Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Let's Start With An Idea

You know, instead of giving an instruction guide, I think I'll just show you how to make a comic, and reference the workbook every so often. If you don't like it, deal.

So...Where do you get an idea from?

Better question: What do you want to do? Make a list. And don't be afraid to put titles of anime, comics, TV shows, movies, or even books. Heck, even put in random word if that works for you.

Or you can ask a question.

Oh yeah: Don't be afraid to steal.

You need to be aware of the originality issue. There are two sides to it.

The first is that there is nothing new under the sun. On the other hand, everything is new under the sun.

Consider Romeo and Juliet. Basic Plot: Boy meets girl. They fall in love. They find out that their families are at war. They get married. They commit suicide. Everyone is happy.

Now, more importantly, consider the variations. One, both or neither die at the end. It can be a boy and girl, two boys, or two girls. Marriage is an option, or can happen after the final act. Heck, replace "fall in love" with "fall in hate" and save the romance until after the onflict. Or they can continue to dislike after the conflict.

You can even change the conflict. Instead of "different, warring families", make them of different social classes (he's poor and she's rich, or vie versa). Or they belong to different gangs. Or he's a geek and she's a cheerleader (wait, that's different gangs...). Or even ideological differences. Or one's an alien and the other's human. In essence, as long as the conlict complicates the romance, you're good to go.

You don't even have to start with a conflict. Road trips movies are always fun, as the trip changes those on it. Or you can compare societies and show that they are the same. At this stage, you can be as specific or as general as you want. Here's my scripts, and what started them, if it helps:

Miner's Glory: I just wanted to do a Western. I'm a big fan of A Man Called Horse, and I wanted a gatling gun. I was in South Dakota, and so it's Gold Rush and Native American culture fitted in. Also, I wanted a woman avenging her slain fiance.

Ogre's Pendant: I wanted something fantasy. Also, ever notice how easy it is for someone who has never met anyone in the party can become friends so quickly, betray them, and the party never blames the new member? Wouldn't it be great if they had protocols in place to deal with it?

Chinese Chess: Don't you get tired of seeing dragons slain or gone to as sources of wisdom? How about making a treatu with one for self-defense?

Hinami Neon: I'm a big BubbleGum Crisis and Blade Runner fan. Plus, I wanted to see just how nasty I could get. This answered a lot of questions in that regard.

Sex Percussions: Someone entered a title contest with this. I had to steal it. It started with a group of performing capoieristas, and degenerated from there. Now, I am using to systematically make fun of everything that I can...

Brass Ring: The basic idea was that there is always a another chance (some carousels have a brass ring that you can toss into a hole for a prize; you have a chance at the brass ring at every pass). In the Champions RPG, it's mentioned that the worst enemy a hero can have isn't the most powerful villain in the universe, but a detective with obscene skill at observation. So, what would happen if a telepathic detective went after super-heroes' secrets, and used them to make them play fair? And what would happen if those secrets were released?

Strip Poker: Everyone that is a big fan of 80's movies knows that there were a lot of movies that featured the beginning of a strip poker game, the middle of a strip poker game, or the end of a strip poker game. I wanted a full game, darn it.

Shorn Wool: Ever notice in the stories of the Three Fates you rarely hear of where the wool comes from? What if it's a metaphor for beginning your life? (Yeah, I know it's from a herd of Apollo's sheep, but what kind of story is that?)

Hope's Last Stand: I wanted a sitcom pilot script, and all I could think of was combining my work experience (at the time I was working at Taco Bell), and T-NBC was sort of fun to watch. So you got this woman reforming a fast-food joint on the edge of the parking lot with a crew of teen-agers and a pair of misfits as her assistant managers.

So what ideas have you thought of?

No comments: