Tag Archives: Requiem in Blue

Another novel-in-progress. Cyberpunk, dark, and dystopic. Fear it.

Getting into Claire’s head

Claire is the secondary protagonist in Broken.  She is linked to Amara, the primary protagonist, through a dark covenant.  Neither one of them knows it yet.

Claire was a bit of an enigma — still is, even 5k into the draft.  I didn’t know anything about her before starting, except that she was stalking Amara and was a fan of Amara’s music.  As I began to write her POV, I learned alot more.  For instance, she kind of has a crush on Amara.  She may be lesbian or bi.  Not sure yet.  Also, she’s suicidally depressed.  Amara and her music help her to stay alive.  The big surprise?  She’s a writer!  I didn’t expect that one at all.

I primarily let my characters evolve organically.  The less I know, the better.  And I never really know anything until they hit the page, in that moment.  Nothing’s really planned.  And the sky’s the limit.

For instance, one of my most mysterious characters ever is Bossman from Requiem in Blue.  I added him on the fly, and he would not “talk” to me as my other characters did.  Instead, he showed me what he was doing.  And, he was very evil and sadistic, and he kind of scared me.  But as far as character development goes, he didn’t even exist until I wrote him in and bam! I got a glimpse inside his world.  Also, Anthonia from the same book was interesting as well.  She was to be a sort of double agent, and it came out, through writing her scenes, that she was considered a “warrior.”  I’m still not clear on that, but it intrigued the hell out of me.  Then, while writing on vacation (I remember this distinctly), a link between her and Meredith, the main character, developed.  Totally unplanned but very cool.

So, I’m working on getting inside Claire’s head.  She’s talking to me, for sure.  She’s intriguing because she seems to be a loner and kind of strange.  But the good kind of strange.  I can’t wait to see what’s next.

I also did something I have never done before ever.  Usually, I write in either first person or third.  Most of the time, I’ll alternate it for the hero and heroine — heroine gets first, hero gets third.  Well, with Broken, Amara gets third and Claire gets first.  Why’d I flip it?  Well, I need distance for Amara — much of her character is distant, and I need the actual distance b/c a small part of it is based on real life.  Very tiny.  But I needed to be in third so Amara doesn’t become me.  I can’t have her do that, so that’s why I wanted third.

With Claire, it just happened.  When she started talking to me, it seemed natural to write it in first.  A bit weird, having them reversed, but so far it’s working.

Broken is quite unusual for me — the POV thing, the premise, the whole experience.  Trying to expand my horizons.  I don’t know how it will all shake out, but so far it’s really going well.

Writing theme songs

All of my projects have at least one theme song attached to them, be it the whole book or an aspect of it.  I thought it might be interesting to list what they are and why.

Pirouette – all drafts (3rd draft in progress now):
 “Space Dye Vest” by Dream Theater.  I used this as Alisia and Lucien’s main “fighting” song.  It’s sad and torturous, and it brings up all kinds of heart-wrenching images in my head.  It just seemed perfect.

“Walk in the Shadows” by Queensryche – Raelan and Alisia’s theme.  In the last third of the book, [something spoilery happens] and for a time, Alisia and Raelan (who’s the villain) are….aligned.  This song, which talks about walking on the dark side of life, giving ino the darkness, fits the feeling of those scenes perfectly.

“The Killing Words” by Queensryche – Alisia and Lucien’s theme.  Just screams tragic, love, betrayal, heartbreaking stuff.  Sniff.

Flamebound (currently in revision):
“Take Hold of the Flame” by Queensryche.  The entire story is based on the song — or rather, my interpretation of it.  So many things tie to the world and story.

Survivor (recently finished first draft):
Operation: Mindcrime by Queensryche.  Yes, the entire album.  The book pretty much wrote itself to this awesome, magnificent album.  Since alot of the themes ran parallel to my story, it was almost eerie how the entire thing seemed like a metaphor for Survivor.  Some of it, like the brainwashing and mind control, were literal.

“Eyes of a Stranger” by Queensryche (on Operation:Mindcrime) – Amber’s theme.  Amber is the main character, and as she goes through some painful, traumatic stuff, she’s kind of transformed….and thus truly has the “eyes of a stranger.”

Requiem in Blue (2007 project)
“The Hands” by Queensryche – Meredith’s theme.  Meredith, the main character, is saved by someone.  “The Hands” makes me think of that, and salvation in general.

“Suite Sister Mary” by Queensryche – Some of the story was inspired by this song.  Especially one part about two people joining together to “make it through the night.”

Broken (currently in progress):
“Broken” by Lifehouse.  Also the why of the title, at least for now.  The song talks about being broken, and Amara, the main character, and the antagonist are both broken in a sense.

“Unbreakable” by Fireflight.  New band that I just discovered.  Totally Amara’s theme.  I realize that the songs seem contradictory, but it works, I swear!

Eowyn (perc’ing project for future):
“Ordinary World” by Duran Duran.  Theme of the book.  Because we’re dealing with quantum mechanics and alternate universes, and a “home” universe, it seems appropriate.

MindBound (future project):
“Lightning Field” by the Sneaker Pimps.  I saw a video of it and HAD to have the song, even though I’m not into that type of music.  Went on a wild goose chase and finally just today got ahold of it.  It’s THAT close to what this story is to me.  It (the story) has to do with an empath and pain and brainwashing, and the song is so perfect.  First words are “Strike me down…”  Can we say perfect?  Literal or figurative, it works. 

Soulfire (The Nano That Never Was):
“Lady Strange by Def Leppard.  Liana’s theme.  She’s the main character, and she isn’t exactly human and has non-human goals and wishes and such.  She’s a bit offbeat in her own way.

“Baba O’Riley” by The Who.  Book’s theme.  Completely encapsulates the dystopic future-Earth setting and the insidious reach of the New Regime.

Hereafter (Nano ’08):
“Women” by Def Leppard.  For no other reason than it gave me some compelling images inside my head, and somehow spawned plotty things.  This one I don’t really understand, but don’t question it, either.

At the moment, that’s all I can think of.  Will add more if I remember anything.

Plotbunnies, Inc.

My writing partner and I were brainstorming a new book idea, and I thought I would talk about my brainstorming process in the hopes that maybe someone out there would find it useful in some manner.

There are a few things I regularly use for plot ideas:

1) Conversations.  Any and all.  Often, it will be a nondescript, non-writerly type of convo, but something said will spark an idea.  For instance, recently a friend of the beloved’s parents was talking about live TB germs still hanging around someplace.  Scary huh?  So then I wondered what would happen if someone came into contact with them, and then others came in contact with him, and so on.   It’s still fermenting, but the wick has been lit.  😀 

2) News.  Not usually the local news, either, although occasionally I’ll find something intriguing.  Nope, I’m talking about world news and the Peculiar Postings on MSN.  A plot element from What Lies Beneath came from a story about a boy who’d drowned.  Sometimes health or science news also gets the gears going, too.

3) Science.  On Thursday I discovered Discover Magazine.  Found some very interesting information on the sleep cycle (which is always interesting, after having almost been diagnosed with narcolepsy), minimally-conscious states (not a vegatative and not a coma –a cross between the two), and some intriguing news on memories (another passion of mine — memory in some way or another always creeps into my books).  Just from persuing the headlines and reading articles that looked interesting.  I should have been a scientist, I swear.

4) Dreams.  I have very vivid, very unusual dreams that I can usually remember in graphic detail.  It could be that I’ve trained myself to ponder things unconsciously, or maybe it’s my meds (a certain medication is known for inducing vivid dreams and nightmares).  I have at least 3 plotbunnies connected to dreams, and other plot elements that came from a dream.  If you find you can’t remember your dreams, tell yourself as you’re drifting off that you will remember.  Be prepared to jot down anything upon wakening.  Dreams tend to dissolve the more awake you become.  I try to latch on to something and more or less “memorize” it before it vanishes.  Those few minutes upon waking are the most critical.

Another thing I do is ponder any issues I’m having with a novel as I’m drifting off, which insures that I will dream about it.  Recently, a tiny part of a dream spawned the sequel idea for Pirouette.

5) Juxaposing two or more very different ideas.  I purposely look for strange or contradictory ideas to combine for novels.  I take what I mine from other sources and work it out in my mind, asking myself “what if?” questions.  The entire concept of Requiem in Blue was built this way: combining cyborgs, underwater, and mind control.  Same with What Lies Beneath — empathy, insanity, and dolphins.

6) Other books.  Books inspire me.  I don’t ever copy; rather, I twist and bend the core idea (sometimes juxaposing stuff as above) to come up with my own spin on it.  This I disocvered from Holly Lisle’s workshop: How to Steal Ideas Ethically (or some such.  Can’t remember the exact title).  Requiem in Blue was originally one of these.  I read Starfish by Peter Watts and fell in love.  What I liked the best was the underwater millieu and how the people were modified to live in deep sea.  I took that, and ran with it.  If you hadn’t known this ahead of time, you probably wouldn’t be able to tell: the plot, combined with the mind control, is completely and entirely different, as are the circumstances as to why these people are living deep in the sea.  The only resemblance to Starfish now is the core idea that sparked it. 

Same thing with Holly Lisle’s Talyn.  If you haven’t read it, go read it NOW.  It is awesome, thrilling, terrifying, and beautiful all at once.  Well, the idea of enemies joining together (and a few other things too — don’t want to spoil it) intrigued me.   What Lies Beneath has elements similar to that, in the romance end of it.  But the similarity ends right there.

7) Song lyrics.  Now, I have what I call “movie images” appear in my head as I’m listening to music, pretty much without any conscious control.  I’ve always done this, even as a kid, and it helps me brainstorm and get new ideas.  But some lyrics will actually inspire plots as well as the imagery.  Queensryche’s “Suite Sister Mary” became the template upon which I plotted (ok, semi-plotted) Requiem in Blue.  “Silent Lucidity,” also by Queensryche,  inspired a VR plotbunny very recently.  A song by the band Creed inspired an alternate reality romance plotbunny I’ve had for gosh, years.  Queensyche’s “The Hands” inspired parts of Requiem in Blue (it’s also the protagonist’s theme song).  It’s really amazing what cool things happen with music.

I also use music to help me write.  Oftentimes if I’m stuck, I’ll just close my eyes and let it do its work.  Usually, it’s enough to get me moving again, and that’s what counts.

8) Real-life events.  There are a few novels that started out purely as semi-autobiographical, as a way to make sense of something that had happened to me.  Usually, they grow beyond that, and take another form, but that’s how some of them start.  One such novel, “Transparent Eyes,” started out as a way to get back at someone (fictionally)  who’d hurt me.  TE grew beyond that, and is now Footsteps of Ghosts.  The original elements are completely gone, and it’s a story in its own right.

Take caution when plucking things from your own life — there’s always the chance of lawsuits.  Granted, the law can be a bit ambigious, but it’s always good to hide any real-life stuff behind a good fictional situation. 

Another old plotbunny is a multi-generational family story that I’ve been meaning to write, to help cope with some of my own personal issues.  It’ll be fantasy or sci-fi, most likely.

And, Dagmar, another plotbunny, came from my grandparents’ love story.  War romance, Irish heritage.  The rest is completely different, but that was the inspiration.

Once I get the kernel of the idea, I let it perculate.  I have a good memory so that’s not hard, even with multiple ideas (although I have been writing them down as of late).  I always ask myself “what if?” questions, and try to tighten the screws on the poor characters.  Torture, that’s the name of the game.  I’m evil, LOL.

Sometimes I use Tarot cards, using them to answer those “what if?” questions.  I’ve come up with some awesome ideas that way.

So now you know my process.  It works very well for me.  And it’s basically just being aware of things, and always looking at different perspectives.  The belief that anything can result in a story idea helps.  😉  And perhaps that’s why I have so many…..because I see them everywhere.  I don’t think I will ever run out of ideas.

Hopefully this helped you in some way!

Update on things.

Pirouette Rewrite of Doom: Heh.  I’ve just hit 46k, and I just began a rewrite of the scene I wrote yesterday to clear up a plot hole.  I’m still not happy with it, but for now, it serves.  I’m just over 1/3rd done, and I’ve projected my completion date to early 2008.  Oh, and it might grow in size and scope.  Whilst re-reading some of the first draft, I noticed that in my outline for the Rewrite, I’d forgotten about the antagonist’s people and their abilities.  So, yesterday’s scene was to introduce one of them, Sarah, as a viewpoint character.  She’s a dark witch and Alisia’s competitor in the dance troupe.  They will be pitted against each other before the book ends.

Also, someone dies.  Someone I didn’t anticipate. 

Survivor: The Rewrite has officially begun!  Say what?  Yeah.  Well, it’s more like I’ve been keeping the rewritten stuff together under the title Survivor Rewrite.  I’m not really rewriting anything now.  I still need to finish that damn first draft!  I stumbled across some very interesting (and compelling) info on mind control that I might use towards the end of the book.  It will give me what I need to happen and will be realistic, as this comes from true stuff.  Stay tuned.

Requiem in Blue: On hiatis officially, but upon re-reading some old material, I discovered that I really would like to know what happens next….and figure out how to eliminate a few plot holes.  Oh, and a new element presented itself to me yesterday.

Plot bunnies: List is still growing.  I now have a murder mystery/thriller bunny about a secret society that maims corpses as part of their ritual and another war romance.  I’m telling you, it’s unreal.  It kills me that I can’t write faster.  Oh well.  At least I will never hunger for ideas, eh?

So that’s what’s shaking with da Weaver. 

Not dead, just busy.

Very.  My beloved fiance and I went camping the 3rd week in June, and the prior two weeks were taken up by Planning and More Planning and then Shopping.  It was a lovely, kick-ass time, got lots of pics, caught 3 fish, actually ate some fresh-cooked perch, and wrote ALOT.  Massive…12,000.  Yeah.  Can hardly believe it myself.  If only I could do that daily…

Yeppers, I am officially engaged.  The beloved proposed on Wed, June 27th which was a complete and utter surprise.  But not a shock.  He’d planned on doing it in December but couldn’t wait.  Such a wonderful guy I’m marrying!  We’ve set a tentative date of June 27, 2009, which will give us enough time to do what we need to do, get me moved in, and not have to rush planning the wedding. 

On writing.  Been doing mostly character prework for the Pirouette Rewrite of Doom.  I’m nearly done with Alisia, and will start on Lucien tonight or tomorrow.  I used Holly Lisle’s Create a Character Clinic which I highly recommend.  Even if you’re good a character creation, it still can give you some kick-ass insights, stuff you haven’t thought of before.  Case in point: Alisia’s dance partner, Adam.  From the get-go, they’ve had chemistry, and I (literally) danced around it, not letting it go anywhere because of Lucien (stoopid reasoning, I know).  I read the first few scenes today and it dawned on me: Adam should be a factor in this complicated equation of a story.  And…using Holly’s cool techniques, I also “discovered” a human lover that apparently my dear Alisia has been keeping under wraps.  Oh my.  It will be very interesting to see how this works on the page.

Been figuring and re-figuring the magic.  Suffice to say that it’s tighter, more logical, and very unique.  I have since added things and subtracted others.  Added more today in fact.

I’m changing Alisia’s …place…in the world again.  She’ll be unique, which was the point, but it will be due to the will of the world.  The Otherworld.  The secret slayer-society that shows up in Dance of the Obsidian has also changed…although they still slay.  And now there’s a sort of Council that polices the otherworldly peoples.  Alisia and her arch-nemesis have something in common, having to do with this Council, and that makes them uneasy allies.

 All from a book on character creation.  I’m telling you, it works. 

Oh! And I also found out a bunch of things that Alisia neglected to tell me the first time.  *wags finger*  Bad girl.  Bad, bad girl.  She’ll be a tortured soul, but she will rise above it to become something of a legend.  Muuahhh.

On other projectos: Requiem in Blue is swimming right along, with some kick-ass revelations while at camp.  I wrote 7.5k of that alone while on vacay.

Survivor is going slightly slower, but I can’t say I’m surprised.  It’s been tough, but that’s the subject matter– it’s not exactly warm-and-fuzzy material.  And this particular scene I am banging my head over is a doozie — it’s just the crux of the ending, is all.  No biggie, right?


So that’s in the works.

Indexing: got about half of my practice book indexed.  It’s been really interesting, and I can’t wait to see if I totally botched it or if I might be on to something.  That’s the only problem with correspondence courses — no real feedback or anything.  Just sorta flying blind.  But I have Plans.  Always.  *she says with shifty eyes*

So, I think that’s it.  I’ll try to get back more regularly.  Just fell into a black hole.  I’m out, alive, and I’m damned happy.

Life is good.

Requiem is *gasp* plotted. And, more ideas.

Ok, maybe not plotted exactly, but I had a cool new idea for the beginning that made more sense to me.  I started out with the characters in their natural environment.  Which is fine.  But at that time I had really no real direction.  I just started writing, and kept writing, up until now.

Today I did a little bit of a rethink on it.  Who were the real villains?  What’s the true nature of their situation?  Could they be totally mind-controlled to the point where they have no memory whatsoever of their experiences as Sentinels?  Who are they outside of the Globe?

And so on.

So, now I have a clearer direction, and some answers to those questions.  I wrote out as much as I could, in broad strokes — I’m saving the details for my muse.  It’s pretty much the same as before, with a few slight changes.  Nothing that requires any real rewriting.  I will, however, attempt to write that crucial first scene tonight.

It feels right, you know?  Like perhaps my muse has been keeping this from me, but has been throwing me hints all along.  And I finally got it, but it feels as if I knew this all along.  Pretty cool, this muse stuff.

So that’s the lowdown on Requiem.  Very excited.

I also want to drop off a few miscellaneous thoughts on What Lies Beneath, one of my more active plot bunnies.    While perusing the MSN Peculiar Postings today (I regularly mine them for story ideas), I found one article about someone who’d drowned trying to retrieve something from the river –I can’t really remember the deets.  But, naturally, this took my mind in some dangerously twisted directions.  Drowning.  Pominently figured.  Maybe even as the main conflict.  Drowning someone, or someones.  Yeah, I like that.

Second — a man who’d dug his own “underground bunker” in which he’s been living in for 6 years.  So, we have an underground living area, a small one, and we’ll just say for excitement sake, underwater.  Hmmmm.  I can hear the wheels turning….

Here’s where I am applying what I read in Holly Lisle’s Create a Plot Clinic.  There’s a section in there about taking stuff that strikes you — photographs, newspaper articles, etc, and using them in your plots.  I was going to do this with my Cosmo magazines, but I was derailed by the peculiar postings.  I’ve found alot of cool stuff in there.  Anyhoo, these two ideas are nebulous, but I’ll put the muse to work on them.  Maybe they will turn out to be really cool.

Requiem snippet.

Requiem in Blue has been languishing on my hard drive for at least a month.  Well, last night I hit 25k — which is quite the accomplishment, as it’s been slow going for awhile (mainly because of the prework for the Rewrite of Doom, but I digress).  I just wasn’t motivated, but last night, I had the urge to write new words and at first I was going to work on a different scene.  But as I was reading over the last two scenes, I decided that I’d left the question about Anthonia’s memories unanswered for too damn long, especially to myself, but for the kind readers who have been cheering me on all along.  So, while I wrote it, it came out far different than I could have ever expected.  Oddly enough, we still don’t know much about her memories, but that’s okay.  Something majorly fucked up happened, and now Anthonia is…well….damaged.  She will have a long road ahead of her.

Anthonia was originally met to be a secondary character, a possible love interest for the male lead, Damian, and also a bit of a double agent, as she is both dryborn and seaborn, Sentinel and Operator.  She’s firmly entrenched in both worlds, and that rises some interesting possibilities.  But, last night, I realized that her connection to the Sentinels goes way deeper than a set of webbed appendages and a back fin.  It’s life-altering, this thing that’s been discovered, and it sends shivers down my spine when I think of it.

I also learned more about the Operator known only as Jones — I have a distinct plan for him, but this new element makes things interesting.  It will give him better motivations, and will be a source of rich conflict.  I’m just an awe of how my mind works sometimes.

So, this novel/novella thing is getting more and more interesting by the minute.  I want to write more today if I can.  Oddly enough, I resisted the urge to Sit Down and Plot this thing.  This book just doesn’t respond well with constraints.  It’s an odd thing b/c after I discovered the benefits of plotting, I haven’t written a non-plotted/organic novel since.  The mere thought would put me into panic.  I do plot ahead a few scenes, or jot down notes for possible future directions, but I am holding to my No Plotting Rule.  I believe it would ruin the magic of this thing.  It seems to exist in the fragile place between worlds — the world of my writing and the Real World.  It’s an anomaly, but I really love it.  And I’m enjoying the ride.

So without further adieu, I give you a snippet.  This is after the….accident.  Remember this is pure first draft and is thus not perfect…yet.  😉 

Something fluttered to the surface of her awareness, something small, and light, like a butterfly wing.  She remembered butterflies from her short childhood on dryland.  She’d loved the colors, and the wings, how they could get airborne, glide on the breeze for miles…. for an eternity.

She tried to reach out and touch it, but something was wrong with her arm, and her eyes.  Red tinged everything, and her eyes blurred constantly.  She could hardly keep her eyelids open.  They felt like two weights were attached to them.

The smell of blood permeated her awareness, and it didn’t occur to her that the smell was coming from her.  She wanted to get away from it, that faintly metallic smell that rolled her stomach….


Voices?  Coming from…upwards…  No, it was one voice, one that sounded like…like…she didn’t know. It gnawed at her, but every time she got close to figuring it out, it would slip away.  Her thoughts were so sluggish, so heavy, that it became difficult to hold just one….

“Anthonia?  Blink if you can hear me.”

What were those sounds?  She should know what they were, surely, but she didn’t.  She couldn’t understand what they meant.The first sound sounded chillingly familiar.  So familiar.  She tried reaching out with her other arm, and it felt like it was filled with rocks.  Big, heavy rocks.  And her head hurt.

Something blipped across her awareness.  A picture.  A little person, she thought.  A perfect little person…covered in blood.


The sound brushed across her mind, light as a breeze, whispered like a prayer given to the Gods.

She blinked.


Why did that sound tie her belly into knots?

“Anthonia, if you can hear me, move your fingers.”

Fingers?  What was that? She moved her head, just a twitch of motion, and opened her eyes wide.  A blurry form hovered over her.  Something came towards her, and she instinctively moved out of the way.

“It’s okay, I won’t hurt you.”

Her eyes narrowed.  She wished she knew what those sounds meant.The thing hovered over her again, and she didn’t move, but prepared herself to in case she needed to.  Something told her that she needed to do this.  The thing touched her skin, and came away with blood. 

 “You’ve been hurt.  I’m going to take you to Medical—“

Her mouth moved, formed itself into odd shapes.  “Mere—“ the vibrations coming from her throat scared her, and she stopped.  Tried again.  “Mere—Meredith?”


Poor Anthonia.  😦 

Let’s hear it for cooperative muses! Or, the power of cards.

*cheerleader pom-poms waving around*

 My muse and I have been at a stalemate for the past few days.  She’s been giving me some awesome ideas, but whenever I tried to get more detail, she’d stonewall me.  Yesterday she showed me an awesome, kick-ass of a prologue and yet she refused to tell me the specifics on the magic –and I needed that to write the scene.  *Dr. Evil voice* “Throw me a bone, will ya?  I’m the boss.  Need the info.” (I love that line).

Yeah.  So today, after much musing (heh) over this particular bump in the road, I pulled up Holly Lisle’s Create a Plot Clinic.  I needed more scenes — I had a few in mind already — so I figured now would be a great time to try for both.  I used a tool in there that involves using Tarot cards (or any type of picture-oriented cards, for the non-Tarot folks out there) to help communicate with your muse — in images, not words.  So I followed the excercise.  It’s basically taking your character and asking questions, using the cards as prompts for brainstorming.  I’ve done this in the past, but using Tarot meanings, and my own meanings from over 10 years of reading the cards.  But, I have never used the images themselves to do this.

And being the eccentric chick I am, I tried a hard question.  Instead of using a troublesome character, I used the demons’ magic system as the troublesome character (hell, I’ve used the plot itself as the focus in the past…with good results), just to see where that would take me.

Using the Rohrig Tarot, a beautiful, very abstract yet dark deck (that immediately screamed pick me! pick me! when I thought about which of my 30+ decks to use…), I did the reading, except I virtually ignored the Tarot meanings, as instructed, which was tough, which is what Holly said.  You can take the reader out of Tarot, but you can’t take the Tarot out of the reader……

So now, thanks to Holly Lisle, I have a very good idea about the magic system.  I’ve found out that it involves use of a special magically-infused object, handed down through generations, and that the mind of the victim is virtually obliterated…..with images hitting them like raindrops.  The muse says that this is REALLY important, and I’m not clear on precisely how, but I trust her on this one.

I learned other things too, but that would be spoiling things.  All I gotta say is….poor Alisia.  I put her through the wringer in Pirouette 1.0, but this — this is almost akin to death.  It’s not, not by a long shot — she won’t die (so, Chris, if you’re reading this — it’s ok, I promise) , but it will involve a very magical, very messy death of sorts. 

But man.  What a story.  I think it is finally coming together. 🙂  All from a few questions and a Tarot deck.  Trust me, this book of Holly’s really works.  I command thee to go forth and buy it.  Immediately.  You won’t be disappointed.

In other news…I’ve moved the start date for the Rewrite of Doom to July 1st.  Mainly because I have a few other projects competing for attention (*cough indexing cough* *cough darkroom cough*) and I want to give myself as long as I need to do all the necessary pre-work.  I want this draft to be as smooth as possible — no tangents, no weird shit, just what’s in the outline.  I will allow myself time to meander — I have to or else I’ll get stir-crazy — but — I will consider these meanderings more carefully then I did before.  I will not write another 400k draft.  I’m capping it at 120k, which is a bit too long, but still acceptable.  Writing 1k a day will take me approximately 4 months.  I haven’t written any first draft material in forever.  I am getting twitchy, so this week I might take some time and tackle either Survivor or Requiem in Blue

Not much else going on, except that I took some kick-ass pics of my sister’s flowers in her backyard with my new camera.  I’m ecstatic.

Now, it is time for bed.  Me tired.

Vamps, necromancers, and Fae oh my!

Some big changes are happening for the Pirouette Rewrite.  I have been brainstorming, along with the help of some writer friends, ways to make my world –and its creatures–more unique.  Naturally, it’s been said since the dawn of time that there’s no such thing as being totally unique — that everything has been done before.  But I beg to differ.  I think a writer can, if she stretches her wings a bit, come up with something more unique, if not completely unique.

For instance, I mixed two races together and gave them similar magic.  While that’s not totally unique, I know (from careful research) that this mix hasn’t been done much out there.  The magic system is very different, again, not something I see everywhere.  I’ve used some different elements to make the magic system more different.  Hopefully, it will be good.

I tend to mix and match different ideas anyway, hoping to come up with a combination that’s completely new and exciting.  Take Requiem in Blue, for an example.  It’s not your average cyberpunk dystopic thing.  It has the added element of mind control, which is a fun thing to explore (only ficticiously, naturally).  I think the two in combination make Requiem that much more unique.

 Naturally, all things require a complete rebuild for worldbuilding, class system, etc, as well as the story itself.  Alot of the original (and proposed new plot before these changes) will need to be redone.  Luckily, I haven’t started the Rewrite yet, so everything can be in flux.  You’re probably wondering why I’d put myself through this.  Why not just roll with the Rewrite as is?  Why tinker?  Well….that’s the thing.  Alot of my decisions happened on the fly (as evidenced by the 400k manuscript) and alot of them weren’t consistent with the worldbuilding, or introduced new elements that just would not work.  Well, you ask, why not make it work?  Simple.  Because then the story would suffer.

In fantasy and sci-fi, especially, the worldbuilding needs to be top notch.  I can’t just decide one day that this magic, or element, has to go because it’s inconvenient.  It’s will undermine the story.  It’s like trying to mess with the physics of our world.  People don’t fly, right?  They don’t have wings.  If people could fly, our world would be much different, right?  And it would change everything.

Same thing with fictional worlds.  You don’t break your rules just because.  I did alot of that.  Telempathy was my answer for everything — that was the vampires’ major magic ability.  Something went wrong?  Use telempathy.  Alisia’s in a bind and can’t get out –use telempathy.  In my defense, I did make it possible to lose telempathy for awhile (“burning it out”) to impose limitations (another important thing in fictional magic systems) but even that got old and repetitive.  So I needed something new.  Something more logical and with limits.  This new magic system does all of that.  It’s governed by the lunar cycle and location — i.e. where the vamp or Fae is — either on our Earth or in there own parallel world.  It’s kind of like Faerie, where their magic is stronger in the parallel world vs. Earth. I still need a new name for Earth, too –a name that the magical races would use to describe us.

So I believe all of these changes are going to make it stronger.  I can feel it.  I can tell by the why my heart pounds when I think about it.  It’s so cool.  I really owe a debt of gratitude to the one friend who made this possible (she will know who she is, if she ever reads this) because while I came up with alot of it on my own, she was the catalyst for something big and major.  And I will always been grateful for that.

So I prolly won’t be able to start the Rewrite in June, unless I hit it hard this month, which was what I was supposed to do.  The edit isn’t done yet –but is close –and I do want to finish it in case I missed anything.  I still need to do another read-through to make notes on everything to change or keep, and use that along with all my new stuff to build the plot.  For all of this work, I will be using Holly Lisle’s Create a Character Clinic, Create a Culture Clinic, and Create a Plot Clinic.  I cannot recommend this books enough — they are out really really cool.  I’ve been waiting for an opportunity to use them, for real, and this is it.  I want this to work, and give it the best chance it has to succeed.  It’s my magnum opus, and I love it dearly.  And would love to see it in a bookstore one of these days.

So that’s what’s doing in my world. 

Figured Survivor out. *wipes forehead*

I was sweating bullets for awhile, worrying about how to integrate two separate –very good — outlines for the end.  I went over them today and made notes and…..they will fit almost seemlessly.  Go me!

And of course, naturally, Survivor will need its own “rewrite of doom.”  I’m going to work backwards from the scene I wrote this week, connecting it to the existing parts, then try to finish each individual plot thread.  I have quite a few.  *rolling eyes*  My muse just wouldn’t shut up.  She kept adding things.  Luckily, the bulk of it will stay.  There are a few tangents I took that will be going, though.

And the body count?  Currently, it’s at 2.  Paternity of the baby of the MC?  No clue.  It can be one of 3 men, and I’m just not sure which one would be best.  I could, theoretically, leave that unanswered until Ghost.  Must give that more thought.

But it’s finally shaping up!  I’m very excited.  This one’s been in progress for almost 2 years.  I had started it for a class at Forward Motion — where you take novel creation from your idea all the way to submitting the finished book to a publisher.  As I wrote it, I got deeper and deeper into this twisted tangle of a plot (and some very creepy psychological stuff) and fell in love.  But NaNo was approaching, and I wanted to participate, and Pirouette took over, save for a new first scene I wrote mid-last year.  And I’ve been poking at it ever since in between projects.  Now, I’d like for it to take some priority.  I want to finish the first draft, at least, this year.  The rewrite might have to wait, as getting Pirouette out to agent rounds is #1.  But I will fit this in someplace.  It’s just really cool, and I think it could be a very good book.  🙂  At least, I hope!

Also wrote 998 words of Requiem today.  A very creepy scene indeed.  Tomorrow, it’s gonna be working on editing Pirouette and Survivor’s Timeline of Doom.