1. Welcome to Skyrim Forums! Register now to participate using the 'Sign Up' button on the right. You may now register with your Facebook or Steam account!
    Dismiss Notice

New around here, have a story to tell, unsure where

Discussion in 'Introductions' started by Klear, Oct 16, 2016.

  1. Klear

    Klear New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2016
    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    1
    Reputation:
    0
    Hello,

    I've recently started to do a roleplaying playthrough similar to Nondrick's Nonadventure, keeping a journal of sorts. The forums were I used to post it are rather spammy these days, though, and there's only a few people interested in it, so I decided to move it somewhere else - here.

    I'm a bit on the fence whether this should go in the fanfiction section or on the blog. The guidelines do say that character journals should go to the blog, but I feel playing the game is just incidental to writing the story. Plus the blog section looks a bit confusing to me.

    Additionally, I'd like to have people occasionally decide some things during the writing, and I'm not sure if the blog supports that well enough.

    You can look here to see what the story looks like so far. Thanks for your help!
     
    • Like Like x 1
  2. Kohlar the Unkilled

    Kohlar the Unkilled Time for some ale

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2013
    Messages:
    1,554
    Likes Received:
    1,142
    Reputation:
    2,909
    Greetings and welcome. :beermug:

    Took a quick look at your story and can already tell it'd be better suited to the fanfiction forum rather than the blog. Perhaps @Cordelia could make a recommendation. I've a blog series about my namesake character that I'll probably convert to fanfic at some point.

    I haven't made it very far but really like pics you include. So, going to finish reading your story because it's peaked my interest. :beermug:
     
  3. Klear

    Klear New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2016
    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    1
    Reputation:
    0
    Glad to hear you like it so far.

    I guess I'll start posting what I have tomorrow and maybe continue with a new update.

    Thanks!
     
  4. Kohlar the Unkilled

    Kohlar the Unkilled Time for some ale

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2013
    Messages:
    1,554
    Likes Received:
    1,142
    Reputation:
    2,909
    I like it! :beermug:

    I was thinking the abandoned house would be the perfect place for Al'feek's stash.
     
  5. Cordelia

    Cordelia Global Moderator
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2013
    Messages:
    434
    Likes Received:
    399
    Reputation:
    1,057
    Hello, Klear. Welcome to the forums. ^__^

    Your approach to how you tell Al'feek's story is definitely unique, but I'm afraid it still would be better suited to the blogs section than fan fiction.

    Personal character journals, like yours, often share a common theme, which is they tend to detail the literal journey of the character through the events of Skyrim, whether they follow the central Alduin narrative or not. It details meeting characters everyone meets, and doing tasks everyone does (or is at least aware of), and, since most people have played it for themselves, they aren't as captivated by seeing someone write what literally happened in the game without also seeing them add something of their own.

    Yes, the screen grabs are definitely you adding something of your own, as is including Al'feek's opinions on things, but a lot of what's told from Al'feek's perspective is still an objective record of "I went here and I saw this, and I did this."

    Even if we're talking about a character like Nondrick, the player/writer gives us more than the game offered, because he gave us the character's goals and personality in the first paragraph.

    "Anvil was pretty disappointing for adding to my meager fortune or even practicing my chosen profession of alchemy: the land around the city was mostly barren of ingredients and even the city shops were pretty empty of stuff to buy, mix, and resell. I feel like I need to make up for lost time and do some real hardcore gathering before I return home to Imperial City. I don’t want people just noticing my stained fingers and how they attest to my diligence in mixing potions and learning their secrets. I want people gawking at my stained fingers and how they attest to my diligence in mixing potions and learning their secrets."

    He builds an environment based on what you visually see in the game, but he gives it specific relevance by sharing the character's goals and desires. He perceived the market was hurting for ingredients (whether that's literally true, or just makes narrative sense doesn't necessarily matter), and the character's goal is to go gather ingredients. He takes pride in his work; he wants people to be impressed by what they see, and to know he puts in the time and effort to learn and create.

    This story is about the character, and it happens to take place in Tamriel.

    Most character journals are about the events of the game Skyrim, and happen to have a player character in them.

    That, in and of itself, is not a bad thing, however. Skyrim inspires us all in one way or another, and it keeps us coming back to it, and seeking others who feel the same. If it sparks your creativity to write and create, that's the best thing it can ever hope to do, and you're amazing for seizing that creative spark and actually doing something with it, because that's a hell of a lot more than many of us can say. I, myself, have plans for fan fiction that have just never gotten off the ground, so it doesn't matter how much it inspires me if I don't do anything with it, so you're already lightyears ahead of me. And you should be proud of what you've accomplished.

    I'm sorry the blogs are not as straightforward as they could be -- our admin, Harley, is aware the theme needs to be adjusted there from the old one to the new one, and is working on it, and that may help --, but they are the best home for your story the way it is right now.

    If you want help expanding it into something that would work in the fan fiction section, I and others would be more than willing to help you get it there. But if you're enjoying it as it is, there's no reason to change anything. You can put a link to your blog in your signature so posting anywhere on the forum can bring attention back to the blog, and that will help raise exposure and readership, which I doubt you'll have trouble raising or keeping.

    So, again, welcome to the forums. I really hope you enjoy staying with us, and I look forward to seeing more of Al'feek's adventures in your blog.
     
  6. Klear

    Klear New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2016
    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    1
    Reputation:
    0
    I'll do as you say, but I don't really understand your reasoning at all. If you were to argue based on the similarities with Nondrick's Nonadventure, I'd get it. It was, after all, published as a blog. Additionally, it's very much written from the point of view of a player roleplaying as Nondrick. There's hardly any fourth wall - he keeps talking about levels, quests and NPC's - and a lot of his planning is informed by the way the game works, rather than the thoughts of the character. And it's quite sad if you think Al'feek has less personality than a character that's capable of saying "Wait! I’m an NPC, not a… not a… running away… thing. I’ve seen plenty of NPCs fight foolishly to their own deaths! I should be no different. So, after running away for a while, I turn and stand my ground."

    I think it's also unfair to say that what I write is about the events of Skyrim rather than the character. Sure, some events from the game have to be mentioned. You can't avoid witnessing a murder when first enterting Markarth, and it's the kind of thing I will record because it's the kind of thing Al'feek would remember very well, but the quest that's attached to that ends there. The character's goal is to get high on Skooma at that point, not to get mixed up in some dangerous scheme.

    The point is that this is not me writing a journal about my playthrough that's constrained by roleplaying rules. I'm playing the game for the express reason of writing it up, taking every action in a way that will make for interesting writing. The difference from a normal fanfiction would be that I'm heavily using the game, let's say, for inspiration, rather than making up the story in its entirety, but that doesn't seem to be your issue with it, so I really don't understand.

    Maybe if you told me what you mean by "help expanding it into something that would work in the fan fiction section", that would clear things up. Ignoring how patronizing that sounds, since I'm sure that was unintentional, I don't think I'd want to change the story or the format to conform to on whatever distinction you're basing this, but I'm curious what precisely the distinction is. In any case, I'll be perfectly happy to post my work in the blog section.

    The signature thing isn't really useful, as I don't plan to be posting much outside of this. New forums usually suck me in pretty fast, but given that my posting will remain outside the boards themselves, and posting in random threads just to raise awareness of this journal would only make me feel like a living billboard, so I'll rather pass on that.
     
  7. Cordelia

    Cordelia Global Moderator
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2013
    Messages:
    434
    Likes Received:
    399
    Reputation:
    1,057
    When I suggested adding a link in your signature it was less about encouraging you to post for exposure, and more observing that if you're going to participate in general threads anyway, you could garner attention for your blog in the process.

    I definitely did not intend to sound patronizing, though I can see how I might have come across as such.

    I think it's unfair to suggest (intentionally or unintentionally) that those who write fan fiction are not using the game and its events as inspiration, because they definitively are.

    The literal definition of inspiration is "the process of being mentally stimulated to do or feel something, especially to do something creative". Being inspired does not require you to follow a set path with exacting detail, only to be moved by something, and often to use that emotion to create something. Inspiration can create a work that appears entirely unrelated to the source of inspiration, or it can create a work that sits right inside the original source of inspiration like the two are one, and a whole spectrum of possibilities in between, and none of them is any more or less valid than the others.

    Regardless, though, your story qualifies more as a character journal than a work of fan fiction because it is a detailed account of events that happen in the game, exactly as they happen, with little to no deviation.

    I understand this is an intentional choice, as you're letting the actual events of the game as you play it dictate the character's experiences, adventure, and general outlook on life and himself. Many players, writers, and role players do exactly that, as well. Using in-game events to drive your story is a fairly common practice. However, the way in which you have chosen to incorporate those events is more like a character journal than, as you say, normal fan fiction.

    What makes Nondrick's Nonadventure more like fan fiction than a strict character journal actually is the breaking of the fourth wall. Yes, it's a silly thing he wrote and played for silly reasons, but breaking the fourth wall for the purpose of commentary adds something to the literal events of the game that is not already present in the game's narrative or mechanics.

    You do not encounter a self-aware NPC that knows it is an NPC, living the life of an NPC, and commenting on its own life, or the existence of a player, or the various other things other NPC's do.

    Beyond that, the reasoning for the ruling has nothing to do with whether or not another story on another site was posted as a blog, or in a fan fiction section. It has to do with how much a story is written in journal format, and how closely it follows in-game events and encounters, or, conversely, how much the new story's events deviate from the in-game events and encounters.

    What I mean by this is not how much new material someone invents -- a cast of new characters and quests, locations, factions, histories, etc., until all you have is an original character and original story simply taking place in Skyrim more or less around the time of the Alduin events. When I say "deviation" or "not following the events closely", I mean the writer contributes enough of their own material that the focus is pulled off of the literal events of the game and put more heavily on the character's own experiences.

    The difference looks like this:

    A literal event: The Dragonborn absorbs the soul of a dragon in the Reach while it rains.

    A character journal of the event: I killed another dragon. In the battle I was knocked down the bank toward the river, but I climbed back up to approach the dragon and absorb its soul. Its soul swirled around me as I drew near, and I looked up at the sky as the rain fell down on me. Even though I felt stronger for having absorbed the soul, I wished I didn't have to kill them. I wished men and dragon could learn to live with each other in peace. I know wishing doesn't change it, though. And I vow not to let this sacrifice go to waste.

    A fan fiction account: (to avoid filling this response with a 300+ vignette, I'm linking it, instead) Dragon Soul.

    In the game, I battled a dragon in the Reach while it was misty rainy. When the dragon finally died, I had been knocked back toward the river and had to jump up to the level where the dragon was when it died. As the dragon soul entered the character, I made her look up at the sky. However, one entry is written in the format closer to that of a character journal, with limited elaboration or external detail, but colored with character opinion and some of their inner thoughts and opinions. The other entry is written in a way that tells you about the world, the events that happened, the character's state of mind and opinions, and the things currently happening in a way that doesn't require literally telling someone "this happened, and this is what it made me feel".

    I want to emphasize that neither method is better or worse than the other, and you have a very specific goal in mind with your work that I fully encourage. It's a very creative approach I haven't seen anyone on the forums attempt with their stories, and you're doing it well. But as it stands right now, you're doing a character journal very well, and that's why it goes in the blogs.

    As for helping to expand it for the fan fiction section, I don't at all mean taking away the images, or the effort you've put into it. It's more a matter of elaborating on the events you already have, and uniting them into a more linear narrative with a clear objective, and smooth transitions between events.

    For instance: In Day 1 of Al'feek's story, he goes from being in the canal to having met Shadr, to standing before Brynjulf's stall in the market, to being in the Bee and Barb with about a sentence used for transition to each.

    I think we can at least agree it does not read like something you would find in a novel. And, at its heart, whether you think someone has the quality in their writing to be published or not, fan fiction is in more of a novel-friendly format, with paragraphs involving description, and observation, and character opinion, and action all taking turns with each other to paint a larger picture that attempts to make sense whether you're looking at it in pieces, or as a whole.

    And not every story has to. I like what you're doing, and I like it for what it is. And I hope you at least understand the reasoning behind the ruling, but barring that, I appreciate you posting to the blogs anyway.

    And, even more than that, I sincerely hope that this being one of your first conversations on the forums doesn't put you off, or make you abandon the rest of the community. It really is an amazing community of amazing people if you give them a chance to interact with you. I would hate to rob you of the opportunity to meet them by giving you a negative experience from the start.
     
    Latest Given Reputation Points:
    lizardisok: 1 Point (Obviously you gotta have fun for the sake of fun.) Nov 1, 2017
  8. BlueBull

    BlueBull DovahBull

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2014
    Messages:
    100
    Likes Received:
    9
    Reputation:
    50
    Welcome
     

Share This Page

  • Like us on Facebook