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How do you normally start/join a thread?


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This might be a useless thread, but I figure it might also be an interesting one. Who knows? Gets it off my mind, at least.

So, this has been on my mind for several days now; I realize i have a particular style to it, and other people have other styles, and I honestly think that only by comparing them and, to take a quote, "using good ideas wherever we find them", can we really improve our styles. Now, every site I can remember seeing, eventually, has an "open threads" board, for people who have people getting trouble getting people to join those threads. So, my thoughts are, how do people start threads?

I usually start out with a location description, so people are on the same page for what's going on around them. Am I in a forest, a field, a building, on a city street, what are some smells, is there wind, is there anything we can feel, what can we hear, are there other people around, what's the weather like, what time of day is it, that type of thing? I usually take a paragraph or two to get through that.

Then, after, I describe my character- which character I'm using, what they're wearing, how it might differ from the description or playby that I might be using, things like that. Next, i give a bit of backstory- what's happened between their last thread and this one, why are they where they currently are, if they've got any plans or goals at the moment.

Finally, I try and put in some "atmosphere" or "surrounding events" or whatever. I might have my character bump into or start talking to somebody I don't mention or do something else, leaving the responder to either be that person or a witness to it. Or I might have there be some sort of incident like somebody tripping over something nearby and embarrassing themselves, and my character is the witness. I like to try and put in at least two to three potential events that could have somebody else enter a thread by having them filled with their own characters, or make it so that their character can come up with their own logical reasons for being there. One of the most important things I try to impress on is, even though the thread is basically about my character, and another person's character, whatever's going on around them isn't about our characters, they're just one of many things happening on that day, and there's other things going on around them.

Typically, my opening post can usually be somewhere between 3-7 paragraphs, and then the rest of the thread I do about a paragraph or two, and it usually winds up my characters do a -lot- of talking and IC thinking. It's a bad habit, I think.

Is this making any sense? Do other people start threads like this? How do other people typically start their own threads, both open threads and planned threads?

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Okies, for me the very first thing I do when making a post is to look at the players likely to join this Open Rp thread. While I like to think anyone would join this, sometimes it’s clear that only certain players feel brave enough to jump into an open rp. This is to be expected, especially if you are not active or not yet known in a new roleplay site. I look at the average post length going on and I try to match that or even do a little less. This makes my first post seem friendlier or easier to approach. Not everyone can post walls of text or be super descriptive and I want as many people as I can to feel comfortable about hoping in and just get to playing.

I start with a little blurb about my character observing their surroundings such as weather or time of day. I then move onto how my character is feeling, what they are thinking about doing that day, or what they had just got done doing. This creates a chance for anyone jumping in to have a character want to do the same thing, either learning to do it; or needing to, such as shopping. Thrown in here is a bit of description of my characters looks and current clothing.

 

Once this is finished I moved on to the action part of my post. Them moving to do their task and perhaps interacting with NPC’s. I like to have some dialogue for whoever joins to overhear if they want to. Maybe my character is complaining or revealing some personal information to the NPC as they know them. I might end it here, or I might have something happen. In this bit of setting, I have created for just this post; my character is in a marketplace and a thief has just stolen a noble’s ring. My character is then accused of the theft. Now here is drama, action and a good jumping in point!

 

It is only after an rp partner joins that I then look at their past post lengths and I change mine to fit theirs. If it’s more detailed I add in more, or maybe it’s just longer? I extend my own post length. If they like how I currently post, no change! My default length is four to six paragraphs but I can do just one, or many more. I try to make myself as flexible as possible so I can rp with as many different people as I can and experience different ways of writing.

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I have two goals when creating an open thread:

 

xx Provide a "hook" for the other player to get involved.

 

xx Provide a plausible direction of where the thread would go.

 

 

Descriptions of character, setting, timeline, and all of that are helpful, but if I cannot find a reason my character would interact with the other player's, I don't respond to the thread. The plausible direction of where to go can be an OOC note on an open topics thread ("Looking for X to make a new friend. Help her carry some groceries home?") or some kind of blurb in-character ("I'm just looking for someone to help me carry these bags home," she said.)

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I don't do often OPEN threads for another person to join; if I want a one on one, I plot it with the most appropriate people. I usually do COLLECTIVE threads, open for a whole faction or for several factions. The description of the title says clearly for which factions it is open, and I link it in the c-box or I PM/ email the people whose characters should join the thread too. If it is the case, I highlight all the character opportunities, but sometimes it is clear why the characters x are needed: the pirates and the Navy men because it's a battle, everyone in x town because it is a public festival, the pirates aboard their ship because it's the council meeting (and where could they be in other place, if the bossun piped all hands on deck?), all the nobility at the ball, etc.

 

They are started by the most appropriate character or NPC, who offers the description of the environment and situation, providing ways to the others to join. For example, a public holiday festivities might be opened by the Bishop, inside the Cathedral, if it is a religious holiday, or by the Governor, if it is a lay one. The captain ordering something opens a thread aboard a ship... or the look-out who had seen the enemy ship. If it is a working scene or a tavern scene, again the most appropriate character would be opening it.

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I tended to use busy scene starters, not busy as in many NPCs running around like headless chickens, but instead my character isn't twiddling their thumbs staring into space, and nor are they engaged in something where it's too awkward to force in a second character. Example: my character has left a 'legalised gambling den' with his winnings, but is not quite sober enough to walk straight, and isn't being quiet about it.

 

I can't work with starters involving the character reading in a corner, for instance, or a character who is in the middle of a lake, drowning. There needs to be a good, consistent with my character's recent activities!reason as to why he is THERE, at that precise time. Randomly blundering across an incident feels fake and doesn't make for good, organic development.

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On 3/27/2018 at 10:03 AM, ReDRidingHood said:

I have two goals when creating an open thread:

 

xx Provide a "hook" for the other player to get involved.

 

xx Provide a plausible direction of where the thread would go.

 

 

This is pretty much what I want in an open thread as well--to extend a reason for the other person but also a possible way to move it forward as well. I don't even think it has to be long. Some people achieve this through a sentence or two in comm threads. <3

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Reality is an illusion. 

 

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  • 3 weeks later...

I'm pretty odd, most of my starters end up with some snarky mental note or observation that I feel would be amusing. I describe only the necessary bits and leave the rest up for imagination so my partners have free reign to do as they please - with both my character and the environment.  I know that some people hate this, but I've struggled in the past with detailing EVERYTHING and that made it very hard to find consistent writing partners. I find this way is more fluid and fun overall.

If I wasted my time on everyone, I wouldn't have any left for myself.

- A.

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I was taught way back in grade school to start with something that gets the reader's attention, so that's usually how I start off. Doesn't really matter what it is, a loud noise, a short action, a heart wrenching sentence...  Just something that I think will get the attention of whoever I'm posting to/happens to come upon the thread and draw their interest.

 

Then, I tend to go into a little bit of retrospection/thoughts, and what currently brought the character to the point they're at in the thread. I usually follow that up with the location, describing what they're actually doing, etc etc.

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My threads are typically started by me, despite my offline ailments.  I write a detailed background and why the boys I play are where they are.  It stems immediately after my applications get approved.  The way I pen is five-hundred or more words if a partner gives me enough to imagine.  You see, plots roll in my head like a movie.  I might even speak replies out loud.  Most individuals don't enjoy lengthy things, but I'm never going to accommodate their preferences before mine.

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  • 3 weeks later...

not too different from things that have already been said, but: i like to start with a thought that my character is having, or a line of dialogue of them talking to themselves. that way, it's easier for me to establish my character's personality from the get-go. from there, i usually end up making some sort of transition from what they're thinking/feeling/saying to what's around them: i'll describe the environment, starting with the time of day and then off into my character's immediate surroundings, so that it's easy for whoever posts next to visualize where everything is. after that, it's usually a description of what's been going on with my character in previous threads, or just what led them to whatever point/place they're at in the roleplay/plot. from there, it really depends on the type of thread ( a major plot development vs. simple interaction ) as to deciding where i go with it next.

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