1. Rick n Morty
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    Rick n Morty Active Member

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    Apologies

    Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by Rick n Morty, Sep 23, 2016.

    Not sure which subforum this goes on. If this is the wrong one, please move it to the correct one. Anyway...

    I've caused a lot of trouble on this forum by randomly having huge meltdowns in the middle of threads. And I'm really sorry about that. I bet a lot of people are really annoyed by my presence because of it, and I'm surprised the mods haven't banned me yet.

    Anyways, I probably should've mentioned this before, but I suffer from anxiety, and I get stressed and frustrated really easily. Especially when it comes to coming up with plot ideas. (Note that I picture the majority of my ideas as movies, not books.)

    See, there's a lot about characterization that I still don't understand. Same with originality. (I'm still really upset about the Zootopia thread.) And sometimes people's attempts at criticism just frustrate me more, because I can't figure out what would make them happy. In these cases, instead of learning to write, I end up learning how to hate to write.

    Adding to the confusion is the fact that, as I pointed out in this thread, there are many tropes that people tell me not to use, but other well-received works have used, thus contradicting their points. (And some of them, like The Book of Life and The Loud House, are really recent, so the "this was made before that became cliche" excuse doesn't apply to them.)

    Of course, sometimes people tell me that different audiences have different tastes, and there is no secret ingredient to writing a good story. And I find that very helpful advice. I've decided that maybe I should write what I like, and not what other people like.

    A lot of my ideas come from me thinking about the kind of movie that I would like to see. (Like a Disney-style film set in Malaysia.) Or the kind of book I would like to read. (Like a speculative encyclopedia of what may have lived on Mars when it had an ocean.) Or the kind of TV show I would like to watch. (Like a cartoon series that satirizes fandoms while taking cues from classic cartoons like the Looney Tunes.) Or the kind of video game I would like to play. (Like a game where you evolve through the time periods from the Cambrian to the Quaternary and encounter all the amazing creatures from those time periods.)

    Once again, I'm sorry for all the meltdowns. I decided from now on that instead of getting upset, I'll bring up examples of works that used those tropes but were still well-received.

    Is everything cool?
     
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2016
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  2. Lea`Brooks
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    Lea`Brooks Contributing Member Contributor

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    First, this is most definitely in the wrong subforum. :p But it's cool. It'll get moved accordingly.

    Second, as a fellow anxiety sufferer, I suggest you visit this thread . It can be very helpful to discuss your feelings with those of us who can relate.

    Third, I think a lot of people start off writing constantly worrying about the "right" and "wrong" way to do it. But as you've come to realize, there is no prefect way. Some people love cliches, other people hate them. Some people love originality, other people wish you'd stick to the classics. You're never going to please 100% of people 100% of the time. Hell, you'll likely never please 100% of people. But you can please yourself. And that's really all that matters, right?

    And finally, I wouldn't worry too much about the drama. Like you said, you haven't been banned. Maybe you ruffled a few feathers, but who hasn't? I cussed out a member once, got an infraction, and now we're buds. Shit happens. No one's perfect. So try not to stress over it too much. :)
     
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  3. Cave Troll
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    Cave Troll Bite the bullet, do your own thing. Contributor

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    I will forgive you even though I haven't the faintest clue as to what threads you are referring to have had meltdowns in.
    I had one really bad one once, and I didn't apologize for it as the other was being deliberately provocative. I got some
    points against me as a result for 'harsh language' and a few other things. But I doubt you have been as bad as I.

    I to have anxiety and it is hard to keep reined in all the time, I understand this all to well. You just need to tell yourself
    they are simply trying to help, and it is not personal. I have gotten all sorts of criticism of my own writings that has been
    called cliche, but it is unavoidable. As long as you are happy with what you have on the page, and done all you can to edit
    it up to a better standard than a rough draft, you will be good.

    TakeThis.jpg It looks cute and cuddly, but it is anything but. :supergrin:
     
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  4. Rick n Morty
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    Rick n Morty Active Member

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    I had a feeling this was. But I couldn't figure out which one would be the correct one.

    A good example of an work that's unoriginal, but still good, is a recent comic strip I really like called Phoebe and Her Unicorn. It's been described by many as a gender-flipped Calvin and Hobbes. However, there are some differences (for instance, Marigold can be seen by others, unlike Hobbes). Oddly enough, the C&H similarities are the reason why I got into the strip in the first place. I'm a huge C&H fan, and I thought it was cool to see a recent comic strip that was similar to it, but still felt like a separate product.
     
  5. 123456789
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    123456789 Contributing Member Contributor

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    I'll tell you what I'm sick of. This obsession with "ideas" that invariably include references to movies, t.v shows, cartoons, and video games. Look, it's cool to fantasize. Lots of people are doing it. It has about as much relevance to writing as does eating. The idea does not matter.* Muse or paint by numbers, there are certain elements that go into a novel that make the reader's experience. This is what you should be focusing on, if it's writing you're interested in, and not sitting on the couch cooking up more fantasies.


    *An idea will not sell itself. You, the writer, will have to work very hard to get other people to read your idea.
     
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2016
  6. jannert
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    jannert Contributing Member Supporter Contributor

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    Well, I can't say I've ever noticed any meltdowns from you, so either we're not participating in the same threads OR you've not been obnoxious enough. :) Don't worry. Lots of people have meltdowns on the forum. Some do, because—like yourself—they have anxiety issues or other issues related to mental health. Do what @Lea`Brooks suggested and visit the thread she linked. It's a great place to let off steam and to learn how others with similar issues are feeling.

    The thing about a meltdown is to refrain from getting personal when people don't agree with you or start pushing your buttons, no matter how angry you feel. Don't call anybody else names or put words in their mouth. If you feel angry, go away and write the angry response in your wordprocessor. Wait a few hours. If you still think you want to say what you've said, then copy/paste it into a comment and THEN post it. Don't forget you can also edit and/or delete any posts you have made, so if you think you've spouted off unreasonably, then just delete or edit the comment—preferably before anybody else has responded, so the thread's direction doesn't get derailed.

    As a last resort, there is always an heartfelt apology. That usually goes down well. We all say things we don't mean sometimes.

    And yes, there are occasional people on the forum who seem bent on ruffling feathers. Ignore them. They don't tend to last very long around here, so sit back, munch the popcorn, and wait for them to get banned. :pop:I don't mean make a big deal/drama out of ignoring them. Just don't respond to their posts. If they don't get the reaction they're looking for, they'll move on. The old 'don't feed the trolls' idea. Even if they're not actually trolls, but simply unpleasant, arrogant, aggressive, or slyly provocative fellow writers. Just don't give them any ammunition. Learn when to back off, and start polishing your halo! :angle:.
     
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2016
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  7. Link the Writer
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    Link the Writer Flipping Out For A Good Story. Contributor

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    We're cool, bro. :) We're cool.

    If it's of any comfort, half of my ideas that I thought were original (i.e., the fantasy-mystery with the blind MC) had, in fact, already been done before. So take that load off your shoulders. As a Roman philosopher/emperor once wrote in his private diary, no one's asking you to be the next Plato (or in your case, the next Stanley Kubrick.) They just want a good book. :D
     
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  8. Rick n Morty
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    Rick n Morty Active Member

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    Sorry for the late reply, but here's another thread that left me frustrated.

    One of my film ideas takes place in an alternate timeline where the Cretaceous mass extinction never happened and dinosaurs became sapient. The secondary villain is a German-accented Quetzalcoatlus named General Azdark, and one of his minions is a Brazilian-accented Tapejara named Private Bobo, who's a friendly comic relief who likes to sing and dance to Samba music.

    People complained about how stereotypical these characters were, and I spent the whole thread stressing myself trying to think of a justification beyond "it's fun and interesting". (I got the idea because Quetzalcoatlus and its relatives have crests that somewhat resemble German military caps, and Tapejara is a Brazilian pterosaur species.) Someone even mocked me by sarcastically telling me to add a stereotypically gay dinosaur character. (Seriously?)

    Eventually, I pointed out that a lot of Disney comic relief characters have stereotypical accents (like Sebastian from The Little Mermaid, Lumiere from Beauty and the Beast, and Ray from The Princess and the Frog), and no one complains about them. So why couldn't Private Bobo be like those characters? (Fun fact: Bobo was based a lot on both Jose Carioca and Panchito Pistoles from The Three Caballeros, who seem to be really popular characters despite being stereotypically Brazilian and Mexican, respectively. And yes, they were created in the 40's, but as far as I know, no one sees them as products of their time like the black crows from Dumbo.) And a lot of Disney villains are British for no reason, so why not make a German villain?

    Also really confusing is the aforementioned Nickelodeon cartoon The Loud House. All of Lincoln's sisters are common stereotypes we've seen in hundreds of cartoons (creepy goth girl, science nerd with glasses and a lisp, ditzy teen, bitchy teen, polar opposite tomboy and girly-girl twins, comedian who tells lame jokes, hot-blooded rocker, sports-loving jock with bad hygiene), but people seem to really like that show. (And it's a recent series, so no "this was before those became cliche" excuse.) But when MY work has stereotypes, THAT'S when people complain.
     
  9. Link the Writer
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    Link the Writer Flipping Out For A Good Story. Contributor

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    Here's my advice: forget that and write those characters. Some might complain, others won't care. Look at The Big Bang Theory for crying out loud! It's chock full of stereotypes:

    Sheldon is the classic "Asperger nerd with social ineptitude"
    Howard is the dork nerd
    That other guy is the "Only-Sane-Man" nerd
    Raj is the token minority nerd (he's also the only non-white character on the show)
    Penny is the bitchy nerd
    Amy is the sullen, quiet nerd
    Bernadette is the ditzy nerd who sounds like she inhales helium on a regular basis

    It's basically your generic sit-com, but with science and nerd culture coating.

    Some complain, others don't care. My point is that people have different opinions on a particular piece. Just write it and don't worry about how stereotypical some might find it.
     
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  10. izzybot
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    izzybot Human Disaster Contributor

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    You're taking this far too personally. People who are going to complain about tropes/stereotypes in your work are going to complain about it in other work too. The only difference is that you see %100 of the opinions and criticisms of your work, and maybe %2 of the opinions and criticism of other works.

    If tropes and stereotypes are what you want to write, then write them. It's not a witch hunt. You're not being singled out. If you believe in what you're writing, then our opinions don't matter.
     
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  11. Rick n Morty
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    Rick n Morty Active Member

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    So, what you're saying is The Book of Life and The Loud House are NOT well-liked works?
     
  12. izzybot
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    izzybot Human Disaster Contributor

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    No. I'm saying there's no doubt they have detractors. Again, you can't possibly be exposed to all of the available public opinions of them - I'm sure if you googled "[name] bad reviews / criticism" or something like that, you'd find people who didn't like them. When it comes to your own work, you see all of the 'bad reviews'.

    There are other factors to the overall popularity, too - I remember seeing trailers for The Book of Life and thinking the characters designs and animation were gorgeous, and it'd probably be lovely to watch even if the story was crap (I never saw it, so I don't know if the story was good or not, but whatever).

    All anyone knows about your work is the general idea of the story, not how it's actually written or presented. If you described one of my favorite movies to me in terms of nothing but what tropes it'd fulfill, I'd probably think it sounded pretty cliche too, because tropes only becomes tropes by being used to the point of instant recognition.
     
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  13. Link the Writer
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    Link the Writer Flipping Out For A Good Story. Contributor

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    Listening to us, you are not! Look at Star Wars and Harry Potter. If you break them down into their basic tropes, they're almost exactly the same! Now let's take one of them and put them in a fictional galaxy. Now let's take the magical group of people and call them Jedi, and their magic is the Force. Let's take the big bad guy and make him the hero's father and the Prequels will cover his downfall. Let's make the elderly mentor an aged, dyslexic alien. Oh, and the bigger bad guy is the evil Emperor who is...pretty much evil to the core. No tragic backstory for this guy. Nope, he's super, duper evil and there's no redeeming qualities for him.

    You'd be surprised to know that not everyone likes Star Wars or Harry Potter -- and I'm not talking about the fanatics convinced that the latter teaches young children satanism. One of our own, Lemex, didn't particularly like Harry Potter.
     

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