Friday, October 31, 2014

Happy Halloween!

Now Playing: Marilyn Manson - This Is Halloween (cover)

So quick note: That's my favorite version of that song. I even made a video about it a few years ago.

That's so totes my video magnum opus >_>

Or well...maybe not. It'd have to compete against the Justice League: Environmental Invasion movie :P

But anyways. Ahem.


Since this is Halloween AKA NaNoWriMo Eve, I am not going to have  a lot of time to blog throughout November--and even some of December, what with moving, packing, traveling, gaming >.>

But this has been a fun Halloween so far, and I wanted to give a quick update before I have to run off to a Kudzu Review meeting.

My parents sent me a care package filled with candies and chips and chocolate a few days ago. I've been eating and sharing its contents for most of today and some of yesterday. So gooood.

I gave it my hat~

And since I actually bothered to bring up a costume this Halloween, I've been wearing it around all morning. I went to CVS pharmacy and the mall and Panera Bread with a friend, and going back and forth with bags and food meant taking like six different school buses throughout the morning. I got a lot of compliments on the costume so WOO!

I took this early this morning.
You can see my wall of sticky notes just behind me
At the mall bus stop, when we were exiting, one guy approached me and my friend and asked us to explain Halloween. He was probably a foreign exchange student--although from where I'm not sure--since he legitimately was mildly confused about what it involved. I'm not...100% sure where Halloween is or isn't celebrated.

It was actually kind of difficult to explain what the hell Halloween was all about o-e Since "you dress up and eat candy," didn't seem like enough. I gave him the few background knowledge I know, and even threw in a mention of Dia De Los Muertos, though I didn't get too into it.

I hope it didn't confuse him...

Okay, aside from the candy and bad Chinese food (because how else would I celebrate Halloween?) I'm going to a carnival show later tonight, like at 8. Though we're walking over there at like 6 p.m so we don't miss on any seats.

Then tomorrow...


And there's still a few things I need to figure out, but you know what? I'm excited. I can't wait to see where this novel goes.

Hope you have lots of candy or chocolate or pumpkin or alcohol today--whatever you like!

UPDATE: Circus was awesome. As were the zombies.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014


So for all the complaining I did last year--last fall semester basically--this isn't exactly turning out to be the Best Semester Ever. I'm at odds right now, because I almost don't want to talk about it. And it's not for any questionable reasons--nothing illegal, no dangers of pissing off someone who might stumble upon this, etc, etc. I'm okay in classes and my roommates are great girls. I've made two new friends and NaNo is looking promising. (Actually, in a way, I made two new friends because of NaNoWriMo).

But of course, my dear university here is trying to throw me under the bus and just squash all sense of anticipation and joy.

And in a way, I don't want to talk about it because I don't want to reread this years down the line and be reminded of how much this all sucked. And I also spend so much time worrying about it, I don't want to summarize it and go through a detailed list thereby forcing myself to relieve the worry tenfold.

Looking through my post history and, well, my life, I've noticed that I'm just not very good at dealing with bad things. When something goes off tracks--whether or not I am to blame or whether or not it's the universe being a dick--I just freeze up, duck my head underneath a pillow, and wallow. Ohhhh how I wallow.

And yet there's never going to be a point of my life were things aren't going to go wrong. There's never going to be an age or a time where things won't suck. (And there's never going to be a point of my life where I'll be free of worrying if any of this is counting as double negatives. They're to each other...but in terms of meaning...oh god, IDK, badly written sentences, don't feel like fixing).

I'm not even sure why I'm writing this. Maybe to try and tell myself to deal with it. Isn't that the point of growing up? Facing the crappy stuff life throws at us rather than jumping off the bridge of despair?

Millennium Girl is in a (literal) drawer at the bottom of my desk. I kept shoving writing stuff in there--stories and essays workshopped by my fiction and nonfiction classes--so I just hid the manuscript and notes alongside the other papers. I've neglected it because I felt so overwhelmed by the initial feedback and my own growing criticism. With Vanguard's Exodus just two days away from being my main project, I shouldn't let these childish apprehensions keep me from moving forward. I have to edit MG and I have to start and finish VE, and I have to revise and edit and revise them both. I don't have any excuses this time. They're not publishable yet, but unlike all the others that came before them, these will have a chance. I shouldn't waste that.

So I don't know. I think this is a reminder to myself: even if things suck next semester--because of one reason or another--and they continue to suck well into my graduation...who cares? I should save the wallowing for the good(?) stuff >>

Monday, October 27, 2014

30 Week Writing Survey - Week 10: Weird Situations

Now Playing: Elliot Smith - Between the Bars

I finished my outline :D

It starts with the yellow line of post-its (the lighting is so bad you might not be able to see it) ending right at the tip of the door handle. It continues with the lime green at the far right side. It's super vague--the further down you go, the vaguer it gets. And I have no idea how long certain sections will be, and I'm missing some stuff.

But it's there, and I can use it or ignore it or alter it as much as I want. Finally, I've got some guidance.

This is the other wall:
Sorry, weird angle. And it's kinda grainy.
My phone's camera was being a meany-head.
That slightly longer bottom line of post-it notes is my Numbers Line o-e It's where I wrote down the binary planets' radius, length of day, surface gravity, distance, etc. And I have the stats of some solar system objects (Earth, Moon, Mars, Mercury, Pluto, Charon, Titan, Europa, etc) in there for comparison's sake.

There's still a lot I haven't figured out. And NaNo is closing in, less than a week away. But I made a new friend in the NaNoWriMo forums and we've been bouncing ideas and concepts off each other.  I have enough groundwork to get started.


But anyways, enough updates. Moving onto to the survey~

QUESTION 10: What are some really weird situations your characters have been in? Everything from serious canon scenes to meme questions counts!

I'm having some trouble remembering weird situations, since I'm not too good a judge on what's weird or what isn't. These are some of the ones I've decided on, though not for all my stories o-e

Only one.
  • Hitomi jumps out of a moving vehicle, tackles a Hunter (genetically enhanced SOMNUS soldier), and somehow shoves her handgun between his eyes and kills him before he can react. She's...not in the best of states afterwards.

Again, just one I can think of:
  • It starts off with a strange, purple-haired, bloodied woman climbing into Caesar's bedroom through his window. 
    • And it sounds even creepier when phrased like that. Will it help to say she knocked and waited for him to let her in?

Millennium Girl
There aren't too many, just some that sound odd out of context.
  • Lilith drops the line "Can I please use your door? I'd like to minimize the number of times I climb out of windows," in casual conversation. 
    • They're in the eighth floor. (And that fact doesn't matter to her).
  • A day of "practicing" involves Lilith continuously jumping off the twentieth floor of a still-in-construction building while Yuki times her.
  • Lilith punches out a mirror then darts out a house with no explanation. She spends like twenty minutes running away.
  • she gets the motorcycle >_>
  • That whole scene where Ansel "shows" her their origins.
  • Everything that happens after Lilith blows up the abandoned shack.
  • Honestly, the number of times Lilith ends up naked/in her underwear in this book is a bit disturbing. But there's only so much clothes can survive.

Enkindled With Chains (novella)
  • Not counting all the odd things Dream sees upon arrival, the first individual she talks to is a slightly hot tempered doll.
    • And she offers to help Dream out for no reason other than the fact that she just kind of wants an owner.
    • And they decide the best form of transportation for the doll is if she's tied to Dream's waist.
  • Dream walks around with only one shoe for the entire story.
    • She arrived to Enkindle barefoot, and then some shoemaker guy on the road was so disgusted by this that he throws a single boot at her face.
      • And it fits perfectly.
  • Dream shoves her hand into a hole on the ground and pulls out a crow 
    • A hundred of 'em try to gnaw her hand out before she manages to get the one.
  • Dream and Muñequita have to take the main road and walk to Nowhere from Somewhere to find the dragon.
  • There's a robot with a visible, black heart coated in oil, pumping at the center of his metallic chest.
  • The jester. Just...just the jester. 
    • This guy jumps around everywhere, talks ten million words a minute, insults/compliments Dream's appearance in one breath, and, oh yeah, harvests the organs of humans and stitches them up to build a giant. 
    • His entire scene at the school is one weird situation.
  • Dream gets punched, square in the chest, by a dragon.
    • He hits her with his snout. I called this bit the Nose-Punch of Destiny.
  • She blows up another dragon a few pages later.
    • Thank god she has good aim or that plan of "throw the flammable liquid into her mouth a split second before she breathes fire" would have never worked.
  • Cervantes wears a cool old Spanish knight armor. Except it's not an armor anymore. It's becoming his body. It's very Fullmetal Alchemist. (They try to take his glove off and just find empty space).
  • Dream's gradual "transformation." It's a bit creepy on top of weird.

From the short stories:
Daylight Runaway
  • Ophelia deciding to leave home, dragging along her imaginary friend, packing a gun and tiny shorts, all at the age of thirteen.
    • On Christmas Eve.
  • She accepts a ride from an odd woman calling herself Caroline Rose--who refuses to take off her motorcycle helmet even when they get to the city and into her apartment.
    • And she somehow seems to know of Tommy, Ophelia's imaginary friend.
      • No matter how much Ophelia denies his existence.
  • Ophelia uses Caroline's bathroom to clean up. In there, Tommy loses it--still angry at the situation--and starts to wreak havoc.
    • So they get into a screaming match.
      • Which Caroline finds hilarious.
  • At the urging of Tommy, Ophelia asks Caroline pointblank if she's getting sold into human trafficking. (Y'know, just in case).
  • Caroline's apartment is mostly composed of unfinished watercolor paintings of exploding suns or nebulae.
    • Which then start to melt.
    • Just as the lights in the city are going off.
  • The trio slide down the curve of the building to escape the melting paint.
  • The paint grows so much in number it floods and covers the entire city.
  • Motorcycle on the rooftops!
  • The lights start accumulating inside a single building.
    • So Ophelia's plan is to, what else, shoot out a window to let the light out.
      • While she's in the back of Caroline's motorcycle.
      • And then...just everything that happens after that. 

The Way Out Is Through and Her Singularity (short stories with characters from the NaNo novel. Though TWOIT is no longer canon >.>)
  • Cyrano simultaneously trying to convince Valentine to stay as an engineer while telling Kaede to piss off because he doesn't need a pilot.
    • In separate rooms, without either of the girls knowing of each other.
    • (Granted, he's an AI operating the entire ship, so it's not so difficult to have multiple conversations on different channels/areas).
  • Kaede immediately deciding she's all up for finding The Earth That Was. (Because yolo?)
  • Kaede and Valentine trying to get to the launch room in an attempt to prevent the impending double homicide.
  • Isadora telling Dr. Monroe point blank that she could trigger a nuclear holocaust if she wanted to.
    • And Monroe just kind of laughing it off.

Rhyme and Reason (fairy tale)
  • The little girl finding the giant and asking if he'll make her a friend.
  • The giant using a knife to saw her in half and split her in two.
  • Sending the now-pair-of-girls on a mission to get his house back from a witch of the woods.
  • Tricking the witch into thinking there's only one person there so she can lure Rhyme in and then Reason can attack.

Andddd that's all I can think of o-e Daylight and Enkindled might be my favorites >.>

Monday, October 20, 2014

30 Week Writing Survey - Week 9: Creating Characters

Now Playing: Peter Schilling - Major Tom

November is sooo close. I'm kind of freaking out since I'm not done planning, but at least I finished a good chunk of the future essays. There's still some I need to change and some stuff I need to do later down the line, but the main, annoying stuff is done.

I went tailgating on Saturday too, but...not to the actual game. Mostly because I don't know how I feel about supporting the football team when the rape scandal that happened not too long ago wasn't properly dealt with, making it clear this university and all the sports fans care more about the game than the victim that suffered the attack and the possible following stigma.


Tailgating was fun. It was kind of adorable to see so many little kids there alongside old ladies--everyone drowning in garnet and gold clothing. It's just...kind of cute. Maybe in the future I'd take my kids to football games in FSU, buy them the cute gear, set up barbecues, let them play football while the adults drink beer. Because Carla and I live close to the stadium now, we went tailgating there, and I think that's the more family friendly area.

Oh, and I found twenty dollars. I was so excited, but because I'm slowly turning into a boring adult now, I'm just going to put the money in my FSU card and use it for printing and laundry :P

Anyways, that's it for updates. Moving on~

QUESTION 9: How do you get ideas for your characters? Describe the process of creating them. 

I went into detail about this process in this post right here, back in May, but I'll answer the first part of the question in some detail.

The "how do you get ideas?" bit is complicated, since I'm never sure. It's always through something else. I knew of Wendy and Yukiko after watching Exit Through The Gift Shop. I met Lilith after some time mulling over Beyond Two Souls's Jodie, Ellie from The Last of Us, Elizabeth from Bioshock Infinite, and Lara from the Tomb Raider reboot. I didn't know it at first, but slowly Ansel became my response to what's considered heartbreaking romantic heroes, and I ended up modeling the way he acts by some antagonist/villain performances of Michael Fassbender.

Dream's mannerisms were partially inspired by River Tam and Luna Lovegood, and her character came from the biblical heroine, Esther, who's her namesake. Oh and Echo from Dollhouse inspired both Legion and Dream. The Legion and Dragon conflict happened because of Kill Bill.

I have some kind of dumb ones o-e Especially in Ataraxia, if one can believe in. In that, the basic relationship of Sonya and Caesar happened because I saw the poster for the Jason Statham movie Safe. And even before watching the movie, I just knew I wanted to write a relationship dynamic like that. And even though Final Fantasy XIII is...painful to talk about, I was probably one of the only people who loved Hope, and adored his relationship with Lighting, so that was another influence. Katya happened because of Ma-Ma in Dredd, and because of the sibling conflict in Prince of Egypt (yeah, this is a little weird).

And of course, sci-fi begat sci-fi. Mary Shelley's Frankenstein and Bladerunner (adapted from Philip K Dick's Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?) as well as the Mass Effect and Halo universes, have done a lot to influence my creation and development of everything in Vanguard's Exodus. And Amber Jackson was inspired by Master Chief from the Halo series, Cameron from Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, the Major from Ghost in the Shell, and a little bit of Miranda from Mass Effect. (Actually...I better not list everything that's led to this novel >> This page would be 20x longer).

Now this is the relevant part of the previous post that answers the second part of the question:
Characters come to me visually. I learn how old they are, as well as their race, age, height, sexuality, nationality, career of choice, and even clothing style. It's oddly detailed and sometimes changes around, but it always comes out in chunks. After a long while, I look around for a name and test it out. Before typing anything, I scribble ideas down on notebooks. Occasionally, I fill up a character bio....
It does take me a while to really get to know my characters. But when I do, I start to love them as if they're real people. And I'm thankful for their presence and proud of their growth, as if they were living, breathing individuals rather than pieces of me...
So they come in glimpses, and then drag me along to see what happens.

Monday, October 13, 2014

30 Week Writing Survey - Week 8: Genre

Now Playing: Destiny OST - The Traveler and The Fallen

I forgot to mention something important yesterday o-e THE NANOWRIMO SITE RELAUNCHED. I've been wasting time in the forums, of course, and still planning for my NaNo novel. And I just...there's so much to much I have to figure out...and I'm entering that usual This Will Always Suck And You'll Never Be Published paranoia.

But yeah.

At least I got the synopsis down? It's unpolished, and skirts the dangers of character soup and too much back story/not enough character with some weird rhythm thrown in for good measure >.< But I like getting at least the general idea of the story down. Or at least the beginning of it...

This is what I have of it so far:

At the dawn of the 25th century, through advancements in technology and to accommodate the rapidly growing population, humanity has surged throughout the solar system, but the drive to explore neighboring systems continues. In 2402, the newly discovered Vanir system--some eight light years away---is believed to be harboring binary worlds with possible early life forms. A.I's and machines are sent to collect data. Nine years after their arrival, contact is lost. 

Amber Jackson is the first successful genetically engineered human, operating a fully cybernetic body. She is a specimen, a soldier, and one of humanity's greatest achievements. It is because of her illustrious life with the military that she is recruited for a mission to Vanir. Dr. Kathleen Monroe--director of Promethean Cybernetics and one of the modern pioneers of Artificial Intelligence--plans to find the reason behind the A.I's silence. 

It is September 2440, fourteen years since humanity lost contact with the A.I's in Vanir. Dr. Monroe, Amber Jackson, and a small crew within the UNSS Valkyrie leave the solar system in route to the binary worlds.

Link for the NaNo novel page.

But anyways, speaking of sci-fi ...

QUESTION 8: What's your favorite genre to write? To read? 

ALL of science fiction and fantasy is my thing--both as a reader and a writer.

The weight of these components vary per story. Sometimes there's a heavy focus on A.I's, spaceships, interstellar travel, world building, politics of kingdoms, magical rules, mythical creatures, etc, etc. Other times, it's as casual as one tiny thing that's hanging in the background. I always focus on characters and not the worlds, but I also don't want to say I don't write stuff like "other" sci-fi and fantasy. Mostly because I worry that statements like that are just unfair to the genres. It's not uncommon for other writers try and put themselves apart from sci-fi and fantasy, as if they're just considered too childish or simplistic or downright unattached from reality to be approached as character-focused, mature fiction. It's kind of like when Stephenie Meyer said her book The Host wasn't really like other sci-fi because it was a very human story and had no time travel or laser guns or yadayada. It's the same with some of Margaret Atwood's stuff, or Orwell's 1984 (professors throw fucking fits at the idea of it being sci-fi EVEN THOUGH IT SO TOTALLY IS), or even the kind of awesome I Have No Mouth And I Must Scream story. Even Philip Pullman--who has witches and talking animals in His Dark Materials-rejects the label of fntasy.

Human-centered, realistic, interesting sci-fi and fantasy is not uncommon!!!! There's endless possibilities and subcategories in sci-fi/fantasy, which is one of the reasons I love them so much.

...which is why this rant just happened.


I've been obsessed with these genres since I was very young. Fantasy came first, I guess because it was a lot more accessible to me. Harry Potter happened, and though I was too young to understand Lord of the Rings, I did get to see the last movie in theaters and was enamored by the world. My parents also bought me the His Dark Materials trilogy a little after the film adaptation came out, and though I didn't make it to the third book that first reading round, I adoredddddd The Golden Compass and The Subtle Knife.

For a long time, I resisted  writing sci-fi because it intimidated me. All the works I knew from the genre had left great legacies and profound impacts in the real world. Or at least had a great amount of attention paid to the sciences backing them up. I was certain I could never write such great things.

Video games were what surprisingly helped me open up to sci-fi, as well as the TV show Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles. It was because of finishing the Halo trilogy that I decided I wanted to be a sci-fi writer, and Terminator: TSCC geared me toward post-apocalyptic narratives with a touch of cyberpunk. That's how Redemption was born. After Mass Effect and reading the first book of Asimov's Foundation saga, as well as Ender's Game, I knew I had to try more of it--space opera, heavy, soft, military, cyberpunk, etc, science fiction.

I think the older I grow, the less I'm interested in "small" stories >.> I somehow work in fight scenes, chase scenes, large scale conflict, one or two explosions, etc. I don't really care about the social conflicts of a small suburban town isolated from the rest of the world. Because nOPE. IT'S ALL ABOUT THE FLASHY STUFF :D BLOW SOME SHIT UP.

I promise, I'm not writing shitty Hollywood explosions for no reason...I care about my characters, I love complex development! I just also really love firework-like things.

Okay, I'm not doing much to support the "sci-fi and fantasy can be mature and realistic" argument butttttttt just because I'm not interested in super small scale stuff doesn't mean the genre doesn't have that kind of thing. And besides, if you can believe it, flashy stuff doesn't have to take away from the focus of characters and interpersonal conflicts. It's just happening along, y'know, machine gun fire or something.

There's so much to offer :D So I'll go to the grandiose corner and party it up there.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Boring school updates Dx

Now Playing: Hiroyuki Sawano - 2chi城 (Everyday Life)

I had an awesome realization, and I'm so proud of myself: I've worked in sci-fi in all my classes this semester. For fiction it was easy; I just turned in a sci-fi story. But for nonfiction? In my first short essay piece, I discussed my trip to Ecuador with references to alternative realities/multiverses (I also left ambiguous the reason why my family left the country in the first place, and my whole class ended up getting weird vibes. My professor jokingly asked me if we fled because I killed someone). In zombie film, when writing my obituary, I said I died at 38 protesting for the rights of A.I's/robots. And I am so writing my final essay for Women in Lit on Mary Shelley's Frankenstein (and possibly connecting it to Octavia Butler's Bloodchild.)

Awww yiss. My first fall semester was all about the feminism. This is all about the sci-fi >:D

But sadly, sci-fi might also be the death of me. Maybe. Either that, or I should stop blaming possible bias against genre fiction for my possible rejections from advanced level workshop classes.

I'm applying right now. There are a few--only two fiction writing ones--that don't have any application processes, just some simple requirements. But the only one that's at a good time is with the professor I'm taking now, and while I really like her and her class, I doubt either of us will be thrilled to have me there a second time. I don't want to take the spot of someone who's never had her as a professor, not to mention it'd be helpful for me to have different instructors. I would have loved to have been here in uni longer just to have different professors, but I can't justify taking another 5k in loans a semester just to take one or two classes I don't even need in terms of credits.

But the only other non-application class ends at 9 PM. You cannot pay me to bike or walk or pretty much move through this campus once nightfall happens. Yeah, I suppose I could take the Safe Bus back to my place and avoid the creepy areas, but I don't think I could get away with making it my weekly transportation thing.

So I'm down to applying. Which means I'll possibly get rejected. The Monday class I really want is uncharted waters--I have no idea if the professor likes genre fiction, or will like the story I'm thinking of sending her. Everyone at my workshop class--including my teacher--had great things to say about it, but it's not very long. And it's sci-fi. And it's...just...



Also I applied for a few jobs.

Will I get them? Will I actually last with them? Will my coworkers/boss like me? Will I embrace the struggles of a working, taxed, adult, or will I run away screaming?

>_> Who knows....I probably won't even get hired because embarrassingly empty resume is embarrassingly empty.


Monday, October 6, 2014

30 Week Writing Survey - Week 7: Music

Now Playing: y'know, I listened and relistened to pretty much all the songs listed below...

I totally forgot to say this last time: Happy October! :3 I'm so excited for Halloween~ And as the time for NaNo approaches, THIS IS THE MONTH to figure out the environments and start to sketch out an outline-ish. At least I kind of know the number of hours in a day for the binary planets >.>

Oh and I should probably get my essays and short stories out of the way now. Pssshh, school work always disrupts my writing time.

But anyways, now for the fun question :D

QUESTION 7: Do you listen to music while you write? What kind? Are there any songs you like to relate/apply to your characters?

Yep! Always, every time, all the time, and sometimes it doesn't even make sense, but I love it nonetheless. Soundtracks are always a big thing for writers, but I don't like giving that as an answer because it's so vague. Instead of saying that, then, I'm going to delve in a little bit.

The composers I've listened to the most are Martin O'Donnell, Micheal Salvatori, Yoko Kanno, and Clint Mansell. And the one band that has music connected to pretty much everything I write is Nine Inch Nails--which is why they're my favorite. I've written soooo many stories while listening to their albums, and the atmosphere in their music has influenced me a lot. (...their...his...ughhh, Trent Reznor, y u gotta make pronouns so complicated).

In no particular order, here's a list of some story's musical influences.

>_> And there's a lot...

The Way Out Is Through

When the fall 2013 semester started, I was taking a workshop class that required me to turn in three stories, one of them for peer critique. While I was writing the latter, I was trying to find music for it to help me in the development. Coincidentally, NIN's Hesitation Marks had come out in August, so I listened to the whole album and managed to complete The Way Out Is Through in a matter of days. (Although weirdly enough, the actual song "The Way Out Is Through" has no influence on it).

I've said this often, but I don't pay close attention to lyrics. When they fit the scene or moment or general story I'm writing, it's often completely without any manipulation of mine or even initial awareness. When I wrote TWOIT I listened a lot to "Various Methods of Escape" and "I Would For You." And I know what the lyrical themes are. I can sing along and probably engage in some discussion if I focused on them, but when I was writing, the vocals worked as just another instrument. They invoked feeling and images separate of lyrical content, so I wrote what I saw.

The Way Out Is Through also had some Pink Floyd influence when I was still trying to figure out the concept--back when I thought it'd be a screenplay. "Us and Them" was the main song to launch the basic plot of the derelict spaceship, as well as "Speak to Me", "Breathe", "On the Run" and "Time"; all from The Dark Side of the Moon album.

Wayyyyy back when I was trying to think up of Kaede and Valentine--mistakenly seeing them as teenagers rather than my mechanic and pilot--they were my Hurricane Girls, and so I was listening to Billy Idol's "Cradle of Love" and Simple Mind's "Don't You Forget About Me."


As always, "The Four of Us Are Dying" has unofficially been Ataraxia's theme song. Trent Reznor had--and might still have--The Slip album up for free on the NIN website. And for a long time, that was the only music in my new computer. So I listened to it a bunch whilst I was in school or outside, away from internet connection, without Pandora or YouTube. A lot of the planning and early chapters of Ataraxia happened with the album, as well as some Johnny Cash songs, like "Redemption Day," "God's Gonna Cut You Down", and "Ain't no Grave."  In addition, "24" by Jem and the Dredd soundtrack contributed to a lot of writing--and Ma-Ma in the movie inspired Katya's character. Another early inspiration for Katya and some conflicts with Sonya came with the songs "Container Park" and "Escape Wavefold" from the Hanna soundtrack by The Chemical Brothers.


The reason I started writing Redemption was because of a story my father told me whilst listening to Billy Idol's Cyberpunk album, but the actual writing happened with the entire Halo and some tracks from the first and second Mass Effect soundtracks. Which is a bit weird, since those two are space operas with distinctly different kinds of music, but were connected to Redemption in my mind. The one Halo album that didn't influence it (excluding the Reclaimer Saga stuff because it wasn't out at the time) was the entire ODST soundtrack--but that went to bits of Ataraxia. Aside from Halo and ME, the Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles soundtrack helped me a lot--especially since this show was one of the heavier influences on my novel. It launched me into writing a post-apocalyptic story.

Nikki and Hitomi's theme song was "Rise" by Origa, off the Ghost in the Shell: SAC 2nd GIG soundtrack. Also, the Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty theme song.

Oh, and there's some other companion songs I really loved, like the "Mad World" cover by Gary Jules, "Du Hast" by Rammstein, "We're in This Together" by NIN, and "I'm Coming Home" by Murder By Death. A bunch of rock tunes got integrated into the writing process.

The Band

Speaking of which, my first draft of The Band had a ton of references to rock music for obvious reasons. And like the true eight grade hipster I was, said references were mostly from old-ish rock o-e I used the song lists from Guitar Hero 3 as a starting point.

(Which, now that I think about it, makes me the opposite of a hipster. I'm suppose to be born with the knowledge of this music, after all, or just not get it from such a mainstream source).

The Night Kingdom

This one got written to the most common soundtrack/trailer music, so stuff from Two Steps From Hell, X-Ray Dog, and Immediate Music. Then some rewrites--along with Anne's story--involved some of Ramin Djawadi's music from Game of Thrones and the Avatar: The Last Airbender soundtrack.

Enkindled With Chains (novella) and associated characters

Dream had her own theme songs >.> Because I'm really lame like that. Her songs were "Blinding" by Florence and the Machine, "Between Two Points" by The Glitch Mob feat. Swan, and she shared a fight theme with Spirit, it being "Panic Switch" by Silversun Pickups.

With Legion, I always picture her when I listen to "Broken Gates", off the Mombasa Suite in the Halo 2 soundtrack. She had a fight scene I wrote with Ennio Morricone's "Ecstasy of Gold" from The Good, The Bad and The Ugly. And since her conflict with Dragon was partially inspired by Kill Bill's Bride vs. Bill conflict, their theme is "The Lonely Shepard." Archangel doesn't have any personal theme songs, but his song with Dream is from a cover in Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, called "Donald, Where's Your Trousers." (The show kind of has a strange, beautiful take on it).

All four of them shared Snow Patrol's "What if This Storm Ends" as a theme.

The novella had some hardcore theme songs >_> The obvious one is "Dragon Boy" from Joe Hisaishi's Spirited Away soundtrack, but I also listened to the Machine Vandals song "Black Dawn" (also a super early influence on Ataraxia) and "Lonely Dusk." I also used to listen to some Danny Elfman stuff while planning the world, the song "Sayuri's Theme" by John Williams from the Memoirs of a Geisha soundtrack, and How To Destroy Angels' "A Drowning."

Rosegrave and Whiskey

My two redheaded serial killers had influence from (surprise, surprise) Nine Inch Nails music. I don't really like "Closer" but it sort of connects to the two of them, along with NIN's covers of "Physical" and "Suck" and the originals "Sunspots", "With Teeth", and "Reptile." Other songs that remind me of R&W are "Summertime Killer", "Flower of Carnage", and "Goodnight Moon" from the Kill Bill soundtrack and "Conquest" by The White Stripes. And some music from The Motorcycle Diaries, since their story takes place in a fictionalized version of Quito, as well as inspired by other Latin American cities.

NaNoWriMo 2014 Project, early plannings for Amber and Miranda, short stories Her Singularity and The Companion Unit

Most of my stuff with Amber Jackson, Miranda, and anything involving the AI Isadora and Dr. Kathleen Monroe happened while listening to the Ghost in the Shell OSTs. From the movies: "Making of a Cyborg" and "Kugutsuuta ura mite chiru." From the show: "Dear John" and "Torukia". It also got some Halo and ME stuff. Halo Reach's "Birth of A Spartan" and the ending theme of the first Mass Effect, "M4 (Part II)" by the Faunts. Plus some of Hiroyuki Sawano's stuff.

Oh, oh, oh, and for my A.I's, right now, their combined theme song is "Covenant Dance", from the Halo: Combat Evolved soundtrack.

Anne's story had a lot of planning done with Hans Zimmer's Man of Steel soundtrack, the Mausoleum Suite from Halo 2, and "Binary Sunset" by John Williams. Also, some of the writing was done with the Skyrim soundtrack, especially the main theme, and--as mentioned above--the GOT and Avatar: TLA music.

Millennium Girl
This one got written with Hiroyuki Sawano's Attack on Titan soundtrack o-e Even though it's all epic and awesome and grand, and MG is kind of a small urban fantasy story, it still fit in my head >> It was such a big influence, I gave Yuki the composer's surname as an homage.

Now because I finished this one not too long ago, I can just give you a list >_> Beware it might feel like it's all over the place, but a lot of it either inspired or helped in the writing of a bunch of scenes. In no particular order,
  • All of the Attack on Titan/Shingeki no Kyojin OST
    • Mostly these:
      • The Reluctant Heroes
      • EMA
      • DOA
      • Vogel im Kafig
      • Bauklötze
  • The Cure - Burn*
  • Nine Inch Nails - Dead Souls* (cover)
    • You know what, let's just do a sublist of this:
      • The Day The Whole World Went Away
      • Just Like You Imagined
      • The Hand That Feeds
      • Every Day Is Exactly the Same
      • The Fragile
        • (both the Still and regular version)
  • Kill Bill OST - About Her
  • Gustavo Cerati - Traccion a sangre
  • Alice Smith - She
    • (Wendy's theme.)
  • Enrique Bunbury - Salomé
  • Phosphorescent - Song for Zula
  • London Grammar - Devil Inside (cover)
  • Beyond Two Souls OST
    • Jodie's Theme
    • My Imaginary Friend
  • Berserk OST
    • Gattsu
    • Behelit
  • The Fountain OST
    • Holy Dread!
    • Together We Will Forever
    • Stay With Me
    • The Last Man
  • Game of Thrones OST - Love in the Eyes
  • Princess Mononoke OST
    • Mononoke Hime theme 
    • The Legend of Ashitaka
  • Red Dead Redemption OST - Far Away
  • Fever Ray - If I Had A Heart
  • Zack Hemsey
    • This is Our Legacy
    • Vengeance
  • Civil Twilight - Letters From The Sky
...this was suppose to be a short, summary post.


Oh god. I still could add so much to the individual categories and I could go into so much detail of the specific song influences in the Halo tracks, and how some songs I heard from trailers, and how much I've added to the NaNo novel's playlist right now, more T_T

Ahem. There's some useless shit you never needed to know.

Shows how obsessive I am about this kind of thing :P

PS: I hope you didn't take a shot every time I said "soundtrack".'d be so dead right now. I avoided pointing out just how many of these songs overlap because this post doesn't need to be twice as long. It's already too much @_@ Oh gawd.

*Both of these I heard on The Crow soundtrack (take another shot).

Thursday, October 2, 2014

For Exodus (updates)

Now Playing: Halo: Reach OST - Beta Suite

I got such a good response for the Isadora/Dr. Monroe piece, that I am legitimately sure my next NaNo project could be my best written novel to date.


If I finish it.

And get the science right.

And the characters--minor and secondary.

And write a good ending.

And generally don't let the plot slip through my fingers like what happened with Millennium Girl >_>

@_@ I am so doomed.

Planning is well underway, as evidence by the rise in sticky notes. Not that they've stopped with the daily escape attempts.

Plus here's some inspiration art!

Fisheye Placebo: Ch1 by yuumei.

I can't find a title for this one, but the GeekTyrant article credits CGHUB artist fightPUNCH - though their link is broken. Here's the source link I have.

A hundred years by cat-meff.

Black Valkyrie by streetX222.

I'm excited. I've never had so much come together for one novel: old characters I've been thinking about for a few years + environment I've been thinking about for years + new characters that have been written into well received short stories + visual art inspiration + regular inspiration (books, movies, video games. music) + walls and notebooks full of ongoing research, dialogue, and ideas = HOPEFULLY SOMETHING GOOD DX.

We'll see how much I fall into despair come NaNo. Hopefully little posts like these remind me of the bliss that came once upon a time (in planning).
"Science and science fiction have done a kind of dance over the last century... The scientists make a finding. It inspires science fiction writers to write about it, and a host of young people read the science fiction and are excited, and inspired to become scientists...which they do, which then feeds again into another generation of science fiction and science..."
- Carl Sagan, in his message to future explorers of Mars.