Saturday, December 30, 2006

You're going to think I'm crazy.

And you might not be wrong, at that.

I have a message for one of my favorite characters in my off-season project, Karach Jadorre, and for my not-quite-finished NaNo, State of Affairs.

Karach first.

You have dark hair. You have blue eyes. You are of noble descent. You have common sense. You're not short. (Okay, maybe you are. You just don't have a temper about it.) You are an only child. You do not work under a guy who can snap his fingers and create a flame. Your only supernatural gift is a highly passive one. You do not run around wearing a red coat with an alchemic crest of long tradition emblazoned on the back. You still have all your limbs. Your mother isn't dead. (Wait...scratch that. Your mother didn't die when you were ten, how about that?)

In conclusion: You are not Edward Elric. So stop trying to be. You're acting like a poser. Stop it. You're a lot smarter and cooler than he is and you're destined for greater things. No, I'm not going to kill you. I like you too much. That still doesn't give you license to act like an anime character of short stature and choleric temper. Thanks. You're a doll.

Now for my so-called novel.

For a month of my life, I put aside everything for you. I wrote more than eleven thousand words in a day, twice, for you. I am still just now trying to end you before the LuLu offer runs out. And I come to you, on my authorial knees, begging you to let me end you. And what do you say to me?

"Okay, but I want a sequel."

Well, I think I know what I'm writing for NaNo next year, let's say that. I wonder how early I can kill Averi off, because she really has no personality...and I'm sure that Kalla, Kemiira, and Giovanna will sneak themselves in there somewhere. Shoot, Giovanna already exists in this world...

Such is the burden of a writer.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

A Musing

This doesn't have anything to do with writing but everything to do with life.

It came on the TV as a random news break that Saddam Hussein would be executed within thirty days. For some reason, the anchorwoman's inflection as she said it really got to me.

It's like, okay, Saddam Hussein will be dead. Hanged, from what I've heard. (Is that correct?) One man whom I believe can safely be called evil will be dead. Does that mean everyone will just stop fighting? Will the world be a better place? Will Iraqis stop fighting each other and celebrate in the streets?

It might be my pessimistic nature, but I really, really doubt it.

Somehow, though, I have this feeling that someone, somewhere, will go to bed on the night of the execution feeling completely safe. I'm not saying that's necessarily a bad thing, but is it possible that it's a little bit...misguided? I don't know much about the whole situation, admittedly, but everyone has seen, in some capacity, how completely a man like Saddam Hussein can take over a country and imprison a people. The reason - the only reason - that I don't know more is that it's so far out there. Halfway across the world. Oh, it's just the Middle East, they're all poor anyway, so it's not important. What if it were England, or Canada? What if it were somewhere that's closer to us, or more important to us, or more influential? Will I have to live the rest of my life wondering when the next truly evil and highly intelligent person will rise to power, and whether or not it'll affect my life? Will all of us?

The answer, of course, is yes...and somehow, we'll survive it.

Monday, December 25, 2006

Merry Christmas, one and all!

And God bless us, every one. (Watching A Muppet Christmas Carol is a mandatory Christmas activity in this house. The book's good too, of course.)

If anyone out there in cyberspace is actually reading this (fat chance), I invite you to share with me what you got for Christmas if you celebrate it, because I'm a very nosy youngish blogger. I'll try not to get tomatoes on your comments.

For me, the damages to the givers included a total of a hundred thirty dollars in cash and gift cards and a game console. Not a third-generation console, but it's still a very nice system.

(The damages to myself included a two-day drive up to where the relatives are, but I like driving. The scenery's good for inspiration.)

Speaking of inspiration, I've more or less decided that my NaNo this year will follow three characters (all female, but nobody's perfect): Kalla, a blonde early-to-mid-teenager who has absolutely no concept of Serious Business; Kemiira, a twenty-something brunette with, eh, high-up connections and a very gritty job (in the past she's been an assassin, but I'm finding it increasingly distasteful); and Giovanna, a twenty-something noblewoman with severe features and probably some kind of distasteful life situation (though she's not an assassin. Wait, maybe she is...plotbunny, ahoy!). See, blogging does help me, even if it bores you. Sorry about that.

The reason I'm using these three characters, even though two of them have names beginning with "K"? (Nothing against the letter K, but it's not generally good to have two major characters with the same first initial.) That's very simple.

It's because they haunt everything I write.

You think I'm joking? Let me put this in perspective. The only promising beginnings of original novel-length works I've ever written were In the Family, a political thing with themes of family and betrayal which I would still like to get back to one day (it fell to a main character mutiny. Stupid Claudia.); Legends of Azythura, which fell to my own stupidity (when they say don't go into any spinoffs of NaNo with a work-in-progress, they aren't kidding. Luckily, it was before I tried the real thing for the first time, or I could have been mightily screwed on high, yea verily); The Two-River City, which is actually completed - that was my first NaNo - but I'm not yet ready to start submitting it; The Regency at Ambrer Manor, which is still in progress (and I lovers it dearly, yes I does); Naomi High (waaaaay out of my normal genre. It's like a paranormal sci-fi thing); and State of Affairs, my most recent NaNo. Of those, Kemiira appears in LoA as a main character and In the Family as a main character. Kalla appears in The Two-River City as a bit character and has tried to infiltrate two other plots that made it through major planning before being discarded, mainly because of NaNo 2006. Giovanna hasn't gotten quite as serious yet; she's only been a tertiary character in In the Family and State of Affairs so far, but she's been making me draw her an awful lot lately, so I have feeling it's going to get worse.

So, basically, I'm giving these characters a chance to shine this November, because after that I want them to just shut up. I'm undecided about whether or not to kill them, but I'm leaning toward letting them live at the moment, mainly because if I kill them, they'll start haunting my work in a much more literal sense. Arrgh.

In the here and now, I'm trying desperately to bring State of Affairs to a conclusion that doesn't seem utterly contrived. I just killed off my queen (poor Elsionne; then again, being the last member of her family at the age of nineteen and being consistently ill to boot, she had it coming), so it should go a bit faster now. I'd like to avoid writing the wedding that I so carelessly set myself up for, but I doubt it'll work out that way. Ah well. A chance to stretch my description muscle.

On a totally different note:

Currently reading: The Amulet of Samarkand by Jonathan Stroud.
How I feel about it: It's excellent. Go read it. Right now. Seriously.
My soul is being eaten by: The Fruits Basket manga by Natsuki Takaya; the Fullmetal Alchemist manga by Hiromu Arakawa; State of Affairs, my current novel-in-progress.

In the last entry, the character quoted was Edward Elric from the Fullmetal Alchemist anime (he might have said it in the manga, but if he did, I can't remember it; it's also possible that he does but I haven't read it yet, seeing as I'm only on volume 3 of 13. It's also entirely possible that every other television character ever has said that, but Ed's voice and inflection always come to my mind when I see it).

Enough of my pointless babbling for one day, yes? And anyway, the ham is calling. Merry Christmas, God Bless, and don't forget to stock up on tomatoes for the new year!

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Surprise! A blog.

I've gotten sick of being yet another "anonymous" when posting elsewhere in the blogosphere. So I've finally created a blog. To quote one of my favorite television characters, "Whoop-dee-frickin'-do." Brownie points if you can name the character.

I'll probably post things like random progress reports, general blatherings, the occasional question or two...and, if I ever get Snarked, I'll mention it. (No, I'm not in the running for the Happy Hooker Crapstravaganza. That is only for the truly brave or the truly stupid. I try to be neither.)

There will probably be very little of interest here to anyone but myself, but that's really okay. I like to keep myself informed. And documenting my progress will help me in several ways:

1. Later in life (I would say when I'm rich and famous, but that would get tomatoes thrown at me, and I'd be breaking my own stupidity rule), I'll be able to look back at it and say things like, "I remember that day!" and "Oh yeah, that one story..."

2. Not-so-much-later in life, I'll still be able to remember this stuff. Sometimes I could swear I'm the human incarnation of Dory from Finding Nemo.

That's it for now.