I'm a script writer in search of some info

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I'm a script writer in search of some info

Postby Plot Device » Nov 22, 2005 1:23 am

Hi! 8)

I am trying to write an adventure script and I need to include a non-public cave in my story. I already wrote the script as taking place on the coast of Maine, but after reviewing some caving web sites, I discovered that the types of rock indigenous to Maine's coast line won't allow for an elaborate cave system. So I now must relocate my story to another coastal region somewhere on the continental US to lend some cred to my story.

Can anyone here suggest such a region?

Thanks! :)




Here are some details:

1) It doesn't have to be a REAL cave (like the Sea Lion Caves in Oregon). I just need a strip of coastline where the type of rock there in that region is capable of having caves, and evidently Maine is NOT the place. (Although if someone here wants to tell me --in thruthfullness-- that Maine CAN have coastal caves, I'd be infinitely happy!)

2) The story takes place in a cliff-top house beside the ocean, and lower down the cliff face, not far from the house, there is supposed to be a SMALL cave just above the tidal mark. (Small as in the size of a two-car garage.)

3) The plot progresses so that the main characters need to hide temporarilly in this small cave to avoid capture by the bad guys, but later they realize they are soon going to be discovered unless they can find another way out of this smaller cave other than the front entrance. While trying to figure out what to do, they find out that there is a wall of rock behind them that conceals ANOTHER cave of larger proportions: one that can take them away from this smaller cave. (There is a "way" that they are able to get through the rock--this is a fantasy story, so don't sweat the details of how the hell they get through, just trust me that they do.)

4) After journeying through this larger network of caves, they eventually arrive at a sizable cavern where a showdown between protag and antag takes palce.


So I need to conveneintly claim that there is an undiscovered network of caves snaking through a coastal cliffside. The degree of credibility I need for this tale is that I need a real place where that sort of rock really exists. Not where such caves actually DO exist, only where such caves COULD exist simply because the real rock types in that real region is of a cave-friendly pedigree.
Last edited by Plot Device on Nov 22, 2005 2:03 am, edited 2 times in total.
In the field of fantasy literature, there is one story element which is cited by most scholars as being downright necessary to a worthwhile adventure plot: the main protagonist MUST journey into an underground lair of some kind.
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Postby NZcaver » Nov 22, 2005 1:48 am

Plot Device - yep, I've seen some of Maine's sea caves, so I know what you mean. :wink:

Not sure if this helps, but as far as I know the west coast has better sea caves than the east coast. Actually, I was sightseeing near some on the Oregon coast just last week. Sea lions everywhere.

I hear California is popular for sea caving, too. Not sure how extensive they are - as far as I know sea caves don't have much length or complexity the way some other caves do.

Found this website which might give you some more info:
http://www.goodearthgraphics.com/virtca ... caves.html

:grin:
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Postby Plot Device » Nov 22, 2005 2:12 am

NZcaver wrote:Plot Device - yep, I've seen some of Maine's sea caves, so I know what you mean. :wink:

Not sure if this helps, but as far as I know the west coast has better sea caves than the east coast. Actually, I was sightseeing near some on the Oregon coast just last week. Sea lions everywhere.

I hear California is popular for sea caving, too. Not sure how extensive they are - as far as I know sea caves don't have much length or complexity the way some other caves do.

Found this website which might give you some more info:
http://www.goodearthgraphics.com/virtca ... caves.html

:grin:


Thanks, NZ (are you in New Zealand?) :)

After mulling over your post, I'm thinking the West Coast caves are made of rock that's more likely volcanic, so caves are probably more common there than on the East Coast. Also, you set off a few brain-cell explosions in my mind just now--the East Coast strata is not only NOT volcanic, it's also NOT convergent--no "folded" mountains exist on the East Coast. And my understsanding is that "folded" mountains will have the most elaborate cave systems of all. So perhaps the East Coast is definitely NOT the way to go with my story.

Anyone else have any input here?
In the field of fantasy literature, there is one story element which is cited by most scholars as being downright necessary to a worthwhile adventure plot: the main protagonist MUST journey into an underground lair of some kind.
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Postby NZcaver » Nov 22, 2005 2:27 am

Plot Device wrote:Thanks, NZ (are you in New Zealand?) :)

Nope, I'm living in Oregon right now - hence my visit to the Oregon coast last week. 8)


Coincidentally, I just noticed the "largest sea cave in the world - by volume" mentioned at the bottom of the website I posted. I went through that one in a boat once, back when I was a kid.

Yes, your description of the geologic features required for your script does not make me think of Maine - even though they do have many small sea caves there. Hopefully someone with a geology background can help you out more than I can. :?
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Postby Plethodon » Nov 22, 2005 8:13 am

have to be in United States? Look other places. Maybe bahamas or carribian islands or europe. Have lots of carbonate rock there. No rocks not need be folded to have lots of passage. bigges t cav in world in flat lay strata in Kentucky. Not near ocean, though. Maybe look up caves in Caucouses (country of Georgia). US coasts not good for big caves.
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Postby itabot » Nov 22, 2005 9:01 am

How about Hawaii. 8)
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Re: I'm a script writer in search of some info

Postby Dwight Livingston » Nov 22, 2005 9:02 am

Plot Device wrote:Hi! 8)

2) The story takes place in a cliff-top house beside the ocean, and lower down the cliff face, not far from the house, there is supposed to be a SMALL cave just above the tidal mark. (Small as in the size of a two-car garage.)



I think your small cave is no problem for the Maine coast. Here's from the Boston Grotto website . . .

Sandstone sea caves and erosional sea caves are found in several places along the Maine coast. The sandstone sea caves are in the downeast region just north of Eastport near Robinson. While the erosional sea caves are found in the granite that makes up much of the Maine coast line. These caves include such caves as Day Mountain Cave, Blowing Cave* and Gulliver's Hole*. The caving sea kayaker has a number places to find small sea caves on the many islands and in the rocky coves along the Maine coast.

. . . but the larger system you describe is a stretch for granite. Visit http://www.bostongrotto.org/Grotto/hend ... e.html#dow and see if you like what's there. An accurate description of the real caves in the area might support the fiction you want.

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Postby bigalpha » Nov 22, 2005 9:07 am

Florida actually has elaborate cave systems. Of course, they are almost all undewater. There are large amounts of carbonate rocks (good for caves) in florida. I think, for your purposes, you could use Florida if you wanted. It's very possible to get a sizable cavern, and winding passageways.
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Postby kvart » Nov 22, 2005 9:13 am

TAG!


That be Tennessee-Alabama-Georgia for you newbies!

:kaver:
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Postby Sean Ryan » Nov 22, 2005 2:32 pm

Doe sit have to be on the ocean? If you could move the setting to a lake or a river, that opens up all the folded-strata glory of the landlocked states.
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Postby Phil Winkler » Nov 22, 2005 2:45 pm

If you locate the house on the banks/cliffs of the Tennessee River or the Mississippi Revier you have all the large caves you need.

On the ocean I would go to the island of Sardinia and the Blue Grotto/Cave. It fits your description quite well.

Pick up a copy of Shibumi by Travanian. It has a great cave description and the hero even exits the cave via an undergound river and that pours out of the cliff down into a river in the Pyrennees.
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Postby hewhocaves » Nov 22, 2005 4:38 pm

Hi PD...

Caves can be found in many types of rock, but primarily in limestone. Some of the other types are lava flows, halite, gypsum, and even sandstone and conglomerate (those caves in those last two types usually aren't long).

You can find a map of the cave bearing rock in the US here:
http://www.caves.org/pub/journal/PDF/V64/v64n1-Veni.pdf
(it'll take a while to load the PDF... the map is near the back)

Now, you have to coordiate that with a part of the country that you want to put the story in.

Since you're already thinking of maine, I'm going to go along the assumption that you're looking for somewhere with vertical relief, remoteness and a temperate forest area.
You could still have it in maine, dig up some kind of conglomerate rock and say there is a fissure system underneath the house. Why people would build on the house is beyond me *shrug*, but it 'works', more or less.

You could also place it in the Alaska panhandle. It's darn cold up there, but it also fits the parameters.

You could place it in Michigan, on the northern limb. That can be remote, with vertical relief and has some karst there. Again, do a little research, find out what the rock is like there and use that as a guide.

Or, lastly, you could place it south of the border, in Mexico or Central America. Or on an island in the carribean - Cuba and Puerto Rico are nice.
Puerto Rico has the benefit of being part of the US. Theres all sorts of interesting things down there with the tropics and all that. You'll need to do your research to get it accurate, but the potential is there for something unique, storywise.

Plus, you can do a field trip to PR and write it off for taxes as 'research' (grin).

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Postby itabot » Nov 22, 2005 7:29 pm

hewhocaves wrote:Hi PD...

Caves can be found in many types of rock, but primarily in limestone. Some of the other types are lava flows, halite, gypsum, and even sandstone and conglomerate (those caves in those last two types usually aren't long).



Caves can also be found in dirt/claystone too, but like you said, aren't long.
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Postby cob » Nov 22, 2005 9:01 pm

Are you writing for cavers? If so you won't make very much money (*not enuf of us) and if you are writing for the general public... THEY WON'T KNOW! or care or that matter. A good story will carry itself. I wouldn't sweat it.
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Postby Plot Device » Nov 22, 2005 9:22 pm

NZcaver wrote:Yes, your description of the geologic features required for your script does not make me think of Maine - even though they do have many small sea caves there. Hopefully someone with a geology background can help you out more than I can. :?


Thanks, NZ. Your analysis is invaluable, and you replied so quick also. 8)
In the field of fantasy literature, there is one story element which is cited by most scholars as being downright necessary to a worthwhile adventure plot: the main protagonist MUST journey into an underground lair of some kind.
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