Saturday, August 31, 2013

New Fiction Idea #33

I still don't know what's going on in this story. I just want to play with the characters. Do let me know if you like the plot, though. It's hard to think of anything that hasn't been done a million times in the superhero-type genre.

Working Title: Suture

Genre: Fantasy

Protagonist: Sven, a 17-year-old young man with very yellowish blonde hair kept chin-length. He's tall with hands a bit too large, and he's more enduring than strong physically. He has a dark sense of humour, is a bit irresponsible, and has rather low moral standards towards those who aren't his friends. He has the ability to seal up any wound, tear, fissure, etc.

Other Main Characters: Anna and Anya, 15-year-old identical twins with short, brown hair styled in the same single forward swoop. They're of average height but very slender. Both wear headbands—Anna's pink, and Anya's yellow—but will take them off or switch them to fool people. They're very much tricksters, although on a petty level, and they love cute things, fawning over boys, and swimming. Both are telepaths, with Anna able to control sugar crystals and Anya salt crystals.
Midas, Sven's 19-year-old brother. He has dark blonde hair kept reasonably short and about the same physique as his brother, although a bit more muscular. The quiet type, he prefers to be alone, usually listening to classical music or sketching architectural designs. He's intelligent but can be incensed quite easily and usually lashes out in such situations. He has the ability to control others' circulatory systems by taking a baton and conducting.
Jethro, a 30-year-old man with dull red hair and a fairly heavy build. He's infuriatingly patient and determined. He tries to be an agreeable father figure. He has the ability to touch an object and temporarily give it an extreme temperature, either hot or cold depending on the object.

Antagonist: Harrison, Jethro's brother-in-law and a very physically strong man with dark hair. He is influential in a prosthetics manufacturing company, and normals are entirely unaware of his self-termed "osteophagy." While he is able to consume food without ill effects, he must eat human bones for energy—a simple task when he can pluck any bone straight out of its owner and let it melt in his mouth.

Setting: 1980s California.

Plot: One year after a handful of people fall ill with a stomach bug and also happen to gain powers, Jethro starts putting out advertisements for those affected and rounding them up. As Sven and the others try to get along, Harrison starts his own forceful recruitment, and the protagonists soon discover that Harrison is preparing to start a wide-scale dispersion of a lethal pathogen. Having been accidentally exposed to its predecessor, Sven and the others are the only ones who can enter the pathogen creation/storage complex to shut it down.

Point of View: Third-person, omniscient.

Friday, August 30, 2013


Because true creative minds cannot be tied to one medium alone!

...That doesn't necessarily mean we're good at all of them, but still.

Some of you may be aware I have a deviantArt page, although I don't post much. I'm always more inspired to put things into words than pictures. Occasionally, though, a single moment or idea presents itself, and it cannot be hacked out on a computer keyboard. That, or it's something that really doesn't interest me that much, such as fluffy romantic pictures for certain Hetalia characters, so I'd rather sketch it out than try to construct a whole story of any length. And then sometimes I just feel more like drawing than writing.

I've already done a few posts on how connected music is to writing, but it is, of course, its own art form. I've humoured the idea of becoming a classical composer (or rock star, let's not lie), but I'm never really inspired to make music. I'll sing along to Fleetwood Mac or play "Crazy Train" on oboe, sure, and I'll often find myself humming a random, classical-style tune that I find catchy (usually this happens when I start adjusting a tune to something annoying that's stuck in my head and go way off on a tangent), but it's not the same as creating a story. It sounds pretty, and it can tell stories in some sense, but there are less specifics, more hinting, and less time to get through it all. It's kind of hard to describe my view on music because it's so many things to me—a background to writing, an inspiration to writing, a way to shift my focus away from a stressful situation, a means of worship, and sometimes just a means of amusement.

All I can say is, these mediums are different, as they should be, and can't serve quite the same purpose for the same person. Of course, they can be mixed, but that's another story altogether.

To conclude, here are a few random ideas that I want to draw but haven't yet. I may start posting these like I do Fragments, although they have little to do with writing and might not belong here.

    • A collage of anatomical sketches (e.g., nephrons, neurons, stratified squamous epithelial cells) overlaid with the text "I AM FEARFULLY AND WONDERFULLY MADE"
    • [fan art] A shipping picture featuring Russia and (OC) Antarctica with the title "To the Ends of the Earth"
    • Personifications of Mississippi and Alabama standing back-to-back
    • [fan art] A shot of a really, really battered WWII England with an almost crazed look of tenacity, the background being a particularly bad bombing of London
    • An American flag made by snippets of red, white, and blue portions of other nations' flags (with a few other colors so the other flags can still be identified)
    • Pairs of characters from The Long and Winding Road, including Emile brushing Monique's hair, Charlotte and Arthur back to back shooting down monsters, Jordan trying to teach Silas violin, and Martin joshing around with Manfred
    • Not exactly a drawing, but I'd love to make some chaotic war/battle scene with no sound but "Scarborough Fair"

Thursday, August 29, 2013

New Short Story Idea #4

I considered doing this for the Writer's Digest genre short story competition, but I don't think I'll have a decent version out in time for the due date. At any rate, it doesn't feel like it has enough to it to be a whole novel.

Working Title: "Communications Breakdown"

Genre: Sci-Fi

Main Characters: Tommus Richards, a 24-year-old black man who is appropriately full of himself. He is a world-famous runner (anyone could guess from his physique alone) and loves it. He can be rather greedy, and he'll look down on others often, but he's not always offensive. He abandoned the long-running family business for his current career and, as a result, has been estranged from the rest of the family.
Phil, the antagonist. More greedy than Tommus, he's rather slippery and unafraid to take risks, whether they involve him or someone else.

Setting: Future Earth's largest hospital. The size of a city, it demands a large workforce and a multilayered communication system. It consists of several futuristic buildings as well as some outdoor space.

Plot: Tommus is lounging in his summer mansion waiting for the next competition in a month or so when there's a knock at his door. The man there informs him that somehow the entire hospital communication system has crashed, and they're in desperate need of some people to help get information from one place to another fast. Figuring it could be a decent training opportunity, Tommus agrees to volunteer a bit, and it's all fun and games until he starts to stumble upon clues that the shutdown wasn't an accident and just how much money Phil could get if a few delayed messages lead to deaths.

Point of View: First person (Tommus).

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Fragments III

After Fragments I & II comes Fragments III, more incompleteness for you and me.

  • A character named Martha Bell who outlives her husband significantly (after seeing a couple's gravestone with the husband dying at about 40 in the 1930s and the wife with no end year inscribed)
  • A fighting gnome with an ice pick (how my mother described her earache)
  • A crack dictionary with fake definitions of the chemical elements (i.e. Manganese, n., the language spoken by otaku, or Boron, n., an idiot who can't even be interesting about it.)
  • Someone with a painfully Greek last name (I may end up giving a character in the original fiction version of The Long and Winding Road the last name Papadopoulos, so check.)
  • "They can turn off my feelings like they're turning off the light" (line from a Phil Collins song)
  • A story based on example sentences in the dictionary on my computer
  • Characters who fly planes over tornadoes/hurricanes and drop bombs down the middle of them to disperse the circulation (my father's idea for a real-life thing)
  • Action girls that are personifications of thunder and lightning
  • Someone who brings optical illusions to life/reality
  • Personality traits as currency
  • A Hetalia SpaIre fic insisting that the Black Irish origin myth does have at least one grain (or one couple) of truth to it

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

And By Flip-Flops, I Mean Freedom

Symbolism is supposedly a big part of literature. I'm not really in on the bandwagon.

When I was little, my school had a Young Authors and Poets club. I joined, figuring I was pretty good at poetry (although at the time I didn't think it was anything more than writing in verse). The first time we did a group critique—or at least swapped each other's pieces and talked about them—a boy named Seth informed me it wasn't a really good poem because it didn't have enough symbolism.

I've since dropped out of the poetry sphere, but that doesn't mean I'm out of hot water yet. Symbols are still important to prose, or so I hear, and, well, I write prose. It's a way to incorporate deeper meaning into things without hitting the reader over the head with it.

Symbolism also seems to tie in with theme, which may be why it gives me trouble. It's all about getting a point across, which just isn't why I write. Sure, there are things that I argue, but most modern people are just going to be offended by what I have to say, and I've never once written a story for the theme. I just want to play with characters I like in a world I like, and pushing a theme into the mix may still allow that, but it hogs some of the focus.

So, I'll probably try to work in some symbolism, although the way I write it would have to wait until editing.

What kind of symbols do you use in your stories? Like to see in other stories?

(For anyone curious about the title: In my "nerd prison" school, flip-flops weren't allowed, which made me unhappy because I quite like wearing flip-flops. Additionally, Dad won't let [trans: make] me drive if I'm wearing flip-flops. Thus the freedom part.)

Monday, August 26, 2013

New Fiction Idea #32

The original random spark of an idea was using humans as trading cards, but it ended up turning out like this.

Working Title: Dead Man's Hand

Genre: Action/Adventure

Protagonist: Adrian, a twenty-something man with average-length, straight, brown hair and grey-green eyes. Fairly big-boned, he's tan but freckled. After a few years' history of killing target after target, he's trying to sort out his morals.

Other Main Character: Helen, Adrian's eighteen-year-old little sister. Tall, she has straight, dark brown hair to the middle of her back and is pretty but not beautiful. A bit of a brat sometimes (usually around her brother), she can be clingy but can take care of herself.

Antagonist: Various other members of the organisation.

Setting: Modern-day America, east coast. Adrian is part of an odd gambling organisation. It plays a card game, with cards carrying higher values than others. The players get their hands, and the one with the highest amount wins a very large amount of money. The cards are generated by a computer, which randomises 52 people—enemies of the organisation as well as a few others to disperse suspicion—and assigns them a card identity unbeknownst to the players. Players collect a hand of five cards by assassinating Cards on the list. The loser of each deal gets the blame for all deaths in the round.

Plot: Adrian continues to gamble with his organisation, hoping to win the jackpot to split his winnings with the victims of his killings. For this round of dealing, however, Helen turns out to be one of the Cards, and Adrian scrambles to her side. Between trying to assemble his own hand and continuing to hide his actions from her, keeping her alive proves to be quite a task.

Point of View: Third person, limited to Adrian.

I already have a cover idea, too—a dark background with a young woman (Helen). Her back is turned towards us, and she's wearing some sort of backless dress so that we can see the design of the Seven of Diamonds on her back, bloodlike.

Friday, August 23, 2013

New Fan Fiction Idea #16

This is an old fan fiction idea of which I managed to write about a paragraph before letting it die. The main reason for that was The Long and Winding Road—not because of time restraints, but because it has the same pairing.

Someone else is free to take it. Seriously, go ahead.

Working Title: Skates

Fandom: Hetalia: Axis Powers

Genre Tags: Romance/General

Length: Multichapter

Protagonist: Belle (human!Belgium), 16, a student at [unnamed high school] who's sort of a goody-two-shoes, second rung of the popularity ladder type. She spends a lot of free time roller-skating at the local rink.

Other Main Character: Arthur (human!England), 17, a prominent member of the [unnamed high school] football/soccer team. He's a punk with few friends who's gotten in enough fights to be generally looked down upon (although he never seems to mind).

Antagonist: Not sure. At some point Ludwig is going to be trouble, and Arthur and his siblings are always beating on each other.

Plot: Dragged to the local roller-skating rink for a "family outing," Arthur runs (skates?) into Belle, they find out they attend the same school, and romance, yay.

Setting: Modern-day something. Probably somewhere in America. Uh, Colorado. Why not?

Point of View: Third-person, limited to different characters at appropriate times.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Dream Journal #13

I suppose this is what I get for watching K-ON! and Moyashimon on the same day as reading an academic article about anime for a research paper.

13 Jul—14 Jul

I was in a large history classroom with a long, curved desk, around which everyone sat. The teacher hadn't arrived yet, so I was looking up things on the Internet with my laptop. After discovering that, contrary to what I read earlier, Wikipedia now said there was only one season of K-ON!, and I was disappointed that I had indeed finished the entire series. After looking up something about Hetalia, I got out my laptop charger, and, realising it was unwound, anyway, decided to plug in my computer to charge. I found an outlet at chin level by the front door and proceeded to slide the plug into it very slowly.

In the middle of this process, I noticed a spark jumping at the back of the outlet (which I saw through the outlet holes as the plug had yet to completely fill them), and suddenly the entire outlet panel caught fire. I quickly removed my charger, and everyone in the class started freaking out a little bit until the teacher* came in. After observing the situation with a clear head, he instructed two of the girls nearby (I had already retreated) to put out the fire by flinging handfuls of yellow oil on it from the sink a few metres away. He remarked to me that this was sort of dangerous to the girls closest by, but the fire steadily went out.

Next, I was Ritsu of K-ON!, trying to catch up to Naruto. He was chasing Sasuke, but I knew the Sasuke was a fake, so I was shouting and running to stop Naruto before he could run into a trap. At some point in the chase, we had to go across a very long bridge with several supports that cut straight across a low mountain range. As we started on that part of the race, the view zoomed out to explain that the stretch of wood was the longest of its kind, a fact that I did not appreciate under the circumstances.

I continued running down the bridge, some ambiguous high school friends behind me, and I had to keep dodging camels, which stood shackled to either side of the bridge, and their owners. At one point we had to hopscotch over a row of kids stretched out across the bridge and halfway hidden by a layer of ash. All of a sudden, the camel owners started hollering at each other in concern about the camels braying, but I didn't understand because it was happening far ahead of us. Soon the braying passed down the line of camels far enough to hit us. Now all of the camels were braying in unison rounds of two syllables**, and it was so deafening I had to clamp my hands over my ears to keep going.

Finally I made it to the end of the bridge, where a shounen-hero-type kid stood on a level platform to stop us. Carrying himself rather arrogantly, he wielded an odd, double-javelin-axe-sickle-type weapon whose heads were made of jagged stone but squished like spongy foam. The boy claimed he didn't even need a good sword to defeat us and then singled me out, throwing me a similar weapon. I accepted his challenge, and we fought for a while. I got in a few hits, but he decided he was finished with me. Complaining that I couldn't even finish a fight, he tried to fling me away, but I was angry enough to dig my fingernails into his arms and hang on to him. I swung back around and landed an admittedly weak kick to his crotch before I pulled back.

Suddenly some other allies of mine had come in, and now the kid was surrounded. Knowing that they could handle him for me, I ran off after catching another glance of Naruto. He was ninja-jumping across bridge supports above us, shouting Sasuke's name again.

* I'm pretty sure the teacher was actually one of my former history professors, for Western Civilization. That may have been an addition after the actual dream, though.

**As in, "bray, bray ... bray, bray ... bray, bray." I wasn't sure exactly how to phrase that.

Monday, August 19, 2013

The Four Levels of Inspiration

While I'm sure this varies from person to person, I've developed my own categorisation of that one thing held so dear to writers.

Inspiration Level Zero

"Maybe I can... No. Yeah, just no."

The ground-level reference for the four levels of inspiration, Level Zero is the point where the reserves are dry as Ezekiel's bones. I probably have some sort of plan for the chapter, and maybe I even have a few phrases in mind, but absolutely nothing goes from my head to my fingers, and I don't really care. This is my perpetual state for the story Break Out and rough ideas that vaguely caught my interest like A Murder of Crows.

Inspiration Level One

"Okay, I'm not sure what's going on, but once I get a sentence written, I'm sure the juices will start flowing. ...Okay, maybe once I get the next sentence done... Um, what goes in the next sentence, anyway?"

This is the point where I can pull some stringy, flavourless words out of me if I really try, but it's just not worth it. Maybe I don't have a clear enough idea of what's going on in the scene; maybe I've spent all of my verve on another story, or the same story earlier in the day. If this level persists for a few minutes, it's time to put up the Word document for the time being.

Inspiration Level Two

"So, uh, something happens in this chapter eventually. Not sure what. But hey, words are somehow coming out, so let's roll with it."

This is probably where I spend the brunt of my writing time. It's not very Romantic, but sometimes the words flow silently and unobtrusively. I make progress without feeling terribly excited, but this is the second-best level to feel like I've accomplished something. Beautiful gems can indeed rear their sparkly heads in this level, and joy can abound from this fact. Don't equate satisfaction with inspiration, though.

Inspiration Level Three

"Yes, it's finally the scene I've been waiting for! Writewritewritewrite... okay, this isn't quite turning out right... What am I doing wrong? Um, just keep writing for now..."

Level Three is when I'm honestly excited to write. These are the times that scene that I've watched play in my head several times finally comes into play, and I'm ready to churn it out. My confidence level, however, is no higher than in some lower levels, and once things go a bit sour, I'm not feeling so excited anymore, even if my beloved scene is still in-progress. This was my experience with things like the South Vietnam scenes in Break Out.

Inspiration Level Four


This is why people like me have to write. These are the times the scene falls into place while I'm trying to get to sleep, and throwing myself into the story makes my insides twist with emotion so much I have to take breaks to ensure I'm not just about to throw up. These are the times I grab the nearest notepad—regardless if it was reserved for, say, sketching chibis of some of the other girls at church camp—and write down the scene with so much speed and fury I can barely read the script. These are the times my heart's racing, no method can get the words out fast enough, and time vanishes as much as everything else. These are the times of lovely and utter madness.

Of course, inspiration is more of a continuous variable, so I can't always rank myself on one of these levels exactly. Sometimes I'll be just a bit more inspired than Level Two; sometimes I'll be just a bit less productive than in Level Three.

Do you experience inspiration in a similar matter? How would you rank your current level?

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Piracy Cruise Lines (NFI#28) Excerpt

Herein lies the beginning of Piracy Cruise Lines. I'm tempted to make it the whole first chapter, but it's easy enough to keep writing afterwards I'll try to push myself further. I always feel like my chapters are a lot shorter than normal novels'.

Feedback appreciated!


I just manage to get the door closed behind me before I'm impaled by a rapier. The blade thumps into the thick wood behind me as I fumble with the lock.

"I didn't know you were together, okay?"

My assailant keeps yowling as I stumble back to my skinny, maid-made bed, but I can't make out half of what he's saying. Something about how unbelievable it is that a landlubber managed to outpace him. Yeah, maybe it would be more impressive if you hadn't downed enough rum to fuel a rocket ship.

Panting, I sit on the edge of my bed and glance out the window. Blocking my view of the sky is the tall, toned figure of Francisco.

"How the heck did you get in my room?" I sputter, looking him over as the man outside groans in defeat and staggers away with thumping footfalls.

Tossing a length of curly, brown hair over his shoulder, Francisco snorts. "I merely leapt from my balcony to yours, mi amigo. If you ever put any treasure in your room, you ought to start locking the windows." He turns his neck to look outside, the hooked outline of his nose sharp against the blue sky.

"The fact that you'd just smash your way through the glass aside—" I push some sweaty, blonde bangs out of my face—"our balconies are, like, twelve feet apart."

Francisco scratches his stubbly chin. "I would put it closer to thirteen."

Exhaling, I flop back on the mattress, loosening my scarf. "What I mean is, it's a bit far to jump. If you end up falling into the ocean next time, you can't say I didn't warn you."

He laughs in his usual way—worthy of theatre. "But if I fall into the ocean, I won't be saying much of anything, no?"

"You know what I mean."

Oh, wait, I'm talking about sensible things. Of course he doesn't know what I mean. We don't barge into other people's rooms, Francisco; we're strangers, not fellow crew members. We don't immediately challenge our poor, scrawny neighbors to fisticuffs after we introduce ourselves; that's just… weird.

Of course, I'm the one that decided to spend Fall Break on the PCL Scurvy. Hey, it sounds like fun, this is one of the cruise line's newest ships, and I'll be able to go back to the university newspaper with an article worth reading. Yeah. If I make it that far. It's only the second day aboard, and I've been chased by drunks, had my room broken into several times, and I'm pretty sure some expert pickpockets have swindled me out of my camera because I haven't found it and Francisco hasn't stolen it from me in plain sight. I was going to vlog with that, too…

"Listen," I start, sitting back up.

Francisco looks up from where he had been investigating my curtains. Like I would hide anything good behind those.

"It's formal dinner night, so I'm going to start getting ready for that." I pause, but Francisco just nods and goes back to pulling the curtains around.

"You are welcome to leave my room for the time being," I tell him.

"Oh, come now, Davey." Apparently "Sherman" isn't a good enough pirate name, so he's been abbreviating my middle name. Dropping the curtain, he continues, "If I left your room every time you asked, I would never be in here!"

I open my mouth but really have no good response to that. Eventually, I stand up and say, "Well, leave this time. You have to get ready for dinner, too, don't you?"

"It won't take me long, though."


With a sigh, he says something to himself in Spanish, adjusts his three-cornered hat, and steps out onto the balcony. Before I can inform him my room indeed has a door, he perches on the railing and shouts, "Jerónimo!" Pouncing on his balcony rail, he flips himself back onto solid concrete and waves a goodbye.


Thursday, August 15, 2013

New Fiction Idea #31

Inspired by the new television series Whodunnit?, although I didn't want to sound too similar to it.

Working Title: Contestant Zero

Genre: Horror

Protagonist: Edgard, a faux-British 25-year-old with messy, brown hair and a crisply-cut beard. He's tall, with dark, blue-green eyes and a decently filled-out frame. He scores a bit high on the neuroticism scale, and he can be a little too strongly attracted to the ladies.

Other Main Characters: Jerry, a 24-year-old carpenter and the "hot thang" of the show. Tall, dark, and handsome, he's good at wooing the ladies but not at keeping them. He's a well-known trickster yet so excellent a liar it's hard to believe.
Candace, the 29-year-old host. She has straight, brown hair a bit past her shoulders and a face that requires a devoted makeup entourage. Used to success, she has a charming personality and excellent sense of humour, although they don't always continue when the camera shuts off.
Marisa, the sassy Latina. At 24, she's a bit heavy but still shapely. She tends to be rude towards strangers, but she has a good heart and isn't afraid to show it to those who get close to her. She's trying to get money to pay for nursing school, although she already works as an unofficial nurse for a poor clinic in her rural hometown.
More characters will be involved.

Antagonist: A virus of (officially) unknown origin. Spread by touch, it manifests itself as a rash beginning on the forearms, headache, disorientation, failure of clotting factors, skin lesions, and finally death.

Setting: The set of The Makeup Shakeup, a new reality game show where the amateur contestants live together and compete in movie makeup competitions to win a cash prize. The contestants sleep in bunk beds, two beds to a cabin, with their meals in the mess hall and competitions in the Powder Room, another building. The contestants cannot have phones or computers, lest they leak any spoilers before the show airs.

Plot: The show is in full swing, two contestants already sent home, when one of the contestants falls ill. She's dead before her illness is identified; by then, the set and a few miles radius around it are quarantined to prevent the danger from spreading to the major city (and international airport) nearby. But the contestants and crewmen can't escape, the virus is still ready to spring at any one of them, and few steps have been made to save the quarantined before madness and murder set in.

Point of View: Third person, objective.

Monday, August 12, 2013


For some birthday a long time ago, I got a hands-on book-writing kit with a cover, pages, and thread and glue for binding. I got as far as drawing a cover with someone gagged and tied to a chair next to the title "One Full Turn and a Little More." Then I gave up on that, flipped around the cover-sheet-thing, and drew the cover of "Catastrophye." I hacked out a few pages with a typewriter before abandoning that as well. Here's what I had.

One day I was invited to go to Florida with my best friend, Kasey. I wanted to go, so I went to her house and then we left.
When we got there, we planned what we would do. Later that day, we went to the Everglades without her parents. Kasey and I journeyed to the edge of the swamp. To my horror, an alligator swam out to her and bit her foot! It didn't let go of her foot, and noone [sic] was around. Luckily, I knew that if you hit an alligator in the nose with something hard, the alligator would let go of whatever it had in its mouth. I tried to find just the right thing to hit the alligator with. There was a nearby tree, so I tried to break a branch off. It was hard, but I broke one off. Kasey was just about to get pulled in when I poked the alligator with the branch. It let go of her foot, but it was badly injured. We went to find an emergency center.


Kasey and I kept trying to find an emergency center. No luck so far. We finally came across a house. I figured that they might be able to help. Kasey and I ventured inside. There were indeed people there, and we stood out in the crowd. One of the ladies came up to us and attemted [sic] to help us. She gave us some water for Kasey to put her foot in.


We stayed there for a while, and the nice lady gave us some food. Kasey and I ate the food. It was very good. Later that night, the lady gave us a bed. I liked it. Kasey had to have a speacial [sic] bed because of her foot. The next morning, the nice woman got a phone call. It was for Kasey. Someone had called her. She took the phone. "Hello, is this Ms. [surname removed]?"
"Yes" Kasey said. The man said, "Your parents have been killed"


Kasey dropped the phone. I was shocked. We cried and sobered for quite a while. After some time, we ended. After that,we stayed at the ladie's [sic] house. We had stayed for more than a couple of years when Kasey's foot was healed. Following that, Kasey and I decided to try to go back home. We knew that it would be difficult, but we determined to do it. Then the long journy [sic] began.


We decided to take a difficult route. Kasey and I did this to prevent having to cross any rivers besides the Mississippi. So we went to Miami, then to Orlando (we had to stop for food there). After that , we went to through Orlando to Tallahassee, but on our way there we met Kasey Aunt Neenee and Uncle Keith. They said that Kasey's parents died and gave Kasey her inheritance(which was $5,000!).


Friday, August 9, 2013

New Fan Fiction Idea #15

This is an older idea that I more or less abandoned, but there's a tiny chance I could dust it off and try it. If you're particularly interested, let me know and I might let you write it.

Working Title: Disaster

Fandom: Hetalia: Axis Powers

Genre Tags: Horror/Tragedy

Protagonist: No one main character.

Other Main Characters: Includes at least Ukraine, Japan, and America. Should be quite a few more, though.

Antagonist: Different in every chapter; sometimes natural disasters, sometimes accidents, sometimes attackers.

Plot: Every chapter is centred on what the nation personification feels when a major disaster occurs on his or her soil. Earthquakes cause uncontrollable tremors, etc.

Setting: Each chapter occurs during a disaster, with a corresponding chapter title (such as 26 April 1986).

Point of View: Third person, limited to the subject of the chapter.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Further Attempts to Be Artistic

Although Mayflies has drifted quite a bit from its original conception—most notably in the setting, which is now ancient Mayan—I thought I'd post my attempt at its cover here. I actually requested a fellow NaNoWriMo participant to make one for me. She stopped after three, and I decided to combine my favourite elements from each, although I don't think I did terribly well.

My name goes in the orange area's lower right sort-of corner in the same font/colour as the title but in a much smaller size.

This uses the background from the second cover, the font from the third cover, and my own (shabby) version of the whatever-it-is in orange from the first cover. Basically, I really, really like the background from the second cover, but the original felt too "soft" without the orange/red. The third cover is my favourite overall; I just like the feather background here better than the birds on that one (thematically; artistically, they're both great).

So, tell me what you like, and I'll figure out what elements work. Sound like a deal?

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

And There It Went

(Warning: Ranting ahead that will make you fear for my sanity.)

Inspiration is a fragile thing. Sometimes it just won't come; sometimes I finally grasp it only for my mood to shred it. Usually that will happen if I'm depressed by a lack of reviews or some such thing; however, there's a bigger emotional threat to my inspiration.

Few things will ruin my mood more than being interrupted.

I'm OCD enough about finishing things normally. I'll be biting back growls if a friend visits me in the middle of my doing a homework assignment, even if I could use a break and really like talking to her, just because I want to get things finished.

That, however, pales in comparison to how I feel when I'm interrupted in writing.

I have a tendency to stare at a computer without inspiration for a while in the name of discipline, and then, once I find something, I go after it like a maniac. And that's usually when my mother decides I need to rub her back, my father decides I need to rub the calcium deposit on his foot, the dryer goes off, Dad wants me to take out the trash, empty the dishwasher, sweep the floor, or do something totally non-urgent that in his philosophy always has to be done right this moment. All while expressing extreme disapproval at my slacking around all day beforehand. And by the time I've done my errands, suddenly an hour of my writing time is gone, something else to attend to is going on, and I'm so ticked off I'm no longer feeling any inspiration for anything (except possibly ways to orphan myself in a story), which in turn makes me more ticked off.

And the worst part is, that's just how life is. No one's going to just let me lock myself in my room all day and try to write. There are always things to be done and, frankly, if I don't do them immediately I'll probably forget about them. Everything's justified; I'm just whiny.

Any advice? Any similar issues in your creative life?

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Tally It Up

In honour of reaching my thirtieth New Fiction Idea, I've decided to do another special. With my current ideas, here are a few tallies:

Main Character

(3 stories with no one main character: WarThe RulesChemists)

14 Males: Mayflies,  Macbay Transportation Services, Family of Ibro, Mount, Revolution, A Murder of Crows, NFI#17, Wanderers, Carmine, Figments, Dynblaidd, Roughhouse, The Adventures of Donny Quigley from Smudgen, Kansas, Piracy Cruise Lines
13 Females: Chasers, Crumbling, Intolerant, Entrapped, Special, The Heiress, NFI#14, A Job to Do, NFI#23, Bloom, NFI#27, Blood, Brain, Body, Home By the Sea

14 Teenagers: MayfliesCrumblingIntolerantEntrappedSpecialFamily of IbroNFI#14NFI#17FigmentsBloomRoughhousePiracy Cruise LinesBlood, Brain, Body, Home By the Sea
13 Adults: ChasersMacbay Transportation ServicesThe HeiressMountRevolutionA Murder of CrowsWanderersCarmineDynblaiddA Job to DoNFI#23The Adventures of Donny Quigley from Smudgen, Kansas, NFI#27

17 Whites: Emiliaunnamed of IntolerantSophiaGavinAndromacheTheodoreHannahLorenzoTommyJoeyAlizarinMalcolmMHamiltonMichelleSherman, Felicia
2 Asians: Macbay, Ena
2 Native Americans: Jonathan and Matthew
1 Arabic: Andrea
5 Mixed: Pink (white/Hispanic), Kori (white/Native American), Aaron (werewolf/white), Danielle (white/Arabic), Donny (Asian/white)
1 Non-Human: Davey (nightingale)

Other Main Characters

32 Whites: "Red", Clyde, Cora, Jordan, Athena, Edwin, Victor, Josephine, ClaudiusSharaAngus, Daphne, Dobson and Crick, Corey, Deirdre, Jonah, Stannum, Annette, Deborah, Cerise, Corey, GalenEnrichGodricSheltonTimaeusLawrenceTerry, Sander, Francisco, Darla
4 Blacks: "Ink", Darrell, Crystal, Henry
3 Asians: Loretta May, Ian, John
1 Native American: Julian
1 Hispanic: Abel
8 Mixed: Joel (white/Latino), Kaliause (Vietnamese/alien), Neal (white/Arabic), Kimberley (white/Indian),  Andraste (white/elf), John (white/Thai), Cayman (black/Hispanic/Asian), Rachel (white/Japanese)
2 Non-Humans: Benny (raven), Liutas (lion-type alien)

23 Teenagers: "Red"JoelAbelCoraJordanAthenaEdwinVictorJosephineAngusDaphneCoreyKaliauseCoreyDarrellCrystalGalenAndrasteLawrenceJohnTerry, Rachel, Henry
29 Adults: "Ink"ClydeJulianLoretta MayClaudiusSharaDobson and CrickIanDeirdreJonahBennyStannumLiutasAnnetteNealDeborahKimberleyCeriseLennonEnrichGodricSheltonTimaeus, Sander, Cayman, Francisco, Darla, John


12 Specifically Known: The RulesMacbay Transportation ServicesFamily of IbroNFI#17WanderersDynblaiddChasersThe HeiressA Job to DoNFI#23BloomHome By the Sea
14 Generally Known: WarMountRevolutionChemistsCarmineRoughhouseThe Adventures of Donny Quigley from Smudgen, KansasCrumblingIntolerantSpecialNFI#14FigmentsNFI#27Blood, Brain, Body
4 Spoilers: MayfliesA Murder of CrowsPiracy Cruise LinesEntrapped

Of those characterised

14 Males: Max WebbClark SeeleyPeterKevinAristaeusLennonJohnStuartStephenRickWilliamChesterSmithNoah
9 Females: VondaSeonaShelbyLeahLeslieVanessaCassandraSharonCheryl

1 Child: Shelby
5 Teenagers: KevinLeahStephenVanessaChester
17 Adults: Max WebbClark SeeleyVondaPeterSeonaAristaeusLennonJohnLeslieStuartRickCassandraWilliamSharonSmithCherylNoah

11 Whites: Clark SeeleyPeterAristaeusShelbyLeahJohnStephenCassandraChesterCherylNoah
2 Blacks: StuartRick
2 Asians: Max WebbKevin
1 Indian: William
1 Arabic: Sharon
4 Mixed: Lennon (white/Native American), Leslie (white/Hispanic), Vanessa (white/Korean/Hispanic), Smith (white/black)
2 Non-Humans: Vonda (greenish humanoid alien), Seona (elf)

Primary Genre

5 Science Fiction: CrumblingWarChemistsNFI#17NFI#27
4 Dystopian: IntolerantNFI#14BloomRoughhouse
4 Steampunk: EntrappedMountWanderersMacbay Transportation Services
9 Fantasy: ChasersMayfliesSpecialThe HeiressCarmineDynblaiddNFI#23Family of Ibro
2 Horror: FigmentsThe RulesHome By the Sea
2 Action/Adventure: A Job to DoBlood, Brain, Body
1 Mystery: A Murder of Crows
3 Comedy: RevolutionThe Adventures of Donny Quigley from Smudgen, KansasPiracy Cruise Lines


10 Past: MayfliesEntrappedThe HeiressMountWanderersCarmineDynblaiddNFI#23Macbay Transportation ServicesFamily of Ibro
9 Present: ChasersSpecialRevolutionThe RulesA Murder of CrowsThe Adventures of Donny Quigley from Smudgen, KansasFigmentsPiracy Cruise LinesHome By the Sea
11 Future: CrumblingIntolerantWarChemistsNFI#14NFI#17A Job to DoBloomNFI#27RoughhouseBlood, Brain, Body

Point of View

12 First Person: MayfliesSpecialWarMountThe RulesChemistsA Murder of CrowsWanderersFamily of IbroFigmentsPiracy Cruise LinesBlood, Brain, Body
12 Third Person Limited: ChasersIntolerantThe HeiressCarmineDynblaiddA Job to DoNFI#27Macbay Transportation ServicesNFI#14NFI#17RoughhouseHome By the Sea
6 Third Person Omniscient: CrumblingEntrappedRevolutionNFI#23The Adventures of Donny Quigley from Smudgen, KansasBloom

Monday, August 5, 2013

New Fiction Idea #30

Because the main character wouldn't leave me alone, and I kind of wish Cage had an original fiction version. (A more direct-from-fan-fiction one may be in the works still, since this doesn't follow closely.)  Like another idea, this was inspired by a Genesis song. Also like its sibling, it feels a bit lacking yet.

Working Title: Home By the Sea

Genre: Urban Fantasy/Horror

Protagonist: Andrea, a 15-year-old girl of Persian descent. She has very long hair she keeps down and is quite pretty. She's very submissive and quiet and has an average frame.

Other Main Character: Henry, a 17-year-old black boy with very short hair. He's fierce and moralistic, sometimes to a condescending extent. Like Andrea, he has some stupendous regenerative abilities.

Antagonists: Cheryl and Noah, a young married couple. Cheryl has reddish-brown hair pulled back in a bun and slim glasses; Noah has short, dark hair and a lot of freckles. Both are disillusioned scientists with a fair number of unsavoury connections.

Setting: Modern-day. Andrea is initially kept at the couple's home and laboratory on a small, beautiful island. If escape is managed, she will be hiding in an American city or two.

Plot: Andrea had been abandoned by her parents after they labelled her a demon child, and she was passed around a few foster homes before being discovered by the antagonists. After securing legal custody over her, they whisk her away to the island and begin harvesting her organs—she can grow back anything but her heart, regardless of whether the operation is initially lethal—to sell them. Andrea is soon hammered down into hopeless obedience; however, some years later, Henry comes in to break her out. While she's sure she remembers him from somewhere, she isn't entirely cooperative, and Henry will be lucky to get her out without becoming a victim himself.

Point of View: Third person, limited to Andrea.

Saturday, August 3, 2013

New Fan Fiction Idea #14

I seem to be attracted to lighthearted fandoms, only to inevitably write fan fiction where all of the characters are killed brutally. Ah, well. It happens.

Working Title: Never-Ending Girls' Alliance

Fandom: Hunger Games/K-ON! crossover

Genre Tags: Horror/Tragedy

Length: Short multichapter (probably six chapters)

Protagonist: None specifically.

Other Main Characters: Yui, Ritsu, Mio, Tsumugi, and Azusa. Due to being the same gender, they will all have to be from different districts. I'm keeping the Japanese names to keep track of them more easily.

Antagonist: Various original characters, Careers or otherwise.

Plot: The main characters are reaped; all but Azusa (who joins mid-Games) form an alliance and go in together. The actual story consists of a short introduction and one chapter for each member who dies (and possibly one for the Victor, if it's one of them).

Setting: The 59th annual Hunger Games, held in a school-like arena (without roofs).

Point of View: Third person, omniscient.

I thought trying to pare everything down into a few clips would be interesting, as opposed to doing a whole novel. I'm not overly inspired for this, so I don't want to spend too much time with it, although I do want to experiment.

Friday, August 2, 2013

Wanderers (NFI#18) Revisited

You may recall that for the story Wanderers, I found my setting and haphazardly put together a few characters and a plot that weren't particularly inspired. Now I have a few alternatives to play with in this world. None are really complete, but at least they're there.

Alternative 1: The Original

Overall, everything is peaceful and there is little crime. Joey has finally separated from his parents and his main group of friends to marry Annette, who is now expecting. Then Peter swipes Annette's light jacket (containing some precious family heirloom) and runs. None of their group can quite catch up, and it's exceptionally difficult to track someone who doesn't want to be found.

Alternative 2: The Speed Demon

While anything other than walking is very much frowned upon, sometimes running just isn't fast enough to do the job. Meet Jonas Patriot, the emergency medicine expert whose motorbike puts him in more danger than most of his clients. Being of this world, his location at any one time is as unsure as a dog sniffing chocolate, but he spreads his telegraph address everywhere he walks, and there are plenty of stations along the bridges to holler a new job at him. If the injured or ill person is near, he might walk, but more often than not he has to break out the bike. Not that he minds terribly.

Alternative 3: The Tinkerer

It's a bit difficult to keep walking the bridges when one is carrying all manners of prototypes and tools. Nevertheless, Sterling does his best to keep his mountain of a backpack balanced as he waves his inventions at anyone who might use them. It's difficult for technology to catch on, however, and his uselessness in other ventures isn't good. After crossing the same bridges without being of service too anyone a few too many times, the grocers start to freeze him out, and the success of his next creation may be a matter of life and death.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Shouting at a Brick Wall

It's hard to tell what readers think if they don't say anything. This is a rather frustrating fact, although I understand that there are plenty of legitimate reasons for readers not to comment.

For example, I get a lot of hits from foreign countries that aren't predominantly English-speaking. If the reader is not very confident in his or her English, I can totally understand why he or she would want to avoid saying anything the wrong way.

I'm not very good at critiques myself, so I don't want to review if I don't feel I have to—usually for oneshot fan fictions or other completed fan fictions that I can just add to my favourites to express approval—but I do try to give a few comments on things that affected me and encourage the author to post the next chapter soon. It just seems like a way to show respect for the writing and what the writer goes through.

Recently, I checked out the profile of someone who reviewed Cage, and I saw one section that I really loved:

"You know that thing you as a reader, or writer for a matter of fact, call too lazy to review? To us as writers it scares us and we begin to think:

Is my writing really that bad?

Does anybody even read this stuff?

What's wrong with it? Grammar? Spelling? My style? SOMEBODY TELL ME!

I suck at this... I quit.
Why do I even write anymore?

That's what causes some of your favorite stories on fanfiction to become abandoned, because the author lost their will to write. Every time we go without a review we get discouraged and that little sense of doubt in the back of our had starts nagging at us, telling us how much our writing sucks. When I was a reader I didn't believe in reviewing. But now as a writer, I review all the stories I possibly can. All it takes is a few seconds... Be kind about it too."

Thankfully I've been blessed to find someone patient enough to review just about everything I write, fan fiction or blog, so my situation really isn't that bad if no one else gives me feedback. Still, sometimes I have to wonder. I can see that people have viewed a chapter or post, but what did they think? Did it bore them so they never even finished? Did they think it was absolutely stupid and just held their tongues to avoid being rude? Did they just get redirected accidentally and not want to see it at all?

Then there's the case of Break Out, a fiction that has more or less moved entirely out of my interest. Still, I continued it because some reviewers pleaded so earnestly that it was a good story and something I should never consider abandoning. Then all of the reviews per chapter dribbled off to three or four. Now, that's a great number in my opinion, for, say, The Long and Winding Road or Cage. Those stories, however, still cry out to be written. Break Out is only there for the readers, few of which seem to care about my efforts enough to lend a bit of time to review. Am I right in feeling ripped off, or am I just whiny? Do I have to once again threaten to end the series for those enamoured reviewers to return? Has the uninspired quality sunk so low no one thinks I deserve a review?

I've always been insecure about the quality of my writing, and I think some dose of that is inevitable for the lot of us. But as the quote on my eBook cover goes, "A writer only begins a book. A reader finishes it." Writing is a cooperative enterprise, and I want to feel like we're all actually cooperating. I'm sure I'll feel a bit differently as to how that relationship works when I have some stories for sale instead of just available for free on, but I'll always want some feedback.

As far as the blog goes, I'm not too worried about stopping it. The New Fiction Idea #So-and-So series in particular has been helpful to me to keep track, even if I don't get all that much feedback from possible readers of the story. That's not to say I'm not disappointed in the same manner when something like New Short Story Idea #3 doesn't get any comments, but I can handle that. This blog isn't all that much work, and it's one of those things that I feel like I'm doing for myself. It's intended to generate a bigger fanbase for when I publish, but maybe it will get there. I'll just keep throwing my ramblings out there and hoping someone will respond.