Friday, November 8, 2013

7 Quick Takes: Vol 21

I swear I didn’t mean to have this many references to blood and horror!

1.       Been a while since I’ve done this. Of course, blogging in general has fallen off. Actually, a lot of things have; I’m becoming more reclusive by the day. Reclusion is like tasting human blood; once you get the hunger

2.       You know, of all the posts you read on today’s 7 Quick Takes Lists (hosted by Conversion Diary, of course), that last one’s probably gonna be the creepiest. Sorry, my mind comes up with weird analogies. Let me clarify; I’m temporarily letting my reclusive nature run away with me due to a number of factors, including an increase in allotted writing time. I do not, as of yet, have a taste for human blood.

3.       Remember a couple weeks ago when I said my external hard-drive, will all my video files broke? Well, turns out it’s a ‘Level 3’ damage, meaning that it’d cost over $1,300 to possibly recover anything, in addition to the $250 I already put down. So, that’s it; it’s gone. I’m not emptying my bank account for the possibility of recovering some files. Good bye every single one of my video files! Or, not quite; I remembered I still have an old, smaller external hard-drive, which included a goodly chunk of my video files (I can’t just use it permanently because 1. It’s too small for my purposes and 2. It’s formatted for a PC and I’m on Mac now). Not all by any stretch, but at least I didn’t actually have to start from scratch. Thank God for small miracles!

4.       I’ve been doing a lot of my writing recently at a small coffee shop not far from my apartment. It’s small, fairly quiet (occasionally it’s more, ahem, ‘cozy’ than I would like. Being the recluse that I am, I prefer at all times to maintain at least ten-feet of space between me and anyone whom I have not given express permission to approach), and has really good coffee and cookies. Very conducive to working, and I tend to get a lot more done there than at my apartment.

5.       Speaking of writing, some of you may have seen the report of what I’m working on the other day. For those who missed it, it’s basically “1st Samuel with dinosaurs.” Of course, I’ve also got ideas coming out of my ears; more stuff for the Gods and Monsters universe, a dream-based story that’s existed in one form or another for years, my ‘Teddy Roosevelt vs. the Jersey Devil’ historical fiction series, and a Se7en-style Batman fan-fiction, to name the most prominent pieces at the moment. So much to write, so little time!

6.       I’ve been reading H.P. Lovecraft for the first time. My first story was Dagon, which was something of a disappointment: falling asleep in the middle of the ocean and waking up in the middle of a desert covered in dead fish has it’s creepiness, but on the whole the story just didn’t convince me of the narrators insanity. I was thinking “okay, so you discovered a lost race of fishmen; get over it. Julie Adams got abducted by one of those things, and you don’t see her going all emo about it.” My second story was Pickman’s Model, which was refreshingly and delightfully creepy. “No, no, trust me; it’s just the rats. They keep trying to get out of that old well…”

7.       When it comes to music, recently I’ve mostly been incessantly playing songs from Newsies (yes, the Disney movie from the early 90’s starring a very young Christian Bale). See, I like musicals, and when I discover a new one I have the habit of fixating on a few songs and playing them repeatedly for a couple weeks. Seize the day!

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

On Writing

Back when I was still blogging, I occassionally made reference to my 'current writing project with a very marketable premise.' Since November is writing month (not really doing Nanowrimo, but I'm trying to set a goal of finishing the first draft during the month), I figure I might let you in on a few things:

The title is (tentatively)  Lost City of the Dimetrodons. The premise is an epic-fantasy book-to-series set in a world where humans live alongside dinosaurs and other prehistoric beasts. The dinosaurs aren't the sentient beings of the Dinotopia books, but just animals of varying degrees of intelligence, savagery, and domestication. I'm taking it as a challenge to make them as accurate as I can. So, for instance, the theropods are almost all covered in feathers, most pterosaurs are much too small to carry a human, and the big predators don't come running for the great taste of people. Of course, telling a good story and making it fun is more important, so if it ever becomes a toss up between science and storytelling, storytelling wins (for instance, I think my pteranodon is slightly bigger than it really was; six-feet tall standing instead of about four-to-five, depending on who you ask).

So, I've got the premise. I've got the core cast of characters (they fit rather neatly into the 'five man band' model, though I don't think they're stock fantasy figures by any stretch. At least, if anyone else has, say, a 3 1/2 foot, pteranodon-riding version of Cyrano de Bergerac, I'm not aware of it). I kind of have the plot, though it could use some streamlining. I just need to work on shaping it into a coherent whole. More on that as it develops.

Meanwhile, Hendricks continues its posting, and I just realized I need to edit/finish a particularly large chapter before it is scheduled to go up on Friday!