Genii Weblog

Civility in critiquing the ideas of others is no vice. Rudeness in defending your own ideas is no virtue.

Thu 20 Mar 2008, 10:29 AM
There were so many eager authors, we have started a second story unrelated to the first round robin story, Web of Deception.  This one is going to be called "Albino Butterfly", and it has a slightly different set of rules and an almost completely different set of authors.  The rules for this story are:

1) One person writes a chapter (short, long, whatever), possibly leaving the story with a cliff hanger, but not necessarily.

2) At the end of the chapter, he or she stops writing, and hands off the chapter to the next person.  For this story, we know the initial order of the authors (as it appears below), although we can still add more if people are interested.  (It would be courteous to let the next author know by phone or e-mail when their turn has come.)  Once that second person writes a chapter, it is imperative that the first person makes a link to it so later people can follow the story.

3) Never take up a chapter unless you have been named.  We don't want competing universes.

4) Generally, there are no other rules.  At best, there are a few general guidelines:

4a)  You probably should not kill off other people's characters unless the story compels it.

4b) Try to incorporate the story as it has developed rather than striking out completely on your own, but that doesn't mean you can't make it go a very different direction, or "reveal" facts that were previously ambiguous (or you choose to treat as ambiguous)

4c) It is considered perfectly acceptable to leave the next writer in a bind trying to resolve difficult to resolve situations.

4d) Bad puns may or may not be acceptable to the critics, but I can't resist them, so don't feel you must either.  Likewise, geek humor and steamy scenes filled with innuendo.  Write what you like - let the readers decide if it is appropriate for the office or not.

4e) The current writer may suggest a phrase (rather than a single word, as in the first story), such as the word "tiny tentacles of doom", which should appear in the next chapter

4f) Since more of the second group do not have their own blog, or the blog is not appropriate for this sort of thing, more of the chapters will appear on my blog, but with that author's name.

4g) Have fun.

If you would like to participate, you can respond here or e-mail me.  Don't be shy or worry about whether your writing is "as good" as anybody else's, but also don't volunteer if this is going to give you hives and make you miss your upcoming nuptials or ILUG or anything really important.

For the second chapter, I am on last rather than first.  Graham Dodge is currently working on the first chapter.  So far, the brave volunteers for this are:

   1) Graham Dodge  (Published March 21, 2008:  Albino Butterfly: Chapter 1)
   2) Keith Brooks
   3) Alan Bell
   4) John Lance
   5) Sean Burgess
   6) Jim Casale
   7) Jeremy Hodge
   8) John "Greyhawk68" Roling
   9) Graham Tucker
   10) Ben Langhinrichs

Follow the whole story on the RSS feed graciously hosted by Julian Robichaux:

Feel free to volunteer.  If you don't have a blog, ask me and I'll host your story.

Copyright 2008 Genii Software Ltd.


Thu 20 Mar 2008, 07:53 AM
I won't link to it directly, as you should read these in order, but Rob McDonagh has posted an exciting third chapter that really changes the direction of the story.  Start with my Chapter 1 - Holy Mystery, and at the end you will find a link to Julian Robichaux's Chapter 2 - A Welcome Beginning, and at the end of that, you can find a link to Rob McDonagh's Chapter 3 - Catalyst.  Watch for Jess Stratton's chapter in a few days.

Or, you can take the easy way and add the RSS feed to your RSS reader:

Copyright 2008 Genii Software Ltd.


Thu 20 Mar 2008, 07:41 AM
The concept of a mashup has been all the rage recently, but I encountered something I could only describe as an anti-mashup, Garfield Minus Garfield, a comic which has its namesake element removed, leaving more than you might think, a "comic about schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and the empty desperation of modern life".  I refer to this as an anti-mashup, because rather than taking different pieces and combining them together, this takes a whole and removes a heretofore vital element.

As I pondered this example, I realized that there could be other anti-mashups that might also expose a greater truth by removing a vital element.  For example, imagine the popular Mac vs. PC ads in a world where Microsoft won and there was no competition.  Simply edit out the Mac person and voice, and watch the ad with just the "I'm a PC" left in.  If I had the editing skills, I'd do it myself, but I bet it would be quite powerful.

This doesn't work for everything, obviously.  For example, Cathy Minus Cathy would not reveal much that already wasn't there.  But can you think of other anti-mashups that might work wll and reveal different truths than these two examples?

Copyright 2008 Genii Software Ltd.