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Collaborative Storytelling • A Writer's Sanctuary • Multi-Genre RPG
 
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 2. Starting Your Story - IMPORTANT INFORMATION

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PostSubject: 2. Starting Your Story - IMPORTANT INFORMATION   Tue May 26, 2009 3:36 pm

So you would like to start up your own adventure and share it with Bifrost Bridge!
I am glad that you have stopped here first, because following these
directions will ensure that your story is received well.

You first have to determine the kind of role-playing adventure you
are going to start and they fall into two specific categories:
Play & Post or Collaborative Writing.


PLAY AND POST


This is a pre-set adventure scenario that is guided by a Game Keeper that usually utilizes random dice rolls and statistics to determine the outcome of their actions. Players have little control over the world around them and are limited to manipulating their own characters. Play & Post is intensive for the Game Keeper and by contrast is very relaxed for the participants. Posts are usually not very long and the Keeper must be able to check on the story line frequently in order to maintain interest, responding once a month to your participants often causes them to lose interest.

Play and Post adventures can range from simple posts in response to the scenario set by the game master to incorporating a system and character sheets that turn the adventure into a classic Table-Top style game. Those that excel at these style of adventures often have experience with games like Dungeons & Dragons or similar table-top role playing games.


COLLABORATIVE WRITING/STORY-TELLING


This style of adventure allows all participants to manipulate the world around them in varying degrees in order to tell the story of their own character and elaborate on the posts of their fellow writers. It is the most popular form of role-playing that Bifrost Bridge offers and it can be broken down into three different types: Free Form, Directed and Controlled. You are advised to make the participants aware of which style you prefer to run and be sure your responsibilities are met. Those that wish to participate in your story will write in accordance with the style you have set so please be sure that you adhere to your choice.

Free Form

In this type of role-playing scenario the stage is set but the direction is a complete collaborative effort. The creator of the setting and all participants are equals working together to build the world and write the story by communicating their ideas in OOC discussions and developing topics to help define the universe. The writer that created the concept is naturally a driving force in the direction of the story but they have relinquished their control over the parameters of the world.

This type requires some nursing in the beginning but then, with avid group of participants will take care of itself. It is the easiest and most self sufficient method of collaborative writing.

Directed

This is basically a free-form scenario where the creator assumes the role of director. As a director, you guide the other players through your world allowing them to develop their characters and assuring that their sub-plots do not stray too far from the path. It is your responsibility to guide the other writers in a benevolent manner, you are not a dictator but a pilot making sure that the ship stays its course. Other writers who enjoy collaborative writing will not want to participate in an scenario that stifles their creativity and so you must be attentive to your creation.

This type of scenario is not recommended to people who do not have the time to ensure that the participants do not stray too far from their set plot. It is not polite to arrive much later in the story and suddenly make your fellow writers twist their characters around a full 180 degrees. You have to at all times consider the needs of the participants and provide them with enough information to properly stay within your parameters.

The more collaboration that is allowed in this style of writing the more successful the story will be and naturally varying degrees of Directed stories may be developed, some that may be more or less rigid.

Controlled

In this environment you exact the control of a god. The Controller's story line supersedes all others and thus participants of this scenario will rarely stray from the path that has been set before them except to develop their characters or elaborate on current scenes. In a sense there is not much that separates this type of collaborative writing from Play & Post other than for the fact that the participants still have an opportunity to stray a short distance from where the main story line directly effects their character(s). This type of role-playing requires a keeper or master that has a lot of time to keep the participants apprised of what is occurring in the world and because it requires so much attention this style usually does not have a high success rate.

STORY CONTROL


"I want to have complete control but I don't have the time. Is it alright if I set the story line and let people go free form then when I return resume my control?"

In a word, 'No'. Once an adventure goes Free Form, the participants are not going to react well to having their story lines superseded by another, even if you were the one that started it all off. In your absence the participants could very well redesign the entire world. It is far better for you to run a Play and Post style adventure if you would like to always retain your control, or discuss your intentions with the would-be participants of your story and see what they think.

For the answers to any other questions you need only ask the existing participants of the story. Remember that once a style is set in motion the writers that are sharing in the story expect it to stay constant and any deviation from what has been established should be discussed. Also, should you have an idea for a completely different scenario, present it along with your story concept so that other writers can fully understand what is expected of them and what they can expect from you.

Just like the plot of a story can change so too can life. If you suddenly find yourself unable to continue with the moderation of your story, discuss it with your fellow writers. Together you can decide whether to change the story into a Free Form style adventure or to simply shelve it until you find the time to resume your direction or control.

"I came up with the idea for the story is it mine?"

The ownership of all stories belongs to the community of Bifrost Bridge and the chances of your 'idea' being original are extremely rare. Not to burst your bubble but you are most likely starting up what others have considered already or has even been tried before. Your control over it depends on the style and parameters that you set as the moderator.

_____________________________________________________


All stories unless designate otherwise are considered OPEN. At the Bridge we have the following categories:

OPEN- Everyone is welcome to participate

REQUEST - You must request to join the story. Do this in the OOC discussion.

INVITATIONAL - This is by invitation only. The moderator and participants will let you know ahead of time if you would like to participate.

____________________________________________________________________________________
'Tis here I stand! 'Tis here I fight! And should destiny decree so -- Tis here I shall perish!
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2. Starting Your Story - IMPORTANT INFORMATION
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