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November Histories & Chronicles Of The West Indies
Topic Started: Oct 20 2013, 03:23 PM (782 Views)
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fighting the Spanish Armada since Sir Walter Raleigh's time
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“Before the Mast” is officially thirty nine months old! Warm thanks to all the crew, to everybody who has made it possible for our writing community to flourish and for the story to get further!

As per the 1-st of November, statistics show that we have 40 male active characters and 16 female. This ratio is all right, given the focus of our story on adventures at sea! (Some inactive writers being in temporary hiatus, duly announced, had been left in the ship roster and the other lists, while the MIA ones were cleaned; but for the purpose of the statistics, only the writers who have posted in Octomber are counted here. However, if they have posted only with one character out of several they have, all their characters are counted as active.)

Active members: 17
Active characters: 56, out of which:

Pirates = 11
Privateers = 7
English Navy = 11
French Navy = 8
Civilians = 19

The census above and the positions in the ship roster give you a good idea about what ship needs your man the most. The civilians are a bit too many, while the ships are waiting for more crew for the adventures they have ahead.

Bring your characters to fight for the King and crown… or for their own freedom, and we promise you further action, drama and fun for them!

As you already know, we have an ongoing blockade involving the allied Navy ships and the privateers in November and December (which means you have to make up also the Spanish NPCs you are fighting against), and a sitewide masquerade party on a little island in Bahamas to welcome in style the New Year 1720 and to celebrate three years “Before the Mast”. Everybody respectable is invited, as a guest or as a helping hand, and pirates in disguise are welcome to crash the party as long as nobody suspects them to be what they really are. It’s time to interact with the ones your characters wouldn’t normally, and it’s time to unleash some confusions and intrigues as well!

Remember, our story can get as epic and interesting as you want to contribute to writing it!

…And, speaking about keeping writing consistently, we are launching a

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Yes, usually the contests were announced at the beginning of December. While we’ll have a couple of traditional ones in December too, the ones lasting for 2 months are announced now. And given that, according to the announcement below, we are starting 1720’s volume of the story on a new page - on jcink, which allows for different points and awards… the first points will be earned here and reported there.

1. Thread completion contest – each completed thread in the period 1 November – 20 December will earn all the participants one point each. This involves also the participants who wrote NPCs. (And yes, it is valid on both “story volumes”)

2. NPC posts writing contest – each NPC post written in the period 1 November – 20 December will count for a special prize. (And yes, it is valid on both “story volumes”).

Prizes will be announced in the January issue of the Chronicles!

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We warmly welcome Ally, Gabe and Alex, our new additions to the crew, as well as Aesir’s return with his British Navy sailor, Secar’s initiative to bring us a wife to the Jamaican Governor’s secretary and Sabe’s to strengthen the privateers.

The British Navy sailors Richard Hope and Blaine Tylney and the privateer Rhein Caddogan got involved quickly into the story.

This month, the lovely tavern maid Rose Charity de Caulmont, played by Cyn, has won the spotlight of the month, given that she is with us for two years and a half, and fidelity has to be rewarded. Congratulations and way to go!

As for thread/ quote spotlight, the privateer master gunner Antonius van Praag, played by Secar, deserves highlighted for the most suspenseful quote from the thread ”The blockade runner”

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Neil told him they shot the rudder of the Spanish ship. 'Goddammnit! It feels as if their godforsaken rudder has been pierced in my side!!!' he shouted, between the pains in."

Such a heartrending scene can’t be anything else than suspenseful – and it is well written too…

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Warmest thanks to our lovely cartographer Moru, for her seen and unseen work, because without her support and patience the move to jcink would have not been possible.

My heartfelt appreciation for MJ, Ren and Jouko for all their help in maintaining a welcoming and friendly community, shaping the story further and keep it actively going on.

My deepest thanks also for Drae of Sizael for her continuous support and advice.

We have among us also characters who deserve spotlighted for being here already for a year:

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- Micah Silva, played by Sabe, joined 4-th of October 2012

- Hugo Lobbrecht, played by Elizabeth, joined 11-th of October 2012

- Christophe Alexandre de Vandes, played by Secar, joined 21-st of October 2012

- Alexandra Maignart, played by Cyn, joined 30-th of October 2012

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You know also that we need fresh blood of the history-loving, writing and dedicated kind… I am making an appeal to all of you to bring other friends of yours who are into writing swashbuckling adventures, because the word of mouth is the most powerful way of advertising. In addition to this, the ones who have blogs, MySpace, LiveJournal or InsaneJournal accounts, please advertise “Before the Mast” and try to bring new members. Those who have Facebook accounts – please “Like” our page and spread the word! Those with Twitter and Tumblr, follow us and retweet/ reblog some of our messages! We have the site’s Twitter, Tumblr, Facebook and Deviant Art group links in the sidebar, just a click away – but how successful can they be if even some of the members ignore them?

Voting daily in the topsites also helps… You can find them below the affiliates, under the heading "Vote for us!"

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<span class="maintitle">Vote for before the mast</span><br>
<span class="titlemedium">show us your love -- help us grow!</span>
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<img src="http://bit.ly/VSFAaA" border="0"alt="TBD Topsites"></a> <a href="http://topsite.antiquusforum.com/"><img src="http://topsite.antiquusforum.com/button.php?u=BTM" alt="Antiquus Topsite" border="0" /></a>

Help us be seen and grow with gaining new valuable members! You can give your contribution to our site’s growth, and you’ll have more people and characters to write with! Each person’s effort counts in making our writing community better, sounder or bigger!

Keep writing, have fun and a wonderful autumn!
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Yes, 1720 will be a new volume of our story.

We are moving the site to jcink, starting with January 1720, leaving the 1719 here as a sort of archive. It makes sense to start a new year in a new place, and everything about the past year to be kept here. And there will be a redirect button on each of the two sites sending from one to the other, so that it is clear that both of them are in continuation.

You will be able to read your past stories equally as writing the new ones.

Jcink has the following advantages over Invisionfree:

1) free backup of the data

2) a main account with subaccounts, enabling you to switch among characters quickly.

3) everybody knows Invisionfree has been abandoned by creators, so no support is received anymore, while jcink offers support

4) points and awards for marking achievements

5) various skins to choose from (not right from the beginning, though. Moru needs to install them).

We are trying to do it so that it gets the least amount of work and trouble for the members, and that navigation is kept smooth between the two sites.

It is up to Moru to skin and arrange the new site, and up to me to copy rules, resources, etc. So when we start January 1720, it will happen there. Until then, we are here.

What does the move mean for you, our lovely crew? You will need only 10 -30 minutes of your time (depending on how many characters you have), to go to Before the Mast's jcink new address (it can be done even before Moru skins it, whenever you have this free time), to copy and paste your bios to the new site, and the plot pages (Maybe try and group all your characters’ plot pages in one, like Mascha, Cyn and I had done?). Only these.

With this opportunity, of course, take care to update your character’s bio with everything which had happened to him/ her in 1719: got one year old? Got engaged? Married? Promoted? Changed ship? Got a revelation impacting his personality? Don't forget to add also their birthday - it makes things easier to know when to age them one year!

Also, in addition to those, set up an OOC account with your nickname (and here you can get creative with avatars and signatures if you want to). To set up a subaccount, go to "My controls" then click on "Edit Sub-accounts". Then, just sign in to the character accounts that you are linking to your OOC member account. It is really simple!

The only changes of rules which this move to jcink will entail are the OOC account, with the character accounts linked to it as subaccounts, and the fact that on the jcink site, we won’t allow anymore people to colour their dialogue (but they can bold or italic it if they want to) because the colours might be hard to read on different skins.

For a while, we''ll have threads ongoing on both pages, and the jcink one will be still an in progress work, so please have patience. (Eg, it might take a while until all the links will be updated on the new page, as we are focusing on other aspects to transfer to the new site). In a few days, we'll install a button for easier navigation between the two "volumes" of our story. And on the 1719 volume, you will notice soon that the boards might look different and the archived past threads will come back to their initial places. It is all right, just preparing for a simpler preserving of our 1719 story...

I avail myself of this opportunity to thank you all, our lovely crew of now and of yore, for your constant efforts and for writing a year of sailing adventures with us! No achievements would have been possible without your contribution!

This template; NEWSCASTER, was made by lucy aka COLOURED. of RPGU.
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1. Tell me something about your family - what do you think about them, your fondest memory of them and how has been your relationship with them?

Just one memory? Would it be awful of me to say the lovely parties? Just the excitement and colours and people...it was mesmerizing, and being all dressed up made me feel like a princess. I loved my parents very much and they always had time for me, even papa who worked so hard. I miss them so.

2. What do you like most about Tortuga? Least? Why?

I love how alive it feels! So much happening all the time and a constant flow of people to meet. Dislikes? The wild weather for one, and the odd chance that someone less than savoury will stop by.

3. How do you spend your free time?

I like to read. Papa made sure I had a good education so I love to indulge when I find some spare time. I also enjoy cooking, though I'm not terribly good at it yet. I'm hoping to get better though!

4. Do you have any regrets in life?

I regret not telling my parents how much I loved them. Generally, though, I try not to do anything that I would regret. Everything happens for a reason, after all, and it doesn't help to dwell on all the things that could have been.

5. What are you proudest of?

Once upon a time it might have been my favourite dress, so it's very telling that now it would be, perhaps, my survival? Of course I owe that to so many people, but I could have simply given up in the beginning. Instead, I stuck up my chin and made the best out of a bad situation.

6. What do you miss the most from Port-de-Paix? What least? Why?

I'm not sure there's anything I miss from there. I can't even remember going there except for work.

7. Who is your best friend?

So hard to pick just one person when I have met so many lovely people, but perhaps surprisingly, I would choose Jacques. I can talk to him about anything, and I always feel warm and safe when he's near.

8. What do you think of the war going on in the Caribbean ?

War of any kind is bad. I'm afraid I try not to listen to gossip, but men are so stubborn! If they were more like women they could sit and discuss the problems instead of having innocent blood shed.

9. What do you hope and what do you fear for the future?

It is hard to have hope some days, never knowing what tomorrow will bring, but I would love to have a love as strong as my parents did, to be able to protect my child from harm and see them grow safe and happy. My fears? Of losing everything and being alone again.

10. What do you think your greatest weakness is?

I tend to trust too easily, or I used to. I like to think I'm getting a little smarter over time, but I have this desire to be liked and it hasn't always been for the best.

11. Which are your goals in life?

My first goal right now is to birth a healthy child. Apart from that, all I can wish for is health and happiness, so simple and yet so complex at the same time.

12. What would you like to tell your king if he were sitting right here next to you??

I was alwas taught to respect my elders, but if I was more confident I might suggest to him that there are more important things in life than war and power and land. The most wealthy of us have almost nothing, but we know what&'s important.

13. What is the fondest childhood memory you have?

My sixteenth birthday. Mama gave a lovely party for me and gave me a golden rose pendant and I have worn it ever since. It's one of the only things of my past life that I have kept.

14. What is the thing that has frightened you the most?

If you asked me before the storms it would have been when I was inadvertantly teaching a group of girls. I had no idea they had been taken to be sold! But they (and I) were rescued, but the fight was terrifying and I actually cut a giant of a man with a knife! I thought he was going to kill me. Now? It is how powerless women are in certain situations against men.

15. What do you like / dislike about people?

Most people, in general, just wish to go about their lives like the rest of us. Everyone has their own story and I love to hear the stories of far off lands from the Inn's patrons. I would love to sail, to have adventures on the high seas! My only disllike is those who treat people badly, especially those whose status is beneath them. It shows what their measure truly is and it is severely lacking.

16. What is your favorite possession? Why?
My golden rose necklace I received from my mama.

17. What characteristic of Cyn's do you wish you had?

I wish I was as patient as she was. I am one of those people who needs to know things now!

18. What does Cyn do that annoys you?

Overcommitting herself! She has so many things on the go all at once!
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The Scribbling Scholar draws the readers’ attention on the effects of the latest hurricane which had affected all the West Indies.

Aboard the privateer ship, a work accident has occurred. Would the new doctor manage to heal the wounded?

The pirates have found a trunk with a treasure and a letter mentioning the name of the initial owner. Has anybody heard of that name and that pirate flag? The pirate captain has been called there too…

The pirate captain had been heard gossiping about women with a privateer next to the forge. There are allegations that he had even invited said privateer to Tortuga, to see for himself that the most beautiful women can be found only there… Good example, nothing to say!

Witnessing the aftermath of the hurricane on a desert island in the West Indies is thrilling - look out for further news!
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1. Give us some loose details about Rose and how you came up with her, which was her story on the other boards you have written her.

Rose originates from a character of mine named Charity. I came up with her when I was joining a board and there were so many self assured, sexy and confident women there and I just wanted to play a shy, sweet sort who needed to come out of her shell. She showed herself to me after that and I have been building on her ever since. She's been on a matchmaking site, a zombie survival site, Harry Potter and more!

2. Do you have a preference for playing a certain type of characters? If so, why is that?

Generally, I prefer to play females, and the damsel in distress is one of my favourites. I enjoy playing romance, especially the type that goes through many hardships first. I've also played sassy, catty types, though, and complete bastards of men!

3. Did you find it hard to choose the playby for your character?

Not really. Once I have a picture in my mind of what they look like, I use that ever handy google and just trawl until a face jumps out of the page at me. That's how it happened with Rose. That's how it happened with 99% of my characters.

4. How do you find inspiration to start threads rather than just reply to them? Do you prefer starting or just replying to threads?

I'm afraid I am terrible at starters, as much as I wish I weren't, but I'm much more comfortable reacting to a situation than I am creating them. Contrary to many others I've chatted with, I don't like listening to music when I write. I find it distracts me too much.

5. What does Rose do to annoy you?

Rose falls in love too easily! She sees a pretty face and he's charming and her heart starts thudding faster in her chest. She needs to do a lot more growing up before she's ready to face what's ahead.

6. Where do you see Rose in five years (in our story)?

I would hope that she's a great mother. She would be very protective to any child of hers, like a mother wolf! Finding a man who would accept her and her illegitimate child would be wonderful, and travel! She wouldn't be happy to stay at home with the children all the time. She'd want to go and sail as well. Why should the men have all the fun?

7. What characteristic of Rose's do you wish you had?

Instead of curling up and crying over things, Rose at least faces her problems head on and tries to work them out. I wish I had that confidence!

8. What about Rose is most similar to you?

We're both very shy. We both have trouble talking to people but once we come out of our shell it's hard to shut us up!

9. What has Rose done that you would never do?

Where do I start? Cutting a man with a knife. Listening to a stranger and travelling with them to who knows where. Falling for a pirate...although I might just have done that too!

10. When and how have you discovered your passion for RPGs?

I think it started as more of an interest at first, a hobby to fill in time and over the years it grew into something I can't live without. The first thing I do of a morning is turn on the computer to check for new posts. It's a combination of the stories, the characters and the people behind them that draws me. I need all three to keep my interest. Give me great characters and stories but awful people behind them and I'm gone.

11. Tell us one memory or initial impression related to your beginnings on “Before the Mast”. How did it change with the time passing?

I was a little overwhelmed at first. I've never been involved in anything historical and history was my worst subject at school and I never thought I'd be able to keep up with all the authentic detail. I'm still a little overwhelmed, but it's better than it was. I've relaxed a lot more, though I'm still worried about disappointing or making a huge faux pas!

12. How do you usually find your inspiration for characters and plots?

The setting helps a lot. Often that can kick off ideas for me, but I'm one of those who doesn't have many sites. I have here, and my own site so it's a lot easier to find character ideas when you're following a story and talking to people, when you can go "Ah, I know who could fit right in here!"

13. How would you see Rose if born and raised in our time? What would she be and how would her life be?

Oh goodness, I have no idea! Rose is a little too naive for her own good. She adores children though, so perhaps she would be studying to become a teacher. Either that, or she'd be doting on her own child.

14. What would be the perfect gift from you to Rose?

Probably a pile of new books. She doesn't have many anymore after losing her pampered lifestyle.

15. What is the most fun thing about Rose?

Often, I'll go into a reply with a firm idea of what will happen but as I write, she steers me away and ends up doing her own thing. She's much more flirty than I ever meant for her to be!

16. Which is your favourite book, or author?

I have too many to choose just one! JK Rowling, Anne Rice, Christine Feehan, Charlaine Harris, George RR Martin... I have a fondness for vampire and werewolf novels, but NOT Twilight (apologies to any fans).

17. Which are your musical preferences?

I'm stuck firmly in the 80s so almost anything from then, and I adore classical, musicals, etc. A huge Gleek too!

18. Why does the past inspire you?

Things were so much simpler then, at least to me. People had to actually get out in the world and live their lives. Nowadays you can do everything from the comfort of your own home and you lose that connection to other people.
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Given that a blockade remains interesting only for a few days before boredom installs, in lack of fresh action. Aboard the British Navy ship, the doctor is stargazing while sailors need him in the sickbay.

The privateer ship is boarding a blockade runner, fighting heavily for the prize. Hopefully it will be worth the price of blood!

Aboard Le Phenix, a lucky day has raised the rear-admiral’s popularity with common sailors.

The discipline aboard the French ship, though, is severely lacking. While chasing a Spanish cutter, though, a lieutenant left his battle station without leave, and the boatswain cursed loudly in front of the captain.

Don’t miss the next breaking news from the blockade zone!
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Before going to the market place, to hear more of the gossips, the chronicler is letting the readers know the latest news.

In Kingston, the new master gunner of a British Navy ship is inspecting the guns and taking over.

A reputed young lawyer is questioning a young governess, in the attempt to prove her case at law. Would she succeed to find the right arguments for it? It is up to the judge to consider…

In Nueva Valencia, the Feast of the Deceased, properly celebrated in family, resulted not only in traditional meals, drinks, songs and stories about the bygone loved ones, but also in a love letter and a friendly ghost’s apparition. Everything, meant for the healing of the broken heart, exactly like the further decision of undertaking three pilgrimages in November and December. But will the pilgrimages really happen, or will the Devil interfere in this plan?

In Maracaibo, the feast of the patron saint of the town brought old lovers face to face again after more than a year since the break up. Will the flame rekindle again? And if yes, for how much?

Oblivious about the blockade, a man is planning a pilgrimage to two holy places in Cuba. Who will tell him the truth?

The tavern helper from the ”Armoury of San Juan” was seen falling into a man’s arms in the harbour. Given that they had remained to chat a little afterwards, one can suspect it hadn’t happened just by mistake…

In Port de Paix, the rumours about the nearly broken engagement of two of the upper class representatives still run rampant. People are taking sides if to believe or not the rumours about the fiancee’s tainted reputation.

A privateer had been invited to lunch by a local shop helper. Some girls have a taste for the exotic…

While the allied Navy ships anchored in port, the British sailors are trying their best not to get lost in a town whose language most don’t speak. The taverns are the most sought objectives, where one can find warrant officers as well.

In Tortuga, the pirate captain got caught between the fires of the confessions from the past of two crewmates who had known each other in other seas – not to mention the involvement of the mother of all crew, who might get into unforeseen trouble for this.

Somewhere in the inn, the pirate carpenter is teaching a young rigger survival lessons in a tough world.

…And the world gets even tougher when the pirate captain has to deliver
bad news to two of the tavern girls…

One of the tavern maids has been brewing business plans approved both by her employer and the pirate captain, who has volunteered to invest in a share of the new shop. Others, have planned a birthday party for two pirates, one of them just learning about the surprise…

As the party preparations are going on, for further news, don’t miss the next issue of the “Histories and Chronicles of the West Indies”!
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The Chronicler has been mingling among the guests at the masquerade party hosted by Sir Woodes Rogers, the Governor of Bahamas, eavesdropping where the case might be. And he had seen a lot of things…

Queen Cleopatra seems captivated by Robin Hood, while the Roman centurion has conquered Iberia, dwellers included, and Apollo is still discussing with one of his humble adorers.

Romeo has befriended a Midnight Prince, who had invited him already to dinner when back in Kingston, a place happening to be both of them’s residence, while an angel has received in his winged arms a man masked only with a scarf and in commoner's clothes. Was he trying to imitate Homer?

King Oberon seems well acquainted with one of the serving maids, and their discussion in French was intimate enough to be barely whispered, without being overheard.

Well, Pierrot seems too friendly with Queen Cleopatra, whose former dance partner, Robin Hood, is now discussing with an unmasked man in a balcony, so ungentlemanlike sharing a bottle of rhum together.

The French Rear-Admiral, shining in his uniform, is smiling at Queen Titania, while a Sultan has no doubt found the whitest pearl for his harem, retiring with her in a corner. Does it matter that the plumed lady’s huge dress got him a little squished on that loveseat, so they felt the need to take a walk outside instead?

Don’t miss our next news report from the New Year Masquerade!
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