Interactive Fiction? Why Bother?

With many things I am quite late to the game and far from being an early adopter. Interactive Fiction (or IF) is no different.

If you don’t know what IF is then here’s a good guide.

I have started to play with a popular IF (and even better is that it’s open-source) tool called Twine. My first ever story (The Mirror) was incredibly short and not very interactive but it got me thinking about how Twine is a great tool for writers in understanding their plots.

You may not want to write IF but if you want to make your writing more interesting or to understand how your scenes relate then you really should map out a story in Twine.

Twine Plot

Before you get worried I must stress that you don’t need to be techie or a programmer to do this.

Even with my very short story I quickly understood how Twine makes you look at every element of your writing. Could the story branch off here? Should this character do this or would another character be better for that? What if instead of throwing a ball, the character threw a rock? Or a grenade?

Do you see where I’m going here? Twine opens your eyes to possibilities that you might not have imagined before. Instead of writing and plotting in a boring linear style your one story idea becomes 100 different story ideas.

Even if you already have the end in sight, like I did with The Mirror, taking the reader on a winding road but to the same destination can’t be a bad thing.

What If?

Are you stuck for ideas and unable to move your plot forward?
Here are five random ‘What If?’ scenarios to get you thinking and take your story somewhere new.

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What if… the main character’s ex-lover dies.

What if… the Dalai Lama sleeps with – who?

What if… the main character’s uncle finds – who or what?

What if… the doctor attacks – who?

What if… the main character escapes – who or where?

Are these 5 not inspiring enough? Just refresh your browser and get 5 more.


 

I am still developing the What If randomizer so please let me have your feedback.

What works and what doesn’t?

What scenarios and characters would you like added?