1. Bluemouth
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    Bluemouth Contributing Member Contributor

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    I'm Considering This Incredibly Sudden Idea

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Bluemouth, Nov 9, 2007.

    Very recently I've subconsciously been waiting for an idea or inspiration for a story (novel) to hit me and I think one did, so I may as well run it by people for public opinion.

    Normally I write sensible, realistic stuff but this time I might attempt something a little different. In some ways the idea seems a little immature but I still think if I can turn it into a mature adventure novel it could be good. So here are the basics:

    There's a man who dies and awakes (not resurrected) in a field. There is no wind. No sound. In the distance lies nothingness, apart from a single willow tree. The man makes his way over to the tree and to cut a long story short he discovers a city (civilisation) and upon entering he notices obvious differences apart from the normal flow of people (for example there are the extinct dodo birds walking down the streets amongst limited traffic and so on). The story goes on the man meets with his brother, who had died as well, so obviously the place is some kind of afterlife (however this is not Heaven or any religious belief, thus it cannot conflict with such views considering it fictitiously disproves religion AS WELL as Atheism...).

    Anyway, the man joins in with this society, formed of extinct people and such. He opts to join a science research group whose job it is to do research on the wildlife and such, which is where the adventure aspect comes into it (dinosaurs and other extinct/dead creatures inhabiting this world). The man also takes a roadtrip with his brother out into the country to visit a suspended city and other civilisations.

    I'll leave it there in attempt to not bore people. It seems farfetched and a little weird but hey it's imagination.

    Does this sort of story interest anyone at all or should I just not bother. Remember, if I finished this I would attempt for publication so if it seems too wacky please tell me now. :D
     
  2. simprared
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    simprared New Member

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    yea kindoff ,maybe i am too imature to comment onyu but i somehow feel it doesnt lead yu newhere ,nd der are too many passibilities for you to miss logic but neways alldbest
     
  3. Domoviye
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    Domoviye Contributing Member

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    This isn't wacky, but it is definitely interesting.
    Some questions to consider.
    Do they have any powers being dead?
    Do they still eat?
    Can they have children?
    Is it a world of the dead as in fairly barren, and not nice?
    Is it like Earth, as in trees and plants grow, and it doesn't have anything too unnatural other then dead animals and people?
    Do they age?
    Can they die?
    Do buildings and objects that have been destroyed occasionally show up there?

    You don't have to answer any of these, they're just to help you flesh out your idea.

    Edit: change a question for clarity
     
  4. Bluemouth
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    Bluemouth Contributing Member Contributor

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    Thank you for the response, particularly since some of those points I never even considered.

    I think one of the most interesting ideas in the story is the topic of death. The way I see it, the people who have passed on from Earth and are now living on this other planet, are equally vulnerable, therefore they can die as well. This then asks an intriguing question: where do people go once they have died on the second planet?

    Another thing I just decided on would be excluding any famous buildings or other objects. I think I'll keep things at the biotic level. :)

    Anyway thanks for the little additions these things really do help.
     
  5. Rebel Wisdom
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    Rebel Wisdom New Member

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    hmmmm....well according to me, if u write ur novel based on this kind of story it will definitely work for u!!! but u will need to concentrate on other facts too and not only what the person goes abt like dodo birds and dinosaurs as u mentioned!!! u also need to emphasis on teh the whole things that happens aftr life ! like make ur own stories.....ofcourse no1 knows how is it aftr death but u can always make something like how is life for ppl ? how do they look like ??? how life is diff. as compared to teh normal life ? do they have jobs ? are there still crimes going on ??? u need to create an ideal picture of life after death in the readers mind !!! I hope that will make an intersting story and obviously worth reading !!!
    IMAGINATION HAS NO BOUNDRY !!!!! go for it !!!
     
  6. Domoviye
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    Domoviye Contributing Member

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    No problem.
    I got the ideas from playing a table top RPG that dealt with the afterlife after you died. It was very bleak, but considered one of the best games no one ever played due to all the weird concepts.
    If I think of anything else I'll mention them.
    Good luck.
     
  7. Bluemouth
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    Bluemouth Contributing Member Contributor

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    Some of the best games are the ones no one has ever heard of, and the same applies for most things in life.

    Thanks and I'll keep you posted when I get round to starting this monster.
     
  8. MarcG
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    MarcG Contributing Member

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    You could also consider that certain animals would be nearly impossible to find - if the dinosaurs thrived, I doubt a little 'ol caveman is going to do so well. That could be an interesting explanation for why certain "extinct" or otherwise common animals aren't around, although a large influx of animals could be seen as some sort of catastrophe in the original world. Lots of places to go with this.

    There would be a massive amount of squirrels if the amount I've seen on the highway are any indicator. ;)
     
  9. Bluemouth
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    Bluemouth Contributing Member Contributor

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    :p

    I'm thinking I should write this with a sense of originality, which would mean there's no heavy focus on dinosaurs as the dominant species, there'd be the animals that followed them. Walking With Beasts, if you've seen it then we're on the same wavelength. But this idea is really growing.

    Other things to consider would be the process of evolution creating new species from the extinct ones on Earth, meaning I could fictitiously create animals, although I think this would be drawback in the story for some reason. Also, the separations of civiliasations - how do people travel? I don't want to use planes, we've learnt about the vulnerability of resources, so maybe people drive solar-powered vehicles. That means they have to take a road trip to get from one town to another, so they are driving through potential danger zones.

    It's got the potential to be quality keyboard fodder as far as I see it.
     
  10. MarcG
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    MarcG Contributing Member

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    Technology... well, scientists die, don't they? ;)

    They would be a few years back by our standards but would have plenty of innovations, I'd imagine. Things that they may have been too old or sick to do, or something inspired by an idea or rough planning. Ex: if someone here invented a new kind of, say, boat - someone who died may have some rough knowledge of it but unable to replicate it. This may result in similiar technologies with certain imaginative differences. Essentially, one could have somewhat more "fantastic" technology based on recent revelations in a field, but without the definitive shape that it would have in "the real world". If that makes any sense.
     
  11. SnipSnap
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    SnipSnap Active Member

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    I was interested when you spelled "civilisation."

    Usually it's spelled w/ a z ... and yet you spelled it with an s. Just like old Huck Finn when he satires the bobtails out of the concept of civilizing someone.

    Maybe you meant it. Maybe you didn't. I liked it anyway.
     
  12. Bluemouth
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    Bluemouth Contributing Member Contributor

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    I'm Australian so my spelling is different to yours. Here's some more examples:

    Mum - mom
    Colour - color
    Criticise - criticize
    Doughnut - donut (although I just learnt that one now and have always used 'donut')

    Here's some more.
     
  13. Domoviye
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    Domoviye Contributing Member

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    Here's an idea for you.

    This is a world for the dead. Maybe the animals can mate, but evolution, change doesn't happen. To change means having a vital life force, but these things have all died once. They've lost a little bit of the ability to change themselves.
    So you would still have dinosaurs and ancient creatures walking around, but they'd look exactly like they did in life. And throughout the eons, they've slowly died off. Now instead of having a thriving ecology of dinosaurs, you'll see one or two, every few months. Most of the old species, just stopped mating, stopped living, and disappeared.

    Heck if you want, make it so that if people are catatonic, or virtually so they end up dying quickly, as the soul can't stay doing nothing in the world. Its the people who keep trying to learn, trying to change, that become strong, live a very long time, and do all the important things. People who just try to get by day to day without thinking of the future, become slowly more apathetic, slowing down bit by bit, until eventually they just don't bother getting up and go on to somewhere else.

    Again just an idea.
     
  14. Bluemouth
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    Bluemouth Contributing Member Contributor

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    Exactly, makes perfect sense. Something else I think is wise would be excluding famous personalities from physically appearing in the story, eg. Einstein (although he may have died a second time by now). I don't need to explain the obvious reasons but I feel following those sorts of plot ideas is a bad move. Anyway, thanks for all the help so far MarcG or just Marc.
     
  15. Bluemouth
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    Bluemouth Contributing Member Contributor

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    Dom, while I prefer the idea of the wildlife not evolving (certainly makes things much easier for me) I'm not sure I'm keen on some of the humans steadily becoming 'motionless' and moving on. I understand perfectly where you're coming from but I think as a civilisation (;)) life should be similar to what it is now, with some important improvements. Maybe the mystery surrounding the people is finding out where they'll end up next once they die again. Perhaps they attempt to find out what happens.

    Actually, this reminds me of another plot point I had when I first thought of the idea. It spared me from the excuse of people committing suicide in order to get to the 'next stage'. I was thinking along the lines of the population of this second place being much smaller, as the people that were alive there had died prematurely or due to old age. By this I mean they had either been involved in an accident, something that cut their life short when it could've been longer, or they had lived healthily to old age. This effectively means (with some plot holes I know) that with each new population of people they are getting stronger and stronger, the weak are being separated from the strong, similar to natural selection - there will be no genes coding for heart attacks, disease, etc. This does raise the issue of excluding a vast number of other individuals, but the way I see it a population of people is slowly being shaped by something:eek: until the most perfect group of humans is colonised. Well this is getting even more exciting!
     
  16. MarcG
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    MarcG Contributing Member

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    So you "appear" in this world once you've died after either a healthy life or an accident? Not sure if this would result in "stronger" people - the kid that said "look at me!" and jumped off the roof may not have been as resilient as his 107 year old great grandfather. ;)

    Yet... dying of old age doesn't seem reasonable. Perhaps you could twist it to where (this is something the characters may believe or allude to) the people that appear are there because they did not accept death and their soul is wandering. Or something to that extent. So the man hit by the bus may just black out and wake up in the middle of a field. His "soul", so to speak, didn't expect the bus to run the red light, so it keeps on going with or without what had been his body. You can explain it any way you want - and the best part is, you don't have to set it in stone. You can have your characters explain it. Then it may or may not be what you actually have occur, just an assumption the characters follow. Somewhat like... a religion of sorts. And yet, not a religion at all.
     
  17. Domoviye
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    Domoviye Contributing Member

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    Thats fair. Like I said it was just something that popped into my head.
    And I would say keep why people arrive in that a world a mystery. Maybe have the majority die in a certain way. But then that weird guy in the corner died from a stroke at 20. Keep some mystery to it.
     
  18. Koosha
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    Koosha New Member

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    It actually sounds like a really good idea to me, I just don't see the entire plot. What does he have to do in the story, or what does he have to overcome, for the story to come to an ending? Perhaps the research could be more of a Find-A-Way-Back-To-Earth Plan (yeah, I'm just pulling ideas out of a hat here), so there would be a definite ending there.

    Then again, you did say that you didn't want to give us the entire plot because you didn't want to bore us (which you didn't, in my opinion), so you might have that already figured out, I just don't see it.
     
  19. Bluemouth
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    Bluemouth Contributing Member Contributor

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    Well to be honest I don't have any real plot-moving ideas, mostly it's just the interesting images that are steadily forming into a workable storyline. If I had to answer what the current plot is, I could only reply with what I posted at the start of the thread and the fact that on this man's journey, while on the roadtrip with his brother to the suspended city, they stop off at the brother's friend's place, who happens to live alone in a cabin off the main road. The friend would present some interesting views and would show a discovery he had recently made, which would involve taking the characters out into the danger of an open field to a carefully marked point covered with a tarpaulin which, once uncovered, reveals a form of wormhole or other space phenomena that is seemingly weaving its way beneath the surface of this second planet. However, by following this path I can tell things could get silly, but for now it's an idea I'm warming too. What do you think? It doesn't really give any solid plot, I know.

    Mmm, I considered this little point and it refers back to the idea that a stronger group is forming with each successive "stage". So if that playful youngster were to suffer from a disease later in life on this other planet then he'd be gone from the chain that supposedly continues. Also, the old age deaths is my next problem. Should these people be reborn in the other world as the same person, or come to as they left or perhaps a younger version of themselves? I also like your points on the "soul".

    In reply to Dom, any discussion relating to why everything is happening would be kept to minimal and act as one of those agitating details the reader desperately wants to know but only finds out in gradual doses. The stroke victim, or the "exception to the rule", is great.
     
  20. MarcG
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    MarcG Contributing Member

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    If you don't end up going with your "wormhole" plot (which may essentially make the wonderful setting you're working useless), there are plenty of places to take it. An investigation into why/what/where/how/when/etc. Or maybe a Sir Arthur Conan Doyle "Lost World"-esque adventure story, complete with real live dinosaurs, sea monsters, and a myriad of other critters.

    Or, hell, something is going wrong in the real world and there is generally the consensus that what's done there can influence on some level the 1st planet. Along the lines of "it's in a seperate plane of existence but action X seems to have effect Y", and maybe some sort of seeing the future - actions that affect world 1 can happen before action Z in world 2 - so someone that died could cause their own death. Or maybe something plausible (or at least logical) ;). Then just take it down to some human nature and the hero will do whatever he can for a loved one left alive (he may see reasons for them not dying - was the "trip" to the second world particularly unpleasant? Perhaps life there just isn't what it was before?) despite it going against generally everything that the majority is doing. Well, I just made an plotline.
     
  21. Koosha
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    Koosha New Member

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    The choice is yours. You don't have to have a definite plot now, I'm sure things will work their way into place as you write.

    I don't think things would get silly, people would just have to creatively think about it. With something so unseemingly controversial as an afterlife, something many people wonder about but have no proof of- you making a story out of it like this is a golden idea. On top of that, you don't deal with a Heaven or a Hell specifically, but instead an entire separate type of place. I wish I would've thought of it!
     
  22. Bluemouth
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    Bluemouth Contributing Member Contributor

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    Haha Koosha, I've experienced that feeling quite a few times before. :p

    I think I'm just going to get into it now. It'll be time consuming, but hopefully rewarding. And there'll definitely be aspects of The Lost World, as that could be counted as inspiration in a way.

    I'll keep you all posted if I come up with a solid plot idea.
     
  23. Anthony James Barnett
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    Anthony James Barnett Contributing Member

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    Okay

    I think basically there's a good story in there. I quite enjoyed the concepts. I would suggest you plan it out quite carefully before expanding, though. Don't just write freehand. I can foresee technical problems that might crop up if you don't have a full game-plan.

    Make sure you know why things can and do happen. Have an explanation ready even if you don't write it into the story. Background stuff, even when not used, always enriches your work. Whatever you do, don't rely on chancing it with readers, they're too canny.

    As for markets, there's always a good market for sci-fi.

    I say go for it. What is there to lose except your inhibitions - Anthony
     
  24. SnipSnap
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    SnipSnap Active Member

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    I know the spelling's different. I was just saying what I noticed. I'm quite aware of your australianess and the thussified different spellings. Need not to worry.
     
  25. Bluemouth
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    Bluemouth Contributing Member Contributor

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    For anyone looking for an update, a bit of inspiration or perhaps a sense of self-gloating then I'm just going to say that every so often I'll post an update of how far I've got into this story.

    I consider the start the hardest to write but I've just completed the prologue, and it felt very comfortable, especially my main character. I was interested to find myself warming to new plot ideas as I was writing and I now have a new focus for parts of the story (I'm not going to write about that though). So for now, I'm about 5 typed pages down, sitting on just under 3,000 words.
     

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