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Question about adding a non-sequential chapter

StarFleet Carl

I have a small chapter that's the Mod List I run so that people can see what I'm running. Since I'm at Chapter 49 in my main story, how do I add it not as a prequel but as a it's own thing? Or should I just add it as a single, stand-alone one-off as part of the whole universe? (It's only an 11K chapter, not very interesting except to all those who also play Skyrim and were wondering what mods I run.)

Ernest Bywater

@StarFleet Carl

There is a capability to have certain information type pages at the start of a story such as Table of Contents, Foreword, Cast List and possibly others. You can always include it and add it like a separate chapter to show right at the start. Using the instructions at:

https://storiesonline.net/h/57/how-to-show-toc-in-storys-index-cover-page

Except you change the name.

When I do this I upload it like a chapter of its own with an instruction in the Moderator Notes about what it is and where I want it. And then they put it there.

Crumbly Writer

For something like that, I'd typically put it at the end of the book. Since you can't do that for a continuing story, I'd add it as a 'new chapter', and then, when the story completes, delete it and repost it again so it shows up as an appendix. (I do this all the time with my character lists, so readers can identify new characters, but the information won't count on the 'chapter reads' details as the 'most read chapter'.

Just be sure, when you the chapter delete goes through before you submit the new one.

StarFleet Carl

@Crumbly Writer

For something like that, I'd typically put it at the end of the book.


That's probably what I'll do, then. Thanks to both of you for the assistance. I honestly didn't think that this story would turn into what it did when I first started writing it.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
awnlee jawking

@Crumbly Writer

For something like that, I'd typically put it at the end of the book.


Might it be worth asking Lazeez to consider a facility to pin a chapter of a multi-chapter story to the end? (Chapter 999999999?) That would be useful for cast lists too.

AJ

Ross at Play

@awnlee jawking

Chapter 999999999?

Be careful what you suggest in jest! Jack Spratt may be reading this. ;)

samuelmichaels

@StarFleet Carl

Was I the only person who misread is as "adding non-consequential chapter"?

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Ernest Bywater

@samuelmichaels

leet Carl

Was I the only person who misread is as "adding non-consequential chapter"?


yes

Crumbly Writer

@StarFleet Carl

I honestly didn't think that this story would turn into what it did when I first started writing it.

It's not uncommon for stories to take on a life of their own, and soon your characters are dragging you along, with little clue what'll happen next.

Replies:   Grant  StarFleet Carl
Crumbly Writer

@awnlee jawking

Might it be worth asking Lazeez to consider a facility to pin a chapter of a multi-chapter story to the end? (Chapter 999999999?) That would be useful for cast lists too.

Or footnotes (not that there's a huge list of SOL authors waiting with lengthy footnotes).

Grant

@Crumbly Writer

It's not uncommon for stories to take on a life of their own, and soon your characters are dragging you along, with little clue what'll happen next.

I can't remember what story it was, but the author's notes told of how it was meant to be the usual High School in love forever couple, but through a misunderstanding he gets the boot, then gets involved with a girl from the wrong side of the tracks and all sorts of sex with all sorts of people results, with him eventually ending back up with his high school sweet heart & living happily every after.
However as the story progresses, the girl from the wrong side of the tracks grew in to a whole different character, and they ended up staying together- the author just couldn't come up with any reasonable way for them breaking up because of they way both of the characters developed as the story progressed.

Replies:   Michael Loucks
Michael Loucks

@Grant

However as the story progresses, the girl from the wrong side of the tracks grew in to a whole different character, and they ended up staying together- the author just couldn't come up with any reasonable way for them breaking up because of they way both of the characters developed as the story progressed.


There are several characters like this in my series - intended to be brief encounters but they became a very different person once words starting hitting paper...

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
Crumbly Writer

@Michael Loucks

There are several characters like this in my series - intended to be brief encounters but they became a very different person once words starting hitting paper...

Your characters know your story better than you do. After all, they live in it. So when you attempt to force the story to bend in awkward directions, they'll rebel. It's best to listen to your characters, and let them drive. If something is wrong, they'll let you know, loud and clear!

Replies:   samuelmichaels
samuelmichaels

@Crumbly Writer

Your characters know your story better than you do. After all, they live in it. So when you attempt to force the story to bend in awkward directions, they'll rebel. It's best to listen to your characters, and let them drive. If something is wrong, they'll let you know, loud and clear!


Therein lies psychosis.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Ernest Bywater

@samuelmichaels

Therein lies psychosis.


Hey, I resemble both those remarks.

Crumbly Writer

This discussion (Grant's point about a story gone astray) reminds me of an online discussion (from a LinkedIn Author forum) where someone said a minor character was taking over her story, and wondered whether she should turn the entire story over to the new character who seemed stronger than the original.

I responded (as I often do) that first, she needed to identify what was holding the original character back, and resolve that issue first. I then went on and suggested, the best use for a break-out character like that, is to give them the room to establish themselves, and THEN constrain them. That allows you to create an entirely new spin off story, with a ready-made market of readers already interested and invested in the character. Hell, chances are, the spin-off just might be better (more popular) than the original, but changes topics midstream seems like you're stealing both characters' thunder.

Replies:   richardshagrin
richardshagrin

@Crumbly Writer

a minor character was taking over her story

What makes a character a "minor" character? Of course the obvious one is if he or she (or it?) is under the age of majority (currently 18 in many USA jurisdictions, used to be 21, Jewish practice was at puberty or 14 or whenever the family could afford a bar mitzvah). If a military story, characters at rank of O4 (Major) shouldn't be minor characters.

In the Lone Ranger is Tonto a minor character? His name means stupid, as I recall, so perhaps the author's intent was not to focus on his character. Hollywood has stars, co-stars, supporting actors and people who are on screen but have no speaking role (extras). Where do minor characters fit in that series of options? As an aside, John Wayne in his movies set in Texas was the only star, since Texas is the lone star state.

StarFleet Carl

@Crumbly Writer

It's not uncommon for stories to take on a life of their own, and soon your characters are dragging you along, with little clue what'll happen next.


Considering the minor detail that I'm writing a fan fiction of a video game where certain things are scripted out, that some things have gone off on their own like they have amaze me. I think that's one reason I don't plot many of my stories out in advance - I just have to keep good notes on what HAS happened so I can have it make sense later.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
Crumbly Writer

@StarFleet Carl

I think that's one reason I don't plot many of my stories out in advance - I just have to keep good notes on what HAS happened so I can have it make sense later.

I've never plotted things out either. However, I do have 'waypoints'. Specific tasks the story has to meet, however where they occur and what happens in between is completely up to the characters. As long as I reach the ending, and the entire story hasn't lost it's focus, I figure I'm on target.

@Richard
A 'minor character' is simply one who doesn't have a major role. You have the primary male and female lead (protagonist and antagonist, though they aren't the same). Main characters are those where the story wouldn't work without them (i.e. they couldn't be yanked without the story not working).

Secondary characters are characters who appear often, but who aren't 'essential' to the story, whereas minor characters are the multitude of 'non-essential' characters, where you could easily substitute virtually anyone else in their role (i.e. they could either be a 64-year-old man or a 17-year-old snot-nosed kid, their roles are simply there for the taking.

Anyone have any better definitions?

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Ernest Bywater

@Crumbly Writer

A 'minor character' is simply one who doesn't have a major role.


I thought a minor character was the funny guy who dug coal from the earth.

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