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Mission Writing Guide

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This article was written by Sedri, and is meant to answer any questions relating to actually writing PPC missions, including creating agents, so we suggest you read this before writing your first mission, and perhaps even before submitting your Permission request.

Please also see also the Guide to the PPC, the FAQ: For Newbies, Posting New Mission Reports, and Trojie's Slash-Sporking Guide if you are interested in writing for the Department of Bad Slash.

Writing a MissionEdit

So let’s say you’ve hung around for a month, gotten to know the Board regulars, and read a good number of existing missions. Now, of course, you want to write one yourself.

How?

First of all, get permission. Everything you need to know is in that article. Read that and then come back, and we will walk you through some of the details.

Please be aware that writing missions is not as easy as it looks. Many people have joined the PPC, waited a month, written a mission or two, and then faded out. Some keep hanging around to chat on the Board, always meaning to write and rarely if ever doing so, while others just vanish entirely. Remember that writing a mission, like any other story, takes quite a bit of time and effort. Of all our members over the past years, only four have met and passed the twenty-five-mission mark set by The Original Series (IndeMaat, Tawaki, and Trojie and Paddlebrains {who usually work as a pair}). The average number of missions per writer is more like four, or maybe five.

Now, we’re not going to scold anyone for this – most of us are guilty of it ourselves – but we want to make sure you know in advance.

That said, it’s now time for the fun bit.

Creating Your Own AgentsEdit

A brief character summary is required for your permission request, but it is always good to flesh out your new characters before you ask for the Permission Givers’ approval. After all, you will (hopefully) be working with them for a very long time.

How many agents can I have? Do I have to have a pair?Edit

No, you can have as many or as few as you like. Some PPCers create different agents to work in various departments, such as Bad Slash or the DMS, while others keep the same agent for every mission they do, and therefore put said agents in the Department of Floaters. You could write solo missions, have one pair of agents, two pairs, a large number that are mixed-and-matched depending on the mission at hand, or co-write a mission with another Boarder, each using one or more of your own agents.

However, there are several reasons why two is the preferred number, at least for writing on your own. For one thing, it’s very hard to keep writing distinct, original characterisations when you have lots of different people – that also makes it hard for anyone reading your missions to keep track of who is whom, and keep their backstories straight. On the other hand, writing an entire mission with only one agent can be boring as well as hard. Pairs of agents are very often polar opposites that drive each other crazy (we usually blame the Flowers for this), and a one-man show, even if it’s a very snarky and witty MST of the badfic, is rarely as much fun as a banter, good-natured or no. Having dialogue between your characters also makes exposition much easier.

I’ve noticed a lot of Boarders go by the same name as one of their agents. Are they meant to be the same person? Can I do that?Edit

If you like, sure. Most of us have one agent who is essentially a caricature of ourselves, and often the backstory of those agents is that they were recruited from the Real World, so as to make the entire thing plausible. Don’t make the mistake of equating Agent with Boarder, though; we like to have fun with our alternate selves, and tend to exaggerate or change them over time. Some, like Agent Trojanhorse, have been warped almost beyond recognition.

Can I give my agent a special race / talent / power / weapon?Edit

Strictly speaking, yes, but be careful. As said in the permission article, we do not want them to become Sues or Stus.

Plenty of PPC agents have powers, talents, or belong to a magical race because they were recruited from badfics. This can make mission writing a lot of fun; however, the risk is that if you give your agent too many powers, it makes it too easy for them to do their jobs. Half the humour involved here is the challenge of completing a mission without being caught by Sues or possessed canon characters, and if they all could just walk in and snap their fingers to kill the Sue / exorcise the possessing wraith / untangle the crossover, it wouldn’t be any fun at all.

Also, the Flowers tend not to like having underlings with that level of power.

This doesn’t mean that powers are necessarily bad. Force-users from Star Wars, for instance, are perfectly canonical, and being a Jedi (or a Sith) does not automatically mean the agent is boring – Rilwen Shadowflame, for instance, uses the Force as a weapon, but her missions are still challenging and fun to read.

As for weapons, the same principles apply. Almost all agents use some sort of weapon, be it a knife, gun, bow, wand, or fist. Some of the more interesting choices include a sledgehammer, lightsabers, an eight-pound bell (for exorcisms, but a useful blunt object), and an ice pick. Also remember that a weapon must be appropriate for the continuum the mission is in; a lightsaber is fine for killing a Star Wars Sue, but the agent will have to make do with knives or bows should they be assigned a Lord of the Rings mission.

You’ll note, however, that none of these tools will win the day without a great deal of work on the part of the wielder. Agents do not use big explosives, uncanonical spells or technology, mind control, or any vaguely god-like powers. If your agent is a Time Lord out of Doctor Who or a Q out of Star Trek, their powers will have to be watered down immensely, or removed altogether (bear in mind that an ex-Q raging about how they’d be able to get this done if only they still had their old powers could be incredibly funny). One should also note that the agent's powers probably won't work while in disguise anyway.

Finally, mind that your agent’s personality doesn’t get too uppity. No one should be nonchalant on this job; we often write missions because the badfic is so bad we get angry, and then the writing is cathartic as well as funny. If, for example, your agent is entirely unfazed by even the worst badfic, they’re no fun to read, and you’ll probably be asked to change it before getting permission.

Of course, any of these ideas can be done well, but it takes practice. If you’re heart-set on your agent having a particular trait or skill or power, why not start out by writing a fairly normal character (insofar as any agent can be normal), and then after a few missions, actively show them changing, or toss them and write a new one? No one’s stopping you. All they need to have is fully developed personalities.

The oldbie who read my agent profiles said they’re too flat. What gives? I thought you didn’t want super-special agents?Edit

We don’t, but there’s such a thing as going too far in the other direction. Your agents still have to carry the story, and for that they have to be interesting. Not shocking, just interesting. Every person has a past, experiences which have shaped them – unless, of course, they are recruited bit characters, in which case their entire history is dictated by the story they came from (an example, if I may, is Agent Iza, whose lack of properly written background means she is in the process of discovering her own personality, a quirk which in itself leads to a lot of laughs).

Some questions to ask yourself are: Where do they come from? If they are a reformed badfic writer, what sort of fics did they once write and how did they come to realise it was horrible? How did they get to the PPC from World One? If they are recruited from fics, what kind of fic did they come from? What fandom? What aspects of PPC life (or that of other fandoms they may work in) would strike them as absurd, or what (wrong) assumptions would they make? What lingering effects do they struggle with from being ‘born’ in a badfic? In short, what are their main characteristics or personality quirks?

Can I say my agent went to an OFU even if I didn’t officially register them when the fic was being written? What about if they come from a badfic? Does it have to be a real badfic?Edit

To the first: Yes. To the second: No, you can conjure it out of thin air if you really want to, but you might get a better agent if they come from an actual badfic.

I got permission a while ago to write an agent for the DMS, but now Bad Slash looks more interesting. Can I change their assignment?Edit

Of course. Many agents bounce around at will if they find they can’t take a particular sort of badfic any longer, or if the Flowers reassign them (or they just go Freelance, or to the Department of Floaters). You don’t need permission to do this, or even mention it to the community; they’re your agents, and you have free reign.

Are there rules for numbering RCs?Edit

Yes. Letters are reserved for Jay and Acacia, but you can have letters in the RC number, as long as it’s not the first character. You can use decimals, single digits, or a number in the tens of thousands, as long as it’s not already taken. The full list can be found here or here.

How can I decorate my RC? What about the front door?Edit

There are absolutely no rules, besides pragmatic ones, and even they tend to be weak when it’s pointed out that HQ’s architecture is notoriously wonky. Every RC must have a console, and there is generally a bathroom, but everything else is up to the agents. Some RCs are tiny and cramped, but others seem to be suites with multiple bedrooms (probably attained through extensive use of plotholes, or just knocking out interior walls). Some agents keep only their mission tools, canon sources, and a few spare clothes stored there, while others acknowledge that they’re going to spend the rest of their natural lives in that room and hoard things, including furniture, accordingly.

Just remember that the Ironic Overpower tends to make consoles BEEP! at the very moment an agent starts to get comfortable.

As for the front door, many are plain, but others have plaques or nameplates indicating who lives inside, or at least the room number. Nothing forbids an agent from adding to that with other decorations.

How soundproof is an RC?Edit

Interesting question. Console BEEP!s have certainly been audible from beyond the doors on at least one occasion, but loud music in one room bothering someone trying to sleep in another doesn’t tend to be much of an issue. HQ is weird. You could probably get away with anything, including having your agents soundproof the place themselves, though the Laws of Narrative Comedy may choose to override that. Specifics like these are not often nailed down.

What Kind of Things Can I PPC?Edit

As we all know, there’s a lot of badfic out there; far, far more than can be dealt with. The upside of this is that we can all pick and choose our missions, although our agents have to deal with whatever we (or the Flowers, convenient scapegoats that they are) choose to throw at them. However, there are a few limits.

Basically, any original work published and accessible by the public, whether on film, in text, on radio, or whatever, is a published canon. Parodies also count, even though they work somewhat differently. No published canon can be PPCed – we protect the plot continuum, regardless of our own opinions of the story. Therefore, despite the fact that stories such as Twilight and the The Inheritance Cycle are reviled by many PPCers, we cannot send our agents into the canon stories, only the badfics written for them. Thankfully, no one has to take missions for a fandom they don’t like.

What about adaptations, or expanded or alternate works someone other than the author made? They’re not “original” published works.Edit

No, but they’re still published, and therefore can have a fanfiction following of their own. For instance, the Peter Jackson film adaptations of Lord of the Rings made several major changes from the original book, enough so that a fanfic based on those versions (called the movieverse) would be noticeably different from one based on the bookverse. It’s still an established canon.

As a side note, the line between various versions of a canon is a question up for debate. For example, the musical Wicked was adapted from a book of the same name, which was in turn partly based on L Frank Baum’s original Oz book series and partly on the 1939 film adaptation starring Judy Garland. These four versions all have many major overlapping elements, but also many major clashes. When PPCing a story with multiple possible ‘verses, an agent must bear in mind that just because the badfic author didn’t use the version of canon they prefer does not mean they can be charged for it. If it’s canonical somewhere, it’s allowed.

The same applies for alternate works such as Lost in Austen, a recent television series depicting a Modern Girl who lands in (and messes up) Pride & Prejudice – which is legally allowed, as Austen’s work is old enough to be out of copyright. As much as most PPCers hate this (and we do hate it; you can see our outraged reactions on this thread), there’s nothing we can do about it.

Are we allowed to PPC original badfic? That’s not published.Edit

Sorry, no. In that case, the badfic is the plot continuum. We generally have nothing to do with those stories at all.

What about parodies, crackfics, or fics that have been written on request/for a challenge?Edit

In most cases, it'd probably be in good taste to leave them alone. After all, they're clearly not meant to be taken seriously in the first place, and if a writer has created something specifically because someone asked for it, it would be rather rude to criticise them for doing so, wouldn't it? We try to be nice. That said, some fics are awful regardless of origin, and in the case of parodies sometimes it's almost impossible to tell that something is a parody. Use your best judgement.

What about fandoms whose authors don't approve of fanfic at all?Edit

We leave them completely alone. A PPC mission is still, essentially, a fanfic, and how can we criticise someone for failing to respect an author's wishes if we don't do so ourselves?

When an author bans fanfiction from his works, the world he creates is called a Quarantined Continuum.

For reference, the following authors have specifically requested that no fanfic be written about their works:

  • Anne Bishop
  • P.N. Elrod
  • Raymond Feist
  • Jasper Fforde
  • Diana Gabaldon
  • Terry Goodkind
  • Laurell K. Hamilton
  • Robin Hobb
  • George R. R. Martin
  • Dennis L. McKiernan
  • Robin McKinley
  • Irene Radford
  • Anne Rice
  • Nora Roberts/J.D. Robb
  • J. R. Ward
  • David Weber
  • Archie Comics

Anne McCaffrey used to be on this list, but has since lifted her ban, provided some rules are followed.

What fandoms does the PPC cover? If you guys hate Twilight and Eragon so much, are we not allowed to PPC badfic for them?Edit

The PPC covers any fandom that needs it. We have specific divisions for Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter just because there’s so much badfic that some agents specialise in those canons, but there are many, many more fandoms being dealt with. On the other hand, there are some lucky continua out there that have virtually no badfic – but we won’t mention which, or the Ironic Overpower might just go about changing that.

You are, of course, allowed to PPC for Twilight and the Inheritance Cycle if you want. We don’t want you to feel like you can’t, or that you’ll be looked down on for it. It is commonly said that many agents aren’t sent into such canons because they can’t be trusted not to kill the canon characters, but if your agents happen to like it, go ahead! Really, go ahead. We encourage it.

How many chapters should a fic have in order to be PPCed?Edit

Length of a fic has nothing to do with its quality; if it’s bad, it’s bad, and that can be illustrated in five thousand words or fifty. While we’re on the subject, you don’t have to make missions a particular length; we encourage you to make it long enough to be worthwhile and illustrate both your characters and the fic’s awfulness, but a novel-length epic for every badfic isn’t much fun either. Play it by ear and just write what feels necessary.

I confess, I once wrote a badfic. It’s really awful. Can I PPC that?Edit

Yes. It’s been done before, and there are probably very few PPCers who don’t have at least one such skeleton in their closets, so don’t feel bad about it, either. That you can look back now and recognise your mistakes – with good humour, no less! – is laudable. This is also a particularly fun thing to do if one of your agents is essentially your fictional self, and remembers having written the fic before being recruited.

Can I PPC AUs, given that they’re not meant to be the same as canon?Edit

Yes. Bad writing is bad writing; being an alternate universe doesn’t (automatically) excuse out-of-character behaviour, and it certainly doesn’t excuse space-time distortions, bad biology, punctuation abuse, or the like.

What about oddly formatted stories, like first person or epistolary works?Edit

Yes, they’re fine, though you may need (or want) to deal with the odd style within your mission.

For first- or second-person fics, the Department of Sufficiently Advanced Technology has created a handy little device known as a crash dummy, which acts as a stand-in for the point-of-view character, allowing agents to walk around as normal without having the authorial influence forced upon them. Written formats such as diaries can be dealt with in whatever way is most suitable for your mission; have the agents spend the entire time reading the text, if you want, but that’s a bit dull. Remember, the aim is to be entertaining, so if you can make a funny situation out of it, do so. If we don’t have a useful method for handling your particular badfic, make one up.

I’ve found a badfic that’s almost entirely made up of original characters, descendants of canon characters. Do I leave that alone?Edit

It’s still a canon world, so you can charge for anything that breaks the laws of the canon. Good OCs exist, of course, and for your sake I hope these qualify, but if they claim to be descendants of a canon character who most definitely had no children, then it’s a charge, albeit not necessarily a big one. If it’s obviously a bad story, and you can name reasons why, then you can PPC it. If not, maybe you should leave it alone and find something worse to deal with.

The badfic I want to spork isn’t finished. What do I do?Edit

There are a lot of unfinished fics around, some that are works-in-progress, some abandoned. You can still PPC it. If the author writes more afterwards, you can PPC later chapters individually (Trojie and Pads did this several times with the Legendary Badfic for The Land Before Time, "Littlefoot x Cera"), or just ignore it – if it wouldn’t be funny to keep going, ignore it.

Just know that you cannot charge for something that hasn’t actually happened in a badfic, even if it’s obvious that it was going to.

What if the author took the badfic down before I finished my mission?Edit

Then you have a choice: you can either scrap the mission, finish it anyway and post a note about how it’s been removed, or do what Jay and Acacia did in the Original Series and make a little drama about them having to rush out before they were deleted along with the fic.

As a matter of courtesy, if the author took down their work because they realised how bad it was, it’s generally considered poor form to spork it anyway.

Do I tell the badfic author that I’m PPCing their fic? Aren’t they supposed to take down the story or something?Edit

NO.

For all the fun we have, we don’t actually police the fandom, and we cannot tell people what to do. Most of these badfics are sporked without the original author ever knowing about it, and generally, it’s better that they don’t. We don’t want to start a flame war, and why hurt their feelings if we don’t have to? Showing someone that their work has been mocked so thoroughly rarely results in a positive reaction. Some PPCers do choose to politely inform the badfic author, particularly if they know the person would have a laugh rather than burst into tears, but most don’t.

Also, you never tell an author to stop writing, or take down their stories; all we can do is give them constructively critical feedback. We try to be nice people, see.

Wow, you’re picky. Anything else I shouldn’t pick for a PPC mission?Edit

Well, not every badfic is worth the time it takes to spork. Stop and ask yourself: What’s the point of sporking this fic? Yes, there are crimes against canon, but does that make it a story anyone will want to read?

Of course, going out and picking the most dramatically horrible fics you can find might not be good for your agent’s sanity, either. Or your own. And too many terrible fics can become monotonous after a while.

Yes, I suppose this is getting rather picky, but at the end of the day, it’s still your choice, and we’re just giving advice.

For a list of perfectly sporkable works, check out the Unclaimed Badfic page.

Okay, So You’ve Found a Badfic. Now What?Edit

Mission writing doesn’t have any set rules or formulae, but it can also be daunting to just start, so here’s a rough outline that’s common to most missions, which you can use as a blueprint until you feel more confident:

Typical Mission OutlineEdit

  1. The agents are in their RC (or a Flower’s office, or a friend’s RC, or just somewhere in HQ), and trying to have what passes as “relaxation time.” We get a bit of character exposition or development before…
  2. BEEEEEEP! The console goes off: a mission awaits. One or both partners will read the Intelligence report while the other gathers up the tools they will need. Depending on the content of the badfic and the particular peeves or Lust Objects of the agent, this may result in shock, outrage, panic, near-homicidal mania, or any combination of the above. Occasionally it results in laughter, but we don’t trust agents that happy (cue the Shifty Eyes).
  3. The agents zap up a shiny portal and enter the fic. Agents are not required to start at the very beginning of the story if there’s nothing charge-worthy happening there. This is done at the writer’s discretion.
  4. Agents take note of any charges they observe and generally get very angry and/or disgusted at the scenes they are forced to witness. Some muffled grumbling about the Flowers is common. Any boring or particularly squicky scenes can be skipped over with the use of a remote activator, unless there are particularly important charges involved, in which case the agents must watch, as failure to include all major charges on the charge list can result in punishment for the agents (namely, being assigned brain-breakingly bad missions). If there is time and place, the agents may choose to eat or sleep in the fic, since they likely won’t have a chance back in their RC.
  5. Once enough charges have been gathered, the agents take action. Exactly what they do is determined by the type of mission and the content of the fic – if there is a Sue, she must be killed; if there is excessive OOCness or bad slash, the canon characters must be exorcised; if it’s a bad crossover, the elements of each Word World must be untangled. It is at this point that the charge list is read out to the accused (namely, the Sue or the possessing wraith), and the wrongs set right. There may be danger in that possessed canon characters (or the OCs) often try to fight the agents – excessive use of PPC technology is encouraged.
  6. Once the continuum has been restored and all uncanonical elements have been removed, the agents return to their RC, possibly feeling satisfied, worn out, revolted, or just in need of a shower. Many missions end with another console BEEP! or a message from a Flower (if either the agents have broken one or more rules or are about to be reassigned).

Some things to remember:

  • Missions are usually written in third-person past tense, often in omniscient third-person just because it’s more fun that way, but sometimes limited form works, too. There is no real reason that missions cannot be written in first person, but few are.
  • While in the badfic, agents usually wear disguises that can temporarily transform them into any species or gender, so as to better blend in with background characters. If the mission is an assassination, agents generally choose to look like something that would plausibly murder a Sue (such as an orc for a Lord of the Rings Sue).
  • Agents are not normally at risk of being seen by canon characters regardless of whether or not they wear a disguise, because the Word World does its best to help its rescuers by shielding them from view (though it can do little if an agent actively draws attention to themselves, such as by screaming in rage or glomping their Lust Object). However, original characters cannot be controlled by canon, so it’s best for assassins to remain beneath the Sue’s notice. This also means that agents on bad slash missions, for example, frequently don’t bother with disguises.
  • Not every charge must be noted down. Every major one, yes, and anything that is repetitive or annoys the agents, but minor mistakes can be skipped as long as there is enough evidence to convict the Sue or possessing wraith in the end. For this same reason, agents do not have to wait until the end of the ‘fic to charge if they have enough evidence that the canon has been "broken."
  • Similarly, not every charge the agents note down has to be mentioned in narrative, but bear in mind that it can be startling to hear new charges announced when the Sue is about to be killed. On the other hand, it can be very boring to hear them twice, especially if the charge lists are long. How you write your mission is up to you.
  • Bit characters and other minor offences can be dealt with as they appear, as long as they’re not needed later in the story, so as to save on the amount of work to be done at the end.
  • Most uncanonical elements that a badfic imposes on canon will disappear on their own once the “anchor” of the author’s influence – the wraith or the Sue, usually – has been vanquished. Agents do not need to go around confiscating every casually-mentioned earring or burning down random forests if they are minor enough (missions in which such places aren’t minor are usually the domain of the Department of Geographical Aberrations, also known as the Pyro Department).
  • As the agents are always technically inside a world made of words, it is possible for them to read the text of the story while on their mission. They do this by letting their eyes drift out of focus while staring at a blank surface, usually the sky or a wall. This allows agents to catch grammar and punctuation charges as well as skim the approaching paragraphs in order to see if there’s anything worthwhile coming up.
  • Various technological gadgets exist to help agents do their job, in ways such as seeing through walls and translating languages at need. Articles describing a number of them can be found here.
  • The gadget used most often is the neuralyzer, filched from the Men In Black continuum. It is used to erase the memories of any canon characters who witnessed the agents in action or who would otherwise remember uncanonical events.
  • Torturing Sues (or anyone else) is forbidden. Yes, even if they really deserve it.

More specific questions are answered in the FAQ: For Newbies, or on the wiki articles for each piece of technology.

At the end of the day, Sues, MPreg, and so on are always defeated by logic, canonical characterisation, and the laws of physics.

One more thing:

  • Sporking is NEVER about the fic's AUTHOR. This point cannot be emphasised enough. Authors of a badfic are not equal to the badfic. Moaning and complaining about the badfic should never turn into insulting the author. It's rude, it's cruel, and it's created far too many dramas already. Leave authors out of it. Don't even mention them in your mission if you can possibly avoid it. Yes, that can be hard. Yes, we used to call the possessing force that makes canon characters OOC "author-wraiths" - they're now called Sue-wraiths (or "slash dwimmerlaiks") for a reason. You can mention the author if you have to (e.g., when complaining about author's notes), but no bad-mouthing them. Aim it at the fic itself. Please. Trust me. It's better that way.

In the words of Techno-Dann, “The point of the PPC isn't to be mythic heroes ridding the world of badfic, or even knight-in-shining-armor types cleaning one 'verse at a time - the point is that the agents are borderline-nutcases doing an impossibly large job one teaspoon-full at a time, with half-broken equipment that never was enough for the job, and working in the most messed up corporate environment that has ever existed. And humor, ostensibly.”

Allow me to repeat: WE ARE HERE TO HAVE FUN.

If you’re not having fun writing the mission, you’re doing something wrong. True, sometimes we PPC badfics so infuriating that sporking them is pure catharsis, but it still has to involve humour. We are not on a mission to systematically spork every badfic we can find. And yes, okay, our agents don’t always have fun, but watching them be miserable in an overblown and comical fashion is funny for us. If your mission consists of nothing but an efficient, effective cleanup of the problem, it’s no fun. Remember that this work is also supposed to be dangerous. If you involve little problems, people bickering, plans backfiring, or equipment malfunctions, it’s fun again – as long as you don’t put in too many. Moderation is always the key.

Also, bear in mind the Rule of Funny.

If you still want to read some more examples before writing missions yourself, browse around to find agents in the department of your choice and follow their links to their missions, or if you feel like being random, go to the main page and take a look at the latest mission releases.

Other Common Mission-Related QuestionsEdit

Where should I post my completed missions?Edit

It’s up to you. LiveJournal or Dreamwidth are common choices, but if you have your own website, feel free to put it there. You can also post directly to our LJ community. FanFiction.Net (known around here as the Pit) is an option, but we don’t suggest it, as the admin is very likely to remove PPC-style stories. Lately, lots of folks have been using Google Docs, though one drawback is that GDocs doesn't come with a home or index page to use as a table of contents for your stories.

But before you post anywhere, find one or more Beta reader(s) and consider their advice.

Wherever you choose to post, make sure you link us to it. Post a link on the Board, and if you use your personal LiveJournal, a link post on the community would be very much appreciated for ease of access and archival purposes. Also, please link your mission from the wiki:

See Posting New Mission Reports for detailed instructions on linking your mission from the wiki.

How do co-writes work?Edit

There are several ways to do it, and the choice of which is up to you and your partner. You could:

  • Have one person write the entire story and give it to the other for checking, though that requires the second author to have a great deal of faith in the first author’s ability to write their agents in-character.
  • Split the story into sections and have each person write certain parts.
  • Meet up on an IM chat and write the story together, line-by-line.
  • Discuss the mission in detail and write the actual story text later, with whatever of the above arrangements.
  • Use the Google Docs method, which seems to be the most effective: both writers must have a Gmail account, but then you can have the text in an online word document that all parties can access and edit (simultaneously, even). Generally, the writers have an IM window open at the same time to discuss ideas, and each take turns to write a few paragraphs.

All that said, good luck! And if you have any further questions, take a look at the FAQ: For Newbies, or just ask on the Board.

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