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Old July 1st, 2009 (8:08 PM).
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So, um, hey.
Most of you probably don't remember my fanfic that I posted about a year ago. That is quite understandable. It went by the name Down the Beaten Path, for only God knows why. Probably because I wrote chapter one at two o'clock in the morning and posted it without thinking things through, thus having to resort to a crappy title that sounds semi-deep, but actually isn't. Now, Down the Beaten Path, or DPB, was my first fanfic. This provides a reason as to why it is now dead and forgotten. Most first fanfics will probably fail (I am not 100% sure on this, but from what I've heard this is true). So, not only was DPB horribly planned out (rather, just not planned out), but it was also my first attempt at writing. It started out just fine, and I got some helpful and pleasant reviews. Of course, as most things I do go, the quality of said fanfic fell faster than steam doesn't. As things got worse, and I realized how naive I had been to think I could make DPB up as I went along, I hid in a corner and waited for it to die all alone, with not even it's author to comfort it on the death bed. However, also unlike most first fanfics (from what I have heard) I was quite fond of the story and where it was going until I began pulling chapters out of my rear. That is why I plan to rewrite what little I had done of DBP, but now with such new concepts as planning and taking my time. So, now I'm going to start with getting the skeleton of this new fanfic-to-be out of my brain, and onto this here thread to get some response, be it good or bad.

Planned Title: Down the Beaten Path V2 Chased by Circumstance
This title can hardly be called better than that which is crossed out, but it is a start. A large portion of this fanfic involves running away or being in pursuit, and I'm not sure why circumstance is there. It sounded good when I wrote it >_<

Genre: Errrm... Adventure? I don't really know much about genres, save the fact that they exist. The main story is taking place in Kanto, and is somewhat an adventure where things are uncovered and forgotten.

The Actual Story: Ah, here comes the hard part. This story *surprise* is greatly affected by legendary pokemon. No, the main character is not The Chosen One, nor does he come into much contact with them, and he definately does not befriend one. The legendaries in question are the three elemental birds, and how the came to be, and what they really think about us (I am referring to humans, so sorry for any alien readers there, you're safe from their wrath). Team Rocket also rears it's ugly head in my story, playing a central part. They find a way to allow the birds to leave their domain, and have free reign over Kanto. This time, it's not the legendaries being used by the Rockets, so don't worry about it being some "I have to save these poor pokemon from being ill treated by these nasty men in black outfits" story. In fact, it is the Rockets who end up being used by the bird's "leader" of sorts, who shall remain nameless. (This being a pokemon forum, I wouldn't be surprised if y'all knew who it was anyway)

Some People, Because Dialogue Is A Necessary Evil: For now, all I've got is the character that the story begins with, Shane. A resident of Celadon, he has wanted to journey across Kanto for a few years now, but only until recently has he been able to. Shane is eleven, and will be starting out with a rare pokemon that still isn't overused. Hint: Game Corner much? Although Shane's life is saved early on in the story, the events that follow because of said salvation are what lead to the plot being existent in an interesting manner. He will not be collecting gym badges on the way, but do expect some voluntary battles, and some involuntary ones as well.

So, what do you think? "TMI"? Not enough info? To boring? To cliche? Excellent? Has a chance? Gimme your thoughts.
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Old July 1st, 2009 (8:37 PM).
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Citrinin Citrinin is offline
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I think this story has real potential, provided you find a way to link Shane to the legendary plot in an interesting manner, and make sure Shane isn't a vapid, generic trainer. Good luck.
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Old July 5th, 2009 (8:01 AM).
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dark_giratina dark_giratina is offline
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I agree with Citrinin, it has great potential and will probably go far.You are right about most first fanfics failing ,but some dont *Cough Citrinins is awesome cough*
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Old July 5th, 2009 (8:22 AM). Edited July 6th, 2009 by Miz en Scène.
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Miz en Scène Miz en Scène is offline
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*Nodding while agreeing with Citrinin*

Yeah, sometimes if you post a chapter at like 2.00 in the morning you tend to come up with crappy titles. I remember my first fic, the censor warning on the title was all in uppercase so it looked kind of (pardon the 1337 speak) noobish.

On the subject matter of your fic however, I smell possible conflict in some way or another. You don't want your character to be too perfect do you? If this is an OT fic (generally linked with the adventure genre sometimes) be sure to avoid the cliches. Or maybe, if you're really good you could try using 'Reversal' it's something people do to get new ideas.

Eg. When TV and sitcoms were just taking off, comedy was the best. Usually, these sitcoms would center around one theme such as dysfunctional family or the like for comedic entertainment. But, one comedic genius decided to make a sitcom centered about 'nothing'. Yes that's right nothing. For all of you who enjoy the classics, such as myself, you would know I'm talking about Seinfeld, the brainchild of Jerry Seinfeld.

Wait, I'm rambling again. Sorry about that, but that technique usually helps come out with interesting ideas.

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Old July 5th, 2009 (10:59 PM).
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Shane doesn't have a Dratini, does he? Dratini is relatively common as far as starters go, but you can justify it easily, considering that his final evolution totally kicks ass and is therefore a better Pokemon to journey with than, say, Rattata. So that's not a problem.

About the story, I would say not enough info. I don't have any sense of how the plot is going to pan out. It's good that the legendaries are finally being given some credit and do not become the pawns of power-hungry humans. That gives me hope. On the other hand, if the answer to the question "What do the legendary birds really think of us?" is "Humans are basically worthless," then I have to say it's been done. You'll have to handle something like that very carefully to make it work.

You said that Shane doesn't come into much contact with the legendary birds...will he be a significant character? You could tell the story through him, using him as an observer for the important events in the story and letting the reader figure out what's been omitted.

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Old July 6th, 2009 (5:50 AM). Edited July 6th, 2009 by JX Valentine.
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Originally Posted by liveitout View Post
Shane doesn't have a Dratini, does he? Dratini is relatively common as far as starters go, but you can justify it easily, considering that his final evolution totally kicks ass and is therefore a better Pokemon to journey with than, say, Rattata.
This is actually why it's probably not a good idea to start out with a Dratini. (Incidentally, it's not really a common starter in fanfiction, as I can't name an OT story that has a trainer start with one -- and, yes, I've read a lot of OT story beginnings. Yes, I know a number of OT RPGs have Dratini as an option, but not all of them do. Likewise, OT fanfiction isn't exactly the same as OT RPGs.) First off, it's rare. Famously so. As in, in certain 'dex entries (RBY and LG, and DP calls it a "Mythical Pokémon," caps and all), it's mentioned that Dratini was a mythical Pokémon whose existence was even debatable before a colony of them was discovered.

Second, yes, its evolution is epically strong (literally), which means you'll be relying completely on its brute force to have the character win every battle.

Third, what's wrong with starting with a Rattata? A good author can ignore the common cry that it's weak (which, seriously, the Fangs alone are pretty decent on a Raticate, and have we really forgotten F.E.A.R?) and turn a supposed downfall into a major plus for the character. After all, if you see a Dragonite beating the crap out of entire teams at a tournament, for example, it's just not that surprising because Dragonite is normally thought to be able to hold its own. However, Raticate takes cleverness on the author's part -- a sort of creativity that allows the author to think outside the box. You just can't rely on brute strength to win if you're going to use a common or otherwise "weak" Pokémon like Raticate. You have to combine moves or use moves in new ways -- like having Raticate Quick Attack to behind the Dragonite, up the back, and to the wings, where the Raticate Crunches them off because they might be an Achilles' heel for that particular dragon. Not exactly the direct approach of "HYPER BEAM TO THE FACE." In fact, it might even be seen as low. Yet, at the same time, it's a bit more interesting because not only is it more complex than just your standard Kamehameha battle but also because there's a very real risk that this kind of thing would really screw up for the user. In other words, it's extremely unpredictable, and readers tend to like unpredictable. (Or, at least, that's what I've been consistently told by reviewers.)

Short of it is that just because it's stronger doesn't mean that it's a better choice for a starter. You're not trying to win the game, after all. You're trying to forge an interesting story, and to do that, you'll have to add as many obstacles as possible to force the characters to overcome in clever ways. One way to do that is to go for the Pokémon that isn't notoriously a powerhouse.

'Course, this all is a moot point because it's implied that the OP isn't asking about which starter to use. I will say, though, that the Rocket Game Corner offers several other interesting choices for Pokémon that either are rare or are called rare by the games, ranging from Porygon to Clefairy, and if he chooses something that isn't Eevee or Dratini, he's got some pretty flipping awesome choices left.

I have to say, though, that I agree that I'm wondering about how Shane will fit into this picture. I get the vibe that this is an OT story in which he goes off to investigate what's going on with the birds, only to find himself hitting one surprise plot after another ("Evil team is using the birds, so I must help stop them! ...Oh wait, no, they aren't! Oh noes!"), but on the other hand, it sounds as if Shane's taking more of a background role. As in, he doesn't even really encounter the legendaries themselves that often, and I wonder if that means his story's not going to cross with the other story that often either.

Other than that, the idea of a legendary group actually actively using humans for a sinister purpose is an interesting concept that could actually work if the one pulling the strings isn't stereotypically evil. (Lulz, psycho Mewtwo.) I'd just really think about how the human characters come into play in all of this.
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Old July 13th, 2009 (4:58 PM).
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Thanks for the feedback, guys. Now, let's dig up my old chapters so I can answer some of these kweshons. (Yeah, I can't even remember exactly how my old story went -_- )

Da Pogeyman: It seems that giving away the identity of Shane's first pokemon isn't going to ruin it or anything, seeing as it's one of the first things to be mentioned anyway. His first pokemon is a porygon, but don't expect it to stick around too long.

That One Guy: Shane gets involed with the story by accident, not from wanting to save teh worldz. So, yeah, it's more like what liveitout said, but not quite. After getting porygon, Shane is chased to Fushcia (boy I tell ya, that's a hard word for me to spell), pursues someone to Seafoam Islands, and is brought to Cinnabar by another character. So, pretty much, he's swept away from home pretty quickly and without a say in the matter. Up to that point in the story, the legendaries have been almost nonexistant. However, once Shane get's to Cinnabar ('nother thing I have to find out how to spell) he finds out some pretty important info about the rockets. Although Shane doesn't care at all (he just wants to get home) the rockets do care that he knows some stuff, so that's how he gets involved. He flees from Cinnabar, and arrives in Pallet. This is where Team Rocket starts making more frequent appearances, and the story gets a bit more hectic. So, he's not really the hero, but is still considered a threat to the "bad guys"

To The Back Of The Story: The backstory of why the birds need the rockets is that they are not allowed to leave their elemental "domain". However, the rockets find a way to let the birds come out of their secluded areas and into the major cities. They want to do this because during a time of chaos, they will be able to take control of the citizens through lies and by "protecting" them.

Errr, I think that explains ev'rything that was brought up...
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Old August 11th, 2009 (1:30 PM).
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Sunnybeam Sunnybeam is offline
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Ohyah, I remember that fic! I'd love to see it brought back as a rewrite~
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