Monday, July 29, 2013
As expected, work and personal obligations have been keeping me mighty busy lately! So I haven't had time to push revisions forward as much as I'd like, though progress is being made!
In the meantime, I've got this first draft manuscript. It's got a long way to go in terms of polish and structural revisions, but I hate to see it languish all unloved on my hard drive while I work on making my schedule more manageable.
I don't know, this is probably dumb. Who ever heard of a writer that lets everyone read their first draft? That's the awful draft, isn't it? The one nobody's supposed to see.
But as a designer, I try not to be afraid of failure. Failure is how we make progress - it is the only way to become better. And there's a certain heft to seeing a such a thing in all its ungainly glory. A blog site doesn't look like a novel. A novel looks like a novel. Right?
So, here's a link to that first draft, all 500 freaking pages of it. If you want to read it, I'd be most obliged. If you want to provide opinions and feedback, that'd be even better. Like I said, there's plenty I intend to rework, but I'm sure your wisdom and insight would benefit me even at this stage.
Ehaema - Alpha Draft
And while I'm at it, here's a link to that short interactive fiction I put together over a weekend:
Download, and use your browser to play it.
Back to work for me, but I'm keeping an eye on the place, never fear. See you around - and don't be a stranger, stranger.
(Edit 8/25: Okay, I think everyone that wanted to see this has probably grabbed it. Now that I'm getting into editing things, I'm going to go ahead and take this link down. As always, if you want to read it, you can just visit the February 29th entry on this blog and read forward from there. Meanwhile I'll just be over here, typing.)
Tuesday, June 11, 2013
The Order of the Good Death never fails to brighten my day. I may try and work in a reference to oleic acid on my revision pass.
I'm enjoying working with Scrivener. The book is now divided into greater sections and chapters, and I'll be working on summarizing each of them using the index card tool so I can get a better visual sense of flow and pacing for each of the storylines. It'll also generate a version in e-reader format (or any of several other choices) when it's that time.
Sunday, June 09, 2013
Projects for today:
- Import novel into Scrivener, chop into chapters, improve structure. (in-progress)
- Push-ups, sit-ups, nourishment, wash gym clothes. Maintain the Machine.
- Hyperventilate about things, alternate brooding with existential terror, 10 reps each
- Write up first impressions of Remember Me; post blog to Dtoid.
- Fix bugs in Cyclic Dream, add variant endings, make it nicer.
- Notes for next novel concept
- Research grad schools as a pacifying escape fantasy, ponder life choices
- Jump around to angry music
- Plug in the Ouya I got in the mail on Friday, investigate
- Can't sleep; clowns will eat me
Sunday, May 26, 2013
Hi there. How are you?
Just dropping a line to let you know I"m still lurking. And still writing. I didn't forget about you! But it has been terrifically busy.
I have a short story - two, actually! - being published in a cool zine format which I'll let you know more about as soon as it breaks.
I've been putting some effort into doing a little world-building for a work project.
And - I made a game! Okay, well really I've only spent today on it. I'm practicing in twine. This is my very first interactive fiction creation!
It's nothing special - mostly I'm teaching myself to operate and understand the logic behind conditional branching pathways, and seeing what I can accomplish with that. It's got too much complicated crap in it for a beginner project, and I think the next one I do will be simpler. Also, it could use some pictures and music to jazz it up! But it was fun, and I learned a lot!
There are some rough edges and I may have missed a few bugs, but it seems reasonably stable. Have a look and tell me what you think when you get a chance. Pitch me an idea for another one, if you like!
Play Cyclic Dream
Oh, here's a soundtrack for it, if you like that sort of thing. Enjoy your weekend.
Wednesday, March 27, 2013
From the updates to Kim Boekbinder's SPACE! album project:
"Chorus consists of brief, rising-frequency tones that sound like the chorus of birds singing at sunrise, hence the name "chorus" or "dawn chorus". Chorus at Earth is generated by electrons in Earth's Van Allen radiation belts. Once generated, the chorus waves affect the motions of the electrons through a process called a wave-particle interaction. Wave-particle interactions disturb the trajectories of the radiation belt electrons and cause the electrons to hit the upper atmosphere." - Donald A. Gurnett/U/Iowa.
Wednesday, March 20, 2013
Well! So ends the tale. It didn't set out to be a novel, but we so rarely set out to be the things we eventually become.
Did you like it? I did! I mean, let me be clear - already there are a hundred-hundred things I want to fix on the 2nd draft, and even paging back through entries now I get a little nauseous and upset with things, but I had a lot of fun writing it. More than fun; the exercise of writing a novel helped me get through some bleak moments this year. There were times when it was the only creative activity that I was happy with. Knowing that I was making progress made me feel better about everything else in life.
And I like what it became, warts and all. So much so that, even though the 2nd draft will most certainly incur a good deal of revision - I'm resisting the impulse to break it down to what other stories are. Clear victory over adversity, 3 act structure, all of that sort of thing which you know you've seen a hundred times before. This doesn't need to be that kind of creature. It grew up the way it wanted to. I'll clip some of the excessive wording, and maybe shuffle the order of events a little, but overall I want to enhance its rough edges, not sand them off. Confusing and contradictory perhaps, but a unique thing - that's the future I envision for it.
Needs a title still, and maybe a few other bells and whistles, but all that's still to come. I promised to put it to bed for at least a couple months, and I'm sticking to that.
But what of the blog? What of daily updates, what of Station Idents, what does the future hold?
I promise to check in and drop some thoughts regularly. It'll be a bit quieter for a while - I need to regain some energy. When I do swing into editing pass number one, I was thinking maybe I'd post about what I'm doing and why. Again, not because I want anyone to use it as an example necessarily - just to show you the process. I love it when my favorite writers post scripts, notes on the context of a scene, where they were in life when they wrote it, why they decided to structure their creations in a certain way. So hopefully I can do the same, on the off chance that someone out there might benefit just by seeing what it is that goes on behind the wizard's curtain.
And eventually, there will be more writing. A New Thing, this is guaranteed. So go get some air, visit some new sites, think some things. Create. We'll be here when you get back.
This was merely a beginning.
Sunday, March 10, 2013
Source: Christopher Frank Beitz
And just as I'm saying goodbye to Draft 1, I find out that some dear friends of mine are moving and I have to say goodbye to them as well. This, as the French say, sucks. ;) But this is the way of stories and the way of life. Paths diverge and reconnect. That's part of how they work, and they are often all the better for having done so.
All my tribe are nomads.
On the plus side, the week has also brought a small tide of treasures - gorgeous concept art for a game project I'm working on, good news, lovely scotch, nice food, and excellent company.
And now, I have to start brainstorming on a short story - this time for a 'zine. I'll keep you posted about that, as soon as I know more.
Sunday, March 03, 2013
And that, as they say, is that.
Still a couple of weeks worth of entries coming your way, but there's first draft, done and done.
Time for a victory whisky.
Cheers! And thank you all so much, for reading along and watching me figure my shit out here. There's more to come, in terms of new writing and other stuff - I intend to keep on updating this blog as I figure out what order to tackle things in. But for now, I'm going to put my feet up for a bit and bask.
Sunday, February 24, 2013
Why are there not more Sundays? I could use about a month of them, all in a row.
The more I write, the more often I begin to remember elements of dreams I've had. Long after the fact, after I've awoken from a sleep which I presumed to be dreamless, I'll be going through my day, fiddling with a phrasing or a plot development in my head, and I'll realize that my mood is being influenced by some long, complicated, and probably nonsensical chain of events that I experienced during the night, now only available to me in flashes of insight that disappear as swiftly as I grasp for them.
Maybe they're not correlated at all - the dreaming, the writing. I just notice this sensation more often these days. The dreams have always reared their heads whenever I have problems IRL that seem daunting or insurmountable. Little pseudo-conscious mechanisms running the simulation 10, 15, 100 times every night, trying to figure out which layer of reality is the one in which triumph is possible, or failure is at least properly interesting.
May you wake and remember a world that belongs to you, this week. Safe travels.
Sunday, February 17, 2013
Source: Deimante Ceciene
Whew. Three more entries; that officially puts me past Feb 28th. It'll take a few more scenes to tie things up nicely, but there you go - one year worth of weekday writing. And it's been a blast. I'll try to finish up before February 28th actually gets here, and that'll be that - one year, one novel. Giddyup.
After that, I've got other projects clamoring for attention, and I'll have to turn to those for a couple of months before I take a swing at my second draft. I actually need to come up with a title, you know? Ehaema will probably remain the name of blog, where I'll continue to post new writing and musings and such, but it doesn't feel quite right for the title of the book. I expect I'll figure something out eventually (but hey, feel free to suggest something!)
Oh, also. Every day I'm tumblin':
So much for the fun part of the week. Now here comes the weekday bit. Give me strength.
Sunday, February 10, 2013
Sunday, February 03, 2013
Pulling the pieces together
one by one
flavor of the text is the skin of the thing, surface tension, what keeps the spider journeying along the surface of the piece rather than plunging downward into a fluid of broken metaphors drowned in apathy
the core succeeds, against all odds
the next phase is design. Should it be design? there is a certain amount of magic visible in the creation of something raw and unbeautiful, unstructured and free to wander, captured as it was at the moment of rude explosion onto the page. For some people that is the wonder of the creative act. You cut it off from that generative wonder and maybe it dies, maybe the polished and pretty texts are just so much glossy cadaver and weren't anything more, while we spend another year digging in the guts of the thing, embalming a smile, applying tweezers, clamps and electrodes to get it to dance a little jig, smell it burn, feel we learned. Is there a point to that? Is that the point itself?
Little gods making little lives, in many little ways.
this has been ehaema acoustic, live and uncensored, and a little bit weird
now returning to your regularly scheduled programming
Sunday, January 27, 2013
Sunday, January 20, 2013
Tough week for an introvert; I've had to be "on," in conversation, engaged and present almost continuously. I didn't have to journey very far or do a lot of physical activity, but I feel more drained than I would if I'd been hiking all week. By Friday / Saturday, I felt distinctly like I was interacting with people underwater or from a long distance away - my brain had started wandering off the leash whether or not I gave it permission, the way it does when I haven't slept enough.
All of which to say - the words I have left, I should use for writing. To it, then.
Sunday, January 13, 2013
Source: Christina Kourkoulou
It's like walking up an elevated freeway exit. I spend a lot of my time focused on what's immediately around me, exerting effort and attention in a space that sometimes feels deserted, while the occasional threat of a serious problem or timesuck occasionally rushes me like headlights in the dark. And it seems kind of like a bad idea, or foolish, to be walking this way - one step at a time, while pros cruise by me as though I were at a standstill. I glimpse their faces on books and in interview articles like happy faces in warm, lighted car windows, going places I could never reach if I started running now.
Sometimes I look over the side of this ramp, and I can see...
I'm way up higher on this path, the path I always kept in sight, than I used to be. Surprisingly far. I can see all the lights in the distance, spread out in a map I couldn't have seen a year ago. Feels a damn sight better than being stuck in traffic where I was. When I'm not worrying about oncoming threats, I feel more peaceful up here. More in command of where I'm going. More able to taste the wind.
It feels good.
I can see signs for another exit coming up in a little ways. I'm starting to think about what comes next.
Got any suggestions?
Sunday, January 06, 2013
*Home Stretch Talk In The Mental Locker Room*
Come on, motherfucker. Get up and write.
Two entries yesterday. Some more today. Faster, not slower. Faster, not slower.
Get off your ass and type.
You're a bad 80 WPM sonofabitch with keystrokes for blood and a metaphysics theory engine between your ears. This isn't even focused work, this is playtime. This ain't shit. Quit sandbagging. Everyone you idolize has been doing this longer than you and better than you. There is no more time. One word after another, one two, one two three four, connect the dots. There is something alien and beautiful under the world's skin, and you are going to rip it out barehanded and show it to people, one dream at a time. Hup, hup, hup. Caffeinate, connect the dots, finish the pattern. Knock it out.
Go, you complete fucking dork. Go.
Sunday, December 30, 2012
Oh, such grand plans I had. Before all hell broke loose and I spent a month paddling against the current.
Progress continues apace. End of January seems like a more reasonable goal now. Knowing me, I'll overwrite EVEN MORE and end up busy until end of February anyway, but I'll try to restrain myself. Getting some more words knocked out as we speak.
Oh also, that thing I said last week about that being the last Station Ident of the year? Apparently I can't read calendars. So I've got that going for me.
Sunday, December 23, 2012
Oh wow. Getting this interface to work via iPad is taking a bit of bludgeoning; I think the poor device might be close to having a seizure.
Well, it may look a little ugly, but nonetheless I wanted to get some weekend music and imagery in here before the weekend was quite over. Mission accomplished, hopefully! Enjoy the holiday season, wherever you happen to be. The next STATION ID happens in the new year - see you then.
Sunday, December 16, 2012
Assembler, by Kosmur.
December has just sucker-punched me. I admit, I was asking for it. And I'll benefit from at least learning to meet the myriad challenges that have sprung up, even if I'm not successful at all of them. But holy shit, things have been a bit intense. And tragedy has visited a lot of people in a lot of ways - some strangers to me, others near and dear.
My self-concept has ever been the Curious Stranger - the figure who drifts in from the edge of the woods to watch the humans at play, and bemused or delighted by what he sees, puts on the ol' human-suit and tries to mimic them with varying degrees of success. Until of course he gets in over his head, and then the woods begin to look much more appealing than they did before - but the way back is no longer clear.
I basically always feel in over my head.
We mostly think of Halloween as the day of spirits, but really, isn't any holiday - holy day - a day when the divine out-of-context came knocking at the doors of the world so hard that everyone remembers the occasion?
Hang tough out there. Don't forget to act like people.
Sunday, December 09, 2012
Neil Noland, via touchdisky
don't sweat the factors that are out of your control
don't stint on the effort of which you're capable
you have a state of mind to defeat
once this is done, all doors shall open for the initiate