Linking my latest Medium post. Personal…but transparent.
-just access to the opening of the first few pages of the narrative (not the transplay/screenplay) for testing experimenting for Hyv cubers
Pedal. Pedal. Pedal…
In the dark.
In the dark and explosions.
In the dark the explosions assuage and a light is coming.
A light and voices.
“My feet are wet.”
Tom is aware that he may be sleeping as he recognizes that thought. In the darkness there are voices calling. A light barely breaks the darkness, warming his face and casting gently down from above him. He feels water being poured over his feet.
…or is that light actually ahead of him.
The voices are speaking but they sound like a gibberish foreign clucking.
He is dreaming. He must b…
There are five figures above him as he opens his eyes.
Five large flowers in silhouette from the sun, droop down over him. Each one of them different in shape. He hears the same ‘voices’ speaking to him as his eyes try to adjust.
A pause… ..and Tom notices someone must be turning the closest flower toward him, only to see the flower itself… ..has a face.
“Pedal?” The flower says.
Tom is stunned.
The speaking flower and the one just to his right, are looking through what seems to be some sort of plant-based scroll. They all have ‘faces’. With leaves and branches that seem to act and move as limbs. Another is holding a large rock with what looks like water in it.
Tom shakes his head to get the delusion out of his consciousness. The stone bowl is handed to the flower creature that is closest to his face, the others seem to be reading and arguing over the scroll. The flower closest to him yells at them as he takes the bowl, “yakor!”
Another speaks “Beepumty.”
“Beepumpty?” the yelling flower questions back.
The other flowers “ewwwwww.”
The yelling flower then pours the water on Tom’s face.
Tom bolts up, knocking all of them several feet, as he himself is yanked back by the many tubes and wires he is strapped to.
He is in a jungle.
But not like any jungle he had ever seen. His choking is disrupted by his own crying. The flower faces are staring at him from various places of hiding where they each were knocked to. As he is crying he sees he is surrounded by an old overgrown metal casing with the many tubes semi-attached to him. Even while freaking out, his throat feels on fire. He realizes the water is just water. He grabs the bowl of water, smells it, and as the flowers all watch, he takes a drink.
“Torturing me?” He blurts.
The flowers all speak up in recognition. “aaahhhhh.” Nodding to each other. Tom just stares forward. Seemingly numb. Takes in more water. He looks around and sees a squirrel, in a tree, that is covered in a turtle shell like armor. He sees a lizard like creature in the corner whose tail is planted in the ground. It’s paws are like jelly-fish. He drinks more.
“What?! What is happening?”
The flower creatures eye each other and Tom. The yelling flower speaks…
Tom looks over at them, now in fear. They jump away with excitement.
“Pedal! Pedal! Pedal!” They all scream with excitement as if they had a breakthrough. Tom lays back down in the metal vessel he was in. He sees the word “NASA” on the wall. He racks his brain what could have happened. Wondering why, or if, he is here. He seems inebriated in exhaustion and dehydration. His body is completely attached to the many wires and tubes that were thusly connected to the vessel. Which seemed partially underground.
He flashes back, remembering leaving school on the last day before Christmas vacation. It was snowing. He walked under the old railroad tunnel waiting for his mother to pick him up.
His mother pulled up in front of him with the family car and looked worried. She was saying something, but he could not tell what it was as he started to approach her. He heard the train. He realized he had put his bag down in the tunnel. He walked back, grabbed his bag, turned to look at his mother’s frightened face as she stared above him… …and that was all he could remember.
Now faced with a spectacular hallucination… ..He is startled as the blast from a tree overhead, fireworks sparked from the branches. The flowers came bursting in with him. Literally, more like a gallup on multiple leaves, dragging their roots. They jumped in the vessel obviously frightened, landing all around Tom. Tom sits upright to see outside the vessel walls. The sparks from the fireworks set several exotic looking plants aflame, screaming as they burn.
The smallest of the five flowers, that are now again with him, a little purplish-blue guy sat up panicking and pointing toward where he had run from.
He had left the scroll they were reading.
He turns to Tom with panicked eyes, tearful, looking as if he were trying to find the right word.
“Pashmea!” “Pashmea”…He thinks for a moment… “Boak.” “Boak” His eyes fill more.
Tom sees the scroll. One of the other flowers, the red one, says “Book” …“Pedal. Life. Book”
Tom says “Book?”
The little blue guy says, first pointing to the scroll “Book. uh… Esplain…” and points toward Tom “Pedal.”
Tom realizing they were referring to him, “Pedal.” Tom pulls the rest of the tubes that were attached to his body out of their bloody, molded connections, and looks for a safe path to get to the scroll. He shakes off as much dizziness, confusion and weakness as he can. He moves awkwardly for the scroll and realizes the air smells so clean, like right after a rain. He takes one step out of the structure and sees for the first time a hole that the capsule came from.. dragged and unearthed. He runs, as best he can, between the rain shower of sparks falling down around him to get the bark scroll when a small pterodactyl flies in front of him picking it up and flies up to one of the highest branches. He stops.
“You have got to be kidding me?”
He turns to the flowers and points upward toward the book in the pterodactyl’s claw.
They all nod.
He takes off the hospital johnny he is wearing over the t-shirt and briefs (although he feels a bit funny about flashing a bunch of talking flowers). He notices the flowers are pulling on liquid-filled glass vases that were sitting just outside of the pod he was in. He mumbles as he turns to climb the tree… “Great. The flowers get pants. I get the threat of a burned crotch”
His first step up the tree he notices something swinging from behind him. It is a woody, leaf tipped vine seeming like a creature or snake at his shoulder. He brushes it aside with minimal panic and continues to climb. (Not yet noticing this vine is his own tail).
When he reaches the branch that the small pterodactyl is on, it turns to him and says..
…at which Tom almost falls out of the tree. The vine (tail) from earlier, he thinks, seems to have caught him from falling.
He takes a moment to compose himself. The ‘bird’ says ‘“Pedal?”
The flowers start hooting and hollering at the bird. The pterodactyl squawks back, eyeing Tom. He turns to Tom.
“Are you meat?” His eyes are aglow with appetite,
At this moment the little blue flower hanging from a large, foot-long honeybee’s legs swings in from nowhere, knocking the pterodactyl off it’s perch. Tom grabs the scroll as it falls. The flower falls out of sight and the bird flies off, squawking something in a language Tom does not understand.
He climbs exhaustively down the limbs.
The other flowers ride below, and by, him on what looks like bicycles made out of vines and tree. Sitting on their unusual glass vases surrounding the water and roots that feed them. A swarm of large mutant-looking butterflies, bees and dragonflies (…and other unidentifiable insects) follow them. He follows them around the large tree trunk to find them surrounding the small blue flower whose vase is smashed. He is breathing laboriously as the flowers are shouting at each other and taking their own vases and pouring water on his roots. With no warning, the bird is suddenly back next to them.
The pterodactyl quickly picks up the little flower in his mouth, only to have a rock come sailing across and hit him in the head.
He drops the flower only to see Tom,
The prehistoric miniature bird takes again to the sky. The other flowers are throwing soil and water again over the roots.
Tom can smell the flowers as they move and yell. The yelling flower who first spoke to him in gibberish, turns to Tom solemnly and for the first time speaks in english clearly,
“Pedal, we must go.”
Tom is walking behind as the yellow flower leads. The little blue flower being carried on another’s “bike”,..keeps turning and smiling at him, as if checking if Tom is okay. The forest has eyes all around them.
Literally, the forest has eyes.
There are not only animals eyes staring back at him, but some trees and plants have eyes. In the distance there is a mountain. A large glistening rock, the size of which looks like a football field, protrudes from the top side of the mountain. As they walk/ride. Tom is fascinated by such a large rock and wondering how on earth it could have come to be at such a state at the top of a mountain.
In his distraction he does not notice the flowers stop.
A giant, tree trunk of a foot almost steps on him. A creature larger than a three story building is crossing their path. It looks one part fleshy and one part tree bark. The yellow flower speaks to Tom, his leaf placed on Tom’s knee.
The behemoth is followed by many little gecko-insect creatures chasing it. There is nothing that resembles home for Tom. He, again wonders if he is just existing in a coma or a dream somewhere in his bedroom back at home.
As they come around a bend on the hill, Tom again sees the rock in the mountain. He realizes it is not a rock, but a ship. It is a large, carved spaceship.
In the distance there comes a roar, much like a lion, yet the flowers seem unphased.
As they continue down the curved path around the side of a hill, the sun is setting but with lights in the distance. It is a glow from a city made out of stone, plants and filled with bioluminescence.
“Pedal?” the Yellow one calls his name. Tom has clearly realized this is the name by which he will be called by them. He walks up next to the bicycling flower.
Gesturing to himself, “Tom.”
The small flower looks up at him.
“Story you need learn. You learn when we return, but Gootsy tell…” (he refers to himself) … …some”
“Parks burn loud. Pakum too when bombs blow up. Humanes make bad gone. Poppa fly down take humanes.”
Tom looks at him and whispers, mouthing out what he thought he just said ..”’take humanes’?”
Tom’s eyes fill up with frustration. The small blue flower seeing his eyes, taps Tom on the leg and wipes his pedal across his face. Then pats his mouth. Tom realizes he is telling him to stay quiet. So Tom gestures the same back to acknowledge. The little blue guy points to himself and then at Tom.
“Pedal” then back at himself “Winkle”
Thank God for Ithaca College Speech Communications…
On a conference call that I was asked to sit in on about “social tv, transmedia and the coming convergence’…
Some “transmedia expert” (who will go nameless)… is discussing “how transmedia is the next big thing” and a story experience that a team that he works on created. Anonymously I try not to insult but… …A story experience that is frankly a lot of work…and fairly gimmicky for the audience. Same old, same old mistakes. oof.
So I feel the need to type this (same old rote speech I have been saying to the Hyv and Cubers for 7? years now).
And not get in an argument on the phone with someone who is just trying to make a living at being an expert on the next big idea because that’s his “hook”.
These experts are still ignoring the fact that the same “new transmedia philosophy” was used in projects from the beginning of Hollywood… like when Snow White premiered in 1938 with a simultaneous comic strip tie in, store “hunts”, musical sing-alongs, ancillary books about the dwarves and the Queen.. and a doll collection, that had children write in their wishes for the Prince and Snow White.
Transmedia is an over thought analysis and use of ancillary markets of a story that have been done forever, just under a different (albeit less taut proximity). Transmedia is still inherently about separate pieces that inherently are used for marketing because they really are just expanding audience reach by “trans”ing the media across platforms. rather then realizing the platforms have become one… layered and overlapped.
With storycube structure, you truly have to think differently about media on a grammatical level.
On an object and sense level.
It is the difference between running down a hill, then grabbing poles while you shift your hips and then jumping on a sled, not really done in one flow… ..and just skiing. The difference between doing gymnastics, surfing and skiing… and being a snowboard X-games tube expert.
The architecture of the movement has to change on a granular level to be singular. Transitions, if they are there, have to be purposeful whenever possible.
So… we need to change the grammar, flow and how we create.
Just as we have when we went from folklore around a firepit.. …and cave drawings… ..to producing television, choosing melodies and writing songs… and printing books.
A paragraph does not always work in a film.
Just as a location line does not work in a poem.
We now have a channel that is converged. Transmedia existed for separate channels & almost always for marketing purposes. Or for some artistic gimmick. Yes, we now have a channel that is not only convereged, but pervasive. (AR is about to take that even further). Needing a story/narrative that is thick, reactive, ultimately never finished and has the ability to become parts or singular. The cognizant and impulsive flow of the receiver (that is the reponsibility of the narrator/cuber) can not ride on just old formats of grammar or separated platforms & structure of traditional media forms,
…and it also can not be created (yet) without understanding and evolving ALL of those forms into one.
All transmedia seems to be doing …is the same things that have been done for decades. Only now they have moved them closer to each other. What needs to happen is that we stop talking about attaching or crossing forms and look for the progeny of breeding those forms. If you breed a film and a game… it is like parents… you don’t have pieces of each that you can clearly identify by a separation line between characteristics in the child. You see echoes of each in the child. There is no “trans” …there is only shadows in a singular flow.
I know it is hard to grasp… but..