Day 14: Rules of the Fantastic Element
I have a bad habit of coming up with fantastic elements and then not getting down a clear idea of the rules for the element before I start writing. That leads to a lot of making up contradictory things as I go along. Since the fantastic element–the parasite–is such a major part of the story, I should probably have a pretty darn good idea of how it works. Today’s exercise is going to be doing just that.
Exercise: Outline the rules of the fantastic element. Who controls it? Where does it originate? What does it do? When does it work? What happens if it’s removed (from the world/person/etc.)? What are its weaknesses? Write out any and all rules that could potentially limit or strengthen the element.
- The bad guys control the parasites
- The parasite is implanted in the spine at the base of the recipient’s skull
- The parasite releases a chemical that allows it to program the recipient’s actions and speech
- The chemical that allows the control of actions and major speech can only be released by a remote trigger/control
- The chemical that restricts the recipient from speaking about the parasite is less potent but released in a slow, constant stream from the parasite
- When the remote chemical isn’t activated, the recipient is able to go about their daily life as they would otherwise except for being unable to discuss the parasite
- The parasite is located at such a point on the recipient’s spine that removal without paralyzing the recipient can only be done by a very skilled surgeon
- The chemical which controls actions and major speech can be depleted after twenty uses and more of the chemical must be injected directly into the parasite.
- The parasite can run out of either chemical and the recipient will return to normal