JulyFlame's Extended Writing Challenge for October 2, 2011–January 2, 2012.
There's something that I and others have been noticing increasingly with newer spinoffs, which is that they rather lack something that earlier spinoffs and even the original series had: intertextuality. Beyond sharing a common setting (the PPC) and a very small subset of characters (Makes-Things, Luxury, the Flowers, Docs Fitzgerald and Freedenberg), there is, quite literally, nothing connecting most spinoffs these days to each other. While co-writes might occur, they remain as brief, ephemeral things, that are rarely mentioned afterwards or have little bearing on connecting the spinoffs involved.
In short, spinoffs have become fairly insular.
So this challenge is to encourage everyone to break that habit!
By which, I mean the core of this challenge is to work references into your PPC works to other spinoffs, agents, and events that take place at HQ or in the missions of others. to you
To make it extra fun, everyone can organize into teams (of four individuals at the most) to compete for a group prize; a trophy for the group, and individual prizes: art, intense beta/thinktank, or a story with a prompt as decided by you.
There will be two categories: Individual and team. Individuals who earn more points than the average points per person of the winning team get their choice of prize; the individual with the most points on their own will also get a trophy.
To qualify for the challenge, a story has to take place in your spinoff. Each reference in a piece- regardless of if it is a mission or otherwise- earns one point, with a maximum of five points per piece.
How This Works
There are several methods through which to gain points.
Bringing up a character that does not belong to you (but is not a communally used character) counts.
- Characters that do not count for this are the Flowers, Luxury, Dr. Fitzgerald, Dr. Freedenberg, Makes-Things, and any character that has not been in a story after 2008.
- Techno-Dann counts only for half a point due to being a recently prominent character.
Example: Orken (written by Guvnor) mentioning Ilraen (written by Neshomeh) counts for one point.
Example: Fritz (written by Joe) bringing up Narcolepsy (also written by Joe) does not count.
Example: Pam (written by DML) mentioning Dann (owned by Techno-Dann) counts for half a point.
Example: Lucius (written by Tray-Gnome) mentioning the Marquis (a Flower) does not count.
Bringing up fic that your character could have heard about being assigned to another group counts if the fic has been covered in another mission.
- Fics featured in missions from before 2009 do not count for this.
Example: Bringing up Cupcakes as a mission counts for one point.
Example: Bringing up C*l*br**n as a mission does not count.
Bringing up events count for a point as long as they occurred in 2009 or later.
Example: Mentioning the events that occurred in the thread—or rather, the existence of the mp3 and the forwarded messages—with the ICEP messages would count.
Example: Bringing up the Macrovirus Emergency and subsequent Sue Invasion of 2008 does not count.
Example: Bringing up Makes-Things' death does not count.
Example: Bringing up Makes-Things' return would count.
Example: Bringing up Cadmar (written by Caddy-Shack) and his shark teeth and current genderbent status would count.
There are two methods to gain bonus points for this challenge.
The first is to have this interplay directly affect the mission and whatever is happening in there by impacting the storyline in a way that the characters are placed under pressure in it and must face an obstacle to overcome. This gains a piece an additional 3 points beyond the 5 point limit, but requires there to have been a previous event earlier in the spinoff to allow it to happen.
Example: Dann and Pam steal ammunition from a Call of Duty badfic, but by Operation Sue Hunt, Pam has depleted the ammunition because she doesn't shoot well, leaving them only with a handful of flashbang grenades, and nothing else. Because Pam used up all their ammunition, their original plan to go gun down the sue can't be done, forcing them to improvise and come up with a plan that doesn't involve using their guns.
The second is to have back and forth references between two or more spinoffs. Once all involved spinoffs have completed a cycle of three or more pieces each with this back and forth, each writer earns an additional five points. This is usually easiest to complete through a co-written mission or interlude and suggesting that events or discussion that had begun in the co-written piece is continuing off the page and between what is shown in the text.
Example: Two agents (written by two different people) end up in Medical at the same time, and begin talking in a co-written piece. The first agent brings up the discussion in their spinoff with additional information that suggestions the dialogue has continued and the agents are still meeting each other to talk. The second agent also brings up the discussion with further information, or mentions meeting the first agent to talk more. The cycle repeats until it reaches a point where it is finished. References that apply to the previous examples still gain points.
If you don't want your agents mentioned by others, please bring this up.
A few things to consider, one in-universe and the others while writing:
Agents are probably interested in their environment—the PPC—and their colleagues as a general rule- HQ is their main location for socializing with people who are not their partner, and very few people would be willing to spend all of their free time with someone they work with.
If you like a spinoff—especially if it is one that gets less attention!—mention it in yours.
Avoid stuffing references in randomly just to gain points! Organic conversations about what's going on can happen if your agents are having a boring moment in a fic while waiting for something to happen, but just throwing it in at a random in will throw others off. Reference with relevance.
Example: In one as of yet unpublished mission dating back to 2008 that I still need to finish, I bring up Trojie and her previous partner due to a fire extinguisher Library is using on JF because the latter has an issue with combusting. Trojie's partner had a similar problem.
This challenge begins October 2nd 2011 (with this post), and will end January 2nd 2012.
Once you have a team sorted out, post them here.
Or, rather, join/start a team and then start writing.
Add your teams here with the following format:
Team name: Members
And have the team name link to a wiki page that will detail the point breakdown.
The team page must consist of the following:
- Team name
Each story that applies under the rules of the challenge for points must be listed under the team member that wrote it with quotes of the sections that are applicable for points.
In the case of bonus points, a summary (and link to the previous piece that the story is a follow up from, if applicable) is required for why it applies for the plot-relevant bonus points; links to all stories for the back and forth bonus points are required.