Short Story: "Muse"

Plain old discussion of Alicorn stories.

Re: Short Story: "Muse"

Postby Alicorn » Mon Mar 02, 2015 6:44 pm

Bells aren't by default particularly artistic in a way that the muse pathogen could use; I don't think they'd kill or maim themselves but to start out they'd only be functional in the constrained way that, say, Golden when she thought Edward was dead, was. The ones with no existing artistic outlet would instantly grit their teeth and collect one, exactly what would depend on the individual. The ones who start out good at some sort of art or music would lean on it hard, figure out how to satisfy the intense drive as efficiently as possible, collect whatever adequately-arty things they could manage to use from Muse to decorate their surroundings and not be in constant aesthetic torment, and then probably attack the problem as fiercely as they could with their remaining energy. One merely discovering the planet but not getting infected skips straight to that last. (It's possible that not every beMused person wants a cure; it does provide intense inspiration in addition to drastically harshening one's standards, and the population of Muse is descended from people who could cope well enough to establish a colony on half their expected manpower. Plus once you're used to it, it would be sort of like someone offering to make a baseline human enraptured by the glory of bat urine or something. But certainly developing a vaccine and a cure for those who want it is a priority.)
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Re: Short Story: "Muse"

Postby Tamien » Mon Mar 02, 2015 6:52 pm

beMused! :D
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Re: Short Story: "Muse"

Postby Kappa » Mon Mar 02, 2015 7:59 pm

Enraptured by the glory of bat urine! <33333
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Re: Short Story: "Muse"

Postby Bluelantern » Tue Mar 03, 2015 6:13 am

I wonder if BeMused art is such that it has some sort of unusual cognitive effect. I mean, centuries of refining the skill of stimulating the aesthetic pleasure centers or something...
Sorry for my bad english

"Yambe Akka take the stars, they’re zombies!" - Isabella Amariah
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Re: Short Story: "Muse"

Postby Alicorn » Tue Mar 03, 2015 9:10 am

The muse pathogen has enough of an idiosyncratic effect person to person that while they can consistently produce art that an uninfected person will find beautiful, they don't have any special ability to target individual tastes. They might show you your favorite painting or song ever made, but it won't have a special memetic effect that is qualitatively different from other paintings and songs you like.
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Re: Short Story: "Muse"

Postby PlainDealingVillain » Thu Mar 05, 2015 10:39 pm

I read something recently that talked about how the original impact of Lovecraft is lost today because the barely-understood things he used to craft almost-comprehensible horrors then are now all commonplace or debunked, so we don't get the same sense of mystery and horrific discovery from his stories.

I think this story captures that feeling wonderfully. It made my skin crawl in an excellent way.
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Re: Short Story: "Muse"

Postby DanielH » Wed Feb 22, 2017 1:10 pm

Do the beMused have better senses or just more refined taste? There’s some point where something that’s slightly the wrong color is close enough that I wouldn’t notice but a Musician would, and there’s the point where I literally couldn’t tell the difference. Would that latrer point also be different for them?
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Re: Short Story: "Muse"

Postby Alicorn » Wed Feb 22, 2017 9:09 pm

I suspect that at least for some things you could if you tried really hard learn to tell the difference, and they try really hard.
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Re: Short Story: "Muse"

Postby DanielH » Wed Feb 22, 2017 9:20 pm

Yeah, that’s what I was asking. If I could tell the difference by looking carefully, maybe if it was pointed out to me, then I’d expect them to notice. This was about whether the “literally can’t tell” level was the same.
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Re: Short Story: "Muse"

Postby Kaylin » Thu Feb 23, 2017 8:18 am

Oh. Wow.

...Alicorn, I think you may have infected us with beMusement by exposing us to this work of art.
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