February 5, 2017 · 2:49 pm
Life is busy. That’s an extreme understatement. Over the last sevenish months I haven’t been making any time for writing, which was extremely unfortunate. So as my added fourth goal for 2017, I vowed to spend one hour a week on writing. I didn’t do so well through January (I wrote a little bit here and there near the end of the month, plus built that chatbot, which took quite a bit of writing initially). But it’s the beginning of a new month, which means time for a new start.
I started out by writing down an idea I had for a 10 minute play. There’s a theater event called 10×10 here in Thunder Bay which I went to a writing workshop for back in 2015. I didn’t submit anything that year (I was dealing with sorting out my NaNoWriMo blob around that time) and hadn’t really thought much about it since then. But then I had a random idea from work that I wanted to get onto paper. It’s way too late to work on anything for this year (the deadline was back in January), but maybe I’ll get this into shape in time to submit it for next year. We’ll see! It will definitely need a lot of work (and an ending!)
After that, I also finally tweaked my Imezza and Faeriia docs to reflect the work I did on Imezzan magic back in December. Faeriia was an easy edit – the magic on that world will not use the basic elements at all now so I just had to take any reference to that idea out. Imezzan magic is going to be the one dealing with the elements now because it’s way more appropriate there.
I have to say, I’m very happy to have taken the time to do this writing, even though it’s really not a whole lot.
I think my next project is to work on a short story. There’s a local writing contest coming up that I would like to enter. And that would go hand in hand with my goal to write some polished short stories this year!
Filed under Writing
Tagged as #WritingDay, 10x10, blob, Faeriia, Imezza, magic, magic systems, NOWW, play, Worldbuilding, writing, writing contest
May 20, 2016 · 5:00 pm
I am super proud of myself – this week I actually finished editing and organizing my notes on Faeriia from my NaNoWriMo blob! When I first started this process of consolidation, I said that I was falling in love with this setting all over again. This is still so true; this setting has a history and characters that are very alive in my mind. Of course it helps that several stories I’ve come up with over the years have all found a home in Faeriia. I may abandon my goal for this year to edit my NaNoWriMo 2012 book in favour of either editing the NaNoWriMo 2011 novel (which is now set in Faeriia) or of writing something totally different (again set in Faeriia).
The final Google document is 24 pages long now. Remember the comparison? Imezza is 9 and City of the Dead is 8. That also makes me want to work on Imezza again, fleshing the setting’s history out a little more (although that’s not super necessary; if I write some stuff in the setting, I’m sure it will slowly flesh itself out).
Oh yeah, thinking about goals, finishing this small editing project means that I have officially finished one of my goals for 2016! Goal #9 was to take apart my NaNoWriMo blob, and finishing up with Faeriia means I did just that! This took me a little bit longer to accomplish than I thought it would, but it is done! I guess it’s another reason to be proud of my week. 😀
While I think I’m on track to finish a few other goals, it’s unfortunately the only one I’ve accomplished to date. I haven’t worked on Tears of the King since early May, so it’s time to get back to that.
May 13, 2016 · 4:19 pm
I was going to spend the afternoon reading, but realized it’s been about three weeks since I posted a writing update and about five to six months since I actually wrote on a Friday. I have about an hour, so why not write?
I haven’t been actively working on anything in awhile. Of course I still have Tears of the King on the go. But I’ve also got to finish editing and organizing my notes on Faeriia from the NaNoWriMo blob. So that’s what I decided to work on today. And I’m writing to the music of Cool Spot (for about twenty minutes anyway) and after that Castle Crashers (but only about thirty minutes worth).
I managed to get through three pages worth of notes during that hour (and found one page that should have been counted off the total back in March), leaving me with only 12 pages of stuff left to go! It felt good to revisit this world after all this time. And even better to get back to #WriteFridays! 🙂
March 19, 2016 · 12:49 am
Okay, I’m really proud of myself. Remember when I said I had taken the NaNoWriMo blob apart? At that time, I said my next step was to consolidate all my notes on Faeriia. Well, this week I started to do just that!
All told, I had about 28 pages of notes on Faeriia, and this week I’ve managed to edit and organize about 12 of those pages. And let me tell you: I’m falling in love with this setting all over again! Prior to 2015’s NaNoWriMo, I had a Google Doc on the setting that was ridiculously vague and only 2 pages long. It’s now 14 pages long, encompassing some stuff on the world’s history, various religious beliefs, the world’s magic system (thank you again, Brandon Sanderson – you’re blog posts on magic systems helped me with this once again during NaNoWriMo!), dragons, and daimons.
Still to be sorted: more history (specifically some big wars), the social organization of some of the denizens of Faeriia, and some notes on other denizens of the world, and a few notes on specific characters. I don’t know how much time I’ll have for this stuff, but hopefully I can get it done in the next two weeks!
For comparison, my Imezza document on Google Drive is 9 pages long (but I haven’t thought through the world’s history in the same way as I did with Faeriia) and City of the Dead is 8 pages long (I have some history of the world, but not as detailed as Faeriia’s). So I guess Faeriia is currently my most detailed world. But it’s also the world that several older stories I’ve had from the past fit into, so in a way it’s no wonder it’s so much more detailed.
Oh, I also wanted to mention that tonight was Write NOWW, a panel that was held at a local coffee shop. My brother was the moderator, and it featured blogger Dahl Botteril, comic artist Bry Kotyk, and blogger Leah Wellwood (who are all local people). It was interesting to hear from different local bloggers and my brother did a fantastic job moderating (as usual!)
February 6, 2016 · 5:39 pm
Life continues to be a whirlwind, so I don’t have much writing progress to report at the moment. I haven’t done any more work on Tears of the King since last week. What I have been doing is trying to untangle my NaNoWriMo blob. Thus far I’ve made it through 18 pages; only 68 to go! Once it’s untangled, my main priority is going to be getting the notes for Faeriia organized in a Google doc. At this point I’ve been cutting out the Faeriia notes and shoving them into another, more organized document. So hopefully once everything’s in there it’ll be a lot easier to edit and reorganize everything.
Oh, I got some exciting news earlier this week: I’m going on a work trip at the end of the month for a few days! Of course, that’s going to make everything all the more hectic as I try to fit in finishing a few work articles and hopefully another interview.
So for the immediate future, I think I’m going to continue trying to untangle the NaNoWriMo blob. I’m hoping to have the Faeriia notes on Google Drive by the end of the month!
November 28, 2015 · 7:35 pm
I actually did some writing on a Friday!
This week has been so full of writing, it’s kind of ridiculous! I wrote a stupid amount last weekend. I think it was almost 5000 words before midnight, then another almost 5000 after midnight. I started Saturday about 13,000 words behind, and ended Sunday only about 5000 words behind. And as of Thursday, I ended the day with 43,399 words written; the target for the day was 43,333. And yesterday I was about 1000 words ahead of target. Seriously, check out these stats, it’s ridiculous!
So what did I write this last week? As I already mentioned, I finished the Grief Project draft. Then I went on to write a rough draft of a story for a friend. His dog, who was rather old, wasn’t doing so well and my friend thought he’d have to put him down. I don’t know if I’ll be able to give him this story, but it was written for him. Well, I definitely won’t be able to give it to him as it is because it’s a very rough draft. I set it in City of the Dead because that seemed appropriate.
After that, I really had to move away from stories about grief and pets. Another friend told me Starcraft 2: Legacy of the Void was out. He started talking to me awkwardly about it, but didn’t want to spoil anything so I decided I had to go play it. With my head firmly in science fiction mode, I turned away from Faeriia and another untitled world (I’m calling it the Centaur World right now. It’s the world the screenplay I started for Script Frenzy takes place in) and started working on a science fiction setting instead. This was helped by me rewatching Firefly as well. I wrote down a random scene I’ve had in my head, which I have to admit, writing story makes the words go faster than working on world building stuff. From there I decided to write another story for Apocalypse Madness (it’s set on Faeriia and called “Scourge of the Seas“). And then I decided to write this blog post as part of the word count because I was just rambling otherwise.
I have to admit, writing 50,000 words of mostly world building is really, really hard to do. Around the point where I started writing more stories (so I’m talking “Scourge of the Seas” and the other scene), I felt like there was no more world building I could do. I know there are lots of holes in the settings that I’ll need to think through. But right now I’m sitting at the end of an 80+ page document that’s basically just a big blob of text. I tried to make notes and comments on the side of things that need doing. But I know the way that I work, and right now I need to print out this document and go through it, organizing all the world building bits into their own documents to actually see exactly what I have and what I’m missing. So here I am now, sitting with less than 3500 words to go to win, and I don’t honestly have anything in particular to write about (which is why I decided to write this blog post there, even though it sort of feels like cheating). The sheer amount of world building stuff I’ve done this NaNoWriMo is awesome – I’ve got one world up to the point where I can easily start writing stories in it, even if it’s missing things, and two more (well, one world and one “setting”) in the works. I’m super glad to be fixing some of the issues I had with my story ideas (namely the problem that almost all of them were stuck in world building). But it’s super hard to remember everything that I’ve done these last few weeks (especially when I’m typing like a maniac to get caught up and jumping from setting to setting as it strikes my fancy). I definitely think, if I ever decide to do NaNoWriMo again, I’m going to write a novel rather than another writing blob.
So apologies to everyone. I keep saying I’m going to get caught up with your blogs, but realistically that’s not going to happen until after NaNoWriMo is over in a few days. So wish me luck as I finish off the remaining 3000 or so words I have to write, and I’ll talk to you after the 1st!
Filed under Worldbuilding, Writing
Tagged as #WritingDay, Apocalypse Madness, blob, City of the Dead, Faeriia, Grief Project, NaNoWriMo, Script Frenzy, short stories, short story, Werewolves etc, Worldbuilding, writing
November 21, 2015 · 7:01 pm
I still don’t like how it sounds, but it’s the truth – I didn’t write yesterday at all. I actually haven’t written anything since the 17th, putting me 13,305 words behind where I need to be. So time to get to work on that!
A couple of really exciting things happened this week:
- I got to interview local artist Chris “Merk” Merkley for TBPL Off the Shelf! Merk’s interview is going to be #25! It’ll be posted in December (I’m thinking of switching things to the first week of the month, rather than leaving it on the second).
- I finally joined NOWW. My brother is one of the board members, and I’ve been going to their events, so I kind of thought I should probably join. I was thinking about joining a few months ago, but finally got around to it yesterday.
- I’ve had Merlin for a year!!! Exactly a year ago today I went to Animal Services and picked him out (or more accurately, he picked me out!) I didn’t bring him home until the 24th though (I was still living at my parents’ at the time and didn’t want their cat getting mad at having another cat around; after the weekend, my parents told me to bring him anyway because they’d only be in the same house for a week and wouldn’t have to be together at all).
So on to the writing!
Earlier this week I spent a lot of time worldbuilding Ayvlin’s World. I even managed to give the world a name! I was thinking something along the lines of “emotion,” because emotions have become so important to the way the world works and its magic. but I couldn’t find any words I liked for that (I spent a lot of time last weekend on Google Translate looking for words in other languages). But then I decided that this really is the fae’s world, so why not name it for them? After a bit of research and trying out a lot of different letter combinations attacked to “fae,” I decided to call it Faeriia (pronounced “fay-rye-a” for anyone who cares. Those who don’t, feel free to pronounce it any way you want to). I wanted to call it Faeria (with just the one i), but i discovered this game and decided not to. I was also tossing around the idea of calling it “Faerin,” but thought that was a little too close to D&D’s Faerun. So now that that decision has been made (and I’m quite happy with the name – I’ve been calling the world that all week and find it fitting), I’m going to switch the category for the world from “Ayvlin” to “Faeriia.”
After I came up with the name, I felt like I was “done” with the setting, which is part of why I haven’t been working on the NaNo “blob” this week (but also because I seem to be ridiculously busy. I also started reading a novel this week because I hadn’t read anything in almost a month!!!) But after reflecting on the setting for a bit, I realized there are still a few major areas that need work. So that’s my plan for tonight – try to tackle the 13,000 word deficit while developing Faeriia a bit more. Wish me luck!
November 16, 2015 · 1:15 am
I know, I know, it doesn’t have the same ring to it. But I didn’t have any time to write on Friday this week, so I ended up writing on Saturday instead.
On Saturday I also went to a NaNoWriMo halfway party! It was a little early (being the 14th rather than the 15th), but still roughly the middle of the month. The party took place at one of our libraries. A few people got together to chat about our progress. A lot of the stories sound like a lot of fun! I hope everyone manages to finish them. 🙂
Unfortunately I am still behind on NaNoWriMo. On Saturday I had 14,438 words written, putting me behind by almost 10,000 words (8,895 behind to be exact). I wasn’t going to write anything today either, but I got the worldbuilding bug while I was driving and had to get some ideas down. I’m now up to 17,443 words, which is still behind (I should be at 25,000 words by day 15) but slowly closing the gap (now I’m only 7,557 words behind!) Other than a brief random idea I wanted to write down for a future possible science fiction story, the entire week’s been spent worldbuilding. I want to continue with writing the Grief Project, but as of right now I feel like I don’t have the time to be crying. (On Saturday night I was switching between writing the blob and preparing for a possible interview, so crying while writing really wasn’t a good plan. Then today I was writing for a bit then needed to switch gears fast for my other job, so again crying while writing wasn’t a good plan). Hopefully before the end of the month though I’ll be able to get back to it!
In the meantime, like I said: worldbuilding. I’m still working on Ayvlin’s world (which at this point does not have a proper name). I wrote down some of the history of the world, which directly tied into the human’s beliefs. I also hashed out the Fae’s history, which was a lot of fun. I’ve been leaving comments to myself in the Word document’s margin, but even so it’s getting a bit harder to worldbuild like this – the writing blob is literally a blob of text, so it’s tough to remember what I’ve specifically written about some things. I wish I had time to lay it out more like my documents for Imezza and City of the Dead. But that’ll have to wait until after NaNoWriMo is over.
I did run into another problem in the world though: magic. The fae’s magic is shaping up a little too much like magic in City of the Dead, which is a problem. So now I’ve got to work through that as well as the whole Fae vs screenplay aliens. Although at this point I’m sort of thinking that I’ll come back and deal with the screenplay aliens after I have the Fae all worked out.
I also need to go back and figure out how some of the other things that have become part of this world fit. I had worked out how I could have something demon-like in the world (because the original RPG that involved Ayvlin had another character who was half-demon). But now the entire history I worked out this weekend did not involve them at all, so I’m going to have to go back and see if/how they’ll fit with the new ideas.
So that’s it for now. Good luck to everyone else who is participating – there’s still two weeks to go!
Also, apologies to everyone – life is busy and I haven’t had a chance to go and visit anyone else’s blog over the last week. I will be catching up with everyone hopefully during the next few days!
November 7, 2015 · 12:43 am
What a great start to this #WriteFriday: I was ridiculously behind on my NaNoWriMo blob (I’m not writing a novel, so I’ve been calling it a blob). Behind to the tune of being on Day 4 with only 1323 words. But as of midnight on Day 6 (so 11:59pm on Day 5), I had written 4,346 words, bringing my total up to 5669! I’m still behind a bit (on Day 6 the goal is to write 10,000 words), but at least I’m not nearly as far behind as I was.
So what have I written in my so-called writing blob? The first thing I wrote (which was on Day 3) was a random dream I’d had the night before. I don’t know what, if anything, I’ll do with it yet. But it was neat and I wanted to record it somewhere; the blob seemed as good a place as any to write it. Also on Day 3, I sat down and wrote a story for Apocalypse Madness (this was the story I mentioned on my ridiculously late October 30th #WriteFriday update). Day 4 saw me worldbuilding so I could fit Ayvlin into another world I’d already thought up (which I also mentioned on that last update). This ended up actually much easier than I originally thought it would be back in Grand Marais when I thought it up. The world actually does fit her and her story. It even fits the other characters that were with her in that roleplaying adventure. So I’ve mainly been working on that world, although I had a brief tangent into yet another world (I realized I have never written any of the ideas down for it and decided to remedy that immediately). I ended up working through a couple of things I’ve been struggling with on this world (“Do dragons belong here and what are they like?” being the main question I managed to finally answer). I also managed to tie in another world with this one. As I was worldbuilding, I started to realize that the second world, which I had long thought didn’t belong with this one, actually did fit quite nicely. So that was awesome! It’s looking like this world is going to be my most “stereotypical fantasy world,” even though it’s already got things going on to make it anything but stereotypical!
I did run into an unexpected problem though. Back in the summer of 2010 (which is just after I finished with the class I started this blog for, but way before I started using this blog for writing), I took a screenwriting course from Gotham Writers Workshop, during which I started writing a screenplay. The screenplay was a crazy science fiction adventure which I was having fun writing. Unfortunately after the class ended, life got in the way and I never did finish a first draft. But it had two science fiction races which I really, really liked the idea of. Hilariously, the faerie creatures that live on what I’m currently calling “Ayvlin’s World” have ended up an awful lot like one of the science fiction races. I’m currently not sure what, if anything, I need to do about that, because the similarities that they both have suit them both.
So after writing a bit more (about 600 words), I went to bed, thinking I’d have more time for writing today. But then I found myself at 11:39 having not written anything else for the NaNoWriMo blob all day (I had hoped to have another 4000 word marathon to get caught up with where I should be for word count). Between what I’d written earlier and those twenty minutes I managed to crank out a total of 1,380 words, bringing my total for the day up to 7049. I’m still about 3000 words behind where I should be (day 6 should put you at 10,000), but at least I’m not falling too far behind now.
For those twenty minutes (and about twenty minutes past midnight), I also did something extremely difficult: I started writing the Grief Project. For anyone who doesn’t remember, what I’ve been calling the Grief Project is the project I was going to write after Tink passed away last summer. But the grief was too raw and I wasn’t able to do it right away. So I put it aside, much longer than I had planned to. The grief is no longer so raw but it is still present; I’m not going to lie, I started crying a few times while writing it.
I don’t know what I’m going to do with the Grief Project (if anything). But it’s well past time I finally got to it. NaNoWriMo (and this NaNoWriMo in particular) is actually in some ways the perfect place to tackle it because I can let it be whatever it wants to be. Especially since it’s just part of my writing blob (which means I don’t even care if the Grief Project falls short of 50,000 words because it’ll just be part of the bunch of writings I’m doing this year).
Good luck to everyone else who is participating this year!
Filed under Writing
Tagged as #WritingDay, Apocalypse Madness, blob, cat, cats, Faeriia, Gotham Writers Workshop, Grief Project, NaNoWriMo, novel, science fiction, screenplay, Tink, Worldbuilding, writing