The question How would an immortal character amass a fortune? was posted on World Building but was migrated to Writing. Why? My understanding is that Writing is about how to write - techniques and others, not what to write. And certainly not for generating story ideas. One of the close reasons over at Writing is even:

This question appears to be off-topic because asking what to write or asking for help rephrasing a sentence or passage are both off-topic here, as such questions are very unlikely to help anybody else.

(emphasis mine)

I feel the question now is off-topic for that site and migration should be used only if that wouldn't be the case.

  • $\begingroup$ Migrations are not obligatory. Each stack has the ability to accept or reject a migration request. The fact that the request was granted suggests Writing's mods felt the question could be salvaged. The fact that it went on hold almost instantly suggests they're in the process of salvaging it as we speak. VTC isn't a punishment, it is a judgment. And as such it's an opportunity to repair and improve. $\endgroup$ May 14 '19 at 15:13
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    $\begingroup$ @JBH No Writing mod was involved in the migration. $\endgroup$
    – user
    May 14 '19 at 15:16
  • $\begingroup$ @aCVn I thought migrations weren't automatic? How'd the migration complete if no writing mod was involved? $\endgroup$ May 14 '19 at 15:18
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    $\begingroup$ @JBH the receiving site doesn't do anything to "accept" a migration. It's just another new question. $\endgroup$ May 14 '19 at 16:25
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    $\begingroup$ @MonicaCellio sonofagun, I thought it was a moderated process. Thanks! $\endgroup$ May 14 '19 at 16:56

Per our Help Center, "the goal of the site is to help you build your world, not to tell your story." Worldbuilding (on-topic) is about the rules and systems of a "world" (no matter its size, community or universe) wherein many stories can be told.

"Storybuilding" (off-topic) is about circumstances, actions, or plot. The moment you start asking about the actions of a character, you're storybuilding. It's theoretically possible that a question about an individual character is actually a question about the consistent application of world rules, but it's very rare (and the linked question most certainly did not meet that requirement).

The more people who are involved in the question, the more likely the question is about the consistent use of a world rule. For example, a question about how an army would counter a technology built upon a rule unique to the OP's world would be on-topic. Theoretically, a question about how a single spy would do so would also be on topic. But, even the population of a nation, if you ask (e.g.) "how can they increase their nation's GDP?" would be off-topic as Too Story-Based.

As a rule of thumb, the moment you ask about what a character should do or how a character can accomplish a goal, you're storybuilding and off-topic.


The question was migrated because it did not meet the expectations and requirements of this site and was judged to be more suitable on another.

  • $\begingroup$ The OP isn't asking about closure, but about the actual migration to Writing, I think. $\endgroup$
    – HDE 226868 Mod
    May 14 '19 at 15:15
  • $\begingroup$ @HDE226868, sorry, I missed the connecting sentence that brought the issue together with the proposed reason. $\endgroup$ May 14 '19 at 15:17
  • $\begingroup$ "The moment you start asking about the actions of a character, you're storybuilding" I agree with this. I think the question had merit but it would've needed to be cleaned up because most of the information about the character was irrelevant. We do frequently get questions that are similar enough to this one - What is the best way for a skeleton to impersonate human without using magic? is similar in terms of construction. Still, at best it's a reason to put it on-hold, not for migration, as it's still off-topic. $\endgroup$
    – VLAZ
    May 14 '19 at 16:27
  • $\begingroup$ I read the question and fail to discover any merit vis-a-vis worldbuilding. It might be an interesting question with potential for the right writers' forum. SE isn't the right forum! $\endgroup$
    – elemtilas
    May 15 '19 at 1:13
  • $\begingroup$ @elemtilas so, what about the skeleton one? In both cases it's "How does a character with X ability has to achieve Y". The two questions mentioned aren't the only ones on WB that follow the formula. X = single repeat of a day Y = make most money X = maybe immortality Y = verify immortality. The migrated question oddly focused more on who the character is but without these details it seems like it fit the pattern: X = immortal Y = make the most money. $\endgroup$
    – VLAZ
    May 15 '19 at 4:02
  • $\begingroup$ @VLAZ, I just voted to close that question as POB. However, perfect is a very hard goal to achieve. Take a moment to read my answer to another Meta question. And it's worth noting Elemtilas' comment in the comment chain. $\endgroup$ May 15 '19 at 4:43
  • $\begingroup$ @VLAZ -- What about it? The questions are of entirely different type. The formulas aren't the same except in the most shallow fashion (how can x do y): the immortal query focuses on a specific character and the narrative it acts within; the skeleton query focuses on generalities of behaviour rather than plot. I note that the skeleton query is in the VTC queue as being opinion based. I'd leave it open for reasons that JBH points out, though I certainly understand why others might close. Sometimes the devil is in the details: if the other question had focused on the general (cont.) $\endgroup$
    – elemtilas
    May 15 '19 at 11:16
  • $\begingroup$ ... i.e., matters of behaviour, thought process, knowledge base and the like as well as opportunities available to an immortal within a world rather than going down the road of narrative, I'd be much more inclined to leave that query open as well. The long and short of the issue is nature of the world queries = good; flow of story queries = bad. $\endgroup$
    – elemtilas
    May 15 '19 at 11:19
  • $\begingroup$ @elemtilas as I have repeatedly already acknowledged, the focus on the character is really a problem with the question. However, that doesn't mean that the question cannot be made into a "proper" question - again, removing the specific story details and a little bit of editing would make it as viable as some of the other questions I mentioned. Questions with a lot of answers and upvotes, which implies they are considered acceptable. Migrating the question denied it the opportunity to be edited into something proper. $\endgroup$
    – VLAZ
    May 15 '19 at 11:24
  • $\begingroup$ @VLAZ -- I rather think I just addressed that issue! Also, a well liked question isn't necessarily an on topic or valid question type for this forum. Keep in mind: this is Stack Exchange! This is not CBB or Reddit or some other open worldbuilding forum. There are specific rules here that specify what is allowable and what isn't. I've said before that SE is the single worst place for a worldbuilding forum to exist; but it's here and so we make the best of a bad situation. Case in point. $\endgroup$
    – elemtilas
    May 15 '19 at 11:29

Comment exchange

As it can be seen from the comments above, OP requested the post to be moved. It could have been closed on WB and reposted on writing (plot development is also not WB), but the result would have been the same.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ OP may have requested it but they should have been directed to post a new question. The current one is simply off-topic over at Writing and shouldn't have been put there $\endgroup$
    – VLAZ
    May 14 '19 at 12:37
  • $\begingroup$ @VLAZ -- Correct. Since Ash basically answered your question, The decision was made by a well meaning Mod over on Worldbuilding, we'd all best just wait for our well meaning Mod to explain. Looks like a rather minor lapse in judgement to me. $\endgroup$
    – elemtilas
    May 15 '19 at 1:15
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    $\begingroup$ A Lambent Eye's comment was perfectly fine but the OP misinterpreted it. And yeah, the OP did ask for migration but s/he didn't understand what Writing was about. It never should have been sent to Writing. $\endgroup$ May 18 '19 at 0:32

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