Weekly Writing Update

Wow, That Fic is really not cooperating with me lately!  To be fair, I’ve been absolutely exhausted this past week, my new schedule is pretty mentally draining, and any writing I’ve done has been what I call ’emotional dump’ – I’m just getting out any ideas I have, and not really focusing on story craft.  Hopefully I can figure out a good balance to my schedule this week, so that I’m not mentally bone-dead by the time I sit down to write.

So, writing that I have actually done this week.  There’s an Achievement Hunter fic I’ve been dabbling with, which I started a few months ago as a little break from That Fic, and I actually did get quite a bit down for it this week.  For those of you who aren’t familiar with Achievement Hunter, they’re a subset of the Internet company Rooster Teeth (which is famous for shows like Red vs. Blue and RWBY), and they’re essentially a group of gamers that produce Let’s Plays.  The fic I’m writing isn’t a RPF, but is based more on their characters from their GTA V series.

I guess I’ll talk about this fic a little, since it’s what I worked on this week, though I doubt it’ll see the light of day any time soon, if at all.  It is, like many fics about their GTA gameplay, about a heist (for those of you unfamiliar with AH, their GTA V Heist videos are some of their best work, and naturally has a lot of prominence within the fandom), and it’s really just a ‘feel-good’ fic that shows how the crew (somehow) manages to work together.  I’m not going to get any further into it, since it’s still very early in the development stages right now, and a lot of things could (and do, and will) change, but it’s something I tap away at when I’m too tired to do some serious work.

What else?  I’ve been ruminating on a few, very rough ideas, which I won’t go into  until I’m more certain that they’re ideas I can develop and take further than vague imaginings.  There is one that has potential, since it’s not a new idea, but rather something I started thinking about years ago and only just picked up again, so it’s a little more developed than the other odd bits I’ve got floating around.  I will say it’s a Tolkien fic, and a crossover at that, though I won’t say with what quite yet.  It’s got good potential, I think, but we’ll see.

I’m going to sign off now, since I’ve got some other work to get done that’s a bit more urgent than my writing.  I’ll see you all next time, and hopefully with more to talk about!

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Weekly Writing Update

Hello everyone,  welcome to the first post of 2018!

I’ll freely admit here that the creative juices haven’t been flowing especially well this past week – apart from finally managing to finish off a backstory for my DND character, and getting down about 1200 words on a little idea I’ve been playing around with for a few years now, I haven’t gotten any writing done.  But, I should be back to a more regular, structured schedule this week, so I’m hopeful that more progress will be on its way!

Since I’ve been so unproductive on That Fic this week, I thought I’d talk about something new for a change (yes, shocker, talking about something OTHER than That Fic?).  It’s not really new in the sense that I’ve been playing on and off with the idea for the past few years, but since it’s something that I want to pursue once That Fic is done, I thought I’d start talking about it now, give a bit of a sneak preview.

So, I love Tolkien.  Love the movies, love the books, love the fandom.  And since having discovered the online community of fans a few years back, I’ve discovered a passion for Silmarillion fanfiction.  Seriously, love it to pieces.  Silmarillion fan writers are some of the most talented, creative, and inspiring writers I’ve ever encountered.

It shouldn’t be much of a surprise, therefore, that they inspired me to write my own Silmarillion fics.

The big one that I’ve been developing over the past few years is a Modern AU, inspired by the amazing LiveOakWithMoss on ao3, and her famous Dancing With My Punchlines.  I’d recommend it to anyone and everyone, it’s a fantastic epic of drama and humour and angst.  I actually just finished a re-read of it, which is probably what kickstarted my interest in my own idea again.

Technically speaking, this AU is not really part of the Silmarillion proper, though it’s not really a part of Lord of the Rings or The Hobbit either.  There’s a lot of characters that overlap between books, and the time period in which they co-existed in canon is not covered in very much detail by the Professor.  The closest I can say is maybe something like a mixture of the Akallabeth and the first Appendix?  For those of you familiar with the timeline of Middle Earth, it’s from the Second Age.

Not gonna lie, this one is a biggie, and it intimidates me more than any other piece of creative writing I’ve done.  The Second Age is really not my forte, lore wise, I’m more familiar with the First and Third Ages, simply because there’s more information available on them.  But that doesn’t really matter as much in a Modern AU set in Earth, I guess.

This has undergone quite a few major changes.  Having started this in high school, I originally thought about setting the characters as teenagers in high school, before I realized that it wouldn’t work for the story I wanted to tell.  It’s now set in the midst of their university years, and I’ve scaled back a lot of the things I wanted to shoehorn in there, and let things reveal themselves at their own pace.

One thing I will remark on is the truly convoluted timeline I somehow managed to put together for translating the absolutely ridiculous family trees of both Finwë and Thingol into some kind of thing that makes sense within human lifespans.  I actually put that together several years back for another story that I don’t think I’m going to work on now, but I can repurpose that massive timeline for this one.  It looks like a giant rainbow from all the colour coding of dates, and I stunned my friends into silence when I showed it to them, and it’s quite possibly one of the best things I’ve ever done.  Certainly the most prep work I’ve ever put into a story.

(If I ever end up publishing this idea, which probably won’t be for a few years yet, I may post the Rainbow Timeline, just so you can all see how massively complicated it is)

I’m going to stop rambling about it now,  since I don’t want to commit too much to something before I get That Fic done, but hopefully, this isn’t the last you hear about it.  If That Fic is a labour of love, this Tolkien fic is a passion project, and I really hope that I can share it with you all one day.

That’s all from me for now.  Happy New Year, everyone!

Weekly Writing Update

Whew,  it’s been a while since one of these, hasn’t it?  Exams season and then the holidays really took a huge chunk out of my schedule – actually, it’s still taking a huge chunk out of my schedule, got one more exam to study for because of snow day shenanigans.  But this post isn’t about exams and the holidays, so let’s get to it!

Writing has been…erratic, to say the least, because of aforementioned exams and holidays.  Did not get nearly as much writing done as I wanted to on That Fic, which I’ll start focusing again on once I’m back to a more regular schedule.  Actually, most of the writing that I’ve done has been the backstory for a D&D character I’m building for a campaign I’m doing with some friends.  I should probably finish that up and get that sent off to my DM soon, heh heh…

On the other hand, I’m starting a return back to my Tolkien roots, and I’ve got a few ideas for mostly Silmarillion-based fics once That Fic is done.  All of my ideas are long projects though, since I don’t think a oneshot is enough to do them justice, so don’t expect to see any of those in their entirety anytime soon.  And of course, this is all contingent on me finishing That Fic, because I’m not even going to bother working on any other fic while I’ve got that going on.

Since it’s New Year’s Eve (at least, it is, when this is being typed up), I thought I’d put down a few resolutions here, both for this blog and for my writing, for this year!

  1. Finish.  That.  Fic.  In the immortal words of Chancellor Palpatine, Revenge of the Sith, “Dew it”
  2. Try some more original work instead of focusing on fanfiction all the time
  3. Actually update this blog on a regular basis?  Exams and end-of-term excluded, of course

There, I think that should be fairly manageable.  1, at least, should certainly be doable.  With all luck, it shouldn’t take a year to finish revisions.  It only took 8 months to write the first (long) draft, so the second, shorter, more streamlined draft should take less time.  Right?  Right?  No promises about 2 or 3 though, I shall count them as goals which would be great to achieve.

And that about does it for 2017 and this blog!  Been a bit of a bumpy start, but I look forwards to a new year and to sharing more with you all!  See you all in the new year!

❤ AJ

‘The Last Jedi’ Predictions *NO SPOILERS*

So I’m off to see the movie tomorrow, after my last exam, and I just thought I’d share some of my predictions before I go!  Unless I really do have the gift(?) of foresight, there aren’t any spoilers here (if I’m right, Hogwarts needs to hire me as their new Divination teacher, but what are the odds of that?).  All the same, I’ll put this whole thing under a read-more, just in case.

Also, I’m mostly approaching things from a Doylist (writer’s) perspective – I’m willing to go into the Watsonian (within story) perspective, if anyone wants to get into it, but I think the Doylist position is very often neglected or oversimplified, and I could go far more in-depth into my reasoning if I had more time.

Predictions under the cut

Continue reading

Weekly Writing Update

Is this several days late and in the middle of the week?  Yup.  Am I still going to update anyways?  Yup.

So after much contemplation, I’ve decided not to publish That Fic (TM) before The Last Jedi comes out.  Mostly because it premieres in about half an hour where I live, and I’m just on scene 2 in terms of revision, and I’d rather take my time and write something good than put out a sloppy product I rushed to finish.  It is disappointing, not being able to meet my original (personal) deadline, but at the end of the day, I think quality is more important than just publishing something for the sake of publishing something.

And, not to sound too egotistical, but the story so far with revisions is so much better than the massive first draft I have.  It’s much more streamlined, cuts a lot of unnecessary and/or distracting faff, is much more in-character, and is not an info dump like the first draft was.

Revision.  It’s worth the effort.

I’m rather debating about my new goal for publishing.  I’m seeing The Last Jedi on the 19th, but I’m not sure if I’ll be able to finish revisions in time to publish before then, since I still have one more exam to study for, and academics have to come first.  I’m debating splitting the scenes up into a multi-chaptered story instead of one big piece, for which there are pros and cons.  On the plus side, I can still publish before I go see the movie, and I’ll be less tempted to change the story based on the new material from the movie.  It’ll allow me more time to finish the other scenes, and make for a less dense reading situation.

On the down side, I’ve been notoriously bad with updating multi-chaptered stories in the past, and there’s still a risk that later chapters will be influenced by the movie because I haven’t finished my plans for their revision yet.  I’m also not great with keeping length consistency in chapters, and personally, a pet peeve of mine is when stories have drastically different chapter lengths all the time.

Alternatively, I could wait until all my revisions are finished, whenever that may be, and publish it as one whole thing, as per my original intentions.  I won’t be able to guarantee that the movie won’t influence the way I revise, although I can always approach it as an AU, which is still possible, since it covers a timeline that I’m pretty sure extends beyond what The Last Jedi covers, to the end of Episode IX.

So I’m on the fence.  What do you think, fellow WordPress denizens?  Should I turn this into a multi-chapter, and start publishing before the movie comes out?  Or should I take my time, finish all my revisions, and publish as a whole?  Give me your thoughts and opinions!  I’d like to know what you think 🙂

See you all next time!

Weekly Writing Update

The first draft is done!

Clocking in at 48,045 words and 83 pages, it’s the longest thing I’ve ever written.  And it’s the longest thing I’ll have to edit in a space of 10 days with three exams to study for in the meantime.  So yeah, the editing on this one isn’t going to be as comprehensive as I’d like.

But it’s done!  When I started this, I was, funnily enough, also in exam season, and now, eight months later, the first draft is done.  Don’t think about how I have 10 days to edit and rework what took 8 months to do.  In my defence, I didn’t learn about revision techniques until two weeks ago, or I would have scheduled this better.

Anyway, like I said, it’s exam season again, so I’m going to keep this one extra short and sign off here.  I’m just glad that, if nothing else, I got this draft done, and it’s the longest and most comprehensive thing I’ve ever written.  Whew!  That’s not nothing to sneeze at.

See you all next time!

Weekly Writing Update

Hey all, it’s me!  Slightly late, but better late than never?

Of course this post is going to be about That Fic (TM).  I’m on the last scene right now, working through some unexpected hitches, but if all goes well, I’m aiming for it to be done before the end of the week.  And then the fun starts…

I had possibly the most terrifying and most beneficial class I ever had this week, all about revising your work, and it is incredibly daunting but also incredibly worth it, I think.  If I want to get this fic out before Dec. 15, and I do, I won’t be able to implement everything that I learned, but I still have a lot of good advice that I can use, and moving forwards with other stories, I now have the knowledge to start developing more professionally as a writer.

It’s been a bit of a slump this week, creatively.  I’ve written about as much as I usually do in a week, but I wouldn’t exactly call most of it quality.  Probably stress and sleep has something to do with it, but that’s end of term for you.  It may not be a full rewrite, but there will be MUCH revision before publication, I assure you all, and I may, in the future, even do a rewrite, with a more thorough revision process.  That’ll have to wait and see…

That’s gonna be all from me for now, I’m going to aim this week to finally finish the draft of That Fic (TM), and then hopefully the revision can start!  I’ll see you all next time!

Weekly Writing Update

So this has been an up-and-down productive week.

On the productive side, I wrote 15 pages of a script in essentially a day for my writing course.  It’s not great, it needs some major overhauls before I submit it, but I still managed it.  On the not-so productive side, I’m still only in the middle of the big climax scene for the Star Wars fic, which is turning out to be even longer than I anticipated and may possibly need some rewrites.  Just haven’t been feeling it in the stuff I’ve managed to write down this week.

So this week, I’m going to set some goals.  The first couple of days will not be super productive on the fic front because there are other academic responsibilities I need to deal with, but my aim is to have this massive action scene done by the weekend.  Then I’m going to reserve some time during the weekend to actually finish the thing up with the last scene, the scene I actually wrote the whole damn thing for, and next week will be spent editing so that I can get a draft off to a beta, maybe?  There’s no way I’m going to hit my original publish date plan of Dec. 1, but as long as I can get it out before Dec. 15, I’m happy.

That’s going to be the plan for this week and hopefully the next.  I know it’s a short post again this time, but it’s end-of-term season and I’m already pretty lucky that I don’t have any essays to write this time.  But I’ll see you all next week, and hopefully that massive climax scene will actually be done by then!  I hope…

Weekly Writing Update

Hey all!

Sticking to a writing schedule despite everything else going on is proving very beneficial.  I actually accomplished my goals from last week’s post!  Finished the monster action scene, completed the transition scene, and started on the climax scene!  The end is in sight…

This week’s goal is to work on and finish the climax, and maybe start work on the resolution.  Fortunately, I have a clearer picture for these two scenes (especially the resolution) than I’ve had for most of the other scenes in this story, so here’s hoping that they’ll come out a bit more easily than the other ones.  The main struggle that I’m anticipating is, again, the fight scenes.  I’m sure any half-trained choreographer would weep at my clumsy descriptions of a battle.  

I may not get as much done this week as I hope to, because I have an actual academic creative writing thing to work on, and I’ll probably reserve some of my personal writing time for that.  On non-fic related news, I’m experimenting with different forms and genres in creative writing, trying to break out of the traditional story/poem sandbox I’ve been playing around in for years.  I’m thinking of trying out screenwriting, though of course, it’s early stages yet.  But I hope it pans out, screenwriting is something I’d like to try more of, maybe get some experience for the future.

Anyway, that’s all from me for this week, as always, leave a comment below if you’re interested in creative writing, whether you make it or consume it!  I always love it when I can talk with people who are also passionate about the written word.

See you next week!