Alright, I think it is about time I sit down and direct my attention back toward writing. I've had fun perusing random political/socio-economic things, but what's really important for me to do right now is develop my craft.
My current project (which is still in it's infancy stages) is a dark story set deep in the southern deserts of this world. With inspirations such as Dark Sun and the Dark Tower series, our hero must journey deep into the desert and delve into ancient, long-sealed tombs in order to try to find the secret behind the mysterious dreams he has been experiencing, and hopefully free himself from a curse which has taken from him everything that he loved.
So, my question is, in a dark story like this, how do I keep it interesting? How do I give the player a ray of hope? See, in this story, I happen to know that there's a bad ending. The character gets to his destination, and his choices are either to free himself from the curse, but die in the process, or embrace the curse and gain magnificent power and immortal life.
So, I can presage the choice (it is a gamebook after all--a genre focused on choices), but I want something more. Some basis for immediate tension.
The angle I'm considering taking is making it a bit more of an adventure story, rather than focusing on just the dark. Yes, he's cursed, and he wants to free himself from the curse, but maybe that doesn't need to mean that he gives up on life. Maybe he's still a swashbuckling hero, out to do good where he can, and determined to free himself?
In a setting of desert and ruins, this could open the door to a lot of Indiana Jones style adventures. Which could make it more fun, and add a fun element to a dark story.
So I watched Indiana Jones for inspiration!
Then, in order to study it more, I pulled down the movie script and read it, to study how the written word turns into a complete movie experience. Next time, my lessons from the Indiana Jones movie script!