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  1. Mallory
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    Mallory Mallegory. Contributor

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    Magic Portal to a Boring World

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Mallory, Feb 11, 2011.

    Hi,

    For the story in my other thread (this one: http://www.writingforums.org/showthread.php?t=38282), my main protag, 12-year-old Adalyn, must join a battle in an alternate universe that's characterized by mundate boredom and ruled by an evil queen who wants to make everyone incapable of individuality and independence.

    I'm trying to come up with a good portal from her great-aunt's home to the alt world, and could use some help.

    I really don't want to do mirrors or wardrobes, for obvious reasons.

    I was thinking of having one of the closets in the house lead to a rushing river that takes her there, but I'd like to see what other suggestions people have.

    Thanks! :)
    (As always, I'll give you rep if you help me!)
     
  2. PurpleCandle
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    PurpleCandle Senior Member

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    whatever the portal is, it should be something really boring and mundane. Something that people would not look at because it is so boring (this prevents too many people from entering the other world and is a clue about the nature of the other world)

    Perhaps a painting. A giant canvas painted gray (Something old, so it is valuable and would not be thrown away for being boring). One could just walk through it to get to the other side?? Or touch something?

    Or what about a well? Falls down, or walks down well..finds small door..opens it..water rushes in and takes her to the rushing river?
     
  3. Mallory
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    Mallory Mallegory. Contributor

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    Hmm, I like the painting thing. It actually fits in with a bit of my backstory. It works really well...thanks!!!
     
  4. guamyankee
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    guamyankee Contributing Member

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    Yes, but its been done. One of the C.S. Lewis books, maybe Voyage of the Dawn Treader?

    I like the idea that it should be boring though. What about an old TV? The old school kind that is not HD. It could even be black and white. Then, when you turn the knob to a certain channel, there's the world, in full color, and you can step right into it through the TV.
     
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  5. Mallory
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    Mallory Mallegory. Contributor

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    Thanks for the heads up.

    TV is cool, but that might seem too much like "The Ring." Hmmm...

    I think I'm going to use one of the secret passageways in the house - they are already sort of significant for another reason haha.

    Thanks for posting, both of you!
     
  6. guamyankee
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    guamyankee Contributing Member

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    PurpleCandle, it appears that while my own idea will not be employed, I have managed to get your idea ousted. Now we both lose, bwa ha ha ha ha!
     
  7. Mallory
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    Mallory Mallegory. Contributor

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    Well I really do appreciate your pointing out that the painting idea has been taken. You saved me from looking like a ripoff, and for that, I owe you one. :D
     
  8. Elgaisma
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    Elgaisma Contributing Member Contributor

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    LOL I am tempted to suggest the toilet or the drain outside - although person would need to shrink.
     
  9. Trilby
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    Trilby Contributing Member Contributor

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    Chasing butterflies, she trips over an oak tree root and accidentally opens a door to another world inside the tree trunk.

    She opens a dusty antique book in the library and is drawn into the world therein.

    A large Victorian doll's house could somehow come in to play in this plot. Realistic dolls maybe - or does that seem too evil. I wasn't thinking evil.
    edit - more thoughts:
    How does this sound -the dolls house being a scaled down model of the house and while playing with the dolls house she discovers a secret door or trap door under one of the carpets (maybe) and off she goes to investigate the main house, and there under the carpet is a trap door.
     
  10. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Everything has been done in some form. Don't let that deter you.

    Consider also that the portal may not let just anyone pass. For example, in Piers Anthony's Split Infinity series, people could cross portals between the parallel worlds of Proton and Phaze if their counterpart in the other world were dead.

    I see more of a problem with a boring other world. That nearly guarantees a boring story. The reader needs to have a reason to care. You might be able to hold interest with your world-hopping character, but it won't be easy in such a setting.
     
  11. PurpleCandle
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    PurpleCandle Senior Member

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    That is ok, I had fun just trying to think of an idea for the OP :) Even if it had been thought of before, which just about everything has!
     
  12. Mallory
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    Mallory Mallegory. Contributor

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    Thanks Purple.

    Cogito, I hope you realize I don't mean "boring world" as in one that is literally boring to the reader; I just mean a world where the bad guys want to force everyone to be identical, mindless drones with no knowledge of individuality. The MC and her friends have to save the world from such a fate. The story includes lots of adventures and action. :)

    Elg, I'm not so keen on having the MC shrink, but I really am drawn to the idea of there being a rushing river of some kind. I'll see how I can make that work.
     
  13. jo spumoni
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    jo spumoni Active Member

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    I love your idea! Considering the number of stories there are about going through a portal to world more fabulous (e.g. Alice in Wonderland and Narnia to name few), it's a really funny idea that our side might be much more fabulous than our parallel.

    A mundane portal is a good thought, considering the nature of the world. Maybe the portal could be an office or a filing cabinet. Or maybe the portal can be in an IKEA-like store where everything is mass-produced and kind of similar to everything else; I confess I don't shop at IKEA, but that's sort of the impression I get from the outside.

    By the way, you should check out Jonathan Barnes's book The Domino Men, which has a slightly similar twist. Don't worry, though; yours sounds like it's going to be very different from that book, and in any case, I can't imagine anything like The Domino Men. But it's worth a glance anyway.
     

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