Author Topic: Fortnightly Writing Competition - Write About What You Know! (Voting)  (Read 5281 times)

kconan

  • After⇐---—---⇒Before
    • kconan worked on one or more games that was nominated for an AGS Award!
  Outside of being involved with developing games, many of us also have our specific interests or hobbies.  It could be an academic interest, serious or trivial, and so maybe you read a lot about that particular subject; for me that would be human evolution and World War II.  Or perhaps you partake in a semi-occasional obscure hobby, some type of (preferably unique) sport, some or all aspects of your profession, traveling, etc...What subject matter do you know about that most other people don't, that you find endlessly interesting?  Write a story that shows off this knowledge!  Maybe your reader will come away with a newfound curiosity or interest.

  If you don't know jack outside of computer games OR have a skillset suited for story adaptation...Well then you should at least be qualified to write about YOU, so write about something that happened in your life.




We will vote on:  Best Plot, Atmosphere, Word-Choice/Style, Grasp of Subject Matter, and Enthusiasm for Subject Matter

There should be trophies...The deadline is Thursday, March 17th.
« Last Edit: 21 Mar 2016, 02:53 by kconan »

Baron

  • Mittens Serf
  • Not-so-Evil Banana Dictator
    • I can help with AGS tutoring
    • Best Innovation Award Winner 2011, for the concept and management of SWARMAGS
    • I can help with voice acting
    • Baron worked on one or more games that was nominated for an AGS Award!
I've got an idea, and the deadline's not for 9 days!  It must be all the psychotropic drugs I'm becoming an expert in and will soon be writing about.... :=

This looks right up my alley!  Well, everyone's alley, but hey!

I unfortunately will probably just end up voting but encourage everyone to take as many drugs as possible.  I mean, enter the competition! 

kconan

  • After⇐---—---⇒Before
    • kconan worked on one or more games that was nominated for an AGS Award!
  The deadline is looming experts and wannabe-experts...Show off your expertise!

Baron

  • Mittens Serf
  • Not-so-Evil Banana Dictator
    • I can help with AGS tutoring
    • Best Innovation Award Winner 2011, for the concept and management of SWARMAGS
    • I can help with voice acting
    • Baron worked on one or more games that was nominated for an AGS Award!
The deadline looms when I say it looms; I have great expertise in procrastination. :)

kconan

  • After⇐---—---⇒Before
    • kconan worked on one or more games that was nominated for an AGS Award!
  Two days!  Was the subject matter to open ended?

  Should I extend the deadline?

Sinitrena

  • Mittens Serf
  • Wheel of Fate
    • I can help with translating
    • Sinitrena worked on one or more games that won an AGS Award!
    •  
    • Sinitrena worked on one or more games that was nominated for an AGS Award!
I don't know about everyone else, but I just can't seem to fit my interests with a story  - even though at least one of them should have some good stories in it. In other words, I'm still thinking about possible plots, so I would like an extention. (But I will write something, I promise, even if you do not extend the deadline, and it will probably be rather short anyways.)

JudasFm

  • Zlang-Zlang Squid Says: All Hail the Squid!
    • I can help with play testing
    • I can help with proof reading
    • I can help with story design
    • I can help with voice acting
I have exactly the same problem as Sinitrena. If it were 'you or your character write about his/her/your area of expertise' and it could be adapted to fantasy/sci-fi worlds, I'd have entered. As it stands, I'm afraid the subject matter seems too much like an essay for me, even though it's supposed to be fictional.

kconan

  • After⇐---—---⇒Before
    • kconan worked on one or more games that was nominated for an AGS Award!
  Can you write about yourselves?  Maybe some incident that happened in your lives?  If you aren't going with subject matter, then writing about "you" is another option.

  Deadline hereby extended to Saturday March, 19th

JudasFm

  • Zlang-Zlang Squid Says: All Hail the Squid!
    • I can help with play testing
    • I can help with proof reading
    • I can help with story design
    • I can help with voice acting
  Can you write about yourselves?  Maybe some incident that happened in your lives?  If you aren't going with subject matter, then writing about "you" is another option.

Sorry, no. I'm really not comfortable with that, and there aren't really any interesting stories in my hobbies or interests (past or present) so I'm sitting this one out :)

Baron

  • Mittens Serf
  • Not-so-Evil Banana Dictator
    • I can help with AGS tutoring
    • Best Innovation Award Winner 2011, for the concept and management of SWARMAGS
    • I can help with voice acting
    • Baron worked on one or more games that was nominated for an AGS Award!
I was going in another direction, with me being no more than a narrative voice that is in all my work anyway.  I also assumed this would be all right since we've never actually rejected a submission ever, no matter how off-base.... :)

This would seem to be the easiest topic of all time, given that anything can be an interest, right?

WRONG!!!

"What is your name?"

"Random AGS Member!"

"What is your quest?"

"To enter the Fortnightly Writing Thing!"

"What are you interested in?"

"The airspeeds of unladen swallows.  Wait, no, Assyrian Capitols-  AAAAAAHHHHHHHHH!!!!! (fall in pit)"


(By the way, this is my entry, entitled, "Excessive Self-Regulation". )  :)
« Last Edit: 16 Mar 2016, 06:38 by SilverSpook »

kconan

  • After⇐---—---⇒Before
    • kconan worked on one or more games that was nominated for an AGS Award!
That idea sounds good to me Baron. 8-)

Sinitrena

  • Mittens Serf
  • Wheel of Fate
    • I can help with translating
    • Sinitrena worked on one or more games that won an AGS Award!
    •  
    • Sinitrena worked on one or more games that was nominated for an AGS Award!
Rhythm of Colours

Her heart seems to beat in intervals of three. One, two, three. She is counting them, while really counting the claps on her hands. One, two, three. The number three is always there in her head, drowning out the music playing in the background as much as possible. One, two, three. She can’t stop counting. When she stops, she looses her rhythm and when she looses the rhythm, the clubs will fall. One, two, three. Even when there are two balls in one hand, even when there are four or five, she always counts to three. One, two, three. It is just easier that way. She can keep track of the actual position in the pattern by looking for colours, counting them as much as the three. One, two three. The numbers give her her rhythm, the colours help with the pattern. Red, blue, green.

She sometimes wonders why other people can’t see the patterns the way she does, why they tell her it gets confusing for them rather soon. For her, it doesn’t matter if there are three or five or seven balls or rings, if they get thrown up or down, if there is just one artist or two, if it is a cascade or shower or fountain or columns. She understands it in a way books can never properly describe.

She sighs, even though it is the worst possible moment for this thought, but the truth is that she can see and understand it, but actually doing it is a lot harder. One, two, three; red, blue, green. Her hands falter while her mind keeps up the constant rhythm. One, two, three. One club wavers, flying further to the outside than it is supposed to. She struggles to catch it, putting her hand too far down the handle. The next throw will take more strength and the circle the club takes in the air will be wider. It is more likely that she will throw the club away, needing to run after it, even if it is just a step. And it might even slip from her grip in the moment she lets go of it. She knows this in the split second it takes her to catch it, knows all the errors she might make, remembers all the strategies she learned to keep going. Red, blue, green.

She remembers countless hours standing in front of a mirror, so close that there is no room for even one misstep. She remembers the knob hitting her forearm and the fact that no book ever seems to mention this mistake even though she saw a lot of people doing it in the beginning. Move your elbow slightly further out – it is quite easy to avoid. She does remember some good tips too. Don’t forget to breath or bite your lips – concentrate on not doing this and the actual trick will seem so much easier. And really, a juggling club doesn’t hurt nearly as much as you might fear.

She doesn’t pay any attention to the audience. Not because she can’t. Red, blue, green. The mantra of numbers and colours in her head leaves enough room for all kinds of thoughts. There is no need to think about the steady rhythm with more than a fraction of her mind. One, two, three. It is ingrained in her from hours and hours of practice, offering her a calm close to meditation. One – red, two – blue, three – green.

But she is nervous. How could she not be? It isn’t that often that she shows her skill before an audience. She prefers to train alone, using the clubs as an interesting way to exercise, training her muscles as much as her technique.

The music changes its rhythm, the colours of her clubs change. The light is different. Remember: Red, blue, green. It is still the same, even when the lights flicker. She knows this as her cue to step to the side so that the artists behind her become the focus point for the audience. She nearly misses the moment. Neither music nor light really matter for her own rhythm, for her own patterns and the movement of her arms. One, two, three. She steps to the side, fumbling to keep the cascade under control. It should be easy. She had done this a thousand times. It is never the same when you do something in front of an audience.

The music stops abruptly, so much sooner than she expected. Was it that soon in their training? She sinks to her knees. One, two. She lets go of them, allowing them to fall. The lights flash, illuminating the pyramid in the middle of the stage. The clubs rain down around her. Red and blue and green.


I'm still missing my plot. Has anyone seen it? I'm sure it's around here somewhere... :-\

Baron

  • Mittens Serf
  • Not-so-Evil Banana Dictator
    • I can help with AGS tutoring
    • Best Innovation Award Winner 2011, for the concept and management of SWARMAGS
    • I can help with voice acting
    • Baron worked on one or more games that was nominated for an AGS Award!
Confessions of Dozisaurus

        The bedside clock glowed green with 4:23am, while the wall-clock glowed red with 4:14.  Green for go, red for stop; the stoplights of slumber.  One clock to put the fear of god into you, and another one to soothe it away.  One to motivate, the other to relieve.  One to drive, the other to brake.  One to wake, the other to lull.  One to charge ahead into the future, the other to ground patiently in the present.  The two clocks manifested the tension of the wee dark hours between wakefulness and slumber, like two ping pong paddles on either side of my bouncing head.  I hate Tuesdays.

   Of course the clocks were omnipresent.  It was the same clocks on Saturday as Monday, but it was in the small hours of Tuesday that they were at their most combative, pulling me like wild horses in their opposite-  Wait.  Was it Tuesday at all?

   My mind drifts through the half-forgotten details of another week, so familiar in its pulses and rhythms it's like an eternal dance.  They change up the music, aye, but it's always the same steps.  Like my old grandma used to say: same shit, different pile.  I should visit grandma one of these days.  But it's a long way up north at these fuel prices, and I'd have to find a cat sitter, and if I miss another garbage day the shed will be full to the brim and I'll have to borrow Big Geoffie's trailer again to make a dump run.  Besides, grandma died like a decade ago or more.

   The green clock jumps forward to 4:31am.  That means two more hours of sleep, plus a bonus snooze based on the current differential between the two clocks, as long as the baby doesn't cry and the storm doesn't shut all the roads down again.  If the power holds there might be a call at 6:15 (6:24 green time) saying not to come into work.  Those are the best days, when the whole cosmic routine breaks down and there's nothing better to do than change diapers and play tickle-fight.  Of course the wife would probably leave a list of things to do.  She's been on me about that kitchen trim for years now, but the kids don't like the loud saw and the shed is full of junk so I can't do it there unless I made that dump run.  But to do that the driveway would have to be shovelled out, and there's laundry piling up, and the bathroom needs a good scrub.  The kids will probably want to build a fort in the living room and they'll need help with moving the couch and draping the heavy blanket.  Then I'll probably get sucked into playing house or tea-party or -my son's favourite- princesses.  I don't mind the dresses or the hair clips, but why must the plot-lines be so inane?  Maybe we should just go sledding.  Too bad it's late April and I can hear the rain pelting against the roof.

   Was that a drip?  Suddenly my ears strain to detect the source of the sound.  With a house this old there are always sounds.  Settling sounds.  Unsettling sounds.  Creaks in the joists and squeaks in the floor.  Then there's the cat and his nocturnal prowlings, the furnace, the ever expanding and contracting pipes, the water heater, the battery-powered kids toys that sometimes come alive by themselves.  And the bloody devices that never want to be forgotten, with their messages and hour-beeps and endless low-power warnings.  I don't hear another drip.  Probably not the roof, or even a leaky pipe or faucet.  Maybe it's just a kid who's wet the bed all the way through?  A morning problem, whatever it was.  I snuggle back deeper under the covers.

   I am a bear in my den hibernating.  I am a mouse in a pink nest of cozy insulation.  I am a caterpillar in my cocoon, metamorphosing into a beautiful butterfly.  When dawn cracks the egg of night like a humourless drill-sergeant-chef I will emerge from my chrysalis like a phoenix, changed, improved, and energized by my hiatus from the world.  I will fix the house and tame the kids and make that big sale at work and end world hunger and build all those AGS games that have been on the back-burner for so long.  I think I'll also take up piano and call my grandmother and bathe the cat and figure out how to make sushi and write that novel and stop humming when I'm nervous and only eat vegetables before 6pm (green time) and start up the morning exercise routine again and refine my telepathic ability to control the behaviour of squirrels and break my agar.io addiction and work on that website- wait.

   I glimpse at the clock and startle awake.  How did the green clock jump ahead to 7:23am?  We're late!  My wife has to shower, the kids need to get ready for school, nobody's breakfasted, the cat has flees, the car won't start, the lunches aren't made, it was garbage day and nothing's on the curb, the washing machine broke and my work-clothes are ruined, and a voracious horde of nose-sodomizing aliens have invaded just my street as a beach-head for their conquest of the entire Earth!

   I glimpse at the red clock.  It's only 4:37am.  I don't know what I did before I got that red clock.  I think I hear the satisfying whack of a ping-pong ball, but bear it no mind as I settle down to restful slumber once again....

OK here's a better story for yas:

Land Of The Free 2.0

@Real_Margaret_Atwood: "Hey, Sally from Saskatchewan here."

@Actual_William_Gibson: "How many times do I have to tell you darn Canadians, I want no part of your military-industrial complex!"

@Real_Margaret_Atwood: "Lol.  Nice to see you too.  Oh, brother, where art thou?"

@Actual_William_Gibson: "Here and there, you know.  Technically, the GPS coordinates of my registered mailing address changes latitude and longitude every thirty minutes or so."

@Actual_William_Gibson: "That's what legal tells me, anyway."

@Real_Margaret_Atwood: "'Legal'?  I thought you, uh, 'militant libertarians' were all about taking down 'Big State Coercion', and by extension, those pesky things called laws and regulations?"

@Actual_William_Gibson: "Jobs H. Christ, Sal, I told you not to use red flag-words like the m-word, t****** d***, and BSC is trending on teh social medias, which means it's probably also trending with the alphabet spy agencies of Mordor."

@Real_Margaret_Atwood: "OMG, Ok, I think you might be overreacting just a little.  I mean, it's not like you're planning to blow up a skyscraper or something."

@Actual_William_Gibson: "Not at this time.  Maybe not literally.  And no b-word."

@Real_Margaret_Atwood: "Jesus, Billy.  What the hell are you doing over there?  You know I'm not going to be able to bail you out again, not with what I have going on here.  I've got the solar thing, we're producing megawatts and everything. I've got my slice of the nest-egg all-in."

@Actual_William_Gibson: "I know, I know.  'Big sisters are their brother's keepers,' --said everyone, always.  I am *fine*, Sal.  Don't fill your pretty greener Saskatchewanian head with thoughts of me being going full-Bin Laden into the Goldman Sachs building or on Mainstream News, burning at the Hague."

@Real_Margaret_Atwood: "I thought you said 'no red-flags', and you're dropping the Bin-Laddy bomb?"

@Actual_William_Gibson: "Nobody gives a shit about Bin Laden.  He might be dead, have eternal bad-hair day, and his job was scaring Americans, but he isn't Beetle Juice.  'Bin Laden Bin Laden Bin Laden!'  See?  Once John Wayne gets his guy, he needs a new boogeyman to chase.

@Actual_William_Gibson: "They're more worried about rounding up and arresting all the social democrats and deporting everyone who doesn't pass a Caucasoid test on ancestry.com in the US nowadays.  Just putting them in an M1-Abrams tank and firing them across that giant Wall.  Or putting them in a gas chamber- very economical."

@Real_Margaret_Atwood: "Come on, the U.S.  Isn't *actually* putting dissidents in prison and killing people without trials."

@Actual_William_Gibson: "Since that Drumpf guy was elected, all bets are off.  I give it two years till the U.S. becomes the North American Syria.  It's been great for business here, they're jumping the U.S. like rats on a ship, like liberal Vietnam draft dodgers bailing to Canada for the hippy girls and hashish."

@Real_Margaret_Atwood: "I actually have some 'illegal US immigrants' working on my farm... One was arrested for organic farming and the another had a double PhD-Physics and English- worked at a tattoo parlor that closed down.  I would lol but too sad to laugh at.  Even the Canadian government's 'arms wide open' bleeding heart immigration policies have been tested with the great USAnian exodus."

@Actual_William_Gibson: "Yeah, that would make a great keynote firestarter at your next TedX talk.  'Upstanding Canadian Businesswoman Aiding And Abetting Americans In Gainful Employment.'  Do they still do those?  Ted Talks?  Or has Hitler II drawn all the limo-liberal Hope-n-Change out of the air?"

@Actual_William_Gibson: "So anyway, business.  I know we've had our differences over the years, but I have something, something big, coming up.  Entirely legal -- in maritime law terms, anyway.  'Disruptive' would be a good adjective."

@Real_Margaret_Atwood: "I thought you said I didn't have to worry, Billy?"

@Actual_William_Gibson: "We have this all under control.  I have it under control, ok?  This isn't like the last time, with the fire and the international media crews and all of that.  That was me being a young and stupid misguided boy doing my Rock n Roll, wanna-be-badass thing.  This time it's all about the mission.  The Rev-  The R-word."

@Real_Margaret_Atwood: "Ok, but if I was your therapist- and I AM NOT.  But if I was I might say maybe you're not entirely over the international-camera-crew-drawing phase.  I mean, you might not remember how much you loved being in the spotlight at those Nowheresville, Canada punk shows, but I do.  I think maybe you crave the celebrity, the recognition more than you want to admit."

@Actual_William_Gibson: "Mom always said you should've been a shrink.  Point is, I AM going to need some help, but only just a little.  A little spotting, financially, to get this off the ground."

@Real_Margaret_Atwood: "FUCK, Billy!?  You know I can't do that!  If any auditor or white-knight investigator social-justice type were to get wind that I had connections with... with whatever is going on, then it'd jeopardize everything I have going on here!"

@Actual_William_Gibson: "Look, there are ways, ok?  We'll put it through the wash, we have untraceable crypto currencies and fences bigger than American border walls.  And besides, after the Global Economic FUBAR?  Germany has a 5th-Reich after Merkel was shot down by the New Nationalists.  Even those Lights On The Socialist Hill of Denmark, even Finland has an emergent ultra-right with Syrian refugees starving to death on their borders or being shuffled quietly into 'socialization camps' -- euphamism for forced labor.  You said it yourself: Canada is losing itself, I just heard the Prime Minister say the words, 'Keep Canada Canada' without irony the other day.  There will be no life boats from this global Titanic, except Pirate Ships.  Something, something radishal has to be done."

@Real_Margaret_Atwood: "Radishal?"

@Actual_William_Gibson: "I can't say the R-Word.  The superintelligences are listening."

@Real_Margaret_Atwood: "Ok, ok.  I can't believe I'm going to do this, again.  I must be a masochist."

@Actual_William_Gibson: "No, you're just a good sister, that's all.  I love you sis!"

@Real_Margaret_Atwood: "Shut up.  Ok, send me the amount and the details."

@Actual_William_Gibson: "You're a doll, Sally from Saskatchewan."

@Real_Margaret_Atwood: "One last thing: why are we using these ridiculous fake Canadian author names as handles?"

@Actual_William_Gibson: "Google, Apple, the NSA and friends have algos that auto-ignore crap that gets spit out by fake robot accounts- I have that info from a buddy who defected across all three.  He manufactures these, has them spit out spam, Nigerian Prince and penis pill and sexbot phishing scams and rents'em out to Anons and socialdemocrats and such." 

@Real_Margaret_Atwood: "So this is a robot account?  You're saying I'm a replicant?"

@Actual_William_Gibson: "Exactly.  All these texts will be lost in time.  Like... tears... in... rain..."

@Actual_William_Gibson: "10 minutes, actually, is the auto-erase setting."

@Real_Margaret_Atwood: "You always were the smart one.  Bye, Billy."

@Actual_William_Gibson: "Bye, Sally from Saskatchewan."

***

"Nations Without States, the largest 'floating country' with a population of more than three million residents was hit by a stray North Korean missile this evening, killing fifty thousand, including the Canadian NWS founder, Bill Green, and causing critical fractures in the seastead's hull, which may be unrepairable.  With the vast majority being American ex-patriots including progressive thinkers, billionaires, and philanthropists Elon Musk, Peter Thiel, Bill Gates, Larry Page and Sergei Brin.  Hailed, 'California 2.0', with a post-capitalist sharing-economy foundation and famous 'two-page constitution', the NWS' GDP this year surpassed that of the US with across-the-board advancements in clean nuclear, terrapower, solar, electric vehicles, biotech, nanotech, aerospace, and even two successful Mars Missions leaving the now-defunct NASA in the dust. 

"It has been suggested by conspiracy theorists that the missile actually originated from the USS Drumpf supercarrier, currently stationed a few hundred miles off the coast of Japan, and within range of the Nations Without States structure."

"US President Drumpf had this to say, 'I know Elon and Peter and Bill.  They're good guys, nice guys.  I made a lot of money on the Paypal IPO, let me tell you.'  But that NWS, I tell you, it was a losing deal.  And now they're a bunch of losers, bailing their little sailboat, unlike America, where we're winning everywhere.  Shame about the missile.  Real shame, but accidents happen. Elon should know about failed rocket launches."
« Last Edit: 20 Mar 2016, 09:54 by SilverSpook »

kconan

  • After⇐---—---⇒Before
    • kconan worked on one or more games that was nominated for an AGS Award!
I'm giving Ponch a little time to submit before closing it up later today...

Ponch

  • AGS Baker
  • Moo!
    • Lifetime Achievement Award Winner
    • Ponch worked on one or more games that won an AGS Award!
    •  
    • Ponch worked on one or more games that was nominated for an AGS Award!
Write what I know, eh? Well, what I know is how to miss deadlines! :=

Alas, I had a story I was trying to put together about me as a conspiracy loon trying to unravel the mysteries of the universe by searching for hidden kernels of truth in the Blue Cup Tools Podcast. I wanted to go for that extra layer of verisimilitude by referencing quotes from actual episodes to take out of context and use to for comedic effect. Sadly, my reach exceeded my grasp and it took way too long to mine all the quotes from the episodes. :undecided:

Oh well, it was a good idea. I just waited too long to try to put all the pieces together.

Anyhoo, congrats to those who actually managed to finish their stories. :cheesy:
*

Ponch

  • AGS Baker
  • Moo!
    • Lifetime Achievement Award Winner
    • Ponch worked on one or more games that won an AGS Award!
    •  
    • Ponch worked on one or more games that was nominated for an AGS Award!
I'm giving Ponch a little time to submit before closing it up later today...
Well, this is awkward. :embarrassed:
*

kconan

  • After⇐---—---⇒Before
    • kconan worked on one or more games that was nominated for an AGS Award!
Time to Vote!  You can vote for ONE writer for each criteria below:

Plot:
Atmosphere:
Word-Choice/Style:
Grasp of Subject Matter:
Enthusiasm for Subject Matter:


Voting period ends on close of business Wednesday, March 23rd!  There should be trophies around here somewhere...