Constitution Officer's Manual/Advanced Simming
We on the Conny like to focus on characters and their development. While a basic description tells us the simple actions that are being completed by your character, elaboration and the addition of thoughts or background via descriptive paragraphs conveys a much deeper message to the other writers in the group.
That enabled us to see what your character is doing, what they see, feel, smell, hear and also why and how they react to certain things. It gives a full picture. Regardless of what kind of character you play, this adds depth that can make any character become more than just an idea on paper.
As an example, let’s take Bob. Officer Bob walks into a room, and Bob's writer can choose to portray this action in one of two ways:
- Bob walked into the room.
- As Bob entered the room he looked around. The aroma of honeysuckles lingered in the air, and there was a slow song playing. Taking another step, he bent over, tilting his head to peek around the corner.
As you can see, there is a pretty big difference between the two, and not just in word count! The second version gives much more insight into what the character is thinking and feeling, as well as what the room actually looks and feels like. Just like the writers behind these characters, they have numerous senses that can be used to describe any given situation.
Tip: Imagine the scene in your mind, that often happens that you can see it like in a movie. Now imagine that nobody else has seen that scene but you want them to know exactly what you have seen and what happened. Write out the details, so everyone can imagine what you had in mind.
As mentioned in the Basic Simming Manual we do remove other people’s descriptions and replace them through our own. That has several reasons. The biggest one is that each sim should be 100% through the eyes of your character. It will help to avoid confusions as to what your character does, says, thinks and sees. But it will also help to avoid repetition and show us your unique view.
Let me give you examples:
1. Avoid confusion
You read a sim written for let’s say Ensign Brave, a female Bolian and stumble over the following description:
- He ran a hand through his hair, wondering why he was even here. They didn’t like the work he was doing anyway.
We know that Ensign Brave has no hair and is a female, so why would ‘he’ run ‘his’ hand through hair that is not existent. While you might know from reading the sims before that this is the view from i.e. Crewman Tall, while reading Brave’s sim it is confusing. Also Ensign Brave would not know what Crewman Tall is thinking. So help out by avoiding confusing. Remove this line and if you want to write your own observation Ensign Brave could have written something like:
- The movement on the other side of the table drew her attention as Tall moved his hand through his hair. If she interpreted the expression on his face correctly he was uncomfortable, but human expressions were still confusing to her.
2. Avoid repetition
Especially in group settings like briefings or parties and the like repetition is a big issue. It can get boring to read the whole few lines about what is happening over and over. So why not bring in your character’s personal touch? Example: The Conny crew has come together for a briefing in the Observation lounge. Jalana is giving the run-down of the upcoming mission.
- Officer A is eagerly paying attention, soaking in every word.
- Officer B has not slept all night and is nodding off missing everything going on.
- Officer C has begun reading a PADD and just want to finish this one paragraph, missed parts and tries to catch up now putting together the pieces.
- Officer D was stuck in a lift and comes in too late.
- Officer E hates the destination and people there because of a traumatic event in the past, scowls the whole time and tries his hardest not to rip the table apart.
And so on. You do not have to be a model officer all the time. Bring in your character’s own view and action. That is what puts the flavour to the meal.