See also Category:Secondary Source Articles
For the purpose of this reference series, Secondary Source Articles, or entries, are those entries which are actual writings from the Visionary Universe. Thus these entries are written from the perspective and in the voice of actual residents within the Visionary Universe, and will vary in their form accordingly. These documents will be linked to specific sources, times and places within the setting and thus they are part of the actual creative content itself.
Secondary Source Articles provide an added layer of richness and depth to the Visionary Universe, thus providing additional opportunities for contributors to add to the setting, often in less restrictive means, thus giving them the ability to be more creative.
These articles have two basic purposes.
First, these articles allow for the incorporation of documents, journals, writings, reports, news articles etc. that are part of the actual Visionary Universe as a way of more deeply exploring the depth and richness of the setting. By providing these insights into the actual writings themselves, one can explore and learn of the Visionary Universe as those within it might. This allows for the incorporation of documents quoted for stories, documents that may have been generated concerning content of stories, and insights into story content not shown in primary source material.
Second, these articles being a focus provide a more open, less restricted means for contributors to add to the reference project. Primary Source Articles are those articles which are meant to, by and large, focus on the facts or canon of the setting, as shown in actual stories. While they allow for the addition of apocryphal or all-new supplementary material, those arenas are somewhat limiting to the creative contribution. Secondary Source articles allow for more diversity and creative freedom for those contributing in that it is not as important that the content focus on canon material, or revealed story content.
Comparison to Primary Source Articles Edit
Primary Source Articles are those articles which comprise the Chronicles and the Encyclopedia. Both these sources are written from the perspective of being 'within' the Visionary Universe, in other words written with a style such that the articles assume they are addressing actual individuals, places and events. While written from the perspective of being part of the VU, they are still written from the general omniscient narrator voice or style, which carries a high level of authority in what is shared, and thus most often held fast as canon. Accordingly, these entries contain all known facts and help to define the canon. While these types of articles are prevalent throughout this reference they are generally more limited or restrictive to writers. This is primarily because the articles should contain all known facts and history, and any addition to background material must fit fully within pre-planned continuity.
Secondary Source Articles are different. They are actually written in any given voice, in any given circumstances, but from the perspective of sharing more insight or knowledge, even if apocryphal, of any given event or individual or group. While again, such articles should not be created randomly, or without context, nor should they add unestablished information that contains no connection to the established part of the Visionary Universe, but they can have a certain amount of leeway as they are 'writings' from within the universe itself. Thus such articles, should contradictions arise, may be works at fault within, through error, misperception or lack of confirmation, thus not necessarily now incompatible with the canon of the Visionary Universe.
As an example, an Encyclopedia article on Magic would define and establish the known background, nature, and function of magic within the Visionary Universe. Original content may be included, but for it to remain part of the article, it needs to be agreed upon, held to and established as part of the canon.
However, a Secondary Source article which includes passages from an ancient text on magic, written by a fictional author, could contain vastly different theories unrelated to the actual mechanics of magic in the VU. Thus any discrepancies would later be explained as misunderstanding, errors, or mis-translations from the original text itself. Thus the text remains canon, but it loses some of its authority on the subject.
Since these articles comprise actual documents within the Visionary Universe their format will vary accordingly on a number of fronts. However, they should all still utilize the general Template for this article type.
All entries should start with an actual Inroduction section that gives background on the document, establishing its authorship, as well as the context of its recording, such as PC and localized dating, setting, etc. Sections should also be annotated where possible, including notations of whether the included text are random samplings from a broader work, entire sections, or the complete document.
As mentioned, because these documents will vary greatly in form and function, their format, voice, narrative style, language, etc. will also vary. The important thing to note in creating such documents is that there should be an internal consistency within the documents such that they hold together as artifacts of the Visionary Universe. For example, a newspaper article, or scientific report from within the Visionary Universe, should be written using similar style voice, narrative, supporting documention,layout, and form as such would carry in the real world. Arcane texts, personal journals, letters etc. all should reflect the norms of such writings. They should also reflect the setting and author of the document as well, thus using cultural or specific language as slang or idioms.
Examples of possible Secondary Source Articles, dealing with various elements within the Visionary Universe which in some way were published or distributed within the setting, include but are by no means limited to:
- Scientific Journal Articles which outline research on various topics
- Newspaper or Newsmagazine Articles which detail certain events or research on various topics
- Journals or personal writings of various characters
- Academic Texts published by varying means which share established knowledge on various topics
- Works of Fiction, created in the Visionary Universe
- Research files which investigate various topics
- Theoretical propositions or papers on various topics
Again, this is by no means a comprehensive list. Any article which is written from the perspective of being material generated within the Visionary Universe, which outlines, explains or adds to the depth of the Visionary Universe fits within this type of article.
- Template:Secondary Source Article for the outline template for all such entries
- Talk Pages for many articles will often include suggested Secondary Source Articles relating to those existing entries
- Contributors Central will include a list of requested Secondary Source Articles and a listing of referenced sources within the VU
- Primary Source Articles for a contrasting view of the other major subset of articles in this project
- Category:Content Terms for a listing of all articles which describe and outline content guidelines
- Category:Guidelines for a listing of all articles which outline policies and procedures in posting articles
- Category:Templates for a listing of all active and in use templates used in creating articles
- Contributors Central for listing of articles needing expansion, requested articles, drives and focus points for various sections