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Open vs Closed Story

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  • Open vs Closed Story

    I notice that at this site most stories, or at least most of the newer stories, seem to be written by a single author. Is this just the preferred way it's done (you don't want random internet people getting their dirty fingerprints all over your masterpiece) or is it that there aren't enough people right now to keep stories other than their own active, if they even have time for that much? (I'm sure that the Newest Story list not updating doesn't help matters either.)

    I know in the past I've been to other CYOA sites where the stories are more of a community thing that people are encouraged to add to (if no one is interested enough to bother it's a sign of failure, and getting overly controlling and possessive about 'your' story is bad etiquette) and even though it obviously means things are going to get very random and writing style and quality is going to be all over the place, it can be a lot of fun as long as there's an active editor to comb out the more obvious idiots and trolls.

    I guess the Hall of Infinite Doors is the closest thing to that here?
    Last edited by mizal; 12-10-2009, 10:12 AM.

  • #2
    There are probably a good number of open stories they just aren't written by the most active forum members. Personally, I think it is hard to leave a story open. In order to even be public and published you have to invest 20 rooms. By that time you generally have an idea where you are going and how you want to get there. To make it open would allow other people to change the path of the story plus most people that contribute aren't usually high quality writers.

    HOID is definitely the big open story. Apoth has pimped it all over town, and it has grown into a lovely, terrible, and most importantly gigantic beast!! Feeding the beast took a lot of work on Apoth's part though because as you pointed out- we are not a massive community.

    DEP sometimes will find a lost open treasure in the stack of stories on the site and he'll encourage people to add to it- which is indeed fun.

    Every now and then someone random will ask other people to contribute to their story, but that doesn't garner a lot of support.


    • #3
      Yeah, I guess the room requirement would be a big factor, I didn't even think about that. I guess if I started, like, a war story and after six rooms somebody turned it into furry S&M it would be a lot different than if I'd already sunk hours and hours into a coherent plot.


      • #4
        HOID is certainly the biggest and most contributed to interactive story we have on the site... "Another Monday Morning" is another that's good (well, not really "good", just big) if you're into huge, random CYOAs.

        Katie summed it up: Few serious writers want to contribute to other peoples' stories since they probably won't get feedback on their work and most also want to keep their own stories to themselves, since then they are usually able to make a "neater" product.

        If you are into making stories with multiple authors, but still want the writing to have quality, you can either do like apoth did and continuously edit/maintain your work while "leaving the doors open" (no pun intended) to all authors, or you can team up with one or two other writers who are dedicated and just have you guys work on it (see CRACK ATTACK!).


        • #5
          Thanks for the replies guys.

          One reason I was asking is because if I do go ahead and post the story I'm working on for the contest, there's going to be a lot of loose ends. I thought it would be cool if I could get people to help me fill them in, but like I said, that doesn't seem to happen much here.

          Some storylines I may never even get around to finishing (or even starting), but I want to have the option there just in case...I'm not 100% sure because the site won't let me log on right now to check, but I seem to remember that you can't really go back and add extra paths once you create a room?


          • #6
            You might get contributions -- I just wouldn't expect high quality. My friend has an old story on here that still gets contributed rooms once or twice a year, but they're usually pretty lame. Here's one of them:

            "in the dark"

            My friend didn't end up adding that one, but someone still tried to submit it.

            About the paths: If you have other rooms attached to some of the paths in the room in question, you'll be a spot of trouble. Otherwise, you can't "add" extra paths into rooms, but you can always copy and past your writing to Word and then delete the room altogether (and then re-make the room).


            • #7
              Ahh yes, HOID was not easy to get off the ground. The trick was getting it to a sort of critical mass where it was large enough that people would add to it without solicitation.

              The problem with stories that have more than just a couple of authors is they frequently lose all coherency. If you are looking for just a massive chaotically branching mess where anything goes, Another Monday Morning is your best bet. There are a lot of stories that are smaller and follow a similar formula, but they are not worth your time.

              I think HOID is much better model because, while there is some random chaos and crap, the Hallway format allows me to control it a bit better and put up star ratings so readers know what to expect. HOID also allows for much more depth in plots. The problem with the branching patterin in something like AMM is as follows..

              Assume there are an average of 3 choices per room.

              The first room branches off into 3, which branch of into 9, which branch off into 27, which branch off into 81, which branch off into 243... and so on and so forth. Ultimately, there are very few paths that are more than 10 rooms deep and you are left with a lot of shallow and random plot paths that abruptly stop.

              HOID, on the other hand, has some completed doors that are full story loops, and others that, while not complete, go much deeper. And the Hallway itself is incredibly long, and full of secrets and fun waiting to be discovered!

              Okay, I've whored out HOID enough.
              Click it now.


              • #8

                I deleted this post.
                Last edited by ChubbyTeletubby; 12-11-2009, 05:53 PM.


                • #9
                  I've read a couple of stories in HOID that were pretty good, but most of my time was probably spent trying to figure out exactly how many doors there were...the thing looks impossibly huge, I'll probably check it out a little more this weekend. Congrats on some successful whoring there!

                  Originally posted by ChubbyTeletubby View Post

                  I deleted this post.
                  I've lurked here long enough to know this is definitely a good thing, thanks.


                  • #10
                    The last census I took there were 2238 doors and 593 sections, but this may be significantly out-dated. This doesn't count doors on separate hallway branches either. It only counts doors off of the main hallway.
                    Click it now.


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