Thursday, February 28, 2008

Rough Draft

Like everyone has already said, this is a rough draft and I am just beginning to develop the story. I am not really sure where I am going to take it so i am still planning out the whole ending tree and all. I hope to create some kind of website to add a different medium of interaction besides just flipping pages or scrolling to a different section. I wish there was a better way to present this right now but this will have to do. Any input is welcomed.


It’s a bright and sunny, really hot Saturday afternoon when you wake up and roll out of bed onto the floor. Your mom is yelling at you to finish you chores, but all you hear is incoherent blabbering. You look out the window and see the familiar barren landscape of Mars. After taking a cold shower you decide that you should probably make your mom happy and have her stop yelling at you to do your chores. You have to wash the spaceship, rake the yard of meteors, and do the families space suit laundry.

Which chore do you want to do?

To wash the spaceship turn to page

To rake the yard turn to page

To do the laundry turn to page

Wash the Spaceship

You go to the backyard and hook the hose up to your water tower full of water you stole from another planet. You start soaping up the wings of the spacecraft. To reach the top you have to use a ladder. Unfortunately your feet are soapy and you fall off. You are taken to the hospital and find out you broke your leg.

To stay at the hospital and have people wait on you hand and foot turn to page

To go home and recover turn to Recover at Home

Stay in the Hospital

You decide to stay in the hospital because there is nothing better at home. You enjoy laying in bed and watching tv all day. People keep coming in and checking on you and serving you food. Little did you know that the cafeteria had a small accident and your food was poisoned inadvertently. You become sick to your stomach with some type of rare food poisoning. After suffering for a couple days you finally pass.


Rake the Yard

You go out back to the shed to fetch a huge rake. While you are in the shed you find a trapdoor that you have never noticed before. After much consideration you decide to explore it. After taking one step you fall what seems like 40 feet down and land hard on a pile of dirt. You turn on your flashlight and realize you have stumbled upon what seems like a deserted mining village.

To explore the village turn to page

To climb back up to the shed turn to page

Explore the Village

You mark your current spot by drawing a huge X in the dirt so that you will know where you started from. Then you start wondering around, it almost seems like a completely deserted civilization and you begin wondering if bad things are imminent. Is everyone about to pop out from hiding? Are people watching you? Will you find anything good? Even though you are worried you continue on. You come across an old fashion looking jail. Just to be funny, you jump in one of the cells and close the door; to your dismay the rusty looking jails works perfectly and it locks.

To try to dig through the wall turn to page

To try to kick down the bars turn to page

Dig through the wall

You start digging into the wall like a dog searching for a bone hidden in the ground. After 3 hours of digging you see light. You give a final outburst of energy and kick your way through. You step out into freedom but realize you are still in an unknown place and completely lost.

Turn to Explore

Kick down the Bars

Yeah, you’re manly enough to bust though the bars and save the princess from the village. Well at least that’s how you picture your escape. You muster up all your strength and wind up to kick the bars down. You let out your best Chuck Norris kick and to your amazement the bars fall like soggy toothpicks in the wind. I guess the bars were more rusty then you had expected. Good thinking.

Turn to Explore


After your near death experience you are freaked out and decide that it is probably better if you leave this unknown place and get back home. You start heading back down the trail that lead you to where you are now. You travel for what seems like too long, and things become unclear, and you wonder, “have you ever been here before?” You don’t recognize anything. Maybe you went too far and missed the X on the trail. You search for a couple hours but become really tired. You decide to take a rest and lay down. The hours go by quickly and you wake up to the daunting task of finding the X to return home. When you wake up you hear faint voices in the distance, and you begin to walk towards the voices. As you are approaching you see that they seem normal, but as you get closer you realize that something seems a strange about them but you can’t seem to put your finger on it. They notice your exhaustion and offer to help. You explain how you are lost and are tying to get back home. They gladly agree to help you out and take you home. You hop in their spacecraft but you quickly realize they have other thoughts in mind. You realize that the people are not what they had originally appeared. They are creatures like you have never seen before and they are speaking some language that you can’t understand.

Turn to Spacecraft

Telling your mom

You begin by telling your mom how you were going to go rake the yard. She gets excited because she thinks you have actually begun your chores. Her mood quickly changes when you tell her about a trap door and lost realm and abut finding your way back to the shed. She begins to wonder about your wild story, asks you if you have been doing any drugs. You knew she wasn’t going to believe your story, but you still can’t wait to tell other people. Your mom tells you that she is going to be keeping an eye on you, watching out for any drugs. She also yells that you should get back to raking the yard. You go back to the shed where it all began and grab the rake. You begin clearing the yard of stray meteors. While you are stepping back you roll your ankle on a loose meteor and have to go to the hospital for a sprained ankle.

You go to the hospital but have to sit in the waiting room for so long that you fall asleep and don’t hear your name called. So you have to wait even longer. Finally 10 hours later you get a brace and go home. You can’t walk for a week so you sit on your couch and play video games all day. You become really good at the game and invite others over to play you. Your mom yells at you all the time that you are rotting your mind and should stop playing those games. You eventually get sick of playing anyway and pack the games up to play later.

Turn to School Time

Do the Laundry

You go room to room with a cart collecting the family’s dirty suits. You wheel the cart down the street to a store called Spacesuits Galore. They tell you to come back later in the day to pick them up. On your way back to your house you decide to take a shortcut through a field. Unbeknownst to you there was a horrible meteor shower the night before. You trip on a crater and fall on your face. Because no one frequents this field you lay there for a couple hours in pain. Eventually you find yourself waking up in the hospital with a broken collar bone.

To stay in the hospital for a while turn to hospital collar bone

To go home and recover turn to page

Hospital Collar Bone

You stay at the hospital because you think that the nurses are normally pretty cute. To pursue your love interest you leave notes for them on your medical charts at the foot of your bed. Eventually some of them catch on and they start to think you are a creep. But, they play into it by flirting back with you. You think you have a chance but before anything comes about you are discharged from the hospital.

Turn to School Time

Recover at Home

You choose to go home because nothing seems more appealing then your own bed and your mom serving you food at your beckon call. You stay indoors for a while because you don’t want to venture outside and have everyone quiz you about how you hurt yourself. This leaves you with little choice of what to do all day, every day. You end up sitting in front of the tv screen playing video games endlessly. They seem to enthrall your life and change your way of thinking. Fortunately you become well again and go back out into the world.

Turn to School Time

School Time

You have had a good relaxing break from your normal long boring days at school. But it is time to get back into the swing of things and go back to school. You really hate school but are about to graduate soon. You don’t really know what you want to do with your life and are looking for a way to make a lot of money.

Climb back up
You decide that you better not risk it and are really not interested in adventure right now. Maybe you will check back later. You start climbing back up but find it hard because the walls keep crumbling under your hands. You slip and fall but luckily land on your feet like a cat falling from a tree. You start climbing up again and avoid the spot where you fell before. Once back up in the shed you run to tell your mom about the strange hole you just found in the backyard.

Turn to tell your mom


Adam Johns said...

It's a minor point, but I like how you have the reader turn to titled sections - it's a good way of organizing things in this format.

As far as bigger issues, let's start with the humor here. Now, there are some funny moments - your choice of future chores is amusing, and you're highlighting the absurdity of many CYOAs (for instance, the over the top moment when you randomly find a trapdoor).

The absurdity raises a question, though. Normally, if you're satirizing something at length (certainly if you're doing so as a formal project) we need to ask what you're trying to accomplish by making fun of something. Is there an implicit point you want to make about CYOAs? What is it?

So I enjoy the goofy story as a goofy story - but even the silliest CYOA has some kind of pedagogical point, and even the satire of CYOAs in Night of 1k Boyfriends has a point.

So, what are you trying to accomplish here?

Tony said...

I was going to say that I was a bit lost following the headers but I had copied it into word and after seeing it in the blog I thought it worked out really well.

So to start off I think you should add a bit more of an introduction to your story to lay down some more of a plot. From the three I read for class and the several others I have read as a kid, there are at least a few pages of introduction. For something of this length it shouldn’t be that long but a little more. I would also like to see some more deaths….as discussed in class to truly understand a CYOA you must die several times even if you find the ending right away. And I know that you don’t have your ending worked out quite yet so as a suggestion I think the most entertaining CYOAs have multiple ‘correct’ endings that have the same gist but come about differently. In the book I got from Adam an evil ninja is on the loose. He comes to his senses by the grandmother hypnotizing him and also just talking to some kids…so it’s the same ending but not at the same time.

As for a multimedia component you could do this in power point but having each page a different slide and maybe using random google images to add funny illustrations to add to the goofiness of the story. There might even be a way to add a link in the power point to take the reader to the desired slide (I do not use power point for anything but posters and basic presentations so I couldn’t help you with that but I assume you could do something of that nature with the program).

But overall I like the idea of the story…it just needs to be more clear and the parts need to be added that are currently missing. I’m sorta partial to outer space stories because I loved astronomy as a kid and watched a lot of Jetsons.

Dan said...

I take this as sattire. I am asusming you are making fun of some of the ridiculous choose-your-own-adventure books out there: like your sudden death of food poisoning at a hospital - pretty ridiculous! I like the randomness, too, the story seems to be for an audience of younger (most likley male) children. What I do not like is the lack of point to the story.

Allow me to elaborate (and I hope this is not insulting) but the major problem I have is that the story is kind of, for the lack of better terminology, pointless. There is no question of morality, there is no lesson to be learned, there is really not right or wrong. (Trying to do good chores, like washing a space ship can lead you to death, etc.)

Do not fear, nothing is lost! This can be an awesome core for a good story with a good point so do not discard what you wrote simply add to it. Make each of the branches a bit longer, and include some decisions that question right and wrong, morality or what a good child should do to appease an angry parent. You can really make something good out of this, look at it as the introduction. You have the intro, now its time to make a point: DO IT :)

Adam Johns said...

I'll make a combined note based on Tony & Dan's comments. Dan finds it to be lacking in overall direction, and Tony misses having a clear introduction -- it's worth noting that the introduction of a CYOA typically establishes its agenda (for instance, in Cup of Death's introduction, you already know it's going to be a pedagogical examination of Japanese culture, and that any lessons are going to be related to that). In other words, Tony & Dan's problems are actually the same.