Writer’s Fear

I’ve never had writer’s block.  Nope, not even once.  I sit down, usually at a computer, but still, occasionally with pen and paper, and write.

What I do have, is Writer’s Fear.  If several days go by without said ‘sitting down,’ I am afraid that once I do, nothing will happen, that I’ll just sit there.  So what do I do?  Everything else:  clean house, walk the dogs, run for food and booze, get drunk early and watch anime… anything to keep me from facing my fear.

I’d put off writing for five days this week.  I’d a great weekend of several thousand words, even into Monday and Tuesday, I’d figured out Maya’s time-lapse, inadvertently introduced Emma Miller… and did everything I could to not touch Nichole (the laptop I do 99% of my writing on) until this (Saturday) afternoon.  Finally, fearfully, with only one partial scene in mind, I began.  That was four and a half hours ago; 3k works ago.  Chris, Cat, and Anton are in a small armored column on their way to Miramar Air Station, and Maya finally killed someone in San Diego.  It was so easy!  I’m over 60k words, and not even to the Big End… which just makes the Fear worse.

Will I be able to do this tomorrow?  My family’s coming back from vacation, so I should wash our bedding.  The weather’s getting better, and I need to paint the trim of the entire front of the house.  After Mass tomorrow morning, I should stay for Adoration for at least an hour….  I should… I should…

Fear.  It’s a horrible, corrosive disease.

“I must not fear.
Fear is the mind-killer.
Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration.
I will face my fear.
I will permit it to pass over me and through me.
And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path.
Where the fear has gone there will be nothing.
Only I will remain.”

Continue reading “Writer’s Fear”

“Stupid humans.”

I’d just now put those words onto Maya’s lips.  And that’s how I feel:  at 57k words… why not introduce a new character!  Eff me, why not?!  What I needed was a victim to satisfy Maya’s cravings after being held captive by [person] in the machine’s home for one of our weeks, so, thinking about the sacrificial secretary at the start of Elfin Lied (06:41-07:24; subs don’t matter, this is just what I had in mind at the time), I came up with Emma Miller.

“Look at you.” The scowl was there, but Emma hoped it was a spark of mirth she saw in those odd eyes.  “You’re a walking cliché:  blue jeans and blue eyes; blonde hair and an unnecessarily large chest!  All the while knowing nothing about how this world really works!  Bismarck was right!”

All Maya has to do after running into her is grab her and steal her life… but, there’s a CCTV camera; if Gordon’s watching, he’ll know that what she told him about just wanting to meet her brother is a lie, and will alert Chris… so Maya hesitates.  In that moment, Emma starts talking.  I learn she’s a Masters in Computer Engineering, working on her PhD and is a better programmer than anyone at UCSD-SCS.  But, since she’s low-man on the totem pole, she’s the one to bring coffee and donuts.

Until Maya literally runs into her.

And when Maya lets slip that Gordon is self-aware – an impossibility to Emma – the dialog started.  Last I saw, they were on a bench on the north side of Giesel Library eating brats for breakfast.  I couldn’t take it, so I vacuumed two floors of my house and did two loads of laundry.  I’d the hook by the time I got back:  Emma is a friend of Cat’s and has heard the name ‘Chris’ already.  Maya’s already mentioned that, so Emma is running confused. She gets a text from Cat about lunch, and excuses herself from Maya… who can read a lying human like a book.  She follows.

When Can I Kill These People?!?!?  It’s as if I’m fond of them and –

Oh.

Krep.

Sidelined

At long, long last, I’ve my three main characters (Chris, Cat, Maya) in proximity, at UC San Diego.  I also came face-to-face with a problem I’d known, but chose to ignore:  they are almost exactly one week out of synch.

For Chris & Cat, just two weeks have passed; an eventful two weeks!  However, for Maya, it’s closer to three – if not a day or two more.  Once I start editing, I’ll have all my notes and glosses to tally everything up.  But:  a week apart.

Last night, came home from day-job, made coffee (1/2 and 1/2 reg and decaf so I don’t kill myself), added some brandy, and was able to finish C&C’s trip home from the Newman Center and their dinner (just what was Cat alluding to when she whispered her embarrassing desire to Chris?).  After that, I got Maya from the SD airport to the NE side of campus, where the Supercomputing Center (and thus, Gordon) is; what an UGLY building!  Maya uses a bit of future-tech to talk to Gordon – with a cameo by Dorina – and she leaves, hunting for her brother and his intended.

A week out of synch.

I stared and the screen all the way through the second coffee/brandy.  Nothing.  Metaphorically tossed everything into my unconscious mind and descended to the basement to watch some animes with my wife.

Woke up.  Nothing.

Just before lunch, I saw something:  while Maya was in the machine’s home – ‘cyberspace’ if you will – who’s so say the passage of time was 1:1 with ours… especially with that very odd incident with the male figure, whom she couldn’t see, at the end, who called her ‘my daughter’?  What if Gordon had kept the room with the sensorium locked for – oh, I don’t know, let’s say, a week?  That gives me two things:

A solution to my temporal decoherence and a very, very hungry Maya.

Back in the game!

Baton

Over 50k words, he said!  Just another 8-10k to finish the book, he said!

Annnnd then, Dorina showed up.  To quote from Band of Brothers:  “…well, hello 2nd Armored!”

Look, it’s NOT exposition and I AM NOT LECTURING!  I can prove it, below the fold!  These people just keep showing up… this just keeps happening…!

Seriously:  I need to start killing everyone.  No!  I mean it!  Don’t you dare click on Continue reading “Baton”

Milestone and millstones

Today, Saturday, was the semi halfway point between both my girl’s birthdays.  We all, plus my mother-in-law (we sat far apart) went to a nominally Japanese steakhouse.  I bet I spoke more anime-Japanese than the staff.  Still and all, good time, good food.  Eldest Daughter is now Sweet Sixteen.  She said there’s a boy she’s fond of.  I said I have rifles about which I feel the same.  We have one another’s measure.

I’ve broken 50k words.  In and of itself, that means nothing, but recall I was raised on NaNoWriMo’s “50k words in November!” so it kind of sticks.  What’s happening at that word mark is below the fold.  I’d guess another 8-12k to kill everyone, er, wrap things up.  Following that, as I said in a previous post, editing will consist of adding material to make the modules I’ve written, over so much time, link to one another.

Will Deonne in two sentences completely changed how I write horror (it works, now), but I know I still suck at action/fighting.  Anyone have any ideas as I head into the final Act?

Continue reading “Milestone and millstones”

Abuse.

Over the 45k word threshold.  I realize that for the first time, ever, when I go back to edit this, I’ll actually be adding words rather than taking away, as I did for my last two books.

The difference, of course, is time:  T4L and EFL were both written in about 30 days.  As such, transition from scene to scene was clear in my mind.  Now, with CH started on November 1, and it now being March 7, things are a little disjointed.  I’ve been having my wife and kids proof parts of the story, and over the weekend, my wife commented “that  was rather jarring!”  Yeah:  additional editing.

So.  I’ve got Maya in the air.  Her life just keeps getting worse and worse; her willingness to subsume everything to find her brother is breaking what’s left of her stable mind.  It’s going to be a photo-finish as to who wins:  Maya, Hanako, LEGION.

I wish I could save her.

Continue reading “Abuse.”

And… that’s a MRAP!

Sorry:  bad pun about how Chris, Cat, and Anton make their final stage north into the ‘no-go’ zone between San Diego and the LA basin.

From having nothing just over a week ago, I’m pleased with the 14k raw material words for how Chris and Cat fell in love with one another.  I was also able to get a couple of more plates up and spinning for Maya to cast down in the next act.  There was even a little Easter Egg from an unexpected guest appearance!

Below the fold is a some verbal sparring with Chris and Anton; Cat makes a brief appearance in a towel.  After posting this, I’m making coffee – yes, with some bourbon – and will get Maya on her way out of the Vancouver BC Airport.  She’s been cooped up there for three days (I think), waiting for one of the rare flights south.  Not sure if she killed anyone… maybe.  Through her eyes we might see the burnt-out, dead city of Seattle as they fly over.  A few hours after that, Maya will be standing outside the San Diego Airport, just miles from her brother.

I cannot wait to see this!

Continue reading “And… that’s a MRAP!”