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SimplyScripts Screenwriting Discussion Board    One Week Challenge    The August Challenge  ›  Official August/September 2WC Discussion Thread Moderators: Scar Tissue Films
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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: August 23rd, 2019, 6:59am Report to Moderator
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It began with a certain vagueness. A mist, a 'shimmer' around things that made them seem unreal. Romantic, mystical even; Adding a softness to the edges of life that didn't otherwise exist.

But then it grew thicker.

The sun disappeared from the sky. The curling tendrils of cloud and mist swallowed the streets, the buildings and the people. The entire world became a vague, shifting, intangible grey.

Fear set in, then panic, depression, then mania.

The roads became graveyards of burned out, skeletal wreckages. Planes lay silent on the runway.

Trade ground to a halt. Food production suffered. Food riots began. Canned food became a priceless commodity and people were willing to do anything, and everything to get it.

With the mist came the return of superstition. People reported hearing strange noises, or things moving in the mist, but no-one knew for sure.

Governments talked, splintered, but did...could do...nothing.

Scientists spoke of climate change, but their attempts to solve the problem failed, catastrophically.

The religious claimed it was a Divine Judgement. Such ideas no longer seemed quite so silly.

Cults formed as people flocked to those who claimed to know the truth, or merely provided the promise of food.

Hope came and went...

...But the Fog remained.





There has been an enormous growth in the popularity of online Podcasts. Series such as the Black Tapes, Homecoming, Limetown and others have attracted the attention of major studios. A new Golden Age of "Radio" has quietly begun.

We are tasked with creating 'The Next Big Thing'.

Working together, we are going to create the First Season of a Podcast provisionally entitled "Of Fog and Mist".

It is my intention that the Podcast will be produced with Professional Actors in Association with a Record Producer friend of mine.

Taking its cue from stories such as Stephen King's the Mist and John Carpenter's The Fog, the story begins as the whole world is shrouded in a thick, unexplainable Fog.

But unlike those stories, there are no scientific experiments gone wrong, or ghostly pirates lurking in the Mist, there is only the darkest side of humanity.

Of Fog and Mist is an examination of humanity and what would happen in a world where the truth is clouded and can only be half-glimpsed. A world where we are separated from each other, and even ourselves. Where no-one can see what we do under cover of Fog. Where our minds start playing tricks on us, desperation and madness kicks in and hope fades away to the grey.


More to follow.......

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Angry Bear  -  August 23rd, 2019, 9:10pm
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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: August 23rd, 2019, 6:59am Report to Moderator
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We are going to aim for roughly:

10 Episodes

Of around 25-30 minutes each.


So between 250 and 300 minutes per season.


Opinions seem to vary on how many words equate to one minute of time.

But the consensus seems to be that between 3000-5000 words equates to a 30 minute podcast, depending on the speed of delivery.

So however that breaks down between the number of entrants.


SETTING: MANCHESTER, UK.

The POV of the story will come from the characters in Manchester City Centre and the surrounding Suburbs and Countryside. Partly because that that is the catchment area for Production purposes but also because these people would be separated from the decisions made by the Government Officials, meaning all their information is second hand which will create a greater sense of mystery and helplessness.  
However, these people would receive updates from the world around them, through news channels, radio, the internet, phone calls, rumours etc. So events are worldwide, we're merely getting them from the perspective of these people.

GENRE: Mystery, Horror, Thriller, Drama, Gothic, Noir, Apocalyptic.

TONE: Creepy, mysterious, dangerous.

A world where anything can be happening just beyond the edges of your visibility. Where every interaction can be dangerous and you never know what people are going to do and where madness is slowly starting to creep in.

BUDGET: Limitless. Rogue States or Governments can try to dispel the Fog by setting off Nuclear Explosions, Militaries can go rogue and declare Martial Law, or team up with the Police to start to stockpile food for their own survival. PETA can release zoo animals, so there can be Elephants and Lions roaming down the streets.

If you can describe it, it can be done.
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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: August 23rd, 2019, 7:00am Report to Moderator
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We will start officially tomorrow and look to complete our efforts by September the 7th.


I envisage that the first week will be taken up largely with discussions about the general Chronology or events/plot, characters and such, so everyone is on the same page regarding where the story is heading.

Once we have a basic plan, individual writers can elect to write a certain section. Then we'll collate it and have a rough outline of the whole season.

I think it would be a great way of channelling the talent on here into something productive, with a definitive end goal. I also think it would be a lot of fun and generate some engaging talk and ideas.

The intention is to distribute the Final Product over ITunes, Spotify, Acast, Youtube etc.

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Dustin
Posted: August 23rd, 2019, 7:32am Report to Moderator
Of The Ancients


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The Fog was James Herbert... wasn't it?

I do like this idea... I've written a lot for radio over the past year or so and I enjoy it just as much as screenwriting. I think I might be in.


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Angry Bear
Posted: August 23rd, 2019, 7:34am Report to Moderator
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THREAD TITLE IN ALL CAPS???????  


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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: August 23rd, 2019, 7:36am Report to Moderator
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I was thinking of the film, but I might have them confused.

Pia, I'll change the Caps!
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Dustin
Posted: August 23rd, 2019, 7:49am Report to Moderator
Of The Ancients


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Quoted from Scar Tissue Films
I was thinking of the film, but I might have them confused.

Pia, I'll change the Caps!


Yeah, I Googled, there is an unrelated film by John Carpenter too. I've never seen the film but I have read pretty much everything written by Jimmy H... pre-2000 anyway.


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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: August 23rd, 2019, 7:56am Report to Moderator
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It's a pretty mediocre film from what I remember.

The rats was a lot of fun, I seem to recall. Bettered only by Shaun Hutson's The Slugs...that was great stuff for a kid.
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Dustin
Posted: August 23rd, 2019, 7:58am Report to Moderator
Of The Ancients


Action speaks louder...

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Quoted from Scar Tissue Films
It's a pretty mediocre film from what I remember.

The rats was a lot of fun, I seem to recall. Bettered only by Shaun Hutson's The Slugs...that was great stuff for a kid.


The Rats was one of the first books of his I read. I stole his idea of the white rat for my Murder of Crows script. Once the white rat was killed, all the other rats were suddenly fine again.


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Matthew Taylor
Posted: August 23rd, 2019, 8:30am Report to Moderator
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Well done for coming up with something outside of the box - and for coming up with a plan for the content after the challenge.

Will await more details before I declare if I'm in or not (although the type of story you have set up is right up my alley)


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MarkItZero
Posted: August 23rd, 2019, 8:42am Report to Moderator
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Hm... interesting. Very interesting.

Don't know much about podcasts, at least not this type. I'll check out Homecoming later today, had no idea it started as a podcast. So it's not gonna be like just a narrator telling a story? There will be actual (non-visual) scenes with characters talking, radio broadcasts, etc. Basically we're right there in the middle of events as they're unfolding.

Are you going to give us more story specifics, or are we all collaborating on pretty much everything? For example, if it takes place when the mist first arrives or focuses on years later... is this all up for debate?


That rug really tied the room together.
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LC
Posted: August 23rd, 2019, 9:04am Report to Moderator
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A very ambitious undertaking...
The difference with this type of challenge is we're not in competition with each other but collaborating as a team.

Just ruminating on a character who's blind in this scenario... Still, if PETA let's those animals loose, maybe not.  

I don't know exactly how this is going to be worked out but I'll wait to hear more.
P.S.  I re-read The Rats & Lair a couple of years ago. Pretty gruesome from memory, but very enjoyable.



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James McClung
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This is an interesting challenge. It seems to have been inspired by the current state of the world. Am I correct in that assumption, Rick?

I don't plan on participating; I'm out the game for the foreseeable future. I did want to comment, though, as I'm definitely on the podcast bandwagon atm but haven't been familiar with this side of it up until now. I tend to listen to the big ones (Joe Rogan, etc.), which are not written and have no structure. I think the free form is a large part of the appeal, but I'd be curious as to how the podcasts mentioned above fare within a narrative structure (the closest I've listened to would be Last Podcast on the Left, a true crime podcast). All this to say kudos on being timely and inventive.


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Scar Tissue Films
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Quoted from Matthew Taylor
Well done for coming up with something outside of the box - and for coming up with a plan for the content after the challenge.

Will await more details before I declare if I'm in or not (although the type of story you have set up is right up my alley)


Hi Matthew,

Would be good to have you aboard. Is there anything specifically you want to know?
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Zack
Posted: August 23rd, 2019, 9:47am Report to Moderator
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So this isn't a screenplay challenge???

Not sure I'm cut out for this sort of thing. It does sound interesting, so I'll wait for some more details before I climb aboard.


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Scar Tissue Films
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Quoted from MarkItZero
Hm... interesting. Very interesting.

Don't know much about podcasts, at least not this type. I'll check out Homecoming later today, had no idea it started as a podcast. So it's not gonna be like just a narrator telling a story? There will be actual (non-visual) scenes with characters talking, radio broadcasts, etc. Basically we're right there in the middle of events as they're unfolding.

Are you going to give us more story specifics, or are we all collaborating on pretty much everything? For example, if it takes place when the mist first arrives or focuses on years later... is this all up for debate?


One of the things we should do is listen to snatches of the most popular narrative podcasts to see the different ways they tell the story

Some are obvious, like you mention.

Narrator, separated from the story.
Journal style or found footage style where someone is recording  the happenings.
Radio shows.
Drama scenes where people are acting it out in the present tense.

We'll probably have to experiment and get a feel for what works best.

One thought that I had was that instead of a narrator there could be a blind sister character or something that people have to tell what's happening to, so you can explain the images. But that's just a thought.

The idea is that we all discuss possible events, and slowly build an interesting plot out of them. Obviously some things have occurred to me as the idea has ruminated in my head.

There are some things that are sort of obligatory. For instance at some point the people in the city would run out of food and would migrate out to the suburbs in order to go into the countryside, hoping to find food.

So that would be an obvious plot point... Hundreds of thousands of desperate people entering a little town, and basically overrunning all the houses looking for food.

So, yeah. It's all up for debate, but I've got bits and pieces to throw out to get the ball rolling.

As for where it starts.. That's definitely open to debate. We can start right in the thick of it with people already hungry and shouting at a council meeting. We could start as the first wisps of fog start to appear and everything is normal.

From what I've just posted, the former feels like the stronger choice, so far. What do you think?

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hawkeye
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It sounds very interesting and Iím certainly game for it, but thereís lots of questions to be answered for sure.  Iíll just raise some of them here and maybe you can address:

1.  Formatting. Most of us (maybe all of us, perhaps) have never written for podcasts before.  Iíve listened to podcasts often (S Town perhaps being my favorite), but have never thought about how you would actually write one. Seems all dialogue driven with no action sequences to speak of. Do you have a link to a podcast script that we can review and familiarize ourselves with?

2.  Logistics. This to me is the biggest challenge. Letís say there are fifteen of us willing to participate.  Someone needs to be the chief cook and bottle washer so that structure can be brought to bear. I would think that person would be you, Rick, so it might be good to hear your thoughts on how this comes to fruition. Letís take the overall storyline. How is that going to be developed?  You have fifteen creative people with the guidelines to work from are going to have 15 completely different story arcs and characters. You saw how just having a setting in a psychiatristís office and a bobble head resulted in a lot of wildly divergent stories. So some order has to be brought to the chaos. Just curious how that would work. Same goes for the writing of actual episodes, editing, etc.

3. Sign off.  Who has final sign off on a script?  Do we all vote on it, or again, do we place that all in the hands of the team lead? I think we just need to make that clear from the outset so that there isnít any rumblings later.

4. Legal stuff. Iím back with my legal hat on.  If weíre talking about something actually getting produced and put on iTunes and other platforms, there probably should be agreements signed by anyone whose work is used, especially where there is the potential for monetizing the podcast at some point down the road. What if it become popular? What if a second season is to be made?  What if (GASP!) a producer wanted to option it for a television series? Who owns the rights to it? These are things that should be addressed prior to it going into production lest there are any quarrels raised later.

Iím sure there are plenty of other questions but thatís all I have for now.

Gary


My web site and scripts can be found here:

Gary's web site
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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: August 23rd, 2019, 9:57am Report to Moderator
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Quoted from LC
A very ambitious undertaking...
The difference with this type of challenge is we're not in competition with each other but collaborating as a team.

Just ruminating on a character who's blind in this scenario... Still, if PETA let's those animals loose, maybe not.  

I don't know exactly how this is going to be worked out but I'll wait to hear more.
P.S.  I re-read The Rats & Lair a couple of years ago. Pretty gruesome from memory, but very enjoyable.


Ha. Yes, I feel a blind character would fit this very well.

In a way it would  be less disorientating for them, and like I mentioned above it shows someone else to describe things to her /him.



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FrankM
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Is this going to take-your-turns writing episode by episode, or are you planning something more of a group effort on each one?

If it's the first I might have to bow out because I can't write suspense to save my life.

If it's the second, I can dive into the more technical stuff (e.g., how radar, sonar, lidar, flir, etc. deal with fog).


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Scar Tissue Films
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Quoted from James McClung
This is an interesting challenge. It seems to have been inspired by the current state of the world. Am I correct in that assumption, Rick?

I don't plan on participating; I'm out the game for the foreseeable future. I did want to comment, though, as I'm definitely on the podcast bandwagon atm but haven't been familiar with this side of it up until now. I tend to listen to the big ones (Joe Rogan, etc.), which are not written and have no structure. I think the free form is a large part of the appeal, but I'd be curious as to how the podcasts mentioned above fare within a narrative structure (the closest I've listened to would be Last Podcast on the Left, a true crime podcast). All this to say kudos on being timely and inventive.


Cheers.

I had the idea a while ago and thought about making it a graphic novel, or even a photo comic, but then I got into narrative podcasts quite a bit and saw they were doing well, so I thought it would be good to go that route.

Feel free to just pop in and throw some ideas out, if you like.
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Matthew Taylor
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Quoted from Scar Tissue Films


Hi Matthew,

Would be good to have you aboard. Is there anything specifically you want to know?


Just the structure of the challenge - what exactly I will have to do.

As in, will each writer be responsible for a single episode? or are a few writers assigned to collab on an individual episode? are we all just aiming to collab on the first episode with future episodes coming in future challenges?

Can't commit just yet when I'm not sure how much I will need to contribute lol


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This is a brilliant idea for a challenge, Rick.

I have the same questions as Gary, above, especially re: contracts/ownership.

On logistics: I feel like this is unlikely to work without a showrunner (which I'm assuming would be Rick). Having a pilot episode, or half, or whatever, to read before we all sit down to actual writing would really help establish a tone for the show and a style for the writing, which I think would be necessary to keep the feel and the characters consistent. It seems to me this would work best with a traditional writer's room approach, ie. that we are all trying to match the showrunner's established voice.


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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: August 23rd, 2019, 11:15am Report to Moderator
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Some good questions.

I'm going to have my dinner, then I'll reply.
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Mr. Blonde
Posted: August 23rd, 2019, 11:28am Report to Moderator
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I think I get what you're going for, Rick, and this sounds like a good bit of fun. A couple notes/questions I feel may be important to ask:

You mentioned the idea of us (the participants, as well as yourself) plotting out the big events that made the world how it is.

You said the world is already covered in fog. How long before?
Do the stories take place chronologically, or is this like World War Z (on the smaller scale you've described) where we get individual stories of alternating time periods?
Did anything else change about the world, besides the fog?
Is there any form of communication (radio, TV, internet)?

I have a story I would really like to tell for this and I think you will enjoy it quite a little bit. Just say the word. =)


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Very interesting.

The challenge will be having a singular, distinctive voice with so many collaborators.

Even working in a writer's room, you're working off of an initial pilot and bible that establish voice.

Or, are you hoping that each episode has its own distinctive flavor?

Either way, I'm intrigued. Though, I think it will be a real stretch for me creatively.


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A few thoughts:

  • There would have to be a trip to Beetham Tower.  Or maybe the story starts in Beetham tower so we already know that the fog is at least 169 meters thick.  The sun sets over Liverpool as an iridescent mist swallows the city.  The residents wake to find a thick fog blocking all light, turning day into night.  Someone's alarm goes off to wake them for work, but it's still "night" since no light can penetrate the fog, at least at this time in the story.  They open their curtains and a milky fog lumbers on the other side of the glass.
  • Send up a drone to see how thick the fog is.  It never comes back.  It catches a glimpse of something in the air that destroys it.
  • Ben Nevis would be another destination to see if there was a way to get above the fog.
  • I would suggest that all air vehicles (planes, helicopters...) are destroyed and come crashing back down in a flaming heap.  Maybe in the future there could be someone who shows up in a helicopter.  Mystery! Why didn't he die in a flaming heap?
  • Hydroponics would be a way to grow food if the sun couldn't penetrate the fog to keep plants alive.
  • There is 1 nuclear power plant in the area, Heysham. As long as it was operating then there would be electricity in the area. Once it goes offline, then we move on to the next chapter.
  • There will be the good, the bad, and the ugly. Good people want to survive and hold on to their humanity. The bad people want to survive and don't care about their humanity. They will survive by any means necessary. The ugly don't care about surviving. They're going to do what they want, take what they want, hurt who they want, and devolve to the most basic of desires. Think 'necrophiliac cannibals'. Who is who? Every time people meet, this is the question they're going to have to ask and find out.
  • HAM radio operators will come in to play somewhere along the way. There has to be some sort of communication at distance.


This is my 2 cents. Or maybe it's 8 cents.

Either way, I'll wait to see what you want to do before I march in any particular direction.


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Dustin
Posted: August 23rd, 2019, 12:23pm Report to Moderator
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Action speaks louder...

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Narrators are cheating!


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Quoted from Nomad
A few thoughts:

  • There would have to be a trip to Beetham Tower.  Or maybe the story starts in Beetham tower so we already know that the fog is at least 169 meters thick.  The sun sets over Liverpool as an iridescent mist swallows the city.  The residents wake to find a thick fog blocking all light, turning day into night.  Someone's alarm goes off to wake them for work, but it's still "night" since no light can penetrate the fog, at least at this time in the story.  They open their curtains and a milky fog lumbers on the other side of the glass.
  • Send up a drone to see how thick the fog is.  It never comes back.  It catches a glimpse of something in the air that destroys it.
  • Ben Nevis would be another destination to see if there was a way to get above the fog.
  • I would suggest that all air vehicles (planes, helicopters...) are destroyed and come crashing back down in a flaming heap.  Maybe in the future there could be someone who shows up in a helicopter.  Mystery! Why didn't he die in a flaming heap?
  • Hydroponics would be a way to grow food if the sun couldn't penetrate the fog to keep plants alive.
  • There is 1 nuclear power plant in the area, Heysham. As long as it was operating then there would be electricity in the area. Once it goes offline, then we move on to the next chapter.
  • There will be the good, the bad, and the ugly. Good people want to survive and hold on to their humanity. The bad people want to survive and don't care about their humanity. They will survive by any means necessary. The ugly don't care about surviving. They're going to do what they want, take what they want, hurt who they want, and devolve to the most basic of desires. Think 'necrophiliac cannibals'. Who is who? Every time people meet, this is the question they're going to have to ask and find out.
  • HAM radio operators will come in to play somewhere along the way. There has to be some sort of communication at distance.


This is my 2 cents. Or maybe it's 8 cents.

Either way, I'll wait to see what you want to do before I march in any particular direction.


These are really good jumping-off points, easily worth the 8 cents

A thought or two...

Some kind of terror in the sky is kinda mandatory because mere fog does not ground aircraft. Make it thick enough, however, and ground vehicles inch along or turn into their own firey heaps.

If we have some idea how far one can see a light through the Fog, it may be possible for someone with a lantern to guide a truck to carry heavy stuff.

The world does have some experience growing plants indoors, but it takes electricity to generate the light.

Mushrooms will probably become a staple food. If the Fog comes with humidity, there's probably a lot more mold, mildew, Trenchfoot, etc.

Whether Fog comes with a side of humidity or not, there's an unanswered question about how it covers everything from woodlands to deserts more-or-less equally.

China is probably the furthest along in weather control technology, if only because they have few qualms about experimenting out in the open over their own ample territory. Attempts to burn off the Fog will probably start there.

Edit: and remember that thereís a secret time machine at Ben Nevis. That could come in handy



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FrankM  -  August 23rd, 2019, 1:03pm
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Like Blondie, I first thought of World War Z (the book, not movie) as a collection of personal accounts rather than a running storyline.

I think I'm in. I already have some thoughts to contribute but I'll wait until we've the greenlight.

Psyched for the challenge and something different!
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How exactly will this be written? Screenplay format, or something altogether different?

Concept-wise, I'm very interested. Especially if it's a group collaboration.


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For me, the existing work that sounds most similar to this project is Josť Saramago's novel Blindness, and the film adaptation from 2008.


Quoted from JEStaats
Like Blondie, I first thought of World War Z (the book, not movie) as a collection of personal accounts rather than a running storyline.


Would be very interesting to have various personal accounts that occasionally integrate, where we experience one person/group's side of the account, and then the other person's side in a later episode and reveal key context. Could be a very chilling moment where a group encounters a few people at a sweets shop that are cordial and whom they trade supplies with -- then a later episode goes inside the shop to reveal that the supplies being traded for were to medically treat captives held for forced pregnancies, or whatever terrible thing. Or the reverse -- the seemingly insane and violent man that a group turns away from their apartment building and leaves to die later turns out to have been desperately trying to save his dying kid.


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I like your notes.

The way I write, I figure out the world and then populate it with characters and story.
Once we get the world dialed in a little bit, I'll come up with some characters and throw them to the wolves.

Ultimately this is someone else's project, and I'm just exercising my creative muscles right now.

It feels good.


Quoted from FrankM


Some kind of terror in the sky is kinda mandatory because mere fog does not ground aircraft. Make it thick enough, however, and ground vehicles inch along or turn into their own fiery heaps.  
I was thinking some kind of chaff or radar/IR reflective element to the fog.
That would eliminate any use of FLIR or radar, and thus eliminate the need to explain what they are or how they work. Maybe later in the story a LSA (Ultralight/gyro-copter) could come into play.


If we have some idea how far one can see a light through the Fog, it may be possible for someone with a lantern to guide a truck to carry heavy stuff.
I would prefer that the fog not be too thick for the entire story. It narrows our options if everyday is dark as night. There has to be a race against the setting sun.

The world does have some experience growing plants indoors, but it takes electricity to generate the light.
That's why I mentioned the nuclear power plant.  It shouldn't need deliveries of coal or other fossil fuels, and as far as my limited knowledge goes, they can run for a long time with minimal maintenance. However, it has to die at some point to push our characters to the next stage.

Mushrooms will probably become a staple food. If the Fog comes with humidity, there's probably a lot more mold, mildew, Trenchfoot, etc.
That's gross. I didn't think of the moisture and how damp everything would be all the time. It could be a good reason why fire torches don't work well.

Whether Fog comes with a side of humidity or not, there's an unanswered question about how it covers everything from woodlands to deserts more-or-less equally.
We don't need to answer this just yet. Maybe we never answer it. What was in the case that Jules and Vincent got back for Marsellus Wallace?

China is probably the furthest along in weather control technology, if only because they have few qualms about experimenting out in the open over their own ample territory. Attempts to burn off the Fog will probably start there.
But China is far away. Any news about burning the fog off in China will have to come from third or fourth or nineteenth hand.  Maybe we start locally. Alanbrooke Barracks
is nearby but I'm not sure they'd have the proper munitions to test blowing some fog up.
Maybe someone a little more on the local side could answer that.



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I'm excited to hear more details from Rick, because I have a second idea. "212" and "Telephone".


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Quoted from hawkeye
It sounds very interesting and Iím certainly game for it, but thereís lots of questions to be answered for sure.  Iíll just raise some of them here and maybe you can address:

1.  Formatting. Most of us (maybe all of us, perhaps) have never written for podcasts before.  Iíve listened to podcasts often (S Town perhaps being my favorite), but have never thought about how you would actually write one. Seems all dialogue driven with no action sequences to speak of. Do you have a link to a podcast script that we can review and familiarize ourselves with?

2.  Logistics. This to me is the biggest challenge. Letís say there are fifteen of us willing to participate.  Someone needs to be the chief cook and bottle washer so that structure can be brought to bear. I would think that person would be you, Rick, so it might be good to hear your thoughts on how this comes to fruition. Letís take the overall storyline. How is that going to be developed?  You have fifteen creative people with the guidelines to work from are going to have 15 completely different story arcs and characters. You saw how just having a setting in a psychiatristís office and a bobble head resulted in a lot of wildly divergent stories. So some order has to be brought to the chaos. Just curious how that would work. Same goes for the writing of actual episodes, editing, etc.

3. Sign off.  Who has final sign off on a script?  Do we all vote on it, or again, do we place that all in the hands of the team lead? I think we just need to make that clear from the outset so that there isnít any rumblings later.

4. Legal stuff. Iím back with my legal hat on.  If weíre talking about something actually getting produced and put on iTunes and other platforms, there probably should be agreements signed by anyone whose work is used, especially where there is the potential for monetizing the podcast at some point down the road. What if it become popular? What if a second season is to be made?  What if (GASP!) a producer wanted to option it for a television series? Who owns the rights to it? These are things that should be addressed prior to it going into production lest there are any quarrels raised later.

Iím sure there are plenty of other questions but thatís all I have for now.

Gary


1. I have looked for a template, but frankly have been unable to find a suitable one. If anyone else discovers one, then let us know.

However, I think it's safe to say that formatting it like a film script will be fine, just remembering that everything to be read out should be formatted as dialogue. Then everything outside of dialogue must necessarily be a description of some sound or other, whatever the description is such as:

INT. LITTLE PIGS BEDROOM - NIGHT


NARRATOR
The three little pigs were bouncing on their beds.


Sound of beds creaking.

FIRST LITTLE PIG
Do you think if we bounced high enough, we could bounce all the way to the Moon?

Bang!

SECOND LITTLE PIG
Well, maybe if there wasn't a ceiling.



It occurs to me that someone might also want to give some information such as:

Jack and Jill run quickly down the street...to establish we need footsteps and that the actors are out of breath. So just stick that outside of dialogue and it should all be obvious what's meant. I don't think it would need to get any more complicated than that. May as well retain scene headings to inform sound design.

If there are better suggestions, let us all know.



2. We're going to discuss and establish the overall story lines, both of the episodes and the whole season before we start. We'll also develop ideas for characters and their arcs together and arrange them into the story before we begin.

There will be three or four strands.

World Events, which can be relayed by radio, internet or hearsay. Including things that aren't true.

Local Events. What's happening in the immediate area.

Relatively local events. What's happening in nearby areas which might effect our characters. Like in nearby cities etc

Psychological states...how people are coping with what's going on. As the story progresses people will start acting more strangely, aggressively, manically etc so we'll know the general attitudes of the surrounding cast.

Once we've got an idea of everything that's happening, it should be fairly easy to plot how our characters are involved in those events.

So we'll have a reasonable structure. We'll know what happens when and to whom and what happens afterwards, so the writers can take it from there.


3. Once things are written we'll all look over the work and make suggestions. I'll reserve the right to make a final edit just to make sure everything feels consistent. And I'll make any final decision in case of some dispute, but I'll be heavily swayed by the majority opinion.


4. OK. I'll dig out a release form.

I'm definitely hoping to do more than one season,if we make a go of it. I reckon three altogether would be the sweet spot. I'll be spending money on actors, the recording studio, sound effects and marketing. The bulk of time will be spent editing the sound files I imagine. I'd want to recover some of that money if money eventually found it's way in, ideally. I reckon it's probably easier if the copyright stays with me, and then we separately apportion any proceedings from a sale between us. I'm open to suggestions on what you think is fair.

One of the things others have done with these things is have a Kickstarter campaign after the first season to get money to make the next. Somethign to look at, but we'd all probably need to market it pretty hard to make that a reality.
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Quoted from FrankM
Is this going to take-your-turns writing episode by episode, or are you planning something more of a group effort on each one?

If it's the first I might have to bow out because I can't write suspense to save my life.

If it's the second, I can dive into the more technical stuff (e.g., how radar, sonar, lidar, flir, etc. deal with fog).



We'll organise it first, then see how the card lie, I think (Is that the expression?). It could be either, or both.

I don't personally feel that what you mentioned is a problem. Maybe there's a scene that's more drama that you could write, or intense action or philosophical musings or whatever.  Plus, I'm of the opinion that we'll be able to add things like suspense beats or whatever else is needed to each other's work as we read it, then edit it.

Some brave souls will need to get some pages down, or there isn't anything to work with. So there will have to be some people willing to write scenes, but there will be other bits and pieces to work on.
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Quoted from Matthew Taylor


Just the structure of the challenge - what exactly I will have to do.

As in, will each writer be responsible for a single episode? or are a few writers assigned to collab on an individual episode? are we all just aiming to collab on the first episode with future episodes coming in future challenges?

Can't commit just yet when I'm not sure how much I will need to contribute lol


It partly depends on how many people there are, but I was imagining that there would be a central story in each episode, involving the main character/s and that central story would probably be written by one person.
But then there would be other things in each episode...maybe News Reports that everyone eagerly listens to. Maybe one individual just wants to write those, so they write all of them, then they're spliced into each episode, or I have an idea for a local radio host who gives out messages of hope and encouragement, but starts to slowly go mad on air over time...so maybe someone wants to write that whole arc, then it's later spliced in. Maybe Police Statements. Maybe a Scientist recording his findings.

Ultimately some brave souls need to get some pages down so there's a story, whether it's alone or in a team. But there will be pieces of things, I imagine, that others can write if they don't have much time.
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Quoted from Heretic
This is a brilliant idea for a challenge, Rick.

I have the same questions as Gary, above, especially re: contracts/ownership.

On logistics: I feel like this is unlikely to work without a showrunner (which I'm assuming would be Rick). Having a pilot episode, or half, or whatever, to read before we all sit down to actual writing would really help establish a tone for the show and a style for the writing, which I think would be necessary to keep the feel and the characters consistent. It seems to me this would work best with a traditional writer's room approach, ie. that we are all trying to match the showrunner's established voice.


In terms of contracts/copyright, see my answer to Gary and let me know what you think is fair.

My feeling was that if I wrote a whole episode for people to follow it would have become too much like an assignment and less of a shared experience.

However, there is clearly a lot of sense in what you are saying.

Perhaps what we'll do is put the first episode together over the course of the first week, after we've worked out where it's all going. So we'll have a template for format, structure, tone etc.
Do you think that's workable?
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Quoted from Mr. Blonde
I think I get what you're going for, Rick, and this sounds like a good bit of fun. A couple notes/questions I feel may be important to ask:

You mentioned the idea of us (the participants, as well as yourself) plotting out the big events that made the world how it is.

You said the world is already covered in fog. How long before?
Do the stories take place chronologically, or is this like World War Z (on the smaller scale you've described) where we get individual stories of alternating time periods?
Did anything else change about the world, besides the fog?
Is there any form of communication (radio, TV, internet)?

I have a story I would really like to tell for this and I think you will enjoy it quite a little bit. Just say the word. =)



1. Do you mean from the point the story starts?
2. Due to the logistical complexity of it all, I would probably favour chronological events. But it's definitely a discussion worth having. Were you thinking of having statements relating past events?
3. I don't think so. But the characters and the audience don't know that.
4. Yes. I believe everything would still be working. At least until something happened to make it not working.

Feel free to make any suggestions.
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Quoted from Scar Tissue Films
1. Do you mean from the point the story starts?
2. Due to the logistical complexity of it all, I would probably favour chronological events. But it's definitely a discussion worth having. Were you thinking of having statements relating past events?
3. I don't think so. But the characters and the audience don't know that.
4. Yes. I believe everything would still be working. At least until something happened to make it not working.

Feel free to make any suggestions.


1. From whenever. If you want to run it chronologically, when the first story happens, how long before that did the fog arrive? This will determine how people react to it.
2. Writing chronologically is perfectly fine by me. My honest suggestion to you would actually be to write them out-of-order because then, you wouldn't have to figure out the entire story before you begin writing the first one. This is a bit of advice I learned from the trauma of writing Christmas Story. Lol.
3. Even if the answer isn't known or discussed, know the answer. Whatever it is is cool, so long as it's definitive.
4. Sounds good.


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I think the idea scenario is for us to have a storyline in place, at least for the first two or three episodes.  Makes it easier for people then to write if they know they need to color somewhat inside the lines, but with the flexibility to experiment with something if they think it will work and can advocate it to the rest of the group. Then after we finish the first three scripts and see how the stories are developing, continue with the next set of storylines for three more episodes.  The point being is that if you try to Plan too far down the road, with a bunch of people trying to all contribute in various capacities, it gets to be a bit of a jumble.

At 5000 words and roughly 200 words per page (your mileage my vary) youíre talking about anywhere from 25 to 30 pages per episode. So maybe you break it up to 3 writers per episode so the writers arenít overwhelmed and the rest of us can then edit and pick apart the scripts.

ALSO VERY IMPORTANT:  As weíre working on each episode, make sure each episode has its own separate thread on the board so we can easily keep track of things like edit changes, comments, and so on.

I donít mind building an excel spreadsheet that keeps track of everyone participating, what the assignments are for each episode, deadlines, and so on.

Gary


My web site and scripts can be found here:

Gary's web site
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@JeStaats, Heretic and Mr. Blonde


Could you expand on the World War Z thing?

Are you meaning the characters are relating a past event to someone like in World War Z?

Or do you mean it's like a series of thought processes from different characters in the present?

Or something else?
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Quoted from Nomad
A few thoughts:

  • There would have to be a trip to Beetham Tower.  Or maybe the story starts in Beetham tower so we already know that the fog is at least 169 meters thick.  The sun sets over Liverpool as an iridescent mist swallows the city.  The residents wake to find a thick fog blocking all light, turning day into night.  Someone's alarm goes off to wake them for work, but it's still "night" since no light can penetrate the fog, at least at this time in the story.  They open their curtains and a milky fog lumbers on the other side of the glass.
  • Send up a drone to see how thick the fog is.  It never comes back.  It catches a glimpse of something in the air that destroys it.
  • Ben Nevis would be another destination to see if there was a way to get above the fog.
  • I would suggest that all air vehicles (planes, helicopters...) are destroyed and come crashing back down in a flaming heap.  Maybe in the future there could be someone who shows up in a helicopter.  Mystery! Why didn't he die in a flaming heap?
  • Hydroponics would be a way to grow food if the sun couldn't penetrate the fog to keep plants alive.
  • There is 1 nuclear power plant in the area, Heysham. As long as it was operating then there would be electricity in the area. Once it goes offline, then we move on to the next chapter.
  • There will be the good, the bad, and the ugly. Good people want to survive and hold on to their humanity. The bad people want to survive and don't care about their humanity. They will survive by any means necessary. The ugly don't care about surviving. They're going to do what they want, take what they want, hurt who they want, and devolve to the most basic of desires. Think 'necrophiliac cannibals'. Who is who? Every time people meet, this is the question they're going to have to ask and find out.
  • HAM radio operators will come in to play somewhere along the way. There has to be some sort of communication at distance.


This is my 2 cents. Or maybe it's 8 cents.

Either way, I'll wait to see what you want to do before I march in any particular direction.


Just to note your contribution. Some very interesting thoughts.

I was not imagining there would anything in the Fog, but your little Drone set piece gives food for thought...
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Quoted from Scar Tissue Films
@JeStaats, Heretic and Mr. Blonde


Could you expand on the World War Z thing?

Are you meaning the characters are relating a past event to someone like in World War Z?

Or do you mean it's like a series of thought processes from different characters in the present?

Or something else?


The idea of multiple storylines over a period of time. For example, the book had stories ranging over 10 years from about 60 perspectives. From came from right after the event, some were years later, but all were related.


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Quoted from Scar Tissue Films

I was not imagining there would anything in the Fog...


I wasn't imagining that there wouldn't be anything in the fog, but I guess there doesn't have to be.  

In fact if there isn't anything in the fog, and it's just fog, then that's where some hysteria could set in and people see things in the fog that aren't there. It'll drive some people mad that there's a lot of fog for no reason.

I hear people screaming at the fog now.


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Quoted from hawkeye
I think the idea scenario is for us to have a storyline in place, at least for the first two or three episodes.  Makes it easier for people then to write if they know they need to color somewhat inside the lines, but with the flexibility to experiment with something if they think it will work and can advocate it to the rest of the group. Then after we finish the first three scripts and see how the stories are developing, continue with the next set of storylines for three more episodes.  The point being is that if you try to Plan too far down the road, with a bunch of people trying to all contribute in various capacities, it gets to be a bit of a jumble.

At 5000 words and roughly 200 words per page (your mileage my vary) youíre talking about anywhere from 25 to 30 pages per episode. So maybe you break it up to 3 writers per episode so the writers arenít overwhelmed and the rest of us can then edit and pick apart the scripts.

ALSO VERY IMPORTANT:  As weíre working on each episode, make sure each episode has its own separate thread on the board so we can easily keep track of things like edit changes, comments, and so on.

I donít mind building an excel spreadsheet that keeps track of everyone participating, what the assignments are for each episode, deadlines, and so on.

Gary



Noted.

The spreadsheet sounds like a good idea.
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Quoted from Nomad
I wasn't imagining that there wouldn't be anything in the fog, but I guess there doesn't have to be.  

In fact if there isn't anything in the fog, and it's just fog, then that's where some hysteria could set in and people see things in the fog that aren't there. It'll drive some people mad that there's a lot of fog for no reason.

I hear people screaming at the fog now.


I think it's honestly creepier without. Remember the Twilight Zone episode "I Am the Night -- Color Me Black"? They sort of explain it, but ultimately, it's just pitch black all the time. Having nothing in the darkness allows for you to believe there could be anything in it. Even when there aren't.


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Quoted from Nomad


I wasn't imagining that there wouldn't be anything in the fog, but I guess there doesn't have to be.  

In fact if there isn't anything in the fog, and it's just fog, then that's where some hysteria could set in and people see things in the fog that aren't there. It'll drive some people mad that there's a lot of fog for no reason.


I hear people screaming at the fog now.


Yes, this was the way I was imagining it.

A kind of collective hysteria brought on by seeing things swirling in the fog.

Hearing things and imaginations running wild.

Rumours and hearsay causing paranoia.

A kind of mania brought on by the sensory deprivation of the endless fog.


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OK. I think I'll start constructing the chronology.


Should we do it here, or on a separate thread  as a kind of reference?
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Quoted from Mr. Blonde


I think it's honestly creepier without. Remember the Twilight Zone episode "I Am the Night -- Color Me Black"? They sort of explain it, but ultimately, it's just pitch black all the time. Having nothing in the darkness allows for you to believe there could be anything in it. Even when there aren't.


Agreed. The mind can create far worse horrors than real life.

I do like the idea of people thinking they see something in the fog.

Again though, I'm just brainstorming.

I'll help out with whatever I can in whatever direction Scar Tissue Films chooses to go.


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Going the with good, bad, and ugly mentioned earlier, one of the bits of infrastructure that out to be relatively robust is rail transport. Once things get to the point where most driving is unsafe, trains can still do their thing (splattering the occasional deer in the process).

At least until the Bad figure derailing a train could set up their group for life, then everyone else suffers. Can be the nexus of an episode, but leaves a permanent change in the world... rail security becomes a major issue sucking resources from elsewhere. (Historically, a couple successful Union sabotage teams diverted a disproportionate amount of Confederate manpower).


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Quoted from Scar Tissue Films
OK. I think I'll start constructing the chronology.


Should we do it here, or on a separate thread  as a kind of reference?


Separate thread definitely.


My web site and scripts can be found here:

Gary's web site
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Two things, there was an episode in the first season of ďThe CrownĒ of the actual fog that blanketed London for four days in December 1952.  You can watch that to see how that was handled. Also it might raise the question: would it be more terrifying if this happened in the past where technology wasnít so advanced, or in the future where advanced technology is rendered obsolete?

Also, every time I think about this fog I think about the ďsmoke monsterĒ from ďLostĒ.  Does the fog have any sort of anthropomorphic capabilities? Or is the fog just a fog?


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Is there definitely NOTHING in the fog? I think it'd be better to leave that unanswered. Yeah, these people are probably crazy and just seeing stuff... But maybe, just maybe, there is something there.


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Mr. Blonde
Posted: August 23rd, 2019, 3:50pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Zack
Is there definitely NOTHING in the fog? I think it'd be better to leave that unanswered. Yeah, these people are probably crazy and just seeing stuff... But maybe, just maybe, there is something there.


That's why you don't say, definitively. Because there always could be.


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MarkItZero
Posted: August 23rd, 2019, 4:00pm Report to Moderator
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Had a chance to listen for a few minutes to one of these podcasts (Homecoming) and was surprised how close it is to a regular tv show. Starts with two people talking in a therapist office, then goes to a coffee shop, then a phone conversation. They've got ambient noise and other things to clue you in to where you are.

Wouldn't it be easier to focus on one family going through these events? Or a very small community of people. They're holed up in their home, everyone is terrified, not sure it's safe to venture out. We could thread it all together with scenes of the family arguing/planning, radio reports, characters reading diary entries aloud, conversations with increasingly unhinged neighbors, etc.

Not saying a chronicle of the whole world's reaction with lots of different storylines (World War Z) wouldn't work, it just might get unfocused, especially in a collaborative effort.


That rug really tied the room together.
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Mr. Blonde
Posted: August 23rd, 2019, 4:18pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from MarkItZero
Wouldn't it be easier to focus on one family going through these events? Or a very small community of people. They're holed up in their home, everyone is terrified, not sure it's safe to venture out. We could thread it all together with scenes of the family arguing/planning, radio reports, characters reading diary entries aloud, conversations with increasingly unhinged neighbors, etc.

Not saying a chronicle of the whole world's reaction with lots of different storylines (World War Z) wouldn't work, it just might get unfocused, especially in a collaborative effort.


Doing both is certainly doable. 30 minutes is a lot of time. You could spend several segments with the same group of people, even time-jumping with them, if you wanted, in one segment. More than that, if people enjoy it, tell even more of their story. Lots of possibilities, before anything is made concrete.


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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: August 23rd, 2019, 4:22pm Report to Moderator
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Yes, I think it should be left unanswered and mysterious.

We don't show anything that reveals definitively that there IS something in the fog, but there's no way to prove that there isn't, either.


In this day and age there are still Witches, Druids, people trying to raise demons in rituals. There are a huge number of people who believe in ghosts, poltergeists, vampires even.

People who try to talk to the dead, or believe they can talk to the dead.

People see patterns in things, believe in astrology, Ouija boards etc

There are then numerous people with recognised conditions whose perceptions are altered. Who hear things, hallucinate etc

The point being that if this were to happen, large numbers of people would see things in the fog, they'd come to believe there were spirits in the fog, the fog was alive etc and convince others of it.

As an example, a man can be going silently crazy from being stuck in the fog. He's sitting watching the swirling mist, he starts to believe he can see some special pattern, some special message just for him. Then a stag walks out from the fog and stands looking at him.

To his mind the stag is a Spirit animal, anointing him.

From a rational point of view, it's just a stag walking in the fog. But from his perspective it's something profound and supernatural.
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Dustin
Posted: August 23rd, 2019, 4:47pm Report to Moderator
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Too many cooks here for my liking.

I suggest that we split into smaller groups and tackle certain charcaters' experiences within this fog world separately.

Rather than concentrating on one survivor, we are then free to explore different groups. Not only that, but the writing will be kept fresh as different writers will have written different episodes. Later, we can figure out how to help the survivors converge toward a single aim.


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Warren
Posted: August 23rd, 2019, 4:54pm Report to Moderator
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Wow, this is very ambitious, but not really my cup of tea. I'm going to sit this one out.

I'll be watching with interest from the sidelines and I'll try to read as much as I can.

Good luck to all who take part.


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PKCardinal
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And, of course, people being who they are... there would be MANY people using the fog for their gain. What does that look like? For criminals, it's cover. One recent study in NY reduced crime  by over 40% in a neighborhood just by installing lights. No more cover of darkness.

So, how much more effective is this fog in covering an escape from any nefarious activity? Much more than even darkness. No lights can penetrate this cover. So, crime soars. And, since there are fewer witnesses (nobody to see what's happening on the corner down the block), there's more mystery around those crimes. Is it the fog that's killing people? (No, but, how can we be sure?) What if a mass murderer is strangling victims, but nobody ever sees him doing it? Can the fog choke you out? Some people would think so. How would they react? Do they become "survivalists" never leaving their bunkers? Would communities of people gather in large buildings or even caves, with only the bravest among them to venture out for supplies?

And, who else would seek to benefit? Certainly there'd be con men selling glasses that let you see through the fog... just $19.99. Could we maybe have a con man that continually looks to capitalize on the weak? Or, do we have someone weak who constantly falls for the cons?

Or, perhaps one of our main characters is a detective or a cop. He'd be in the middle of all sorts of weird cases.

Might also be interesting if one of the characters is a preacher/religious sort. He/she could be a conduit for exploring religious themes.

Oh, and we should brainstorm what types of businesses might spring up in a world like this, because you know people would be looking for legitimate opportunities, too.

Would someone set up a rope tour of an area for tourism? "Just hook your carabiner to this rope and enjoy the tour!"

(The rope idea could be used in other ways, btw. A small town might set up a series of ropes that guide you from one area to another. Blue takes you to the tavern. Red to the courthouse. Green to the market, etc. etc.)

(Just throwing spaghetti at the wall here.)


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MarkItZero
Posted: August 23rd, 2019, 5:14pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Mr. Blonde


Doing both is certainly doable. 30 minutes is a lot of time. You could spend several segments with the same group of people, even time-jumping with them, if you wanted, in one segment. More than that, if people enjoy it, tell even more of their story. Lots of possibilities, before anything is made concrete.


Yeah, not a bad idea what Dustin said about everyone picking their own survival group to write. Long as there's an agreed upon timeline of events we can find a way to put it all together in the end, hopefully.


That rug really tied the room together.
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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: August 23rd, 2019, 5:41pm Report to Moderator
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I'll be heading to bed shortly.


It's been a great response! The world is already feeling like its taking shape.


For those finding the thread, or just coming to the thread, I reckon it's best to concentrate on getting an agreed time line together.

After that we can work out the direction the story will take, and whether we want to split into groups.
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FrankM
Posted: August 23rd, 2019, 6:28pm Report to Moderator
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One thing that needs to be hashed out is satellites. They're obviously above the Fog, but they may become useless if the Fog is radar-opaque or radio-opaque. The most obvious immediate impact would be GPS, but it affects a lot of other back-haul communications that make world a single place.


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JEStaats
Posted: August 23rd, 2019, 6:42pm Report to Moderator
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I'm going to throw out a couple thoughts here:
- In regards to the WWZ premise: this would allow individual shorts based upon agreed conditions surrounding the time/place/attributes of the fog/mist and the general global response;
- I think the fog/mist needs to have some mysterious quality other than a lasting fog/mist. I like the thought that there are no creatures but what if the fog/mist had, for example, a phosphorescent quality to it like algae in water? Movement through the fog/mist lights it up temporarily so you wouldn't easily sneak around in it. With this condition, you could only see silhouettes of whatever is approaching and people are now known by their shape. It could be used by people wearing fearsome disguises too (e.g. horns or carrying claymore swords...).
- I'm all in but this process needs refining. I go away for a moment and 20 long comments are posted.  
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JEStaats
Posted: August 23rd, 2019, 6:43pm Report to Moderator
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Fog/Mist = Mog? Can't call it fist!
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LC
Posted: August 23rd, 2019, 7:06pm Report to Moderator
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Question Rick, (for later, cause you're no doubt in bed):

Is this quoted text an excerpt from an established written work, or did you write it?

It began with a certain vagueness. A mist, a 'shimmer' around things that made them seem unreal. Romantic, mystical even; Adding a softness to the edges of life that didn't otherwise exist.

But then it grew thicker.

The sun disappeared from the sky. The curling tendrils of cloud and mist swallowed the streets, the buildings and the people. The entire world became a vague, shifting, intangible grey.

Fear set in, then panic, depression, then mania.

The roads became graveyards of burned out, skeletal wreckages. Planes lay silent on the runway.

Trade ground to a halt. Food production suffered. Food riots began. Canned food became a priceless commodity and people were willing to do anything, and everything to get it.

With the mist came the return of superstition. People reported hearing strange noises, or things moving in the mist, but no-one knew for sure.

Governments talked, splintered, but did...could do...nothing.

Scientists spoke of climate change, but their attempts to solve the problem failed, catastrophically.

The religious claimed it was a Divine Judgement. Such ideas no longer seemed quite so silly.

Cults formed as people flocked to those who claimed to know the truth, or merely provided the promise of food.

Hope came and went...

...But the Fog remained


A narrative opening like this might be a good idea.


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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: August 24th, 2019, 1:31am Report to Moderator
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I wrote it, to set the tone.
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LC
Posted: August 24th, 2019, 1:35am Report to Moderator
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Very nice, Rick.  
It certainly does that.


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Dustin
Posted: August 24th, 2019, 3:01am Report to Moderator
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I work best on my own or with another writer. Perhaps groups of two or three would be best? We could then switch our drafts for others to read and review.

I also feel, that for many of the writers here, writing for sound only is going to be a learning curve. You need to be really good at writing dialogue... telling a story through exposition without it sounding like exposition. You need to become very 'sound' aware. I'd actually suggest that writing for sound only is more difficult than writing visuals.

How many writers here are confident they can pull this off if they worked alone?


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stephen
Posted: August 24th, 2019, 4:04am Report to Moderator
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Hello everyone. I signed up recently and was looking forward to a One Week Challenge so this format was a surprise. Would love to contribute in any way if I can.

For the script format, we can use the radio play format used in War of the Worlds.

Also Rick should we define what the fog is or is not first and how you see this story ending?
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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: August 24th, 2019, 4:38am Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Dustin
I work best on my own or with another writer. Perhaps groups of two or three would be best? We could then switch our drafts for others to read and review.

I also feel, that for many of the writers here, writing for sound only is going to be a learning curve. You need to be really good at writing dialogue... telling a story through exposition without it sounding like exposition. You need to become very 'sound' aware. I'd actually suggest that writing for sound only is more difficult than writing visuals.

How many writers here are confident they can pull this off if they worked alone?



I will post an update later in order to refine and structure everything more clearly.

But basically the steps will be:

Establish the definitive time line, so we'll have a solid framework for everyone's work to for into.

A lead discussion about characters, storylines etc including whether we're focusing on a small contained story, or something with a wider spread. (I think the best way would be to start off with one main character or family who we will follow throughout, use them as a vehicle to introduce us to the local community, then once they're established, they can lead us off into the wider world, where anything can happen, but at some point those side stories will collide with the central story) .

Then we can see who is going to partake and how they want to do it.

In terms of the writing.. It'll be a challenge for sure. Ultimately it will be a case of writing is rewriting and all that. People do the best they can, then we review, make suggestions, edit it. At some point I can even get people to record it so we can listen to it and see what's unclear.
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LC
Posted: August 24th, 2019, 4:38am Report to Moderator
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Quoted from stephen
Hello everyone. I signed up recently and was looking forward to a One Week Challenge so this format was a surprise. Would love to contribute in any way if I can.

For the script format, we can use the radio play format used in War of the Worlds.

Also Rick should we define what the fog is or is not first and how you see this story ending?




Welcome, Stephen! Yes, agreed that this is a bit outside the usual OWC box.

A couple of links for you to help navigate the site etc.

https://www.simplyscripts.net/cgi-bin/Blah/Blah.pl?m-1124159895/s-0/
https://www.simplyscripts.net/cgi-bin/Blah/Blah.pl?b-screenwrite/

You can also introduce yourself, if you feel so inclined:

https://www.simplyscripts.net/cgi-bin/Blah/Blah.pl?b-knowyou/


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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: August 24th, 2019, 5:40am Report to Moderator
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Quoted from PKCardinal
And, of course, people being who they are... there would be MANY people using the fog for their gain. What does that look like? For criminals, it's cover. One recent study in NY reduced crime  by over 40% in a neighborhood just by installing lights. No more cover of darkness.

So, how much more effective is this fog in covering an escape from any nefarious activity? Much more than even darkness. No lights can penetrate this cover. So, crime soars. And, since there are fewer witnesses (nobody to see what's happening on the corner down the block), there's more mystery around those crimes. Is it the fog that's killing people? (No, but, how can we be sure?) What if a mass murderer is strangling victims, but nobody ever sees him doing it? Can the fog choke you out? Some people would think so. How would they react? Do they become "survivalists" never leaving their bunkers? Would communities of people gather in large buildings or even caves, with only the bravest among them to venture out for supplies?

And, who else would seek to benefit? Certainly there'd be con men selling glasses that let you see through the fog... just $19.99. Could we maybe have a con man that continually looks to capitalize on the weak? Or, do we have someone weak who constantly falls for the cons?

Or, perhaps one of our main characters is a detective or a cop. He'd be in the middle of all sorts of weird cases.

Might also be interesting if one of the characters is a preacher/religious sort. He/she could be a conduit for exploring religious themes.

Oh, and we should brainstorm what types of businesses might spring up in a world like this, because you know people would be looking for legitimate opportunities, too.

Would someone set up a rope tour of an area for tourism? "Just hook your carabiner to this rope and enjoy the tour!"

(The rope idea could be used in other ways, btw. A small town might set up a series of ropes that guide you from one area to another. Blue takes you to the tavern. Red to the courthouse. Green to the market, etc. etc.)

(Just throwing spaghetti at the wall here.)


All good ideas, PK and all are noted.

The murderer angle might be particularly useful to create fear and a sense something terrible is in the fog.

I had a similar idea about ropes, though I imagined people using Christmas style rope lights, linking places.

A nice beat could be that someone moves one at some point.. Leading an unsuspecting victim somewhere...
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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: August 24th, 2019, 5:50am Report to Moderator
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Quoted from MarkItZero
Had a chance to listen for a few minutes to one of these podcasts (Homecoming) and was surprised how close it is to a regular tv show. Starts with two people talking in a therapist office, then goes to a coffee shop, then a phone conversation. They've got ambient noise and other things to clue you in to where you are.

Wouldn't it be easier to focus on one family going through these events? Or a very small community of people. They're holed up in their home, everyone is terrified, not sure it's safe to venture out. We could thread it all together with scenes of the family arguing/planning, radio reports, characters reading diary entries aloud, conversations with increasingly unhinged neighbors, etc.

Not saying a chronicle of the whole world's reaction with lots of different storylines (World War Z) wouldn't work, it just might get unfocused, especially in a collaborative effort.


Those were my initial thoughts, also.

It's something we'll have to discuss more fully later.
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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: August 24th, 2019, 5:59am Report to Moderator
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Quoted from stephen
Hello everyone. I signed up recently and was looking forward to a One Week Challenge so this format was a surprise. Would love to contribute in any way if I can.

For the script format, we can use the radio play format used in War of the Worlds.

Also Rick should we define what the fog is or is not first and how you see this story ending?


Welcome aboard, Stephen.

The template looks fine. Good work.

We'll start getting into story details later, but there will no doubt be something like an official Government scientist who tells us what it roughly is, though he can't be certain, but after that people will start to get their own ideas.

I imagined this would ultimately be three seasons. It will end on a hopeful note for humanity.

The first season that eye going to try to make here, will almost certainly end in a very dramatic reveal, or a major cliffhanger where the main characters lives are threatened.
Possibly an event that will force them out of their area into the wider world for the next season. That's what I'm thinking at the moment, anyway.
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stephen
Posted: August 24th, 2019, 11:58am Report to Moderator
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Great. What is your expectation for these two weeks? Series bible and pilot finished? Or outlines done for all ten episodes?

Also hawkeye asked this on the chronology thread: Is the fog a metaphor for anything? Since this takes place in the UK, I can't help but think about Brexit and what lead up to that. Is this the inspiration for this story?
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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: August 24th, 2019, 12:12pm Report to Moderator
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It might be a bit crazy, but the idea is to try and get the bulk of a Ten Episode Season done!

Fog as Metaphor:

Something like a Fog of Untruth. An exterior representation of the 'clouds' in our own minds. The darkness, the Shadow the wrong ideas we have, the beliefs we have that are at odds with reality, but are what we live by.

A big, foggy cloud that we can't see through, but reveals the truth about ourselves.


Definitely nothing to do with Brexit, but Politics in general is unavoidably in there along with everything else.
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