How Much Money could a One Line Product Generate?
More than the grosses, it was the revenue that the movie generated that made The Force Awakens so profitable. And here is the magic- there was no storyline in this movie in comparison to Star Wars. In fact, there wasn’t even a villain. It was a simple underdog story with an outstanding cast, all of which were household names. But because they were household names, there was no need for an elaborate storytelling process to explain their characters and how they fit into the story. And that is how you make money- [without a] storyline.
Star Wars was a movie of two halves. There was the first half, which was good- and then there was the second half of the movie, which was bad, but did not hurt the brand to any significant degree because of the previous good half. And here is where it gets interesting- all three Star Wars movies have grossed more than $5 billion globally. But the second half of the movie in all three of these movies does not perform well in comparison to the first half.
And here is where it becomes interesting again- All three movies have grossed more than $5 billion worldwide. Do you see any pattern here? In fact, there is a pattern.
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The power of fan culture only truly became clear to me when I tried to create my own short story series. I had the idea for the most interactive story ever- the reader would influence both the plot and conclusion of each line of dialogue. I believed that no author would be able to write a story that kept the flow as steady and intense as mine did. But I got stumped when it came to choosing a plot proper- there was nothing short of fantasy that I could use. So I looked to manga, which had been demonstrating the power of simplicity time and time again in recent years. The most popular author in Japan- Eiichiro Oda- had proven that you could get away with just one plotline, and one villain, without sacrificing quality by simplifying his storytelling process to just a few pages every week. And the same applied to anime, with each episode’s quick “battle conclusion ending” and “what’ll happen next?” cliffhanger.
I decided to follow their examples and make my story so simple that it would be completed within a month- and I was sure that I had done exactly what was required of me- I created a protagonist who would threaten all life on Earth, with his only weakness being either the protagonist or his friend. I created a fair number of supporting characters and fleshed out the fight scenes one by one, making sure not to leave them up in the air.
What is it that makes us write?
How many of you have ever stopped to think about what it is that makes you write? Most students know instinctively, but few are able to actually put the answer into words. And I believe that the reason for this is because writing is a combination of selfishness and altruism.
However, I’m not just talking about writers who are making money out of their writing. When I say “writing” I don’t only mean novels, or screenplays, or poetry. I mean it in the widest sense of the word: any kind of text that is created with words on paper. This can include things like letters, essays, fanfic stories, graffiti and even websites that are just short messages to others which aren’t meant to be published anywhere other than on the internet itself. In fact, even if people aren’t making money out of writing, I consider it part of our society that has become more and more dependent on writing in order to go about our daily business.
I know how to write but I just don’t know what I want to say…
too much empathy. It is selfish because we want to express our deepest, darkest thoughts and feelings in our writing. But at the same time, it is also too much empathy because we want others to look at us while they read what we write and say “Wow that was so honest. You have no idea what you’re writing about but in your very words, you’re revealing that you feel it.” And when they say that, we want to shout out “The reason I don’t know what I’m writing about is because I didn’t know how to express myself!” But we still want them to like our work, because at the end of the day, we are a writer. We write stories and evoke emotions in people. We want them to react to our work and because of that, we can’t hold back when it comes to writing.
I’ve been working on a web novel lately, and I’m trying to come to terms with myself because I don’t have the guts to kill off the main character. But at the same time, I didn’t want to write him out of my story because that would feel like writing myself out.