Monday, June 18, 2012

Collective Brainstorming: a conversation about an ancient people who immigrate to a new land.

This is the 3rd post in a series about collective brainstorming.

The following is a conversation between @CFSpotlight and myself concerning the questions I raised in the second part of this series. I tried to copy and paste it into a readable script. Twitter conversations aren't always so fluid, after all.


@CFSpotlight — Well, the first thing that comes to mind for me is how they got there. I'm assuming by boat. So they either had similar goals and went as a group to accomplish that. Otherwise, some were forced to go, which would be expensive, so you'd need a good reason to go to that expense. (ex. slave labor, exiling people you won't just kill, ect.)

@MasqCrew — That's my thinking. I picture simple viking type vessels.

@CFSpotlight — Generally, travel is going to be long and difficult, so most of the travelers would be youngish, I would think.

@MasqCrew — Some ancient people did have knowledge that allowed them to live longer but it was the exception, not the rule. Young by our standards, for sure. Say no one over 50 since that's where life expectancy would probably be anyway.

Distance on water doesn't have to be the Atlantic. English channel size would be plenty especially if characters have dealings with those they split up with. Cause for conflict later in the saga.

@CFSpotlight — Historically, I think unless they brought their previous gov't with them (prince, governor, ect) didn't the captain rule? Even after reaching the new land?

@MasqCrew — Families would have a patriarch like Abraham. Tribes might have a tribe leader. Or you could do something else entirely. This would also be influenced by how the group is related: military vs. families vs. friends.

@CFSpotlight — And you'd need a good number of people, with various talents, to establish a colony.Preferably young couples who'll make babies :)

@MasqCrew — Perhaps if technology has advanced to a certain level. Otherwise simple survival skills are plenty. Rest can be learned later.

@CFSpotlight — My guess is that you'd want a genetic variety. (Or at least avoid incest) if their plan was to make a new home land, so probably not just a small group of families. That's my guess.

@MasqCrew — Yes, let's place it after the proverbial, biblical incestal period. How many would you say are in the group?

@CFSpotlight — Straight up military would likely have few females, and not be a good start for a civilization, either. So maybe the tribe idea?

@MasqCrew — I like the tribe idea. Another possibility would be that another group of people are met in the new land who eventually intermarry.

@CFSpotlight — Right, or married into a native population. Probably would load up a boat with as many as it would carry. Just one boat? Or more than one?

@MasqCrew — From pics online, I would say the boats probably wouldn't hold more than 20, so maybe a couple boats.

@CFSpotlight — OK, so not counting kids and elders brought along, you'd probably want a 'breeding population' of say, at least 10 couples I think.

@MasqCrew — Yeah, that sounds like a good number. Or a few more so you can kill off a few.

@CFSpotlight — Right. The more trade and interaction, the fewer you'd need initially. But to have a settlement, I think around 10 couples at min. Wouldn't want to go too large initially until you know how well the resources will provide for settlers.

@MasqCrew — Unless you start the story once a scouting team has already come back and reported.

@CFSpotlight — So maybe no more than 30 couples I wouldn't think. Just my guess.

@MasqCrew — That could be a max for two boats. Need to leave room for supplies.

@CFSpotlight — If they knew something of the place they were going, and knew it would be relatively safe (from animals, natives, weather) could go with the smaller number of people.The more threats, the more people you would want for 'protection in numbers' kind of thing.

@MasqCrew — As U can tell, I'm brainstorming in general, not for a particular story idea. Don't know what I'll go with if I actually do it.

@CFSpotlight — This has been fun! Gotta go for now. Hope this brainstorming helps. :) Good night!

I would love to hear your thoughts on our conversation or about the project in general. You may leave a comment or contact me through Twitter.

Remember: I'm more than willing to help you brainstorm for one of your stories as well.

The one question we didn't address was technology. That will be the next part in this series. Stay tuned.

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