drichardson, The Wordsmith

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10/18/2021 10:08 PM

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Taking Requests on 7/4/2009 8:41:30 PM
If you're looking for free advice from strangers on the internet, you've come to the right place. I can't give you any story ideas, but I do have some thoughts on branching plot fiction. In an effort to avoid actually writing, I came up with a set of rules that I could follow to ensure a story free of the things I object to in other BPF works. These are copied directly from my personal notes, so don't let the tone offend you! The Golden Rule: Branching plot fiction is literature. It is not a game. It should be written to entertain or enlighten the reader. It can only become a game if the reader approaches the work in that particular context. The Rule of Choices: A choice between a negative and positive option is easy. Equally so, is the choice between two positives. The most difficult decisions, and the ones that require the most consideration, are between two negative options. 1) All paths should read as a complete story, interesting in it's own right. 2) Avoid recombining paths. Choices should influence the story. A recombined path, especially to a node the reader has visited before (possibly from a previous reading, and from a different path) destroys the readers sense of control. While there may be situations where recombining paths is good for the reader or the story, they should be generally avoided. 3) The reader should be well informed before making a choice. A blind or uninformed choice leaves the reader feeling powerless. 4) Avoid purely navigational choices. The reader is exploring a narrative space, not a virtual physical space. 5) Story graphs should be acyclic. Tree structures are preferred.

Clone CD on 6/17/2009 9:02:44 PM