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Random Questions Thread:

Hello, fellow writers! Got any question that you can't find answer from Google or Wikipedia, but you don't think it needs a separate thread for? You came to the right place!

Don't be shy, and just ask away. The nice folks here, writers and non-writers, experts and non-experts, will do their best to help you.

Please don't use this thread for open-ended questions that are likely to inspire/require extended conversation, or discussion. Make a dedicated thread for it, or use the most appropriate of the special interest threads linked below. Thank you.

Now, for any questions involving particular fields, here are the links to the appropriate threads, mostly at OTC, but also from Yack Fest and Troper Coven:

edited 8th May '14 2:40:56 PM by dRoy

 26 Crystal Glacia, Sun, 27th Mar '11 4:34:14 PM from Cedarpointland
patience, young padawan
My character faints at the sight of blood. He attempts to avert this problem by applying a blindfold. Will this work, or will the sound and smell of gore still make him faint?

I think it would depend on his character. The smell is distinctive, and there are some people who can look at blood, but can't handle the smell. So, no. It will not work, and the attempt would look rather pathetic given what I know about AB!Beowulf.
What would the most likely response of Europe be if the standing POTUS were assassinated as part of a hostile takeover of the United States by Oprah Winfrey?
This is still a signature.
 28 annebeeche, Sun, 27th Mar '11 5:04:47 PM from by the long tidal river
watching down on us
First roaring laughter, then blank horror. Also, how did they react to JFK?

edited 27th Mar '11 5:09:44 PM by annebeeche

Banned entirely for telling FE that he was being rude and not contributing to the discussion. I shall watch down from the goon heavens.
 29 Mr AHR, Sun, 27th Mar '11 5:06:23 PM from ಠ_ಠ Relationship Status: A cockroach, nothing can kill it.
Ahr river
about blood — Plus, even if he can't see it, if he knows the blood is there, he will probably be very titchy and jumpy.

edited 27th Mar '11 5:06:46 PM by MrAHR

 30 animemetalhead, Sun, 27th Mar '11 9:07:03 PM from Ashwood Landing, ME
Runs on Awesomeness
How could I dress a succubus so that it shows what she is without being overly Stripperiffic?
No one believes me when I say angels can turn their panties into guns.
 31 Crystal Glacia, Sun, 27th Mar '11 9:10:15 PM from Cedarpointland
patience, young padawan
Dress her in clothes that show off and hug her figure in flattering ways without baring lots of skin. Maybe... Sexy Secretary-grade clothes. Those aren't traditionally Stripperiffic.
 32 annebeeche, Sun, 27th Mar '11 9:20:20 PM from by the long tidal river
watching down on us
[up][up] How about, like, showing it through her behavior?
Banned entirely for telling FE that he was being rude and not contributing to the discussion. I shall watch down from the goon heavens.
It's easy, mmkay?
If you're only asking about costuming, how about a lot of black and red and wing/horn motifs?
At first I didn't realize I needed all this stuff...
 34 annebeeche, Sun, 27th Mar '11 9:29:34 PM from by the long tidal river
watching down on us
[up] No like a boss.

edited 27th Mar '11 9:30:16 PM by annebeeche

Banned entirely for telling FE that he was being rude and not contributing to the discussion. I shall watch down from the goon heavens.
It's easy, mmkay?
Well no duh that there are more important things than costuming, but he just ASKED about costuming, so yeah.
At first I didn't realize I needed all this stuff...
 36 animemetalhead, Sun, 27th Mar '11 9:38:05 PM from Ashwood Landing, ME
Runs on Awesomeness
Yeah, the concern is costuming, though it's not essential (writing a novel, not a manga). I already have most of her personality rounded out, and she doesn't act like a seductress unless its to help her team. I want to avoid going "hey, this is Lena, she's a succubus."
No one believes me when I say angels can turn their panties into guns.
 37 annebeeche, Mon, 28th Mar '11 8:09:32 AM from by the long tidal river
watching down on us
So I think I've figured out a compromise to Beowulf's blood-fainting problem: I decided to make fainting a delayed reaction—when in the presence of gore, he feels faint, sick to the stomach and vomits all over the place first, and then faints in a few minutes. The reaction being delayed seems to be how it usually works anyway.

So he has time to act against Grendel with the 30x Ring of Strength, without having to lose his weakness.

I myself don't see the blindfold thing as pathetic (though his contemporaries might), merely a good idea in theory—better than running away rather than trying to make the most of his inevitable fate. I might have him propose the idea, and a friend of his take it off.
Banned entirely for telling FE that he was being rude and not contributing to the discussion. I shall watch down from the goon heavens.
It's easy, mmkay?
How about just mention that it's kind of skimpy? Or go the other route and have her normal clothes be very excessively modest to avoid Power Incontinence?
At first I didn't realize I needed all this stuff...
 39 d Roy, Sun, 3rd Apr '11 9:11:50 AM Relationship Status: Getting away with murder
To succubi OP...I...don't think it's possible. Well, if you ask me, that is.

Would it possible to parkour on motorbike? It is very sleek and heavily modified, as it could do some jump and run on the vertical surfaces, even for a limited time.

Also, would attaching machine gun, missile, and cable on it would make a motorbike Bat-bike rip off? In that vein, would making a transforming motorbike would automatically make it a transformers rip off?

edited 3rd Apr '11 9:20:31 AM by dRoy

 40 Wheezy, Sun, 3rd Apr '11 9:21:47 AM from Tampa, FL. Again.
(That Guy You Met Once)
@Succubusses: A Little Black Dress or something similar would work. Just think of something tight (in black, red, or some other "evil" color) with a low neckline, but that doesn't cross into Absolute Cleavage.

@ Rhymes with orange: No one word rhymes with orange, but plenty of word combinations do:

Your, floor, bore, lore, door, gore, more, shore, ore, four, war, core, whore, etc. + Hinge, binge, cringe, singe, tinge, or fringe would work.

edited 4th Apr '11 8:22:30 AM by Wheezy

 41 d Roy, Sun, 3rd Apr '11 9:28:22 AM Relationship Status: Getting away with murder
[up] *Jaw Drops* Good lord, that's brilliant! I'm assuming you are really good with english vocabulary?

I spy with my little eye
What's the best way of dealing with/avoiding Human-Focused Adaptation?* Should I deconstruct this by having the main characters' involvement make things worse for the cartoons (the problem being world-gate shifts that have destroyed much of the land and displaced many people both in the land of Anima and in other worlds)? Or perhaps have these two characters be The Ishmaels? Or have these two be involved in the conflict, but not the solution/coming up with the solution, but the solution requires everyone?

edited 3rd Apr '11 10:03:50 PM by PumpkinLore

Say it once! Say it twice! Take a chance and roll the dice! Ride with the moon in the dead of night!
 43 KSPAM, Sun, 3rd Apr '11 10:10:05 PM from The Slaine Pain Train Relationship Status: Sinking with my ship
ALL ABOARD!
What's the average penetration of a bullet from a 9mm pistol? What would the size of the exit wound be if one exists?

What are the chances of striking a major artery if the aformentioned pistol was aimed at the arms or legs and the shooter didn't consider this possibility before hand? How long would it take for someone to bleed out with an injury like this?

What is the most efficient way to cause a short circuit in a large mansion's fusebox?
Team? You mean cannon fodder? — neobowman

Goodfae: a mafia web serial
 44 Madrugada, Sun, 3rd Apr '11 10:15:13 PM Relationship Status: In season
Zzzzzzzzzz
^
  • It's going to depend on what it hits.
  • It's going to depend on a lot of things, including the load type, the precise gun, the bullet type, and what it hits.
  • Look at a circulation chart. Use Google Images.
  • It's going to depend on what it hits. Femoral artery high in the thigh — between one and three minutes. Femoral lower in the leg — a bit longer — maybe 7 to 10. Jugular or carotid — one to two minutes.

  • It depends on what it hi— oh wait, sorry. tongue It depends on several things — is it a old-fashioned fuse box or a new breaker box? Do you just want the power off or do you want the power to be difficult to restore, requiring an electrician? Are you concerned about the possibility of fire from whatever you do? What, if any, tools or equipment do you have available? The easiest thing to do is simply trip the main circuit breaker. That would cut all power to the whole house. The problem with that is it's just as easy to restore the power — all someone else has to do is go reset it. Considerably nastier, but requiring some equipment, would be to cut the main circuit breaker, then wearing insulated gloves (just to be safe) use insulated cutters to cut all of the wires coming out of the circuit box. That would require an electrician and a goodly chunk of time to repair.

edited 4th Apr '11 9:11:58 AM by Madrugada

'He strutted across the bedroom, his hard manhood pointing the way' sounds like he owns a badly named seeing-eye dog. 'Sit, Hard Manhood!
 45 d Roy, Mon, 4th Apr '11 5:44:17 AM Relationship Status: Getting away with murder
Which facial disguise do you think is more effective:
  • One that casts illusion on the face that the face looks like The Blank.
  • White mask with only eyes?

 46 Wheezy, Mon, 4th Apr '11 8:22:57 AM from Tampa, FL. Again.
(That Guy You Met Once)
@dRoy: Thank you.
 47 Morven, Mon, 4th Apr '11 8:38:45 AM from Seattle, WA, USA
Nemesis
I'd also note that in many (US, at least) houses, the circuit breakers are removable, and most people don't keep spares around, or if they do they keep them in the same place or close by. It would have the power off until they got to e.g. Home Depot, and most people wouldn't be able to find out what ratings they needed anyway if the things were missing.
A brighter future for a darker age.
 48 Madrugada, Mon, 4th Apr '11 9:10:45 AM Relationship Status: In season
Zzzzzzzzzz
^ That too. I know that the breakers in my house can be removed, but I don't know how, and I know that I don't have any spares. That would also work with an old-style fuse box — fuses are easy to remove, but most people only have one or two spares, if that.
'He strutted across the bedroom, his hard manhood pointing the way' sounds like he owns a badly named seeing-eye dog. 'Sit, Hard Manhood!
 49 snowfoxofdeath, Mon, 4th Apr '11 9:23:18 AM from San Francisco Suburb
Thou errant flap-dragon!
Is the plot where a dead person leaving behind a diary or other form of recording device so that the protagonists can get vital information that the enemy is after getting too cliched?
 50 Morven, Mon, 4th Apr '11 9:29:30 AM from Seattle, WA, USA
Nemesis
It's not a dead horse trope, but it has been done a lot. You might want to at least complicate it a bit to make it less stereotypical.
A brighter future for a darker age.
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