Weekly Writing Challenge: Using Forms Creatively (Part 2 of 2)

Earlier this week, The Daily Post asked us to utilise the Forms options on our posts as part of the Weekly Writing Challenge. Split into 2 parts I hoped to be able to, firstly gather the required information needed, and then write up the 2nd phase of this challenge. The first part of this exercise can be found HERE, where I asked readers to choose 1 of 3 Genre ‘settings’ for a new ‘interactive’ piece of fiction that I will be writing on the blog.

The 3 options were:

  1. Realistic – (within the realms of possiblity and true to real life situations)
  2. Enhanced Reality – (think ‘True Blood’ for example, realistic setting with fantasy elements)
  3. SciFi/Fantasy – (completely open world with no limit to what is possible)

After selecting just 1 option, the reader was then asked to submit a comment, explaining why they made that choice. Obviously the majority of the responses explained it due to personal preference to what they like to read. Naturally. Although a few people took it from a different perspective and thought about me as the writer and how the decision could affect the way I produce the work.

One reader commented:

Why restrict yourself? SciFi/Fantasy allows you to be as imaginative and creative as you like, no boundaries. Creating a believable world in this genre will challenge you as a writer but the end product will be so much more worth it.

I have to say, I kind of agree with them to some respect. Before I began this task I was contemplating a realistic, true to life piece of fiction, where I could ground my characters within natural environments. I have found through my adult life that the majority of books I have read that drew me in emotionally where those that stayed true to ‘real life’ situations, for example: My Sister’s Keeper by Jodi Picoult. I will put my hands up and admit, that’s the only book I have ever read to make me cry. Maybe that’s what I wanted to emulate with my writing. It seemed others agreed with this style too.

Another comment read:

If it is going to be interactive I think realistic will work best. Supernatural and scifi dystopian fiction is so popular at the moment that you may get better input instead of subconscious repeat ideas of things just read or seen. (sic)

It really is interesting to see other readers point of view! We all assume we know what is best, and maybe for the majority of the content within our fiction that is true, but it goes to show that if we become a little bit more open-minded, and willing to listen to what people like or want, then surely this can only help and improve our writing. After all, are we not creating narratives for other people to enjoy as much as for our own pleasure?

This is why I wanted to make my online fiction partly interactive, because I realise that there are lots of ideas out there that I may just never come across without a little bit of help. It’s not cheating to ask for a bit of guidance, or an opinion if you truly believe that it will benefit the writing. I will be using ‘Custom Forms’ more in future to allow my work to evolve and also to get other followers and visitors involved, after all, that’s the essence of blogging isn’t it?

The final decision was undoubtedly down to me, I had to be comfortable with the genre of course, I couldn’t just go with the majority vote as though this was an election. That wasn’t the purpose of the experiment after all. It was to engage and interact, to challenge and question ideas. Although I have decided to choose the overall majority favourite Sci-Fi / Fantasy I have decided that I don’t necessarily have to go overboard with the ideas, and I guess that’s the beauty of it, I can decide how little or how much whilst not restricting or limiting myself.

Creativity is about freedom.

For those interested, I have provided the final tally of submitted ‘votes’ below, and I would  like to thank everyone involved for taking part. This really was a very interesting challenge / experiment!

  1. Realistic  –  4 votes
  2. Enhanced Reality  –  6 votes
  3. Sci-Fi/ Fantasy  – 9 votes

This post is in response to: http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/05/13/writing-challenge-forms/

and a follow-up to: https://mattsden101.wordpress.com/2013/05/13/weekly-writing-challenge-using-forms-creatively-part-1-of-2/

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