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Some thoughts...

Discussion in 'FanFic Discussion' started by Jormungandr, Feb 6, 2012.

  1. Jormungandr

    Jormungandr Prisoner

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    I was on fanfiction.net last night, trudging through endless page after page of constantly recycled clichés and crap, and, after remembering several iRC conversations that bemoaned the cliché and “crap upon crap” nature of most fan-fiction on fanfiction.net, a thought occurred to me on how to help inject some new life into the fandom...or, at least, the fanfiction.net area.

    So, I hereby present to you, the forum denizens of DLP, an idea that could, in the future, actually make ff.net a place worth looking for decent stories!

    --
    Project Babylon.

    What is Project Babylon?

    Project Babylon is, essentially, an encyclopedia of new fandom ideas and concepts, that could help reinvigorate the stale current of stories seen on fanfiction.net.

    Since authors on fanfiction.net constantly use (and reuse) ideas and concepts for their own stories that they themselves have read from other peoples' works (see: crap building on crap), Project Babylon's content would be dispersed in a similar manner when it itself is read.

    Overtime, the general saturation of Babylon content would slowly add to the content and elements seen in the “everyday” fan-fic, either by increasing quality/depth to what could have been a “flat” storyline, or by adding new spells, magical creatures, etc. that originally would not have been seen/utilized.

    What are the goals of Project Babylon?

    Introduce new ideas and concepts for the writers on fanfiction.net, such as creatures, mythology, folklore, culture, spells, magical theory, etc.

    The art of “showing, not telling”: to both comply with ffnet rules and to make it entertaining to the reader, short stories/entries should be added in an encyclopedic style that contains short stories/snippets; the characters starring in these snippets/stories do not have to be in Hogwarts, or involve any known character – so long as it's set in the Harry Potter universe, it's fine.

    It would be written in an in-universe encyclopedic format, with entries and journal logs, eye-witness accounts, biographies, etc.

    Another effect of this would be to show the reader how to write 'correctly', especially when it comes to spelling, grammar, syntax, points-of-view, etc. etc.

    New content? Where would it all come from?

    Though there would be several 'rules', the content itself would come from a variety of sources; Lexicon-type “theorycrafting” derived from canon directly (Taure in particular would love this section), debunking of fanon characterizations (such as “Manipulative Dumbledore!”) by giving it a 'refresher' from canon sources, possible expansions of fanon characters and characterizations (such as “Ice Queen Daphne Greengrass” to try and bring something new out of the old (and tired), derivations from real-life legends, cryptids, and mythology, real-life customs and rites of ancient cultures (such as the Celts, Brythonic cultures, etc.), well-thought out additions such as the list of spells in our own forums, etc.: all to add more options for the average, “dumb-as-a-brick” fanfiction.net author.

    The 'rules' to this project, so to speak, would be that no item in the encyclopedia directly contradicts canon/the Books, but rather “supplements” it.

    I have several e-books/files on various subjects that could be used for these purposes, such as various vampire myths across the world, to information on dragons. If this project goes ahead, let me know, and I'll e-mail them to you.

    Want to create a Alaskan Long Penis species of dragon, that would fit in the canon Chinese Fireball or Common Welsh Green? Great! There may be something in the above book that could be used, such as a possible affinity for living in natural ice-caves, or being wingless.

    Something in Celtic culture/rites could be used for pure-blood/wizarding culture, for example: Halloween as seen in the books is a “muggle” holiday – All Saints Day and Winter Solstice are the originators.

    An article based on All Saints Day and/or Winter Solstice, that would fit into a Harry Potter story/universe, would be a great resource.

    Another great example would be a detailed overview of the Harry Potter King Arthur legend, and the Greek myths (such as with Circe), which would essentially be the original stories modified with information extrapolated from official Harry Potter canon.

    TL;DR? Useful shit derived from real-life that adds to the Universe, but doesn't contradict any of the official shit.

    Canon sources would be:

    The original books.

    Information released by Rowling, after the books ended. This includes interviews, the Harry Potter 'Prequel', and companion books.

    Pottermore's new content – the obvious exception being the stupid 'Merlin was a Slytherin' fact, due to the 500 year impossibility.

    Information/background lore added by the Chocolate Frog Cards.

    Films and Games, though these are tricky: spells and creatures that are in the films/games but are not in the books, and do not contradict the books themselves, for example, should be used; it all adds content, and it does no foul by adding them, too.

    Events that are to have been implied but not shown/referenced, such as Harry Potter's christening (see Sirius Black as Godfather), could also be included.

    Overall, this would be a pretty extensive (and large) project, but if a large group of people are involved, and they only contribute one or two pieces individually, it would make the project feasible.

    So, thoughts? Yay or Nay?
     
  2. Ash

    Ash Moves Like Jagger DLP Supporter

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    The problem here is that if two different people put forward two different ideas that contradict each other but not canon, there will just be massive arguments in which we have to decide between the two, or we have to let them all in, rendering the project a bit useless.

    Interesting idea, and one that I could support, but tricky in execution.

    Inverarity has a fanon wiki which allows authors to edit in fanon facts/pages....but that's mostly for his own stuff, not for the fandom at large.
     
  3. LINKed up

    LINKed up Chief Warlock DLP Supporter

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    Why, exactly, would it matter if two ideas presented contradicted each other? If the point of the project is to give authors a resource to gather ideas from, then it would be up to that particular author to pick which one they liked. At least that's how I understand the concept.

    Personally, I'm all for this Project.
     
  4. Jormungandr

    Jormungandr Prisoner

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    Yup - within limits, it's all about offering a variety of resources that people, authors, could use.

    I know for a fact that there's God knows how many 'papers' on magical theory/Time Turners on this forum, somewhere - all with differing opinions/conclusions.
     
  5. Arrowjoe

    Arrowjoe Auror

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    This sounds amazing to be honest. Like a mix of the best from Potter Law, Taure's canon rants and the FanFic Discussion thread.

    When it comes to two or more people with differing theory's about the same subject, the answer is obvious. Lock em in a room together and the first one out wins. And by that I mean get those people to discuss the subject and come up with a joint theory....

    DLP: Bringing Peer Review to the HP fandom
     
  6. Sesc

    Sesc Slytherin at Heart Moderator

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    In a hypothetical war of Muggles vs. Wizards, ...
     
  7. T3t

    T3t Purple Beast of DLP Prestige DLP Supporter

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    Also, how are you going to get any significant number of FFN writers to read this? What is literally the most popular fic on FFN (MoR) has not had any noticeable effect on the fandom (apart from a few copycats), and by all indications it was meant as an educational story.
     
  8. Andro

    Andro Master of Death DLP Supporter

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    You lift the quality of fanfiction by writing quality fanfiction.

    People need positive reinforcement to the idea that originality is easy. Creativity is easy. Avoiding overdone scenes is easy. The writing is excellent, and make people go "Shit, I want to be able to write like that." It's only a matter of the best writers building a big enough following for their stories that they influence fanfiction in some way.

    This encyclopedia is unnecessary. A lot of these high-quality ideas are unique - they belong in the story of the writer who came up with it and in that story only, and these are the writers capable of coming up with all these stories without help. And making them so easily accessible will dilute the quality of these ideas. I don't want to see a brilliant concept brutalized by a hundred terribly written stories.

    And also, there is no need for an expanded canon-esque universe. The biggest draw of fanfiction, for me, is that a thousand stories can occupy a thousand different visions of Rowling's world. Different places, histories, creatures, lore, theories, spells. I don't want to run into the same vision twice.

    A fanfic is someone's signature, one that shouldn't be replicated endlessly.
     
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2012
  9. T3t

    T3t Purple Beast of DLP Prestige DLP Supporter

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    What Andro said, basically. Flooding the fandom with high-quality fanfiction is pretty much the only way to accomplish this goal, and we'd need need pretty much all of the DLP authors and them some to start writing actively every day to make any sort of impact.

    Simply put, we aren't anywhere near a large enough part of the fandom to make a difference.
     
  10. Tasoli

    Tasoli Headmaster

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    It is pretty frightening when you stop and think about that. Isn't it?
     
  11. Dark Minion

    Dark Minion Bright Henchman Moderator DLP Supporter

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    Nevertheless we are well known enough to influence the part of the fandom that matters. Otherwise NMB's C2 wouldn't have reached the top spot (and that fast at that).

    People who really are into fanfiction and delve into the depths of the HP-fanfiction-fandom eventually
    • have seen the "PotterPuppetPals",
    • have heard of "My Immortal",
    • will just by her name know what kind of fan "DebsThe(Slytherin)SnapeFan" is,
    • and have come across - or have been warned of - a community called "DarkLordPotter".
     
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