Technique Challenges ? CHALLENGE 4: SIMPLICITY

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction and Writing Resource' started by MistiWhitesun, Dec 16, 2004.

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  1. MistiWhitesun

    MistiWhitesun Jedi Master star 3

    Aug 16, 2004
    Purpose: To experiment writing techniques, etc., through challenges.

    By technique I mean things such as but not limited to the following: verb tense, point of view, method of opening a story, method of expressing types of scenes.

    My plan is to have periodic challenges in such writing aspects. Any suggested future challenges would be appreciated.

    (I must credit any verb tense challenges to bobilll for his [link=]future tense challenge thread[/link] and to Smuggler_Shidakis for making a comment in one of my stories that somehow led me to joke about a story being in the present perfect tense.)

    No potentially offensive material, please. This would include blasphemy and foul language.

    Approximate word count at the head of story is optional.

    Thank you. May this be enjoyed!

    [b][color=olive]Challenge 1: Present Perfect Tense[/color][/b]
    [blockquote]This is the "has _____" form of a verb. Example: "has written." Your entry should be primarily in this tense.[/blockquote]
    [b][color=crimson]Challenge 2: Monologue[/color][/b]
    [blockquote]Most of your fic should be comprised of monologue. Freely use description, but try your best to keep dialogue minimal.[/blockquote]
    [b][color=blue]Challenge 3: Conceit[/color][/b]
    [blockquote]A conceit is an extended metaphor. It is found throughout your story. In other words, throughout your story, compare some major element of it to something else (without using the words [i]like[/i] or [i]as[/i]).[/blockquote]
    [color=orange][b]Challenge 4: Simplicity[/b][/color]
    [blockquote]Write a fic in all simple sentences (which includes compound subjects and verbs). That means a subject, a verb, and one-word modifiers. No fragments, compound sentences, complex sentences, or compound-complex sentences.[/blockquote]>
  2. MistiWhitesun

    MistiWhitesun Jedi Master star 3

    Aug 16, 2004
    Challenge 1: Present Perfect Tense
    [blockquote] ? [link=]No Choice[/link], by [link=]MistiWhitesun[/link]
    ? [link=]To Feel Another Life[/link], by [link=]MistiWhitesun[/link]
    ? [link=]Devestation[/link], by [link=]The Musical Jedi[/link]

    Challenge 2: Monologue
    [blockquote] ? [link=]Sacrifice[/link], by [link=]The Musical Jedi[/link]
    ? SPOILER - [link=]Whisper to the Wild Water[/link], by [link=]ajentj[/link]
    ? [link=]Mutters[/link], by [link=]MistiWhitesun[/link]
    ? [link=]The Moment Before[/link], by [link=]The Musical Jedi[/link]

    Challenge 3: Conceit

    Challenge 4: Simplicity
  3. MistiWhitesun

    MistiWhitesun Jedi Master star 3

    Aug 16, 2004
    A/N: Okay, so does this mean this has been done, already; everyone's too busy to care; or that I'm the only one who wants this type of challenge thread?

    I guess I'll make the first entry, then?

    ~790 words~

    [blockquote][hl=lightblue][b]To Feel Another Life[/b][/hl][/blockquote]
    She's suppressed it.

    It's not as though she's had another choice. She's done the only thing she can do, knowing he's done the same if he's reciprocated her feelings, which she doubts. She's had no reason to believe he does.

    It hasn't bothered her, though. She's tended not to think about it. She's preferred it that way, actually.

    It's been easier.

    ?Not that she's ever been one to want the easy way out. But she isn't stupid. Her feelings are an enemy, as dangerous as any.

    She hasn't fought them, though. Only suppressed. They're her pet flaw, the connection she keeps to the rest of the galaxy. They have given her a way to relate. For an enemy, they have served her well.

    She has known what it is to feel. She has known what it is to cope with emotions?and, through further application, she has been able to cope with the war. She has remained a Jedi.

    Too many have not.

    Even so, the whisperers remain. The rumors have plagued her since?well, from?her trials?

    She has ignored them. Heedless of their import, she has often stood aside and watched the girl's progress. She trained her Padawan to watch after the young girl, as well. It saved his life, once.

    But that has no longer mattered. Her Padawan has died, like so many others.

    The girl has remained, though. She, too, has learned?has remembered?how to survive in a life where she isn't wanted. Though fourteen months old upon leaving her Force-sensitive mother, the girl has recalled her life before the Temple, before Siri found her on one of Krayn's slave ships and managed to get her out.

    She has known she is not Siri's child. But she has taken her cue from her rescuer and has not corrected the gossips. They would not listen to the now thirteen-year-old, anyway.

    Thirteen?and without a Master. Not that the old rules have applied, anymore?the Temple has been destroyed. All the Jedi have focused on surviving, but both Siri and she know she has little chance of training once everything has stabilized.

    If it ever stabilizes.

    Siri has watched newsvids of her dear friend's fallen apprentice. She has mourned as she knows Obi-Wan, too, must mourn. She has always seen the boy as a younger brother? much as she has always seen her supposed daughter as a little sister, or perhaps a niece.

    She has noted the ever-increasing bounty being placed on her friend's head. She has noted her own removal from those lists?her youngest friend's doing, she has supposed. The thirteen-year-old's mother had been able to tweak memories and records, and Siri has always suspected that the girl's memory has had Force-assistance from said mother.

    She has known where her friend now dwells. She has wanted to visit, to stay and support him, but she has known she cannot. His duty has been a somber one, and she cannot risk jeopardizing it? As much as she has wanted to help.

    Her thirteen-year-old friend has skipped alongside her, lately. Calling her "Mammy" and playing normal. She has excelled at such acting. Siri has supposed remembering one's family would do that to an Initiate.

    Ineesh Saalo. Her name these days has been "Ishna"?something her mother called her, sometimes. Siri has known what the two names are for; why Miss Saalo has been so different from her peers.

    She is half-caste.

    "Ishna" has not been bitter about the galaxy's turn of events; at least, not visibly so. She has seemed almost happy to be with Siri. They have enjoyed each other's company, but both have known that it cannot last.

    The time has come for them to part ways. Ineesh Saalo has stood on the platform, watching the bustling crowd with a normal amount of timidness and worry. She has looked back at Siri.

    She has run back to give her supposed mother a h>
  4. Lilith Demodae

    Lilith Demodae Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Oct 1, 1999
    As it is very nearly Christmas, quite a lot of people are busy. However, it's a fun a idea. Don't despair if it doesn't pick up until after the new year. I'm already trying to think of a way to do this and be readable....

  5. SkalenFehl

    SkalenFehl Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Jan 17, 2003
    I've been trying lately to lose my lurking tendencies and post a reply if I visit a thread. This is an interesting one. I think you have good technique, but I wonder if it compromises your ability to refrain from repetition. The words she and she's are used excessively. Is that literary suicide?

    I don't claim to be an expert writer but this is one thing that I tend to fail at occasionally. Just a friendly observation. ;)
  6. Smuggler_Shidakis

    Smuggler_Shidakis Jedi Padawan star 4

    Jul 26, 2004
    I must credit....Smuggler_Shidakis for making a comment in one of my stories that somehow led me to joke about a story being in the present perfect tense.
    Know what, Misti?

    I have absolutely no clue what you're referring to.

    But you're welcome anyway. :p

    Fascinating challenges... I'll try as soon as I get rid of this vapin' bunny about Kyp as a soccer mom... BAD BUNNY!
  7. MistiWhitesun

    MistiWhitesun Jedi Master star 3

    Aug 16, 2004
    [face_dancing] This looks like it might actually work? [face_dancing]

    [face_plain] What? I had a cookie.

    [b]Lilith Demodae[/b]:

    Thanks for the encouragement. :) I wasn't upset. I'm very patient and accepting, actually?

    I'm not really as desperate as I might seem. Trust me, when I am, I find as many new colors and markup codes as I can, using plenty of highlighter. :p

    ?What? It only happened once. :|


    Please do join in.


    Thanks for practicing your delurking in this thread. :) Join in!

    :^O Literary suicide? What a way to put it. Yes, "excessive" use would be that. Thanks. I'll have to fix that.

    Who cares if you're an expert? You [i]read[/i], don't you? Well??

    If I had any big ego about writing it would've popped when my eight-year-old friend started pointing out problems.


    I'm not surprised you don't know what I'm talking about? But you know what that tells me?

    [draws a deep breath] [i]Someone[/i] doesn't read author replies? :-oo

    It's in my response to your feedback on [link=]Question?[/link] Assuming you're interested in knowing where it came from. It had something to do with you calling it "too short" but then saying future tense gets dreary if carried out too long?

    'Bout the bunny? Er? Sorry? /:) Kyp as a soccer [i]mom[/i]? ?Do I want to know?

    We can discuss potential future challenges here, too. :)>
  8. Smuggler_Shidakis

    Smuggler_Shidakis Jedi Padawan star 4

    Jul 26, 2004
    Oh... THAT comment... I remember now.

    Yup, Kyppie is a soccer mom. :D Blame it on DarthIshtar.
  9. MistiWhitesun

    MistiWhitesun Jedi Master star 3

    Aug 16, 2004
    Anyone else interested in the challenge?
  10. Knight_Dilettante

    Knight_Dilettante Jedi Padawan star 4

    Jul 24, 2002
    I am very interested in technique based challenges. But I'm still catching up on some other stuff. I will do this. I really, really will. As soon as I have the backlog finished and can find an English text to tell me what it means... ;)

  11. MistiWhitesun

    MistiWhitesun Jedi Master star 3

    Aug 16, 2004
    Author's Note: This has been quickly done in the last half hour; please be stern in critiquing it. I tried to avoid the "literary suicide" I performed with my other one.

    [blockquote][hl=orangered][color=orangered]-----[/color] [color=lightgray][b]No Choice[/b][/color] [color=orangered]-----[/color][/hl][/blockquote]

    She has no choice.

    She's had many choices in her life, but ultimately the one she wants, she cannot have.

    Tenel Ka has lacked desire to be queen. She has lacked desire to rule the Hapes Consortium.

    But she has known the consequences of her refusal. So she has not been able to refuse.

    The Queen Mother has used her factual directness well in her rule. She has felt no pride in this, only a sense of failure.

    She cannot have her one desire.

    She's ignored this realization, pushing it deep inside, hiding it, forcing herself to pretend it hasn't existed. But it has. It has always been there.

    At least, she has been unable to remember a time when she's lacked it.

    Her old friend Jacen Solo has stood before her, visiting her in the Hapan Court in spite of the noblewomen's mistreating him. Tenel Ka has seen the question in his eyes, the question she longs to but cannot answer.

    She has known that her court would eventually choose a consort for her in her failure to choose one for herself, and from her refusal to take a slave to bed. She will not produce children out of wedlock, for a needed heir to the throne or no.

    Tenel Ka has looked into the eyes of a weak-minded nobleman she knows she cannot love and has taken him as her consort. She has felt his child within her, moving; kicking roughly. She has seen the first one's birth?a son?and has known that others will follow.

    She has felt guilt at not being able to love her consort. She's felt guilt at her not wanting to bear his children, but she must.

    Her life has not been her own. Her life has belonged to the Consortium.

    Though she's regretted her actions, she's known that she never did have much of a choice.

    And Tenel Ka has forced herself to accept that she never will have a choice.

  12. MistiWhitesun

    MistiWhitesun Jedi Master star 3

    Aug 16, 2004
    Is anyone going to enter this challenge besides myself?

    Should I just post the next challenge?
  13. Knight_Dilettante

    Knight_Dilettante Jedi Padawan star 4

    Jul 24, 2002
    Well, Misti you did pick kind of a tricky one for the first one you know ;). Some of us have gleefully avoided English class from early High School when possible.

    I will try to do one. But I don't think I'll manage it this week.

    I still love the idea of technique challenges and I really will put the muse to work on it.

  14. The Musical Jedi

    The Musical Jedi Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Dec 13, 1999
    When I first wandered in here, I went "Present Perfect? No way am I writing that..." and here I am with a bug... We'll see how this goes. ;)
  15. The Musical Jedi

    The Musical Jedi Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Dec 13, 1999
    First, I have to say that part of this was inspired by a vignette that Healer_Leona wrote about Obi-Wan and the Temple gossip machine. The characters are all Lucas's and whatnot.

    Criticize away. :)



    I have killed a Sith.

    The first Jedi in over a thousand years, and it has to be me.

    I have seen the way the others look at me. I?ve heard what they?ve said, even when they wouldn?t say it to me.

    I?ve seen the face of the Dark Side and lived to tell about it.

    I haven?t been able to sleep since that day, the day when my entire world crumbled to the ground.

    My Master has become one with the Force, and all they have to talk about is how I killed the creature who killed him. Too late, as it was, but I have killed him.

    I haven?t been able to find someone to talk to about this whole fiasco. The Council has promoted me to Jedi Knight, probably against their better judgment, and my Padawan has only stared at me in disbelief, confused by the fact that I?m not Qui-Gon Jinn. He has saved an entire planet, so he hasn?t been able to discern why I couldn?t save my Master.

    I haven?t even been able to find solace in the place that was once my home. All of the places I used to hide away, the places that were mind and I could center myself on the Force, all of them have become harsh reminders of what has changed ? and what has painfully reminded the same ? since I was last on Coruscant.

    I have thought about going to the practice gym ? but he is there, brushing past me instead of asking me to be his Padawan.

    I have thought about going to the Room of a Thousand Fountains ? but he is there, speaking the wisdom I could never find myself.

    I haven?t considered the training rooms ? he is there, baring his yellow teeth at me, smirking even as he runs my Master through. I haven?t been able to consider what a few extra minutes might have meant. I have my memories to remind me where my training failed me ? or more accurately, where I failed my training.

    I have a memory, stained in red, all other noise overshadowed by the hum of a field generator until I realize it?s my own voice drowning out even that.

    I have the feeling of pain in my heart and anger that has taken over my body, moving it into well practiced forms, attacks, and parries, while my mind was still reeling with the incomprehensible.

    I?ve nothing but the memory of touching the Dark Side, thinking it could bring back that which is gone.


    In that instant, buried in my mind with a searing clarity, I have the vision of a tattooed Zabrak who almost kills me.

    I have killed a Sith, one who killed the one person I can?t imagine living without.

    He has killed the innocence within me, the idea that I was worthy of the title I?ve been given since that galaxy-shattering day.

    I have killed a Sith, but he has had the gratification of destroying me first.
  16. Knight_Dilettante

    Knight_Dilettante Jedi Padawan star 4

    Jul 24, 2002
    Ooh Musical Jedi, that was fantastic.

    Misti, I have found yours all to be very intriging too and quite intimidating.

    But I'm not giving up yet. ;)

  17. MistiWhitesun

    MistiWhitesun Jedi Master star 3

    Aug 16, 2004
    Nice job, Musical Jedi! Very insightful! :) I liked how you have Obi-Wan so alone and lost and build up why?

    Keep writing! :D

    Thanks, [b]Knight_Dilettante[/b], but please try not to be [i]too[/i] intimidated. :)

    Don't give up!

  18. Alethia

    Alethia Jedi Master star 5

    Feb 13, 2005
    This looks...interesting. No, really, I think this definitely has prospects. Hmm...I'll definitely have to try it out sometime. Though I have to admit that 'present perfect' is a fairly interesting tense to choose...
  19. MistiWhitesun

    MistiWhitesun Jedi Master star 3

    Aug 16, 2004
    Please do, Alethia!

    Yeah, it's an odd tense. That's part of the fun! :)

    That said, now there's?

    [b][color=crimson]Challenge 2: Monologue[/color][/b]
    [blockquote]Most of your fic should be comprised of monologue. Freely use description, but try your best to keep dialogue minimal.[/blockquote]

    Have fun!>
  20. The Musical Jedi

    The Musical Jedi Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Dec 13, 1999
    You know, I could use something I wrote for the Tweens Valentine's Day challenge... is that allowed?

    Also, thank you, MistiWhitesun and Knight_Dilettante, for your kind comments. I have to say, I'm not too sure about that piece... I think it's kinda awkward. I also decided you can't use present perfect for too long of a fic. :p
  21. MistiWhitesun

    MistiWhitesun Jedi Master star 3

    Aug 16, 2004
    You're welcome; and yes, you can use things you've already written.

    But if you do use things you've already written, please proofread it and see what improvements you can make from the original version before posting.

    Thanks! :)
  22. echo-3

    echo-3 Former RSA star 4 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Mar 11, 2002
    That was deep!
    You are totally awesome.I want your autograph at the next meeting so when your a best selling writer some day.Ill have a small piece of ya.
  23. Alethia

    Alethia Jedi Master star 5

    Feb 13, 2005
    Monologue? Now that is going to be fun... Half of my original short stories are monolgoes... *rubs hands together* As soon as I find a subject, I'm definitely going to have to do this.

    And yeah, still have to do that present-perfect tense. You know, if I wasn't living in Germany, forced to attend English classes for non-native speakers, even though I am a native speaker, I'd have no clue what the heck that tense would be...
  24. The Musical Jedi

    The Musical Jedi Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Dec 13, 1999
    Thanks Eric. :) Glad you wandered over here again!

    This is actually from the viggie linked in my sig. I'll probably write something new later for this though. I like the monologue. :)


    The first time I met her, I didn?t think much of her.

    She was impressive, of course. I was surprised that such a young girl could have been elected queen, even though she had been primed for it since she was very little. Still, I thought that she was rash and unrefined; passion couldn?t make up for experience. Maintaining a typical Jedi view point, I thought that her emotion was just a mask for something else, something she could hide behind, keeping the less attractive side far from view. It wasn?t until much later that I learned her dedication wasn?t faked. Her passion was real, and she was a better person for it.

    It was hard for me to accept her, especially after Qui-Gon died. Somewhere deep inside, I think I blamed her. I can still remember how I felt, seeing that creature run my Master through. It seemed in that instant that I saw everything which had brought us to Naboo, all of the events in my life that had brought me to that point, that complete pain.

    I didn?t know what pain was then.

    She came to me the next day, and in my grief, I didn?t want to see her. But I never forgot that she took time to thank me and to offer her condolences. She made sure that Qui-Gon had a pyre befitting his rank, that all of his friends were there to see him one last time.

    It was in her nature to give so much.

    The next time I saw her was a decade later, when I had time to mourn and realize that she wasn?t the reason my Master had died. I can remember teasing Anakin in the lift to her apartment, seeing the sweat on his brow and his feet shifting in nervousness. Anakin understood that she had grown up, just like he had, in the time that they had been apart. I still expected a girl of fourteen but found a woman instead.

    My breath caught in my throat when I saw her, mirroring my Padawan as he watched her enter the room. She had become magnificent, cool and poised, though in her eyes there still glowed the amusement and heart that I had noticed, and been contemptuous of, on Naboo.

    I could see it in Anakin?s face before he confessed how he felt later that night. I recognized it because I felt the same way, wanting to see that same look on her face when she looked at me. Although my cheeks didn?t flush as his when he thought of her, or spoke with her, I knew how he felt.

    When he went to Naboo, I knew that he would not come back the same. His eyes gave him away when he got onto the transport. I was concerned for him and his conflicting emotions towards being a Jedi and being a lover. He was not the first Jedi to fall in love yet remain in the Order, and for a long time, I doubted he would be the last.

    They appeared in the arena, bound together, and I felt more pain than I expected. Her face held more emotion than I had ever seen in it, roiling feelings that spilled into the Force, and I felt an overwhelming desire that those emotions be for me. I didn?t know what had happened on Naboo, or what had brought them to Geonosis, but I knew that during that time, Anakin had consumed part of her, and she had finally claimed the part of him he?d reserved for her so many years ago on Tatooine.

    It nearly destroyed me when we had to leave her on the sands of that planet, chasing after my former Master?s mentor. Anakin screamed at me, thinking I didn?t understand how he felt. But I knew what she would have wanted us to do. Sacrifice wasn?t an unfamiliar word to any of us.

    I watched as Anakin?s love consumed him, painfully aware of how it could have been me, if circumstances had been different. I understood every slip he made about promises to be on Coruscant, about excuses to go to the Entertainment District, about going to the Senate Chambers to meet with the Chancellor and conveniently leaving out the part where he meets her for supper.

    I memorized his every pained look at staying extra days on missions an
  25. agentj

    agentj Jedi Knight star 2

    Dec 3, 2004
    Wicked stories in here.

    I swear I must have some midi-chlorians or something. I get an idea, start working on it, and a few days later someone posts a challenge that matches my story! Who knew!

    I just posted [link=]Whisper to the Wild Water[/link], an Obi-Wan Kenobi (such a popular guy!) monologue. It contains some spoilers for Revenge, so that's why I posted it on its own, just in case you'd rather wait for the movie.
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