Interactive Storytelling

What If...

Diving into your inner storytelling skills (Everyone has them)!




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Written assignment, creative writing, storytelling

Project overview

Diving into your inner storytelling skills (Everyone has them)! This assignment was to explore characters from my favorite stories and put them into other stories. How would a character from one story interact with characters from another story? Creating what if scenarios and then picking one of them to develop a world with a main character and some other characters.

Which emotion do your favorite stories leave you with? Has it changed over time? How are those similar among the three and how are they different?

The top emotion that my favorite stories leave with me is excitement. I’ve always loved Sci-Fi, speculative fiction, dystopian, and fantasy style movies because I am left with a sense of curiosity that leads to excitement. The stories that I enjoy have dark tones to them, from the past Netflix shows I’ve watched they contain dark elements. From my three favorite stories; Oryx and Crake, Donnie Darko, and Spirited Away, the emotions they leave with me are somewhat different. 

After reading Oryx and Crake I was left with excitement that lasted for years. The story impacted me so significantly that whenever I heard a song that was played while reading the book, I am instantly reminded of the story and I can feel the emotions that I experienced while reading it. For Donnie Darko my emotion of excitement was different than Oryx and Crake because the movie was scary and had many dark elements to it.

After watching the movie I became curious to know more about it because I was frighteningly excited. While watching Donnie Darko I did not register that it was a Sci-Fi movie, however after reading about it I realized that it had many Sci-Fi elements including time travel.

Lastly, after watching Spirited Away I was not left with excitement, but happiness instead. Spirited Away is a very fulfilling movie which at the end of the young girl’s search to successfully find her parents, I was left with happiness for the girl and her family. 

Put a character from one of your favorite stories into the world of another. What would happen to them? What would they do? How would they interact with the characters of those stories?

If I put Jimmy (also known an Snowman) who is the main character in Oryx and Crake into the world of Spirited Away, Jimmy would be cautious about interacting with his surroundings. Since Jimmy comes from a post apocalyptic world he would be hungry and thirsty, the first thing he would do is try to eat. His interactions with others would be awkward and weird because he has not seen other humans in years since he was the only one in his original world.

Due to Jimmy’s unfortunate circumstances of being the only human survivor of an outbreak, he is psychologically unstable from the traumatic experiences he has been through. He might become dangerous in the Spirited Away world due to his circumstances.

After getting some food in, he would make his way to Yubaba’s bathhouse where he would meet Chihiro who is the main character of Spirited Away. Jimmy would not start the conversation since he is shy, so Chihiro would be more likely to engage with him first. Jimmy would be cautious when talking to Chihiro because he would partially be in shock to see another human being, I think it would take him some time until he felt comfortable to be himself in front of Chihiro.

Pick the favorite of your "what if" scenarios; tell us about the world it would be taking place in and the main characters. Give a character a goal and some obstacles.

What If...
There was no such thing as government and instead we relied on peoples dream patterns to make decisions. Everyone’s dreams would be recorded while they slept and they would be analyzed to see the patterns amongst populations. The most significant data from the dreams would determine how civilization makes decisions. 

About the world
A computer compiles all dreams and then analyzes them to look for patterns among them. The patterns are then interpreted by the Eyes who are a gifted group of people that are able to make sense of these patterns. There are only 10 Eyes in the world and they live in a secluded area far from civilization called Nowhere. Since their sole purpose in life is to interpret dream patterns, they find enjoyment through watching people’s dreams.

Main character: Inderis
Inderis is a 27 year old woman who is a dream interpreter which are known as the Eyes. She lives in the Nowhere with 9 other people who are also dream interpreters. She does not remember her life before she came to the Nowhere. Inderis is the youngest of the Eyes. One day when she was interpreting she saw a pattern that startled her, it was a message calling out her name to find Echo. Baffled by this message, since no pattern has ever called out to any of the Eyes before, she went to her friend Kiav to tell him what she saw. 

Inderis’s goal:
To leave Nowhere and find Echo

Inderis’s obstacles: 
Venturing out into the unknown - When Inderis decides to leave Nowhere to find Echo, she is leaving her comfortable life behind to follow the pattern. This is something no one has done before.

Taking risks - She must take many risks along her journey. She has to hide her true identity because since she is an Eye, she is not allowed to live in society. She must be cautious of who she trusts, and along her journey find herself.

Culture shock - Entering a society completely foreign to her she experiences culture shock. She must adapt to her surroundings.

Other characters:
Kiav is a 30 year old man who is one of the Eyes. He is Inderis’s best friend and they have known each other for 5 years. Kiav who likes to think he looks out for Inderis is the smartest Eyes of them all and claims he remembers his life before he came to Nowhere. 

Echo is a 16 year old girl living in Sapphire city with her 50 year old father. Her dad is a history professor at Sapphire University. Echo likes reading and painting. She works part time at the Sapphire University library because they have an ornate selection of books. Sometimes she hears the books whispering to her. Echo has never met her mother, her father says she died in a car accident while Echo was only 5 years old. Echo misses having a mother. When Echo paints, she feels a connection to her mother because she was an artist. 

What If's...

  • What if animals lived alongside with humans with their own infrastructures and government
  • What if the sky was red instead of blue and the gravitational pull was much weaker like it is on the moon so we almost float everywhere instead of walking
  • What if smart phones allowed us to teleport around the world instead of flying
  • What if dinosaurs were still alive and they were still the dominant species compared to humans
  • What if we lived in a society where the majority of people would be euthanized at age 30, with the exception of the top 1% of the world’s population. This law would be to lower the world’s population
  • What if humans had wings to fly around instead of walking
  • What if there was no such thing as government and instead we relied on peoples dream patterns to make decisions. Everyone’s dreams would be recorded while they slept and they would be analyzed to see the patterns amongst populations. The most significant data from the dreams would determine how civilization makes decisions

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