|Cheers for the advice sun and md. Feel a bit better today and went through big chunks of upcoming stuff in my head and regained a bit of passion for it. Let's see what tonight brings.|
Return of the Revenge of NaNoWriMo '13 • Page 17
Yeah, I've given up, MD. Got too depressed.
Day Twenty Five
@RT, you let your creations loose!
RT, you might be out of NaNoWriMo but you are certainly not out of writing. What you write are some really cool if depressing and bleak, stories. From my point of view you have put out some really good work and I am looking forward to reading on once the NaNo crazyness gives me more time to do so.
For me your unfinished stories are merely in hiatus.
I remain your loyal fan.
On my own front I am struggling to keep up the word count. The sotry is doing well and it is actually a rather enjoyable romp. Today I discovered that I'm shit at action sequences. But I think I will have a lot more practice comming in the near future.
Next chapter is done and despite it being a strange mess I'm rather happy with it.
Edited by sunjumper at 00:41:12 26-11-2013
I always imagine you writing at breakneck speed. Your English is perfect in conversation, but here, it is doing some odd things on a frequent basis.
Ah, Kane. But does that mean that in this version of Earth, we're colonising other planets? That level of tech retroactively alters my view of what we're seen so far and with magic thrown into the mix, it's a bit of a cluttered feel.
Monica confused for lane again at the moment where they are splitting up to man the guns
Something about 'relaxing solidity' does not work for me.
"The envelope was ripped to shreds in many points the fabric flapping furiously in the head wind of the airship. The sunlight, the moving shadows and the dim greyness of the rest of the hull were disorienting and for a moment."
I like the image here - I can see it more clearly than I tend to see left and right descriptions. The 'and for a moment' needs to go, but it's a nice description! I would like to see more description like this, and less of the ones where you go of on metaphor and simile laden tangents, which while often amusing, sacrifice clarity.
Yes, I know, I am a soulless monster =)
If the ship can fly much faster, why can't it outrun the helecopters?
Lots of action in this bit, which is a good change of pace. The description is a bit confusing here and there. Lane is now a murdiddlyurderer! Achievement unlocked!
That all sounds like a lot of ship damage. One wonders where and how it will be repaired without returning to the specialised hanger.
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Did meme drop out or what? Since you're all closer to the end, I may try and dive in and read a few more stories.
Oh feedback for lunch! How pleasant.
Thank you very much!
This is not the world of Rain, if it where evrything would be wildly different. KAne ist just here as a cameo. I noticed that he was in Lightbringer in the background. So I decided to let him do a Hitchcock here too. THis is not the same person as the guy from Rain, he isn't even the guy from Lightbringer although he might but those too are different worlds.
Sorry to have confused you it was just meant as a joke for those who read Rain and this too.
The airship would be able to outrun the helicopters but it would take quite a while. Just being faster does not make you zoom away into the horizion. The airship would remain a giant target for a long time and would get shot down. I did not want to slow down the scene with more talk. But I will have to add a bit to it.
Yes the ship has sustained some considerable damage we will see what comes of it.
*points to Sunjumper*
If you fancy rip roaring action adventure, Sun's your man. More feedback would be very welcome in the thread, we're short on writers and readers this year, it seems.
Meme claims he will finish in his own time, which is a shame, because he's covered in reggae reggae sauce for some reason.
Ahh, interdimensional cameo, that makes more sense =) I must have missed him in Lightbringer.
Explanation for outrunning makes sense.
How much beating do you require to get the next bit?
MetalDog wrote:Only very little beating. The doomsdays clock is allready turning all thermonuclear.
Ahh, interdimensional cameo, that makes more sense =) I must have missed him in Lightbringer.
Explanation for outrunning makes sense.
How much beating do you require to get the next bit?
And you totally commented on Kane in Lightbringer. You are getting old. His cameo there was much smaller though.
Day Twenty Six
Only 500 short of the 53k I needed, which is good, because I'm damn near done.
@MetalDog you nearly done? You done?
Nearly. Next update will probably be the last.
I haven't dropped out, per se, just decided not to follow the NaNo template as it started to feel like I was downgrading my work just for the sake of daily word count. I'm now doing a radical revision of it into a short story/novella, as it's better suited as that.
Nice one. I'm going to pour myself a large glass of vino, sit down and read the whole damn thing.
How does it feel to be at the end? You happy with it at this stage?
Edited by BillCityfingers at 16:48:04 26-11-2013
I have no idea if it's any good or a pile of shit at this point, haha. I'll figure that out when it's stopped twitching and has gone cold. What usually follows THE END when it comes is jubilation that it's over, then a sort of mourning period where your brain doesn't quite know what to do with itself anymore. I shall channel that bit of my brain at the feedback, I have quite the backlog.
There shall be beer, that's for sure.
I look forward to getting to those fabled two words myself one day!!!
I read over the last few days worth of stuff and don't think it was as terrible as I thought, so, bugger it:
Think I'm still somewhere in the murky swirling middle but there's definite movement.
I am closing the gap. Yesterday I was 3000 words behind.
Today I am 400 words behind and today was filled with a fountain of real life shit exploding all over the place. So fuck you life and fuck you procrastination!
While the chapter isn't done yet it is time for another update. More interesting stuff appears, even if I noticed that I just totally loaded another Chekhov's gun which I have no intention of firing. But I think I can milk it for some extra tension later. I mean it is allready lying there all loaded and cocked.
I just had to look up what chekhov's gun was. Interesting... Seems I am applying the reverse principle!!!
Saying that, I don't know if I am as I think everything ties together. God I don't know.
Nice one @sun, nearly there
Thanks, right now things are ging rather well and once I am past that line I hope I will be able to do some more general reading. Your impressive monster novel is still on my to read list!
About Chekhov's gun. It is an interesting thought and a nice guidline. When using it it makes a story a bit tighter. But really when Chekhov 'invented' it he was mostly being a moany git complaining about a prop in the background.
It is good to watch for things that you introduced earleier which you can bring back later. It will actually save you work and make your story more organic, also humans have a tendency to find it pleasing when they see things and how they relate to the world. For some reason we have an aversion to random stuff.
But if you become a slave to that rule you will be writing stories that are incredibly predictable. When you know about the gun you will be looking for it, if you don't it will take you a bit longer but your patern recognition will kick in.
You see the protagonsit fondling his favourite lighter? It getsbookmarked in your brain and you know it will become important later. (Because god forbid that dude never leaves his house with his favourite lighter unless fate will put him in a situation where he has to start a fire...) then many chapters later he needs to start a fire or freeze to death. As he pulls out his favourite lighter (TM) you are already rolling your eyes, because wasn't that a surprise...
It is an interesting device but take it with a grain of salt.
You are almost done?
I need to do some reading then. Today I have some time left so at least you I can feedback right up until the bitter(?) end.
OK. That’s the finger speaking. I was wondering why the boots were talking so strangely all of a sudden. But this comes mostly because of the longish break I had since I last read your story.
It is nice to see how perfectly logical and rational thought leads to the most wonderful fruit of prejudice and superstition. It is easy to be amused by the huntress’s thoughts but this is the privilege of having access to better knowledge.
The scene is good and solid. Not much to say about it. It gets the job done and there isn’t much to be added there. It is good to know who the former inhabitant was; it makes the place a bit more depressing. It also adds soul to the place and meat to your world.
The finger is an interesting character.
Huntress remains being this worlds Terminator.
And I have to agree with the holy finger, fist shaped words are often the most amusing. At least in a story.
For once Dirk makes a good point. Although talking would probably more effective.
Another great scene with Winter and Myrtle together. They both are close and it shows. The conversation between them remains priceless.
Dirk remains a psychopath.
This will not end well. Although I hope, I really hope that it will end without anyone dead.
The observations of the finger are interesting. I like how he in a way is critical of having two humans fighting each other like dogs in a dogfight to do the bidding of their gods while he is still filled with pride of his religion and pretty sure that he will win. Funnily enough this is how wars work, the people who think of it usually sit in the back and let others get murder and go murder in their name. Hmmm…
Nooo. Dirk! Oh wait you were a horrible monster. Serves you right!
Was that the bottle that broke? Owwwwww…
And there is the old MetalDog again pushing her fangs into her children ripping them apart with relish. On the good side I am twisting and turning in my chair screaming at the huntress in my mind not to be such an idiot and listen first and only then decide to maim and kill. Arrrgh.
Also Myrtle will do something; I just am not sure how that won’t make everything worse.
Horse is not ugly you monster!
Owww. Owww. Owwww!
The pain I am feeling just reading that fight makes my eyes tear up. Not in a boo hoo way but in a THE PAIIIN way.
That with the leg is an interesting twist in the tale, makes sense if a bit harsh.
A gods can be such bastards.
Also while cheeks don’t hold anything special apart from some nerves, which huntress probably missed cutting them open like that will bleed like crazy. Myrtle will need some stiches very soon or she will risk losing to much blood.
Winter really didn’t have to kill Huntress…
Well old habits die hard. Dirk would have been pleased.
I would say horrible chapter but only because the things that happened. As always you can make me wince like almost no one else.
And isn’t the finger a dick. (Everything I write about him comes out so wrong…)
Horse remains my secret star of the story. The ‘good wolf’ alone is worth it.
I understand Myrtle’s feelings very well, but I can also see it from Winter’s point of view. Horrible situation really. At least most of us agree that Myrtle needs stitches.
Oh good point about the bandages and talking about the huntress. In the revision you might want to add a few words said by the bandages.
Ahahahahaa take that dick finger!
Wait back at the stable again? Interesting.
Also a bit late this is more something from last chapter… of course! Winter is far too young to have murder that husband of huntress. I should have noticed that. On the other hand I was tipped off by it being fat to convenient while rather improbable at the same time to be true. So I am a cunning idiot it seems…
Chapter 24 continued
Yes I was asking myself why they were returning to the old hut.
The poor boots… they are still with the huntress right?
"I know and I'm eight! You're not thick. You do know." Great line. Says so much with so little words.
This certainly indicates a happy ending… ;_;
Horse kills it again with his last line. :-D
Introducing the new weapon of choice. Right now better than Dirk, but for who long?
Heh I notice that the fire scene is vaguely similar to one in my latest chapter.
While it comes as no surprise that the inn keeper is in cahoots with Winter; remembering the scene were the huntress appeared and tried to make him talk, she still appears like a raving lunatic.
It is also interesting to see that the inn keeper also praises Ynor. It could just be a general curse though.
A child for a child? And revenge again? For some reason I don’t trust that motivation anymore.
The plan with the wells is pretty spiffing though.
I don’t trust Tav and by now think that he is quite the piece of manipulative shit. But then on the other hand wasn’t Winter sent on this mission by the other master? Sil? I am slightly confused; maybe I should have paid better attention. If you want to do something nice for the feeble minded such as me you might want to repeat who gave what orders every once in a while just to keep us old people on track.
Again no item finisher.
Horse is as pragmatic as ever.
Oh exotic gibberish. I just remembered Myrtle is 8 so she will have caught up words from Winter and should have started understanding them.
Snif. At the end I almost had something in my eye. What Myrtle did was very kind and very horrible.
I agree with horse.
The crossbow is quite pragmatic.
Snow also muffles sounds which is awesome if you are an assassin.
That was one tense scene. Making the daughter so charming with so little words was well done and made her death even worse. You monster. (as always)
The dude in the woods was probably Saint Karl?
So with that the dirty work is done and Winter will try to get back home. But Myrtle is actually still being hunted, the gods still want her and he is now a double wanted man, while somewhere in the shadows some assholes are playing their game of murder chess.
Crossbow you are the Spock to Dirk’s Kirk.
Chekov's Gun doesn't just relate to plot. The basic essence of it is that every item you describe and highlight goes into the backpack of the reader. By the time they reach the end of the story, the backpack needs to be empty, every item used in some way, otherwise astute readers will notice. But they aren't just used to further plot and act as McGuffins, they can also be used for character development--a character might buy a map but then his wife throws it out and switches on the GPS instead. It gives us information about both characters and their relationship in subtle ways, despite having no bearing on plot. If a character buys a map but then never uses it and it's never mentioned again, that's just wasteful and a bit pointless.
Likewise describing a character--scant details are good, anything outside the very basics should only be highlighted if they come into play later. If a character has a limp, it should affect him directly in some way, whether it's plot (involved in some kind of chase) or character (makes a concerted effort to avoid walking). If he just has a limp for the sake of having a limp because it's how he was drawn up on a character sheet for an extra trait, just like the unused map it's a bit pointless.
You can get away with it a little more in sci-fi/fantasy stuff, but if there's lots of random stuff that has to be detailed and described to make sense of the world, if it's just background information and scene building then it needs to be a relatively light touch (and definitely more showing than telling) or else it'll come off as exposition dumps. Plus, there's an issue of perspective--if there's technology that's commonplace, people who use it in that time wouldn't need to intricately describe it as an info dump--it simultaneously isolates the reader and pulls them out of the story. It's the equivalent of writing a real-world script then spending several paragraphs explaining how a TV works because the character has one in his house. So unless you're pulling a fish-out-of-water trick with the protagonist, it won't wholly work. Some good ones to read to see this would be 2001, where future technology is just there and not detailed in a massively overbearing way, and then 3001, which features a 1,000 year old astronaut getting used to missing a millenia of developments, and features a lot of info about How Things Work as part of the protagonist's character development.
Of course, first drafts, especially speed-written ones, will be massively littered with unused items due to changing your mind, getting stuff cemented about the world to signpost for yourself, or just plain forgetting them. A big part of the revision process is going back and getting shot of anything that doesn't serve any real purpose.
That is the point where I respectfully disagree. Having every item used that you mentioned will lead to pattern recognition and thus to frustration of the astute reader. It is a good balance between the two that works best. In my humble opinion of course but this comes from someone who notices these things and has now developed a strong aversion against this technique.
Just like a limp sometimes is just a limp. It is a good anchor to add some meat to the story but that really depends where the story is going. It might be a great bit to add some colour and development to the character or it won't become a central part of the story.
It's a guideline. A good one.
But guidlines should never turn into rules. That always turns tedious and kills the spirit of the guideline.
Edited by sunjumper at 15:51:50 27-11-2013
Edited by sunjumper at 16:03:57 27-11-2013
It's pattern recognition when you plan it meticulously from the beginning, but not when you go back and trim out excess. Like I said, first drafts would (and probably should) be littered with them, just as they'll be littered with excess adverbs and adjectives etc. Chekov's Gun is a principle for editing, really, not writing.
It's best to think of it as a removal technique, rather than addition--something that should not be there, rather than something you should consciously place. Go back over and look if anything stands out as particularly highlighted, particularly in description, which is then never used again. Describing a room with furniture and pictures on the walls and so on is fine, but if you then mention in more detail, say, a fireplace that's roaring away, then if nothing happens that particularly involves the fireplace, the description needs to be done away with or toned down to something neutral.
Edited by meme at 16:03:32 27-11-2013
I completely agree that you should go back after the first draft and have a look at what you have written looking for what needs to be cut away (or bolstered for that matter) and what has to be sanded down so that the narrative flows better.
It is good as a guidline and a useful tool which when used well leads to better prose.
I have more problems with the zealots who trim down everything until just the bare skeleton remains. (And I don't see you as one of them Meme)
It is also to a point a matter of taste.
Edited by sunjumper at 16:11:39 27-11-2013
Day Twenty Seven
Turns out I'm not quite done yet, but just damn nearly. Be interested to hear verdicts on whether the epilogue I should throw out tomorrow is necessary or not in the opinions of others.
@Sunjumper, thanks a million for the feedback and the pre-emptive feedback on this update. Keeping me sane and in the game =)
Yeah. A lot of people look at someone like Hemingway and think "everything must be completely minimalist". But his style is all about putting focus where focus is deserved, rather than trimming everything down to nothing. He may have been a proponent of brevity, but his longest sentence in his published works (that's sentence, not paragraph) was two pages in length. Oftentimes less is more, but sometimes, more is also more.
Interesting. Some good food for thought definitely.
I think I have been adhering to this rule by a certain extent already. I have kept my descriptions of characters pretty vague and only introducing things I think I'll need later. Not because I was actually aware of what I was doing mind, but just because I'm trying to write something that I would want to read, and I hate getting bored by the descriptive.
Like Iain banks' culture series. He never explains why or how things work. They just do. Arthur c Clarke didn't either in the city and the stars. It's just a given that this technology exists.
In all the years I've been reading Rankin's rebus series, the only thing he mentions is that rebus has dark hair and that's it. Everything else your mind fills in.
Nice to actually read more about these principles though. Given that my only real writing tutelage was high school.
So what I'm saying is keep the useful info coming ha ha. I'm taking notes.
You're welcome and I am in camp epilogue as you know.
I think people are just so happy when they find useful rules that they then tend to stick with them no matter the consequences to the point where they are doing things that were not intended by the rules at all.
But it is always easier to stick to the rules and point at them to justify one's actions rather than to stick one's neck out and experiment.
Another good reason to keep descriptions more towards the minimum end of the scale is because they can disrupt the flow and are often painful to read. The: "Ha watched into the mirror seeing his handsome face with bright ice-blue eyes comlimneted by his oderly salt and pepper hair. Over 6"5' he had to duch a little bit to be able to see all of his face, now his shoulders pushing past the narrow confines of the mirror so he could not check if his navy blue armany shirt, which contrasted so well with his amber silk tie and the his aquamarine shirt, was sitting as perfectly as it had when he put it on that morning... blah... diblah... blah..." is a horrible crime against humanity and the sooner everyone stops doing that shit the better.
Edited by sunjumper at 16:25:37 27-11-2013
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