All through January I hosted the RPG Blog Carnival, which was my third year hosting. This is always a lot of fun, and a great opportunity to connect with bloggers. Today is the last day of the Carnival. The draft of my final duty, the summary post, has already been written.
To compensate for the loss of the Carnival, I wanted to create another event to run on the blog. Thus FebShoMo was born.
The title is short for February Shorts Month. The project is for writers, storytellers and GMs, which equates to much the same thing. Do you have notebooks full of ideas just waiting for expansion? Lists of story elements, or kernels of ideas?
FebShoMo is a chance to develop these scribbled notes into outlines together. In this way, we will have a better idea about their worth. Are these ideas enough to carry a whole story? Perhaps they simply need to be woven into another plot, rather than bear the whole narrative burden themselves.
By the end of the month, we should have a collection of plot outlines ready to develop further. These could be the foundations for short stories, books or just a cool plot for your campaign. Hopefully outlines will inspire you to do more with the idea.
The challenge for the month is to develop one idea per day. I hope to turn every idea into a 300 word outline. The exact nature of the outline may vary with each idea. Character portraits, plot breakdowns or even a collection of telling phrases all qualify. The important point is to translate that brief idea into 300 words, or more.
One of the reasons I chose February was because it is a short month. However, the way the month neatly divides into four weeks also appeals. My FebShoMo will split into four parts, each generating seven outlines. This process will give me variety, allow me to test different methods of idea generation and hopefully produce a more varied range of outlines.
In FebShoMo I aim to explore several improvisational methods, as this relates closely to the way I run RPGs. I may as well try to be a better GM as well as a better writer through February. The current plan for the month is:
- Week 1 – Fairy Tales, using random cards from the Once Upon a Time card game
- Week 2 – Expanding ideas from my “What If . . .” list
- Week 3 – Science Fiction or Fantasy outlines, drawing from my Skuld cards of fantasy art
- Week 4 – Character portraits built from Rory’s Story Cubes dice
It would be great if you join me for FebShoMo. You are free to plan your weeks as you desire. I am interested in learning any new methods for generating random combinations of ideas, and seeing how they develop.
Please leave comments here linking to your contributions, or for any of the outlines I post on the blog.