A hub for the "Book of Masks" universe.
"The Book of Masks" : A high school student discovers a grimoire that can make magical disguises.
"The Wandering Stars" : Sequel to "The Book of Masks."
"Student Bodies" : A high school student is turned into a blue goo that can possess people.
For non-WdC Members
"The Book of Masks: Archives" : Dodges the "Servers Busy" barrier!
"The Book of Masks (Abridged)" : Introductory storylines for new readers.
"BoM/TWS Message Forum" : Community for readers of the interactives.
"BoM/TWS/SB Wiki" : Notes and documentation for authors. Spoilers!
2/27: Interactive: "Extra Bodies, Just Laying Around"
2/27: Public: "Extra Bodies, Just Laying Around"
|There seems to be some confusion still about the revisions I'm making to Book of Masks—the whys and the hows—and also about what exactly the "The Non-Canonical Book of Masks" [NC-BoM] is supposed to be. This is surely my own fault. So, let me try explaining it again.
When I started writing Book of Masks all those years ago, there was very little lore. I knew the structure of the book, and the contents of the first seven spells. But I had no theory of magic. I had no setting (except the name of the town and the schools and the bookstore), and I only knew the names and stereotypes of half a dozen characters. And though I tried to keep various branches in continuity with each other, each branch tended to develop on its own.
Eventually I began constructing notes for myself. Character sketches, class schedules, a worked-out magical theory, even a map of the city. The lore developed. Some early ideas were dropped and some later ones expanded.
But as things developed, two large fractures opened up in the continuity.
The first fracture opened after I started keeping outlines of each branch, detailing when events happened, so that I could keep track of the same events across different branches. Storylines written after I started making outlines are kept in a close continuity. Storylines written before that are probably all kinds of screwy in terms of when things happen.
The second fracture separated an important change in mask lore. In early chapters it was assumed that anyone who put on a mask would get the memories instantly. Later, I adopted a suggestion that only Will should be able to get instant memories, and that other people would get them very slowly. This marks a huge difference between the kinds of plots that developed before the change, and the kind of plots that developed after.
One consequence is that I never return to branches written on the early side of either of these divides. I like having strong continuities, and I don't want to write sequel chapters that align with early chapters but contradict developed lore, or sequel chapters that contradict early chapters because they align with later lore. This means there are a lot of storylines that I don't really have a chance to return to.
So I am going back through the interactive and trying to close up those gaps. Where I can heal the contradictions by rewriting chapters, then that is what I am doing. But where a chapter revision will not work because the contradictions run so deep, I am copying the original chapters to the NC-BoM and deleting them from BoM. That way the original chapters are not lost, but the contradictions disappear from the revised version.
And, I confess, I am also getting rid of some branches that I just don't like anymore.
So I am only excising two kinds of branches: Those that contain technical "errors" (errors, that is, from the standpoint of latter-day lore) and those that I just don't like. This is NOT an attempt to establish a "canonical" storyline. It is only meant to segregate chapters that, for technical reasons or reasons of personal taste, are now problematic.
Also: I am, to the best of my abilities, only doing this for branches that I have written. I am NOT checking/reviewing or removing chapters written by other authors, even if they contain contradictions. [**] This may change in the future, when I get into branches that contain lots of sub-branches by other authors. But those decisions and negotiations will be made when I get to them.
So, if you think you've got a pretty good handle on how the lore currently works, please do continue to add to BoM, and if you're not sure about something, email me to ask. What I'm doing is localized and very specific housecleaning, not changing the rules.
Also, if you want to add chapters to NC-BoM, please do so. It is not intended to be a special, read-only archive.
[**] Okay, yes, with one exception. I cut out the "vore" branch. That one was REALLY out of place, and it is ancient.