charamei: First, find out what your hero wants. Then just follow him. (NaNoWriMo: Follow The Hero)
An interesting wording/character observation:

He's still going by the time Tagalong and Flabbaduckarusa have joined him under the indigo-violet swirls of the captive Vortex.


This was originally in a scene where the Doctor has POV. In that context, its connotations are all about freedom and Time Lords controlling things they perhaps shouldn't.

I just moved it into a scene where the Master has POV. Barely changed a word, yet it's suddenly all about power.

Words: not the only things that matter.
charamei: (NRFtW: Red grins)
Editing: I finished Chapter 3 but haven't typed it up or line edited it yet. Haven't looked at Ch4 yet. I need the file open in front of me to do that one, so I can't do it on the train. And yesterday I was playing the Sims.

Well, I say 'playing'... more like 'rebuilding a lot from scratch because the original EAxian version is unplayably buggy'. It took me a few hours, but it was totally worth it. I only need to finish the pirate keep and I'll be ready to st-

-oh, right, ROW80. Sorry.

I started writing Regan and Meredith on the train. I'm probably closing on 250 words, though I won't know until I type up.

I love these guys. After seven years, they do half my work for me: once dialogue begins, doubly so. Counting down to Meredithian explosive sarcasm in 3, 2, 1...
charamei: (NRFtW: Red grins)

Round beginning January 3, 2011



Weeks 1 and 2: Finish editing First Steps, I mean it this time, good grief. (I'm at Chapter 3, which is the one I wrote with crippling writer's block. It shows, and wading through it is slowing me down quite a lot. Get through that and Ch4 will be plain sailing.)

Weeks 3 through 12: Plot (week 3) and write (weeks 4-12) the first half(ish) of Regan and Meredith's Book 1 at a minimum rate of 3,500 words per week. This works out to 500 words/day, but I write a lot better when I'm working in larger chunks. So.

At minimum, this should get me to 28k. If I write 500 words/day on the train and a larger chunk at weekends, I might be able to double that. But we'll see how it goes, especially during the five weeks that I'm doing the TV set design course.

Oh, yes, and I'm doing a TV set design course XD
charamei: (NRFtW: Red grins)
Just trying something out.

Quick-arse revelation scene )
/\/\/\

Quick-arse Lysia's arse scene )
charamei: NaNoWriMo: I research more for this than I ever did for my thesis. (NaNoWriMo: I Research)
Sudden realisation:

My fandom manifesto for [community profile] asexual_fandom is longer than my MA dissertation.

Ummm.

Probably just as well I'm out of higher education?

Whoooo!

Nov. 21st, 2010 10:16 pm
charamei: (Default)

First Steps:




19159 / 19159 words. 100% done!

Begun: December 2008 (!)
Finished: November 2010.

Just in under the two year mark! Let's see if I can get it edited by Christmas... and not take two years next time. (Which, in fairness. If not for two dissertations and my parents' divorce, this one wouldn't have taken two years either.)

For my next trick, I will finish Miasma...
charamei: Critical failure! (Rolled a 1)
It's time I admitted it. I have a problem.

Two years ago, my first drafts looked like this:
In which the Tenth Doctor mugs the Fourth Doctor. )

And my NaNo looked like this:

Regan and Meredith, Take 1. )

This year, my first drafts look like this:
Written on Hallowe'en, in fact, just one day before the horrors of NaNo began. Stops before spoilers. )

And my NaNo looks like this (excuse the typoes please, I'm mostly writing on a tiny netbook this year):
They've just got back from their son's funeral. )

So... yeah.

Somewhere in the past eighteen months (which, let's face it, have been horrific both emotionally and creatively) I have forgotten how to write.

Or at least, I've forgotten how to write fast. I've forgotten how to let the muse take me. The last time she did - and the first time in eighteen months - it was for a planning session, not a writing one..

I'm not giving up. I am well aware that I'm dragging myself out of a massive creative black hole; that I'm writing at all, and that NaNo is flowing for 1,667 words a day with little hesitation (though soem deviation and repetition - it is NaNo, after all), puts me miles ahead of where I was six months ago when 100 words a day on the train was like pulling teeth. Even if it's never quite the same again, writing is a skill and I can relearn it.

Just, it's time I stopped kidding myself. Two, even five years ago I was a much better writer, and I'm playing catch-up now.
charamei: First, find out what your hero wants. Then just follow him. (NaNoWriMo: Follow The Hero)
I finally got fed up of strewing a trail of paper everywhere I go, and got myself a Boogie Board.

OMG THIS THING IS SO LIGHT. Not only is it lighter than my netbook (not hard, my netbook's ancient), it's also probably lighter than the little notebook I cart around for jotting ideas in. It writes really fluidly, too, which gives me hope for a tablet PC with good handwriting recognition at some point in the future. And the stylus telescopes! How cool is that?

The only thing it needs is some way to selectively erase it, rather than having to wipe the whole board. I never selectively erase my endless mounds of paper either, though, so I can't really comment.

***

Had an odd moment of life affirmation at work when I copypasta'd a headline reading 'YOU ARE IN CONTROL' into the CMS. Thank you, Copywriter Guy.

***

After about six years (!), I think I've finally cracked the knotty problem of plotting Regan and Meredith's story!

I'd suspected for a while that Book 1 needed to be split into two, but never been able to see a way to make it work. Turns out this was because of one of my most common bugbears - wrong POV. That book's not Regan's story, or Meredith's, or even Ania's. It belongs to Beatrice.

Or... whatever her name ends up being. I'm not too keen on this naming scheme, except where the main characters are concerned. But that's a worry for another time and, if it comes to it, Find and Replace at the end.

***

Bah. The form for [community profile] sherlockbbc's friending meme is just too long to fill out.

***

I have a weird urge to try my hand at Randall and Hopkirk fic again. But, as usual, there are no conveniently unattached psychopaths running around in my head, and the attached ones are just not suited to the show. What I wouldn't give for a good overdramatic, buttfuck-crazy guy/gal to stroll into my head with flamethrower right now...

...AHA. See, reverse psychology does work on the subconscious.

Argh

Sep. 8th, 2010 07:28 am
charamei: Critical failure! (Rolled a 1)
Just once, I'd like to write something and for it to not be terribly worded/an aimless ramble/completely flat.

It feels like it's been ages since I made something I was even a little proud of.
charamei: NaNoWriMo: I research more for this than I ever did for my thesis. (NaNoWriMo: I Research)
The birth of this year's NaNovel, a ten-step process:

  1. Ugh, another humid summer. Yuck. Humidity is evil.

  2. Some subconscious connection between 'humidity', 'fog', 'pollution' and the Greek μιασμα, which means pollution in a moral sense but has included in that definition a sense of pervading doom hanging over a person/family/city. The House of Atreus has a μιασμα, for example.

  3. Evil Ancient Greek humidity! Clearly I am a genius.

  4. Need a protagonist... oh, hello, protagonist. I shall call you Hero. Here, have a Mentor. He's a philosopher and probably also bumming you, this being classical Greece and all.

  5. Wonder what's causing the fog...?

  6. Volcanoes? There must have been an Athenian colony on a volcanic island by the height of the Delian league, right? *researches*

  7. ...no, Hero, your Athenian-style democracy does not have a king, and he is certainly not doing his own mother. You moron. Why are you the Hero again?

  8. AND WHAT'S THE FOG DOING THERE?

  9. Ohhh! My three alternate plots all join up into one coherent narrative if I just sort of do that instead of this...

  10. Hero, you are boring and an idiot and shall henceforth be relegated to Support Bumsex. Mentor, you have been promoted.

Actual words written before I decided to do this for NaNo: 34 (will not be counted in November)
Current first words: 'Rosy-fingered dawn'
First word should be: 'Fog'. The first word of ancient poetry is always the most important, after all*
Number of people likely to interact with a wine-dark sea: Three, currently
Arming sequences: Prooobably none
Number of times I have confused [personal profile] humble_yoghurt by rambling incoherently about Greeks and evil fog: 3
Number of words in English for fog: About ten, maybe twenty if you stretch your definitions a bit
Number of words in Greek for fog: One (ομιχλη)

*Iliad: 'wrath'. Odyssey: 'man'. Aeneid: 'arms' (in the sense of 'weaponry'). Propertius, elegy: 'Cynthia'. Ovid, elegy: er, 'arms' again. Insert fangirling of Ovid's wilful and intentional subversion of the literary conventions of his time here.
charamei: (TSR: Evil Goo)
My, but my characters are active at the moment. I've got Irien fangirling Jo's character Peren, Tranan and Pat laughing at her from the safety of one of Tranan's inpenetrable boxes, three Time Tots soldiering bravely on to the conclusion of First Steps in the face of ghastly prose and incoherent plotting, Charles serenading Dora, Vortigern demanding to know why he can't be a villain and in a corner, mostly separate from the madness, Regan and Meredith redrawing their world map again.

Therefore, fic!

Title: Delayed Reaction
Rating: PG
Fandom: Evanya (RP)
Genre: Character sketch
Characters: Irien
Wordcount: 121
Author's notes: Evanya is the world that my RP group's current campaign is set in. Irien's my character, and this is just a random bit of character-building for her.

For those not familiar with the campaign, it's worth explaining the following:
- Irien's mother was the court spymaster, 'the Shadow', and faked her death when Irien was eight.
- She died shortly before this scene, and Irien is now the Shadow in her place.

/\/\/\


Nobody could understand why Irien didn't cry when her mother died. )
charamei: NaNoWriMo: Yay, quantity! (NaNoWriMo: Quantity)
A selection of notes from the original handwritten latest 1,000-ish words of First Steps:

***


"I don't know,” Flabbaduckarusa says. “The author's lost the plot again."

"Oh." Snail frowns, trying to think. "Well, I suppose you need to communicate some key information to me, then we can go and look for Tagalong. Corridor scenes, donchaknow."

"OK then."

***


[ARGH]

***


Waaaaay too adult.

...

[Dead doll]

***


Lots of decent stuff here, but it needs mixing up more: guilt WITH introspection, not after kthxbai

***


WTF

***



And that's it. The very last thing written in this notebook is 'WTF' in red ink.

So, you know.

This chapter, ugh. Hates it, precious, we does.
charamei: Tomorrow may be hell, but today was a good writing day, and on the good writing days nothing else matters. (NaNoWriMo: Good Writing Day)
I keep wondering why I'm still writing First Steps. Every time I get inspired for it I seem to end up derailed by more important things (essay deadlines, family stuff, you name it), and the stubborn need to finish the damn thing has been preventing me from concentrating on anything else. Original novels aside, there's a Four/Romana oneshot - probably not more than 4-5k when finished - that's sitting on my hard drive and dying to be finished...

And yet, I can't stop writing it. It's not dead, it's just been in a couple of nasty accidents.

And today, it squeezed my hand and said my name and hauled itself off life support once more, bless its soul. [personal profile] aleas_iacta was cringing about the burns scene before I wrote it, too, the poor dear...

Next up: another gorram corridor scene, albeit a short one. Then, dead babies.

(Mental note: find a way to get the word 'pustules' in somewhere when rewriting.)

/\/\/\


For my own future reference, the way to turn the NumPad back on when Ubuntu's inaccessibility* feature decides to be stupid is System -> Preferences -> Keyboard -> Mouse Keys -> Uncheck the magically self-checking box called 'Pointer can be controlled using the keypad'. NO IT BLOODY WELL CAN NOT.

*Whyyyyyyyyy do I have to have accessibility mode turned on to use the language switcher? I'm not blind, deaf, arthritic, or any other form of disability, I just want to write in Greek occasionally!

ETA: It occurs to me how appropriate this icon actually is tonight. Tomorrow may very well indeed be hell.

D'oh!

Feb. 27th, 2010 01:07 am
charamei: (Nano: It makes sense)
I have just realised why I've been so hungry this week.

It's because now it's warm enough to stay outside for an hour or so without becoming hypothermic, I've been doing exactly that - on my swing. Which constitutes physical exertion, Charamei you moron, so no, you can't stick with your winter regimen of doing little and eating less. More calories out = more calories in.

Yeesh.

Still, at least it's paying off, if by 'paying off' you mean 'the muse has come out of hibernation and dumped three new story ideas on me in a week' or 'and now the writing bug seems to be waking up too, yay.'

(My calluses are resurfacing nicely after spending the winter under gloves. With luck, I won't even get that horrible blister that always pops up on my left hand. As for the other set of blisters, no sign of them, either.)
charamei: First, find out what your hero wants. Then just follow him. (NaNoWriMo: Follow The Hero)
You.

Yeah, you, the three Time Tots hiding behind the sofa from the Thing. Come out and talk to me.

Seriously, kids. I've restarted Chapter Three four times because you can't decide who's got POV, how Tagalong escapes from his Loom, or at what precise time Snail comes back down the stairs. And just when I finally think we've got it all sorted out, you wander off and don't even bother to leave the plot behind, so I have to scramble to reconstruct it from scratch.

Flabbaduckarusa. HERBIVORES ARE IMPORTANT. Stop trying to erase the plot point, sweetie, mmkay?

Snail. Work out a way to get your necessary character development in, willya? You don't have to do it all by yourself, you know, your brother's right there.

Tagalong. I want a detailed, timestamped chart of your position relative to the Thing's, on my desk by tomorrow morning. No buts. No bloodstains. No bullying the others into doing it for you.

And you, Time Lord Dogsbody #1, come back here so the furious NPCs can exposit at you.

First Steps is over a year old now, guys. I have Chester waiting in the wings, not to mention Four and Romana hacking through the bath-house with a machete. If I have to write a sentence a day, so help me, I will finish this.

But it'll go a lot faster if y'all help.

Are we ready? Good! Let's go, then.


Who knew? Apparently there really is no problem in sci-fi that can't be solved by the addition of a smug talking computer.

(Okay, so strictly speaking it only solves Flabbaduckarusa/Braxiatel's section, but since he's the one who's been causing most of the problems, I'm happy.)
charamei: Skience! (DW10: Science)
It has recently come to my attention that the single most confusing three-dimensional shape in the multiverse is a pair of trousers.

I'm going to end up writing fic about this, I just know it.

(I defeated them, though! I am now the proud creator of two pairs of snuggly, warm and not-even-the-tiniest-bit-in-holes pyjamas.)
charamei: Start writing and keep writing! (NaNoWriMo: Start Writing and Keep Writin)
Dear Chester:

I know you're excited about all the wondrous things you've suddenly started noticing about your world, and you're eager to tell me all about them, not to mention the legal system, the government and that elusive religion. I think it's great that you're finally mature enough to be able to tell me whether your world uses steam or not, whether you have electricity or not, and where you live (although, seriously, the rent on that mousehole's a bit high, isn't it?). I'm even more pleased that you've got your opening scene all plotted out, and that you've even managed to slide a couple of Chekhov's Guns in there, nice and early.

But, Chester, when I sat down yesterday and said, "Right, worldbuilding time!" ...Sweetie, I wasn't talking to you. I was talking to the Fifth Doctor, and Nyssa, and Nerys and Police Guy and Dead Witness #2. This is because, Chester, the deadline for that contest is next Monday, and at this moment in time I need their worldbuild much, much more than I need yours. Hell, two of them don't even have names yet, the third is randomly Welsh, and most importantly, I can't refine their plot until I know how their planet works.

I will get back to you, I promise. I love your story and I love your world, even more so with all the new stuff you keep telling me about. But please, for the next few days, stop bugging me. Take a leaf out of Tranan's book: nobody's seen him since the competition started, not even Unam or Talla. Go and travel your world, see the sights, and bring me back photos, because I will be fascinated.

Just not right now.

Love,
Your friendly neighbourhood author.
charamei: Ten grins: funny is like this (DW10: Funny Is Like This)
So apparently, the 830th most popular girl's name in the US in 1921 was Concepcion (page 39).

Oh, character naming days, you never cease to amuse me.

(This tag is incorrect. The novel's working title is now The Memories of Chester Snitterfield.)


ETA: And the 599th most common male name was Gaylord. Oh deary deary me...

charamei: (Default)
  • Characters A and B are male and gay, and red herrings*. I guess I could make them female and gay?

  • Character C is secretly manipulating everyone and must therefore be male, because if he were to become female that would be even more of a feminism fail than I'm already creating with this story.

  • Character D, the protagonist, is male and also fundamentally manipulative, with a tendency towards passive-aggression and running away from his problems. See comments on Character C.

  • Character E is female and evil.

  • Character F is female and has no personality or function except Protagonist Support. Frankly, I don't know where she came from and she'll probably be written out.

  • Character G was female, but had no function that could not be amalgamated into Character E and make a better story. To make matters worse, I'm considering having Character C stuff her into the fridge early on, to show how much he changes once he gets his old memories back.



Jesus Christ. I had so many female characters in Saril that I had to forcibly remind myself to make new ones male to even it out (OH HAI THAR ETHELBERT!), and this one looks set to go the other way entirely.

Looks like the gay guys may have to become lesbians. Because seriously, as much as writing it with them all male wouldn't bother me? I would not read this novel.


*I have an urge to make Juliusa a literal red herring now. Not sure what his her true form being a red herring says about his her personality, but the idea is kind of funny from a meta point of view.

/\/\/\


How do I love Sheldon? Let me count the ways...

No, no, not that one.

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