scott_sanford: (Daria proofreads)
In the off season, when we are less obsessed with the act of writing and have more time to think about the art of writing, we often think about what we might do, what stories would interest us to read or that we would like, in retrospect, to have written.

Consider an automotive metaphor. Some people enjoy a big loud 4x4, crashing through the mud and underbrush in a grand exaltation of noise and prosthetic testosterone. Others want a luxury model, gliding gracefully from beginning to destination, with no rough machinery or unexpected noises disturbing the beauty of the trip. Still others don't care much for appearances and will quite happily putter along in their Volkswagon Beetles, content to know they'll get there eventually.

Nanowrimo isn't like that.

Nanowrimo is putting on a crash helmet and strapping yourself into a rocket sled pointed vaguely at the finish line. On November first you hit the ignition and, God willing, blast across the New Mexico desert leaving a flaming trail of screaming and broken parts, hoping the thing doesn't come apart on you.

If you're lucky the rocket engine doesn't burn out early or explode halfway through the run, and your carefully planned route doesn't suddenly take off for Utah without consulting you. At the end you coast gently across the finish line, smouldering but intact, thankful to have made it through alive and in one piece.

It's not very practical but it can be a lot of fun.
scott_sanford: (lemur)
I'm feeling pleased with myself today. After kicking around a story idea in my head, I blew all of Saturday evening scribbling down prose and filling up pages with handwriting. (It turns out I'm quite productive when deprived of the internet.) I went in to this uncertainly, as my concept seemed to require some exotic framing techniques and two narrative voices, which meant I wasn't at all sure my writing skill was up to it, but in one burst of work I'm within sight of the ending and the first draft seems...readable. Yay, me.

And an update on Sunday night: the first draft is done; one story from concept to finished first draft in under 36 hours (only about 2800 words, but a functional story). Damn, this has been a productive weekend. I rock!
scott_sanford: (Default)
I'm posting this so I will not lose the link to this article about cities and economics, which is not only intellectually interesting but useful to anyone doing world building for fiction or RPG purposes.

PS: For the, oh, two people who read me but not James Nicoll, see here for his take on it.

Huh

Aug. 20th, 2011 08:37 pm
scott_sanford: (Default)
This was a surprise. Remember I mentioned I had finished a first draft recently? I poked at the website of a web comic which, years ago, had planted one of the idea seeds which eventually got into my story; surprisingly I discovered that while the comic hasn't updated in over 18 months, the artist is not only still around but on LiveJournal.

Granted that there's not much similarity beyond both stories having an order of priestesses who serve a river god and have an odd dress code, but I still hope my inspirator[1] is pleased to have dropped that late-developing plot bunny on me.

1) I'm an author; that can be a word if I want it to be. Shut up.
scott_sanford: (Default)
I really shouldn't be talking about writing here, as my readers mostly aren't fiction writers and the exceptions have published novels and/or gotten nominated for Hugos, so I'm either talking to the wall or being the n00b who should STFU. Read more... )

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