META: A New Meta, A Grand Design - WISP(?)

deucexm deucexm at
Thu Jul 7 07:04:33 PDT 2016

So - I've had some significant discussion with Mr. Perron on the subject of Kamen Rider (the Japanese tokusatsu meta-series) and I thought I'd open it up to the rest of you delightful folks.

The main idea is one of, to quote him: 'creating a franchise like [Kamen Rider] - like, putting some basic recurring elements together, and having a lot of different writers do something with it.'

We both noticed that the HCCs have kind of fallen off somewhat recently, and while I did like those in theory, I note that sometimes you just don't have time during its particular window - due to work, or life events, or whatever else - and you miss out on what would otherwise be a really neat prompt/idea/etc.; and the 'incentive' (if you want to call it that; perhaps 'impetus'?) to use a particular prompt tends to fade once the HCC is over.

So I had the idea of a semi-collaborative effort.

Not something that requires each member to keep pace with the others - because we all work at different paces, naturally, even putting RL events aside - and not something time-based, either; but something with a unifying factor, a unifying theme that can cross into multiple universes without necessarily being 'a crossover'.  A conceptual connection, as opposed to a narrative one.

I come back to the example of Kamen Rider - first of all, because I've been watching a /lot/ of it lately (and it's great), and second, because it serves as a great example of the sort of thing I mean.  Mr. Perron can expound on the particular character/themes of the series a little better than I can, but visually at least: you have a person who transforms into a suited-up person, their suit has large eye-things, they ride a motorcycle, and they usually have a RIDER KICK! (though it's not given that name) as their 'special move'.  And with just this, there are multiple Kamen Rider series by different writers/directors, with different actors, that exist in different universes (though some are connected, and some cross over!), and have markedly different tones and styles - police procedural, tournament-sort-of-thing - but (and here's the important part) are still /immediately/ recognizable as being 'a Kamen Rider series', due to the thematic elements.

Yikes, that's a long paragraph in the editor.

So all of this kind of came to a head while, playing around as I do sometimes, I developed a story idea that I liked - and quickly found that it didn't fit in the DiVerse; not as-is, at any rate.  But with a little adjustment, it could fit just about /anywhere/ - and if I set some ground rules, some thematic elements, not only could other writers use it; there'd immediately be a sense of /connection/ to a greater whole, a meta-whole that spans universes known and unknown without a literal crossover (though the option is certainly on the table still!).

And it'd be as simple as adhering to the core concepts and using the meta tag, say 'WISP', since the driving force behind the thing in question (for now) is an entity called [the] Whisper.  So for example I'd tag one of my stories as DIVA/WISP (or I guess DIVX/WISP if it was an offshoot timeline...).

Without going too far into the specifics that I've planned (and I figure this post is long enough already), I'd like to see if there's any interest in this sort of thing - and, of course, let Mr. Perron add clarification as needed.  :)

- Colin

More information about the racc mailing list