Sunday, November 30, 2014

Vanguard's Exodus - Playlist (Updated)

EDIT: I edited this a lot as the writing went on.

As the pain of NaNo comes to an end--and so does my penultimate semester in university--I thought I'd share the music that helped write this story o-e sort of. There's still a lottttt to do.

But so far, this is the playlist I've used while writing Vanguard's Exodus (and some related short stories that served as character backstories or just getting to know them personality wise):
  • Martin O'Donnell and Micheal Salvatori
    • The Halo trilogy (and Wars ODST + Reach) OSTs, notably:
      • In Amber Clad
      • Love Theme
      • Covenant Dance
      • Gravemind
      • The Flood
      • Infiltrate
      • The Gun Pointed At The Head of the Universe
      • Unyielding
      • Broken Gates
        • In fact, most of the Mombasa Suite
      • Cairo Suite
      • Warthog Run
      • Uphill, Both Ways
      • Fingerprints Are Broken
      • Spirit of Fire
      • Out of Shadow
      • To Kill A Demon
      • Movement (Bonus Track)
      • Exodus
    • Destiny's OST (with C. Paul Johnson), most notably:
      • The Traveler
      • Excerpt from the Ecstasy
      • Excerpt from the Hope
      • Excerpt from the Union
      • Guardian
  • Nine Inch Nails
    • The Fragile, in particular:
      • La Mer
      • The Frail
      • The Wretched
      • Ripe (With Decay)
    • From other albums and EPs:
      • A Warm Place
      • Adrift and At Peace
      • The Persistence of Loss
      • Another Version Of The Truth
      • Various Methods of Escape
      • I Would For You
      • Non-Entity
    • Trent Reznor with Atticus Ross, separate of NIN
      • Hand Covers Bruise
      • Intriguing Possibilities
      • Magnetic
      • Technically Missing
    • Trent Reznor with Peter Murphy
      • Strange Kind of Love
      • Atmosphere (cover)
  • Mass Effect soundtracks (They have like a million composers T_T but it's mainly Jack Wall and Clint Mansell)
    • Suicide Mission
    • Ending Themes of 1 and 3.
      • These were done by The Faunts.
    • Leaving Earth
    • Reflections
    • Wake Up
    • Specter Induction
    • From the Wreckage
  • Kenji Kawai - Ghost in the Shell OSTs
    • Making of a Cyborg
    • The Puppet Master
    • Kugutsuuta ura mite chiru
  • Yoko Kanno (often with Scott Mathews) - Ghost in the Shell: SAC
    • Dear John
    • Lithium Flower
    • Torukia
  • The Eagles - Journey of a Sorcerer
  • Elliot Smith - Between the Bars
  • Hiroyuki Sawano - Shingeki no Kyojin OST
    • Omake Pfadlib
    • Eye Water
  • John Williams - Star Wars OSTs
    • Binary Sunset 
    • Across the Universe
  • Lorde - Hunger Games: Catching Fire and Mockingjay Part 1 soundtracks
    • Everybody Wants To Rule The World (cover)
    • Yellow Flicker Beat
  • Vangelis - Blade Runner OST
    • Rachel's Song
    • Blush Response
    • Opening 
    • End Credits
  • Woodkid - Run Boy Run
  • Epic Mountain Music
    • War
    • Planet Earth
    • Time
    • Are You Alone?
    • Moons
  • Trocadero - Red vs. Blue OST
    • Another One Down
    • First Wave
  • Coeur de pirate - Ain't No Sunshine (cover)
  • Avengers: Age of Ultron OST - No Strings On Me (cover)
  • Hans Zimmer - Interstellar OST
    • Cornfield Chase
    • S.T.A.Y
    • Coward
    • No Time For Caution
    • Detach 
    • Quantifiable Connection 
    • Where We're Going
  • James Newton Howard - The Hunger Games series OST's
    • Healing Katniss
    • Katniss Afoot
    • Searching for Peeta
    • Let's Start
  • Tom Holkenborg (Junkie XL) - Mad Max: Fury Road OST
    • Survive (Extended)
    • Brothers in Arms
    • My Name is Max
I hope all NaNo participants had fun. And at least we survived this far :P

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving!

Now Playing: Dragon Age: Origins OST - I Am The One (High Fantasy Version)

My first Thanksgiving without a turkey D:

I've been celebrating this holiday ever since I came to America, and this is sadly the first time I won't be having an actual dinner with my family or anyone else. Because of that, I don't really have much to report. I'm still in Tally for a few more days, so I won't be seeing anyone till December happens.

But being in the apartment all alone means I get to blast music and twirl around with my nameless doll in the living room >.>

And take pictures of her next to the window decoration
I did make myself a "special" dinner--in the sense that I bothered to use more than the microwave/frying pan.

This is what I made for today. My "Thanksgiving feast" even though there's nothing actually Thanksgiving-ish about it :P

Bad lighting >_>
I assure you, nothing was over/under cooked,
everything was delicious~

Yeah, it's just chicken, brown rice, and veggies. And brownie for desert,which I didn't eat because I was stuffed and I've been eating brownies for two days straight. 

It doesn't look like much but I thought it was delicious :D And I'm not the only one who isn't eating turkey today. My dad called me earlier while the parade was happening so we could talk for a bit. He said he accidentally grabbed ham instead of turkey a few days ago. So no turkey for my parents and brother on Turkey Day. (And I guess we'll be having Thanksgiving dinner on Christmas to make up for it? Which I don't mind, tbh. I like turkey more than ham.)

I managed to finish the last of my essays. My revised story for creative writing, Ignited, is still on the works, but at least I finished my essay for zombie film a few days ago. I've finished everything else, so I just have some other school stuff to worry about before I get back.

Oh, and I went to a lighthouse with Carla on Sunday. We had nothing to do and she'd rented a car, so we drove out for more than an hour, in a storm, just to go somewhere. It was actually kind of nice. 

Hope everyone's having a great day :D

Monday, November 24, 2014

30 Week Writing Survey - Week 14: Maps and Locations

More short responses >.> It's half because this is stuff I don't really have deep answers for, and half because WRITING CONTINUES. And it is draining. And it hurts. And it makes me cry. And it's awesome.

I mean, I technically won already, but the novel is still there. I have a tonnn of work to do on it, plus outside stuff, like some essays for classes and workshopping and revising my short story this Tuesday for fiction class and I gotta cook tiny Thanksgiving dinner for one or two  and I gotta pack and prepare for the end of the semester and these are my last few weeks as an eighteen year old and ahhhhhhh.

I may have won NaNoWriMo, but the race goes on >.> Gotta keep running.

QUESTION 14: How do you map out locations, if needed? Do you have any to show us?

I've drawn half-assed maps before, but they always end up sucking o-e I am not an artist. Because of that, I usually just end up emulating from real life locations (in this planet or the next >.> cough, cough) and go from there.

Mapping out entire planets has been a pain the past and present >_> Irkalla was a barren wasteland with the occasional awkwardly constructed forest because handwaved terraforming. It's gotten a bit better, so, I lived and learned?

Uh. And that's kind of it. Sorry, like I said, short answer .>

Saturday, November 22, 2014


Now Playing: Nine Inch Nails - I Would For You.





*Hijacks mic*

I'd like to thank FridayNightWrites, my competitive spirit and jealousy of other people's progress, Dunkin Donuts, the coffee/cream cheese/bagel combo home breakfast I've been living off of for a few weeks now, my past-self for writing as many essays as possible a month in advance, everyone on twitter who had to listen to me gush and squee and brag; I couldn't have done it without you!

Finally, after three (nonconsecutive) years of total failure, I've won NaNoWriMo! And I didn't even scramble to finish like I thought was I going to. I've won more than week in advance! I did it like at 11:50 PM of November 21st, because I reallyyyy wanted to get it done as soon as possible. (Yes, even if that just meant the difference between the 21st and the 22nd. Don't judge meeee.).



DID IT!!!!

I stopped mid sentence. The last 900 words are probably even more nonsensical than the previous 49100 that preceded them because I was eyeing the word count with unblinking eyes as I typed. And of course because the actual typing of the words go faster than Microsoft Word can count them, I had to come to a pause every now and then to see it update. It was difficult up until the 49900--then it was all crashing down on me in the last fifteen minutes.

And then I saw the 50,000 number! I completely lost whatever description I was about to add and just jumped into updating and validating the word count on the website. Then I bragged on twitter. Then I watched the congratulations video and marveled at my certificate.

Yeah, I know, I know, I'm being self indulgent.




Nowwww granted, Vanguard's Exodus is no where near the end. In fact, I wouldn't even call this the middle o-e I'm hoping it will be. Like if this clocks out at exactly 100k words, I am going to be super mega happy.

But I have problems with overwriting in sections (and yet, for some reason, totally underwriting the endings on first drafts) so we'll see how much this gets dragged out.

I just gotta say, I'm loving it so far. And I can't wait to see where it takes me.

But...uh...I think I've written enough for tonight. I'm gonna go have some left-over cookies and then sleeeeep for the next thirty hours.

It's been a rough few weeks, but that WINNER bar of purple on the NaNoWriMo website made it totally worth it.

Thursday, November 20, 2014


Perspective. It's a weird thing. I'm typing this awkwardly, trying not to put too much pressure on my left index finger because I burned it this morning (along with some bacon) and even with the sensory information, it's kind of hard to process. It feels like I haven't slept in days, and granted, I don't think my sleeping schedule's been quite as stable as it should have been, thereby contributing to this...limbo state of awareness.

Last night, I was up until midnight trying to get more words into my NaNoWriMo novel. I'm reaching such an important moment--about to introduce a new character--so of course I'm moving forward slowwwlyyy. It's an uphill crawl.

At around 12:30 I heard sirens, and cherry lights flashed through my window. I went to bed. Then the emergency alert system siren started going, and that creepy monotone voice rang out. I figured there was maybe a fire or something up my street. I didn't get out until I heard my roommate head out to the living room and go check through the windows.

A game of telephone started, through social networks. Someone with a gun, no, someone fired a gun, by the sweet shop, no, by Landis, no, by Strozier library, no, in Strozier library. The emergency alert text message didn't say shit, just to get inside, lock the doors, don't go anywhere.

Signal suddenly went bad in my dorm room. I couldn't get any texts out or even any calls. I considered trying to get a message out on twitter or email--any way to contact my parents and say hey, if you hear any weird news about FSU, don't worry about me, I'm fine.

But my parents don't really have social media accounts, and no one was reporting anything. It took my dad two days to hear about Robin William's passing, so there was no way he or my mom would hear about a gunman at FSU before I got the chance to tell them.

So I went to bed at one something in the morning, set my alarm for ten to have enough time to shower and leave for my afternoon class, and then fell asleep.

I woke up at 8:30 with a dozen phone calls and messages and emails. Because I've bragged about falling asleep at the library and spending nights there writing essays and my own novels, my parents flipped out. I don't know how they found out at seven in the morning when there were barely any reports going around, but once they did, they texted me, called me, left me messages, called the hospital to make sure I wasn't there, called the front desk of my building to send someone up here and knock on the door, checked by blog and twitter.

And I was asleep. I woke up in enough time to call them and tell them I was fine. And to explain my silence.

Thank god I woke up before 10, or they might already have been on a flight heading over here. And then they might just have strangled me if they found me totally unharmed, just confused, and without valid reason behind my inability to answer phone calls.

Sooooo never assume the best, prepare for the worst.

It's been a weird day. My roommate and I woke up at around the same time to hear slightly more detailed news. Social media's been freaking out this entire time, and there's been slapfights with some reporters and some newspapers--but I don't even know, something about ESPN and something about New York Times picking fights. I'm too disoriented to understand.

I got emails from the front desk (dude who knocked on my door and didn't get an answer; he told me to call my mom), from the emergency alert system, an official statement from the university, and from two of my professors (Women in Lit and Zombie Film). My fiction editor even emailed everyone and asked if we want to move tomorrow's meeting to another place, like a cafe outside of school grounds. I know everyone's frightened, but it seems people are also afraid it's going to happen again within 24 hours.

My roommate went to the vigil and they did the chant, but she said it sounded lifeless, and it was so surreal. Her mom apparently kept asking her if she was okay, if she's about to panic, if she thinks she's going to cry.

And we're...okay. We're just okay. Like we've been tranquilized. 

I went grocery shopping since class has been cancelled, and on the way back, the bus passed the library. It's been sealed off by the yellow tape, and there's half a dozen news vans crowding the parking lot and adjacent street.

I'm seeing people in tumblr and twitter talk about how they could have been at the library, how they had to study or write a paper but decided to get food, how everything could have been different.

Yesterday, for my nonfiction class, I workshopped an essay I wrote about the death of a classmate back in senior year of high school. My critique group liked it. They said I did a good job at discussing the conflict between feeling too attached vs. too indifferent at a tragedy that's in your proximity, but not directly affecting you. They liked that it wasn't melodramatic, but still had a somber tone. They told me it would have also been nice to get a closer look at what I was feeling and going through, even if I didn't have any answers to the questions I posed.

Which got me to thinking: how do I react to this? I'm trying to put everything in some kind of perspective. I live down the street from the library, it's the one place I've gone to in the past because it's so serene and safe, my classmates were terrified and hurt by this. Even if only the gunman--so far--was killed, how different could things have gone? Not to mention this is the kind of crazy shit I obsesses and wonder about on a monthly basis. (No, I'm not kidding. I really do go through the occasional paranoid "what if?" scenarios). And now it's happened. And I'm safe, but others weren't. do I react?

I have no clue.

I still feel a few degrees separated from it, as I did back in 2012 when the other thing happened at my high school. I'm just not sure what I'm suppose to be doing or thinking. I kind of hate that I worried my parents so much, but at the same time, it's nice to see all the people that care. I got messages from Ren, Maria Gabriella, Emzy, and my brother, and this kind of hilarious twitter exchange between Giselle and me:

It might hit me later. Maybe I should go to another vigil. Or have Carla over, since she was suppose to be working the morning shift at the library today.  She's okay, but she'll want to talk.

I don't really know what to do.

But I hope you're safe, sound, and happy.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014


EDIT: :( I wrote this post back during happy times. Then the 100 went through the same problems that Lizzie Bennet Diaries did--the creators and writers don't know how to properly interact with their fans and have often a crippling case of creator's pet. To the point of getting into Tumblr arguments with their fans.

Original post:

Of course I get into a show just as my semester and NaNoWriMo are coming to an end, therefore slamming me with so much work I start sinking under the pressure.

But it's that same burst of energy I felt when I was watching Attack on Titan for the first time--that hope and longing that I would one day write something of that scale, rich in its sense of mythology and atmosphere. Watching The 100, it's back to wishing, this time that I had that masterful grasp at developing individuals, making them complex but fully realized, and different, and and and

Just making a million people squeal and scream and yelp when stuff like a hug happens because there's just so much investment and character development and JUST

You can't
my shipping

^ This will only happen again if Korrasami becomes canon. 

I keep seeing people dismiss The 100. They can all go jump off a cliff >_> I'll push them.

Uh. Anyways...

I'm 40k words into Vanguard's Exodus. And of course, a bomb went off, so I had to pause, if only for a second.

It's tradition.

Monday, November 17, 2014

30 Week Writing Survey - Week 13: Culture

Now Playing: Trocadero - Another One Down

So good news: I got into the workshop I wanted. Which means two things: I don't have to take a scary 9:30 p.m class and don't have to deal with a fiction professor who sent out the worst acceptance letter in existence.

And I was hesitant to write something like that, but I'm not going to mention any names or really go into it too much. I was just really angry at the idea that I needed to get "the warning" so preemptively. The usual "oh silly genre fiction writer, you can write your childish stories in my great workshop class, just please try and play with the big kids."

Oh, yeah. That warning happens almost every semester--this present one being the exception, though I still got a slightly mild variation. And it'd be one thing if it'd been a direct criticism of the story I sent the professor. But the way it was phrased, it was more like she immediately assumed I'm not a character-driven writer because I write speculative fiction. There was no mention of my story in her acceptance email, no mention of what she thought or even a response to what I'd written in the application. And what's more jarring is that I wrote, on said application, that I want to focus on characters and get better in that aspect.

And still, it's like she completely ignored it and decided to act otherwise. (Her email pretty much said that she thought I didn't care about character driven narratives even though I explicitly wrote that I did). And she insulted me nonetheless. (But still accept me for her workshop. Why? Who knows. If she liked my writing, it sure as hell didn't come across in her email).

Can you tell I'm bitter?

SO yeah >_> I'm quite glad to have gotten out of it by being accepted to the other workshop. Which has a good reputation, apparently.

Before a meeting with the Kudzu Magazine peps, I spoke with my fiction editor and another girl about the other professor that accepted me and how her class might be, since they've both taken her before. They told me she's probably the best fiction professor in the entire department. So it's no wonder her class is so difficult to get into. Next semester is going to be awesome :D

In other news, I also started watching this show called The 100, since it was on Netflix. It has a kind of mediocre first episode, but I'm soooo glad I stuck around. I'll have some homework to do this week, but after I'm done, I can get back to winning NaNo and binge watching my show. And then it'll be Winter Break :D

But that's it for updates. Now, challenge time. Short answer today, since I have a lot of work to do. 

QUESTION 13: What's your favorite culture to write, fictional or not? 


Okay, that's a dumb answer >.>

Yet it's the truth. I like the idea of exploring different cultures or using them as inspiration for my writing. I guess Norse mythology and cultural is the one that's come up the most--a record breaking two times--as inspiration for Anne's story and some of the naming and ideas for the current NaNoWriMo novel.

But it's certainly not the only one I ever want to delve into. I want influences from all over the world.

Monday, November 10, 2014

30 Week Writing Survey - Week 12: Worldbuilding

Now Playing: Epic Mountain Music - Are You Alone?

Starting second week of NaNo...not too bad so far >.> But we'll see how much the world wants to throw at me.

In fact, this is danger week. In the past, I've given up on NaNoWriMo at like, the 12th or 13th day. I can't let that happen this time >_<

But hey, on Saturday, THIS HAPPENED:

Aww to the Yeah >:D Probably almost gave myself carpal tunnel for writing like a maniac for three days straight, but @FridayNightWrites aka #WriteClub was having a NaNoWriMo writing marathon and I just had to join in and reach my goal. (I even won a free ebook for participating!)

So with barely just the first week, I got to 25k >.> Will it take another week to get to 50k, or maybe a bit longer?

Will I even win at all?

We'll see, we'll see. But till then...

QUESTION 12: In what story did you feel you did the best job of worldbuilding? Any side-notes on it you'd like to share?

I have no idea which story has the best world building. Hopefully my most recent one.

Earlier fantasy stuff had some thought put into it. The Night Kingdom's gotten a lot more complicated as the years have passed, even if the basic Witches vs. Human conflict remains the same. Similarly, I planned out sooo much in Anne's story; I filled out almost an entire notebook on the mythologies, the different ways each nation and people approached the gods, the pirates, the dragon and phoenix, how things tied into the beliefs, music, cuisine, fashion, etc. These two worlds were different in that, there's always some speculation that the deities in The Night Kingdom aren't real, so it makes testing the faith of some of my protagonist a lot more interesting. In contrast, in Anne's world, there's no doubt of the deities' existence. What changes, as I said, are the ways the different cultures interpret them. Anne's is the only culture that believes the Brothers are against each other and that the sea and the earth must be separated--which makes her longing to explore the ocean a bit difficult. In contrast, Hali's people believe in the partnership of the Brothers, and the unification of the ocean and the land, so he had no problems venturing into the water world of Vatnetinn.

Shamelessly, in the past, my sci-fi has had a lot less planning done. The original Redemption has a super boring, long prologue trying to explain how the world went all post-apocalyptic on us (and, as it was written by a thirteen year old, has a ton of simplified speculations about the outcome of certain geopolitical conflicts). In Ataraxia, there wasn't much explanation as to what led to the establishment of Irkalla. I mostly did it because I was enamored by the usual Prison Planet trope of sci-fi, and I didn't really care about the before, just the during with hints of the after.

Maybe this has all changed with Vanguard's Exodus >.> Planning has been difficult, but it's what I had to force myself to do. I don't want my characters to be so disconnected from their environments, as that's been a huge problem of mine in the past.

Hopefully it's the best world building I've had so far. We'll see if it stands >_> I even did the silly thing of drawing out the Valkyrie so I'd know what rooms are where, and how everyone's moving around. (The gravity manipulator messes with my head >->)

Now of course, the science in VE won't be great, because I'm not super knowledge, I don't have a consultant from NASA to help me out, and I'm not Larry Niven >_> So...I'm probably gonna get a lot wrong. But I hope the writing holds up, and that the world is at least believable enough without having to be perfectly realistic.

I don't really have any tips o-e Fill out sticky notes and hope for the best? Google is your friend? Yeh.

Thursday, November 6, 2014


(TW: Discussion of assault)

When I was about seven years old, back in my old home in Ecuador on some random unimportant night, I entered this mild state of panic at...something. I was afraid of something. Terrified, even. I was shacking, blabbering, worrying the shit out of my parents. When my mom asked me what was wrong, I told her I was afraid. When she asked me what I was afraid of, I told her something vague, like, "the world."

I don't know why I remember that with such clarity. I said it when I was in my brother's room, by the bunk beds, suddenly so afraid for us both.

I've survived a couple of weird things, like most people I suppose. Guys have followed me in cars, older men have followed me in broad daylight trying to get me to speak with them or saying disgusting things at me. I've encountered drunks on the streets and one pair of manipulating older ladies with questionable motives since I was, like, I dunno, six. It's been a while. And I'm not getting any good at it.

I'm impressionable. Always have been. When I was really young, I saw this news report about the sexual predators in Galapagos. It was graphic--they showed the pictures one of the pedophiles had taken of the underage girls (who were anywhere from five to eleven years old) with the private parts and faces blurred, but with almost nothing else implied. You could see the poses he'd forced them into and the things he'd made them do. I cried for about a week after watching that, afraid for the girls, and afraid for me.

In my first apartment here in America, my neighbor was almost assaulted by completely naked, deranged man when entering the elevator. She called the complex security and got nothing; they told her to go home, don't worry about it. Hysterical and infuriated, she called the police, called her husband, and yelled up a storm till everyone on my building went out to speak with her. I was with my brother and a friend (also another neighbor) when we went outside and saw the police had arrived. I heard details of what had happened and immediately started panicking, shaking, crying. The police officer thought something had happened to me because I was reacting so violently. It took them a moment to convince them I hadn't been attacked nor seen the assault; I was just scared.

I've read about serial killers since I was about eleven. I've memorized the ways in which they lured their victims, how they killed them, and how many times people had the chance to intervene and save a life or two just to have it ultimately end in tragedy.

I've read about mysterious disappearances since then too, sometimes lying awake at night and wondering about the girls who left a friend's house at eight at night and then were never seen again. I try and imagine being in their shoes--what it might mean to just vanish.

Some girl in my university was almost attacked last night. She was just walking around, mind you, at a reasonable time (even if it was dark). She trusted her instincts, fled, managed to escape the man that pursued her. But who knows what could have happened?

(I'm not the fastest runner.)

I don't know what my relationship with fear is, or what in general my flight vs. fight response will do when needed.

I am always worried about something. Afraid of something. Uneasy or confused about a thing or two. Disappointed in someone. Alienated because of X, Y, and Z.

It's nigh impossible to try and talk about it with people because it's always dismissive. Always. Or someone laughs because I've painted in a weirdly comedic or carefree light. Or they just switch the conversation because they don't care. Or I don't know how to get my feelings across even if I'm dying to get them out.

So it's not the kind of thing I can vent about because just as easily as it's brought up, it's just as easily waved off, ignored, or just generally treated as a "shrugs, sucks." But I feel afraid so much of the time, triggered by something or another. Afraid or angry or alone.

I got a reaction out of someone one time. It was last, last summer, when I asked my brother to walk to Publix with me. I'd literally just returned from a trip there, and completely forgotten to buy something. But on my way there, two things had happened, preventing me from feeling safe on a sunny weekday morning: a) someone from a car had yelled something obscene at me while speeding down the road and b) some construction worker by the bakery had catcalled me as I crossed the parking lot. There was no way I was walking back alone.

I didn't tell my brother this, of course. I asked him to accompany me and he said no because the walk was tediously far(ish), exhausting, and it was too hot. And then I just...lost it. I started crying, screaming that he didn't care what happened to me, that I was just going to have to deal with it on my own, all kinds of bullshit. As soon as he understood, he managed to calm me down long enough to alter his answer. Of course he'd come with me and keep an eye on me. But how was he suppose to know that I'd been harassed while walking there? I hadn't told him and he's not a mind reader.

In many ways, it was kind of dumb of me not to explain my reason behind needing some company. But on the other, well, dismissal, dismissal, dismissal. From men, women, friends, family, acquaintances, etc. I guess my parents don't do it because they'll always be concerned for my safety, but they skirt that victim blaming line sometimes. The "don't walk alone at night or you will get attacked."

I'm not very brave. But I'm also a writer, so I'm going to connect this to my novels because yolo:

I'm about 15k words into the NaNoWriMo project. I haven't yet passed the danger zone--if I can survive and push through next week, it might mean good news. But Ataraxia and Anne's story failed near the end of the second week, as the third was starting. So that can still happen this time around. I won't let my guard down.

But so far so good. And it's strange in the sense that I'm finally writing Amber Jackson. She came into my head about five years ago. I could see her, I could feel what she felt, but I couldn't hear her.

She's not like Lilith, who came in screaming at me with a grenade in her hand. With Amber, she is and always has been relatively silent, but never unknowable or undecipherable. I understand Amber--all of her emotions and wants and needs and fears without her once having to say a single word to me.

She's brave, of course. She's a soldier. Her ruthless exterior is almost like Hitomi's, but icy cold rather than a self-contained inferno.

I'm about to write the bravest, physically strongest, most intimating protagonist since Redemption happened. Am I trying to find something there? Am I trying to learn from her? Is it just to distract myself from who I am?

I don't know; that all seems too easy.

Though I'm not as brave or as in control of my emotions, I sure am better at identifying them--mine's and her's. I know what Amber's feeling before she really understands it herself. And I know what I feel, I understand what I'm going through. It's too bad I don't know how to actively deal with them.

Amber's about to wake up. I left her, mid-sentence, just as they were being pulled out of cryo. It didn't feel right to keep writing without pausing for a moment and just...reflecting on all that's to come.

I keep rereading the crime bulletin and thinking about the girl. I wonder how she's dealing with it. Maybe she's still shaking. Maybe it barely even matters anymore.

I don't know. I'm rambling. But then again, that's what this blog is for.

Monday, November 3, 2014

30 Week Writing Survey - Week 11: Least and Most Favorite Character

Now Playing: Smashing Pumpkins - The End Is The Beginning Is The End


I better win this year Dx. Three year losing streak? NO THANK YOU. So pumped D:<

But despite the stress of NaNo and school being a meany, I shall continue the weekly blog survey!

QUESTION 11: Who is your favorite character to write? Least favorite?

I thought I'd include a villain here, but realized I was reading the question wrong. I dislike some of my antagonists, even though I try to see where they're coming from so I can write them as complex individuals rather than 2D baddies. But they're not difficult to write. So with that said, I thought about the question a bit more. I put a beloved heroine of mine on the chopping block since technically, I loved and hated writing her.

First, my favorite:

Dream. She might always get top spot. She's such an odd little girl--well, teenager now--sometimes so incapable of understanding social cues or assessing danger, and she's so fearless in such an innocent way. I've watched her grow and face her mistakes and flawed views. She can be nonsensical and absolutely silly. She wouldn't be a good character to read about with a mainstream audience. Her actions or words would get a response of "why's she doing that?" "what does that even mean?" This happened sometimes in the RPs--she ended up getting the nickname Riddle Girl because of it.

But her riddles were always consistent, and her way of speaking has evolved. And I've never found myself questioning why she said things or acted in a certain way. Nothing was ever OOC, even in her most chaotic states. Granted, I'm saying this from a purely biased standpoint. As her creator, I'm inclined to understand her quite easily. Writing her was almost always an organic process. I never had to over think anything, and she always found a way to surprise me, intrigue me, or delight me. She's most of the reason the novella, Enkindled With Chains, is some of my best written work.

Plus she angers people in the most amusing ways. On occasion, someone or other will burst out of a room in frustration just to get away from her >.> (looking at you, Clive. Though you sure haven't been the only one).

Least favorite: I loved Hitomi, but she did piss me off on occasion. And her stubborn ways would constantly halt the plot or throw Marcus in a tangent. She had the stupidest arguments at times. I did love how opinionated and blunt she could be, but jeez was her lack of empathy disturbing. It was always practical, granted, as she was mostly a survivor. And she had a strong personal moral code she never broke, plus she was also suffering from massive guilt that caused her to shut down emotionally, so I could at least understand where she was coming from, even if I couldn't agree with her.

But damn could her temper get in the way of things. I think one of the reasons Redemption ended up being so long is because Hitomi's arguments would just go on and on for an eternity. I sort of always knew her path would lead her down better choices and actions, but it was difficult getting there.

Oh well. It was challenging, and a lot of her faults come from my own inexperience at balancing a character's flaws with her more positive traits (and not overwriting >.>). And in the end, I loved Hitomi because she was frustrating, and that frustration sure made things interesting (and sometimes fun).
"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.