Wednesday, January 20, 2016

What I've Learned from Interactive Fiction

Early in 2015 I had an idea. It was a crazy, no way I could ever pull it off idea, but it took root. This is what I've learned about interactive fiction as a writer and as a reader over this last year.

I grew up reading. I read comic books, novels, short stories, fan fiction, text based RPG's and anything else that could be read. One of the more rare but always fun reads were pick your own adventure novels.

First: It's confusing. Very confusing. I started with an idea and tried to create an outline. My outline turned into a tree of possibilities. That was awesome. All the wonderful ways the story could go, but I quickly learned it's hard to keep track of those branches while writing. I ended up mixing up a few scenes that didn't read well at all. Those are hours of outline tree searching I'll never forget.

Second: It's fulfilling. Normally when I'm telling a story only one outcome is possible, but with interactive fiction I was able to explore different endings, scenes and even character deaths that would have otherwise been just passing fancies. It was nice having outlets of imagination that a single story line doesn't have room for.

Third: It makes a person think differently. At least it made me think differently. I've read a number of these types of books and even just reading them I wonder what if and end up rereading the story trying to find which choices led to which outcomes. Writing it was no different for me. I left my comfort zone of multiple points of views and dove into a single point of view story. That made me hyper aware of the other characters' actions. There was no chance to clarify in the next scene so I had to wonder if their emotions and intentions were coming across clearly.

Finally: It can be a lot of fun. It was fun challenging myself to something different. It was fun looking at the outline so differently. And honestly it was fun being able to add extras that don't normally make it into a story.

While I may not try another interactive fiction piece right away I think I could enjoy playing with the idea in the far far future.

Peace and Love!

And you're all invited to Paranormal Author Takeover Event starting today and running through the 22nd.  

Update: Lost Relic has come to Amazon Kindle. This piece took me a while to work out and even though it drove me to the edge of madness (honestly my poor husband was starting to worry) I really did enjoy writing it.

About Lost Relic of working inside a museum have taken a toll on Lillian’s passion for history. Now two strangers, each a master of his field, have shown up offering her a chance to rekindle her love. The lost temple of the Golden King is hidden just beyond the horizon of the Amazon and now Lillian has the chance to be a part of its discovery. Will she follow the prestigious historian or the roguish treasure hunter? You decide.

Buy at Amazon today or read for free on KindleUnlimited. 

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