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    • CommentTimeJun 26th 2011 edited

    (I dont think this thread has been done before…)

    Hey dudes I’m back. Sort of. I think. I dunno. I became a lurker because I am a horrible writer in terms of actually writing rather than writing skill (though my skills probably aren’t very good because I don’t write). Didn’t have much to contribute but now that I am on holidays I really want to write again but videogames and things get in the way.

    So yeah I want to discuss time travel. Why? Because while I don’t write I still love to plan/make synopsises and my latest idea is about time travel. When I started planning this story that I want to be a Youtube series I make with my friends (oh god it’s going to be so much hard work and possibly expensive) I remembered why I effing love writing. Constructing stories and figuring things out and getting new ideas and forming the story without an exact idea of where it’s going to go and who the characters are feels so good. When it comes together I feel like a GENIUS despite it probably not being all that great. And yet I can never get past the synopsis… At least this time I only have to write scripts which should be easier. Then comes the filming…

    So if this series is somehow made I will keep you guys posted. Could be months, could be years. I was stupid enough to plonk my bag on a table with my video camera in it so it is malfunctioning. It constantly focuses and unfocuses when you try to zoom and I might take it to an expensive cam repair place soon. OR can someone go back in time and stop me from ever breaking it in the first place?!?!!

    Anywayz… yeah so do you like time travel, do you hate it? What do you think of paradoxes and other time travel concepts? What stories involving time travel are good or bad? How do you do time travel the right way? If you could time travel where would you go? Have any of you written about time travel? Yeah.

    • CommentTimeJun 27th 2011

    Time travel is awesome! I know I’m biased because I’m a Doctor Who fan, so obviously I’m going to like time travel, but I think it’s such a fascinating concept. A lot has been done with it, of course, but there’s always more than can be done.

    Personally, I’ve always been torn between the “parallel worlds” theory of time travel (in that you really travel to a different universe where things play out differently than in your original universe; Dr. McNinja seems to be taking this route of late) and the “inevitable” timeline, where reality sort of always ends up doing the same thing, so it’s safe to travel in time. Doctor Who tends to take this view, I think, with the whole “fixed” events and “fluid” events—some you can meddle in without changing the future (or perhaps you were always the one who was going to fix things so it’d be OK in the future!) and some you can’t, they just happen no matter what you do.


    I like the idea of time-travel…it raises all sorts of interesting questions, although to some extent it’s now difficult to come up with new ones and resolve the old ones in interesting, fresh ways. I can’t say much more than that because the extent of my time-travel knowledge is Back to the Future.

    Anyway, for a short story I’m writing, the main character is a scientist who’s co-opted time-travel technology to travel into created worlds. A bit of a tweak and more along the ‘parallel worlds’ thing that swenson mentioned, I guess. I don’t know if that’s really realistic, but I thought it would be kind of fun.


    I might get into Dr Who but I would want to watch the whole thing and don’t think I could deal with the old black and white episodes. How does the time travel exactly work in it? Like every episode do they just travel to a different time/reality and stuff happens then onto the next place?

    I am not too fond of the whole you can’t change anything time will just correct itself thing because I find it hard to believe that a human’s willpower and actions could not change things if they have specific knowledge of what happened and maybe even if they didnt. If whatever happened happened like in LOST where things only happened BECAUSE they were in the past making it happen, then thats a little better but creates the paradox which again makes it not make sense. Well I guess it lessens the paradox when the time travellers dont know what they’re doing, but if they know they’ve got to do something in order to make sure it happened in the present then it gets a bit screwy.

    One thing I liked in LOST that purposely made no sense at all was the compass/watch/whatever. Richard gave it to Locke, and Locke went into the past and gave it to Richard, thus creating an endless loop for the watch where it shouldn’t exist at all and should keep getting older and older.

    SWQ, about new, interesting, fresh ways to resolve time travel stories, I believe I came up with a doozie. Though I bet it’s been done before like everything else. But yeah I am quite proud of my time travel story that goes by the creating new timelines concept. I love Back to the Future but it is filled with plot holes. Not the best example for believable time travel but who cares? It’s entertaining. I would like to read your short story when it’s done. I really hope I get this Youtube series done and get to what I think is a fantastic mind-blowing ending.


    I am not too fond of the whole you can’t change anything time will just correct itself thing because I find it hard to believe that a human’s willpower and actions could not change things if they have specific knowledge of what happened and maybe even if they didnt.

    This. The only way that you can’t change the future is if it’s fated. Even so, fate can be flexible enough that you could possibly change events on the way to the outcome, though maybe not the outcome itself.

    Thanks for the interest in my story, happycrab. If you’d whisper your email address, I’d be glad to email it to you. Your feedback would be really appreciated, since I’m submitting it to a contest (it’s due June 30…yeah, I procrastinated).


    Yeah I dont like fate controlling things to the extent that if you try to change something, something random will happen to prevent it. Or an organisation of people are around to make sure fate stays on course but what happens when one of them decides to rebel? Hey that’s not a bad idea for a time travel story…

    Oh so it’s done. My email is in my account info and it’s kind of embarrassing; it was made in simpler times. Probably not a good idea to make my email so public but whatever. What’s this contest?


    The story’s not done…I have actually yet to write it, which is what I meant when I said that I procrastinated. It’s L. Ron Hubbard’s Writers of the Future contest (seriously, don’t laugh at me). I doubt I’ll win a prize, but it’s free to enter and I could win $1000, so why not?


    I prefer the sort of time travel where the protagonists go back and change stuff, and then return to a world that’s really different. Either only their memories have stayed the same (so they have separate time-streams to the world), or the whole world remembers that things were really really different half a second ago.

    If I ever wrote a time-travel piece, this is what it’d be like.

    • CommentTimeJun 27th 2011

    Re: Doctor Who:

    • CommentTimeJun 27th 2011 edited

    Oh right damn 2-3 days to do it. Good luck. I am definitely not going to rush however many words in the next few days to get a chance. Probably not even eligible.

    Steph yeah my story is basically like that but a bit different. You should write a time travel story.

    Ok swenson I might just start with the 9th doctor then and maybe read up on a few things of the old episodes.


    Happycrab- it’s actually not a tragedy if I don’t get it ready in time, because it’s pretty much a year-round thing. One contest ends on June 30, but a new one begins on July 1 and goes until September, so you can just enter then if you want. Here’s a link if you want:


    The thing about time travel stories is that, regardless of the rules you choose, you must stick to those rules. If you’ve thought your take on it through and it has sound internal logic, you can’t wobble or else you’re gonna lose the reader.

    As far as systems go, I prefer the Futurama/Harry Potter single timeline setup. If you could go back in time and change the past, you’d have already done it when it happened the “first” time. It’s a lot less messy in terms of narrative, but if you can handle the consequences of a meddle-able timeline, go for it.

    • CommentTimeJun 28th 2011 edited

    I’m not too big on time travel; I rather prefer to emphasize fate and circular journeys. Part of this is my world view and part of this is being a Classics nut (Vergil <3), but I like the feeling that things are because they are part of some thing that must be.

    I’d still like to experiment with time travel a bit in writing though; there’s a particular novel that I want to write that deals with time travel. It came from a dream that was surprisingly vivid. I dreamed about a boy who found an old journal in an attic that took him back to when a certain girl lived. I saw that girl and the boy, holding his magic journal, dressed in Roman clothing and riding in the back of a cart. I also dreamed of the girl saying goodbye to the boy, because she was travelling to China to be married, but for some reason the magic journal could only bring the boy to Rome.

    Putting the pieces of this dream together in my head, I thought it would make a wonderful historical fiction based on the Silk Road during the height of the Roman Empire. It’s quite a stretch in terms of historical accuracy, but it would be so much fun to write!

    The time travel mechanism is what’s been bothering me. Magic plot devices are all good, but they have to make some sense. Can the magic item bring people from the past into the future, or does it only work to bring the bearer into the past, then back? Why? And what could be a reason for it to be region-locked? It doesn’t make much sense for the magic item to be unique in the context of my story, so there would be other artefacts like it, but why? What was their origin/purpose?

    It’s thinking about the mechanics of time travel that gives me a headache more than time travel paradoxes, since my modern character is so far removed from his alternate life in Ancient Rome that it would be difficult to create a paradox by his actions in the past. It’s interesting to think about implications, though. What if my character chose to live his life out in Ancient Rome, then died there? Would he simply disappear from the moment in the future that he left from?

    I agree with sansa about rules for time travel; I’m not fond of time travel because too often, it’s arbitrary. But working out rules for time travel is easier said than done.


    SWQ well thats good. I might bother then.

    sansafro yeah but Futurama sometimes breaks its rules. Or it did at least once in Bender’s Big Score. One time when Bender went back in time he was always there at that time. Then a short time after that he travels back in time and its a completely new scenario where he wasnt there before. If that made sense. And Futurama loves its paradoxes with people only doing stuff in the past because they know they need to do it, but thats ok because it’s a random sitcom. Harry Potter’s time travel mostly made sense except for Harry sort of realising his “dad” was him. The film made it more paradoxy but meh it was cool and logical enough.

    Hmm sounds interesting Miel. If this object is indeed magical then I think you can easily explain why it does what it does. My potential youtube series is meant to be serious for the most part, but the actual existance of the time machine in the first place is purposely silly. Someone just makes it and that’s it you are meant to accept it and move on and enjoy the story. I have other time travel ideas like a book that attempts to cover every single time travel trope and parody the concept to show how little sense it makes. But for now I want to do a basic more serious easier series. I think the rules I have thought up are pretty solid.


    It’s thinking about the mechanics of time travel that gives me a headache more than time travel paradoxes

    For my current short story, I’m sticking to the ‘He’s a genius!’ trick until I manage to think of something. :P A reason I don’t know all that much about time travel.


    As far as systems go, I prefer the Futurama/Harry Potter single timeline setup. If you could go back in time and change the past, you’d have already done it when it happened the “first” time. It’s a lot less messy in terms of narrative, but if you can handle the consequences of a meddle-able timeline, go for it.

    I think this is what time travel would be like if it was real, but I also think it’s boring as all heck.

    • CommentTimeJun 28th 2011

    Not if you do it right. Example: watch the episodes of Babylon 5 titled “Babylon Squared” (season 1, ep. 20), then the two-part “War Without End” (season 3, eps. 16&17). (heck, just watch Babylon 5.) That’s my go-to example for realistic/believable time travel.


    Great another show I need to watch. On top of all the games I need to play. And the books I should be reading. And the life I should be having. Will those episodes make enough sense on their own if I watch them instead of the whole series?


    Lol, no.


    Naaaaaaww. Pretty sure Sheldon in The Big Bang Theory hates Babylon 5. What’s there to hate about it?

    • CommentTimeJun 29th 2011

    Hate? Babylon 5? WHAAATTTTT?


    I don’t like Babylon 5 because one of the characters (don’t know his name) annoys the crap out of me. It’s his voice mostly. He’s an alien with weird hair. That’s the best description I have. He narrates one of the movies, I think.


    You mean Londo? Yeah, I gotta admit. He annoyed the hell out of me for the first three seasons.


    I just googled him. Yes. That guy. I hate that guy.


    Yeah I hate that guy too (never watched the show). Well I think Sheldon’s hate for it isnt because of a character he just thinks the story is bad or something I dont know it never really goes indepth.


    Isn’t Sheldon supposed to be a Trekkie? Would be reasonable for him to hate a show that prides itself on being the anti-Star Trek.


    He is a Trekkie but also likes Star Wars. Don’t see why people can’t just like it all.

    • CommentTimeJun 30th 2011

    @NP: Yeah, Londo’s accent is a bit weird, especially since he’s the only member of his species that speaks like that. I will defend him, though, because he has this really great character arc. He’s such a tragic character.

    Don’t see why people can’t just like it all.

    Honestly, I’m pretty sure most geeky people do. I think the whole Star Trek vs. Star Wars vs. Babylon 5 vs. Firefly vs. whatever is more common in TV and movies than in real life.


    Well my videocamera will cost $348.60 AUD to repair so screw that. And I dont really wanna go buy a new camera. If I film this time travel series I will either borrow a video camera from someone else, or not use the zoom function and pray that the focus doesnt screw up and no data gets corrupted. Frowny face.


    I don’t think Firefly has ever been put against anything. Find a geek, you find a Firefly-lover.

    Anyway, Sheldon hates Babylon 5 because he thinks it’s derivative.


    Not that we’re off-topic or anything.

      CommentAuthorEmil 1.4021
    • CommentTimeJul 12th 2011 edited
    I'm gonna have time travel in my story without it actually being time travel. One of the characters gets into the subconcious mind of a big plasma blob (computer/organsim) and going around in there, trying to figure out alternative timelines, scenarios and vague leads (what's faulty information, or remnants of old propaganda/cencorship, etc.) in order to somewhat figure out why things are they way they are in the present.

    The advantage of this is that I get to play at the charater not fully knowing what's going on at the time... I hope it just doesn't end up feeling all too messy and forced once I've written it, meh ;P

    I think that idea sounds cool.


    You think so? :3



    Yeah that does sound really cool.

    I am co-writing my time travel script with someone and we cant figure out what to do in certain parts of the story. We have to think about filming locations and what we can do and what actors we can have but also we just simply don’t know what should happen. Plus we probably have to wait till summer to start filming because of the bad weather.


    My advice? Leave it to simmer for a chosen timeframe, then add a couple of days onto that. Things usually fall into place after that.


    Hey would anyone be kind enough to review the script for episode 1 of this time travel youtube series? I think my biggest flaw is dialogue and when I read my lines out loud trying to act them it sounds so fake. Maybe it’s because most of the dialogue is people talking about something impossible in real life so of course it’s fake. Or maybe it’s because I can’t act.

    The existence of the time machine isn’t meant to be taken very seriously. I want to just get it out of the way and expect the audience to just accept things and go with it. So here it is copied and pasted from a Word document so the formatting is wrong:

    • CommentTimeNov 19th 2011

    Haha, I liked that. Thanks for sharing.

    • CommentTimeNov 19th 2011 edited

    Thanks a lot man. This has really helped me.

    EDIT: Oh and the characters are 20. Didn’t realise you asked.

    • CommentTimeNov 20th 2011

    Coo’. If you write any more script you’re not sure of, throw it my way. I had fun with that.