Writing What You Don't Know: The Assistants

Discussion in 'Make It So' started by jacktrash, Aug 3, 2016.

  1. Emma

    Emma Your resident resident

    I'm so fluent in English that people assume I'm from England whenever I visit, and I'll curse in either language tbh.
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  2. ChelG

    ChelG Well-Known Member

    Might depend on the context. If it's a case of cussing in surprise, yeah, they'll go for their native tongue, most likely. In conversation, like "so I told him to go fuck himself", then depending on the character they might either not know the curse words or have those be the first part of the second language that they learned.
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  3. bushwah

    bushwah a known rule consequentialist

    Also depends on the audience. Like I can think of scenarios where I would say “so I told him to go fuck himself,” or “so I told him (foreign phrase) which means basically to go fuck oneself but really to shit in one’s donkey’s pen,” or “so I said something very rude and he went away.”
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  4. ChelG

    ChelG Well-Known Member

  5. Mercury

    Mercury 17 Quicksilver Scribe Tramples The Unrepentant

    It just occurred to me that my husband barely curses in English at all. Well, compared to me, anyway. In Finnish though? When he's annoyed at a game or computer issue or something, he swears up a storm. XD So a character who isn't a native speaker of English may seem to other characters not to curse casually much or at all, but then they see this character stub their toe or something and they may not understand what comes out of this character's mouth but they can tell by the intonation that they're swearing a blue streak!
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  6. jacktrash

    jacktrash spherical sockbox

    also, when you learn a foreign language, unless you're learning by total immersion, you don't learn swears until quite late in the game. so even if you're very fluent in the language, you're probably not nearly as fluent in cussing and slang.

    so even if you want to cuss someone out in your second language, and know how to call them an asshole equivalent, you're not going to be able to call them a cock-gargling shitclown, and sometimes you gotta.

    edit: this insight brought to you only partly by experience and logic, and mostly by a cherished memory of my grandmother gifting a problematic neighbor with what little me was convinced must be a shakespearean monologue in czech, and my grandfather, when asked to translate, saying "i couldn't do it justice."
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2019
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  7. Wingyl

    Wingyl Allegedly Magic

    (you might learn the swears earlier if you actively seek them out)
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  8. ChelG

    ChelG Well-Known Member


    A question; if I wanna try a new writing style, could it work to try typing out single sentences in that style as practice, at first?
  9. bushwah

    bushwah a known rule consequentialist

    I'm not sure what a writing style is in this context but yes, single sentence writing exercises can be useful! I've landed myself in hot water by trying too hard to piece them together instead of writing something cohesive, though, so watch out for that.
  10. ChelG

    ChelG Well-Known Member

    Specifically I get a kick out of a particular writer's ridiculously over-the-top style and want to try to imitate it, but I find it embarrassing to actually type out, so I was thinking it could be entertaining to give it a go in small doses.
  11. bushwah

    bushwah a known rule consequentialist


    I wish you the absolute best of luck in your forays into shamelessness.
  12. Misty Pond

    Misty Pond Well-Known Member

    (there might be a better place to put this, but this is for my writing, so)

    does anyone have any tips on how to design a goth character? I recently made a new girl who I want to give that aesthetic, but I don't know too much about what exactly constitutes a goth aesthetic beyond 'lots of black'. (if it's any help, she's a vampire fangirl)
  13. artistformerlyknownasdave

    artistformerlyknownasdave revenge of ricky schrödinger

    *dabs goth-ly*

    so, there’s a lot of goth sub-styles as it were, and then lots of ways to fit into each one. romantic goth is the look i usually think about when it comes to vampires—think morticia and gomez, lace, ballgowns, that kind of thing. there’s also gothic lolita, tradgoth, cyber goth, pastel goth, corporate goth, etc. there’s a lot of subtypes, so i’d look into those and see if any strike your fancy, and then build her look around those!
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  14. Codeless

    Codeless Cheshire Cat

    You can also mix and match! Wearing victorian goth ruffles with a trad goth poofy hairstyle is absolutely something people do. One note on gothic lolita, the lolita side of this is a very particular thing, so if you go for that either you´ll need to read up on that or just call it goth, because it will definitely be that.
    • Agree x 2
  15. ChelG

    ChelG Well-Known Member

  16. Misty Pond

    Misty Pond Well-Known Member

    been developing a realistic terminal illness--could I have some feedback from people more experienced in biology/medical stuff on how plausible it sounds?

    ‘Rust Syndrome’ is a terminal illness spread by infected blood. It is a progressive flesh-eating disease that causes gradual necrosis across the body, and is infamous for how it causes random hemorrhaging in patients. It was named for the way the disease causes the patient’s body and, in later stages, the mind to ‘rust’ over. Patients with Rust Syndrome must undergo frequent debridement, and may even need to amputate body parts, to ensure necrotic tissue does not build up and cause further problems.

    Symptoms of Rust Syndrome include purpura; hemophilia; hair loss and loss of pigmentation; anemia and ischemia; cardiovascular and respiratory problems; fatigue; organ failure; and a wide berth of mental health problems. In later stages, Rust Syndrome can specifically cause symptoms of psychosis to manifest. Patients with Rust Syndrome also tend to have a weakened immune system. This has caused many patients to die from secondary diseases or infections.

    Rust Syndrome has been traced back to the rust (Pucciniales), a fungal parasite; however, researchers have been unable to conclude how and why rusts became capable of infecting humans. This mystery is a major reason why more efficient treatment, let alone a cure, for Rust Syndrome has yet to be developed.
  17. Silver Sheep


    Syndrome is the word for a set of symptoms that go together but we don't know exactly what causes them. In this case we know the infecting agent so it wouldn't be a syndrome anymore.

    Identifying how the fungus is infecting humans is one potential route to a treatment, but not the only one. We don't really need to know how it's killing us to be able to kill it back. Antifungal medications exist, but tend to be rough on the patient -- perhaps since the fungus is causing so much widespread damage to the body, the patients can't handle the extra toxicity. Then the challenge would be finding a less-toxic but still effective drug.

    It's kind of a coincidence that the disease is named for the symptoms, but then also it was a rust causing it.

    (my credentials are I listen to an infectious diseases podcast)
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  18. TheOwlet

    TheOwlet A feathered pillow filled with salt and science

    also if it causes random hemorrhaging i'd say that it kills rather quickly, since there's a limited places in the body where 'suddenly bleed profusely' wouldn't be a huge problem. Bleeding into say, the chest could quickly impact the lungs and heart function by fluid pressure, and of course bleeding in the brain is it's own beast of horrible issues, likely comparable to a aneurysm which can kill you quite quickly and I suspect that you would run into these problems most of the time before you start seeing 'proper' mental symptoms. If necrosis is an issue, internal necrosis might also be one. If the tissue dies because capillary bleed or blockage disrupts the oxygen supply, then there's no reason why it shouldn't also be happening to internal organs, which again would make it something that kills rather quickly.

    it's also worth considering *why* the diseases would do certain thing. Why does it cause hairloss and loss of pigmentation? The other ones look fairly intuitive based on something that sits in your blood and eats your veins but these two jump out at me as somewhat confounding.

    depending on how much of an epidemic you wanna run, it might be worth looking into airborne transmission. Bleeding into the lung + coughing = infected blood getting potentially everywhere, though then it might also be worth to consider how long the blood stays infected. Most fungi like it warm and damp and won't do super well in other conditions unless they going around as hardy spores.
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  19. Misty Pond

    Misty Pond Well-Known Member

    clearly I need to fine-tune my research skills, lol. I took the above into consideration and edited the disease description + added some more details and stuff. does this one sound much better?

    Rust Diease: A terminal illness spread by infected blood. Rust disease is a progressive flesh-eating disease that causes gradual necrosis across the body. Initial signs of the disease begin to manifest up to a few weeks after infection, but it can be hard to diagnose rust disease early on due to how the symptoms can be confused for more benign problems, such as skin or nutrition problems. Those infected with rust disease usually only live for another ten to twenty years at best.

    Symptoms of rust disease include purpura; hemophilia; anemia and ischemia; cardiovascular and respiratory problems; fatigue; organ failure; and a wide berth of mental health problems. In later stages, rust disease causes random, potentially fatal hemorrhaging—a somewhat infamous symptom among the public—and patients can develop psychosis. Stunted growth is common among patients who were infected during childhood. Patients with rust disease also tend to have a weakened immune system; this has caused many patients to die from secondary diseases or infections.

    Rust disease has been traced back to the rust (Pucciniales), a fungal parasite; however, researchers have been unable to conclude how and why rusts became capable of infecting humans.

    Currently, there is no cure for rust disease. An antifungal treatment has been developed, but the medication can potentially cause more problems, due to how vulnerable patients are made to toxic chemicals. Scientists’ current priority is developing a more efficient treatment that puts less strain on the patient’s body. In the meantime, rust disease is generally combated by methods such as frequent debridement—even amputation, in extreme cases—to help stem the spread of necrotic tissue.

    I should probably mention that I based this disease on one in a game I really love, so that's probably why some of it stuck out as odd. well, gotta start somewhere? also, I looked at a few articles on the rust fungus, but couldn't find much concrete on how fast they infect or progress, so I just shrugged and made up some numbers to best fit my needs. though given the necrotic nature of the disease, I'm guessing 10-20 years might be implausible as the max life expectancy...

    also, should probably note this isn't for an apocalyptic endemic exactly (though maybe I could use it for one), but to explore the psychology of a person forced to live with a terminal illness that'll kill them quickly and horribly. it's just so horrible because it's based off a horror game and I'm a sucker for dark gory things, rip
  20. TheOwlet

    TheOwlet A feathered pillow filled with salt and science

    Yeah ten to twenty years is VERY generous. If you like, perhaps compare the extant Details for Aspergilosis, a mold infection in humans, often in the lungs of immunocompromised patidnts, and with a growing resistance problem to common antifungals.
    For the necrosis, i suggest working out why the tissue dies. Does the fungus eat it? In this
    Case, necrotizung bacteria might offer good paralleles. Or does the oxygen supply to the tissue fail due to blockage/bleefing? In this case, diseased with highly increased blood clottimg (morbus moschkowitz/ttp) or highly reduced bloodclotting (macumar misdose, etc) might be useful.
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