1 May 2021 - 11:00 am

Writers’ Asylum: Superpowered: Prologue

Girl with afro playing superhero
Image by rawpixel.com

Welcome to the Asylum! It’s time to close the doors, settle into your seat, and get ready to don a cape. I hope you’re all refreshed and ready to go.

Today, we’re exploring the realm of superpowers. Through a series of five challenges, we’ll be working through the story of a single character. Each challenge will be an hour long or up to a thousand words, whichever you reach first. Each challenge will also have a bonus element, for those looking for an extra way to push themselves. There are scheduled breaks between challenges for refreshments and lunch, so don’t worry, you won’t have to be superhuman to get through today. The only caveat in these challenges is that your main character must survive to the last challenge

First of all, let’s figure out who we’re each writing about today. In a moment, you’ll have the opportunity to make some notes before the first challenge begins. Let’s start with some prompts for you.

The world we’re writing in has superpowers. Some might use them for good, some for personal gain, some for more nefarious purposes, and maybe some for all of the above. Take a moment to think about how your world handles these people. Are they accepted? Regulated? Reviled? Do they work within the law, outside of it, or above it? Are they out and proud, or forced to live in secret, or somewhere in between? Are superpowers just a part of everyday life? How common are they?

Next, let’s consider where these superpowers come from. Is there a scientific reason for their occurrence? Is it natural or manmade? Magical, religious, or mystical? Technological? Accidental? Alien or otherworldy? How does someone get these abilities, and at what point in their life? Is there only one way, one path, or many? 

Now think about one person who has superpowers. Give them a name and decide how and where they grew up. Family, or none? How did they do at school and what were their aspirations? Was their life ever ‘normal’? Where does their moral compass tend to point them?

What abilities does this person have? Is it an expression of the type of person they are, or counter to it? What are the limits of this ability or set of abilities? What can this person not do? What are the downsides to this ability, and does it come with any specific weaknesses? How does it complicate their everyday life?

Take a moment to make a few notes about who this person is and what they can do. The first challenge starts in just a few minutes. 

Let’s get started!

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