Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Paradox

As with Science for Writers, the Vocab Builder series is on hold until after my January exams are over. But as I promised I will still be blogging, only not taking 2 hours to write a post!

I still haven't started writing my Christmas Short, hence the face-palm. My problem is although I have the characters, I have one major plot hole. And it's to do with time travel, hence the sci-fi reference.

It reminds me why I haven't written a story with time travel before. There are just too many damn paradoxes to contend with. But, it is a necessity for the character arc and to give the Joe's evil wife her comeuppance.

The issue is how I want time travel to be used in the story. It needs the character to either replace his old self or interact with him. Problem is after he does this the character has no need to travel into the past to interfere with events. I originally thought of shrugging the problem off with this exchange:

"But how can I have changed the past? It makes no sense," he asked.

"I'm Santa, it doesn't have to make sense."

But I thought I'd be doing a disservice to the reader were I to do this. Also I would be hypocritical just to ignore any scientific explanation I can come up with as I write Science for Writers. So, I came to the conclusion that I must come up with some fictional science that makes sense and doesn't contradict itself. Why fictional? you ask. Well time travel on this level with this kind of interaction is almost 100% unlikely to ever happen as the laws of physics would prohibit it. However, so long as my 'science' doesn't require the reader to think too hard and lose the plot then I can make it up.

An idea I had was that a temporal loop is formed after the interaction occurs. This is a looping of the altered event proceeded by the past event that happened after. Essentially imagine you slipped on a banana and were laughed at. You go back in time and take part in the past by avoiding the banana peel. Then you split into two. One version is a you that can walk away and live life. The other version is a temporal loop which forever avoids the banana peel. After avoiding the banana peel this temporal you is programmed to go back to the time machine and travel back to do it again. After a loop has formed you have five seconds to run away before it becomes impossible to interact with the loop. After this happens any part of the world directly involved in you avoiding the banana peel and walking to the time machine is inaccessible.

This kind of explains it, but I want a temporal void in the middle of this loop where an observer can watch but not interact or escape. But how do you get them into the void if the loop is inaccessible? This is the current problem I'm figuring out.

And did I mention that this time travel bit, although mentioned throughout, will likely take place in the last 750-1000 words?


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