Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Why I Write

How a writer feels about time, sometimes...

Anonymous: Why do you write game stories, Steven?

Steven: I write the game stories I write because I enjoy the challenge of creating a story from the ground up.

Anonymous: Any other reasons?

Steven: I write game stories also because of the fact that I want to hit on certain themes and topics that I hope people will be more open to thinking about. I write the stories I write to put in my own modern day twists on the classic story structure that Aesop made famous. You know? With Aesop's fables he always had morals to his stories. And I write certain stories because I want to help give gamers (hardcore and casual) the presence of unpredictability, the feeling of "Hey! I didn't see that coming!"

Anonymous: Do you try to level up in your game writing?

Steven: Well, I try but that's not why I'm writing this next piece.

Anonymous: Where do you see your script written projects going?

Steven: [Press a Hot Button on the PS4 Controller when it appears to find the answer!] (just kidding)

I have mentioned a little bit of this back when I submitted my entries titled "Where I Want To Be" but I would like to dig in a little more on what makes me go as a writer in general, and not just as a game writer. Most of the stories I write are game-centric, as in when I write my stories I have it in mind to convert this story into a video game, at least in my mind when I visualize it. I don't know what exactly to call my writing style and I'm not even sure if you can call my writing style anything, but I can tell that I pack in specific details into my scripts. I am always looking to put in the details that not only stick out but also bring intrigue to the hypothetical gaming experience.

A few stories I have written have only been centered around general screenplay work, and one of which was done by accident. Once again I had written a story where I had a video game in mind when I visualized the story, but after describing to others that my main character had a ton of narration points in the story, I was soon reminded by the others that "It's best to give the player a choice... A bunch of narration doesn't equal an actual game." I have based this story off the inspiration of a movie that I saw back in 2003 called "Master and Commander" and this custom story would be a voyage of a wandering young man who is just trying to find his way in this fictional world. Along the way, this young man gets acquainted with many friends, forms a team with them and then allows them to travel with him on the seas on his ship.

I admit that after thoroughly rereading this story, the door has certainly opened on the possibility that I might need to steer the direction of this story away from being video game-oriented and to the form of just being a general screenplay.

The main goal that I want to achieve from my writing would be to have one story of mine to be published. No matter what it is, whether it be a game story or a general screenplay or even an extensive novel, I would like to see a story that I wrote make it onto the shelves. I have tried the route of establishing a comic book story, but with the way the Comic Book Industry is acting, such as putting itself inside its own little comfortable bubble of not allowing new writers to blossom and realize their actual potential, I don't believe that I will be achieving any comic book dreams any time soon.

Having one written story of mine be published has been one goal that has always appeared to elude me one way or another. I have felt like at times I have gotten very close to realizing the sense of accomplishment with a written piece of mine, but I have also felt that whenever I get very close, something gets in the way and prevents me from having that written material of mine published. There are plenty of variables as to why one's written material just doesn't get published and I am aware of that, but I have been going at this for well over 6 years now, dating back to Mid 2008. I know that I have certainly improved with my writing since 2008, but I have been a poor judge as to how good my writing is exactly.

A writer's life is hard, and sometimes a writer's life is very hard. I have been told this many times by not only members of the Video Game Industry, but also from people of various other industries as well. Writers are not well spoken for in most cases and it can be difficult for a group of writers to receive proper representation for what they do and for what they are trying to accomplish. Is there a writer's union? No, there isn't, and I go back and forth on that idea. I do believe that writers deserve to have their own department where they can feel free to express how they feel collectively as a community and bounce ideas off each other. I believe the position of a writer should be treated with care and most of all I believe that new up and coming writers are especially lacking proper representation in every creative industry, and they need representation too.

I write my stories because I firmly believe that I have what it takes to get to that next level and start having my material become official for the public to see. A writer has to believe in what he or she is writing about. A writer has to have that confidence in his or her ability to extensively write a series of stories where the imaginations of readers or players can be easily captured. A writer has to have that enthusiasm to explore the possibilities of the stories that are written. A writer has to be willing to constantly challenge himself or herself to develop a story from Ground 0 and take it to places where that writer's creativity can thrive.

I am always making lists for the themes, concepts and plots I want to have for my stories and I am even making side lists to dissect those categories a bit more. I have many Plan A's but I also try to have Plan B's, C's and D's if any part of my stories start to feel out of whack. I like to have detailed descriptions in my stories as long as they don't get in the way of the core action of my stories. I come up with interesting ideas for characters and I try the best I can to amplify certain aspects of those characters. I try to give my characters the feeling that they are more than what they are initially presented to be. I try to relate my characters to some forms of symbolism and I tie my more important characters to the Aesop method.

Most importantly, a writer has to love what he or she does and a writer has to write for the right reasons. A writer has to write for a purpose that's greater than the writer. A writer should convey proper messages to consumers regardless of what plot twists and story structures are used. A writer has to have fun when he or she writes. A writer has to take in both the compliments and the criticisms. A writer has to be a team player and has to be mindful of what the rest of the team says about his or her written material.

I know I am going to be there one day, in a comfortable writing position where I am allowed to be creative while also taking in helpful tips and hints as to what I should be doing to push stories forward. I know that my desire to become an official writer is too great for it to be pushed aside. There are plenty of things that I could do differently and better as a writer and there are some things that I could change entirely. What matters the most to me is that my writing skills get recognized and accepted for being serviceable for various platforms.

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