Friday, August 27, 2010

What Next?

Project Utopia is done, and now I'm facing a blank white wall with two words on it:

What next?

I have lots and lots of story ideas, which I will refer to by their working titles.

Iris, which I have done the most research for recently but which still has a really weak main plot (honestly, the supporting plot is way more interesting. Maybe I should switch it so that it's mostly from Iris sibirica's POV, or maybe albicans [though honestly, I should change that to persica]). I might start in on this one next - but it's the most obvious choice, so I'm going to reserve judgment on this.

The fairy-tale based story has maybe the next most planning - I've even got the first few scenes down, but mein Gott the main character annoys me. I cannot get excited about that particular story.

I've also got a massive idea for a story that's a melting pot including several concepts and the setting of my third-grade recess time. Of course, this will require me to make a map of said setting, find some plausible way of incorporating all the various threads, and hash out various background details. And though I'm smiling just thinking about it, the amount of work is quite daunting, and I want to get to writing.

Then there are my million urban fantasy stories. (Just kidding; there are only seven.) I actually have a good idea for one of them, to have it be set in a California where Mexico won the Mexican-American war. But argh, research! This one strikes a chord with me - and not an ugly out-of-tune chord, either.

My worldbuilding-experiment has failed, but I'd like to go back to the drawing board on this one and see what I can salvage. I did not cover the highlights of a hundred-odd years of history to throw it all away.

I'm going to wait on one story I'm thinking about set in the same world of the fairy-tale story, but in the "Italy" - specifically, a powerful city-state based kind-of-sort-of-not-really on Florence. While I have (finally) created some characters that I like (or, rather, scavenged them from a manga I tried to start in fourth grade), I think I need to do lots of more research, so I'll leave it to build up some more before taking it on.

Giant worms? I've got some country names and pronunciation/spelling idiosyncrasies already plotted out, a handful of characters, and hey, look, no plot at all.

For the time being, I'm probably going to write short stories with weak plot/worldbuilding set in Quasiland, a question mark shaped country run by teenage girls, just to give myself some time to figure things out with the iris project.

I'm also making myself wait before reading through Project Utopia. Honestly, I need a break from that - which, coincidentally, is why I'm not jumping straight into book two.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Chapter Twenty-Five

I'm done.

I'm done.

By food, I'm done.

It's very hard right now to keep my excitement inside, but somehow I'm doing it. I wonder if I'm feeling emotional enough to cry. Maybe, maybe not.

Don't expect anything coherent from me right now.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Chapter Twenty-Four

With this, I officially have only one (super-short) chapter to go in my utopia project. I'm thinking that for an actual title, I could just switch those words around and call it "Project Utopia." Not too much of a spoiler, and I like the ring. What would the second and third books be called? I want to incorporate other synonyms for Paradise. Surviving Arcady for book two? [a word] Elysium for book three? No idea.

Anyways, about this past chapter. The first two scenes proceeded more or less on schedule, but at the end of scene 105 I moved and didn't have access to the computer for a while. I think I finished that scene, the second of this chapter's three, in a 2-hour spree wherein I spewed out ~1,800 words. The last scene of the chapter was quite fun to write, because I got to write about my favorite of the crazy genius trinity from the point of view of another character I like.

Through a combination of factors, I did not run into too many emotion problems while writing. In scene 104 I think I handled the feelings of the characters fairly well; in 105, the viewpoint character was removed from the major personality clashes anyways; and in 106, I...all right, I can't write elation that well.

Other issues: I feel as though I overuse the words "now" and "so." And I've well and truly run out of ways to describe the ocean. Thankfully, I haven't had need to write "a smile tore across his/her face" in several chapters. I think I describe eyes and faces too much. Then there are interjections. Since religion has no bearing on the story, I can't have any characters saying, "Oh my God" or "Holy -" (I don't permit any swear words worse than damn or hell, either). My favorite of my made-up curses is "By food!"

More colloquialisms that I like: "lamer than a Light Sector veteran." "The crops don't grow at your command." That's pretty much it, though I have a few lines of a Water folk song.

This next chapter will be the last one. By food!