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Dark Crystal novel writing contest

Discussion in 'Fantasy Worlds' started by Drtooth, Jun 19, 2013.

  1. Uwizll

    Uwizll Active Member

    *cracks knuckles*

    Bring it on! ;)
  2. ZeppoAndFriends

    ZeppoAndFriends Well-Known Member

    ...DON'T HURT ME! :eek:

    *Dives behind the couch*
  3. Uwizll

    Uwizll Active Member

    Hold the phone!

    I was just reading the Author Resource Guide (again) and I just noticed -- skekUng the General/Garthim Master/2nd Emperor is not on the Skeksis list.

    I understand that this is written in-universe and is not a complete list, but does this mean we shouldn't use skekUng in our books?

    The Guidebook includes info on the Skeksis we are familiar, plus a new one: skekMal the Hunter and skekVar the General (made for Legends of the Dark Crystal)

    Screw it. I'm writing in skekUng. He was skekSil's rival! He was lead in the cast of Skeksis. He has to be included for nostalgia's sake.
    *throws a pen at Zeppo, giggles and ducks behind sofa*
  4. ZeppoAndFriends

    ZeppoAndFriends Well-Known Member

    *Forgets to duck and gets a pen to the temple*

    Hold on. I mentioned him in my outline and could've sworn I got his name off the list in the Guide. It's just a small mention, but I gave him a story purpose that only he could fit. I hope we can still use him.

    You know what, if we don't get some definitive answers in the next few days, then I give up! I'm going to write what I want to write. If it doesn't conform to their vaguely defined rules and backstory, it's their fault, not mine! *Huff, huff, huff! Pouty, pouty, pout*
  5. Uwizll

    Uwizll Active Member

    I find it very hard to believe that Henson Company would leave him out and replace him with some comic book one.

    I have 2 theories: the people in charge of the whole project probably don't even know the difference between skekUng and skekVar (they have both been Emperor skekSo's General before, so I can see the confusion) and they simply thought skekVar was the guy from the movie: "I am Emper-RAWR!"

    Henson Co. (perhaps...) feel that skekVar is more easily pronounced and (perhaps?) trying to sneak skekVar in as the new "official" name of the General/Garthim Master. Ung is kind of... strange to say aloud.

    Okay, stupid theories, both of them. But seriously, did Henson Co. hire some guy off the street to head this project?

    I realize I sound whiny and bitter, but dang it... I was so excited for this. I want to make this work. But trying to write for this Contest has felt sort of like trying to squeeze a circle into a square hole.

    I'm with you, Zeppo. I'm waiting for clarification from Henson Co., you, anyone. But I think now I'm just going to write what I want to write. (You could argue that maybe that's what they wanted the entire time--but they should have made that clear.)

    *Shields face with writing notebook... peers out for a second...*

    http://darkcrystal.wikia.com/wiki/SkekVar is a Legends Skeksis.

    http://darkcrystal.wikia.com/wiki/SkekUng is the one missing from the Author Resources.
  6. ZeppoAndFriends

    ZeppoAndFriends Well-Known Member

    Has said post been posted yet?
  7. Uwizll

    Uwizll Active Member

    Ethan Gilsdorf's new post has not been posted yet. I will post on this thread the moment I see an update, though. Unfortunately there is no ETA.

    I'm really looking forward to this Henson interview.
  8. Uwizll

    Uwizll Active Member

    For everyone out there writing a novel -- looking at you, Zeppo -- I don't know if this picture has been circulated around, a lot. But I've never seen it before. Isn't it gorgeous? Obviously a Skeksis and Mystic from ancient times. I love it, I love it, I love it!

    This picture is pure inspiration.

    Even if you aren't writing for the novel contest, this picture is just nice to look for any fan of The Dark Crystal.
    Anyway, good luck, writers!

    EDIT: Sorry, I thought I could attach a photo. Go to http://www.movieinsider.com/m2667/the-power-of-the-dark-crystal/ and look at the photo of the Skeksis and what appears to be a captive urRu.
  9. ZeppoAndFriends

    ZeppoAndFriends Well-Known Member

    Wonderful art. I just wish they had a higher resolution. I'd love to see the details at full size.
  10. Uwizll

    Uwizll Active Member

    I will try to find a better resolution. I wish I knew where the picture came from...
  11. ZeppoAndFriends

    ZeppoAndFriends Well-Known Member

    I already did. There wasn't one.

    Anyway, seeing it gave my brain the connection it needed to collapse a few unconnected events into a single cohesive segment. Thank you!
  12. Uwizll

    Uwizll Active Member

    That's awesome, I'm glad I helped someone. :D
  13. cookietribe

    cookietribe Member

    While reading this thread I was thinking about other sci-fi and fantasy worlds such as Star Wars and Star Trek and how there is what is considered canon and non-canon, how those distinctions even came about, and the various discussions and controversies with all that. If you take a look online or your local book store and library there are tons of unofficial books, graphic novels, comics, etc written in the Star Wars and Star Trek worlds for example. So if you only saw the main Star Wars films, those are just a tiny sliver of the entire galaxies history which you can check out here on Wookipedia for example.

    I'm not an expert on these issues but I wonder why these two sci-fi worlds for example allowed more authors to write additional works and adaptations but for other sci-fi fantasy series such as the Dark Crystal we are discussing here, there haven't been as much or anything at all. Maybe it had something to do with that some worlds such as Star Wars, Star Trek, Avatar, etc weren't based on original books? Although I'm sure the various legalities, copyrights, money interests, etc play a greater role in these kinds of situations. Another example is the Lord of the Rings world by Tolkien, I'm not sure if there have been (m)any book additions and adaptations by other authors other than audio dramas, films, etc - maybe others can clarify.

    Another series which has some adaptations is the Barsoom series by Edgar Burroughs, I thought the recent John Carter film was great, and the original 1917 book was actually influential on later sci-fi such as Star Wars and Avatar. Also I recently came across a new author taking up his addition to the Little Fuzzy series which is interesting.

    I don't mean to change the main subject of the thread so maybe this would have to be discussed in detail elsewhere, and as mentioned I'm not an expert on all the author copyright issues and don't have a lot of time to research everything so maybe others can explain. So I'm wondering what people think of this situation applied to the Dark Crystal?

    It's just my opinion but I think it would be better if instead of choosing from 5 finalists for a novel that the process of new authors adding to the Dark Crystal universe was more open, although as the various examples pointed out above, I'm not sure how that would specifically unfold with the Henson Company. While the Dark Crystal is it's own unique thing and not as bombastic and popular as Star Wars, et al - I think it would be interesting to see more authors adaptations and expansions of the original world. :insatiable:

    p.s. I also updated the info thread here which may help any writers with their entries for the contest, for writing on your own for fun and for old/new fans in general.
  14. Uwizll

    Uwizll Active Member

    I may be totally wrong, but my think the reason that Dark Crystal doesn't have a huge expanded universe (like Star Wars/Trek does) is because when the original film was released it was considered a flop.

    Even today, whenever I bring up Dark Crystal to friends and family, the typical response is “Ooh… that movie. It was kind of weird.” (Maybe I just have loser friends, haha) So I don’t think that, even today, it’s a fantastically popular movie.

    Plus, Doctor Who, Star Wars, and Star Trek’s universes kind of have built-in story devices.

    Star Wars has many characters, worlds, creatures, and histories to work with. The expanded universe materials just take what is given to them and expand and add to it.

    In the Dark Crystal, we don’t really have a lot of information about much of anything about Thra really. We only know the story of the urSkeks and their screwings with the development of Thra. I think that’s why there isn’t a large base of expanded universe materials—there isn’t a lot to go off. At least not yet.

    If Henson Co. really opens up Thra by deepening its mythos, adding new creatures and civilizations and histories, it will be easier to create novels/ graphic novels/movies.
  15. cookietribe

    cookietribe Member

    Yeah I think because it's a darker fantasy adventure film that actually shows and develops evil characters in some detail, and has a unique non-human otherworldy atmosphere and setting in general is one reason why more people don't like it. It's a not a completely flashy and happy type story and all that, so it depends on people's personality too.

    Yeah I didn't add this above originally in my post but I actually think the Dark Crystal world is fine as it is with what we have - the novelization, film, graphic novels and a few other things. I like that it's not so complicated like the Stars Wars universe for example, there's just too much and that doesn't always mean it's a better thing. And fans have been writing their own fan fiction over the years with what info we do have so it's not completely impossible to get a good story as it is. At the end of the ET Flashback video Jim Henson said he didn't really see a sequel happening, but that "you could tell another story in the same world" - maybe some other gelflings on another part of Thra or a story set before the original film's time period.

    So even though some fans wouldn't like a really big expanded world (with gelflings commanding spaceships or who knows what) and I can understand the issues with that, I think it's still possible considering that the urSkeks have interplanetary/interstellar travel and that they ended up on Thra. They came from another neighboring world and it's possible they had traveled to other worlds before (and after?) in the solar system that Thra is in or nearby. So there could be many planets and histories in the area. Again though, to a certain degree that would put more focus on the urSkeks and their travels, and less on Thra's natives which are integral to the original Dark Crystal story as we know and love it.

    So going back to the idea that I like the Dark Crystal because it's a more intimate "local" story of one area on one planet instead of hopping around the entire galaxy super fast. Another film that does this - focusing on an intimate story instead of a broad action filled epic saga - is Enemy Mine which came out around the same time as the Dark Crystal and also has a similar atmosphere though it is more of a sci-fi film with humans instead of a fantasy.

    Either way I think the current or expanded Dark Crystal world is/would be a cool setting, so there'll be no flamewar coming from me! :insatiable:
  16. Laszlo

    Laszlo Well-Known Member

    Hehe, this brings back memories with my shool friends bck then. I think I was the only one who really loved the movie.
  17. Laszlo

    Laszlo Well-Known Member

    I like it too just as it is. Realistic and not too complicated.
  18. Laszlo

    Laszlo Well-Known Member

    How about add some of the Skeksis language? Much of it can be found in the novel and the World of book. Both excellent books!
  19. Uwizll

    Uwizll Active Member

    I think I expressed myself wrong. I apologize.

    I, too, love how the DC story is realistic and uncomplicated. In my earlier post, when I referenced Star Wars/Trek, I was explaining my theory as to why there isn't a lot of expanded materials in the Dark Crystal universe.

    I want to be clear: I would never want to see starships or interplanetary travel in the DC universe. It wouldn't be true to the spirit of DC.

    I like to believe that there is a Crystal on every inhabited world in the DC universe. But I wouldn't want to visit any of these worlds in a DC story.

    That's exactly what I want the new DC novel(s) to do. Another time, another place on Thra. A new tale.
  20. cookietribe

    cookietribe Member

    Hey no need to apologize cause I didn't mean to come across in a wrong way myself, it is the internet and all, it can be difficult to understand people and try to communicate amiably. :o When I mentioned a flamewar, I meant it lightly and didn't mean one here. It could just be me because I often see people arguing about anything on the interwebs so I was thinking people might get into an unfriendly "original versus expanded universe" debate. Sorry for that misunderstanding.:insatiable:

    I agree about no typical spaceships, although maybe the gelflings might invent some other kind of space travel which fits into their civilization's mythos and aesthetic? Something more gentle and organic looking, maybe aided in part by the mystics and/or urSkeks.

    Even without that though we still have an entire planet which they colonized so when I was thinking about it, it kinda makes more sense to have another parallel story or stories before the film's time. If the gelflings crossed oceans, discovered and colonized over time in the past then you've got a great setting for an adventure right there. Some people pointed out that it would be interesting to see but that it would feel pointless because we know later the gelfings are nearly exterminated. There was a similar thing in Star Wars when the Jedi were mostly killed off except Yoda, Obi-Wan and some others and in the prequel trilogy we see that process unfold so I think it would still be cool to read or watch even though we know the general storyline. And I just remembered the Lord of the Rings - the Hobbitt is being released now and even though we all know what eventually happened to the ring and all that, it's still cool to see visualized anyway.

    At the end of the film the castle is restored and we can guess that Jen and Kira will live in a peaceful age with the podlings and other animals, but what would they do before they pass away? If there were other gelfling survivors on other parts of Thra hiding and surviving in ruins then maybe they could go on a journey to find and unite the lost gelfings to rebuild their civilization again.

    Seems like that would pretty much be the main thing they could do, but then again, I may be thinking too logically about a fantasy story. I think that this would make more sense than having the crystal be damaged again as proposed in the sequel film idea. Although I'm just as curious to see that idea about creatures underground/from an inner world inside the planet, and wouldn't mind if it came about.

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