Ask!

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rrc2soft
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Re: Ask!

Post by rrc2soft » Sun Jan 15, 2012 12:11 pm

Aura wrote:
rrc2soft wrote:Now, a (very egoistic) question for all the writers. What resources have you used to learn how to write / create stories? Your tools of the trade :wink:
I read a lot. That's about it. I've not studied writing or storytelling at all, but instead derived pretty much all of my understanding of writing and storytelling from thinking about and analyzing the writings of myself and others.
At least on that matter I am on the right track :D , although I usually focus my analyses on movies (they are shorter than books). Need to change the PoV. Thx!

TheHivemind
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Re: Ask!

Post by TheHivemind » Sun Jan 15, 2012 1:05 pm

rrc2soft wrote: So, what resources (books, websites, etc) did you use to help you learn the deep intricacies of writing and storytelling?
The thing about writing is that most of the books that claim to teach how to write are just telling you common sense crap which isn't worth the money you pay for reading it.

So here's free advice: read a lot of books. Not just stuff you're comfortable with--don't just read pulp fictions and things that are already relevant to your interests--read experimental stuff and old stuff and new stuff. Read non-fiction (histories, or journalism. The New Yorker, for example, has good people writing about shit you will not give a fuck about, but it is worth reading them just to see how other people use language to describe things). Read a lot of short stories, if at all possible.

Read shitty, awful fanfiction. You'll learn to avoid a lot of stuff plotting-wise and style-wise, and maybe you'll even come across one or two good things buried in there too which will wind up showing you a different way to structure something or a particularly good turn of phrase that helps develop your own vocabulary.

If you're ultra-serious about storytelling, then I suggest paying attention in English class, because you'll learn a lot about storytelling and structure in there too, provided you actually make the effort to engage with the material. I don't know where you are in terms of your education, but if you go to college take a couple English courses as electives and see what you can learn. Me, I have spent way too much money in studying literature, so I've got all kinds of OPINIONS about the value of that sort of thing, but it will help.

I noticed you mentioned movies as well--good start, but you should also look into comics and narrative games and EVERYTHING. The world is composed, largely, of stories. Experience as many as you can, and while you're doing that experiment in your writing--set out to write something in a particular author's voice, and see how you did. When you've done that with a few authors, write something that feels more natural--in other words, stop trying to sound like someone in particular and just start writing something off the top of your head, and you'll have a voice of your own. Eventually.

Some books I'd suggest off the top of my head to start with:
Canterbury Tales
Something by Jane Austin--Probably Pride and Prejudice is the best one but I dunno, I'm not huge into Austin.
Dracula (if you actually read the book, you'll discover a bunch of interesting shit Stoker does narratively)
The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay
Portrait of Dorian Grey (although Oscar Wilde's plays are way better, so maybe read those instead?)
Cat's Cradle
Infinite Jest, if you have the sort of insane free time this book requires to just get through it.
Ulysses (see above caveat, and understand that it's not because it is written coherently, but because the way the words play off of one another is important)
Mrs Dalloway, or anything else by Virginia Woolf
Bone
The Long Halloween
If you can find any Stray Bullets, it's worth checking out
Invisible Man (Not THE Invisible Man, that's HG Wells. I'm talking about the Ralph Ellison book)
Shakespeare's plays. Doesn't matter which ones, but Richard III is almost criminally overlooked
American Gods is pretty good
Gravity's Rainbow (ha ha ha yes do it do it)
Fear and Loathing: On the Campaign Trail '72
Going After Cacciato
Life of Pi
Catch 22
Harry Potter
A Series of Unfortunate Events
OTHER STUFF I DON'T KNOW MAN, READ BOOKS.

That's most of the stuff I can remember reading whilst in High School and college which in one way or another has probably informed some of the ways I structure and tell stories. There's a list of video games that is equally long and boring to look at, I'm sure, but I can't think of all of them now. Now get reading.

Jameson

Re: Ask!

Post by Jameson » Sun Jan 15, 2012 1:19 pm

A quick and simple question, what program was used to compose the music used within Katawa Shoujo?

Aerius
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Re: Ask!

Post by Aerius » Sun Jan 15, 2012 2:10 pm

TheHivemind wrote: Some books I'd suggest off the top of my head to start with:
Canterbury Tales
Something by Jane Austin--Probably Pride and Prejudice is the best one but I dunno, I'm not huge into Austin.
Dracula (if you actually read the book, you'll discover a bunch of interesting shit Stoker does narratively)
The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay
Portrait of Dorian Grey (although Oscar Wilde's plays are way better, so maybe read those instead?)
Cat's Cradle
Infinite Jest, if you have the sort of insane free time this book requires to just get through it.
Ulysses (see above caveat, and understand that it's not because it is written coherently, but because the way the words play off of one another is important)
Mrs Dalloway, or anything else by Virginia Woolf
Bone
The Long Halloween
If you can find any Stray Bullets, it's worth checking out
Invisible Man (Not THE Invisible Man, that's HG Wells. I'm talking about the Ralph Ellison book)
Shakespeare's plays. Doesn't matter which ones, but Richard III is almost criminally overlooked
American Gods is pretty good
Gravity's Rainbow (ha ha ha yes do it do it)
Fear and Loathing: On the Campaign Trail '72
Going After Cacciato
Life of Pi
Catch 22
Harry Potter
A Series of Unfortunate Events
OTHER STUFF I DON'T KNOW MAN, READ BOOKS.
If I'm allowed to add something to that / recommend something: The first law trilogy by Abercrombie (pretty popular at the moment it seems) is a good example to see what language actually does for setting mood and character. Abercrombie writes in the perspectives of different characters and uses very distinct styles as well in storytelling itself, as in speec of the characters. And it is extremely obvious how the different use of words change how you read, percieve the character and the scene enormous.

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Member22
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Re: Ask!

Post by Member22 » Sun Jan 15, 2012 3:47 pm

How large was the core dev team (with writers, proof readers, musicians, artists and programmers)? How many contributors/part-time/small role members of the dev team was there?

So in total, how many people were involved in this project?
"If Hisao took one thing away from his time at Yamaku it was the fact that people who have handicaps don't actually have handicaps. People like Lilly and Shizune are more able-bodied and well-adjusted than most of the kids at Hisao's old high school. He shook his head slightly. No, students at Yamaku weren't handicapped; everyone else was." - WetCrate

rrc2soft
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Re: Ask!

Post by rrc2soft » Sun Jan 15, 2012 4:26 pm

TheHivemind wrote:
rrc2soft wrote: So, what resources (books, websites, etc) did you use to help you learn the deep intricacies of writing and storytelling?
The thing about writing is that most of the books that claim to teach how to write are just telling you common sense crap which isn't worth the money you pay for reading it.
(...)
Aerius wrote: If I'm allowed to add something to that / recommend something: The first law trilogy by Abercrombie (...)
Thanks to both of you :) . In order to not hijack the thread I'll answer you in private, although I have to explain here why I was asking for "resources", and why I think (from my ignorance) that having some right "theoretical" resources are important (although it seems based on your answers that the resources I am seeking are not available :( )

On December 2010 I had the honor to attend (by chance) a writer's meeting in Tokyo Hackerspace, where different writers from different backgrounds discussed about writing and made some exercises on creative writing. What I saw was awesome: beyond pure, raw talent (one guy wrote a hilarious tale in 15min about a guy with an Alien living inside his digestive system), I could perceive they used various techniques to (for example) help you feel with the five senses (kind of like in "Perfume: The Story of a Murderer") with just words. And in fact, they actually told me that I was right and described me such techniques. As my writing is extremely plain, I was hoping to get something similar to become an inspiration for my own works.

Anyway, thx again for answering :D , I'll start reading with a different mindset :wink:

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Quitch
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Re: Ask!

Post by Quitch » Sun Jan 15, 2012 4:39 pm

I have a question about the meaning of the final scene in Rin's FMV. What does it mean? Each FMV gives you a little insight into the character, or shows events that will happen. In Rin's we see the yellow daffodil which is where their dating begins, we see the world through Rin's eyes as she paints, we see her stare out the picture which is presumably a metaphor for her trying to show her soul via her painting. Then in the final scene we see the white daffodil, which is from the happy ending, but on a bed in a dreamlike landscape and Haiso is missing at the end.

What does that scene mean? Is it supposed to represent her detachment from reality, a bridge that Haiso will never completely cross?

McBaggin
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Re: Ask!

Post by McBaggin » Sun Jan 15, 2012 5:15 pm

If you had to stay on an island with another dev who would it be and why?

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Talifan9
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Re: Ask!

Post by Talifan9 » Sun Jan 15, 2012 6:04 pm

Nicol Armarfi wrote:
Talifan9 wrote:Is there any estimation for that OST release by the way? (Know it is a fairly new idea, just wondering)
Not at this time, sorry :(!
Okay, no worries :)
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C27
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Re: Ask!

Post by C27 » Sun Jan 15, 2012 6:36 pm

TheHivemind wrote: -snip-
OTHER STUFF I DON'T KNOW MAN, READ BOOKS.
I'd throw in everything by Vonnegut and China Mieville, and some stuff by Haruki Murakami, H. P.Lovecraft and Philip K. Dick. Also, House of Leaves.
Rin Tezuka, Painter, withdraws from society...
Rin Tezuka, Painter has begun a mysterious construction!

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quellsnarg
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Re: Ask!

Post by quellsnarg » Sun Jan 15, 2012 8:35 pm

Hey Suriko (and possibly cpl_crud):

This has been on my mind for about a week and I've been trying to get the balls to post this, but I figure if I never ask, I'll never even get a chance of knowing.

I've been looking at reviews on other websites as well as this one, and I see that I'm not the only one who feels like the sex scene with Hanako was really uncomfortable to watch because the consent appears pretty dubious, even after the fact (although this isn't exactly a widespread opinion and the opinion seems to be held mostly by women, from what I've gathered). All the other girls had sex scenes where it was pretty obvious that they did want sex/physical comfort, even in the awkward Misha and Rin masturbation scenes (and I did notice that Hisao stopped when Misha showed pain). In Hanako's, I didn't really feel that way. He didn't stop when she was obviously in pain and she looked pretty uncomfortable for most of the scene. Why did you decide to write a scene that can potentially be read as date rape or coercion? I don't mean that in an inflammatory way necessarily, and I can see how it can be interpreted as at least semi-consensual, I'm just genuinely confused... about a lot of things in that scene and the intentions behind it, honestly, and I'd like some clarification if you feel like giving it.
Shizune >>> Emi > Rin = Hanako >> Lilly

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Brogurt
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Re: Ask!

Post by Brogurt » Sun Jan 15, 2012 8:45 pm

Probably the same reason crud wrote the OD "rape" scene that got scrapped, whatever that reason may be. The devs must have been hellbent on getting something like that into the game.

ingordo

Re: Ask!

Post by ingordo » Sun Jan 15, 2012 9:28 pm

Surely you don't mean "whispered touch"? She leads HIsao to her room and strips in front of him, how can that be considered anything but consensual? On the other hand I felt uncomfortable with each and every sex scene involving Rin, because she has such a tenuous grasp on reality that she can't really consent to the act of sex. But it's probably a matter of how you see the characters more than anything, so I wouldn't blame the writers for either case.

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Brogurt
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Re: Ask!

Post by Brogurt » Sun Jan 15, 2012 10:28 pm

ingordo wrote:Surely you don't mean "whispered touch"? She leads HIsao to her room and strips in front of him, how can that be considered anything but consensual?
Did you forget the part where she did it because she wanted to show Hisao her scars and tell him of her past, since he did the same for her?
Yes it was consensual, that was cleared up in the park, but that doesn't excuse Hisao from acting like a retard

ingordo

Re: Ask!

Post by ingordo » Sun Jan 15, 2012 10:39 pm

Brogurt wrote:
ingordo wrote:Surely you don't mean "whispered touch"? She leads HIsao to her room and strips in front of him, how can that be considered anything but consensual?
Did you forget the part where she did it because she wanted to show Hisao her scars and tell him of her past, since he did the same for her?
And she had to take off her bra to do that? :? :D As Hisao himself would say in a different path entirely: "gimme a break, you're undressing in front of me!" I just don't see how or when he acted like a retard in that scene.

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