1. MisterOz_GatorLover
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    MisterOz_GatorLover Member

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    Would this fly?

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by MisterOz_GatorLover, Feb 20, 2011.

    I know many of you don't like me because of some of my responses to your responses, but I'll be civil here. I am working on another angle of my story and it involves a high school football player. This football player, Jimmy, draws the ire of players from rival schools. Jimmy plays on a team called Punahou. The rival players belong to Iolani. The reason these Iolani players hate Jimmy is because Iolani courted him but claims that they don't court aspiring football players like Jimmy. Yet, Jimmy says to them that he's willing to expose this "secret" and becomes a major threat to Iolani. Furthermore, Jimmy insults the female students at Iolani and calls them ugly. He also gets under their skin when he shows to them that he's got a high opinion and sense entitlement of himself. This sense of entitlement annoys the Iolani kids (their names are Reid, Kevin, Matt, Blake, Mark, Reece, and others that I'm planning to include). When they learn that Jimmy is in a relationship as a freshman (many of his detractors are freshmen, sophomores, and juniors at Iolani), they become incensed and believe that a guy they deem ugly like Jimmy shouldn't attract girls. They ruin his relationship, anger him, and also stalk his sister. This sparks a war between Jimmy and his friends and his Iolani detractors. Any time Jimmy would play basketball or football, he'd encounter boos from Iolani spectators present. The Iolani enemies will also use facebook and other boards (like this one but a sports board) to humiliate and belittle Jimmy. They ruin another relationship of his and mock him when he injures himself. It is obvious that the Iolani kids are obsessing over Jimmy's personal life and obsessing over ruining his. The point of the story is the danger of obsessing over the personal lives of others. But would kids from a rival school hate somebody as much as the Iolani kids hate Jimmy? Note that other hobbies and traits of these Iolani kids is messing with other people's lives, going after girls from other schools, and flirting with girls while IN relationships (just to justify their huge ego). Because of their association with Iolani, their sense of entitlement makes Jimmy's look mild. They engage in stalking activities and whenever they successfully hide their deeds, feel the need to continue because they believe nobody can stop them or keep them from stalking. Another point of the story is the consequence of having a high opinion of oneself, a lesson Jimmy learns but his detractors don't. Share your thoughts here.
     
  2. ChickenFreak
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    ChickenFreak Contributing Member Contributor

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    No, I don't see this working. All of those characters with wildly irrational desires and egos would be hard to believe in, and even if you managed to make them believable, they're all so incredibly unlikable that it would be hard to care about any of them - not Jimmy, and not his enemies. Also, a "secret" that's apparently known to the entire high school team doesn't seem very secret.
     
  3. Porcupine
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    Porcupine Contributing Member

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    I don't see anything completely wrong with the story as it stands, since kids and teenagers are pretty irrational and take their lives far too seriously and get excited about small things that wiser people would just leave alone. But I have a feeling that your story would be a little boring to read for me.
     
  4. VM80
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    VM80 Contributing Member Contributor

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    It could work, it depends how you construct your characters to make it believable.

    There can be immense rivalry between sports teams from different schools etc., so that is not unusual. Also the stalking via facebook is something that happens, so again it could be incorporated into the story.

    The one thing I would suggest is that you don't make the characters from Iolani carbon copies of each other, i.e. don't make them too similar and create distinct personalities.

    I feel there needs to be a ring leader there who has got personal beef with Jimmy. The others kind of tag along...
     
  5. MisterOz_GatorLover
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    MisterOz_GatorLover Member

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    Thanks for the responses. It seems like the responses are favoring this story so it'll go forward as it is. Not all of the Iolani kids are like each other. Some just tag along because they've been brainwashed by friends to hate Jimmy.
     
  6. Laura Mae.
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    Laura Mae. Member

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    This is going to work, but only for a pre-teen/young teen audience, as some people have mentioned above it could be perceived as a little boring because of the setting (school), but I think you should go with it, but you should have a clear resolution to all this, because at the moment I can't see where this bullying is going to end - does Jimmy move schools? Is there a fight? Do his parents get involved? Does he begin bullying others?
     
  7. Mallory
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    Mallory Mallegory. Contributor

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    This could be a good YA/teen/preteen novel, but as VM80 pointed out, there needs to be one ringleader from the other school and have others tag along.

    The football-recruitment "secret" stuff is not a believable conflict, sorry. Make it something that the entire population would actually care about. For example, in Laurie Halse Anderson's "Speak," everyone hates the protag because she called the cops at a summer party and got a bunch of people in huge trouble. The truth was she was raped, but no one knows it and thought she was just being a tatttletale. In this case, people getting busted by the cops (or if their good friends were) because of someone's 911 call is a good motive to make someone a reject. Getting to be on the football team as a freshman is not reject motive - it would actually make Jimmy more popular.
     
  8. MisterOz_GatorLover
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    MisterOz_GatorLover Member

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    Mallory, this story should seem similar to you, as there were fans of Florida's rivals who harassed Tim Tebow and even went as far as sending him death threats. That is what I am kind of basing this off of, as well as the animosity teams not named Notre Dame greeted Jimmy Clausen with. Hence the name Jimmy. Recruiting is a big deal to schools like Iolani, who deny it but can't hide it. If somebody were to expose their deeds (including their players stalking girls), it would ruin the school's reputation. That's what happens to the Iolani villains at the end. They are judged harshly while everyone thinks of Iolani football players as thugs.

    And one more thing: are 12 main culprits too much in the case of Jimmy? Should I narrow it down? I am in the process of designating roles for the culprits.
     
  9. Mallory
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    Mallory Mallegory. Contributor

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    Come on - sure there's going to be people who send death threats to Tim Tebow, or Lady Gaga, or Natalie Portman or whoever... doesn't mean the "victims" aren't extremely popular.

    If you want to make Jimmy a popular dude who has a few dedicated and serious rivals causing him problems that get out of hand, sure. Believable. But making Jimmy a reject loser is not plausible at all.

    The only way I can see you pulling it off is if the opponent successfully frames him somehow -- if, say, he's accused of rape or child abuse or something and there's enough evidence to sell it to the public (even if not enough to convict him).
     
  10. MisterOz_GatorLover
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    MisterOz_GatorLover Member

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    Jimmy ain't a reject loser. I am sorry if something led you to believe that. He turns down Iolani's offer to admit him and has Punahou accept him. He gains the trust of almost every Punahou student (the only Punahou students who hate him are teenyboppers and pseudo-gangsters because he hazes them). He is in a relationship with a Punahou girl and has another relationship with a Punahou girl. As a member of Punahou, he is accepted. But Iolani kids can't stand him for several reasons. I can list all of them if you wish.
     
  11. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    A story concept means nothing. I can tell you now, it has all been done before. What matters is how you write it, the characterization, the flow, the imagery, all of it.

    There's 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?

    The same thing applies to character profiles. Chaqracters don't work or not work in isolation. Only in the context of a fully-written story can they be evaluated.

    The good news is that reworking the writing can make the difference between a story or a character that flops and one which shines.

    The "planning phase" is overrated, although it may help you decide on the major pivot points from the outset. It's the hard work from writing a first draft to polishing it into a snappy piece of writing that generates quality.
     

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