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Under The Tartosan Sun

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    haneulhaneul Posts: 1,954 Member
    Yay - an update <3, but please don't feel as if you must post something new for at least one of your stories each week. That's a lot of work.
    I really like the close friendship of the four ladies, how non-judgmental they are of one another and generally how comfortable they are with one another. Having a network or group of people to trust is priceless.
    "Stop right there hun. There is nothing unbelievable about Matteo falling in love with you. He is not out of your league, and he never was."
    This is especially sweet and important for them to say to Liberty.

    Londyn's story with her mother is so realistic. The stats about LGBTQIA+ teens being disowned by their parents are heartbreaking. I imagine that the parents who reject their children must feel "hurt" or "betrayed" in some way, but I honestly can't understand that and will be side-eyeing Londyn's mother forever.

    I love all the thoughtful details you include: the building materials and construction permits that you also mentioned in another thread, Londyn and Danielle applying for citizenship, Liberty's difficulty with nails…

    The fire has me concerned, but since I get the sense that the couples will be protected and that Under the Tartosan Sun is not a tragedy, I'm stubbornly refusing to be that concerned. But fires are serious and can spread quickly and easily. In real life, my sprinklers and fire alarms are checked by inspectors every 6 months (it's the law here).
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    DaniRose2143DaniRose2143 Posts: 9,396 Member
    edited December 2022
    @haneul Thank you.❤️ It is a lot of work, but with the cliffhanger ending I felt, briefly, like I owed it to the readers to give them resolution quickly. If I was a tv producer I would need therapy to keep from going mad with guilt for leaving my viewers stuck in limbo for months, not just two weeks.😊
    One of the qualities I've wanted the main cast to have and I feel like I've done a good job portraying, is exactly that openness and honesty they share. They are a sisterhood even if none of them are related. They can comfortably talk to each other about anything, though they may occasionally feel as if they have gone too far with a question.

    Summer's question to Danielle about if she had ever entertained romantic feelings for her was a subtle way to acknowledge that it almost came to be. When I realized Danielle was a lesbian and I was going through different scenarios of how that would play out I did a test where I made Summer pansexual. I went into the romance mod I use and gave each of them one point of attraction related to something about the other. I had them scope the surroundings and they picked each other out. I weighed the option of having them move from friends to lovers but, thank god, I chose to create Londyn and let love play out. That was the best decision I made with this story.🙂 I just felt it was too easy, and a bit cliché even, to have Summer and Danielle fall in love. Their story feels more natural as close friends.

    With this chapter I also relied on the dialogue to do most of the work. In my mind the conversation on the beach took place with them stretched out of their lounge chairs and strolling shoulder to shoulder along the beach and through the square. Sadly the game will not cooperate on those details. Sims cannot talk to one another while on a lounge chair unless they sit on the edge with their feet on the ground. Like, who thought that up? Why can't they just turn their heads to look at the one they're talking to? There's also the issue with sims walking single file only. Ugh, that drives me batty. Once again, who thought that up? I struggle with poses so I couldn't get the pictures I wanted to fit the picture in my head. The same thing with my description of the square in Tartosa and the trattorias and al fresco dining. That last one may one day have a remedy. TwistedMexi is testing a mod that will allow us to build our own worlds. I'm not sure how close it is to being released but it offers hope at least.

    As far as the fate of Matteo and Darian, I am on record as saying that the deaths of main characters is not part of the story, so in that way they are safe. There are at least three possibilities I'm considering at the moment and there may be a couple more by the time I get back to the story.
    Post edited by DaniRose2143 on
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    luciusstormluciusstorm Posts: 1,832 Member
    @DaniRose2143, I really like this chapter. I love the way you use their conversation to explore who the ladies are, who they were and how they got here. I have to admit, I really liked the "what could have been but wasn't" between Danielle and Summer. Londyn's sadder childhood that leads to her current strength... I love that, both for it's own sake and for purely selfish reasons of my own.

    I thought this was wonderfully well written... touching, at times funny and always true.

    "Love plays by its own rules and it doesn't care about ours."

    The dramatic cliffhanger really works for me. You've been wanting to bring some drama and I think you found a way to do it that's true to your story.
    Fate is a riddle and we choose our own answer. Wyrd Girls
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    haneulhaneul Posts: 1,954 Member
    edited December 2022
    @DaniRose2143
    I have not really noticed that Sims don't walk together, but that's annoying. Lounge chairs aside, my Sims are pretty good at making eye contact and looking at one another so I've not had issues with this yet but my CC/Mods folder also has more than 4,000 files and is 19.5GB. I may not have a great grasp on what is a mod and what is the game. I know you said you struggled with poses, so this may not be helpful because it's basically a pose... but there are walk & talk animations available. I don't know how many creators have made them, but I was able to quickly find one that's free: https://www.patreon.com/posts/preview-pack-68758413. TwistedMexi also has the T.O.O.L. mod, so even though it would be an absolute pain to set up it's probably possible to have some tables and chairs in the main area of Tartosa for outside dining (but it would be a bring your own food situation). When I was testing out CC recolors, I used the mod to forcefully place some objects onto the pier in Copperdale, which is unfortunately far from any lot.

    ETA: To be clear, I think you accomplished everything you set out to with the dialogue and for that section it was nice to be able to just concentrate on the text.
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    DaniRose2143DaniRose2143 Posts: 9,396 Member
    edited December 2022
    @haneul
    My sims don't always walk single file but one will always be at least one step behind the other. My struggles with poses is getting two or more sims lined up. It might be more accurate to say my struggles are with a lack of patience for getting them positioned exactly where I need them. I'm not entirely sure I can use the name of my particular romance mod, I need to check with Cade, but it's the safer for work version of the notorious one I know we can't mention. The latest version has a new pose player built in to it that was made in collaboration with the guy who made the original. I have a new problem and T.O.O.L. may be my savior. Thank you for reminding me of it. Somebody left their laptop on one of the tables in the square. It doesn't belong to any of my characters but it draws them even at long distance and it's getting on my nerves.🤨
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    GalacticGalGalacticGal Posts: 29,102 Member
    @luciusstorm Take your time. I spent four days writing it and I’m still trying to process it. I’m proud of this one from a storytelling perspective and feeling like I need to apologize to my readers for the emotional toll.

    Evoking emotions in the reader is what a writer is supposed to do. Don't apologize for it.
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    luciusstormluciusstorm Posts: 1,832 Member
    @luciusstorm Take your time. I spent four days writing it and I’m still trying to process it. I’m proud of this one from a storytelling perspective and feeling like I need to apologize to my readers for the emotional toll.

    Evoking emotions in the reader is what a writer is supposed to do. Don't apologize for it.

    ^^^^ This!
    Fate is a riddle and we choose our own answer. Wyrd Girls
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    mightyspritemightysprite Posts: 6,211 Member
    Same sentiment in different words, don't be afraid of a little conflict and tension in the story, at least if it feels natural to the story :)
    I'm also often frustrated by how sims cannot relax and talk at the same time. Relaxation is the perfect time to talk with whoever you're relaxing with.
    Don't buy broken stuff
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    GalacticGalGalacticGal Posts: 29,102 Member
    edited December 2022
    @DaniRose2143 That's far more than wow. You built the tension up, seamlessly, to the point I thought your warning was a bluff. Then quite artfully things turned. Well done. Very well done. I bow to you and your craft. My tear ducts did get going a bit. I have a funeral in just a short time. Must bow out and grab a shower!
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    DaniRose2143DaniRose2143 Posts: 9,396 Member
    @mightysprite If it was just two characters talking in would be something I could work with. The way they had their chairs setup if Londyn was talking to Summer or Liberty and Danielle were talking they would have been talking to the other ones back. That is a huge oversight on their part. I wonder if some enterprising modder has a fix for that? I have a question for you while I'm thinking about it, how do you create those signature pics that link to your thread? I would love to do something like that for one or both of my stories.🙂

    @GalacticGal I'm so sorry you have a funeral to attend, but I am happy you enjoyed this chapter. You are so sweet with those kind words about my writing. I feel like I'm finally getting the hang of it. I do sometimes feel like I'm engaging in some sort of passive-aggressive emotional terrorism when I post things like this though.😊
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    Metior_IceMetior_Ice Posts: 3,116 Member
    Finally had a chance to read the update!

    That was a roller coaster! It definitely played at my heart strings.
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    DaniRose2143DaniRose2143 Posts: 9,396 Member
    @Metior_Ice Thank you very much! This chapter did cover a lot of different emotions and added some depth to the members of the sisterhood. I'm finding myself drawn to the term 'the sisterhood' as a shorthand reference to Danielle, Londyn, Summer, and Liberty.

    I'm working on putting together character profiles and a guide in the first post to help new readers get caught up without having to go through all 33 chapters and 19 pages.🙂
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    DaniRose2143DaniRose2143 Posts: 9,396 Member
    The first post has been updated with bios of all the important characters, well I think I have everybody covered, let me put it that way. I also set up a few select early chapters to bring new readers up to speed and cut off twenty or so chapters that they can go back to later if they feel like they want to try tackling the whole story.

    Thank you everybody!🥰
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    mightyspritemightysprite Posts: 6,211 Member
    edited December 2022
    how do you create those signature pics that link to your thread?

    Hi Dani,
    If you look in your signature settings, you can enter bbcode there the same way you would in a regular post.
    I see you already have links in your signature.
    For an image with link, the url tag goes on the outside (with the url= and all that ) and then the img tag goes on the inside. The link after url= is the place you want the link to send people. The link inside the img tag should be the source of the picture, as when we post images in posts with img tags.
    :)

    example
    [url=https://forums.thesims.com/thread_title_here][img]https://i.postimg.cc/image_address_here[/img][/url]
    
    Don't buy broken stuff
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    DaniRose2143DaniRose2143 Posts: 9,396 Member
    @mightysprite Thank you, but my bad. I was curious how you made the graphic itself. Photoshop or Gimp or something like that?
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    hellohannah2hellohannah2 Posts: 839 Member
    The way I gasped a the end! it HAS to be okay - I refuse to believe that anything bad has happened, but I'll be eagerly awaiting an update just to see what's gone down.

    I enjoyed all the reminiscing the girls did, they're like the kinds of friends everyone would be lucky to have. Open, honest, non judgmental, supportive and super fun to be around. Everyone should be so lucky. It seems like it was a cathartic conversation for them, particularly for Summer and Danielle, who got to talk to each other about that tiny moment when they were sixteen. I know how occurrences like that can stick with you for years, so it's really nice to have the opportunity to talk to the other person about it after so long.

    Re: updates - we all love it when you update the story and give us more fab content to read, but don't feel pressured to stick to any schedule, especially with two stories on the go. If you can manage it and you love doing it, then great! But burnout is real, so go easy on yourself if you find that it's a little bit too much to juggle with real-life stuff too.

    To answer about the signature pics, I use photoshop for mine, only because I have access to a creative cloud account through my work. It's really expensive too, and gimp can do all of the basic things you'd need to create a simple image like a signature. Also it's less of a learning curve!
    s54gWQ5.png
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    haneulhaneul Posts: 1,954 Member
    Regarding banners, I use Photoshop as well, but Photoshop, Lightroom, and the rest of the Creative Cloud Suite are complete overkill for the Sims. As hellohannah2 suggested, GIMP is similar. There's also Canva, which is online and I think it's pretty simple.

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    DaniRose2143DaniRose2143 Posts: 9,396 Member
    @hellohannah2 @haneul Thank you both very much for the information about the signature pic.❤️

    Without giving too much away, I am on record in the past that deaths won't be a part of this story. But other bad things can happen, and the girls don't know that their men can't die. All they know is something very bad is happening and Matteo and Darian are unaccounted for, and they may be in danger. It helps to illustrate just how much Liberty and Summer love Matteo and Darian. The thought that they may never see them again is almost too much to bear. Liberty is having a much worse time dealing with it and the wedding coming up shortly is making this worse for her than Summer. Not that Summer is having an easy time dealing with the situation.

    That won't be the last time the ladies get together for a day of bonding, sisterhood, and sharing. That was one of the easiest chapters to write. Once I got the first little idea the words just flowed. There were several rewrites and edits, but every time I did one I was right back into the flow. I wish they were all that easy.😁

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    mightyspritemightysprite Posts: 6,211 Member
    Ahh okay sorry to be slow about that @DaniRose2143 :)
    I use Gimp. I can barely understand how to use the handful of functions that I use in Gimp, I'd need to take a class or something to figure out Photoshop lol
    (annoying details on the image creation process in the spoiler to spare everyone)
    Gimp has a handy "select by color" function. You click on a spot and it selects everything with that color. And then once you have created the selection, you can paintbrush or whatever across a large area, and it will only affect the selection.
    I put the text in a bright yellow or some other color that doesn't appear nearby in the image, then select by color, so that only the text is selected. Then paintbrush across the selection in various colors to create the stripes.
    Honestly, I figured this out sort of by accident. I was trying to do something with layers, where the text was in its own layer and I would paintbrush only on that layer. I couldn't quite work it out. Most image software probably has a way to do that using layers, but it would take someone more savvy to tell you how.
    Don't buy broken stuff
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    DaniRose2143DaniRose2143 Posts: 9,396 Member
    edited January 2023
    Ugh! This fire storyline is going to drive me to drink. It can't burn Celebrazioni down but I can really damage the interior. Ok, that works...except it takes almost an entire sim day for the fire to scorch the entire first floor and the second floor never catches fire. I tried it once in the main save and all the characters ended up showing up at some point but they showed up in their everyday outfits not the swimsuits they were wearing and since there is a fire happening I can't have them change. Oh that's nothing. They all stand there and nearly die because their needs all go into the red, and once again there is a fire happening and I can't give them commands to tend their needs.

    It keeps getting better. So to try and work around all of this I used a generic save, burned the lot up as best I could, nearly killing the spellcasters in the process. I saved the burnt out copy to my library and replaced the original in the main save with that one...and all the damaged items had been replaced with new ones. About all I can think of is to take screenshots of the interior in the generic save, try to do some fire damage on the outside with the original version in the main save and very carefully take pictures of Londyn, Matteo, and Darian outside in such a way that you can't see the almost fully restored interior. It would be easier if there was a way to remove the main characters until I get the work done then put them back in. I'm afraid if I do that it's going to wreck everything.

    Remind me to think smaller and not commit myself to these huge projects.😁
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    luciusstormluciusstorm Posts: 1,832 Member
    Remind me to think smaller and not commit myself to these huge projects.😁

    Absolutely. Just like you remind me to stop doing grand battles... and probably with as much success. B)
    Fate is a riddle and we choose our own answer. Wyrd Girls
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    haneulhaneul Posts: 1,954 Member
    Do you have MCCC or UI cheats? I'm not sure if you've tried, but you should hopefully be able to easily change outfits instantly with MCCC as long as you can select a Sim and you can also make them happy which should fix the needs problems. With UI cheats, I think you can also fix any needs of the active household by clicking on the needs.
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    DaniRose2143DaniRose2143 Posts: 9,396 Member
    @luciusstorm You're right, I won't listen. This story was supposed to be all about Danielle when it started. Schemes was supposed to be about Rayvn and Judith. Look at both of them now. I get carried away.

    @haneul I don't have MCCC installed currently. I have been having issues recently with extremely long load times, 10 minutes or more and I had to uninstall it. The other problem is with a fire happening it won't let me click on any sims.

    I think I found the problem with Danielle, Londyn, and Liberty showing up and not leaving. They are a welcome wagon.
    9yjWf0q.png

    In order to set fire to the lot I had to change it to residential. You can't set fire to a community lot. I tried again just a minute ago and this time Liberty came running up holding a plate with a fruit cake. I haven't seen that before in the previous attempts. The fire cancels the event but everybody is freaking out and won't leave. So I need to find a mod to prevent welcome wagons and maybe add the private residence lot trait and see if that keeps sims away and try again.

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    mightyspritemightysprite Posts: 6,211 Member
    I think I found the problem with Danielle, Londyn, and Liberty showing up and not leaving. They are a welcome wagon.
    9yjWf0q.png

    Well now, THAT'S a story.

    Don't buy broken stuff
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    DaniRose2143DaniRose2143 Posts: 9,396 Member
    I think I found the problem with Danielle, Londyn, and Liberty showing up and not leaving. They are a welcome wagon.
    9yjWf0q.png

    Well now, THAT'S a story.

    Under normal circumstances it could be. I totally forgot about the welcome wagon event and the fact that I had changed the lot type. In the previous three attempts when they showed up I was with the spellcaster(s) on the other side of the building so I never saw the fruit cake. On those occasions by the time I saw them they had ditched the cake. Maybe they threw it into the fire to appease or welcome the fire gods? Or they threw it into the fire for purely simmanitarian reasons?

    In hindsight it's all making sense now. Of course the welcome wagon would show up, the Morgyn's bought the place and moved in so they could incinerate it. Naturally my characters would arrive as the welcome wagon, other than a random townie who I'm allowing to live in the Thebe Estate until I need it, they are the only sims who live in Tartosa.🤦🏻‍♀️ I found the mod I needed and I was finally able to burn the place up without my sims showing up. It took two sim days even with 8 Morgyn's working around the clock. I had to disable needs decay. One Morgyn died when he rather stupidly decided to go dancing in a room that was in fact on fire. Unfortunately attempts to extinguish him in time were unsuccessful.

    With Celebrazioni heavily damaged I get to be Demolition Dani, then Dani The Builder. I have the Huntley's home to remodel and something new to replace Celebrazioni. I wonder what it will be?🤔

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