Tuesday, November 27, 2007

*SIGH* What should I do?

Well, I am sitting here in front of my computer and I have no idea what to do for my final project.

...at least, not yet.
I'm just trying to get my thoughts together.

I honestly cannot make up my mind as to what I should do as my final project. I am bouncing back and forth between a few ideas, but most of them are rediculous and would only be for my personal enjoyment......or just something to do to kill time.

After the miserable disaster of my midterm, I have been thinking about writting another Chose Your Own Adventure. However, I have also been thinking about taking these ideas and just writting normal books out of them, basically saying "screw alternative endings!" I have some ideas for this, which include:

1.) You are an FBI agent helping the NTSB to catch a sabotour who is re-creating train accidents (those that were the result of railroad neglect) in an effort to expose the crimes committed by the [insert fictional railroad name here]. I got this idea after watching some videos on YouTube as well as reading Parallel Lies by Ridley Pearson and watching the NUMB3RS episode "Sabotage."

2.) This next idea is roughly on the same lines as #1, but instead of trains, I was thinking about airplanes. The reason for this is because I've spent WAY too much time watching Air Crash Investigations and researching a number of other airplane accidents. I now have a long list of things that can go wrong on an airplane and it is scaring me!
Airplanes: one million parts, all made by the lowest bidder.

3.) Who has seen Dante's Peak? This next idea is something that has been at the back of my head for some time. I'm not really sure if I'm actually going to write ANYTHING about volcanoes, but it's an idea and I might as well share it.
The narrator of this story is a volcanologist working for the USGS. This story is supposed to take place a number of years in the future. It takes place in 2028, seven years after the eruption of Mount Rainier, which devastated the city of Tacoma and parts of Seattle. The narrator, named Eric, is still haunted by the eruption of Mount Rainer (he made a poor decision which resulted in the deaths of 2,000 people, including his friend Brandon). Eric is sent by the USGS to Puebla, Mexico to study unusual seismic activity around Popocatepetl*.

*Just a little more about myself, for about 7 years of my life I lived in the shadow of this volcano. I remember that several times volcanic activity picked up and caused quite a few scares. Popocatepetl is probably where my fascination with volcanoes began.
Still not sure if I actually want to put this idea down on paper.

4.) I am a big fan of the Alien franchise and for a while I've been thinking about possibly making a sort of fan-fiction based on the franchise. This is a very rough idea in that it is only a small thought in the back of my head. The only thing I am certain of is that the USS Sulaco will be involved (for those who have never seen any of the Alien movies, it's the ship from the second movie) as well as LV-426.

5.) Another thing I'm a big geek about is tornadoes. The narrator of this story is a genderless storm chaser working for NOAA's National Weather Service. A tornado outbreak in the summer of 2009 - similar to the "Super Outbreak" of 1974 - results in the meteorologists scrambling to intercept tornadoes in an effort to gather more information. This is on the same lines as the movie Twister and what real storm chasers continue to attempt every year when tornado season arrives in tornado alley.

Most of these ideas I'm acutally thinking about just making normal stories out of them (forget CYOA), but I'm still not sure. Numbers 3 and 5 will most likely by CYOAs, but the others are probably going to be just normal stories.


The last idea I had was to completely redo my midterm project, but that is probably going to be a pain.


LSack said...

Listen dude, my midterm was probably as much a disaster as yours given that it was an essay I put together in one and a half days that had no real "point." On top of that, I can understand vacaillating between ideas-- I do it constantly, so let's see if I can help you out a bit.

As far as writing a straight short story/novel-- what does that have to do with Narrative and Technology? Granted, it's an English Lit. class, but I could do the same thing you're talking about in my intermediate fiction writing class and it would probably be more relevant because that class does not have as much specificity as this one. Would there be anything new to this short story? Write it, have someone read and footnote it with their thoughts and feelings? I'd be willing to do that for you if you wanted to go that direction. Or, if you wrote the short story, write another congruent story of the person reading it (who then footnotes with their story ala Johnny Truant) to produce something like House of Leaves.

Otherwise, I'd en(dis)courage you to write the fanfiction about Alien only because I plan to do something similar with meta-fiction. In fact, if you're interested in Forum RPG's and X-Men, contact Nik or I and we can talk if you want to put together this short story of meta-fiction.

Dan said...

The problem I have is that I don't really want to try CYOAs again, considering how horrible my last one was.

I actually have been thinking about the Alien meta-ficiton. Still not sure if I want to make it like HOL (with the narrator reading the story and adding his/her own footnotes), but it looks like I'm going in that direction...or not.

I still have to think the story through, but this is what I have so far (it takes place shortly after the events in Alien 3).

Ripley is dead, the derelict on LV-426 was destroyed, and the USS Sulaco is missing. Wayland-Yutani, desperate to find an alien specimen, secretly sends a search party to LV-426 hoping that the eggs survived the explosion.
Unfortunately for them, the large room where the eggs were stored in the derelict had collapsed. All of the eggs were crushed. As the years go by, Weyland-Yutani is slowly dismantled.
That is not the end, however, because 10 years later, the Sulaco is found. She had drifted past the core systems and was now a 385 meter shipwreck orbiting Gamma Serpentis. What is left of Weyland sends a ship to investigate, hoping to retreive valuable information locked inside the ship's computer. Little do they know that other horrors lie hidden within the ship's hull.

This story is kind of based on a little question that popped into my head as I was watching the quadrilogy.
"What if the queen had left more than one egg aboard the Sulaco?"

I am taking bits and pieces from the Alien saga as well as a few bits from 2010: The Year We Make Contact.

That's all I have so far, but I think I am gonna go with the meta-fiction.

A. Benevent said...


If your head is in the Alien thing, then do it up. There's a lot out there in terms of things to help inspire you, as that universe has been pretty well fleshed out by...what is it now, four movies?

You could definitely do a lot with it, but I would encourage you to stay away from footnoting it. Everyone is pushing that really hard around here, because it worked so well in House of Leaves. I think if everyone does a project that involves footnotes stuck to the end of it that get all crazy and shit, nobody is going to have any difference in their projects.

I think what would be a better idea for this project in particular would be maybe brief vignettes between sections that were like radio chatter between various ships in regards to recent events, or maybe a character's own internal monologue. Really get inside their head. Think the way you'd think if you were in that kind of situation -- frantically and all over the place.

I don't know if this shit even makes sense, I've done so many of these comment things now. I don't know how Lance does this crap.