capriuni: A black field crossed by five parallel lighting bolts in blue, gold, green, red, and purple (Default)
[personal profile] capriuni
I just need to blather a bit, to get my brain up to speed -- like letting a car engine warm up to get it working on a cold winter day, I suppose.


How to write, in three "easy" steps:

  1. Start at the beginning.

  2. Continue through the middle.

  3. When you get to the end: Stop.

My hardest, ever, decision (this time around) (...So far) has been to figure out where the "Beginning" is.

Do I start with my Hero's mother's pregnancy, and show the secret experiments that turned him into a "monster"?

Or: do I start when he's an adult, living in the back of his shop, in a seedy part of town, and realizing he's the only one who will take his fellow disabled customers' worries of something sinister happening seriously, because the able-bodied cops on the beat all assume they're feeble minded, and don't understand the "real world"?

Do I start at the Brink of the War, right before he's at the age where he acknowledges his wings, and figures out how to fly?

Or: do I start one hundred and nine years before his birth, and show some of the forces that created the world he has to navigate (where the physically disabled are counted as 1/2 a person, legally, and where the political struggles between nations are played out in the asteroid belt, instead of the oil fields of the Arabian Gulf)?

...This could be why I'm 21 pages behind.

It wasn't about 2:00 yesterday afternoon that I finally settled on that fourh option, there -- especially since the triggering event was a meteorite crashing to Earth, and that makes a pretty spectacular opening image. I also want to eliminate as much room for head-scratching and dubya-tee-effing as I can (especially the asteroid belt bit -- 50 years ago, you could write that into our future without question, but Hubble will receive no more maintainance, and America's final Space Shuttle mission will be this year -- right now, our future seems to be terra-firma-centric).

So the three pages I finally finished yesterday are all prologue, with the caption boxes large, wordy, and in the style of a 4th-grade history textbook: "The heroes of our past were Golden People -- don't worry your innocent little heads about shades of moral gray, children." And the caption boxes are going to look like old pages out of a grade-school textbook, too: an outdated one, with finger smudges and tears, and crayon scribbles. I hope an adult reader can pick up some of the irony, though I wouldn't be too upset if she or he got swept up in the rhetoric, at first, and only realized the shadow-side later.

Some decisions that were (slightly) easier to make:

Focusing on physical, neurologically-based disabilities for my allogory, instead of trying to encompass the entire range of "Disability." That's what I can draw on, first of all. Second, that was the focus of Christopher Reeve's speech, that gave me the willies, and spawned this plot bunny. And third, because these disabilities (Stroke, CP, MS, ALS, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, Spinal chord injury) all have a single bodily "system" in common, it's more plausible that a) cures for all of them would be found after a single "bolt from the blue," and b) the scientific and political elite would trip over their own hubris when a new range of disabilities appears in the human population that effects an entirely different system (Skeletal, rather than nervous).

This brand-new disability appears for a good reason: Science has extended the bell curve of the human life-span, and babies are being born now that would have been spontaneously aborted as blastocysts without anyone even knowing, a hundred years ago. Most of those babies are even born healthy, and grow up to lead perfectly unremarkable lives. But a small percentage of a very large population is still a large population, and has an impact on the culture. It would have been easy to make the "cause" of this new syndrome something like a new pollutant in the water, or a new "miracle drug."

But I have had it up to my teeth with the whole: "Disability appears as a punishment for Sin" subtext (and all its variations) that has been around for nearly ever, and I can't stomach adding one more grain to that pot.

Skipping the whole "A.I.: Robots-are-the-new-slave-class" trope. First of all: When I have flesh-and-blood humans fighting to have their humanity recognized, the last thing I need is mechanical stand-ins muddying the waters. And second: my protagonist will use several micro-'bots in his superheroing; if the 'bots are making decisions for themselves, than that would reduce his active role as the one who saves the day. In-story, my reasoning will be that: Yes, robotic engineers and computer scientists did manage to create true artificial intelligence, once upon a time. But once people had it, they realized they didn't like it -- that it gave them the creeps, and they didn't want such robots in their homes -- like the "Creepy Valley Effect" in computer animation, when characters are just a bit too human-looking.


capriuni: A black field crossed by five parallel lighting bolts in blue, gold, green, red, and purple (Default)

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