Sunday Update: Writing, videos, and the art of becoming Anjanath Kibble

Happy Sunday, everyone! Hope you all had a good, productive week. My week was moderately productive, though not nearly as productive as OhMario, my fellow amateur web novelist, who managed to produce chapters for all three of his current writing projects. (Sure, they’re thematically linked with characters shared between them, but that’s still three different titles. I’m impressed, anyway. 😉 )

As for myself, well… I got the requisite chapter of The Anubai Hero done, anyway. I was thinking about the story a bit — as in, what I had already written, not what I intend for the future — and I realized that I really haven’t made any effort to integrate any of the various plot threads together until now, especially when it comes to the supposed main character. Gan Zhu met Sun Lan exactly once, never interacted with Tai Mei, and barely spoke to Mien Bi’er. He never had any onscreen interaction with Dolgo Mehek, never met the Weaver, and has no interaction with anyone from either the Red Reaver Sect or the Green Wildness Sect.

Partially, this is because most of those plot lines came out when I expanded on originally throw-away characters and elements; but mostly, he’s just been experiencing a completely different story from everyone else. Which was kind of the initial idea, of course; but I’m a little surprised how it all played out. In any event, he’s about to crash back into the rest of the story — and I do mean crash — and even I don’t know how it’s all going to turn out. Which is cool. I think. ^^;

I also tried started writing a new project, but bounced off the very first paragraph. I managed to get a bit further by switching to first person… but still, slow going. Might have to rethink that one. :\

Well. There is one other thing I managed to get done:

As it turns out, it takes me a long time to put up a video, so don’t expect me to update my channel too often. But I’ve got a Let’s Play series in the works… though I’m keeping the game a secret until I can release the whole series serially. I’m not against creating more MHW videos, though, so if my weird stream-of-consciousness style appeals to you, just let me know. 😉

Anyway, I hope y’all have a good week. New Anubai on Friday.

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The Anubai Hero, Chapter 27

Chapter 27

Take two men, both accomplished martial artists. Presume that they have the same amount of training, have worked equally hard, had similar experiences and an equal motivation. If those two men were to have a battle, which man would hold an advantage over the other?

Naturally, it would be the man with the larger body.

The larger man would have longer reach, and heavier strikes. His punches would be more difficult to parry, his kicks would land with more violence. He would be harder to move, and harder to throw.

Now, if the difference in size was only slight, the smaller man would only have to be slightly more skillful to redress the balance and make the contest even; but the bigger the difference in size, the harder it became to make up the pure, physical gap. Entire styles of martial arts, especially those designed for women, were dedicated to fighting opponents who were larger and stronger; but even when perfected, these arts all had their limits. Continue reading

Sunday Update: List form

Things I did this week:

  1. Posted chapter 26 of The Anubai Hero. (Yay!)
  2. Updated software, and downloaded SHAREfactory, on my parents’ internet.
  3. Played a lot of Agents of Mayhem. Giggled a lot. 😛
  4. Got a new pair of headphones with a boom mic. Cheap, but comfy. 😀
  5. Paid rent. 😐

Things I failed to do this week:

  1. Make extra progress on TAH, or any of my other writing projects. 😦
  2. Figure out how to monetize my talents. Such as they are. :\
  3. Develop a cohesive and common sense philosophy to form the nucleus of a new national political party capable of drawing in those members of society disaffected with the extremism prevalent in the two-party system.
  4. Achieve world peace.
  5. Achieve personal peace.
  6. Complete Agents of Mayhem.
  7. Finish editing a new video to post on my recently established YouTube page.
  8. Set realistic goals for myself. ^^;

But if I achieve any of those things next week, I’ll be sure to let you know. The only thing I’m going to guarantee, however, is a new chapter of Anubai on Friday. See you then! 😉

The Anubai Hero, Chapter 26

Chapter 26

Fate is never even-handed. A long time ago, in his youth, Sun Din had a fateful encounter, a significant change of fortune.

Human cultivation is the manipulation of Qi: the energy of life within the three realms, made manifest in a variety of forms and phenomena. This was why the very beginning of cultivation, the first ten steps, were known as Qi Gathering: the new practitioner must gather Qi from the environment into his own dantian, and convert it into his own energy through meditation, contemplation, or the practice of martial arts.

That is why the techniques available to the average Qi Gatherer tended to be simple enhancements: strengthening the arms and legs, increasing perception, and accelerating the healing of wounds. Techniques of that sort were widely available, even to those of the lowest classes, and while they varied in strength and efficiency, they all provided aspiring cultivators with the tools they need to improve. This was why Qi Gathering was sometimes referred to poetically as the “One Road with Multitudinous Paths.” Continue reading

Sunday Update: I can’t think of an interesting subtitle.

Hey, everyone. My energy level is unfortunately low this week, so sorry if I seem a bit subdued. And my daughter is getting upset about something or other in the next room, which is a bit off-putting. Seriously, it seems like whenever I have time to do something productive, I’m either tired, or someone suddenly needs my attention…

…Sorry, just had to put my daughter in her room for a few minutes. She seems less upset now, anyway, so mission accomplished. Anyway, I don’t have much to say this week either. Got Anubai 25 done, so yay, but it was a slog, and I’m not sure it’s fun to read, so boo. And now I have to write the next one. Someone remind me that I find writing fun… :\

I’ve been bouncing around a bit on the gaming front again, but I guess I mainly played Doom this week? Well, not consistently, or I would have got it done, I think; I’m playing at a fairly normal difficulty, so I don’t die too often. I also delved back into MHW just a bit… trying to prep for Nergigante, but there is so much to do… good thing I enjoy that game. 😀

I’ve also been testing the feasibility of doing some gameplay videos on my PS4. I am a long, long way from posting anything too real, but if/when I do, does anyone have a preference about what I play?

  1. Wild Arms 3. My personal preference, but I suspect I would have to do a good deal of editing and off-screen grinding, or it would end up hours and hours of accomplishing little. Standard PS2-era JRPG, then. (Except it isn’t, and that’s why I’d like to share it.) 😛
  2. Assassin’s Creed II. I’ve seen various bits and pieces, but I’ve never actually played the game, so I’d effectively be going in blind.
  3. Horizon: Zero Dawn (Ultra-hard difficulty). If you want to see me die a lot. And hide a lot. ^^;
  4. Prey. If you want to see how I deal with stressful situations. 😦
  5. Jak 3. The best PS2-era action-platformer that doesn’t rhyme with “Catchett and Rank”. 😉
  6. Other. If you have other suggestions, I’d be willing to consider them. As long as the control scheme is decent. 😛

If you want to have some idea about what this might be like… well, let’s see:

Ok, enough of that nonsense. Have a good week, everyone, and I’ll see you on Friday for the next chapter of Anubai. 😉

The Anubai Hero, Chapter 25

Chapter 25

A stately carriage with the sigil of the Sun Clan on the side proceeded slowly through the streets of North Pine City. It was flanked by ten grim-looking men, and it was driven by an older, ugly man who glared straight ahead without blinking. Both sides of the street were lined with observers; but those spectating had two different reactions to the carriage’s passage. Those who had been allies or supporters of the Sun, or those who lived without choosing a side, were quiet and subdued. They watched the small procession with worried eyes, and many sighed quietly in sadness

On the other hand, there were many groups of people laughing and jeering at the passing carriage. These were supporters of the Fan clan, or at least those who had something to gain from the fall of the Sun. They mocked the stone-faced men who guarded the carriage, occasionally throwing eggs or rotten fruit, which were struck out of the air by the guards without comment. Normally, no one would have risked the wrath of these men, who were the strongest remaining servants of the Sun clan, not one of which was below the seventh level of Qi Gathering. Not to mention the man sitting in the driver’s seat, who was not only a practitioner at the very peak of Qi Gathering, but the man who once ruled a powerful clan: Sun Ba himself!

But times had changed. Continue reading

This Week’s Game: Dark musings on my Souls survival

First of all, let me apologize for that horrible pun of a title. Yeah, I’m talking about Dark Souls this week. No, it’s not really a review — everyone and their dog already have an opinion about this series and its tropes, and I don’t really feel the need to pick the game apart myself.

But, as I mentioned yesterday, I’d been playing a number of different games last week, and at least three of them followed the Souls-esque formula: Dark Souls 3, Bloodborne, and The Surge. And you know? I enjoy the games, even with their legendary high difficulty. And as the remaster of the original Dark Souls is being released soon — very soon, in fact — I kinda wanted to muse on just that purported difficulty. What I mean is… are they really that difficult?

Ok, let’s start with the obvious answer: YES. Dark Souls and its sequels (and let’s not forget the original original, Demon Souls) are not games you can get from intro to finale just by mashing the square button, and attempting to simply dive into a horde of enemies and cut your way out is a quick way to get filleted and grilled for supper. Mmm, I haven’t had fish in a while, come to think of it… ^^; Continue reading

Whose idea was it to have Sunday every week, anyway?

So, yeah, Sunday again. Time for my weekly check-in, I suppose.

Item one, Produce a chapter of The Anubai Hero: Done. I’ve got a better idea of how long this part is going to last, though, and naturally, it’s longer than I expected. Don’t give up, me! ;_;

Item two, Write other stuff: Nope. I had some ideas I was toying with, but if it doesn’t hit the (virtual) paper, it don’t count. 😛

Item three, Video games: Mixed. Frankly, I couldn’t settle into a game that I really wanted to play, so I bounced around from AC:S, to H:ZD, to AoM, to W:TNO, to BB, to DS3, and a number of shorter games on the Switch as well. I’m… not sure if I’m supposed to find the story of Wolfenstein: The New Order as ludicrous and amusing as I do, but I enjoyed playing it, kind of. I think. 😛

The new God of War looks spectacular, by the way. I can’t afford it right now, but I’m going to have to pick it up at some point, if only so I can see someone with an even worse temper than mine trying to be a father… :\ If I do pick it up, it’s a shoe-in for a review, although I might insist on finishing the story first, rather than just giving it a week.

Oh, and Ni no Kuni. I’ve started it, it’s fun, but I need to give it more time before I throw out an opinion. Oh, one opinion I can share: I love younger Roland’s pony tail, especially when he’s wearing his suit. 😉

Hmm, what else…? I guess I’m healthy, my family is doing well; my daughter has been testing her limits again, which is tough, especially since she has a shriek that could penetrate six inches of solid lead, but I’ve been slowly making her understand that she can’t have everything she wants, exactly when she wants it. Sigh… I’ve started reading Terry Pratchett’s novel, Men at Arms, to my son; it was one of the first Discworld novels I ever read, and still one of my favorites. Matthias seems to be enjoying it so far, so that’s good.

We’ve also started playing Overcooked together on my Switch. Today my wife happened to be in the room while we were playing, and she wondered out loud why we would enjoy a game that seemed to involve so much yelling at each other. While I admit, she has a point, she is also absolutely wrong, as anyone who has played the game with other people could definitely attest; sadly, she generally doesn’t play games with me anymore. (Not that she has time to, of course; full time work and part time school leaves little time for video games, sadly. 😦 )

Alright, enough chat. New chapter of Anubai on Friday, I’ll try to set aside some time to work on other projects, and I hope everyone has a great week. Ciao! 😉

The Anubai Hero, Chapter 24

Chapter 24

A pale sun was rising over the city of North Pine. A quiet tension seemed to hang over the city; even the early morning traders and merchants were quiet and subdued. The common citizens of the city went about their business as quickly as possible, and avoided the open streets. An entire district had been razed to the ground just a few days ago, after all, and no one wanted to provoke the uncertain tempers of the Fan clan.

The only exceptions were in the areas surrounding the Fan clan estate, where their closest allies and servants began the day in a celebratory mood. Traditional red and gold decorations were displayed on every corner of the big street leading to the main gate of the Fan mansion, and the gate itself was festooned with banners and flags indicating the importance of the event to be held within.

And yet, even here, there was a paranoid edge to all the smiles and a desperate glint in the eyes. For the same reason that citizens in the outer districts did not wish to be seen, people who were close to the Fan did not dare not to be seen. Fan Gen’s temper had been growing less predictable, and no one wanted to be the one accused of snubbing his son’s wedding. Continue reading

Sleepy Sunday…

Zzzzz… hmm? Oh, right. Happy Sunday, y’all. Hope you don’t mind if I kinda phone this one in.

Got a chapter of Anubai posted, the one I have been writing off and on since January. What the hell, me. But, yay! ^^;

Been playing the hell out of Shadows of Mordor. I like it, the systems work smoothly together. If I had one complaint, it’s that the Nemesis system is amazing, but completely under-exploited. :\

It has been snowing for the last two days… It’s really killing my motivation to do anything… What happened to spring, dammit… Grumble, grumble… 😦

Zzzzzzz….