would make it interesting. I'd love to read about a drug dealer living in this world maybe still addicted to drugs. Or a police officer trying to organize the people so he can create a job similar to his old one as a new world sheriff. Or a thief trying to pull of a massive heist in this world; maybe he could use the fact that by day there are limited guards on whatever he's trying to steal because the guards believe it's the madmen who would steal it.
     
  5. Peerie Pict
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    Peerie Pict Contributing Member Contributor

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    Your concept sounds pretty familiar but a mixture of the post-apocalypse with the zombie genre hasn't really been done to death as far as I am aware.

    As the others have said, your ability to create believable characters, depth and suspense is more important than the ovearching genre/plot.

    As long as people are obsessed with Armageddon and the 4 Riders of the Apocalypse, there will always be an appetite for novels o f this genre. You should definitely go for it.

    @lvlr - the idea of people trying to create an old world sense of law and order in the post apocalypse is an excellent idea!
     
  6. HorusEye
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    HorusEye Contributing Member Contributor

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    It has. It's as common in computer games as vampires are in teen novels. But that doesn't mean a good writer couldn't revive it. So far there's no actual plot, but maybe adding one that is really unique for the genre could do the trick.
     
  7. Neo
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    Zombie apocalypses are as common as muck..

    ...however, they are also very popular, and that's why they continue to be made.

    Someone says, "I've made a romantic comedy with Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks" and the world sighs.
    Someone else says, "I've made a post-apocalyptic movie about zombies" and-
    ...sorry, I'm, late for the cinema ;)
     
  8. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Whether it has been done befoire is irrelevant. Pretty much everything has been "done before." Instead, concentrate on what YOU can bring to the story idea.

    If a story idea pops up again and again, it's because at least one of the writers did it well enough to capture people's attention.

    Get creative with the story, and don't bother asking for opinions until your story is complete.
     
  9. Unit7
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    Unit7 Contributing Member Contributor

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    Reminds me of a South Park episode. Butters becomes obsessed without doing The Simpson in creativity only to find out each time that the Simpsons did it already. Kind of a nice lesson at the end that sorta applies to writers. :p
     
  10. Daniel Michael Morgan
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    Daniel Michael Morgan New Member

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    I like these kinds of stories. Don't worry so much about whether or not it's been done before (how many books out there look like a rehash of Dune?). I think it would serve you well to read Margaret Atwood's Oryx and Crake, and her new book, Year of the Flood.
     
  11. Rei
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    Rei Contributing Member Contributor

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    If you think it's worth trying, it is.
     
  12. coldu
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    coldu Member

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    This has been done many times....but that is becasue it can be. "It's the way you tell them," as someone once said. This would work if you put a new spin on it. For example you could tell this story not from the one who lives above ground but from the perspective of the beast who lives below it. The thing is to think in opposites. If you choose a middle-aged man for a key chracter think about using a adloscent female. If you think he needs be to survive...then make him feeble and unfit. A story is always more than about the basic theme. Think about the key characters personal goals.
     
  13. tcol4417
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    tcol4417 Member

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    There's no such thing as a genre that's been done to death - just individual people who manage to murder it before putting it on display.

    "Post-apocalypse" has become a fantastically ubiquitous term because the uniqueness of your story depends on the past and future as well as the present. As far as what you've presented goes though, you're just pitching the I Am Legend movie to us.

    Cogito's right - a premise as broad and undefined as that means nothing.

    Timmy went out into the barren wasteland and shot a rat before eating it and got back indoors before sunset to hide from the scary people.

    What you've given us is a setting, but that's like giving someone a hub cap and asking what they think of your car. You've taken a photo and asked us what we think of the movie.

    We describe settings, but we write stories.
     

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