What are you writing?!

seitora

Well-Known Member
#1
I still can't believe it, but I actually have 2000 words started on an erotica fic. It'll be about a witch who summons lesser animal gods for rituals and of course sexy times occur.

I've got about 10k words but too much world building on another story, where the world has a sentient planet and all the continent s are all close to each other, only a few million years after a Pangaea breakup
 

Fellgrave

Well-Known Member
#2
12k words for my Post-Cyberpunk Tron/Matrix/SAO story, which finishes out the intro story arc. Plus I have it roughed out for the next two arcs after that. Then I think there'll either be another arc, or I'll separate it into two stories to finish it.

Then I've started outlining an Urban Fantasy story, which brings a character from the mostly mundane world fully into the supernatural side of things by the end of it.

And then I've got about 23k of pure world-building and setting for a full D&D Fantasy story, made over the last four and half years.
 

seitora

Well-Known Member
#3
I managed to add another 1000 words onto my erotica. Still no sex scene...
 

zerohour

Well-Known Member
#4
seitora said:
I managed to add another 1000 words onto my erotica. Still no sex scene...

Clearly, you're doing somethign wrong.

Got a few rough draft copies of my book and I'm circulating them to friends and family. Hoping to get their thoughts and opinions and then I can start doing revisions.
 

seitora

Well-Known Member
#5
Well, done that erotica, around 7500-8000 words pre-editing. The sex scenes make up about 3500 of that. I'm intent on digitally publishing this, so I need to edit and do a cover, and I'm looking to incorporate as well since I like an extra layer of anonymity between my pen name and my real name.
 

seitora

Well-Known Member
#6
And just like that, started work on another one. 1500 words so far.
 

AJ_Katon

Well-Known Member
#7
Trying to make a coming of age alt universe story. 16k words in and only halfway done.
 

Contrabardus

Well-Known Member
#8
66.5 K words into a slice of life/magical girl comedy set in central Florida. It draws from a lot of stuff, but at it's most basic the premise is somewhat similar to Sailor Moon. It parodies Magical Girls in general though.

The Fountain of Youth will be a plot element eventually, and not because anyone uses it to become younger. Magical energy and dimensional barriers are involved. Thinking about maybe trying to publish it when it's done. It gets into some of the girl stuff that I've never seen a gender swapping anime actually deal with. Not just talking about the monthlies, but that too.

I'm using some of my original characters from some of my fanfics. Gaijin most notably. Gia is in it so far, but Spike will eventually show up. Kei is going to be the protagonist's annoying cousin. A lot of original characters as well. The best friend is a Korean girl who is inspired by Deadpool somewhat. She talks a lot and ends up thinking she's in a manga and/or anime and will probably do some fourth wall breaks. I'm using my version of Luna as well, she gets a head injury and basically the same thing happens.

The bad guys in the position of Beryl's generals are all members of a popular boy band. It's a sort of deal with the devil kind of thing. The Tuxedo Mask stand in is a former member of the band who didn't become evil and is loosely based on Justin Timberlake.

It's going to take a while to finish it, but I'm a good way into it and keeping up with it. I've been wanting to write something original that I might be able to publish for a long time, but the fanfics I was writing always kind of took up all my writing time. Now, I've been not writing fanfics anyway and decided to just buckle down and do this rather than write more of them.

Edit: Posted my current draft here in the proper section.
 

goldenarms

Well-Known Member
#9
Developing a story about a lawyer who is married to an artist whose work kidnaps him, forcing the lawyer to dive into an Alice-esque world in order to save him. However, before she can meet the queen holding him hostage, she'll have to confront challenges that will have her questioning the state of not just her marriage, but of herself.

So far, I've cemented the main character's look, but still fiddling around with the circumstances that brought things to this state of disrepair before I tackle the world she'll have to go crashing through if she's going to be successful.
 

Contrabardus

Well-Known Member
#10
goldenarms said:
Developing a story about a lawyer who is married to an artist whose work kidnaps him, forcing the lawyer to dive into an Alice-esque world in order to save him. However, before she can meet the queen holding him hostage, she'll have to confront challenges that will have her questioning the state of not just her marriage, but of herself.

So far, I've cemented the main character's look, but still fiddling around with the circumstances that brought things to this state of disrepair before I tackle the world she'll have to go crashing through if she's going to be successful.
Sounds interesting and a similar style of fantasy has been cropping up recently. Hulu's "What Lives Inside" comes to mind about a serious guy who ends up in a magical world his deceased father turned into a children's show. It's pretty cool and very short with each episode coming in around ten minutes.

I think this premise would work best if it ends with an "was it a dream or not?" kind of ending where she's not sure, but maybe has learned something from the ordeal either way.
 

~NGD OMEGA~

Well-Known Member
#11
Well not going to lie, this is the first time I've really explored this section, and this is mostly because the idea I've currently been ruminating on is pretty much not based on any other particular series outright, instead mostly based on a certain trend we've been seeing a lot in Manga with Fantasy series coming out with some sort of Meta Element involved. The usual execution of this trope is naturally the one where a hero is summoned from a more normal world like ours and he comes with certain game mechanics involved like status screens, inventories or whatnot.

Well thanks to one particular series which summoned multiple heroes, one of which was highly interesting, I suddenly realized that this idea can be used in a more interesting way instead. What if, in one of these scenarios, the one who is summoned is an Old Man with no idea of how game mechanics work. The idea naturally took off from there.

The initial premise by itself naturally isn't enough to build a story off of, of course, but it's certainly something interesting to get the ball rolling. A lot of world building would have to be involved to make the story and scenario interesting, and indeed the fact that he's an old man can't just be used to explain why he hasn't been trying to figure out how to upgrade his skills and whatnot.

So I decided this would have to be more of a story driven on the character of the Old Man himself, which naturally meant building off of something a lot of these series with this sort of premise miss. A lot of the situations and motivations of this old man would have to be driven on the world he'd left behind, meaning over the course of the tale we'd have to learn more about who he was there to understand why he is who he is here in this situation. His family, his life, his hobbies are all factors that can be explored going from that world to this one.

For example, why was the old man summoned at all? Maybe play up the fact that it seems like the summon was meant for his Grandson instead, but due to an unfortunate sense of timing, he's the one who ended up getting pulled through himself. Nothing major certainly, but definitely a factor to consider as he goes through and faces so many troubles trying to save this world and realizes that his grandson would have had to deal with this instead had things gone as planned.

Why does he choose to group together with the people he meets along the way? Maybe they remind him of people he's lost over his life span. I won't lie, part of the joke I wanted with the 'party' he forms is that he's technically the youngest person there thanks to Fantasy Species mechanics and other oddities. Our lead is 83, and he will eventually party with an Elf Paladin who is 107, a Dwarf Alchemist who is 98, a demon possessed Coliseum escapee with a perchance for thievery who is 89, and a boy Archer of 13 who'd been frozen in time since the years of the previous summonings over 170 years ago.

That last one would have been a party member of a previous hero who would have to try and remember how he did things from his very hazy memory from his freezing and the fact that the Hero then was explaining things he pretty much does not have any context for. His input would help the old man discover things he doesn't know about how game mechanics work, but wouldn't needless to say resolve everything.

Mentally obviously the old man would probably be the oldest of the group in line with his appearance compared to the rest who all look in their prime baring the kid, but technically speaking, everyone else would have been around longer than him to say the least, in one form or another.

And while the party will be a key factor in the story, world building obviously is also going to be essential here to drive the tale. To make things interesting, I kinda wanted to drive it in a way similar to the story that inspired this, rather than a set of spells everyone can learn everyone of sufficent ability develops a particular power they have a knack for, which the lead's power interprets as a skill tree of sorts, where they can slowly unlock tangential abilities related to that main ability, but they all tend to follow a general theme.

For example the Elf Paladin? Her knack I wanted to be for creating solid electric weapons for herself. She doesn't carry around a massive heavy broadsword, she just summons a huge one made of lightning to cut and electrify with. Tangential abilities would include being able to slash out electric blasts with it, increase her speed even in her armor using electromagnetism, electrify her armor so anything that touches it will receive a shock, throw electro daggers at foes, and summon a big massive spear of lightning to hurl at enemies from afar.

Dwarf Alchemist makes potions and whatnot to help heal and buff the party (Which becomes more useful once the lead figures out how the inventory works), but his main gimmick is general alchemy with earth and metal. Any of it he touches or connects via symbols, he can move or alter the structure of. His ability requires a bit of setup but he could do things like sudden generate spikes from the ground, turn mud into solid rock for better footing, crumble the ground he runs over to trip up foes, launch out projectiles from a safe distance, and stuff like that. Plus with the Elf's electro power this means he can also create metal lightning rods to help better direct her power.

The Time Displaced boy's power is pretty simple, basically the ability to multiply any inanimate object of limited size that he touches within his general area, the generated objects still retaining the momentum and direction of the original object. Any object he generates with this ability will naturally disappear with time, but needless to say the utility of this for a bow user once properly upgraded is quite obvious, doubly so when the alchemist can make explosive shots and stuff for him. He literally only needs one copy of each type of arrow and he's basically set, never needing to fire a real one while being able to fire out a dozen at once with one shot. Can even use the ability defensively with a small buckler, to create a wall of them to block return fire and physical blows, and hell mutiply earth or metal the dwarf touched to help him set up traps.

Demon Possessed girl, not going to lie, is based around that Ripple ability I made that I love, which is the power to treat space like water. This leads to fun things like her being the go to teleporter between towns once she gains that tangential ability, the ability to cause 'space quakes' with physical blows to deal devastating armor ignoring damage, divert projectiles by causing space to ripple and bend in a different direction, and warp around the area with quick movements, even kick the ground to cause space to ripple out from that contact point and slam foes into the ground as the ripple reaches them. Her key synergy is that she can bend space in areas around the fight that cause projectile attacks to divert and potentially hit foes they otherwise would have missed.

As for the old guy, initially at its weakest form it would seem like a simple strength/durability upgrade in key situations, but once he finds his skill tree screen and discovers the skill tree screen he's got quite a few points stored up for the utility will increase quite a bit. Got a name for this one, Soul Echo, an ability that increases in strength when taking an action replicated from repeated experience/strength of the memories. So while you can say a person has only thrown a punch so often in their life, doing more simple things like taking a step? Tapping his cane against the ground? Swatting dust off a piece of paper? Quite a bit of difference to say the least. Doubly so when granted the tangential ability to project this outside his body, use it to slowly heal injuries of himself and others with contact, reinforce his body so his old age doesn't screw him as much, and so on.

With that covering the general abilities of the group, another thing I was considering was language. Specifically going to a fantasy world language is generally going to be an odd thing to gloss over. It's another world afterall, bit of a coincidence if they all speak the same. Therefore I added it as one of the special properties of 'Summoned' the ability to generally understand any language, written or spoken in the world. Needless to say the utility of this is quite a bit high for archeological purposes beyond just the speaking to others thing, but also allows me to introduce interesting group dynamics.

Like the Demon Possessed Girl who escaped from the coliseum life she'd been in for 80 years? Never learned to speak the general language. Instead she has a relatively simple language she really only spoke with to the demon prior to this and only limited commands from the general language outside of that. The old man however? Can understand her just fine, though she speaks a bit simply. The others in the group, not so much.

The Time Displaced boy? Languages can change quite a bit over centuries, so while the others in the group can get the picture, the Old Man will have that buffed quite a bit out for him.

Dwarven and Elven languages the two non-humans will sometimes lapse to? Understands that just fine too.

As for the big overarching plot, I didn't want to do a simple story with them going to defeat the demon king, so instead a war situation seemed to make a bit more sense, doubly so since I can introduce down the line that the other countries may also be using summoned to do leg work only they can do. Monsters would still be involved naturally, but it's less directly about them than you'd usually see from this sort of thing. Instead, I wanted to rip a bit from SotC in a sense. Summoned are the only ones who can enter special zones with a limited number of people where special monsters reside, which can be controlled with a particular object only they can bring out. Once it's out of that special zone however, they can then give it to whoever they want to use.

Needless to say that's every bit as bad as it sounds, and obviously there's a reason these objects are locked away in a place where no one who resides in this world can naturally reach, but allows us to build up the importance of the summoned to each group involved, given them something difficult to overcome, and add a goal all in one.

Doubly so when that goal changes from collect the controlling objects to 'destroy the super weapons' instead, which leads to the user to turn into something worse, so then the end game accidentally creates a demon king by total accident.


Well that's about all I got thus far, baring key plot moments I've cooked up involving the elements above. Seems like a fun idea all around, not sure if I'll ever do more with it than play with it though. Has potential certainly however, just not sure if I'll be able to see where it goes.
 

seitora

Well-Known Member
#12
A random-ass idea of mine:

Something I'm writing is exclusively humans, no other races. I wanted to throw a few 'easter eggs' I guess that you won't notice unless you read really carefully. For some reason, I got my head stuck on giving my humans six fingers (and toes) instead of five on each hand. I figure there'd be like MAYBE three or four lines that actually reveal this (like maybe a guy loses two fingers and later he says he has four on his hand).

This would be combined with the people in-story using a Base 12 system, which again wouldn't be obvious, but if you take the numbers people throw out in story and add them up, you would realise the math doesn't work out in Base 10, only Base 12 (the inference being that because they had 12 fingers, they came up with Base 12. Base 10 hasn't always been the case in human history, but even Babylon's Base 60 could be done on hands.
 

seitora

Well-Known Member
#14
Well, as I mentioned, it would be mostly* irrelevant to the actual plot, but it'd be something careful reading could pick up. Like hidden cultural references and so on

*I say mostly because again, they would be using a base 12 system, but it wouldn't be used to really outright trick the readers, like saying something takes 20 days in-story and at a pivotal point it's revealed that this means 24 days to our sensibilities
 

Azure

Well-Known Member
#15
Lately I have been toying with the idea of writing a magical girl story from the perspective of the villains for fun, basic set up is that the protagonist's faction got defeated in war against another magical country in the past and got sealed in a dark dimension alongside their god. The dimension they got sealed in was unsuitable for human life, so their tree god sacrificed itself to provide for the sealed country and also gave them minions/monsters - the version of the youma. Somehow by providing part of their life energy to their god and the god providing food and minions for those sealed, they managed to keep their civilization going with some difficulties in an extremely harsh environment.

Thus they manage to keep going for a thousand years barely surviving, until the magic that sealed starts breaking away and suddenly they can try to return to the real world which is our modern world. The plan is to send covert minions to drain enough life power from the people there to revive the god, and allow everybody in the country to return to the real world.
Rushing into the open to drain people would be faster, but surely their enemy still is there and will surely rise to fight them if they are too open, so they have to take the slow and steady approach. The real problem is that the four generals that rule the country don’t really trust each other to have one of them direct the infiltration mission to Earth, so they get a new guy, our protagonist, to become an expendable fifth general to lead their forces and revive their god.

Basically it's a subversion to the setup of Sailor Moon, with the Dark General protagonist having to deal with the magical girls who are stronger than him fighting his operations and the fear that his fellow generals will try to kill him, but being unable to leave because he has to stay to save his homeland while also feeling conflicted about this whole mess. I want to do something like this because I want a story about someone caught in a hard position and trying his best to balance things to make it work somehow, and barely scraping by.
 

daniel_gudman

KING (In Land of Blind)
Staff member
#16
Rather than a "Fifth General", maybe a Knight Class that's intermediate between the Generals and the mass of mooks?

So the Protagonist is one of several Knights, and is uncomfortable that the Knight Corps is being divided into fiefs under each General, and lacks the unified Camraderae that existed under the Dark God. So the Knights who should be working together on various schemes, are instead pitted against each other.

Add a sense of responsibility towards the subordinate monsters, and I think that could work pretty well.
 

zerohour

Well-Known Member
#17
Hm... if they're trying to be covert about it, I could see one of them writing an evil manga/webcomic that drains a small amount of life force from the reader.  Not enough to hurt them, but they probably need a bit more sleep than usual.  I could see it being the start of a heroes with bad publicity scheme when the magical grirls try to stop him, or a guy that gets too into his story and kind of forgets about his actual purpose there.  Might turn into a brick joke when it turns out he has gathered more than enough life force, but wants to finish the massive intricate story arc before reviving the great god.

My question is what is up with the magical girls?   Are they completely unaware of the attack at first, or have they been raised to be ever vigilant for the return of the evil empire?  The way you decide will greatly affect how the story ends up developing.

Also, if you want more feedback, the ideas thread might be a bit better.
 

Azure

Well-Known Member
#18
daniel_gudman said:
Rather than a "Fifth General", maybe a Knight Class that's intermediate between the Generals and the mass of mooks?
While on paper our protagonist is on the same rank as his fellow generals, in practice the other Generals will treat the protagonist as a mid-boss/Knight who is in charge of the troops in the real world and to balance his superiors to get thing done.

So why then is the protagonist still technically a General still? Well that's because General more than a military/political position is also a role that comes with certain unique powers that was given to the protagonist by the Dark God. The Generals have a certain function in the ceremony to revive the Dark God, and the Fight General is a sign that the Dark God will revive soon.

But to the 4 generals, basically one day their dead god woke up from it's coma and assigned this random young guy who is not even in his 20s as their new co-worke,r and then went back to sleep completely ignoring them. They feel angry because it not only tarnishes the memory of the previous General who held the role, but it also upsets their plans and the balance the 4 generals had with each other (more exactly, each reacts differently to the idea, but that's the gist).

Sending the protagonist to deal with the invasion was a clean way to avoid a mess and  a neat political solution that mainly worked to solve a lot of problems in one go.

daniel_gudman said:
So the Protagonist is one of several Knights, and is uncomfortable that the Knight Corps is being divided into fiefs under each General, and lacks the unified Camraderae that existed under the Dark God. So the Knights who should be working together on various schemes, are instead pitted against each other.

Well for the protagonist the 4 Generals have been divided for so long that to him it's a fact of life (it's been a 1000 years you know, and he was born into this rule), so at first he just accepts this and later on he grows to want to help get the 4 Generals to really work together for the sake of the country.

While the 4 Generals are basically divided into two big factions mainly in conflict over how to handle the invasion, each one dislikes the protagonists for their own reasons, and some are more willing to play ball and give the protagonist a chance to prove himself than others. One thing that I want to do is that while each General might oppose the protagonist and the others, they didn't get to keep their country running a 1000 years by being completely stupid, so they are able to compromise and work together if they think the pros outweigh the cons. In the end each one wants the empire to succeed, they just fight because they think their method is the best and the only one that will work.

The thing I want is that while the politics should be simple enough to follow, they should be nuanced enough that you have something more than the Generals antagonizing the protagonist just because they hate him (even if that's part of their motivation). That way that internal politics angle has more weight since the choices the protagonist makes are not that simple and will have consequences.

daniel_gudman said:
Add a sense of responsibility towards the subordinate monsters, and I think that could work pretty well.
Yeah that will be one of the key motivations for the protagonist, the idea will be that the combination of his responsibility to his subordinates, his loyalty for his country which he thinks can still improve and his love for his family and friends in the Sealed Kingdom is the reason why he still stays loyal even if the job is hard.

zerohour said:
Hm... if they're trying to be covert about it, I could see one of them writing an evil manga/webcomic that drains a small amount of life force from the reader.  Not enough to hurt them, but they probably need a bit more sleep than usual.  I could see it being the start of a heroes with bad publicity scheme when the magical grirls try to stop him, or a guy that gets too into his story and kind of forgets about his actual purpose there.  Might turn into a brick joke when it turns out he has gathered more than enough life force, but wants to finish the massive intricate story arc before reviving the great god.
Something like that probably would work, except that the gains with such a subtle methods would small, and even if they are wide spread enough they would not be enough to fulfill the quota the MC should harvest so he would be forced to do more open strategies to drain more life force.

Slow and subtle strategies have their place, but I want to avoid giving the protagonist the option to just turtle up until he is strong enough to just steam roll everything. I feel that forcing the protagonist to do the riskier choices meet his goals, will make things more tenser and interesting in the long run, and give us a chance to keep the conflict live.

zerohour said:
My question is what is up with the magical girls?   Are they completely unaware of the attack at first, or have they been raised to be ever vigilant for the return of the evil empire?  The way you decide will greatly affect how the story ends up developing.
Well the current idea is that basically the magical girls are on a S2. Their leader sacrificed herself to defeat the big bad of another evil force a few months ago, and the team has broken off since then. Some remain vigilant and still patrol the city, while others just ignore the magical girl thing and are living their lives. As a whole the team is fractured, and they will need to replace their fallen leader with someone else before they can be as strong as they were before.

Not only does this set up why the protagonist will be able to set up his plans in the city, but it also introduced a newbie magical girl as an antagonist, which would not only be a starter antagonist but also serve as a contrast to our villain.


zerohour said:
Also, if you want more feedback, the ideas thread might be a bit better.
I will make a thread after I consolidate some of my notes (mostly a bunch of ideas that need a lot of work) and just write them out on the PC (I just have physical stuff right now). Is there something I should concentrate on nailing down before I start an idea thread?
 

daniel_gudman

KING (In Land of Blind)
Staff member
#19
Azure said:
So why then is the protagonist still technically a General still? Well that's because General more than a military/political position is also a role that comes with certain unique powers that was given to the protagonist by the Dark God. The Generals have a certain function in the ceremony to revive the Dark God, and the Fight General is a sign that the Dark God will revive soon.
You might consider splitting those into two different titles
"General  of the Dark Army" that is a military rank,
and
"Pillar of the Dark God" (or something), that is a participant in the "Revival of the Dark God" Ritual
And then what happens is, traditionally those two titles go hand-in-hand, where you always hold both at the same time, but it's technically possible to split them out.

So your protag is appointed as a "Pillar of the Dark God", but then there's friction because his actual military rank is something like "Captain" or maybe "Lt Colonel"; so there's political debate about whether he should be promoted to General even though he's not there yet career-wise, or whether they should break the tradition of "Pillars" always being selected from the "Generals."

Now you could present that political debate as being decided by the time the narrative picks up (eg, the debate about whether to promote him was decided as "yes", possibly shown in a flashback at some point), but I think that sort of distinction would be useful to make it clear to the reader why it's a problem and make it easy for different people to explain their position in a way that's easy for the reader to follow.



While the 4 Generals are basically divided into two big factions mainly in conflict over how to handle the invasion, each one dislikes the protagonists for their own reasons, and some are more willing to play ball and give the protagonist a chance to prove himself than others. One thing that I want to do is that while each General might oppose the protagonist and the others, they didn't get to keep their country running a 1000 years by being completely stupid, so they are able to compromise and work together if they think the pros outweigh the cons. In the end each one wants the empire to succeed, they just fight because they think their method is the best and the only one that will work.
I would make the "factions" an institutional split, like how there's friction between modern military branches like the Army and the Navy.

So for example there's the "Marines" that are really strong monsters (eg, the second half of the season) who think they should invade with open warfare, and the "Spies" who are shapeshifters who want to do the Secret Infiltration thing.

Then the "Marines" faction could be the traditionalists who insisted that the Protag got promoted, while the more flexible "Spies" wanted to break tradition and leave him at a lower rank.

As an added layer, he's replacing the "Spy General" that got whacked by the Magical Girls in the climax of Season One, who deceived them into thinking that he was the only General so they would let their guard down if he was defeated. So the people in the same "spy" branch as him that he's working with resent him being there, while he's paradoxically got more support from the force that he's on the rival side of.
 

Azure

Well-Known Member
#20
daniel_gudman said:
Azure said:
So why then is the protagonist still technically a General still? Well that's because General more than a military/political position is also a role that comes with certain unique powers that was given to the protagonist by the Dark God. The Generals have a certain function in the ceremony to revive the Dark God, and the Fight General is a sign that the Dark God will revive soon.
You might consider splitting those into two different titles
"General  of the Dark Army" that is a military rank,
and
"Pillar of the Dark God" (or something), that is a participant in the "Revival of the Dark God" Ritual
And then what happens is, traditionally those two titles go hand-in-hand, where you always hold both at the same time, but it's technically possible to split them out.

So your protag is appointed as a "Pillar of the Dark God", but then there's friction because his actual military rank is something like "Captain" or maybe "Lt Colonel"; so there's political debate about whether he should be promoted to General even though he's not there yet career-wise, or whether they should break the tradition of "Pillars" always being selected from the "Generals."

Now you could present that political debate as being decided by the time the narrative picks up (eg, the debate about whether to promote him was decided as "yes", possibly shown in a flashback at some point), but I think that sort of distinction would be useful to make it clear to the reader why it's a problem and make it easy for different people to explain their position in a way that's easy for the reader to follow.
Thanks, this gives me a good idea on how to hopefully find good ways to present the political conflict and why they would oppose the protagonist getting the position. The argument about how qualified he is for the position is a good argument that somehow had escaped me when thinking about things, when it should have been one of the first things asked. I guess


daniel_gudman said:
While the 4 Generals are basically divided into two big factions mainly in conflict over how to handle the invasion, each one dislikes the protagonists for their own reasons, and some are more willing to play ball and give the protagonist a chance to prove himself than others. One thing that I want to do is that while each General might oppose the protagonist and the others, they didn't get to keep their country running a 1000 years by being completely stupid, so they are able to compromise and work together if they think the pros outweigh the cons. In the end each one wants the empire to succeed, they just fight because they think their method is the best and the only one that will work.
I would make the "factions" an institutional split, like how there's friction between modern military branches like the Army and the Navy.

So for example there's the "Marines" that are really strong monsters (eg, the second half of the season) who think they should invade with open warfare, and the "Spies" who are shapeshifters who want to do the Secret Infiltration thing.

Then the "Marines" faction could be the traditionalists who insisted that the Protag got promoted, while the more flexible "Spies" wanted to break tradition and leave him at a lower rank.

As an added layer, he's replacing the "Spy General" that got whacked by the Magical Girls in the climax of Season One, who deceived them into thinking that he was the only General so they would let their guard down if he was defeated. So the people in the same "spy" branch as him that he's working with resent him being there, while he's paradoxically got more support from the force that he's on the rival side of.
Well, the institutional split is a bit more complicated than just saying there are two branches of the "Dark Army". Each General technically has their own autonomous army that got sealed with them, but the thing is that when they suddenly found themselves stuck in the seal with no armies to fight, their armies were used to provide basic services to the survivors. For example one of Armies took charge of building roads and housing, another of education and health, another of public order and so on. The point is that the Generals were forced to wear both the hat of an army leader and the hat of a public servant for a long time and soon a heavy demilitarization period followed to conserve resourced. While all four generals conserved some number of soldiers, the big problem is that the guys of the "War" faction conserved more military power than the ones of the "Spy" groups (or have better means to arm up fast if needed). Normally that wouldn't matter that much since them being sealed makes a coup be tantamount to suicide, but with the seal breaking the "Spy" faction fears that their opponents might think they can get away with a forced takeover.

To the "Spy" group, sending the Fifth General on his mission allows them to control the number of soldiers he manages (and thus avoid having the protagonist join the "War" faction and gang up on them), but also allow the "Spies" to buy time for them to build up and counterbalance their political foes. Well that should be the core issue that would drive a lot of the political background of the story behind the scenes, and would basically exist to make the protagonist's life hard at first before he grows enough to be able to directly engage with that situation. A part of me feels this might be too complicated for something that ultimately will be mostly in the background at first, but I think getting why the Generals do things is important.

About your idea of making the S1 boss the dead General, I think it really cleans up the plot, and adds a good layer of complexity to the issue, but a part of me hesitates to do it because I kind of wanted to run with the idea that the first real contact the Sealed Kingdom has with the real world is through the Fifth's General campaign. Plus I wanted to have the option to play with the concept of what do the surviving mooks of the last season do when they are no longer relevant, and other small things.
 

Contrabardus

Well-Known Member
#21
Currently 227,000 words into a 1st draft of a 'stuck in a fantasy game world' story.

It's not a SAO type world, but an actual world where people who were playing an MMO just woke up in one day as their player characters that mirrors the one in the game, but is also different in some ways. No explanation is given for why or how, and I'm not sure that it will ever actually be explained because that's not really the focus of the story. It's a comedy thing and not really concerned with being dour or edgy at all. There is some darkness and a little drama about it involved, but it's a lot more Konosuba than SAO. Probably something of a medium between Konosuba and Log Horizon is what I'm going for.

It's not trying to pretend that things won't work out for our heroes in the end at all, nor is it concerned with melodrama or how miserable the characters can be because living in a fantasy world sucks. That's not really the kind of story it is, though there is some conflict involved.

The 'NPC' characters remember the players exploits from before they were pulled into the world as if the plot of the game was history that spanned a few hundred years. The original timescale was something like one hour equals one day, and the game existed for a little over ten years prior to the event that dropped people into the world. Players were leveled down to about lvl 15 when it happened. The story picks up about three years later, and the average player level is about 25 with the cap being 100. In universe estimates based on time scale put anyone reaching that level at about 200 years as leveling slows as they advance. Players have much longer lifespans than NPCs, but aren't eternal either and they will eventually age and die.

There's also a limit to the resurrection magic. Each time they die the bond weakens a bit. Think cutting a very fat rope with a pocketknife as an analogy for it, with each death being a single slash. How someone dies matters as the more damage they have to recover from, the more damage is done to the 'bond' that ties them to the world. Eventually it will break if they die too often.

Just reached the part where the story has a natural break about where a first book in a series would end.

MC of the first part is a woman who was a 'player' as how things work is kind of laid out through her interactions with the main cast along with a few other of these 'adventurers'. However, the main of the overall story is actually one of the NPC characters who gains the same kinds of powers that the 'player' characters have along with a few other teenagers from his village, which includes resurrection in a psuedo form of immortality. The main part of the story is him and his friends interacting with these odd immortals that exist in his world and their strange culture.

Normally NPCs are unable to have certain things explained to them. As of some sort of magic prevents them from comprehending or questioning certain things. Our hero and his friends become immune to this effect after they become like the player characters.

The next part will be a Battle School type storyline where the hero and his friends go to a Royal College type academy after being enrolled into it by the woman who is the MC in the first part. Basically fantasy High School.

Needs a lot of editing, and I'm not entirely satisfied with the current state of it. The humor element isn't quite as prominent as I'd like yet.

Here's a segment from it to give an Idea what I'm talking about. It's from a segment around the middle of the first half of what I've already written where our hero has a conversation with a surprisingly friendly dragon:

“I can tell by the look on your face you suspect why I'm telling you this.” The beast chuckled and hissed a little. A bit of flame escaped its nostrils and made the teen jump a little.

The teen got a look like a deer that was looking at a hunter with their bow drawn.

“You claim you're a knight with no fealty. I can grant you that.” The dragon rolled its head a little in the dirt. “Swear fealty to me, and I can grant you the status of a true knight. No need for royal blood or noble birth.”

“I um...” the boy gripped at his shirt over his chest. “What does that mean? I mean, what do I have to do?”

The dragon shifted again to look at him with both eyes. “Well, I did have something of a quest in mind, but it will be many years before you'll be able to complete it. You're not strong enough and there is quite a bit of wandering involved. I'd rather you didn't rush off and try to complete it right away. For now, I'd just expect you to be an honorable knight in your travels, and work on growing stronger.”

“Well, I guess that doesn't sound so bad. Forgive me for saying so, but I'm not sure how much I can trust you.” The boy looked flustered and cringed a little after he said it.

“Hmmm. That's good actually. I'd have been a bit worried if you simply jumped at the chance. It's impressive you'd be brave enough to say so to my face at that,” replied the great beast. “I'm a golden dragon. That makes my alignment naturally positive. I breathe fire like all dragons, but my magical alignment isn't elemental. It is Light.”

“Light?” asked the boy in confusion.

“Yes. Humans call it Holy magic. It governs healing spells and purification magic. That sort of thing. Most dragons are neutral, but the darker and more dangerous of my kind are something close to demons. You could say I'm the opposite of that.” The beast lifted its head up as if it was considering that.

“So, you're like a God?” asked the boy.

“No. I'm not a God,” said the dragon as it hissed in amusement. “My alignment is close to that sort of being though.”

Yahiko nodded and considered that. “Wouldn't a Paladin, Cleric, or something be better then?”

The dragon rolled its eyes. “Ugh. No. They're awful sticks in the mud. A bit overzealous actually. The adventurer sort tends to be a bit better about it due to their otherworldly nature, but Clerics and Paladins of the men of this world tend to overdo it. They think having any sort of fun is sinful and take everything so seriously. It's awful. I mean, they're usually trustworthy to a fault, but can be a bit dangerous because they tend to be so extreme. They take vows of celibacy and never drink anything but water and weak wine, and overdo everything.” The creature waved its claw in a dismissive manner. “Bah.”

“I'm not an adventurer though. I mean, I joined a guild and all, but I'm not from that other world. I was born in Virinia's Gate. That's how I met Iria-san,” said the boy as he hung his head a little.

“I've heard,” said the beast as it set its head down in the dirt again. “The reason I offer it to you is because you're of this world, but also an adventurer. They aren't of this world, and this is something I believe can only be done by someone who is.”

That caught the boy off guard. “I see. What about this quest?”

The dragon lifted its head up a little again. “Huh? Oh, that? Don't worry about it. Like I said, it'll be several years before you can even start on that. You need to see some of the world and figure out your place in it first, get stronger, learn some skills, gain some allies, that sort of thing. I'll tell you if you agree, but not before you've sworn yourself to me as a knight. Part of the ritual is for me to give you a quest to complete.”

The boy leaned back on his palms. “I suppose I do owe you. Still not sure about this though. I mean, what does it mean if I'm your knight? You can give me orders and stuff? I have to obey?”

The dragon nodded. “To a point. I'm kind of anti-evil though so I'd never ask you to do anything wrong. If I do, I expect you to refuse. You'll act in my name and using my crest, so I expect you to behave. Really you'll just act on your own and I'll be fine with it. I'm not asking you to start the order again or anything. I didn't ask Cornelius to start it to begin with, he just did it on his own. I just knighted him, made him promise to promote peace and justice, behave with honor, and sent him on his way. I'll give you a quest to complete as part of the ritual, but that's probably the only command you'll ever get from me, and there's no rush to complete it. Just as long as you get to it eventually.” It shook its head to get some of the dirt off of the underside of its chin. “You start dragging my name through the mud and become evil and I'll get annoyed and might do something about it. Otherwise you'll pretty much be left to your own devices.”

“What do I get out of this?” asked the boy. He felt a little bad about it considering Sharssa had saved his life.

“That's cute how you feel guilty, but it was a smart question,” said the Dragon as it stretched out one of its wings, it shook a bit as the muscles twitched, but couldn't fully extend within the cavern despite nearly touching the cave roof. “For starters, you'll be a real knight under my authority. I do have that authority by the way. All dragons are in my dominion, a few are somewhat rebellious, but I'm the rightful ruler of them all. You'll be Sir Yahiko Kuroito. I can give you some things to help you find your way out of this cave if you do. That sword of yours won't do given the path you must travel. I will anyway, but it won't be as nice.”

The boy was very wide eyed at that. He didn't disbelieve it for a moment. He was also slightly annoyed that the dragon knew his full name despite that he hadn't told him. He found himself wondering just how far into his mind the dragon had gone.

“Well lad, how about it then? I don't live in this cave you know and I can't stay here forever. You wouldn't survive me carrying you out of here and I can't let you ride me. I also can't accompany you as the path you need to take is a bit narrow for me. So, either way it's about time we parted ways. You are free to go if you wish, I have no intention of forcing you to do anything.” The dragon turned its head to the side to look at him with one eyes and drew very near. Yahiko could feel the heat coming off the scales and was almost overwhelmed just being within about eight feet of it.

“Fine. I'll do it,” said the boy as he stood up, balled up his fist, and hung his head.

“You surprise me. Still suspicious of my motives, yet still brave enough to stand before me and agree to what I'm asking,” said the beast. “You're almost too perfect.”

“I'm not sure how to respond to that,” said the boy as he looked up at the beast. Waves of heat were radiating off of it and it was uncomfortable to be so near. He now understood why the beast had warned him against touching it or drawing too near.

“Just kneel on one knee and repeat after me,” said the dragon.

The boy fell down to one knee and lowered his head. He spoke the words that echoed in his head. “I, Yahiko Kuroito, swear to follow the path of justice and light wherever it may lead me, to conduct myself with honor, to promote kindness and peace, to fight for what is right and just, to devote myself to honesty so long as it does no harm and always remain true to my word, to oppose evil wherever I find it, to be reasonable and patient with those who are lacking in judgment, merciful when it is prudent, and... I shall not become a huge stick in the mud with no sense of humor, who never has any fun, and to live my life to the fullest for as long as I shall live?” He was a bit confused about that last part and was not expecting it.

He felt something touch his shoulders one after the other. “Very good, now rise, Sir Yahiko.” The dragon had a sword in its claws and flipped it around and caught the blade. “Take this. It's dangerous to go alone.”
 

zerohour

Well-Known Member
#22
Got to kick this particular section back into gear now that TFF as been zombified again.

Wrote 52,000 words for NaNoWriMo this year. Plus about 4k words on a second novel because apparently I'm not tormenting myself enough. Also wrote a couple of short stories for sufficient velocity's monthly writing competition. Have a few novelettes/novellas written as well, just need to give them a few passes for editing. Eventually...
 
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