Desiderius Price

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Everything posted by Desiderius Price

  1. Oh, name duplication does happen in real life. Got a number of alter egos if I do a goggle search on my own name, a lawyer, a director of a food company, a firefighter? etc. Even an occasional issue at work where there’s duplicates in the global org-wide email address list, if people don’t realize that my real legal first name *is* the short version, not the customary long version (an assumption that’s valid 85% ofthe time, but I’m not in that 85% group). Issue comes to writing a story, if you had a story full of John Smiths, how do you distinguish them to the reader? In a movie, it’s less problematic, because unless the actors looked the same, the viewer would get the drift. Another J example is that I have “Joe” as a major character (short for Joseph). His mother “Josephine”, those two, role wise are easier. However, a side character coming in was Joey, see where the confusion can come in? Especially if I fat finger the name while writing? You typically don’t want to (unintentionally) confuse the reader more than you have to. Of course, having a duplicate name might be a good plot point too, but you still need some distinction for the reader. Now, in my main potter fanfic, the perpetrator is making heavy use of Polyjuice (or an equivalent), impersonating Harry while doing nefarious deeds. However, makes it challenging because as the narrator, I don’t want to call the doppelganger “Harry”, so I’ll go “raven haired boy” or similar descriptions. It still comes to the same philosophy of not wanting to confuse the reader to what’s happening (aside from deliberate misdirection).
  2. I started to foul up on my originals … now I’m bit more aware. A substantial number had “J” as the first initial, became worse when a number started with “Ja” and you’d have to go to THREE letters in to get them any different. Too late to correct all of them, however, I’ve been trying to introduce nicknames for secondary characters. Too similar and the names blend together in the readers minds.
  3. For main characters, I put more thought into it. For side/background characters, I’m more likely to use a random name generator for guidance. (Trouble is, I’ll use create a side/background character, and *THEN* decide to center a story around them, well, I’m generally not renaming them.)
  4. Now at 66666 (AO3) hits on my potter fanfic!  Yay!

  5. Definitely *NOT* 100+ main characters in a single story – that’d be INSANE! Group is hundreds, but I’m not detailing them all. You’ll have the main characters, and lesser characters with names. Backstories allow me focus on some lesser characters, turning them into main characters for their backstory, and delve into the social regime they’re fleeing. That’s my underlying point, I think you’re on a path to totally confuse the reader. (It’s your story, of course.)
  6. TBH, that sounds like a *LOT* to digest in a single narrative. I had a similar issue with mine. Essentially, my *main* story is about the group of people escaping the planet (this one). What I had started to do was to try to write the backstory (as mega-flashbacks) to each ofthe characters of the group (over a hundred characters on this voyage). This is where confusion would reign. I’d talk about a particular person in the past tense (ie dead), but in the next chapter, that person would be alive given the flashback nature. (Even had a review that stated this issue… they were confused.) Thus, I split the stories off, and it was a GREAT decision even though I’ve yet to make any progress that main story. For instance, Alaska Trekkers was the first spin off, focused on two. To be fair, it almost reads like two stories by itself, the very strong “inciting incident” that sets up the conditions for the second part, the evolving social conditions which effectively pushed the two characters into joining the main quest. It’s now a 206kword story. From this story, I was able to create a halloween oneshot (The Phone) and a holiday oneshot (The Phone, Part II). Then, I was working on the backstory to the main protagonist of the main story, simply the evolving childhood of him and his friends, turning it into an episodic serialization. However, I realized I needed a swimming instructor for him, which led to Jefferey. YES, it’s a rabbit hole filled with plot bunnies. However, TBH, it’s quite fun and lets me explore aspects of this society the main group of people are fleeing, and why these characters are being persecuted, pressured into taking what could almost be described as a suicide pact (not their intent, because they’ll turn it into a chance to survive/thrive). Overall, I think this does better justice to each character. In the main story, might have some mention to their backstory, but I won’t have to go into three chapters of detail. (And it does create some interesting cross-overs between the backstories too.) My suggestion is that you do the same, peeling the flashbacks & backstory off into separate tales. Lets you focus each one onto a specific character. If a reader on the main story is curious about character X, they know where they can turn for the detailed backstory. BTW – the above is a suggestion, nothing more. Advice to avoid having a million word monster intimidating the reader away.
  7. I know I had offered at one point, however, that faded and I’ve been focusing more on my own world-building software assistant (ie, database + wiki + cool analytics). Not asking for new features, simply illustrating how I use the existing features to try to crack that same question. That is a can of worms, I’m not of fan of canceling/scrubbing-from-history of things I don’t agree with. I’ll err on the side of over-tagging instead of under-tagging. Though I’ll now categorize the tags in the opening of the story, noting which ones are more (CYA) and which ones are “features”/main-themes. I’d love to say I write fine in a vacuum, but I don’t. I do need that occasional pat on the back, the kudos, to keep the motivation. Otherwise, I’ll drift away with “got better things to do at the moment?” which morphs into “why bother?” and I move along. Thus, I record my dragon prints every so often, which helps, to a degree. What *does* help is that as I’ve been squeezing on the finances, it keeps other distracting hobbies at bay.
  8. Guess “appreciated” the effort I put in, is closer to the mark than “rave/love” it, and the gist is how to tease this out from the information at hand. A review/comment is definitely the gold star here, presumably they’ve read the material (aside from the flaming trolls). AO3’s kudos are an easy “like it” for the readers. Subscriptions/alerts hint they’re interested in the next installment. A public bookmark/favorite is an endorsement IMO. Even a private bookmark means they’re wanting to find it again (only AO3 seems to count those). Tallying dragon prints & hits is a last resort hint, because my stories don’t attract reviews.
  9. Once you said “three chapters of flashbacks”… sounded like a backstory spin-off was a good idea. And might still be... even if only to help with writing the flashback scenes. (Also means you don’t need a complete story in the flashbacks either… the reader can go off and enjoy those backstories too.) However, the flashback format can be good when you’ve got a character reflecting on their emotional state at the time, and the implications to the present – which I did for that holiday story. Not saying do “X” or do “Y’, simply food for thought.
  10. In my original story, I didn’t quote, so less apparent. And it covered the backstory to the main characters. However, went really fast and skimped greatly. Thus it became *way* better to spin it off into separate stories. As I was in fact doing several “flashbacks” to a lot of the characters, I realized spinning them off, make each character’s (or small group) backstory a separate story would do the whole thing justice. However, you’re right, doesn’t always work out that way. Now, you *could* still do the above as a separate backstory, in full. So, when the character needs to talk about themselves, you can cut it down to the essentials, or the like. Alternatively, a take I use in my potter fanfic, I basically start off… (small excerpt) Or, in one of my holiday oneshots, I did it as a flashback, the MC discussing a sin of his past to another. So for that, it’s dialogue back and forth as that other person asks questions.
  11. Moving the discussion on flashbacks with @Wilde_Guess here.
  12. “Don’t try this at home.  The police will have questions.”

    1. InvidiaRed


      Lol, thats what the desert is for :rolleyes:

    2. BronxWench
    3. kagome26isawsome


      as shultz used to say: i know nothing...NOTHING!!!