Friday, October 26, 2012

Friday Q & A

M Doty took some time today to answer your questions about Surviving High School, Cause of Death, and the writing team! 

First, a note from M:

Thanks to everyone for the great questions. Before we get started, I have to say one thing. There’s no way I’m going to spoil future events by telling you which couples will get together or whether Sam will ever find true love! Those are questions that will get answered in due time. For now, here are some answers to your other questions.

Q: Hey M! I was wondering, because of the book and Sarah's death... If Sarah would've won the election to be President, would that have changed anything?

A: Great question! If Sara had won the election, it wouldn’t have changed the fact that she’d die over the course of the summer—that was something we had to do to stay consistent with the Surviving High School novel. That said, it would have meant having yet ANOTHER secret Sara was keeping from Emily and her family. It might also have led to a bit more soul searching for whoever was taking over her position in The Storm: Part 2. You can imagine that Taylor’s speech might have been slightly different if she was taking over for Sara at the time.

Writer Fact: Each of the writers picked a different candidate to root for.

Q: Is there ever a disagreement between writers on the game on whether which couple should be canon?

A: Writing team meetings often start with a brainstorm where a lot of ideas, good and bad, go up on a whiteboard for people to debate. Believe me, some unusual pairings have been suggested. Usually, what happens is that someone makes an impassioned plea for a couple to get together or break up and then gradually convinces the rest of us that it’ll make for a good story. I personally had doubts about Colt and Denni at first, for example, but the rest of the team convinced me it was a good idea, and I ended up really liking the story of them getting together (even if I do feel bad for Sam.)

Writer Fact: In addition to the masquerade mask, Denni has also been a cowgirl for Halloween

Q: Is Kimi Chen related to Amy Chen from CoD?

A: Awesome that you noticed their shared last name! I can’t comment specifically for now, but a Kimi and Amy crossover story sounds like a lot of fun.

Q: Will we ever play as Kimi?

A: Kimi fans have a lot to look forward to. We’ll definitely give you the chance to play as Kimi in future episodes. She’ll also be the main character of the second Surviving High School book: How to be a Star, which will be coming out in May of 2013!

Writer Fact: Paige was originally introduced to the SHS world as Sam's troublemaking friend from the all-girls boarding school, Monarch Prep.

Q: And last question, how do you pronounce Paige's name?

When I was younger, I played a game called Final Fantasy II, whose protagonist was a warrior named “Cecil.” In my mind, I pronounced this as rhyming with “diesel.” Later, a friend told me I was an idiot and that it was actually pronounced a different way, as if it rhymed with “vessel.” At this point, I think we were BOTH right. The beauty of having a text based game is that you pronounce things however you want in your own mind. 

To ask M a question for next time, go to M Doty's Facebook page.

Monday, October 15, 2012

The SHS Update Extravaganza!

With all that's been going on for Surviving High School--new characters, new art, new season--M. Doty caught up with one of the writers, Doc, to hear his take on the new developments!

Writer Fact: We were dying to see what was under Zoe's bangs.

MD: There have been a lot of big changes in the SHS world. How do you feel about the change in the cast, the art, and the world?

D: Personally, I think the changes are an improvement. I liked our original art style, but getting art from that artist unfortunately is no longer an option. As for the new art, I love it. I think it's more expressive. Plus, who doesn't like finally getting to see Zoe's other eye?!

MD: Is there anyone in the cast that you miss writing for?

D: Yes and no. I've always liked writing for Howard, and luckily I don't think we'll see him disappear. The thing about SHS is for the most part the cast members never REALLY go away. They just kind of fade into the sunset. And I'm really enjoying the new cast as well. We've had a really nice cast for a long time (with the exception of Jessica). Howard and Zoe were always really sweet to each other and everyone around them. It's nice to finally have someone like Paige in the cast, someone who's willing to insult people and say outrageous things.

MD: Paige has long been a fan favorite. It was nice to see her transfer to the school and finally join the cast full time. On our facebook page, lots of people are talking about Owen and Paige. Why do you think people are so interested in seeing that combination?

D: Well, Paige has always been an intriguing character. She's a mean girl, but she also has had a tough time, which I think makes it easy to get why she is the way she is. Owen is also very deep and complex. It feels like he pulls out some of what makes her human. Best of all, they're just so simultaneously repulsed and attracted to each other... It makes for what we hope is a really fun read!