A Living Will, Part 12: Not A Man To Cross

Behind me, the door of the office clicked shut. Captain Jack Cross, who had been staring at a “screen” and poking away at a button-covered board in front of him, looked up at the faint noise. His eyes widened as he saw me standing in the doorway, still holding my glass of water. I sensed his fear, which was quickly replaced by a strong anger. “Mr. Zagadactulus.”

-I understand you wished to ask me some questions, Captain.-

“Where is Robert?” he asked calmly. Really, his control over his emotions was quite good; I doubt many people would have noticed the undercurrent of rage in his voice. I wouldn’t have, if I wasn’t using my little trick.

-I don’t know a ‘Robert’ in this era.-

A look of impatience crossed Cross’ face — or possibly just his mind. It was hard for me to tell the difference. “Robert Brown. The officer who was with me when we ‘collected’ you. As I’m sure you could guess.”

-I do not bother to guess. The man you refer to, along with his companions, were excessively hostile. In order to expedite my own investigation, it was necessary to delay them.- Continue reading

Sunday writing digest 3: Let’s face it, it’s the Christmas edition

Well, OK, first things first: Merry Christmas, everyone. Even if you don’t celebrate Christmas as a religious holiday. Or as a secular spending spree. Or if you’ve never heard of it before. Or if you believe it doesn’t exist. Have a great December the 25th anyway. 😉

With that out of the way, how much writing did I get done this week? I’ll give you a hint: if you read my stuff, you’ve already read it. :\

Yeah, I really didn’t get anything done except the one chapter of ALW. I kinda wanted to write a second one, or at least a Christmas special, but 1) I was never home, and 2) a lot of people released extra chapters over the last couple days, and of course I had to read them all (controversial statement). Actually, after the first week, this whole month has been kinda rough on my writing, huh… 😐

OK, so let’s just say that I was on vacation last week. And I’ll just stay on vacation for the rest of the year. My son goes back to school on the 3rd, so I’ll get my acknowledged writing schedule back on track at that point. Hmm, sounds like a plan. 🙂

I’m still going to release a chapter of ALW next Wednesday, though. So look forward to Jack Cross being cross (or, y’know, enraged). 😛

A Living Will, Part 11: The Dangers of a Lack of Respect

As I contemplated Metricarisenikai’s prevarications, the water in the glass by my foot suddenly rippled.

Needless to say, it wasn’t anything to do with my flipping through Metria’s report, nor was it due to a sudden draft, or minor earthquake. I had once more made use of my Lord’s gift, and dissolved a bit of necrotic energy in the water. I had then influenced the cursed water to disperse itself a bit, and sent it drifting through the corridors leading to my comfortable cell.

Something had disturbed that unseen mist and, through the connection maintained by my magic, stirred the water in the glass. In other words, someone was coming towards my cell. I would have to prepare myself to receive them. Continue reading

Uhhh…

Yeah, so, due to poor time management circumstances beyond my control, the next chapter of A Living Will will be posted sometime tomorrow. I apologize for going up to Duluth with my family to see the Bentlyville Tour of Lights for not getting done on time. 😛

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It was fun, though.

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Just saying.

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One is my 9-year-old son, the other is a reindeer mascot costume. Can you spot the difference? 😛

Sunday writing digest 2: The “Metal Helicopter” edition!

So, this was a bad week on the writing front. First of all, while I finished my scheduled chapter for ALW on time, I wasn’t entirely happy about how it turned out. Exposition-heavy chapters are always hard… Oh, well, next week is a conversation with Officer Jack Cross, and an explanation for why it took Zedda a week to get to Metria’s bar, though you can probably guess the reason by this point. 😛

Secondly, my novel. Despite deliberately setting aside time to work on it… I just wasn’t feeling it at all, and couldn’t get motivated. I have a bad feeling that the current scene has diverged from what I wanted… The only thing to do is push through, and get to the next scene quickly, I guess. I only wrote 321 words this week. That’s sad… 😦

So, for my Friday project (which ended up being my Saturday project., I worked a little on my Connie Karma side project, to the tune of 1853 words. It was fun, although… I started from the very last part of the prologue, where Karnak is dropped into the Akashic Record, because I felt it was the most iconic part of what I was trying to do. I’ll be back-filling the rest of the prologue once I reach the end of that part, and then moving on to the actual story, if you follow me. In other words, it will be a long time before this project starts hitting the site. Also… I’ve been using the “table” function of GDocs to put a box around certain passages, but I’m not sure how that will port to WordPress. Worst case scenario, I might have to find a different platform to post it on, in order to present it in the way it was meant to be viewed… Well, I’ll figure it out when the time comes. :shrugs:

So, what have I been doing this week, since I haven’t been writing?img_0001

Well, this, for one thing. In case you’re wondering, that’s a model Apache AH-64 made from two thin sheets of metal. I can’t decide if it was tougher than I thought it would be, or just as tough… It was pretty fun, though. Not pictured: how I had to glue one of the wheels on, since the metal got too damaged. 😛

Oh, and I beat Axiom Verge. And Song of the Deep. Good games, you should try them. Although, I’ve got to get my PS4 online somehow and see if there’s a patch for SotD — there were a couple of places where camera screw and laggy processing caused certain side challenges to be about 100% impossible. Oh, and the SFX cut out during the final boss fight. Otherwise, wonderful game.

Well. OK, then. Next week, I’m going to buckle down and dig into my novel. I need to get that done, or it will just drag me down forever. Well, it’s not like I have other projects to distract me, right…?

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…damn it. That little dude on top looks tough… 😯

A Living Will, Part 10: A Dead Man’s Eyes

Metricarisenikai had been selected by Lord Baera to be a collector of information. A spy, you could say. As usual, it was impossible to understand what sort of criterion Baera used to make his selections; Metria had died young, after experiencing literally nothing of the real world, so as an intriguer he initially left something to be desired. I was almost shocked when he walked out of that dead city, all those centuries ago now, and announced that Lord Baera had assigned me to him as his mentor. Not that it showed on my face, of course; even then, I didn’t have a face.

But after centuries of practice, he had reached a point where, no matter how unpromising his beginnings were, he had all but perfected his craft. Were I feeling uncharitable, I would suggest that his craft was actually the art of getting other people to do his work for him, but I suppose that it did make him rather efficient at ferreting out secrets. Continue reading

Sunday writing digest 1: The almost late edition!

Whoa, hey, I almost forgot to do this! Bad me! 😛

I got really hooked into Song of the Deep. It’s a fun game. And that’s my excuse. 😉

So, how’d I do this week? I hit my goals for the week, so all is well! 1 chapter of ALW, which of course appeared on Wednesday, and another 4769 words, over the course of three days, into my novel which still doesn’t have a real name! Yay! My Friday project was something new; for now I’ll call it “Secret Project DLP”. 1847 words of what turned out to be mostly conversation, sort of. If it turns out to be anything, it would be the first clearly R18-type work I ever wrote. Er, for gore and disturbing situations, not for sexual stuff. Probably.

Oh, and today I helped my wife with her end-of-term composition assignment. She kept apologizing for how bad her writing was… :\

OK, so next week, 1 chapter of ALW, and more novel writing. I swear I’m going to finish that novel! …Someday.

P.S. I also picked up Axiom Verge… and some metal sheet model kits. I have way too many hobbies… 😛

A Living Will, Part 9: They Reach For What They Cannot Have

Originally, Civil Station 24 had been a prison, many, many years ago, back when this city was ruled by a duke. The prison itself had actually outlasted the dukedom, and remained open after the following regime, an oligarchy of rich merchant families, took control of the city. It finally closed down after a major incident where most of the prisoners escaped, after which it lay vacant for over a century — mostly due to a fear of the souls of the many people who had died there, said to remain as life-draining ghosts. A notable necromancer had once hidden his army inside, but had the tables turned on him and died at the hands of his own undead horde. Or so the story went; this history was all from before I arrived on this continent, and records from those times are notorious for being mostly fabrications.

Some forty years ago, the masters of this city, currently a council of democratically elected senators, had decided to expand the constabulary — although the language had shifted, and they were calling them “policemen” now, for some reason. Humans can be strange. In any event, they were looking for places to build headquarters for their newly expanded “policeman” force, and some thrifty soul had pointed to the former prison, which had remained city property despite all the civilian development that had grown up around it. Realizing the opportunity to solve their problem and remove an eyesore at the same time, the council quickly had the building renovated, and almost all traces of its former incarnation were removed. With one important exception. Continue reading

Let’s use words to describe the world!

I, uh, I’m not sure what’s up with that title. Please disregard it.

But don’t disregard this: I’ve decided on my schedule for the near future! Beginning tomorrow (which is Monday…I think?) I will be working the following:

Monday: Karis & Briar (You know, my NaNoWriMo novel, which I still haven’t officially titled), ~1500 words

Tuesday: A Living Will, 1 chapter (usually ~1500 words)

Wednesday: Editing for ALW, plus anything else I have that needs editing; Posting 1 chapter of ALW

Thursday: Karis & Briar, ~1500 words

Friday: Other projects to be determined, or possibly an extra ALW chapter (~1500 words)

Saturday: Karis & Briar, ~1500 words

Sunday: Editing and reviewing for people who have asked for my help; Posting a summary of my activities for the week

By the way, this is the bare minimum I’m aiming for; I’m not going to stop writing if I’m on a roll, after all. So, as you can see, I’m currently heavily biased toward writing my story about Karis & Briar, but I will have at least one chapter of my web novel published every Wednesday. If I happen to have extra chapters, they will either be published on Wednesday or Sunday, depending on when I can edit them. In the future, once I have my novel closer to completion, I’ll probably move to two web chapters a week, but that’s significantly in the future.

OK, that’s all I’ve got for today! See you on Wednesday, for the return of A Living Will! 😀

National Novel Writers Month: The aftermath

Hey, everyone. As I announced last night, I have reached the goal of 50,000 words in one month — go, me! So, I’ve learned a few lessons over the course of this project, so let me talk a bit about… ah, first, before that. If you want to read what I wrote over the past month, you can access it from my “Other” page, or just start !HERE!

OK, so first things first. Lesson number one: writing over 1500 words a day is entirely doable. It takes 2-3 hours, sometimes, but as long as I have some idea of what I’m writing, it can be done. I just have to be dedicated about it. Well, and it helps if I actually have a schedule to meet. So in the future, I’m going to make a schedule for my writing, and stick to it as much as possible.

Second. I was writing in a single document, to make it easier to keep track of the word count. Where this became a problem was when I named minor characters. If I had to refer to that character later in the work, I had to scroll around and find it, which became difficult as the document grew longer. So, there are two solutions I will use in the future: one, I will write down any proper noun on a separate piece of paper, so I can look them up with ease later on; secondly, dividing the story into several documents, so if I need to look up a certain part, I don’t have to scroll through the whole thing.

Lesson 2.5: My naming sense sucks. I tried to roll with it. :\

Lesson three: Beware genre shifts. I kept adding details and complications, and my mystery story drifted into something much less mysterious, and more sanity-devouring. I’m not sure if this is something I really want to control, though — it might be more useful to go back later, and change the beginning to better fit what comes later. If you follow me.

Lesson four: Writing is fun. I knew this already, but it’s worth reiterating.

Lesson five: Writing is hard. You wouldn’t think so, but it’s hard to express the images in your head as words, and keep the feel you want it to have. At least, it’s hard for me.

So now what? Well, I’m going to take a few days off, and contemplate what I want to do with my writing now. I will tell you this: once I get up and running again, I will be publishing at least one chapter of A Living Will a week. I think I will also be posting every Sunday on what I worked on that week, just to give myself a bit of accountability. But I’m still working it out in my mind. I’ll let you know soon what I decide.

Thank you all for following along, and I’ll be back soon with more things!

*Bows in gratitude*