I’ve mentioned Abulafia Random Generators before. Well I’ve created one: Tarot Plot Generator as a writing tool, to inspire myself with plot ideas, using the symbolism of the tarot. It details the main character and three acts with fourteen cards.
Here is an example, continued after “More”…
Description: (Reversed) PENTACLES Knight.–An useful man; useful discoveries. Reversed: A brave man out of employment.
Past: (Reversed) CUPS Ace.–Inflexible will, unalterable law. Reversed: Unexpected change of position.
Wants: (Reversed) WANDS Knight.–A bad card; according to some readings, alienation. Reversed: For a woman, marriage, but probably frustrated.
Strength: WANDS Page.–Young man of family in search of young lady. Reversed: Bad news.
Weakness: 8. FORTITUDE.–Power, energy, action, courage, magnanimity; also complete success and honours. Reversed: Despotism, abuse if power, weakness, discord, sometimes even disgrace.
Obstacle to “wants”: CUPS Two.–Favourable in things of pleasure and business, as well as love; also wealth and honour. Reversed: Passion.
My favorite part:
Walk up to random people and say “WHAT YEAR IS THIS?” and when they tell you, get quiet and then say “Then there’s still time!” and run off.
I am obsessed with Random Generators, and have been for awhile. I like the idea that a program with some algorithms and data can create something (seemingly) new. Like the Postmodern Essay Generator or the Random Slashdot Story Generator or a Random Haiku Generator.
I’ve wanted to use generators as inspiration for writing and have found the Plot Keyword Oracle at Abulafia Random Generators. Albulafia is a wiki that allows you to pretty easily create random text generators. A lot of it is geared towards Role playing games (a la Dungeons and Dragons), but I lot of it will work as inspiration for writers of all kinds. For the Plot Keyword Oracle, Robert Donoghue extracted 32,000 keywords from the Internet Movie Database and the Plot Keyword Oracle presents you with 10 keywords randomly pulled from the list. For example in one run I got:
- Collection Agent
- Homing Device
- Wedding Industry
- Nuclear Winter
- Martin Luther King
- Pool Hustler
- Urban Planning
- Deputy Dawg
- Uncle Tom’s Cabin
- Dresden Germany
Wow! That would be one hell of a story!
Jorn Barger is a friggin GENIUS. Sometimes I have to reread his posts a couple of times just to fully understand him. Like this post about about the Yahoo Zodiac (his term?) describing information cataloging. Another post on Yahoo Zodiac. Jorn’s blog, Robot Wisdom 2. Jorn calls Robot Wisdom (#1) a weblog but it is really more linky. His home page.
Epic tragedy story telling with 8 bit video game sprites? Yep, and it’s awesome. Story in 5 parts, watch them (it’s flash) in any order but watch number 5 last.