Author Topic: Do you enjoy time travel?  (Read 773 times)  

Offline marshallv

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Do you enjoy time travel?
« on: March 10, 2018, 11:54:20 AM »
My name is Marshall Vickery and I am the author of a historical novel that uses time travel incidentally as a mechanism to move the plot along and provide several exciting deus-ex-machina moments. I would like to know what you think about using time travel as a plot device.

Why do you think so many of us have a pretty serious fascination with time travel?


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« Last Edit: March 11, 2018, 04:35:09 AM by Ann in Arlington »
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Offline Ellie Lynn

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Re: Do you enjoy time travel?
« Reply #1 on: March 10, 2018, 12:16:30 PM »
I think time travel as a plot device is great if done well. Some people have the knack, some don't. For me, when I want to write in a whole new era, I find it works well to introduce the main character to said era, and then I can use the differences in time to explain away reactions the MC would have to experiencing the new time. ie: in the old west, the movies never tell you about the amount of horse poop on the streets of the towns, because, well, horses poop at will and no one runs behind them to clean it up. A modern day person would most certainly notice and probably comment on it.
Your story sounds interesting. Your protagonist most certainly would suffer with worrying over the risk to changing history, versus standing by and doing nothing. Interesting problem, indeed.

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Offline Jeff Tanyard

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Re: Do you enjoy time travel?
« Reply #2 on: March 13, 2018, 01:03:18 AM »
Why do you think so many of us have a pretty serious fascination with time travel?


I think many of us are dissatisfied with the time in which we live.  We long for either an idealized past or a utopian future, and we only rarely consider that those times will necessarily be just as complex and disappointing as our own.  Even when we do consider that, the urge to escape is always there, pricking at the backs of our minds, telling us that the temporal grass really is greener on the other side.
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Re: Do you enjoy time travel?
« Reply #3 on: March 13, 2018, 10:24:07 AM »
Time travel can be fun, and as such, I tend to prefer it in more of an obviously "fantasy" setting -- not the fantasy genre, necessarily, but not trying to suggest it is scientifically feasible, but more of a, "What if time travel were actually possible? What interesting/fun things could ensue?" If the book in general is trying to be very serious and suggest it is really possible, the author is probably going to have a challenge to get me to do the willing suspension of disbelief thing, as I know just enough about physics to know how unlikely it is that humans will ever be able to travel in time (at least backwards -- time dilation could in essence allow us to travel forward in time by going really, really fast through space for awhile).

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Online Lorri Moulton

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Re: Do you enjoy time travel?
« Reply #4 on: March 15, 2018, 04:25:45 PM »
I love the idea, but so many times...the time travel itself seems a bit forced.  Does anyone have recommendations for a story that includes a realistic time travel scenario or device? 

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Offline Joseph M. Erhardt

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Re: Do you enjoy time travel?
« Reply #5 on: March 17, 2018, 06:27:22 AM »
I'll enjoy a time-travel tale if the paradoxes are acknowledged and dealt with.  Anyone remember the TV series Seven Days?  After each episode, there should have been another Parker in the cast.  This could have been played up:  "We've got three Parkers now.  What the hell do we do with them?"  "Put 'em in a room with a deck of cards and have them play skat."

Etc.  In the show, the current Parker is conveniently forgotten when the future one appears to warn of some threat or other.

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Offline Rod Little

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Re: Do you enjoy time travel?
« Reply #6 on: March 19, 2018, 11:38:31 PM »
I enjoy Time Travel, but it gives me a headache. As for books with Time Travel as a plot device, it can be a great mechanism - if used well or with originality! The "Primeval" bbc tv series is a good example.  Or in print: Stephen King's "11/22/63" or Asimov's "End of Eternity."

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Offline A.G. Richards

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Re: Do you enjoy time travel?
« Reply #7 on: April 11, 2018, 09:47:54 AM »
Woody Allen's Midnight in Paris -- about travelling back to the age when Hemingway, Scott Fitzgerald etc. were in the city -- was his biggest success in ages, and so we very much DO dream of going back to some happier, maybe even simpler age. But it's very much an idealized fantasy. Face it, in 1930's Paris most of those artistic types were grindingly poor, and in just a few years time the Nazis would be on the way there.

Offline Max 007

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Re: Do you enjoy time travel?
« Reply #8 on: April 14, 2018, 04:44:11 PM »
My name is Marshall Vickery and I am the author of a historical novel that uses time travel incidentally as a mechanism to move the plot along and provide several exciting deus-ex-machina moments. I would like to know what you think about using time travel as a plot device.

Why do you think so many of us have a pretty serious fascination with time travel?


sorry -- self promotion is not allowed in the Book Corner.

Time travel as "Plot device" --- no I think - depends on what you mean by "plot device".

For me it is a part of the setting of or for the story.  The story could seem to circle around the device, machine, and/or the effects it produces.

But it is not the plot. But is, or can be, a major component of the story. "Paycheck" reveals this time machine thing at the end of the story as part of the epiphany ... but the plot was how the MC discovered that and things he put into motion and how he fixed things.

Time Travel as we like to imagine it, for most all authors I've seen, requires a device that can travel through time. It is a fantasy.

As I understand it, Time is a property and is not a dimension (sort of like gravity is a property of matter). No future exists, no past exists. You can not go there and come back. So I try and stick to hard science WRT time. I have written a story based on this. 

Special Theory of Relativity is true and can sort of appear as a "Time Machine" in a story based on time really being a property.  Induced relativity effect, a machine that seems to only travel into the future (so to speak). It was and is a fun work. 2nd book is being worked.

But I love the movie of H.G Wells', "The Time Machine" with Rod Taylor and Yvette Mimieux.  But the time machine was not the plot, it was a device used in the story. The focus was not the machine. Does machine drive story, or does story drive machine? It should be machine helps drive the story I think.

JMO ...

edit : if the machine becomes too big a part of the story or that the machine's use - causes a lot of problems (paradoxes) then it may seem the story is about the machine and its effects and how the characters figure all that out, niche readers like that too though.  To me that is story drives the machine. The story is about the machine (and its idea) so to speak.

again JMO ...
« Last Edit: April 14, 2018, 06:00:36 PM by Max 007 »

Offline Joseph M. Erhardt

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Re: Do you enjoy time travel?
« Reply #9 on: April 15, 2018, 04:40:47 AM »
Okay, can't help it.  Now that we're talking about plot devices, I have to post this link.

Setup:  Irregular Webcomic uses Lego figurines (and some others) for its comic characters.  Backgrounds are often photos the composer has taken himself.  IW comics run several different themes, e.g., a James Bond -ish theme, a Fantasy Adventure theme, a Pirate theme, a Steve Irwin -ish theme, a Space theme, and so forth.  While each theme has its own characters, the Deaths can appear in each theme, usually when they come to collect the victim of a mishap.  There's Death by Insanely Overpowered Fireballs ("Fireballs"), Death of Being Sat On by a Giant Frog, Death of Being Wrestled to Death by Steve, Death by Hat Making Chemicals, etc.  In the following link, Fireballs and Hat Making Chemicals are taking some time off in a pub:

http://www.irregularwebcomic.net/3838.html

Note also the article underneath the comic re: hat-making chemicals.  Insane.

And now some of you will hate me while you go back and read through a few thousand of these clever comics.

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Offline Kristen Tsetsi

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Re: Do you enjoy time travel?
« Reply #10 on: April 15, 2018, 07:46:26 AM »
I think people (myself included) enjoy the idea of time travel because any time that isn't our own seems more romantic. I mean, even look at how little attention we give a current, ongoing war and its soldiers and their stories, but how obsessed we are with Vietnam, WWI, WWII... as long as it isn't our current time period, whatever was happening was absolutely fascinating.
           

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