Wednesday, 11 March 2015

Blog Challenges and WiPpet Wednesday

Alex and Milos. This is actually my most
favourite 3D render of them... and ever.
Sooooo.  I signed up to the Blogging From A to Z challenge fairly early on last month which... arguably was incredibly stupid of me, considering my mood at the time.

My mood is a little improved now, but instead I seem to have developed a phobia of or anxiety about writing—which is patently stupid, I know—which is throwing a bit of a spanner into the works because, let's face it, I've got nothing I can write for 26 days about except stories.

My ever-supportive NaNo group's only comment was, "yeah, you won't be getting that done then."

I guess I should do it just to show them exactly where they can put that sentiment, eh?

In somewhat better news, certain characters are starting to become more vocal which should help.  Just lately it's been supernatural government agent Alex and his genetically-modified dokkalfa partner Milos, the two characters I've written the most about over the years (so naturally they're the ones no-one knows anything about).  They've both managed to pick their own "theme songs" over the course of time which should hopefully help.  Hopefully.

If you want a sneak-peek at Alex's theme song, it's...  well, right here.  Small profanity warning.

3OH!3 - Colorado Sunrise

He's an odd one, that man.

If anyone has any hints or ideas on how to write more than snippets of conversation without my hands shaking and my brain freezing up, I would desperately love to know, because I really want to write one of the Fayth/RQ music-inspired ones...

In a less self-pitying note, though, I recommend checking out the challenge link.  It certainly looks interesting.

WiPpet Wednesday

It's that time of the week again: K. L. Schwengel's awesome blog hop where all the participants share snippets of their works-in-progress.  You can check out everyone else's and sign up yourself over here.  It's well worth it, everyone is lovely.

Today's WiPpet maths is convoluted, just so I can get my own way.  It's the 11th March 2015, so my maths goes something like this: 11 × 3 = 33.  2 + 0 + 1 + 5 = 8.  33 - 8 = 25.  So it's 25 lines from the second chapter of The Rose Queen.

Having rescued RQ from Evil Crewman #1 (thanks Gloria, perfect title while he looks for a name!), Fayth has found that it's only recently a few people have been acting quite so threateningly towards him.  Unfortunately, the good news is a bit short-lived...
“Where are you taking him?”  The question came from an older crewman with laughter lines around his eyes, his neat black hair fading to white at the temples, who blocked Fayth’s path.
“The Captain asked to see him.”  Fayth did his best to ignore the Rose Queen’s sudden nervous fidgeting.
“Really?”  He asked, quirking up one eyebrow.
Fayth nodded curtly.  “So if you could please let us pass...”
“You see,” the crewman said slowly, grey eyes flicking from head to foot and back again, “I’m the Captain and I don’t seem to recall asking anyone to fetch him.  Care to enlighten me?”
The doors were right there.  Fayth gave the Captain his best innocent grin, carefully taking a firm hold of the Rose Queen’s wrist.  “Sorry, my mistake.  Must’ve been the Vice-Captain instead.  Anyway, it was nice to meet you, but since we’ve never been formally introduced, well, I’ve heard I should never talk to strangers—”
The Captain’s mouth opened, but Fayth had no idea what he actually said: he’d already broken into a run, dragging a stumbling Rose Queen after him.  He almost threw the poor man through the door, spinning and slamming the hackpad’s white plastic unit against the override controls with his momentum.  Its tiny screen flashed with digits.
The door slid closed inches from the Captain’s face.  A deafening alarm filled the corridor that almost, but not quite, drowned out the Captain pounding against the metal and the sound of shouting at the distant end of the docking bay corridor.  The white strip lighting dimmed to an ominous red that flashed in time with the klaxon.
“You heard you should never talk to strangers?”  The Rose Queen snorted, slumping back against the closed door and giving Fayth a distinctly amused look.  The red glow turned his eyes a disconcerting shade of purple.  “Because that was so effective when I used it ten minutes ago, wasn’t it?”


  1. OMG that's hysterical! The whole bit, but particularly RQ's reaction at the end. Superb. I am really enjoying this.

    1. I'm really glad you enjoyed it, it's one of my favourite sections to be honest!

  2. That last line. :-) Awesome. :-)

  3. These two are lots of fun. Especially together. Maybe, instead of writing, you could just fantasize, let them swell through you until they just pour out of you with no effort or shaking....

    That's what I do...and it doesn't feel like writing nearly as much as playing.

    1. To be honest, that's usually how I do it. It doesn't normally feel like work, it's more that it usually feels like it's just escaping onto the screen, usually dragging a whole lot of chaos in its wake. But just lately it feels like... it's hard to explain, but like there's some blockage between brain and fingers. I can see everything perfectly--vividly, in fact, which is probably why I keep ending up with notes in weird places (two different computers, two notebooks and the paper covering my tablet!)--it's just... refusing to leave my head right now, for some reason.

      I guess maybe I should give it time... Alex has a very short temper so it won't be long before he's yelling at me, I'm sure. :)

  4. Great moment. I love the twist when the crewman they're talking to turns out to be the captain. Didn't see that one coming.

    I go through periods of self-doubt when it comes to my writing, and I try to just keep pushing forward. I'm not really sure if there's a specific trick to overcoming our fears about writing. If there is, I'd sure like someone to share it with me. I think the key is just to write every day, even if it's only a few words. Eventually you'll find some way to get unstuck.

    1. I'm really glad you enjoyed it. It's actually one of my favourite scenes, so it was fun to share. :)

      I think you've probably got the specific trick right there, to be honest... I really need to just sit down and tell the characters in my head to get talking, haha. Hopefully they'll rise to the challenge, it used to be pretty tough to get them to shut up in the first place.

      Thank you for the encouragement. :)

  5. Wow, I am SO THERE with you on the writing blockage. I haven't written in....well, much too long, and I'm going to run out of WIPpet stuff, soon. :-P Sometimes doing word sprints with a friend can help. Not always, but sometimes, especially if you do have ideas. Right now I feel like I've forgotten how to write at all and the well is dry, so you're at least ahead of me in that you have ideas! If you want to try the sprinting thing, hit me up on Twitter. :-)

    I too love the last line - it made me LOL quite loudly. I also love the SURPRISE!Captain. And his response. Great snippet, overall, and I still love those two.

    1. I may have to take you up on the word sprints, since the start of April is approaching at a horrific speed! Though if you're looking for inspiration, there's still enough time to sign up to the Blogging A-Z challenge. ;) (Me, try to spread the impending terror? Never. *innocent grin* )

      I'm so glad you enjoyed the snippet. :) It's one of those things where the more you write, the more you can't tell if it's amusing or just ridiculous or what...

  6. Oh, the Rose Queen made me laugh out loud! What a neat confrontation with the Captain . . . klaxons ringing! What possibly could happen next? Re A to Z in April, I too signed up and don't have a clue what I'll be writing about . . . except that current wip (maybe). So since you want to elaborate your characters (or aspects of your characters), why not use A to Z to write back stories? Or anxiety, as in writing anxiety, starts with A. You could explore a different aspect of writing each day . . . with the goal of coming up with strategies to surmount any problems. Already, W could be world building tips . . . . always useful for those of us who want to escape reality. Persevere! Write on!

    1. Haha, I'm really glad it made you laugh! As to what happens next... well, it's not long now. *grins*

      I think I'm likely to end up writing a mix of back stories, future stories and totally random ones, where each letter of the alphabet corresponds to a character's name. This has thrown a spanner into the works for later in the alphabet, but I'm oddly well-off for Y and Z...

      I think I'm the last person who could write tips (especially on anxiety, I become a quivering heap far too often to be any help to anyone), but it's a brilliant idea. Are you going to do something similar? Or have you had any newer ideas? I'll be sure to check out your page every day during the event--I'm almost getting quite excited about it now, haha!

  7. Fayth had the right idea - bluff until you can't anymore. Then run. Anxious to see what happens next.

    1. The more I wrote, the more I suspected that "run" is an integral part of many of Fayth's Plan-Bs...!

  8. Swinging by for A-Z but enjoyed your post, I picked themes where I could keep it short and simple, I did it a couple of years ago, and last year knew it just would not work. Enjoyed your excerpt.

    #Blogging from A-Z swinging by to meet and greet. I am 471 and 472 in the long list, with MOVIES & What's in a NAME Hope you swing by to 4covert2overt and Defining Ways. Hope to meet up everywhere @M_C_V_Egan
    .⋱ ⋮ ⋰.,;***;,.⋱ ⋮ ⋰
    ⋰ ⋮ ⋱..._/l\_...⋰ ⋮ ⋱
    ♫ ƤҼƌҪҼ ƌƝƊ ĻƠṼҼ ॐ βԼƐֆֆїɳɠֆ ƌƝƊ βԼїֆֆ ♫...


Comments always welcome!