TTC: Commentary 03

“Time & Tied” PARTS 5 & 6

DAE_MathTans1. Original Date Of Completion: NOV 10, 2000
2. What I Was Doing: Finishing my University Degree
3. Hard Date Change: They were trapped on June 15, 1999
4. Other changes of note:
-Removed discussion of specially minted coins
-Original in-episode time skip was almost 3 days, not 24 hours
-Shuffled a conversation order slightly, from part 6 to part 5

WHAT’S IN A NAME

At the end of Commentary 01, I mentioned that the original name for the ENTIRE story was “Time Trippers”. It was a placeholder name. I liked the double entendre in that they were taking “time trips” while they were effectively “tripping” (as in falling over) in terms of their efforts. But “tripping” also has a third meaning, namely doing drugs, an association I was less pleased about.

Still, I kept that “placeholder name” through every incarnation, even the 2013 revision that I undertook. Finally, now in 2015, before publishing it here on the blog, I did due diligence in terms of seeing whether the name was now out there anywhere else.

It was. Twice. It’s some comedy movie (in IMDb) from 2012 about “fact checkers”, and it’s also a web original series (on YouTube) from 2013 about students from the future getting trapped in our present. (I watched the first episode, which is less than 15 minutes. Not bad.) And outside of video, “Time Trippers” is a rock and roll band, which is funny for me because of Corry. (We’ll meet him and his band later on.) So, that’s what I get for resting on my laurels!

Thus, I needed a new name. And as I brainstormed new ideas, I found that a lot of them were ALSO taken. Well, darn. (I kept a list, but have since lost the file.) Eventually, I found five possibilities that I kind of liked, which weren’t taken, and asked Facebook friends for their opinion on: “Time Tuners”, “Time and Tied”, “Processing Time”, “Time Management” and “Countdown Timers”. Many also offered their own suggestions (I hadn’t considered “Watch” as a double use word – nice).

“Time Management” was popular (in that more than one person liked it), but the more I considered it, the more I thought my story characters weren’t managing time very well – if anything, they were “processing” it. But someone else thought that was too clinical. (If not for that, and a chat at work, “Processing” might have won.) Since “Time and Tied” was actually a popular runner up choice, that’s what I went with… and I like that I can still use TT as an abbreviation. It’s a pun on “time and tide wait for no man”, where here “tied” refers to how one character is roped into a destiny. You likely know who by now.

ABOUT PARTS 5 & 6

XoversCSpoilers (up to part 6) follow.

Why did they end up in June, rather than September? Mostly for drama, and to emphasize the occasional random hiccup in the machine. But partly because, back in 1999, the Canadian mint was rolling out 12 special quarters, one per month. Were they actually produced in the month stamped on them? No idea. But in the original written version, Frank had remarked on how he’d used a June 1999 quarter, so maybe that month got tied into the machine too. The mention got nixed, now that there’s no hard dates.

So, how were they supposed to time travel, since getting specifically minted quarters of their present month (to return) would be a problem? Good news – as the nickel here showed, any coin will work! Of course, travel to future years will remain impossible, barring reprogramming. Even travel within their present will be impossible in January – no key coins are in circulation yet. The good news? In Carrie’s present, Frank will have had 9 months to check dates on coins, and build up a stockpile. The bad news? This is still a finite number of trips.

Chapter3b2pencil

How a pic looks before inking

The other key change to the latest episode was shortening the time frame they were stranded. Three days felt excessive, particularly given their condition to end part 5 – but then I’m no doctor, so what’s believable? Also, I’d written into the narrative Frank’s right arm hurt, but when I drew it, it became the left. So I removed the word ‘right’. Incidentally, random aside, I find the dishevelled Carrie I drew for these parts kind of hot looking. Maybe it’s the messy hair? Um. Just me?

Plot-wise, there’s now the “Mysterious Figure”, who seems to know about the machine. Where/when is he from? How did he know to come into the woods? Sorry, you will NOT get answers on that for a while yet. What I will handle first is the curious temporal rules that you’re getting hints of – as Carrie and Frank discussed, how changeable is the past? Are the rules here more like “Back to the Future” or “Terminator”? (Or put another way, how much of this story did I have to lay out in advance, based on future trips?)

Episode 3 marked the first time I wrote the date in my original OP header, for easy tracking. “Breakdown” was the original chapter title (due to the physical and emotional breakdown, as well as a ‘break down’ of time travel repercussions). “Welcome Change” was my recent addition after the episode split (and is naturally a pun on ‘change’). Up next, we meet Julie LaMille. Ohhh boy, do we meet Julie.

Coming This Friday: Group Chemistry
(That chapter is already up on Wattpad, if you want to investigate there.)

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