Sunday, March 22, 2009

Changes and Root Canals

So I realized that I'm the author of my own story.

Yeah, sounds trite and stupid, but the point is that if I'm not satisfied with a story, I should change it. It is true, that a balance must be struck between piddling around with the same story over and over again and putting stuff out. Well I've put lots of stuff out and its time, in my opinion, to notch up the piddling around with it until I get it to work.

I'll finish Earth and Water, but quite frankly, starting with Air, I don't do any more stories until I get it set up right, which I intend to do this week. I've also learned that when I compare novel 3 to novel 2 I do understand that it should all be written at once and quickly. I'm thinking that with air I write it all in three days. Which means I use the process I use with scripts, including putting down the entire plot ahead of time and THEN filling in the blanks. My stories come out much stronger that way.

My mother in law had as much difficulties with the 2nd novel as my mother did. Specifically the beginning. I'm going to perform a root canal on it, and radically change a few things whilst trying to save the core story. We'll see if it helps. If the foundation is not strong enough, I'll just have to move on, like I did with the first novel.

Which makes sense, since I usually have to do twice as much as anyone else to learn something, so if a natural writer doesn't really get to the good stuff until after their first novel, why not expect me to require at least two?

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

The plot?

So...a creative do I get a human into the elf lands? The truth is, that unless they're a merchant or a sailor who gets 'lost at sea' nothing immediately comes to mind.

And I've already done the lost merchant thing for Earth. The last thing I want is a bunch of stories about merchants. Not that there is anything wrong with that, but its hardly epic heroism.

Now I do like the idea of a meeting between different cultures, but I'm not ready to do the that leaves either the Simsaur's people, the God's people (and my instinct is telling me this isn't right for them), the Abysmali people or a wilder. A wilder would be convenient because it would help define them, which means it has to be the Simsaur.

Now the problem is that the Simsaur make lots of people. They're the masters at breeding and life manipulation, but a bajillion races is...excessive in my belief. So what exactly would they see as wanting in a human? The Simsaur are the oldest of the races, so in some ways they've got a grudge, but they've got a grudge against everyone since they've been eclipsed by everyone at one time or another. So I'm thinking dwarves, gnomes, goblins and a million little short races to be diminuitive. The mechanical aptitude of humans (the ability to figure things out) is something that makes them useful to the Abysmali, but the Simsaur don't need that. On the other hand, there has long been a relationship between Simsaur and human teachers which tells me that these diminuiative races would be the true masters of magic.

Which is a bit against the trope of Fantasy since elves are supposed to be masters of things. But then again...the Sopensen would actually teach their people things, whereas the Dwarves would only be given a few bits and pieces. And their magics are totally different.

It seems a fit, but we'll see.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Air Apparant

Meeting with Ken this Thursday to plot out the next step of the 4th Novel (Pre Cyber). Some progress but not a huge amount.

Fire has been submitted and rejected; waiting to hear back from on Vance. I won't further report this kind of thing unless its accepted simply because it long, tedious and a little depressing.

Earth and Water are slowly moving along. I'm torn between wanting to do a good word count quota and making them GOOD, and right now I'm leaning a little bit on the making them GOOD side of things.

I've done the 'trickle' method with multiple stories rather than focusing on a single story before and I think it works kind of good. Course I need to finish one before the next Writer's group meeting but I think I'll be able to do that.

Tis the week to start designing "Air" which in this case I think means that Sopensen. I think the latter period, after the Flotsam novel interests me more; and needs the most definition. In fact, while I won't use this part directly in the novel there's a part that sings to me for placement in what I will eventually write later this year.

I speak, of course of the 'elves'. Should I even call them that? I imagine the humans of Glashause would. They would probably not call themselves that though. I could see themselves calling themselves Scions or something like that. To them 'elves' would be the Sopensen.

Monday, March 9, 2009


Working on Earth and Water right now. Because of other things, I'm taking the trickle writing approach rather than focusing. Need to move these things along and I'll be designing Air next week. Fire and Vance should be shipped out either tomorrow or Wednesday. Probably tomorrow. Feedback and writing group definitely helps.

I've sent Ken my half of 16-20 in the Pre Cyber book. It's shaping up to be something pretty good. I think we're about 35-40% of the way there to a first draft, which will be very very nice.

Saturday, March 7, 2009


The writing group went well. They gave me great feedback on Fire, though it is going to require a bit of a rewrite. I'm going to do that at the same time as water and start Earth this week as well.

Julie brought an old children's story that she wrote for her nephews a while back that is quite nice. Rita brought another chunk of her novel. This time it was an interesting anecdote about roller skates.

I'm still somewhat at a loss of what to do with Earth. However, I think what I'm going to do is have a human find the place long after the beavers are gone, and have the wild humans (except I need a different name for them) try to keep him from finding out the truth of what they did so long ago.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Role in the Cycle

So I'm thinking the woods in this case are natural enhancers of whatever exist within them. So the Hosted in this case, wouldn't really be changed. Since the Woods, or what would eventually become enchanted woods, were made by the Hosted, they already regarded themselves in their natural and perfect state. Animals would behave more like themselves, be more healthy, more vibrant and more...everything. A bird would be more bird like and a lion more lion like. It would create a healthy eco system that would at the same time reduce suffering.

With the ability to bring the trees to life within at their command (a given for such an enchanted place), it would be foolhardy for anyone to attack them during the dark times. Indeed, they would serve as natural resting places for questing heroes that eventually became human emperors during the light times, thus becoming natural preserves to a theoretically grateful new dynasty. Of course, they also had to have the ability to make trees grow with incredible speed to undo any damage done by the seige engines.

Indeed, the idea of enhanced humans raised in the woods is as old as fantasy, so someone who was a small child and raised by the Hosted could become quite powerful; stronger, swifter, smarter and more skilled at woodcraft than any normal natural human would be.

But until the end of Prophesy, humans were born, raised and then expelled from the Woods to fulfill their destinies as champions of humans. But what if there were multiple generations of humans born in such a place? Humans that become stronger, faster, and the most base animal instincts of all humans, lusty, Emo, passionate in every way imaginable. More Satyrs and Dryads than Centuars it seems.

And eventually the patient hosted would stand in their way one too many times, and the humans they had good naturedly kept sheltered from the storms ravaging the world beyond them would be killed, to a one.

Definitely the stuff of classic how to make a story out of it?

Monday, March 2, 2009


The final from hell and the gaming project from hell are sucking up my creative energies. I've sidelined the gaming project (even though it will pay ACTUAL money) and focused on the final for now. It should be much easier to write once this is done. Even easier when I've graduated.

Still, Fire and Vance are nearly ready for submission, and I'll be sending them Friday.
Water is stalled but must be ready by the writing group this Friday. In fact, I'll probably finish it Wednesday.

Which means it is about time to start designing the next story. The design I have in my mind are the third race. And the time is in the third era, right before the novel (whatever that might be) but long after Fulcrum of Prophesy. This is a world in which Pickle has been shattered into seven different parts. One to preserve the wall that protects humans inside of Glashouse, but the other six warped by his brothers and sisters and used for their own purposes. I like the idea of the other six using humans or modifying them in some way. Of course, the problem with this

For example, the Simsaur would easily change humans and quite frankly would make a lot of them to suit their purposes. The Abysmali could do the same thing, possibly with Mermen or possibly with gnomes or some tech loving race....but I must admit, I've never read about technically proficient mermen before. I'll have to think on it. The Gods...well...I don't know there. On the one hand, they love to meddle, but on the other hand they never got quite as raw a deal as the others, so I don't know. I'll have to think on that. The Bleyoki would just kill the humans in their lands, but I could see them eventually twisting something already modified by the Sopensen. And I could definitely see the Sopensen 'refining' humanity more to their own tastes. Subtle yet verifiable changes. Maybe even Elves. I don't like elves, and consider them...I dunno...boring...but in this case they, or something like them actually make sense given Sopensen sensibilities. Not that there aren't already some similarities between Sopensen and Elves anyway.

That's part of the challenge. The more original I make it, the more freedom I have and the more I'll enjoy it, but the more tropes of classic fantasy and mythology that I use, the more people who haven't read anything I've written before will be able to connect to it.

But the focus of the story that comes most to my mind are the third race. I can't even remember the name of the third race because they're so bland. I mean, intelligent beavers that build shelters with power in them? Whatever.

But, it does seem a wonderful way to segue into the 'magical forest' trope of fantasy. The modified humans, and the shard of Pickle could become Centaurs, or Nymphs or Fauns etc. But the thing that I find most fascinating about this idea is the beginning of the New Age, which starts with Fulcrum building the wall and ends with that wall coming down, but the beginning of the end, which probably takes centuries if not millenia, is the slow distancing of the Elder races and their patron Powers.

So what starts it? Well, why not kill two birds with one stone and have the classic story of, the 'woodland humans' in whatever form I give them, rising up and killing their masters. Which would certainly make the other races take another look at their 'tame' humans, wouldn't it?