Saturday, November 29, 2008

Purple bar!

Which is to say, I finally reached 50k. Entered the novel into the official NaNoWriMo validator and all that. Thanks to the write-in group at the Panera for their encouragement!

The story's not done yet, but it's close. Just a few more scenes to do. *crosses fingers* I have a few plot issues to work out, but eh, it could be worse. My daughter finished her story today, too. She even let me read it!
(Well, I told her she had to in order to have me buy her a reward!) I can't buy me a reward until I get to the end of my novel, which ends where "Jack" begins. More or less.

Cliche of the day: "They're dead, Jim." In which a character has to complete the Mission of Vital Importance on their own because everyone else is dead.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

...although the word "Thanksgiving" is beginning to look really strange to me. (From repetition and lack of sleep, probably). 'Thanking' is an odd concept, isn't it? Traditionally, the fairies don't get along with the idea. However, you'd expect it to exist among social animals in general. But it's an easy way to make an alien seem more alien, if it doesn't understand the concept of thanks. Me, I'm thankful I'm alive, my family is alive (and the ones who aren't we still remember), and we have what we need for our lives (more than we need, really).

Starting the day at 47000ish words. Not sure how much writing I'll get done today. Story done in 3000 words? Heh. Counting up scenes needed...hmm...it'll be close. We'll see.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Agh! Not done yet?!

So...let's see...I seem to be 5000 words behind at this point. I'll blame it on being sick, etc. etc. Heh. Today I finally feel warm again. Yay. Of course, none of that helps my NaNo. Stupid horrible story. *kicks it viciously a few more times* The characters sound the same, the plot is incoherant, there's no romance, none of the named characters has died yet, I hate prophecies, and the end is nigh.

Helike showed up again, but I'm not sure what to do with him. Tomo is threatening to sacrifice himself for Lin, but I wish he wouldn't, that would just be annoying, as that would leave Lin in the awkward position of inhabiting his body. The Ala Moana shopping mall is the stuff of nightmares! And I didn't even mention the food court. Meanwhile, Lucia has to reach the Abbey and Baphomet has to break the siege. The shadows are chasing the wrong woman! I actually wanted Number 37 to have a bunch of stray shadows to work with. I'll have to figure something out later.

Cliche of the day: You could be the next winner in our "Lord of Babylon" sweepstakes! Temptations and car chases! Well, it would have been more of a chase if the chasees had had some kind of vehicle instead of being on foot.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Anti-climactic drivel

And I can't spell anymore, either. One more week and 8k more words to go (to the official finish, anyway.) This year's story is shorter than previous years (I envisioned it as a novella going in), so I have a remote chance of actually getting to the end of the story.

Another year, another arranged marriage. Maybe. It'll give me a chance to use the Cathedral. (Hey, it's a stop on the Armageddon Tour, right?) Not using the Bank of Babylon, as I didn't build that one. I see Lin, Number 37, Lucia, and Anam all converging at or near the Cathedral for their showdown.

But meanwhile we still have this stupid siege around Babylon. I didn't want to write about a siege OR a big battle scene. But the siege is there. Because of course Baalzy didn't care for Baphomet's New World Order. (Oh yes, I even put in the Crystal City! Not just a stop on the Blue and Yellow lines anymore! I did move it aboveground.) The Host is just observing for now.

Cliche of the day: The ugly, comic-relief demon. He's going to die in...hmm...maybe 5000 words from now?

ArmageddonMUSH fanwank moment: Mecha-chimera ants! Though I doubt anyone's going to bother teaching them to type.

Goal for today: 46000 words.

I have my doubts. If I could do 4k a day, I'd be done already.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Took a sick day...

Felt like shit yesterday. Was running a bit of a fever, very tired. Wrote a couple hundred words then fell asleep.

So today...gotta make it up. At 41K now. Goal is 44K before I go to bed tonight. Plot is bleah. Writing a bunch of pointless conversations/arguments. I'm not feeling very descriptive today. The titanium spork made it into the NaNo. *facepalms* It's the end of the world and we're eating apple cinnamon oatmeal with our titanium sporks...

I suppose people have to eat something. But if you could conjure anything you could imagine, would it be oatmeal? Meh.

Seriously. Gotta do something with Baal-zebul's legions, the Host, and the rest. I keep thinking "The Noddites have Babylon under siege", but I'm not sure how that's supposed to make any sense at all.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Behind, behinder...ugh...

Sitting at 1000 words behind my goal. Wait, no, I can't sit. Must...keep...writing...

This is the week where I get depressed at how crappy my novel is. First draft or no, the characters aren't consistent, their reactions don't make sense, the plot bores me, the setting has serious problems, and I don't feel like writing.

Well. I never feel like writing except when I'm definitely NOT writing, so that doesn't mean much. I've been whining all month. And I do that every year. Genetic predisposition to whining! Heh. Mother and daughter whine-fest! (Except she's complaining about her homework at the moment, not her NaNo story.)

Right...so...let's see if I get caught up at all tonight. 4 hrs or so to go...

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Slowly we drag along...

...to 34K last night right at midnight. Lin kisses a toad, then visits the demonic coin mint of Belfagor. Number 37 and Lucia sleep (together, platonically) and talk. Guzman suffers Megalomaniac Confessions from Amaury. Looks like Anam may be Mad Jack after all, by the time we're done with him (toad demon blowing up in his face, Number 37 messing with him, then Mad Tom the Piper. The Piper is probably the one who names him Jack. He's probably also the peddler with the magic beans.) But we haven't started yet, so who knows.

Cliche of the day: You are my helpless prisoner and I tell you my PLAN!

Moral of the day: Kissing demonic toads is bad for your health. That turning into a prince thing is, like, totally false.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

30K...*gasp*

Dragged myself to 30k just before midnight last night. Writing...oh geez..."learning powers" scenes. I hate those. I always hated having to send in logs of "instruction RP" on online games to justify getting stats. The problem is that it's always learning some kind of supernatural shit, and if I could really learn/teach that, I'd be doing it in real life! So of course I had to do "learn superpowers" scenes for TWO of my characters. Gah! As a GM I was (and still am) prone to randomly threatening characters with death and other mishaps during their power-up scenes. To be fair, I ought to do it to my characters, too. Guzman has troubles enough. Lucia...well...we'll see if anything bad happens to Lucia.

*cues power-up montage scene with inspirational song*

Left Lin running away somewhere in Hell. (Not sure where she's gonna go, and if it's any improvement over the fate she was previously contemplating.) The Wild Hunt is about to descend on Lucia and Number 37. Guzman is going stir crazy in his genie bottle.

Cliche of the day: the Power-up Montage.

ArmageddonMUSH fanwank moment: A chessboard! (remember Alex Korchnoi and his soul-eating chessboard? Probably not. But I have a log!) Well, the one in the NaNo is not that chessboard, and there was no chess game, but I was thinking of that when I was writing. ("If faith is worthless, what use is chess?" Poor Kate! "Hmm, black or white? Yes, that says it all, doesn't it?")

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Nooooo!!!

So I come home from the local write-in, and putter about to waste some time. I watch the new Children in Need Doctor Who Special (2008) and...

WTF! AGHHHH! Somebody kill it! Kill it now! This is the worst new Who CiN special yet, and they've all been pretty bad. Somebody shoot the tenth Doctor, and let's hope it takes this time. But FFS don't let him regenerate into that Doctor. Shades of the third Doc but with only a fraction of the charm. And the third Doc was never my favorite anyway. Ugh. Meanwhile, in 2 minutes, they manage to show all the things I hate about the current Doctor Who: goofy grin, smug Doctor, spinning camera, snowy pseudo-Christmas-Carol landscape, "You fick or somefing?", "ALON-ZEEEEE!", "I'm the Doctor, the one, the only, and the best...this is a job for a Timelord!" *bangs head repeatedly*

...and I even liked "The Runaway Bride" and thought the...uh...one with the Titanic in space...was ok. But damn.

...not that I'm going to go work on my novel or anything now.

Edit: ok, maybe more of a 6th Doctor. And probably a fake anyway. Maybe the rest of the episode will be better. One can only hope. It's too bad, though. I really thought David Tennant had potential (as the Doctor) back in "The Christmas Invasion", but he hasn't lived up to it. (Great moments here and there, but as many moments where it was just painful to watch. Rose really didn't help.)

Friday, November 14, 2008

Halfway!

Well, 26K as of this morning. Halfway through the story? I'm not sure. There's still a confusing mess I have to sort through. (And curse that part of my mind which decided that if I was talking about the apocalypse, the Norse version would have to get a part in my story! It's all Kevin Crossley-Holland's fault for his awesome retelling of The Norse Myths.)

For some reason, when I write in the morning, it seems like I get hardly any words done. Maybe I write faster when I'm tired. At night, I look at the clock and realize it's already 11 pm and I still have 1000 words to write! So I do. Takes me about an hour and a bit. Still not very fast, but it's better than I did the rest of the day.

Today's cliche from the big bag o' cliches: the magical train/subway system. Three cheers for Michael Coney's The Celestial Steam Locomotive and the animated version of Tsui Hark's A Chinese Ghost Story. (And tons of others, but those two were the most colorful out of the ones I remember). Mine goes through New Fairyland (until it gets a better name).

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Caught up: 24000!

At least for another 24 hours. Wrote a scene with the Wild Hunt. Another with Lucia and Number 37. It's still not a horror story, but Lucia ended the day today in tears. In the apocalypse, everyone's an elf, in a sense. The cool universe you thought you had is gone. You're doomed as a race and have no future. All the wonderful things you once discovered are fading away and turned to lies. The world that's left will be a miserable place with no magic. You're only a fairy tale told by rabbits, as Schmendrick said once.

Geez, my novel sucks. Also being influenced by choppy Gu Long style (trying to read "Sentimental Swordsman, Ruthless Sword" right now. In Chinese. Sometimes I cheat and look at the translation - heh, funny to see where the translator censored bits.) Gah!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Another day, another cliche (or two)

I'm behind again. Must try to do 3000 words today. The plot is still a mess. Another antagonist from the cliche box: the Badass Bounty Hunter.

Anam. He's a cacoheme addict. (Cacoheme, made from demon blood, is illegal in Babylon. But he's Just That Good, as the cliche goes. Haven't worked out all the details yet. It's possible Mikael will make use of cacoheme later, when the Nameless demands a vision of him.) He has a magic dagger. (oooo! how original! Not. That had better not be Mad Jack's shtick he's stealing! But Mad Jack does not appear in this story, so who cares!) Which he doesn't throw or use for stabbing all that much. The point is, Anam can find (AND teleport to) anyone, once he's captured a bit of their shadow in his dagger. (Known in some games as "scry and die". And yes, you wait until your target is asleep to do this.) (Anam Mark I was a demon summoner. Now we know what his price was for that!)

Cliche 2: the Wild Hunt

Hellequin, I choose you! His duty is to wander around the earth chasing the Damned to Hell. Black dogs and black horses and the black goats of DOOM!

See you in 2500 words or so...

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

20k! I get to watch Sarah Jane!

Dragged myself to 20000 words around 1 am last night before falling asleep. In which we meet Mad Tom/the Pied Piper, find the Lake of Ten Thousand Memories, eat breakfast, and mope about aimlessly. A few more threats set in motion (Guzman, Mikael). Haven't written anything yet today. Rewarded myself for reaching 20k by watching the "Sarah Jane Adventures" ("Mark of the Berserker, pt 2").

I really like the SJA. It's not very original (most of the plots are completely predictable) but it's put together well, and generally more fun than Torchwood (especially as I love Lis Sladen, even if she's now suffering a bit from being a Star.) The stories being 2 episodes long helps a lot with character and plot development. (Things I have problems with in the new Who).

Three things I don't like: 1) Mr. Smith. Gack. If you can't have K-9, at least make your supercomputer more interesting. Cut the dry ice and steal a personality from Blake's 7 or HGTTG or wherever. 2) SECRET! IT'S SECRET! Oh, please. Torchwood is even worse, in this regard. At least they concede that people know about aliens now, it's just something someone ELSE deals with. But there's way too much mindwiping going on. 3) Infected by the new Doctor Who and its "The Doctor is God" mythologizing. That grand entrance (with the music!) when Sarah Jane appeared this episode was PAINFUL.

The companions...I like the new girl, Rani. Even better than Maria (I liked Maria and her family, too.) When I saw the trailer for the Berserker eps, I thought maybe they'd found another Timelord-in-an-amulet and she was really the Rani. Just as well they didn't, it would have been incredibly stupid. But still. Why "Rani"? They're still trying too hard with Clyde (and was this week's plot a tad racist?) and Luke is the new Adric, but that's all right.

So yeah. The Pied Piper probably ended up in my NaNo because of the SJAs.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Magic Eye Fairies!?

Things I discovered today writing my novel (18k. Whee!):

The Fae are hidden in the world like Magic Eye pictures. That's how they can be invisible and visible at the same time. Lin finally caught up with one (or vice versa) and is having a nice friendly chat. The pain, torture, and insanity come later. Just kidding. This novel isn't really horror-ish at all.

I needed to have a fourth POV character. Hello, Guzman, you blackhearted idjit. He's going to stay in Babylon while everyone else is wandering around in the wastelands doing whatever they're doing. Or in Hell, for that matter. But I just invented him today, so I'm not too clear about his plotline yet. Plotline?! Yeah. Should have one. He'll probably get into trouble trying to blackmail Wu the Widow into marrying him.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Now what?

Day 8, got caught up again at 23:25 with 16K words. I keep thinking I'm going to run out of scenes to write without reaching any kind of conclusion. Lin's out of the City. Lucia and Number 37 are headed towards it. Lin unexpectedly found herself #3 on the Citadel's Most Wanted list. (#1 would be the Prince of Rats, #2 would be the Abbess of Wormwood Abbey).

Coming up: demon attacks! memory rain! the Lake of Ten Thousand Memories! Mecha-chimera!

And sleep! (mine.)

Friday, November 7, 2008

Yeah...I'm tired...

Day 7. Didn't make my word count goal for today. That means 800 more I'll have to write tomorrow. NaNo is so relentless. I remember this sinking feeling from previous years. Fall behind, fall more behind, have to go to more and more extreme efforts to catch up. I guess that's the beauty of it. Gotta get the words done. Whining won't help. Write the scene whether you're in the mood or not. Just get through it, then do the next, and the next. It's a bit like MUSHing. You have to do the next pose. Everyone's waiting. Never mind if you're not feeling inspired. Don't break the flow because you can't think of the perfect word.

Gotta work on my writing speed. These 1200 words took me over two hours to write. I did one scene. Had another planned. Guess that's first up tomorrow. Is that Loki that Baphomet is talking to? But it's not Loki that the Prince of Rats is conspiring with.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Day 5! When in doubt, handcuff them and stick a black hood over their head

Hit 10K tonight. Whee! Not much really happened. I'm not sure where the words went. Sergeant Lin decides to make a run for it, but she is captured by the Underground and taken to see the Prince of Rats. (Not Adrian, but an alternate universe Prince of Rats. He may still be Mazarin's nephew, though.) I can't remember why the northeast sector of the city was so bad, but in my NaNo it's cursed, haunted, and the province of monsters, mutants, and zombies. Something to that effect.

Before tomorrow, I have to figure out how the Prince of Rats found out about Lin's 'secret' mission. I suspect Helike leaked the information himself, in order to put pressure on Lin and Baphomet. But does the Prince of Rats know that? All I know is that Lin is a stubborn fool and tomorrow she'll get tossed off Goatsbridge. Also tomorrow: Number 37 to explain the facts of life to Lucia. Let's see how that conversation goes!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Day 4: Exciting fight scenes! Not.

Made my quota at 22:30 today. That's early for me, but I'm still exhausted. At 8k words now. Lucia and Number 37 arrive in the same scene at last. I'll get to Lin tomorrow. Meanwhile, Number 37 fights one of those holy warriors haunting the wastelands. Lucia arrives just before she gets killed. Yay. *waves pompoms*

I think I have tomorrow's scenes in mind. If I can just keep one day ahead for the rest of the month, I may even finish this thing. If it ends under 60k words, anyway.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Day 3 - You want what? Your sanity back? Why?

Dragged myself up to my daily goal (2000 words) 20 minutes before midnight. Gluh. I'm exhausted. And it's only day 3. This is depressing. It always is. Especially seeing all those other people with 9k, 10k, 15k, 20k...yikes!

So I'm at 6k. And finally reached chapter 2. Luz is Lucia again (Luz, Lin, two 3-letter names beginning with "L" is too confusing) but in an odd turn of events she got her memory back. Mostly. So, apparently, she is in denial about this whole Apocalypse thing. She says it's aliens doing it and the miraculous is achieved with special effects. Alien technology. Whatever.

Boy will she be pissed when she finds out it really is God. Then again, maybe it really is aliens. But Number 37 has met Odin. Which is strange, but the post-apocalyptic world is just one big salad bowl after another.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

What, Tomo? You're Japanese?

He seems to have morphed while I wasn't looking at him. In this story, he's apparently Japanese. I looked up the kanji for "Tomo", which turns out to mean "friend". Heh, that's perfect for him.

Although, at the point where my NaNo takes place, everyone is pretty much post-national. Whatever your past, you're here now. People speak a dialect of English (translation convention? Or simply because it was the common language at the time of the apocalypse?)

Tomo's been around. He knows strange things. This is angel-follower Tomo we're talking about, remember? How he survived this long in the Last City, I'm not sure. In love with City Guard Lin? Hmm. Maybe. That would have a certain warped logic to it.

It's heeere...

Day 2 of NaNoWriMo. This is when grim reality sets in for me. I'm only on chapter one, and I already hate my so-called main character. I need to stop thinking of any of them as my "main character". It only leads to boredom and fear of risks.

I can't write more than 100-200 words at a time, at least, words that are in the novel, as opposed to other words which I can produce about as fast as I can type. This year, I think I've been influenced by TV. My story is coming out in short chunks, scenes spread out among different characters that have yet to meet.

So far I have Luz, Mikael, and Lin. Lin turned out to have the most fun so far. Soon I will be sending her out to find Tinkerbell. Well, maybe not Tinkerbell exactly, but the fae that might be out there. Somewhere. Not yet. She's still talking to Tomo, who turns out to be halfway sane in this novel, though still very cheerful.

Next up today will be Number 37, maybe a few zombies, and then Luz again to wrap up the chapter. That's the plan. Plan! Ha ha ha ha ha!