lovablestories: a tree surrounded by glowing fireflies (patf: bayou)
2017-04-24 12:33 pm

(no subject)

 You know I bet if I wrote down my thoughts as often as I had something to share (what fandom is to me, how I develop characters from other fandoms, how there's at least two different approaches, etc, etc.), I'd have a lot more written up.

Yeah. Nope. My mind's too much of a whirl to make sense. It's completely calm and focused. And a whirl of maddening running, like a hamster trapped in a wheel who has no idea where she's going. I could ramble about my thoughts but I haven't got the coherence to make sense of it.
lovablestories: (al: well that's fun)
2017-03-22 06:39 am

Monsters & Heroes

"..pointing to some deep need in the human psyche to objectify inner states as metaphors and living symbols, and thus disavow the "bad" part of the self within, to deny complicity and find external scapegoats to blame, to exculpate through means of displacement and externalization---an existential need to defend the self from the self, a need that has always existed and will always exist. The monstrous metaphor as object becomes the critical touchstone for communal renewal and for individual redemption, the sacrificial victim, the scapegoated emissary from the unconscious. And thus the monster takes on all the power of that which is denied the self, all that which is repressed..." (172, Monsters: Evil Beings, Mythical Beasts, and All Manner of Imaginary Terrors).

(But what do the monsters feel?)

So I'm trying to finish a book on monsters (though the subject is broader than just categorizing or discussing monsters), and I realized some thing and had a lot of extensive thoughts about pov and how I conceptualize the idea of scapegoating -- which I think is weird, but that's only because anything bad are activities/behaviors/povs -- that make me feel sick and the idea that someone would actually think or act is such a manner is more bewildering than how I imagine a monster would be. Which essentially boiled down to: I comprehend the pov of heroes and monsters much better than people.

Like I can understand animalistic rage or simplistic necessity of survival (e.g. thinking of what to eat and making it every day every couple hours is tedious! hence why photosynthesis would easier, supplemented by human-style food when I'm in the mood to make and eat something). And I can understand the desire to protect and encourage goodwill and wholeness and health for everyone. (It's a little more nuanced -- basically, the idea that people don't automatically want others to be fulfilled, healthy, protected, and safe baffles me. Or to a more precise example, that people wouldn't automatically think all children deserve to have a space to be imaginative and organic and authentic in discovering who they are without discrimination, micro-aggressive, racism, sexism, and other -isms authentically baffles me.) And the idea that people could not (and do not, I presume) think that is more frightening to me than a monster.

This is why I prefer to write about demons, and probably why my humans can come across as "too good" and villains/antagonists baffle me. Until I realized that antagonists can have various personalities, i.e. they don't have to think bad things (and by bad I mean, things involving abuse, racism, discrimination, cruelty, torture, rape, pedophilia, etc., not promiscuity, or a temper, or whatever is considered actions/thoughts that should be repressed and removed from humanity).

To extend on that, I'll add that one thing odd about scapegoating is that, if say a person's temper is bad enough that it should be scapegoated, wouldn't it be more beneficial to redirect that energy in a positive way? Instead of putting the blame on something/one else?

I don't know. Animals make sense. Monsters make sense. Heroes make sense. But humans...people...what are you? (But then, I'm human...but I still don't understand how people can authentically not wish the best for others. Like I can understand having faults and internal -isms. I don't expect people to be giving and kind all the time. But like...I don't know. How could you not want what's best for others? Like it's not about always being nice, but how could not want the best for others? Sorry, I'm repeating myself. I'll stop. That's all.)
lovablestories: a rainbow over a blue ocean (write: rainbow)
2017-02-11 01:55 pm

Writing 0010: Write A Day

Last month, instigated the Every Day Challenge, I did two writing projects every day: 1. to write 100 words, and 2. to share my work. While I was unsuccessful in raising money, I wanted to continue to do something.

So I have renewed these in lieu of the Refugee Ban in the USA. Inspired by the-cassandra-project and their Every Day Challenge, I am writing every day to raise money for the Urban Justice Center. You can donate here or please spread the word. Thank you.

Here is a list of Day 1 -- Day 11 with sentence previews:

Day 1: Ice Soul - Ice glitters on her soul.

Day 2: Straw to Gold - Agony twines across the spindle and around the spinning wheel.

Day 3: The Barrier - Golden and red leaves crinkle in the wind.

Day 4: Uncertainty - Fear coils through her stomach, a venomous vine spewing nasty knotted briars

Day 5: Contained Time - Time ached. Every second throbbed with pain, dried out by the depletion of Fortune’s River.

Day 6: Take a Drink - Wind whistles through the trees, sprinkling golden and crimson leaves on the sluggish river.

Day 7: Snow Flowers - Snow plummets down, an arch of fluffy cold crystals, coating the desert with a heavy white blanket.

Day 8: Unlooked for Sweetness - A tantalizing sweetness buffeted the air, coy and floral.

Day 9: Sifting Revision - Thoughts, possibilities, and plots weave together in complex knots.

Day 10: incomputable - Patterns repeat: Flower 1, Flower 2, Flower 3 — scorch, heal, et. al — wood, water, fire…

Day 11: The Winter Ones - Snow poured from a white sky.

lovablestories: (al: well)
2017-01-31 05:39 pm

Day 31: Every Single Day

It's the last day!

There are so many things I wanted to do:
  • do character aesthetics for all the Nine (I got four done)
  • post more of the art I did
  • make more progress on revision! (but I got caught up in characters and short stories, which isn't bad but...)
What I have done:
  • re-drew old character drawings (2001 vs 2017)
  • organized my major characters into groups by major emotional character arcs AND major thematic arcs + subplots or supporting plot/characters (many of these interlock with each other)
Additionally, I'm thinking of trying to actually implement what I want I do with Nights of Heroes next month. Here's hoping I do it.
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part of the Every Single Day for my charity challenge to WWF
lovablestories: (write: owl (begas))
2017-01-28 08:50 am

Day 28: Every Single Day [Challenge #2]

 I've suddenly become a lot more forgetful in the last few weeks. I think the last three (or four) updates, I've forgotten to post them or I'll remember when I'm going to bed. I'm not sure if it's because I haven't been as diligent at following a structure or just feeling under the weather.

So, I guess first off, I apologize for forgetting (again). Geez.
  • did character sketches (just for fun)
  • struggled to write a couple short stories
  • realized a MC doesn't have much of a backstory
  • figured out how to keep an important scene within the revised order of the plot
  • and other details and writing I'm sure I'm forgetting because my memory has been helter-skelter lately
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part of the Every Single Day for my charity challenge to WWF | next update will be on 31 Jan 2017!



lovablestories: (al: well)
2017-01-23 06:41 pm

Day 23: Every Single Day [Challenge #2]

 Welp. I forgot to write an update yesterday. I might change it to every four days, as I seem to keep forgetting I'm supposed to do it every three days. Ah, me.

So.

Today (and this past weekend) involved:
  1. a lot of handwriting of new material and new scenes
  2. character sketches
  3. a more rigorous delimitation of the different Arcs (+ the realization that one particular subplot still needs a tie-in into the larger plot of Arc One)
  4. 1 complete picture in a short story + work on two (slow-going) short stories*
Overall, typing has been more difficult. Writing by hand seems to be working better.

*except for one of these short stories, everything on the list has to do with Nights of Heroes
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part of the Every Single Day for my charity challenge to WWF | next update will be on 27 Jan 2017!
lovablestories: a tree surrounded by glowing fireflies (patf: bayou)
2017-01-19 05:41 pm

Day 19: Every Single Day [Challenge #2] / Writing 009

 If I am anything, I am consistent at being inconsistent. Especially when it comes to blogs and urls. I say this because I have wandered across the web, settling on blogger then onto wordpress -- and at each stop swapping my url at least twice -- then onto tumblr and now here. It's hard for me retain a location. To be fair, except for blogger, these are still all active. The challenge is finding the connection and the purpose: why have a wordpress blog if I don't want to post my writing online or write book reviews?

Sorry. This is off topic.

I'm thinking of all this because I returned to my original writing tumblr (adbat-writes.tumblr.com) but renamed it and reworked it to resemble my original fairy tale tumblr (cuntodelicunti.tumblr.com) -- which had turned into my second writing tumblr (writingbegas.tumblr.com) -- which is now my original writing tumblr (writingbegas.tumblr.com). Did that make sense?

Basically I had a tumblr (cuntodelicunti) for fairy tales. And later I created a tumblr for my stories and my writing and a place to have very specific tags (adbat-writes). Then I turned the fairy tale tumblr into my writing tumblr and renamed its url "writingbegas" which is where I've been posting my Every Single Day challenges. Then I decided I wanted to keep my writing tumblr only concerned with my writing, no fairy tales. So cuntodelicunti writingbegas is deleted, and adbat-writes is now writingbegas.

Ugh. I'm not one for clarification, am I?

Ah well.

So. Nights of Heroes. I was re-reading my second revision and I realized what I like about it isn't the story (because a lot of it's wrong) but I like how the story seems connected. I have to do that again, but with the right order, the right characters, etc.

Also, I actually did rewriting today! Whoohoo! Whilst listening to Over the Garden Wall instrumental soundtrack.

What's fascinating about my original draft, which I was revising, is how...omniscient the pov is. Like in the original:

He was so enchanted with his memories that he did not see someone else coming out of another corridor. The figure paused momentarily as though to get a bearing and Nkosana, in his daydream, collided right into her.

Instead of being in the character's head and then being startled with the arrival of (and collision with) another, it describes what's happening around him, without any recourse of connecting to the character. It's weird to re-read.

Also, more importantly, that's not the pov I want for the story.
lovablestories: (op: winter nami)
2017-01-16 04:12 pm

Day 16: Every Single Day [Challenge #2] / Writing 008

 Well, this is later than I intended. I got actually distracted yesterday. (And not with the new book my sister loaned me on the Romanov sisters.) And then I wanted to try to organize the arrangement of chapters and characters/events by chapter for Book 1, so I would know where to put which scene and where I had to revise or rewrite.

That did not lead to successful results. And by then it was getting late enough that I just decided to put this post off until tomorrow, even if it would be a day late.

So.

This morning I realized that what I realized earlier this month was applicable here. I had a lot of ideas but how much did I care about them? More importantly, were they all necessary to the story? Instead of looking at the events, I was recycling the events. But do they work? Do they make sense?

For example, in the original draft, one MC and another character meet at the early midpoint of the story. And I had taken that for granted that that was how it happened. Ruminating today on character wants and character flaws (which would interfere with said wants), I realized that having that MC meet a different character at that point in the story opened up a much more interesting dynamic, because of their personalities and attitudes.

That's not to say there wasn't anything compelling about the original set up. The problem stemmed from a lack of cohesion between events and character progression. (This was applicable not only to the development of that MC and the original character she met, but that character's character arc.) Additionally, by swapping the character that MC meets, it actually allows stronger focus on familial or friendly relationships. Which is more important in Nights of Heroes as a whole, more than romance.

A bit unrelated but I'd like to write more short stories. Especially about NoH characters; I think it'd give me a better grasp on them. Also want to write more about the awesome parents of characters unrelated to NoH.

I guess that's all.
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part of the Every Single Day for my charity challenge to WWF | next update will be on 19 Jan 2017!
lovablestories: a green sketch of woman with a ponytail (dreams: jelara)
2017-01-12 06:46 pm

Day 12: Every Single Day [Challenge #2] / Writing 007

I've been thinking that I should try to focus more on Nights of Heroes and the actual rewriting of it. I've done lots of character building and writing little snippets (even finished a short story about this character) and even drawings. (Cos apparently NoH, and my Dreams, automatically link to drawings in my head.) I'd like to share more of that.

As for what I've done since my last post...

I realized waaay too many of my MC's have dead mothers. I blame Disney, being one of my major influences. I worked out the details of my central MC's history and thought that it would help him connect to another character, but then I realized that a lot of other MCs have dead mothers. Geez.

Also, I complete three short stories in the last three days. I didn't write them all in three days, but I completed them. So that's an accomplishment, I guess. I'll share the first sentence of each:

#1
Sunlight scampered over the curling wild grapevines that had devoured a stone wall.

#2

Long ago, a most unusual King inherited the ancient Padarya kingdom.

#3

She steps across the snow.

Anyway, I'm going to try to focus on Nights of Heroes: the novels a little more.

 

lovablestories: (al: well)
2017-01-09 06:46 pm

Day 9: Every Single Day [Challenge #2]

 Well.

I'm starting to suspect that I'll need to not only write new material (to add and expand different character plots) but also completely rewrite certain scenes. Not because the scenes are bad, per se, but because it doesn't work in the story anymore.

For example, I re-reading Chapter Three (of my, uh, third or fourth rewrite) and there's a very nice scene between this brother and sister character. The only trouble is that the way the story is arranged now, they wouldn't be together at the start of Book 1. I'll probably still use the scene after where the brother finds a ring belonged to his mother. But the other one doesn't really fit anywhere.

Which isn't really what I'm talking about.

Okay. So in this third/fourth rewrite, one of the MC's had a cousin. There was a subplot about someone getting into trouble and needing a place to hide. This leads said character to try to move into the cousin (and her mom's) home. But that cousin has dropped out of the story. And the character who gets into trouble has (far as I know) moved into a different subplot. So the scenes relating to all that has to no place in the story either.

Dang. That's not exactly what I mean. Basically there's a lot of scenes that have no function.

Ah!

A better example is a scene were two characters meet in an antique shop. The original scene is written from one character's POV, but I realized that using that POV doesn't make sense. That character is a tertiary character; I'd rather write the scene from the POV of the MC in the scene. So I'll rewrite it. Yeah.

The other thing I discovered while writing story snatches is that my main MC's biggest tension (in the first Book, anyway) comes from his friend. That probably doesn't convey much, but it was very important thing to realize, since it allows me to map his actions and choices (some of them a bit spiteful) better. And that's like really important to me.

lovablestories: a tree surrounded by glowing fireflies (patf: bayou)
2017-01-06 09:32 am

Writing 006

What's fascinating about my writing is that the most prominent aspect people comment on is my description (or illustrations if there are any). Not the characters or story. Which fascinates me since 1. one the earliest lesson I got from another potential writer was: show don't tell so I spend an inordinate amount of time working on my description, and 2. some of my favorite stories have simple or straight-forward characters (e.g. fairy tales, mythology, heck even One Piece to an extent*). So it's interesting that my characters are less dynamic than my description or scene-setting.

I'm thinking I might want to spend some time crunching down on characterization-in-writing. (Not necessarily character-building, but conveying strong characters in words.)

*by that I mean, there's established traits that help define the main cast



lovablestories: (Default)
2017-01-04 06:40 pm

Day 4: Every Single Day [Challenge #2] / Writing 005

 So I'm back.

What to say? I've been writing and brainstorming and drawing more in the last few days than I have in awhile. It's...like being on a sugar rush but with ideas and stories and characters. I'll probably try to go a little low key this weekend, so as not to burn out.

But as to the actually Challenge #2 (Nights of Heroes)...

Well, spend a lot of time today setting up how I wanted to start it. The revisions I've done up to this point had suffered from a lack of focus in the first scenes: what the characters want, what's happening, that sort of thing. So I asked myself, well, here's what I worked out:

What’s supposed to happen in the scene?

What would I want readers to know or understand about him first? And so on?

1.      He’s good, but not enterprising. He’s giving, but not attached. He’s an optimistic realist without ambitions (for reasons)

a.       How do I show this?

                                                              i.      Gives bread to children – he’s nice and selfless and giving

                                                            ii.      Helps fix a roof – he’s hardworking and giving and helpful

                                                          iii.      Finds shoes for someone – he’s nice and giving and mindful of others

                                                          iv.      Retrieves a doll for a child – he’s nice and kind

                                                            v.      Rescues an animal – he’s nice and protective and good

                                                          vi.      Steals back money for a poor tailor (family/father flashback) – good but underhand, and empathic and selfless

1.      Also sets up that he can steal



(I decided on the last option.)

So I now have a focus and something I aiming for. It helps.

Furthermore, I played out a major character backstory (+ another story quick synopsis that said character is part of) in my head this morning. And it gave me so many feelings. The character and the story and I just -- I finally got, I think, what Robin McKinley meant in her author notes in Rose Daughter when she talked about how a story -- a real one -- is like a puppy. You'd know when she came across one, rather than a stone. 

See, I have other stories that I really like the ideas of them. And I have at least one story that I like the characters in. But I realized there are the stories that are interesting (they have idea I like and when I explain them to myself it's about the precision or what I'm showing in the story). And there are stories that I just have strong FEELINGS for. Nights of Heroes is one of them. My Moon-demon Lineage is another. This other story I outline this morning is. And the good ideas or themes in the others, I can still use them in other work. I don't need to tell that theme in that story. It just felt like a really important thing to realize.

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part of the Every Single Day for my charity challenge to WWF | next update will be on 9 Jan 2017!

lovablestories: a green sketch of woman with a ponytail (dreams: jelara)
2017-01-01 10:41 pm

The New Year

Normally around New's Year I recollect the previous year and set a few resolutions for the next year. A way of remembering and looking forward. Usually it's a time of progression.

Instead of that, the 2016/2017 change-over centered around making sure I got my Every Single Day challenge(s) posted and set up. It was about doing the thing -- the good, helpful, activist thing + the beneficial, sharing my writing thing -- than about what I normally do. It was about being the right kind of person.

During the last several years, I've struggled with trying to comprehend what is NORMAL. Tonight these questions revolve around questions of maturity and my realization that it's very easy for me to envision suffering-w/o-a-point.

To address maturity first:
Read more... )

lovablestories: (write: owl (begas))
2017-01-01 04:47 pm

Day 1: Every Single Day [Challenge #2]

Well, I was up late (or early) because of New Year's Eve, so I'm not at my most alert today.

BUT! I did breakdown the chronology of Nights of Heroes by Arcs and (possible) books with working titles. I didn't include content details or summaries of events in each book and Arc. (All years are A.T. or After Talna).

Arc One: Rainbow Remedy [1716-1720]

  1. [1716-1717] Jewels of the Depths
  2. [1718] Kings and Revolution
  3. [1719] Love Across Worlds
  4. [1720] no working title

Arc Two [1720-1724]

  1. [1720-1] Thieves of Destiny
  2. [1722] Stolen Hope
  3. [1723] Star and the Sea
  4. [1724] Promise to the Gods

<10 yr gap> OR <8 yr gap>

Arc Three [1734-1738]

vignettes and heroics

Arc Four [1741-1745]


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part of the Every Single Day for my charity challenge to WWF | next update will be on 4 Jan 2017!

 

lovablestories: (that's fun)
2016-12-31 04:37 pm

Writing 004

 I didn't write the background story. Although I did a lot of outlining for NoH, trying to figure out how to break up Arcs and Books.
lovablestories: (op: winter nami)
2016-12-30 06:27 pm

Writing 0003

 I'm gonna go write a background story for a character's mother 'cause these two main characters in a story idea have the coolest parents ever. (I already wrote one for one of their fathers. And re-reading it today, I was surprised how engaging it was. It's weird, when I re-read my writing now it's actually...good??)

I've been wanting to try to write 400 words every day in Wild Moon, White Tree (rather that my earlier count of 100 words per day) but I've hit a mild anxiety attack right now, so I'm leaving it at 186 words today.

Also, I finally finished a short NoH story I'd been letting sit for awhile. And it actually seems good. Like what's up with that? It clocks in at 6,600 words.
lovablestories: a tree surrounded by glowing fireflies (patf: bayou)
2016-12-26 11:30 am

Writing 0002

 I was going to write up something yesterday or so, but, um, I didn't get around to it.

So I've printed off the two completed NoH short stories to start making a little book with them (+ pictures). It's something of a Christmas present to myself. I have an interest in bookmaking, so I try to make little book type things for final print offs. (This is separate from submissions.) Also, I have this incisive impulse to (sometimes) put little pictures in my stories. What I used to do is draw the picture and then take a picture (as I don't have a working scanner) and then put the picture into the document and then print. But for these I want to try printing them off and then drawing the pictures directly onto them. I'll have to find a way to make sure they don't smudge...

I'm currently printing a page re-do for short story #1, since I decided I'd rather draw a rosebud than a sparrow.

lovablestories: (al: well)
2016-12-23 07:17 pm

Writing 0001

Because I am not one for creative titles.

Any kind of journal-like blog I have will usually change a lot as time goes by. I doubt this will be an exception.

Anywho:

Yesterday I finished typing up my NaNoWriMo from last year. (Yay!) It's still really, really, really rough, but I kind of love it? Like I don't know if that's the OTGW influence or because I really love the main character or the atmosphere (yay! colonial USA New England setting). Or maybe it's all of it. Anyway, I have a soft spot for it. I probably won't think about getting published for awhile. I have enough other things to work on.

Today I wrote some more in my "Tales of the Moon" which is my (hopefully last) attempt to complete Wild Moon, White Tree my mythological demon and moon lineage story. My goal is to write 100 words every day. It's going pretty well. Even if I forgot yesterday. (I've been having low-key bad days). But I DID write 444 words today. I thought it was pretty.

I'm also working on trying to finish some "Nights of Heroes" short stories. Cause I love a lot of those characters. I have one completely done, one that needs a final edit, one that needs the climax and some cohesion, and two that need to be written. Actually, I've discovered that it's a lot quicker for me to write if I have a clear idea of what I'm writing. For example, I just wrote a short story (3,500 words) in two days but I knew precisely what would happen. The first NoH short story (5,500 words) I finished way back in November I wrote in three days. Again, I knew what was going to happen and what the conflict was. I wonder if that's what it is. Having a precise idea of what's going to happen AND what the conflict is. In the case of the short story (5,800 words) that needs a final edit, I actually had it done, but when I re-read it, I realized the plot (which had Riding Hood allusions) wasn't working. So I rewrote a huge hunk of it. And then I re-read that and I decided there was a scene that didn't work and rewrote that. And that's where I am now.

To expand a little on what I mean about "having a precise idea", it's the difference between writing (in an outline): those character meet vs said character bangs into said character after slipping on ice. One gives me a scene, a way to focus on description and action, a way to write the scene from the character pov I've chosen.