Ok, so it recently came to my attention that some of you here have varied opinions on my story.
First, I’d like to thank @FairyGodfeather for giving their opinion on the matter and advising me to edit the story so that it does not include a real-life missing plane. A lot of other users also had the same thoughts, the general consensus being that the wounds are still fresh and that this story has been written too soon.
I’d like to thank @MultipleChoice for taking a different stance on this matter, saying that this tragedy will be scarcely remembered by the public in years to come and that they do not find writings based around tragedies to be ‘ill-tasting’.
I’ve read everybody’s comment and taken all of your opinions into account. In the end, I’ve decided to change the name of the flight in the story and make it entirely fictional.
I’d like to thank everybody for taking their time to read what I had to say and discussing it with each other.
I will post the story link again once editing in complete.
I’m also interested in a writing an interactive story based on this. If anyone has any ideas, please share them below.
I’m not going to read the story.
I think that while it’s okay to be inspired by a real life event, it’s best not to use that actual incident. It’s far too recent. So I’d say, writing a story about a plane going missing, then it returning a set time later and no one has any memory of what occurred during that time is fine. Writing it about a very recent tragedy is a different matter.
I know it may appear that my story is insensitive at first glance. But although I have named the plane, all of the characters portrayed in the story are fictional.
It doesn’t really matter whether the characters are real or not. It’s still a touchy subject.
Yeah, I talked about that on another topic. The general consensus is that it can’t be too recent and that you must treat it with the utmost care.
I didn’t read all of it, but I think you might get away with making a flight story, like you made, but make it a European airline and don’t mention Malaysia. Other things can be similar though. Good writing, though! You can go look at ‘a poll on circumstances in media’ for other questions.
That’s part of the problem. Why don’t you rename the plane too?
You’ve taken a tragedy, with a passenger manifest consisting mostly of Chinese and Malaysians, and then made it about an American. You have Americans investigating, an American who appears to be central to your story. Your story appears to be based in America.
This also means that you’re dismissing the very real stories of those who were on that plane, and the anguish that their families and loved ones must be going through.
Shift it to a fictional incident, inspired by the events.
Definitely too soon in my opinion. There’s still plenty of people over here who’s touchy about that subject and having it fictionalized like this feels like the whole incident is been trivialized for the sake of fiction. Especially since you wrote it as the passengers and the crews are still alive since currently no one knows what happened to them. So…yeah, just change the name of the plane, the airline and maybe it’ll be fine,
I don’t find writings on or around recent tragedies ill-tasting. The author isn’t trying to mock the subject material here. It’s not the butt of a joke, but the context behind a piece of fiction. The media cycle has long since moved on to newer topics of the day, and the Malaysian missing plane will scarcely be remembered by most a year from now.
But someone coming across your story will be reminded of it, and that’s a good thing. Sure the characters are fictional and may have psychic powers, but even so it humanizes that “239 missing” number in ways Wolf Blitzer never could. There’s real value to that. If you can turn a piece of current history into an enjoyable read—where the reader is made more informed about what happened after than before they read it—then by all means, write!
What I don’t want to see is a trend of over-sensitivity stifling creativity. Not on a forum centered around young writers.
The problem is, it’s recent enough that the families who lost people are still in deep pain with a lack of closure. A friend of a friend lost someone on that plane, and it is legitimately painful for that person.
I think it really is rude to fictionalize something that happened not even a year ago that ended in the death of 239 people.
There will be no stifling of creativity by changing names and dates. It will still be the same story, only this time those who lost people will not have to relive that experience.
@MultipleChoice The media where? The media in the US? Do you think those who’ve lost loved ones and family members have forgotten oh so easily. It’s not even been a year since the disappearance, investigations are still underway and the wounds oh so fresh.
I do find it in bad taste to take a recent tragedy and white-wash it. I especially find it in bad taste to suggest that this somehow humanizes it. I do find it in bad taste to attempt to profit out of tragedies too. (Not saying the author is trying to do this.)
If you want to humanise it, then go start searching google, read about the real people who’ve been affected, read their families anguish.
I think suggesting that these people are involved in some sort of conspiracy or supernatural cover-up is cruel. These are real people we’re speaking about. And the story, as it is, seems filled with misinformation, it’s a fictional, American-centric account of a disaster that has little to do with America.
But, I do think it’s possible to take inspiration from such tragedies and to write fictional stories inspired by them. Just change the names of the flight, change the setting.
I think less than a year is far too soon.
Also it’s not a matter of over-sensitivity stifling creativity. We’re not saying don’t write the story, just change the details so it’s no longer about a real disaster, make it all fictional.
Unfortunately with a tragedy like this, there really isn’t any closure. Time will lessen wounds sure, but friends and family of those who were lost will never forget what they did lose on that flight. They held bonds that you and I and the vast majority of people will never truly know. Neither we nor the author could write that with any justice, with the sort of magnitude on that personal level.
But we could write to remind readers of what did happen. Make a story that brings that awareness to some kid on the internet who could care less about a news story back in early 2014.
And that kid on the internet might prefer their media in a white-washed or graham-crackered or blonde-haired-blue-eyes-apple-pie-fed American form. That doesn’t matter, because it might make the kid interested enough to read the wikipedia article on what really happened. And that does matter.
I stress that to fictionalize something isn’t the same as to make fun of something or profiteer off of something. As far as time is concerned—what’s the publicly acceptable amount of time? You’ll never be able to write something that brings any closure or depth to the wounds the loved ones have endured, but you shouldn’t let that stop you from writing.
I’ll end my spiel with a one-liner. Writers, please don’t let fears of being rude or upsetting someone ever stop you from writing what you feel like putting down on paper. God knows there’s already enough fears working against us!
The problem is that it’s not a piece of story, or a poetry that is putting the tragedy.into the public’s mind. I think that, it’s being told in an interactive fiction or a game that trivializes the situation. This is still an ongoing investigation where the plane’s wreckage has not been discovered yet and now someone is creating a game based on the event? If someone who has lost a family member/loved one on that flight discovers that a game has been created of this event, how would they feel? Marginalized? That their loss has been cheapened for the sake of someone’s pleasure?
It’s all fine to write about some a terrible event so that people can remember about it and so that future generations can ponder on it further. Is it fine to create a game out of the event that happened slightly over half a year ago when the wounds are still fresh and memories are still raw? That is for the writer to decide in this case.
I strongly disagree with what you’re saying. The investigations are still ongoing. There is actually still coverage in the news over here. I think it’s extremely inappropriate. Also there is never an excuse for white-washing. Better to teach that kid that there’s people other than him in the world and not everything revolves around him.
@Grapefruit I actually think that it’s a story is every bit as much a problem.
I don’t think games necessarily trivialise situations. In fact I think some of them can provide new insights that you just can’t get in other forms of media. Games and interactive fiction can be extremely powerful. .
But. I spoke to a friend about this and they said “My feelings are that there are literally thousands of people still deeply distressed over it and making art about it is salt in still fairly fresh wounds. The families of the dead have a right to make art and say or feel anything they want to, but their feelings ought to come first.”
And I’m swayed by their point of view.
@FairyGodfeather Definitely, the views of those whose families are involved in this matter should come first no matter what.
Alright. It’s been a while since I’ve been on here. Hopefully, I’m not too rusty.
This isn’t my kind of story, but that doesn’t really matter. You know why? That’s because you can write about whatever subject matter you want using whatever kind of recent events you want. And anyone who tells you otherwise is wrong. You can even profit from that story if you want. Sure, you’ll be seen as an… unsavory character (to put it lightly) by most everyone on the planet, but no one can really stop you from making money off it.
I mostly enjoy stories that hold historical events. They have a certain element to them that ‘inspirations’ just can’t match. We need more stories on here that have that element.
It’s really up to you as to how you want to go through with it. Be prepared for a shitstorm if you do want to profit from it though.
I thought it was discovered that that plane was shot down by pro-russian rebels in Ukraine.
@Shoelip That’s a different flight. MH-17 was the one shot down in Ukraine in July this year. MH-370 disappeared in March this year while it was flying to China. There are some conspiracy theories that say that they’re the same plane but otherwise, the two flights are two different planes that just belonged to the same airline.
Firstly, I am actually pro-censorship. I do not believe in the purity of the written word above all else and that people should be allowed to write, and distribute anything they want, regardless of how offensive it is. However, I don’t consider this story in that category.
I consider it misguided at best. I don’t think there’s any actual attempt by the author to be offensive. However, he did come here, to this interactive fiction forum, with a non-interactive story, and then asked our opinions on how he could write an interactive story based on it.
My first, and main suggestion is don’t. I’m not saying don’t write the story, just to change the details and any claim to being related to MH-370.
The story is not historical. While March 2014 may be in the past I would consider it still a current event. The investigation is ongoing. That’s besides the point though. The little of what I read was not well researched. It wasn’t accurate in the slightest, and as well as containing a fictionalist account of what happened afterwards, it Americanised things. When you make that amount of changes what’s the point of then using the flight name?
Do what Criminal Minds did (which I also consider in bad taste) and just make it a fictional American version. Because it’s not realistic. It is just inspired. I’d also suggest reading http://www.cracked.com/article_21624_5-creepy-unsolved-disappearances-that-nobody-can-explain.html and getting inspired a bit more by other events too.
Distributing anything, I don’t agree with. For writing, however, everything is fair game. After all, you can’t really tell what someone is writing unless they decide to share it with you. Writing is something used to expand one’s imagination and should be limited only by said persons imagination. Not by censorship of a distasteful subject matter.
I may not care for the story nor the subject matter, but there may be some people out there who do. Clearly, this guy does considering he came here to ask advice on how to make it an interactive adventure. Who are you or I to deny his right to write (stupid rhymes) about flight MH-370 with a plot that makes little sense and is Americanized? I may have seen some atrocious stories that I regret reading or buying, but never once do I think they should never have been written.
As for the history part, time moves ever onward. It will be history before people even realize it. A decade from now, most everyone will forget about it; a century from now, it will be a footnote in the history textbooks. And both of those will pass in the blink of an eye.
It will be history in due time. Four, five years from now, the event will have moved on from people’s mind and at that time, I’m certain if he wants to write it again, no one will object. The problem is that the event is still relatively fresh in people’s mind, with a current investigation that’s going on and would probably take two to three years to resolve (the last airplane to disappear in such a manner was found two years after its disappearance at the bottom of the Atlantic)
If the OP had said he wanted to write the story about a missing plane that suddenly showed up and with the passengers’ mind wiped without mentioning that it was MH370, I’m sure no one would have batted an eye. It would be a simple mystery game that centered around a missing plane. But it’s not. It’s specifically mentioned as an actual missing plane that is still missing. Should the story not be written? By all means, go ahead and write it but change it so that it’s not the MH370. At least be considerate of the people who has lost loved ones on that flight.