April 29, 2021 at 10:21 pm #133520
I am now officially spamming this thread… but here’s my concept.
(heads up to any of my IP friends reading this… there might be spoilers, so beware 😛 )
Concept: epic fantasy stand-alone with a magic system where certain characters can control water or wind. It’s set on the ocean near a giant, end-of-the-world like waterfall that inverts and creates a tsunami of deadly red water every now and then. That tsunami is supposedly created by the Red Watchers, people who can control the wind and rule the city-state of Anóthen. These Red Watchers have a century-long feud with the city-state of Lithos right next to them, especially the one family line who can control the sea.
That’s the worldbuilding details. These are the concepts within the concepts (not sure how to word that) for the two main characters in the story:
Rydia long ago abandoned hope that the mythical White Ships would save her family from the Red Watchers, who wish to kill them because of Rydia’s powerful ability to control the sea. But when she seeks to save her family herself and initiates a war to destroy the Red Watchers, the results leave her questioning whether she can rebuild the shattered world she created and ever find peace for herself.
Zane has had far too many dealings with the Red Watchers, but the father they killed also left Zane with a blueprint for saving their people. When a war begins and upends Zane’s plans, he realizes that following his father’s path might cost him everything, including the woman he loves and the people he was supposed to save.
Please shred it with critique! 😉
"Beauty will save the world." - DostoevskyMay 1, 2021 at 8:45 pm #133557
Thanks, and thank you so much for the critique! <3 Also I love your premise (I’ll probably come back and try to articulate some questions about the story cos it sounds so intriguing!)
My one thought (and maybe you’ve already done this), is to have a deeper reason for them ending up abusing their powers. Like, some sort of twist to eventually surprise readers and change the direction of the plot and/or affect the main character.
Ooh I probably would go with that but I’ve already tied their history into the theme as representing the Church. I might go back and write a different story delving deeper into their reasons but mostly the political atmosphere and the varying accounts are just a web there. Although there were ability-borns who abused their powers there’s, at this point in their history, no way to know whether it was just a couple bad apples or the majority and there were enough people who hated them as a whole and enough rumors everywhere that the damage was done on both sides. The thematic idea surrounding the ability-borns is that instead of getting lost pointing fingers for the damage caused in the past both sides need to see the damage they’re causing that’s right in front of their faces. And, since they represent God’s chosen people it a thematic matter of can the people regain their faith in the Church before it’s too late? And how will things shift after this abuse?
But this one might be just in the very background for most of my story since there’s a lotta “plot bunnies” I’m trying not to chase XD.
is there something selfless about him? Or… like, I guess from the description I’m looking for a reason to care about him beyond that he’s been through a lot of trauma.
I love this question! One of the most important facets of his character is that he’s a really compassionate (and sarcastic) person and that’s constantly in conflict with how desperate he is.
Uh, lemmie see…medically speaking when someone is abused–especially during childhood–there are two basic patterns most victims follow growing up; to be a repeat victim or become an abuser. The reason for this is that while the brain is developing of course it imprints behavior patterns to establish a “normal” so you either learn how to imitate the key figures in your life or to fit into your “role” in a family or team or unit. So, for example, victims very often imitate their abusers mannerisms in specific instances and there’s a survival mindset for everything.
Alessio leans heavily on the repeat-victim spectrum and he knows it but he doesn’t know how to break out of it. There’s no understanding of boundaries for people who’ve been abused, there’s no sense of what’s appropriate/safe/proper to say or do. So he’s always in conflict because he has a very strong moral compass but he believes he’s a villain because he can see how much he’s been influenced by his abusers.
In this story he’s trying to distance himself from another bad situation and establish an identity outside of his trauma. But he always puts other people first, he’s learned not to hear his own needs or wants, and so he can’t articulate anything emotionally and he can’t ask for help, part of his trauma response is being unable to ask for help because he can’t allow himself to be vulnerable.
But the main villain is a good foil to Alessio’s character because he’s been through a lot of trauma too but he responds by using his trauma as a way to gain sympathy and has become an abuser himself, but Alessio can identify so well with the villain (who he grew up with) he’s always struggling wanting to redeem the villain and a sense of dependency toward the villain who’s one of the few people who understands Alessio emotionally.
Don't let the voices in your head drive you insane;only some of them can drive; most are underageMay 2, 2021 at 8:16 pm #133573
Ok! I love the premise, it sounds real cool! A couple questions I have are; are the Red Watchers actually bad guys? Are all of them bad guys or just some? I like the themes this seems to be drawing on, Rydia and Zane’s decisions to fight and the consequences it’ll have. Will they learn their cause was not as pure as they believed? The worldbuilding sounds fascinating, tell me more about the White Ships and the Red Watcher, pretty please.
Don't let the voices in your head drive you insane;only some of them can drive; most are underageMay 3, 2021 at 7:55 am #133580
I have several works with varying concepts, but I guess I’ll go over some of the more interesting ones.
Here’s a synopsis of my main Haven story (as yet unnamed but with the working title Endless):
The dark wraith Ingor once terrorized the nation of Haven from his lair in the Nightwold, the Dark Tower of the Witchvale. He and his army of maeres would capture those with synes (elemental magic) and transform them into more maeres while slaughtering any resistance. Some forty years ago the folk hero Tai Lurason, having lost almost everyone he cared for to Ingor and his maeres, used his storm syne to raise a hurricane and wash out the peninsula tying the Nightwold to the rest of Haven. Tai is believed to have then died from the combined strain and injuries from an earlier fight with the maeres. The Nightwold was then cut off save for a chain of small islands, peaks of a drowned mountain range, that form a crossable ridge at low tide known as the Ghostpass for its treacherousness. Ingor’s army no longer brazenly attacks the mainland but a handful of maeres will occasionally cross the Pass and steal away a syne-bearer to grow their numbers until they can invade once more en masse.
The story follows the (mis-)adventures of Ada Warin, the mute foster-daughter of the Northern Marshal, following the fourteenth anniversary of when she, as a toddler, was left with the Lady Warin by an unknown man. Ada has always had something fae about her. And now, it seems, she has inherited a syne of storms, but from whom?
@this-is-not-an-alien I honestly find it hilarious that Alessio and Meira are in the same story and likely to spend time with each other.
"Remember, you go nowhere by accident. Wherever you go, God is sending you." - Rev. Peter R. HaleMay 3, 2021 at 11:35 am #133582MelancholicWriter@melancholicwriter
Ya, like I said I’m really bad at explaining things…and I always just think don’t give spoilers but she is there because is this tradition that the heirs there find a wife from earth, but they talk it over with the woman after getting to know her…the “prince” in this case doesn’t but just sees her (in the prologue that’s in the stories and fantasies) and takes her there. The quest is because the king (even though he is powerful and good) cannot just send people back without them doing something. The greater test is trusting the true prince that the other is false and accepting that he must be stopped even though she has began to have feelings for him.
"Courage is found in unlikely places." JRR TolkienMay 3, 2021 at 5:23 pm #133600
Ah, I get it now! That was definitely be a very cool and relevant theme. And yeah… plot bunnies… I know a lot about those. The last draft of my novel (the one I shared the concept for) ended up being 200k because of those annoying little guys.
YESSS. SARCASTIC CHARACTERS RULE. Ahem. I really love them.
That sounds like a solid conflict! It’s like he’s afraid of what kind of person he can be at times and doesn’t want to hurt anyone? I like that and think it would definitely make him likeable (I mean, he’s already sarcastic, so that makes him instantly likeable to me). That’s a fantastic idea with the villain. I imagine that creates extra pain for Alessio… and character pain is awesome 😉
"Beauty will save the world." - DostoevskyMay 3, 2021 at 5:28 pm #133602
Thanks so much for commenting on my concept! No, the Red Watchers are not all bad guys. Part of the reason for their war is that they’ve been running out of food for years and are on the brink of starvation. Because of how I did the worldbuilding, there’s no place for them to escape to without it looking like they’re starting a full-on war with the Lithi, which they’re not strong enough to win (their Stormlords, four people who control the wind, are too exhausted fighting the Red Tide and bringing in rain, since there’s no natural source of fresh water in this world). The century-long feud is actually of very little consequence now that they’re dying. They could potentially escape if Rydia (the sea-cursed) were to let them go or surrender to them… and they could make her do that by killing or threatening her family. So there’s a lot of miscommunication between the two city-states. Which may be purposefully created by a certain someone 😉
That’s exactly how it turns out, at least for Rydia. She starts a war. Realizes she’s harming helpless people in the process and she’s super guilt-ridden (she was guilt-ridden in the first place, since her family is in danger because of her and she’s the only one who has the power to save her people but wasn’t doing it to begin with). Her arc mainly focuses on how it’s impossible for anyone to fix everything in the world, no matter how hard they try or what abilities they have.
And Zane… *rubs hands* He’s actually a Red Watcher in disguise who’s mission was to convince Rydia to surrender and let the Red Watchers sail away free. However, he got distracted falling in love with her and fearing her hating him if he told her the truth XD His arc is the flip of Rydia’s, where he has to start taking responsibility and doing the duty before him to help mend things.
The White Ships were prophesied to come and mend all this conflict, so a lot of the history of the world that’s built up in the story is figuring out why the ships aren’t there. Which probably has to do with a certain someone’s plan…
"Beauty will save the world." - DostoevskyMay 4, 2021 at 3:28 pm #133629
Ada Warin, the mute foster-daughter of the Northern Marshal, following the fourteenth anniversary of when she, as a toddler, was left with the Lady Warin by an unknown man. Ada has always had something fae about her. And now, it seems, she has inherited a syne of storms, but from whom?
Ooh, I didn’t know about all the mystery surrounding Ada, I honestly find that more fascinating than all the action you’ve got in the first chapters. Maybe try integrating that into the descriptions? The story sounds really interesting I can’t wait to see how it turns out!
I honestly find it hilarious that Alessio and Meira are in the same story and likely to spend time with each other.
Lol it gets worse; Meira has a huge crush on him and he has no clue what to do with that XD.
And yeah… plot bunnies… I know a lot about those. The last draft of my novel (the one I shared the concept for) ended up being 200k because of those annoying little guys.
Ikr! They’re so cute and fluffy and then they devour your story and your sanity!
Ahem, yeeessss, sarcastic characters are the best!
Haha character pain, I have no clue why all my favorite WIP characters want me dead XD
That’s exactly how it turns out, at least for Rydia. She starts a war. Realizes she’s harming helpless people in the process and she’s super guilt-ridden (she was guilt-ridden in the first place, since her family is in danger because of her and she’s the only one who has the power to save her people but wasn’t doing it to begin with). Her arc mainly focuses on how it’s impossible for anyone to fix everything in the world, no matter how hard they try or what abilities they have. And Zane… *rubs hands* He’s actually a Red Watcher in disguise who’s mission was to convince Rydia to surrender and let the Red Watchers sail away free. However, he got distracted falling in love with her and fearing her hating him if he told her the truth XD His arc is the flip of Rydia’s, where he has to start taking responsibility and doing the duty before him to help mend things.
Oooh, that sounds cool! That history really sets up for some good themes and I love how Rydia’s and Zane’s arc contrast, that’ll make a great facet for thematic conflict!
Don't let the voices in your head drive you insane;only some of them can drive; most are underageMay 4, 2021 at 4:58 pm #133633May 6, 2021 at 12:54 pm #133758
@melancholicwriter gotcha! That definitely makes sense now 😀
"Beauty will save the world." - DostoevskyMay 6, 2021 at 2:55 pm #133759
Lol…what’s a tribble? XD
Don't let the voices in your head drive you insane;only some of them can drive; most are underageMay 6, 2021 at 6:10 pm #133766
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