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Thread: Shima - Commissioned Map

  1. #31
      Diamond is offline
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    ...And now you know the reason I usually don't do commissions. I did get a partial payment though, so it wasn't all for naught. And I may just finish it anyway for my own personal satisfaction at some point. Although if I do, I'm scrapping those mountains and going for icons instead.
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    "I like a look of agony, because I know it's true."

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  2. #32
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    Saw this in the bookstore this morning: Stormdancer (The Lotus War Book One): Jay Kristoff: Amazon.com: Books

    Maybe a possible reason why this seems to have died is the name of the client's setting is the same as in this book? I know from experience it's disheartening to come up with what you thought was an original name only to find out you probably subconsciously lifted it from somewhere else...
    "I like a look of agony, because I know it's true."

    -Emily Dickinson

  3. #33
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    It's not only disheartening, it's nearly impossible to recover from, for many people.

    Weird little semi-relevant story: I've always known I wanted to write. I used to write story after story and book after book - they were good too, except it was always a different lead character- but always with the same name. I'd been using that name for YEARS (since I was in first grade, actually) and I'd never known anyone by that name... I thought it was destiny So I kept using the name and kept writing (and finishing) better and better manuscripts.

    It was my good luck charm.

    When I was 14, we were going through a box of old papers, and I found a letter (sent to a long-ago former address) with my hero's name on it. I asked my mother, who said that it was a wrong-address sort of thing, and she'd forgotten to drop it back in the box.

    I asked "yeah, but who IS he?" and she said she didn't know. Then she said "Isn't that funny... you asked about it a lot when you were little too!" ... The postmark was the year I finished kindergarten.

    The name didn't just come to me. It wasn't destiny, or a good luck charm... it was some random scrap of memory I'd been clinging to, pointlessly.

    I was devastated for months.

    I had a hard time writing for a couple of years after that. Looking for inspiration, I finally went through everything I'd ever written, and noticed that *every* book was reminiscent of something I'd read at one point in time or another.

    Again, months of devastation.

    I haven't finished a single story since I found that letter. I *know* it's a mental block... I know *I* can fix it. I just can't do it. Even as a semi-sane (okay, not sane, but at least reasonable) person, I can't use that name. I can't *make* myself type it, even in this post! And the insane part of me still believes I've lost my good luck charm.

    Not really. I haven't finished anything because I'm too easily distracted now, and too caught up in the details of it, and, well, a little bit lazy. But every time I give up on the process, or hit a patch of writer's block, I DO still think of that name. And you can't help but wonder.


    So your guy... he gets this idea in his head. "Okay, we're on this world, named X. X is a world that has Y and Z." And everything he thinks of after that is based on X.

    Now the X is a lie.

    Well, not a lie, but not as original as he thought it was either. I can easily see how he'd start to wonder if *any* of his setting was original.

    Or... maybe he had a buddy that said "Dude, you're paying someone for a map? I'll draw you a map for free!"

    Neither of those things makes it okay for him to leave you hanging, after agreeing to hire you, but...

    at least you got a partial payment ?

  4. #34
      Diamond is offline
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    Well, I haven't been quite that devastated when I've found myself (or had pointed out to me) using already-existant names (most recently Pentos and Vendhya - in the same freakin' map!), but yeah, it kind of breaks your spirit a little and leaves you wondering if anything you've done is really original even in some tiny way.

    The worst is when you've got a substantial amount written that you know is worth saving, and stumble across a scenario like this, because then you realize you've got to go back through dozens upon dozens of pages and edit that damn name. Sigh.
    "I like a look of agony, because I know it's true."

    -Emily Dickinson

  5. #35
      Ilanthar is offline
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    By Diamond
    Well, I haven't been quite that devastated when I've found myself (or had pointed out to me) using already-existant names (most recently Pentos and Vendhya - in the same freakin' map!), but yeah, it kind of breaks your spirit a little and leaves you wondering if anything you've done is really original even in some tiny way.
    Well, I think it's quite common actually. I encoutered the same "problems" (and sometimes not with names but with an idea or a concept) from time to time and come to think of two main reasons for that :
    1) As you said previously : our brain is a true sponge and we accumulate things, ideas and names sometimes without recalling having already seen those.
    2) And I believe that sometimes it just happen that two persons come to write or think of the same name(s)/concept(s). Maybe because of a similar course of thoughts or a close "cultural baggage/inspirational sources".
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  6. #36
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    Well and if you take the # of sounds it's possible for a human to make, and all their not-too-long-to-be-a-name combinations, and then you subtract everything that's already a word in every language, and then all the ones that have already been used as names of fantasy places/people, AND the ones that don't look/feel like a name, but more like you just hit your keyboard, and the ones...


    Nevermind, my point is, there's actually relatively few ways left to combine the sounds we're capable of pronouncing, without using something that's been done before, or someone else coming up with your same name choice, eventually - either before or after you do.

    And it is a crushing feeling - it makes you doubt yourself (though I may have been a bit dramatic in telling of my experience - a combination of the writer in me, and an attempt to remember the high-strung emotions of teenage-girl-Jalyha. )

    But I really can't ever use that name again...


    ANYway. I know it sounds weird but is there any way you could just drop the client a line? Just something like, "Hey, I understand if you don't want to finish this, but it'd be nice to know why."

    He could have just temporarily forgotten the project, or lost his internet for a while (I do that all the time, then I come back and check my email and it's so full of spam, I just delete everything, and then people yell at me for not replying to theirs!)

    Or something (the name thing or something else) might have happened and he's simply afraid to tell you he doesn't want it anymore. If you ask *what* instead of "Are you gonna do this?" he might be more comfortable replying (and if you get friendly about it you could turn it around).

    Idk. I wish I could help D:

  7. #37
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    I've sent two emails, neither of which I felt were antagonistic. Like I said, guess I'll just shelve this for now and perhaps re-visit it after a few months if I don't hear anything...
    Jalyha likes this.
    "I like a look of agony, because I know it's true."

    -Emily Dickinson

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