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Bloo's Fan-Fic (Discussion Thread)

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Dronehive
2014-06-12 17:20:46
Xenomorph
THe finished Xeno tho.

Like, Its got this "glossy, transparent" look that reminds me of the animation of Ghost in the Shell actually. Somehow, you managed to make it anime-y but not lose the integrity of the creature. I think it's astonishing.
Deathdrop
2014-06-12 17:37:17
Yautja
@BLOO: I could actually tell which Giger painting it was just from the arm. Something about the way it bends just... Yech. Creeps me right the fuck out.

This is gonna sound weird, but I love Scary Bat Hole in Mouth Guy's design because it doesn't seem entirely Gigeresque. It looks like a related, but very separate brand of unholy abomination from the Xenos. I think the contrast between the cold, wet biomechanics of the xenos and the dried out torn meat look of SBHIMG works really well.
-Bloo-
2014-06-13 01:38:34
Xenomorph
I'm so glad you noticed the contrast between the two. That "meaty" look is supposed to be really important. The whole "eating humans for blood" thing is justified for a reason beyond "it's because they're vampires," and the only reason they're called bats is because SOME of them slightly resemble real bats. Most of these guys won't even have the bat ears or wings, just those creepy eyes and that smile.

Sorry, I'm really excited that you guys are ok with me placing this monster in an AVP story.

@DH: It's awesome that you think so, since it's the GitS style that inspires me the most.

MODERATOR / LEADER OF THE SHADOW SERPENTS

PREDATORv2
2014-06-16 00:17:49
Yautja
The last 3 posts were deleted by me.


I'm only going to say this once, you stay on topic or your posts will be deleted. You ignore my warning, you will be banned. I'm tired of seeing that crap. Especially in a topic like this.




skull_ripper
2014-06-16 16:28:35
Yautja
I just managed to see your art just now Bloo, and holy shit that is some awesome stuff. The bat-like creatures look really cool, I like the bulbous foreheads and how the ears look socketed. It kind of looks like their upper mouth is hinged so it turns up a bit when the inner jaw extends, or am I just imagining that bit?

But seriously Bloo, this is truly awesome!

¯_(ツ)_/¯
-Bloo-
2014-06-23 04:48:38
Xenomorph
@SR: Nah, you're not imagining that. The top of the head shifts so that the second jaw can extend, and the bottom of the mouth just stretches. Extending its mouth feels like giving childbirth through its cheeks, and that pain is felt for as long as the second jaw is extended. And... it's a permanent change, so it's not practical at all.

The second jaw is only there to show that they're related to the Xeno. At first I didn't want to give them a second mouth since that would make them seem like dumb Xeno rip-offs, but then I decided to give every black goo monster a second mouth of some kind. It's supposed to be a reference to that Greek myth about the proto-humans who had two of everything (you know, the ones that also scared the shit out of Zeus) who were then split into two each.

(The second jaws are also a reference to this thing)

@Pv2: Uh, what happened? EDIT: OK, I just went back 4 pages in the OTT and found out what the deleted posts were about. Wow, that was a trip to read through. Anyway, I know you don't want any discussion of rape in this topic, but I have to clarify something to DW (and anyone else who wants to know):

First, I HAVE mentioned that rape was going to be something I wanted to explore in this story, so it's fine if someone wants to ask me about that. (If not here, then through e-mail. I understand if you don't want rape being brought up on a forum where some of the members might not be able to handle that kind of discussion.)

Second, it's true that there are gonna be gay people in this story. The main character is gay, so yeah. If that makes anyone uncomfortable, I'm not forcing you to read this when it gets released. But you should know there won't be any homosexual rape.

Third, there won't be any depicted (on-screen) rape at all. I decided against that a long time ago. Even though it's... SORT of justified within the context of this story (because of the Xenomorphs and how their main thing is being rape incarnate), I dropped the rape from the main character's backstory because I realized I don't have the ability to accurately write rape, especially not the way I planned it. Rape as backstory is such a risky thing to do (and it's easy to mess it up). It's also a big cop-out in terms of writing ("How do I add a tragic backstory? Let's add rape!"), so I dropped that.

Rape IS something I still want to explore because I'm trying to portray the Xeno as it originally was in ALIEN, but if I'm gonna do that, I don't want it to feel cheap. I'd rather explore rape culture through different means; a straight up rape scene won't cut it, because that would just be a tasteless scene placed into the story for the sake of getting a reaction out of the reader rather than for the sake of adding any actual depth to the character's story. The same goes for rape as backstory. The way it was, it would have added no weight to the character.

As the story is right now, none of the main characters have rape as backstory. I decided to give them different problems for them to tackle - problems I actually have experience in, so that I can write these problems to the best of my ability. Each of them have been broken down and rewritten from the ground up; some characters have been merged together, even. I did this to create them with each other in mind, to strengthen their relationships with each other and with the world around them, and to get rid of any useless characters. When I created these characters before, they were all made independently of each other, so there was no complexity to them... which was a big problem with the character who was raped.

She was raped, right, but why? Why did I decided to do that? So that she could have an excuse to be mopey and sad and shit? That's lazy - that's being dark and edgy for the sake of being dark and edgy. I want to make her sad, but I don't want her to be a Mary Sue (or Sympathetic Sue, in this case). That's NOT to say that being raped isn't a reason for being sad, but like I said, the way I had it didn't give the story any depth or weight. Every way I changed it didn't give the story any depth or weight. So, I dropped it.

Instead, the main character deals with something much different. Rather than overcoming her inability to love anyone romantically/sexually, she has to overcome her inability to be close with anyone, romantically or not (and no raped involved this time). I feel like that's a much better thing to go with, since (and I feel kinda weird admitting this on an AVP forum) it's a problem I had to work on a few years ago (and still have to work on, because I still hate meeting new people).

I do appreciate you wanting to help me with the topic of rape, DW, though I'd rather not see the video (and I'm sorry you saw it).

MODERATOR / LEADER OF THE SHADOW SERPENTS

DeathWraith
2014-06-23 06:05:38
Xenomorph
Heh, I'm not sorry I saw it, I'm sorry it happened and that it keeps happening. But yeah, I guess if you're only using it as a backstory, you don't need to see what it's actually like. I don't know how people cope with something like that, but I think the characters that have been through it should be very afraid. I also think you should distinguish the effects of xenomorph rape and that of human rape depending on how the character thinks of xenomorphs. Because if they don't consider them more than animals, the effects should be drasitcally diminished. I mean if an animal rapes you you'll still be afraid of those animals or maybe all animals for the rest of your life, but your trust in humans might actually be strengthened by this, making you want to feel more powerful as a member of your own species and I also don't think it would decrease your interest in sexuality, because you would probably still associate sex with people and not with animals. But if a person rapes you, you'll likely be disgusted with and afraid of people for most of the rest of your life and just the same with the idea of sexuality (unless you've developed Stockholm Syndrome). In this case you would lose trust in yourself because you are human, just like your rapist, and become weaker as a person. So I think a victim of xenomorphs who thinks of them as animals would become an angry, animal hating person, but sexually rather normal, while a victim of rape would become shy, indecisive and afraid of intimacy. Does this sound like proper logic to you?

READ THE RULES


A song about me and skull_ripper that I wrote:
"Yeah, uh, yea yeah, uh, yeah, crackers gonna crack yeah, uh, yeah..."
(thats what I have so far hope u like it)
-Bloo-
2014-06-23 15:44:15
Xenomorph
>"I also think you should distinguish the effects of xenomorph rape and that of human rape depending on how the character thinks of xenomorphs. Because if they don't consider them more than animals, the effects should be drasitcally diminished."

Wait, shit....... shit, I never actually considered that before, that's a really good thing to bring up. As it stands, I've always viewed a solo Xeno attack as a human-on-human rape because that's what it was supposed to symbolize in the first movie, but that's still something I feel like I wanna explore, because...

>"I mean if an animal rapes you you'll still be afraid of those animals or maybe all animals for the rest of your life, but your trust in humans might actually be strengthened by this, [...]"

...that would add a lot of complexity to the character if I made it a major theme to explore, which is making me reconsider dropping the sexual abuse backstory.

>"But if a person rapes you, you'll likely be disgusted with and afraid of people for most of the rest of your life and just the same with the idea of sexuality"

That's another thing that's making me reconsider dropping the theme of sexual abuse; the way you presented it here is actually a lot better than what I came up with before. It adds the potential for a lot of character development, which couldn't have happened with my previous backstory. See, before, the only thing the rape did was to give her an excuse to be really wangsty, and I tried to justify the inclusion of a rape in her backstory by saying this was a story about Aliens, who are rape monsters, but that was such a weak connection. What you're saying though... it could work.

>"a victim of rape would become shy, indecisive and afraid of intimacy. Does this sound like proper logic to you?"

It does. That's exactly what I tried to do before, but I never got it right. Before, this character was just raped by a random person, and the only thing that ever came out of that was her tendency to be sort of... inexplicably brooding, which, now that I think of it, would just be really annoying and too "try hard." It was stupid. (Not that I'm saying being raped by a random person is something you're not allowed to angst over, but again, the way I did it was stupid.)

But reading over your post, I instantly thought of something that would be much better. Since the character's creation, she was always supposed to have a complicated relationship with her parents, especially her step-dad. Her mother is supposed to "die" (she's not alive, but she's not actually dead, and... it's complicated and it's a story for another time) when she's, like, 4, and her step-dad is supposed to start blaming her for that death. If I added in a long history of sexual/romantic abuse from her step-dad, I think that would tie in better to her inability to get close with other people, and it would also tie in better with the Xenos.

HOWEVER, that does create another problem..... if she gets abused by her step-dad, who is obviously male, then that would create an unfortunate implication as to why she's gay, and I don't want people to think that women only become gay because a man hurt her.

It would be an interesting thing to reverse those roles - to have the father be the one who "died," and to have the mother be the one who sexually abuses her, but I dunno, I feel like that would also create another problem that I'm not seeing right now.

The general idea is that she just cannot get close to people because she's afraid of being hurt, but even more, she's afraid of hurting others. I definitely know how I want her relationships to play out because of that, but I don't know how she came to be like that in the first place. I mean, I KIND of know (because of the whole step-parent / inferiority complex / "Hedgehog's Dilemma" thing), but I don't know for sure.

Should I add the sexual abuse, or not? On one hand, it would help strengthen the fear of the Xenos, but on the other hand, if I handle it badly, it would suck and probably make a lot of people mad.

MODERATOR / LEADER OF THE SHADOW SERPENTS

Deathdrop
2014-06-23 17:11:03
Yautja
These are just some thoughts, feel free to use/discard them at your leisure.

You're the only one who can answer that question, but if you do decide to include it... Maybe this is just a stylistic thing, but try to avoid using the word "rape." Make it so that there is absolutely no ambiguity about what happened, but don't actually say it. I know this probably seems like covering up the problem, but if it's your intention to explore rape culture, I think it would really drive home how horrifically common it is if everyone instinctively understands what happened without it ever being said.

It's a lot nastier if the reader gradually realizes this, and it could also encourage people to go back and reread earlier sections with the new information in mind. In fact, maybe even avoid having a single "moment" where the reader gets clued in; have it be something you suspect/realize as you watch these characters think/react/speak. There could be a million little character moments and such, little bits of dialogue that, taken together, make it abundantly clear what happened WITHOUT making it tacky and forced (cough cough LAWANDORDER) shock value.

A good way to do this might be to have hopelessly transparent and inaccurate euphemisms for it.

I think your decision not to show it is a good one. While this story is very personal and will be dealing with very big themes, at the end of the day, it's an Alien/Predator story. Certain things can't be handled with the appropriate weight in that context, and a graphic rape scene is one of them. I think that's why the (forgive the term) "rape-ey" bits in Alien are so effective; it's visually and thematically implied out the ass, but they never come out and say it. How much creepier is it for that?

In fact, maybe that's a way around this problem: Don't have it literally be rape. Since this is (and I hope you're not offended by me referring to it like this) sci-fi story with frankly ludicrous technology/science. If what you're actually talking about is rape, maybe make it something that "stand in" for rape? I don't know what that could be or how it could work for her past, but it's something to consider.

To give an example, watch the scene where Ash tries to shove the rolled up porno mag down Ripley's throat. It couldn't possibly be more clear what's REALLY going on, but it's not as literal as a lot of the hack-written garbage police procedurals on TV at the moment (seriously, Law and Order is just terrible) As a kid, I watched that scene and thought he was trying to kill her. Now? It's tough to get through.

EDIT: I don't feel like I'm explaining this correctly. I'm not saying involve telepathic space-rape or something stupid like that, I'm saying have rape/sexual violence buried just under the thematic surface. In other words, if you're dealing with a culture where this is commonplace (Gee, imagine that...) then you don't really need the word or the thing itself, because EVERYTHING will imply it. Does any of this make sense, or am I rambling again?

EDIT2: The first minute or so of this video might be useful advice:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QX7ehbE1vc0
concretehunter
2014-06-23 17:49:48
Yautja
1. Don't overuse the word

2. Dont bring a subtle undertone of the series to be an actual topic of discussion or something the characters are aware of, This diminishes the point of having themes. This is only for xeno on human.

What I'm trying to get across is that the second we start applying human words and traits to the Alien we diminish the idea's it represents. Fear of the unknown doesn't exist when we have words for it.

Edit: Don't be John Green, Make characters be more than their conditions or the things they have been through. Traumatic experiences don't define people and it's very unappealing for a reader to see.

 photo Newsig.jpg

What would Peterson do?

-Bloo-
2014-06-24 18:19:39
Xenomorph
No no, all of that actually makes a lot of sense and I understand what you're saying. I wanna make a more detailed post but I can't right now, and I also can't watch the video right now, so I'll do those things later. But seriously, thanks for the input, it means a lot. (AND THANK YOU FOR THE LAWANDORDER THING)

EDIT: OK............ .

About gradually giving hints: Yeah, that's probably the best way to do it, instead of outright spelling it out for the readers like they're stupid. Forced shock value is something I really really wanna avoid because I hate it a lot; most of the time, it's used to be edgy for the sake of being edgy, and I CANNOT express how much I dislike that. ANYWAY, gradual hints would also leave things to the imagination, like... "how early did the abuse start," "how much did it happen," "how horrible was it," "was it the kind of abuse I think it was?" I feel like this ambiguity is a good way to go, since the reader will probably come up with a worst-case scenario regardless of what's implied, and that's what will make it scariest. And I feel like most people would assume it's sexual harassment anyway, since this is a story about Xenomorphs.

I agree with CH in that I don't want the abuse to fully define the main character, because that would be really fuckin' annoying. BUT, I do want an experience like parental abuse (sexual or not; still deciding) to have an effect on her personality to an extent, and I want it to affect some of her more serious or personal decisions in the story. Like, if I'm going to include something as horrible as parental abuse, it needs to affect the character somehow in order to pave the way for character development. It ALSO needs to affect story in a big way at some point*. Otherwise, it doesn't give the character any depth, and it ends up being a really useless part of her history. In other words, it would just be there to make her sadder or edgier for no other reason than to be sad and edgy, and......... ............................................

But yeah, that being said, the main character is just like any other person even though she's been abused, and she acts normal for the most part. Like CH suggested, the experience of abuse doesn't define her entire being; she's much more than her bad experiences, otherwise she'd be afraid at every waking moment. She can still make jokes, she still smiles and has friends, she has stable relationships (romantic and not), she likes music, she has "normal" hobbies, etc. It's only in the most serious situations of her life that these abusive experiences dictate how she behaves; it's only when things get really bad that she reverts back into the helpless 4-year-old victim she once was. And its her [at first friendly but later romantic] relationship with another character that helps her move past becoming that same helpless (and, honestly, kind of entitled and really selfish) 4-year-old victim whenever something bad happens in her life.

One reason I developed her to be like this is because she's supposed to represent one of the franchises I'm crossing over with AVP**, and I want her story to highlight the most important and complex parts of that franchise's protagonist's story. Another reason is because I used to kind of be like that, and I knew some people who were (and still are) like that. (I was never sexually abused, though, so thank GOD for that)

Anyway, moving onto the word "rape": like you both said, mentioning the word rape (and even worse, mentioning it too much) would take away from the horribleness of it all, I acknowledge that. But you should know that it was never something that was meant to be straight up discussed by the characters; like, I never planned on the characters coming together to discuss the topic of rape in some weird meta-PSA kind of way.

>"What I'm trying to get across is that the second we start applying human words and traits to the Alien we diminish the idea's it represents. Fear of the unknown doesn't exist when we have words for it."

Actually, I'm gonna try subverting that in this story. In-universe, humans are gonna try classifying and studying Xenomorphs so that they understand them, and they're gonna come up with the same kind of stuff you'd see in the Anchorpoint Essays. But later on, it's revealed that NONE of that shit is right. There's no real reason they have acidic blood, or that they developed the body parts that they have; they don't have a home planet; they don't NEED to eat, and their intelligence isn't something you can pinpoint; they don't need a Queen to make more eggs, they don't need a host to reproduce, and they're not actually made of silicone and they aren't actually living beings; Xenomorphs end up being something humans can't actually comprehend.

This revelation is supposed to foreshadow the even-more incomprehensible Empresses who come at the climax of the story (who, by the way, the in-universe humans THINK are just a type of Xenomorph Queen, but they couldn't be any more wrong).

I guess what I'm trying to do is give the characters AND the reader a false sense of security. They'll think they have nothing to fear because they know all about the thing that's supposed to be scary, but then they find out they don't know anything. (This same exact thing happens with the Yautja as well. They're gonna "side" with the humans, but then they end up being villains near the end.)

---


*This "some point" might be her first solo encounter with a Xeno. Even before that, her encounters with the other black goo monsters should do that just as well. The Chiropterans and Dragons, for example, eat humans even though they don't need to eat to survive - it's like they're doing it for dominance or power rather than to fulfill a basic need. So, I think you can say that the existence of (and struggle against) the black goo monsters is supposed to be that "rape substitute" that you suggested. There's another (REALLY HUGE) reason they eat humans, but that's for another time.

**ACTUALLY... all of the main characters represent one of the franchises I'm crossing over with AVP.

EDIT:

>"sci-fi story with frankly ludicrous technology/science (I hope you're not offended by me referring to it like this)"

I forgot to comment on this, but I really don't mind, since it's true. It's completely ridiculous, and probably only I could make something this stupid and actually show it to a group of people I like. But it's really fun creating this world anyway, and I really enjoy the discussions we all have in this thread because they help me grow as a writer. So nah, I'm not offended, it's all good.

MODERATOR / LEADER OF THE SHADOW SERPENTS

Deathdrop
2014-06-25 18:05:52
Yautja
"only I could make something this stupid and actually show it to a group of people I like"

Stop that. Seriously. Nothing on this planet is going to make your writing of this harder than constantly belittling it before it's even written. Batman is completely fucking ludicrous, and there are literally university courses dedicated to the Batman franchise.

This is going to be interesting and cool. Relax. (said the guy who's afraid to post anything he's written for fear of it sucking)
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