1. Ocinatu
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    Ocinatu New Member

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    Does this seem like an interesting plot?

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Ocinatu, Aug 29, 2013.

    I'm writing a novel. Bascially, it's about four friends that are travelling around together and bump into an old Yoruba drum that the rumour says is cursed. Their goal in the story is to get rid of this curse, because it affects some of them and makes things very dangerous by the end.

    The setting is mainly going to be on a Greek island. There are going to be a few different charachters involved;
    a greek woman, who is the one buying this drum. A hippie/gipsy woman from Austria, a little bit crazy and very untraditional (dreadlocks etc) who is the one that picks up this drum for her Greek friend. Then I have a Scottish street musician, an African guy from Tanzania, an Australian girl and another Scottish girl, plus a British psychic medium from London and his colleague, who is a crazy Haitian voodoo / witchdoctor. Some different, and original people, I know. :)

    The idea about this cursed drum is that it originally belonged to the Yoruba people in Nigeria, but was stolen by some white intruders in the 1800's sometime and brought to Europe. The drum was being used by the Yoruba people for religious rituals which actually involved sacrificing humans. When the drum was stolen, the Yorubas put a curse to the drum, so that if you start playing on it, it gradually possesses your mind and makes you do things that you never normally would do. The last owner of the cursed drum became mentally ill from playing on it, and is now stuck in a mental hospital because he sacrificed his wife.
    The drum also has hundreds of spirits stuck to it, the spirits of all the people that were sacrificed back in the old times. The British psychic medium and the Haitian witch-doctor are trying to get rid of the curse in the drum, but are having a lot of trouble since the curse is very strong and all these spirits are kind of attached to it.

    Some of the friends start to play on the drum, and they gradually become addicted to playing it and affected by the drum's curse. The British medium gets seriously ill after having been in touch with the drum, but the haitian voodoo man cures him. Gradually things develop more and more seriously, and in the end the group of people split, so that some of them have to fight for their lives against the people who are affected by the curse. I am not totally sure of how the final battle in the story is going to happen, but in the end the curse is removed and I think the drum is taken back to Nigeria, where it belongs.

    So, does this seem like a story you would find exciting to read? Any tips or comments?
     
  2. Thomas Kitchen
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    Thomas Kitchen Proofreader in the Making Contributor

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    Seems okay to me, but remember (as almost everyone replying to this thread will soon say) that the storyline doesn't necessarily matter - a great writer can make the most dull idea extremely interesting, mainly because they write it in a style that's fun, or tense, or whatever. As Cogito always says, if you want to write the story, then write it! You'll never know if it's interesting or not until you do. :)
     
  3. chicagoliz
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    chicagoliz Contributing Member Contributor

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    It sounds as good as any other plot. Write it well and readers will like it. Develop your characters, and go write it. (And I mean develop your characters through writing them.)
     
  4. EmmaWrite
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    EmmaWrite Member

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    Sounds interesting to me. Your characters sound like they will be key in this story, so pay attention to their development.
     
  5. Ocinatu
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    Ocinatu New Member

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    Thanks for your advice people! :) I agree that the charachter development should be my focus. That's actually the most interesting part as well I think. I will try to read up on how to make interesting characthers.. and I hope that I am a good enough writer to make this story fun to read. At least the story sounds interesting to me! I'm having a lot of fun putting it toghether.
     
  6. jannert
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    jannert Contributing Member Supporter Contributor

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    I presume there will be more to this plot than just each character being badly affected by contact with the cursed drum. That's more a story problem than it is a plot. The plot comes when somebody tries to solve the story problem.

    Somebody needs to figure out why folk are dropping like flies, and decide to do something about it. This is where your plot lies. Somebody needs to turn this situation around.

    I think you've certainly got a lot going for you, in terms of story setup, location, etc. I suppose you're already doing research about setting, history of the drum and the Yoruba people. Do as much research as you can, and I'm sure new ideas will occur to you as the 'facts' pile up.

    I would urge you to develop your interesting character 'types' into individual people, and avoid stereotyping them, though. Maybe play a few of them against type, just for fun.

    As you've sketched it out, the story premise looks intriguing so far, and I will certainly look forward to reading it. Beats angsty vampires and demons lurking in high school basements, that's for sure! At least in MY head.
     
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2013
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  7. Randomcityify
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    Randomcityify New Member

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    Sounds really interesting. Seeing as the characters are quite important you may be able to have a plot twist? It would be edgy and exhilarating. Maybe some romance and betrayal? (Cliche, I know but it may work with your story?) As long as you write it well, it'll be brilliant!
     
  8. KaTrian
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    KaTrian A foolish little beast. Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Sounds cool! :)
    I agree, pay attention to the character development, you have so many you have a lot of room for fun dialogue etc.
    Hippies with dreadlocks are such a sweet cliché and totally not untraditional. However, a Gypsy with dreadlocks sounds interesting. Read on the Romani people of Austria/Europe for this character. In my country you don’t see gypsy hippies ‘cause the Romani have fairly traditional stress codes for their women.
    Also note that her English may be broken.
     
  9. Ocinatu
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    Ocinatu New Member

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    Yes, I have sort of figured out a little plot twist to come in the end of the story.. :) But still the actual ending of the story is a bit uncertain to me, I have a lot of thinking to do there. I guess it will become clearer as I get closer to the end. And yes, I have plans to add a little bit of romance actually, between the English medium and the Greek woman. :) But it will all end with a conflict between the two of them (I think) because he is going to accidentally destroy all the furniture in her house while battling with some evil spirit... :D

    Ok, that's an interesting thought. My idea was actually that this English medium is half Romani, or has relatives in Romania. Because I plan to take the characters on a journey to Transilvania as a part of the story. But yes, maybe I should make this dreadlock woman a gypsy as well. I don't know, I'll have to do some research on that first.

    Thanks for the tips and comments guys! It's nice with some other points of view than my own sometimes!
     
  10. Indivisible
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    Indivisible Member

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    I personally like it. It's different, and different for the most part is engaging. If you want my honest opinion, you have more of the concept of the story than the plot. You do have some elements of the plot there, but the plot is essentially carried by your characters, and I think once you flesh them out you'll have more comprehensive idea. I agree with Tennart, he phrased better than I could.
     
  11. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    A story concept means nothing. What matters is how you write it: the characterization, the flow, the imagery, all of it.

    There's absolutely 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 What is Plot Creation and Development?
     
  12. Ocinatu
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    Ocinatu New Member

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    I have to say I didn't spend a lot of time reading on this forum before I posted, so I realized pretty fast after I'd posted that this is not the right question to ask. Sorry to annoy you with another silly thread.. but now I understand how I should be thinking. ;) And I will read your link!
     
  13. Jack Asher
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    Jack Asher Wildly experimental Contributor

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    In my short time here this is how Cogito has responded to every request to brainstorm. I stopped paying attention to it.

    It sounds like your story is rife with opportunity for stereotype and that's something to be very cautious of.
    That's all, good luck.
     
  14. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Maybe you should pay more attention. So far, all you have done is dismiss the advice out of hand.

    This is how writers brainstorm:
    1. Pose a question.
    2, Think of various possible outcomes or consequences.
    3. Write a story based on his or her ruminations
    4. Listen to the discussion about the finished story.

    I post the above response so that people seeking validation, or those expecting others to do their thinking for them, learn to think more like a writer.
     
  15. EdFromNY
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    EdFromNY Hope to improve with age Supporter Contributor

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    Stress codes? Seriously?
     
  16. KaTrian
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    KaTrian A foolish little beast. Staff Supporter Contributor

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    wtf, dress codes :D
     
  17. minstrel
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    minstrel Leader of the Insquirrelgency Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Is there a difference?
     
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  18. KaTrian
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    KaTrian A foolish little beast. Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Touché.
     

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