1. FinalStar
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    FinalStar Member

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    plots, conflicts and structure issues

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by FinalStar, Aug 25, 2009.

    Hello, This is my first time posting. I think i am posting in the right area. It is a plot/conflict issues along with a bit of a structure issue.

    I get an idea for a plot. I write it down. i know the start and the end. But never really the middle. i sometime have a fuzzy idea of what it could be but its never really clear. I lack conflicts most of the time.

    example idea:

    The species Mukaltra has a love of science. Mukaltra started to work with black holes to understand them. One such test was to put Talbeos (Homo habilis) in to a ship and send it in to the black hole. The scientist did a number of these test before coming to a conclusion that the ships are being crushed and ever thing on bored is dead.

    a few millions years later the Mukaltra space probes came across a planet. That is now know as earth and found a few of the ships sent in to the black holes. they had some how crashed landed on earth. The Talbeos lived and evolve in to a new species.

    The mukaltra came to earth having first contact with man. The returned again to find that humans had started to worship them like gods. Mukaltra made up there minds to leave this primitive species alone. The Mukaltra secretly check up on man for scientific reason and find that man is reaching out for the stars.

    The mukaltra start to gather all their data to see what kind of species we would be out in space. seeing we are a warring species and feeling it was there mistake they pick to kill off mankind. To fix their mistake.

    That is an idea i have. I just don't know how to write it. The only conflict i see is that Mukaltra is going to kill every human. But how do i tell the start of it? i have events such as the black hole test, the crashing on earth, the first contact with us. seeing we are started to worship them as gods. (if you look in history you can see that in Egypt and other places around the world they have UFOs like drawing.) the time frame is really spaced apart. I don't seeing having a scientist who worked on the black hole test being alive for the meeting to talk about killing off mankind.

    This is a common problem for me. having events but no conflict or knowing how to link them up.

    I lack structure i seem to get a bit A.D.D when i go to write. along with other ideas running in to other ones. I start stuff and then just start something else the next day. Any ideas on how i could be a bit more focused?

    Sorry its a bit of a long post. Hope to hear from some one

    ~FS
     
  2. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Start by reading What is Plot Creation and Development?, and see if that helps you into the right frame of mind.

    I do think you need to do some research on black holes. You send an organic creature into a black hole, it will be ripped apart into its component subatomic particles, and it will fall essentially forever. No organic material will come back out. The only thing that escapes a black hole is radiation (the Hawking effect). No one with any knowledge of black hole physics will read beyond the discovery of the descendants of the test subjects on Earth.
     
  3. JohnLaylian
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    JohnLaylian New Member

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    The early time frame is too spaced apart, so you might want to use it as a base and a setting rather than the story itself or you could use them as a prologue.

    You might be able to use the conflict Mukaltra exterminating mankind as your main plot. Make a normal human main character (civilian, soldier, etc.) as a part of group fighting against the oncoming Mukaltra forces.

    If Mukaltras happen to be the protagonists, you could make half of them the 'bad' side, trying to exterminate the mankind, and the other half 'good' side, trying to stop the 'bad' side from exterminating the mankind. If you actually want to consider any of my ideas, you may be able to lead the story in a war style. H.G. Wells' War of the Worlds might help you a little.
     
  4. HorusEye
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    HorusEye Contributing Member Contributor

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    Make it wormholes instead of black holes?
     
  5. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Whether black holes, wormholes, or some unidentified anomaly, I have to wonder at the logic of sending animals or slaves on probes into the phenomenon. Ships disappear, so why send ANYTHING other than instrumentation in, and certainly not creatures they couldn't expect any information back from.

    I think the logic will be very difficult to sell, as presented.
     
  6. Sylvester
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    Sylvester Member

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    Not all...

    Earthlings are warlike as I think their research will show.

    Maybe you can look at having some of Mukaltras scientist see the good in the human race and want to spare it from genecide. Of course their military will disagree.

    I just can't see an entire race that has been around millions of years of so readily accepting genecide.

    That is turn could be part of the solution as it is the Mukaltra who are looking like the warring race, not the people of Earth.

    And I do agree with Cogito. It's kind of dumb to keep sending manned ships to their doom.

    Perhaps you can have one ship accidentally stumble onto an unknown black hole and get sucked in. One or two other non-science ships get the SOS and go to their aid and get sucked in too. Then a science-based ship shows up and spots the black hole. The area is "roped" off and life goes on.

    You have three ships with dozens, or hundreds, of people that can later be discovered on Earth.

    The idea needs some work, but it's a start. Good luck with it.
     
  7. Snap
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    That being said, technically black holes are only a theory, as well as what happens when you enter one. Think about it, if no organic material survives, there's no possible way of knowing what really happens, right? I mean, technically, anything could happen, and we wouldn't know if the material in question was transported somewhere else, made into something else, or just torn apart, right? Just sayin'. :)

    Also, only knowing the beginning and the end of your novel is quite normal. You need to flesh it out a little more. Write down ideas of what could happen in the middle. What I always do is ask myself, "What could go wrong?" Because things going wrong is conflict, and without conflict there is no story. Now, you don't want TOO much conflict, which then becomes unbelievable, but this is a good way to start. I then make a list of everything that could happen to my characters, and how they would get out of it. Then I'll edit out the things that I think are weaker plot points until I have a solid plot to work with.

    Above all, don't start writing until you've fully researched (just because you write fantasy/scifi doesn't mean you don't have to research), and you should have an outline. Without a roadmap you don't know where you're going. And that is a very good way to get lost.
     
  8. FinalStar
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    FinalStar Member

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    I was thinking about that. it's just a theory. Maybe have a Mukaltra trapped on bored and when passing in the black hole they are made in to something else. there DNA and so on are mixed together.

    for the whole race of Mukaltra to accepting genocide was one idea. i have another one were one of the Mukaltra is task to compiling all the data about Earth and the humans. But he doesn't want it the genocide and fights to save them. But i think most Mukaltra feel as being the one of if not the oldest race they have rights and things they most do. Such as fix a mistake that wouldn't have happened naturally.
     
  9. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Sorry, but it's theory with a LOT of supporting evidence, as well as quite a few other theories derived from it that also have supporting evidence in real measurements.

    You could similarly say that quantum mechanics is just a theory. No one has seen a single particle behaving as a wave, but the experimental evidence of that dual nature is incontrovertible.

    Physicists know a lot about black hole behavior. In particular, the tidal gradient doesn't even involve the event horizon -- it can be calculated with ordinary gravitational formulae any time you have a close approach to a very massive body. That gravitational gradient will tear any solid matter apart.

    And we have seen black holes, in the same sense that we have seen neutrinos and many other elementary particles. We can't observe them directly, but we can see their side effects with sufficient detail to confirm their existence in a particular place.

    If you're going to use a particular well-defined concept, you must follow trhe establihed behavior for that concept.
     
  10. Snap
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    I rest my case. :) I'm not disputing the existence of black holes or the evidence behind it. I'm just saying, evidence can be explained away. After all, that's what we do as fiction writers, right? We bend the truth. However, FinalStart, if you decide to do that, I would definitely, DEFINITELY do some research, as you want to do it intelligently and at least semi-plausibly.
     
  11. Cyrano
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    You could start it as a human vs. alien story, with the humans fighting back as well as trying to figure out why the aliens are attacking. Over the course of the story, the humans uncover the whole black hole event. Though I'm at a loss on how the story could be resolved from there.
     
  12. architectus
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    architectus Banned

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    I would just ditch the black hole thing. Ships can't survive going into one, and they wouldn't come out as ships.

    So the Mulkatra like science. Why not have them working with DNA synthesis and what not? They mix their own DNA with Hobo Habilis to see the results. They place them on earth. They check back on them later. Now you need MC(s) so you have create conflict.

    Say one of the Mulkatra secretly created this species and put them on a planet, we find out later is earth. Years later the Malkatra find these species and start to do experiments on them and discover they pretty much have Makatra DNA. One of the Mulkatra wish to destroy this abomination.

    It would probably be best to start on Earth. Go into the MC's life. Perhaps he is an astronomer and finds an odd object coming toward earth. It doesn't act like any object he could imagine. He helper has a theory that it is a space craft, but how? It's massive.

    Then you can jump to the ship. The MC will be the Villian, the Mulkatra that ends up wanting to destroy humans, the abominations that they are. At some point he discovers one of his people created humans, using Malkatra DNA and Homo Habilis'.

    The MC on earth is trying to warn the governments about this threat, once he is convinced that it is a massive ship.

    Now when the Mulkatra find out that humans have their DNA, they also study their past and found out that the Mulkatra that created humans also allowed humans to worship him. Perhaps he was Marduk from the Enuma Elish, who is said to have created man using his blood and the earth. Another version says his blood and an apes'.

    Perhaps one of the human MC's sneak onto the ship. He gets captured by one of the females and they develop a relationship. In the process he convinces her to save humans. To give them a chance to explore the universe.

    Does she go against her leader that wishes to destroy humans, or does she choose to help them?

    Before this conflict, earlier in the story. Does the human scientist convince the governments to try and destroy the incoming ship, or does he convince them to stand down? If he convinces them to stand down, perhaps they are hostile. If he tries to destroy them and fails, perhaps that pisses them off. etc.

    Creating MCs is how you discover what conflicts you want.
     

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