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  1. Ianames
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    Ianames New Member

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    Is this scene ridiculous or believable to you?

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Ianames, Mar 8, 2015.

    Hello everyone,

    I'm wondering whether this is cheating (bad writing) or not. I have this scene where this kid fell really high–from the sky. However, he survived. Is that too much of a stretch for my readers. Any tips to make it believable...
     
  2. BayView
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    BayView Contributing Member Contributor

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    Like, literally from the sky?

    What genre are you writing in?
     
  3. Ianames
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    Ianames New Member

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    Hi thank you for replying. It's actually a graphic novel. Although I'm an artist, I'm totally new to writing but I do care about good story telling.

    It is a science fiction comedy mixed with a slight drama/serious tone for contrast.

    Also note, he fell really high—let's just say as high as birds can fly.
     
  4. BayView
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    BayView Contributing Member Contributor

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    And does the character literally fall from the sky? Where does he come from? How far is the drop?

    It would be stretching my willing suspension of disbelief to have him survive the fall, but you can include mitigating factors (some sort of soft landing, etc.) and you can have people in the book express their own disbelief as a way to sort of acknowledge the issue and then move on with the story.
     
  5. Ianames
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    Ianames New Member

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    Well, as fast as you possibly can fall

    "In very high falls, bodies can reach terminal velocity, the speed at which air resistance becomes so high it cancels out the acceleration due to gravity. Once at terminal velocity, you can fall as far as you like and you won't gather any more speed."

    http://www.theguardian.com/science/2004/may/20/thisweekssciencequestions2

    Although I know a few people have survived high falls, I understand writing isn't like real life. I'm just getting a feel whether it's a stretch or not.

    I also might add, this is near the beginning of the story where one of my main character got so angry when the kid touch a very touchy subject about his mentally challenge daughter and tossed him up high in the air telling him about consequences about your action.

    There are two things I wanted to established about my character here.
    -He has anger management issue
    -He has super human ability
    -But he cares a lot about his daughter who is my main character of the story

    But in this scene, I wanted to show that he also a hypocrite and flawed. He doesn't think much of the consequences when he tossed the kid really high. He realized this and he try to catch the kid but he missed in a dark comedic manner. Although, I want the kid to survive as he is also a key character that will develop as an ally for my main character.
     
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2015
  6. Bryan Romer
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    Bryan Romer Contributing Member Contributor

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    If it is someone being thrown into the air and falling back to the ground, I would assume some pretty serious injuries even from quite low heights, even though people have survived falling from aircraft and 7 story windows. I would suggest a lucky fall into something soft enough to break much of the impact or several somethings like canvas awnings or a tent.
     
  7. Ianames
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    Ianames New Member

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    Yes, serious injury (even near death) is the maximum that I can allow it to happen because I needed the kid in the future. Although, I do want this man who tossed him be in deep trouble for pulling this stunt. That's the comedic part where he tries to remedy the consequences of his action.

    Well, thinking about it... The scene is forested so there are a lot of trees. So it's not overly unbelievable that he would land on one to help soften the fall. I guess, I'll just do that.
     
  8. ChickenFreak
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    ChickenFreak Contributing Member Contributor

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    If you're not treating it as something essentially impossible, it wouldn't work for me, trees or no trees. The kid would be the one who'd need to be supernatural, to survive. (Or someone would be acting as one or the other's guardian angel, or one or the other has supernaturally high luck, or...something.)
     
  9. Swiveltaffy
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    Swiveltaffy Contributing Member Contributor

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    I've heard of this happening very rarely, but it happens to people I'll never know, who aren't important characters in a story.

    Also, if the boy does live, it rather reduces the negatives of the supernatural person's anger issues. I mean, he knows how strong he is, and he just did something incredibly risky and damaging, being completely irresponsible and hasty. If the kid lives, it reduces this, making feel more like: Well, he lived, so it's ok. Just my thoughts without more context.
     
  10. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    From the Guardian link above I looked at the noted survivor:
    The Wiki page lists half dozen or more other survivors from high falls:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vesna_Vulovi%C4%87#See_also
     
  11. Lilith_Duat
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    Lilith_Duat Member

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    If it's a forest, maybe he falls into a lake? Still dangerous but if trees break his fall, he might have a better chance of surviving.
     
  12. ChickenFreak
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    ChickenFreak Contributing Member Contributor

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    From that height, falling in water will kill you, too. But fewer readers will know that, so it could be less of a problem.
     
  13. HelloThere
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    HelloThere Contributing Member

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    It's probably possible to get away with it in a comedic graphic novel, I mean, you could go down a less realistic/more stylized route; Art based mediums and exaggerated violence go hand in hand - Looney Tunes, Tom and Jerry, Family Guy... just something to consider. :D

    good luck
     
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  14. Catrin Lewis
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    Catrin Lewis Contributing Member Contributor

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    How strong is the tosser? (Sorry, bad joke.) That's the first thing you'll have to deal with, the idea that even a strong grown man can throw a kid "high as birds fly."

    But! Things like that-- both the wild, impossible up and the equally crazy terribly-injured-but-not-really down-- happen in cartoons all the time. Just look at the old Popeye the Sailorman cartoons or the Beetle Bailey comic (when Sarge is beating Beetle up) or in Mad Magazine's "Spy vs. Spy." It'd be perfectly "logical" if you're going for that sort of comic strip absurdist exaggeration.

    Since you're doing a dark comedy graphic novel, you could center the whole thing around non-realism and slapstick and keep up that tone all the way through.
     
  15. ChickenFreak
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    ChickenFreak Contributing Member Contributor

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    Hmm. Actually. At the risk of being Sheldon, I have to say that the tossing will almost certainly kill the kid; we don't need to care how or where he falls. The amount of force required to propel the kid to that height, applied in one instant, will probably rip the kid apart. Similarly, catching him will kill him.

    (Sheldon: Lois Lane is falling, accelerating at an initial rate of 32 feet per second per second. Superman swoops down to save her by reaching out two arms of steel. Miss Lane, who is now travelling at approximately 120 miles per hour, hits them, and is immediately sliced into three equal pieces.
    Leonard: Unless, Superman matches her speed and decelerates.
    Sheldon: In what space, sir, in what space? She’s two feet above the ground. Frankly, if he really loved her, he’d let her hit the pavement. It would be a more merciful death.
    Edited to credit the quote, in case it's not obvious: It's from the TV show Big Bang Theory.)
     
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2015
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  16. Dagolas
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    Dagolas Banned

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    I thought it was well known falling from even a bridge into water can break your spine?
     
  17. Ianames
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    Ianames New Member

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    The tone is kind-a-goofy comedy but it isn't exactly like looney toons but more like UP where an old man flew his home using baloons or dogs that can talk using a collar device. For example, in this world chicken have become so huge and have replaced dogs. However, it does have serious themes as a contrast for the comedy.
     
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2015
  18. Ianames
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    Ianames New Member

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  19. Garball
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    Garball Sometimes nothing can be a real cool hand. Supporter Contributor

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    If the reader is led to believe a superhuman man can throw a kid that high in the air, why should the kid's survival have to be rooted in such stringent reality?
     
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  20. ChickenFreak
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    ChickenFreak Contributing Member Contributor

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    It doesn't, but the question was whether the scenario is believable. It's not believable in realistic fiction. The world around the scene would have to be tuned to a lower standard of realism.
     
  21. Catrin Lewis
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    Catrin Lewis Contributing Member Contributor

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    With giant pet chickens. :D

    (Will that mean you can't get them fried?)
     
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  22. Chinspinner
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    Chinspinner Contributing Member Contributor

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    At that sort of height/ speed it would probably depend on how you entered the water; but if hit at terminal velocity, water has similar properties to a solid. It won't be saving anyone. And yes, I think that is common knowledge.
     
  23. Mike Kobernus
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    Mike Kobernus Contributing Member

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    He could be carrying something that acts as a brake as he falls. But people have survived parachute failures, although usually with every bone broken.

    One woman survived jumping off the Clifton Suspension Bridge, due to her skirt billowing out and acting like a parachute. This was in the time when skirts were a little more substantial, I have to say.

    Still, maybe your character can have something that slows him, a little.
     
  24. jannert
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    Unless I'm missing some vital component to this question, I'm with @Garball here. If some guy can throw a kid up into the sky, as high as birds can fly, then surely the kid can come down uninjured. This is fantasy/cartoon stuff. I mean, think of what Wile-E-Coyote used to survive.
     
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  25. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    I think it depends on the tone you've set for the story. Think of the things Tom survives in Tom and Jerry. Or think of how many times James Bond should have died rather than survived but no one pats an eyelid. If you wanted to be somewhat realistic, then you should have a good reason for why the kid survived. Say, Hulk fell sky-high from an plane or something in Avengers and survived - but of course he survived, he's HULK! Superman in Man of Steel crashed through numerous buildings and it's a given that he wasn't even injured. But on those two cases, there were reasons that made sense within the make-up of the story's world (eg. they're superheroes and therefore super-resilient. In Superman's case he's an alien lol and there's some psuedo-science involved to explain why he's extra strong etc on earth)

    In other words, it's fine, but make sure there's a pre-established law/logic within your world that could explain why the kid survived.

    if your story is leaning towards the absurd, then it'll be even easier to explain away.
     

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