Stay Alive – A Critical Role Fanfiction

Stay Alive (8056 words) by ComeBackToTheValley
Chapters: 1/1
Fandom: Critical Role (Web Series)
Rating: Not Rated
Warnings: Major Character Death
Relationships: Beauregard & Nott & Mollymauk Tealeaf & Caleb Widogast, pre Mollymauk Tealeaf/Caleb Widogast, lightly implied Mollymauk Tealeaf/Vax’ildan
Characters: Beauregard (Critical Role), Caleb Widogast, Nott (Critical Role), Mollymauk Tealeaf
Additional Tags: Angst with a Happy Ending, Hurt/Comfort, Found Family, tw: discussion of death and non gory description of dead bodies, spoilers for C2 E26, shameless raven cameo

“I think Beau, she called us ‘family’ earlier, and I’ve never really had one, you know, but if this it what it is, it’s not really one without you.”

The Nein aren’t about to let each other go that easily, not if there’s anything they can do about it.


I finished a story!

I know I haven’t updated this blog in about a month, and although there was a lot of writing getting done during that time, this particular story is about the second fastest I’ve ever conceptualized, written, and published a story.  Plans for it started last Friday, right after that episode of Critical Role, I finished it yesterday, and today was just polishing and publishing.  I’m pretty happy with it, and it was a good exercise in emotional catharsis.

No spoilers, for anyone who hasn’t seen the episode yet, although the tags alone are somewhat spoiler-ish.  It was…a wringer, that’s for sure, but I think I’ve made my peace with whatever happens.  This is my little bit of trying to create a positive experience for whatever Critters and readers come my way, and I hope that no matter what happens, we can all continue to show each other the love and respect that is at the heart of this fantastic show.

See you all soon 🙂  Enjoy a bagel, and is it Thursday yet?


Weekly Writing Update

Hi everyone!

Didn’t get quite as much story writing done this week, mostly because I spent most of my time preparing for my first D&D game as a DM!  And it looks like the party enjoyed it and this is going to turn into a proper campaign, so for the next little while, a lot of writing time is gonna be spent developing this one-shot I pulled out of my ass into an entire world.  I already have some ideas which I hope can be further developed as the game goes on, but which can mostly be summed up as a) averting as many world building tropes as possible and b) trying to honour good old Professor Tolkien’s fantasy in some way.

I did get some writing done though, and I worked through most of an awkward scene that was tripping me up in a story, because emotional conversations are just as easy to write as they are to have :)))  Not sure where this particular one is really gonna end, but I can safely say that its main ship barely qualifies as a canoe in the overall fandom so far, and if I have to bail water and paddle this thing myself, I will.

Gonna leave it here with the vague-blogging, and say goodbye for the week!  Hopefully I’ll have a more solid campaign plan next week, and I can talk a little bit more about it.  See you all next time!

Weekly Writing Update

Hey all, I’m back!

To everyone’s surprise, but none more than my own, I got so much writing done since the last update.  So much.  All handwritten stuff which I haven’t had the time to type up yet so I don’t know the word count, but putting aside about an hour every day to write, I averaged about two pages per hour.  It’s not great stuff, it’s all word/idea dumping, but I have a pretty good start to a draft, and the layout is almost done.

Of course, I say a lot of drafts go well, and almost none of them have ever been published, so…

More optimistically, I still got a lot of writing done, far more than I was expecting, which makes me absurdly pleased.  In my usual vague, non-committal nature, I’ll say this much about the story, that it’s a fairly new concept I’m experimenting with, and meta to the absolute max, but more realistic and less cracky.  It’s an unfortunate tendency of my brain that the tiny scientific part of it has a pretty loud voice and always wants the art and imagination to still make sense, so world building is absolute hell in addition to being absolute fun.

I’ll leave it off here for this week on that note, since I have some things to get caught up on, but with any luck (read: less procrastination), I’ll have another just as positive update soon.  See you all next time!

Weekly Writing Update

Heh, it’s been a while, hasn’t it?

Writing’s been on and off lately.  Not necessarily so much as a lack of ideas, just trying to focus on one long enough to get something out.  I’ve been experimenting this past little while with writing strictly chronologically instead of just jumping around and writing down disconnected paragraphs in the hope that they’ll be linked in the future.  It’s worked well in strengthening the quality of the writing, everything’s a lot more cohesive, but there is the ever-present roadblock of getting stuck on a single but crucial linking paragraph/scene/what-have-you.

Because my interests of the moment are eternally jumping around, I’m not going to make any promises about my current projects as yet, at least until I have completed drafts for them.  That may be a while.  Will be.  I am not a particularly productive writer.  This series will also take a two week hiatus starting next week because of prior engagements as opposed to my own forgetfulness and terrible procrastination.  I will endeavour to get as much writing done as I can though, so that when the hiatus is over, I will have something to actually talk about.

See you all next time!

Weekly Writing Update

Well, I did say this month was going to be hectic…

A quick post just to keep this series alive, and to note that to my utmost surprise, I have gotten some writing done since the last update.  It was completely unplanned, a spur-of-the-moment thing, and it’s surprising for many reasons, not least of which is that it’s looking to be pretty short (by my standards) and that the draft is already over halfway done and it’s been less than a week since I started it.  It’s a fanfic for Critical Role’s new D&D campaign, and despite the fact that I don’t usually like writing things for ongoing plots, it’s been a surprisingly enjoyable process.  Heaven only knows if it’ll ever get published, but a friend of mine has already said she’s ok with reading it over, which gives me incentive to finish it at least!

I’ve also been dabbling in the world of D&D with character creation.  I haven’t got any dice yet to roll any stats, and I don’t have any campaign to play the characters I’m building right now, but maybe one day…  Building characters is really fun though, and D&D is great for all those details you never really considered.  I’m using 5th edition right now, still new to everything, but maybe if I ever actually start playing these characters and getting more of a feel for the game, I’ll start home brewing more elements?  This is fun, I wish I’d gotten into it sooner.

Anyway, that’s all from me for this week, I’m gonna sign off now and see you in about two weeks?  Hopefully I can keep the writing momentum going between now and then.  See ya!

Weekly Writing Update

Only missed one week this time, that’s an improvement, right?  It’s crunch time right now, so I count updating at all as an achievement.

Really short update this time, since as I’ve said, it’s crunch time right now.  For a change, I’ve gotten some work done on that Star Wars fic again!  Granted, it wasn’t very much, but at least I’m back at it.  Also got some more plot planning done on that massive Modern AU, up to forty chapters laid out so far!  Other than that, a bit of scribbling down of ideas here and there, nothing of real significance at the moment.

It’ll probably be a while before I can update again, and at more detail (told ya this was going to be a short one), there’s a whole bunch of real-life-itis hitting me right now.  I’m not even going to bother setting any goals for creative writing for the interim, but I can promise that I’ll be thinking about it, as I always do.  See ya next time!

Weekly Writing Update

Hello all!

Despite not having done much writing this week, it has been productive on the writing front because I’ve been doing a lot of story planning, laying everything all out so I know what direction I want to take things when I finally start writing.  I’m twenty five chapters into the planning of The Great Modern AU, and it’s going mostly alright.  The biggest difficulty here is not overloading the story with drama, while keeping the pace going and giving everyone enough “screen time” and development.

Another struggle I find myself with is the problem of original characters.  As I’m sure anyone familiar with fanfiction knows, it’s hard to get an OC right.  For me, personally, I find it difficult to read OC-centric fics because often, they don’t feel like they fit into the story or with the other characters.  I’m not going to have an overload of OCs in this story (though with how little information there is on some of these characters, they might as well be!), but there are at least a couple that are necessary (you really couldn’t have at least given some of those female characters names, Professor?)

What keeps me going through these difficulties is the dream of the story I want to tell.  Every time I get stuck on a plot point or lost in the drama, I think of the story I’ve seen in my mind, and how much I want to share it with the world, and that gets me going again.  As I’ve mentioned in my last post, there aren’t a lot of stories out there about the particular couple that this story centres around, and I want to change that, I want to contribute the vision building in my mind and show that there’s more to be told here, more to be found than just smut.

Anyways, I’m going to keep at it, try and do it “properly” (insofar as there is such a thing as writing “properly”), and maybe one day you’ll all get a chance to see the dream that makes me smile (or, alternatively, bang my head against my desk).  See you all next time!

Weekly Writing Update

Hey all, sorry for the absence this past month!  Things got really busy and I barely had time to sleep, much less update this blog.  But I’m back now, with actual writing stuff to talk about!

I’m trying a “new” approach to writing, or rather, revamping an old device I’ve made use of a couple times.  If you dive back into the archives of this series, you’ll find mention of a certain enormous Modern AU project for Tolkien.  That’s been an idea that I’ve toyed around with for a number of years now, and now that I’m in a position where I have the experience to write about some of the things in this story, I’m getting to the actual business of writing it down.  And instead of just blurting it all out, this time I’m actually planning it.

Previously, I’ve never made much serious use of story planning.  I’ve come up with graphs and charts of character data and timeline calculation, and I’ve scribbled out some stuff about points of conflict, but I’ve only once before laid out chapter by chapter what’s going to happen.  It’s a new approach for me, but I think it will be necessary with the behemoth that this project looks like it’s going to be.

I’ve already talked a bit about what the story is, but I thought I’d go a little more into it now, in the hopes that by getting some draft ideas out, I can receive feedback and flesh them out more.  I’ll keep it free of names, for anyone not familiar with Tolkien’s works, and put it under the cut because this might get long.

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Weekly Writing Update

Hello again!

It’s been an all-Tolkien kinda week for me, when I haven’t been out of my head with stress.  Actual writing hasn’t been super productive, but I did translate elven lifespans into a human timeline, which is every inch as troublesome as it was three years ago, but I think I’ve managed to come up with something that works for the story I have in mind, and even keep canonical birth order mostly a thing!

I’m not gonna lie, it may be a while before I get anything really productive done.  These next couple of months are going to be mentally exhausting, and I’m finding that by the time I usually set aside every day for writing, I’m too drained to come up with much, much less anything good.  That’s not to say I won’t keep at it, but it’ll be slow going for now until I get a chance to breathe and let the creative juices flow.

I’ll still keep this weekly series going, because I know it’ll die off if I start taking breaks, but there probably won’t be any long posts about what I’ve gotten done that week for a while.  I still intend to get That Fic done, and to start progress on the great Tolkien Modern AU as well as some other, more original projects, but it’s going to be a while in coming.

I’ll leave off there for now, and see you all next time.  Maybe I can rustle up some bits of old projects to show and discuss for the next post?  We’ll see.  Until next week!

Weekly Writing Update

Hello again, all!

I think I’m finally starting to hit my stride with writing again, although the focus has been somewhat erratic.  I have not progressed much further with That Fic, but I have gotten down quite a lot for some of the others that I’ve mentioned in the past few posts – namely that Achievement Hunter fic, and the great beast of a modern Tolkien AU.

Without much to actually talk about in regards to my current projects, I thought I’d switch gears this week to actually talk about storytelling, or at least, my personal thoughts and experiences with it.  Not the writing process, because there are a thousand and one stories out there about writer’s block and sitting in front of a blank page for hours without writing a single word, but the actual craft of creating a story.

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