Chekov

"If theres a gun in the first act, it must go off later in the play"

Is this true or literal bullshit?
I mean if there is a beautiful butt in my book does this mean it needs to fart?

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  1. 4 months ago
    Anonymous

    Yes, the butt must indeed do something if you mention it.
    (verification not required)

    • 4 months ago
      Anonymous

      >if you mention it

      This, basically. The entire point of Chekov's Gun is that you do not want to waste the audience's time with pointless information. Therefore, any information you include must in some way be relevant to the overall plot.

      Ergo, if you are going to bother mentioning that there is a gun involved in your story, that gun had better be put to use later on in the story or you've just wasted our time with pointless information.

      The evil twin of Chekov's Gun is the Shaggy Dog Story, a long sequence of details that ultimately has no point and no relevance to the plot. Shaggy Dog Stories are hated.

      • 4 months ago
        Anonymous

        Refuted by Ulillillia.

        • 4 months ago
          Anonymous

          No way someone with that name refutes anything
          (verification not required)

          • 4 months ago
            Anonymous

            I've read the book too, it's an interesting bit of outsider literature structured like a video game. The writer Ulillillia is autistic, and his writing definitely reflects that. Effectively, you can put as much detail into something as you'd like, but the details don't have to imply anything down the line. We learn a ton of biographical details of the characters in the story, but that never comes into play as the story progresses. It helps with the worldbuilding and the mental imagery, but it isn't called upon later to move the plot forward

          • 4 months ago
            Anonymous

            I don't think he's actually autistic. He has next level OCD.

          • 4 months ago
            Anonymous

            >He has next level OCD
            That's possible, but he talks about it as autism a lot. He has a documentary on him, which is really good (just skip the boring chunk about the Minot flood in the middle of it)

            Interesting but since you mentioned his autism, that sounds like a small spergout. lol.

            He's just very organized, kind of like a Mirror Universe Chris Chan. Instead of investing all his energy into chasing ass, playing video games and creating a derivative comic based on his life experience, Ulillillia invests all his energy into creating utterly original works

          • 4 months ago
            Anonymous

            Never mind, I just deboonked my post, it is OCD.

          • 4 months ago
            Anonymous

            Its Autism: Classique. Not any of this neurodivergent stuff, just straight up a sperg.

          • 4 months ago
            Anonymous

            Interesting but since you mentioned his autism, that sounds like a small spergout. lol.

      • 4 months ago
        Anonymous

        It's not that the gun necessarily needs to go off or the butt needs to fart, but they need to serve a purpose.
        The gun could later become incriminating evidence, and the lady bottoms could have seduced the protagonist.
        Each element of your story should serve a purpose.

  2. 4 months ago
    Anonymous

    no, he was very specifically talking about guns. it doesn't work with anything else

  3. 4 months ago
    Anonymous

    I've found that it's a good principle to keep in mind when writing stories. It's not just about cutting things; it also encourages you to make connections between all the random details you threw down on the page in your first draft. It helps make things feel really tightly and organically knitted together, or like a nicely whirring machine.

    If you want to read more about this, I recommend George Saunders's book A Swim in a Pond in the Rain, where he analyses stories by Chekhov and other Russian authors from a creative-writing-workshop kind of perspective. He has a version of Chekhov's gun he calls the Ruthless Efficiency Principle.

  4. 4 months ago
    Anonymous

    >stories shouldn't be full of needless extra bullshit
    And the people voluntarily going on the literature board have to unironically ask what he meant by this

    • 4 months ago
      Anonymous

      The number one thing that I aggressively hate about books is how they're full of pointless shit. It does not create extra depth.
      I dont want to know what kind of rug the main character has on their floor
      I cant believe famous writers do this "maximalism" shit too.

      • 4 months ago
        Anonymous

        That's kind of what writing is, though. It's the journey, dude, not the destination.

        It's like transferring your consciousness into this other weird form for the span of 300 pages, which includes experiencing rugs, and the specific way in which that text-consciousness experiences rugs.

        If you're listening to a song, you don't turn it off the first time the chorus repeats; you realise you're there for the experience, not just extract the note information.

        If you're hanging out with a friend, you don't constantly say, 'Let's cut the banter and get down to the key items on our agenda.' And having a business meeting is to hanging out with a friend as reading a Wikipedia plot synopsis is to reading a book.

        • 4 months ago
          Anonymous

          I wrote a 200-page novel and there's nothing useless in it. Everything is tied to something important to the story. I dont want to waste the reader's time in a time where we watch 5-second tiktok videos and feel they werent fast-paced enough.

          • 4 months ago
            Anonymous

            I do generally agree with the principle, as I was trying to get at here

            I've found that it's a good principle to keep in mind when writing stories. It's not just about cutting things; it also encourages you to make connections between all the random details you threw down on the page in your first draft. It helps make things feel really tightly and organically knitted together, or like a nicely whirring machine.

            If you want to read more about this, I recommend George Saunders's book A Swim in a Pond in the Rain, where he analyses stories by Chekhov and other Russian authors from a creative-writing-workshop kind of perspective. He has a version of Chekhov's gun he calls the Ruthless Efficiency Principle.

            . But I think there is value in less rigorous writing too. Maybe it's just a difference in styles.

  5. 4 months ago
    Anonymous

    This advice is only about plays. In a play you have very limited time, limited budget, limited capacity to catch details for your audience who will likely only see this once.
    In a book, you can afford to include things that won't immediately be directly plot-essential. Don't be a bore, don't muddy the narrative unnecessarily, but don't feel the need to slavishly and formally "pay off" every single detail just because you mentioned it earlier.

  6. 4 months ago
    Anonymous

    It's not literally true. It's just his approach to writing.

  7. 4 months ago
    Anonymous

    It means don't bring up irrelevant shit just to pad the page, don't count the words, make the words count, etc.

  8. 4 months ago
    Anonymous

    It means be selective in the details you choose to include. Don't mention something if it doesn't add to the story.

  9. 4 months ago
    Anonymous

    Poe took a huge shite on this and wrote a story which a traditional, poetry and a philosophical essay at the same time.

  10. 4 months ago
    Anonymous

    Yeah.
    Even me, a liker of subversive tropes, I felt anger at that star in The neuromancer
    So don’t do it, or if you don’t do it well

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