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  1. Linz

    Linz Active Member

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    So, my protag has just inherited an island

    Discussion in 'Research' started by Linz, Dec 18, 2018.

    Hi everyone.

    As per title, my protag's godmother has just snuffed it/dropped off this mortal coil/departed for the afterlife and left him her private island, and (he doesn't know this yet as the letter/will just mentions the island and everything on it but. . .) there's a mansion in its own grounds that he's also inherited.

    Very generous of her, but both have been neglected. Now, I have a fair idea of the kind of condition the house might be in - it's badly in need of repair, but I'm drawing a blank when it comes to the island itself.

    Obviously, it'll be overgrown, but I feel like there's something missing.

    Any ideas?

    Disclaimer: I have posted this on another writing site, in case anyone from there recognises it.
     
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  2. Veltman

    Veltman Active Member

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    From what I gather, island ecosystems are very complicated, particularly if the island is small and remote. I expect an infestation of some kind, or a population of a certain animal to be out of control. I could be wrong as I'm no specialist on the matter though.

    Why is the island neglected? What drew people away from it?
     
  3. Artifacs

    Artifacs Senior Member

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    As for the island, like @Veltman has pointed out, the island could be a little mess in terms of native biosphere. This usually occurs in direct proportion to its size and is also tweaked by age, origin (volcanic, arched rifts, artificial, etc) and location (ocean, sea and latitude).

    Once you've stablished the location, you'll probably find more detail level to think about, like climate erosion, overgrown and invader species.
    Also, other fictional possibilities according location may be considered, like modern pirates or near oil 'clandestine' platforms or something like that.
     
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  4. Linz

    Linz Active Member

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    It is small, too small to show up on any map, although I've no idea of the overall size of it (this is the prequel to one of my finished works, so I'm more used to how the island will look in Book 2, as opposed to how it looks "now").

    As for why it was neglected, I haven't really thought that through yet, but I'm guessing Godmother had something to do with it.

    Then again, as I mention below, it is volcanic in origin, so that could be as simple as an eruption scare.


    Origin: volcanic. Mega-rich protag will be employing/encouraging a permanent/semi permanent team of volcanologists (sp?) to keep an eye on it.

    Location: Atlantic, but closer to the Bay of Biscay than Britain and Ireland. (Probably goes without saying, but the island itself is entirely fictional).
     
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  5. Cave Troll

    Cave Troll Contributor Contributor

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    Castaway-island1-640x480.jpg
    "Uh, wheres the mansion?"
    "It might be under the tree."
    "Oh, yeah that makes sense, they did say there was a bit
    of over growth."
    "Yes, but the fishing potential is high."
    :)
     
  6. Artifacs

    Artifacs Senior Member

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    The Island can be a fictional extension of the Azores Islands https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Azores. These are volcanic and you can take flora and fauna data out of them for some ideas.

    If you want to make the volcanic activity around the island a possible hazard/menace, you always can invent a tiny fictional rift in the MidAtlantic Plate containing a hydrothermal vent near the island. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hydrothermal_vent.
    This could be appropiate for a mystery settting (weird sounds and quakes, sudden hypersalinity in the water that turns crazy local marine species, eerie phantom colors over the water at night due the phosphorus and sulphur coming up from the deeps, not to mention that the abyssal fauna around the island is already weird by its own right: anglerfish, rattails and , of course, giant squids).

    The Gulf Stream would dominate the climate in the island: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gulf_Stream
     
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  7. Mckk

    Mckk Member Supporter Contributor

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    For whatever reason, you just reminded me of the time when my RPG character in Baldur's Gate 2 helped eradicate monsters from a particular mansion, and at the end of it he becomes a Lord. My character was then officially called Lord I'Ma T'Ree.

    :supergrin:

    I'm sorry my post wasn't more useful.
     
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  8. MusingWordsmith

    MusingWordsmith Shenanigan Master Contributor

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    Is this solidly going to be a 'realism' story or are you going to pull in more fantasy/supernatural elements?
     
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  9. Linz

    Linz Active Member

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    There is a subtle paranormal theme that runs through the series. Protag and his love interest are soulmates, and I play with the more spiritual aspect of that connection in Book 2 (6th sense/telepathy, and souls going walkabout type of thing), but I haven't introduced any ghosts or things like that yet.
     
  10. MusingWordsmith

    MusingWordsmith Shenanigan Master Contributor

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    Okay, so if there is elements like that in your book-world, perhaps there's something supernatural about the island as well? Maybe it has to do with the reasons Grandma left and never came back. Food for thought!
     
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  11. Shenanigator

    Shenanigator Has the Vocabulary of a Well-Educated Sailor. Contributor

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    Do some research to find out if crabs would be on your island. One of the things I learned while reading a research team's findings of "the Castaway Theory" in the disappearance of Amelia Earhart was that some species of small crabs will eat anything they can find on an uninhabited island, which can be destructive. Being the size of spiders or tarantulas, they're creepy too, and can devour a wounded victim alive, including bone, leaving very few remains.
     
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  12. Some Guy

    Some Guy Manguage Langler Supporter Contributor

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    I don't see a disruption of the eco-system. Rather, a resurgence(?). Vines would grow right through the house. Native animals, birds and primates, shade loving critters. With typical fauna, critters would be trapped for predation, so I doubt many small edibles. Perhaps vines could grow in, wither from lack of sunlight, and die within, like nature feared the place, or some paranormal prescence was casting within. I'd find it more intriguing if the roof were intact, the structures and wallpaper/decor undisturbed, as if it was waiting...
     
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  13. The Dapper Hooligan

    The Dapper Hooligan (V) ( ;,,;) (v) Contributor

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    When I was a kid, there was a family I knew through our church that bought a small island to put a summer cottage on. The island was basically a glorified sand bar in the middle of a lake, and when they put the cabin on it, the whole thing started to sink. For about 5 years they fought nature by importing fill from a nearby sand pit, but last time I saw the cottage, it was about half submerged and we were only out there to strip it of the copper wiring and the solar panels. The next spring it and the island both disappeared for good when the ice went out.
     
  14. ChickenFreak

    ChickenFreak Contributor Contributor

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    A minor nitpick--I think an island too small to show on ANY map is probably too small to hold a mansion. Maps show some pretty small stuff.
     
  15. Some Guy

    Some Guy Manguage Langler Supporter Contributor

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    So the small island is already well established in previous fiction? Is how you find it revealed? Is it something more like Lost?
     
  16. Linz

    Linz Active Member

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    Well established, yes, but how the characters found it, no. It's about 8 or 9 years into the future from the current novel. Protags are married and the island is their home. But they don't live in the mansion - that's turned into a hotel and spa, while the protags live in a villa they build into the cliff face on the north side of the island.

    Ah! Well, perhaps not that small, but forgotten. :)
     
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  17. LoaDyron

    LoaDyron Contributor Contributor

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    Hello, my friend, :superhello:

    I do agree with MusingWordsmith point of view. That extra paranormal touch could be an interesting idea. I will suggest adding this to your island. Like Silent Hill, that reveals what your characters must inner desires. While in the video game the town reveals dark desires, fears: your island can help your characters. For example, let's suppose your male protagonist is very shy, and this leads him most of his time to not know how to express himself adequately, this can explain why sometimes he avoids confrontation or doesn't answer. While going to this island, his female love interest will be revealed to her, why he is so insecure and may suffer a psychological illness. If you still have some questions about this video game, please do not hesitate to ask me, I will gladly give you all the information you need. I hope this helps. Keep on good work, and have fun :superagree:
     
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  18. Some Guy

    Some Guy Manguage Langler Supporter Contributor

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    Are you trying to describe the island itself?
     
  19. Linz

    Linz Active Member

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    Yeah, mainly.

    I have my protag, his LI, and a couple of their friends, standing on the beach with their backs to the ocean, and I'm trying to come up with what they'd see around them. "Overgrown" just doesn't seem like enough of a challenge - especially not as he's wealthy enough to just hire in a team of gardeners/landscapers and let them loose on it.

    Protag isn't quite that shy, although he is introverted. But, that has, in a roundabout way, given me an idea of the paranormal element of the island.

    Thanks, :)
     
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  20. Some Guy

    Some Guy Manguage Langler Supporter Contributor

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    Well, let's just say volcanic, inactive(?), collapsed. As the magma recedes, the chamber falls in. It usually takes some of the side with it, so that's beach when it settles and time and sand do their work (harbor, and flat inland). That gives you cliffs on a different side if , say, a section sheered straight down (tsunami, lookout hominids!) and gave you a high wall. If high enough, you'll catch rain for water (waterfall, stream, spring, lagoon, hydro-power). You can then make plauseable any biome, jungle, rainforest, arid. Pigs were rampant in nearly all trade-route islands, so there would be at least some. As far as gardeners, look at early island colonies. Goats will eat anything down, etc, even clear out the house! Anything that can be spayed (and prey on critters til it dies out) will take out vermin. Maybe build a house for some locals to homestead in exchange for service. Have an old 15th century church ruin, to make the above plauseable, even convenient. :)
     
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  21. Linz

    Linz Active Member

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    Awesome. I love this idea. Thank you. :D
     
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  22. Some Guy

    Some Guy Manguage Langler Supporter Contributor

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    Just building blocks for thought. As far as the history of the island in TC and it's people, it comes later... :)
     
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  23. Cdn Writer

    Cdn Writer Contributor Contributor

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    Google: Private Islands for Sale/Rent

    It was also shown on the tv channel HGTV in Canada and some shows should be available on YouTube. Very cool....but it is reality TV so some things are dramatized to build suspense. The show's I saw were the 30 minute ones.
     

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