Tuesday, October 17, 2017

A Strange Moment of Inspiration

I spent the weekend preparing for NaNoWriMo, but not so much for my own story. As I've mentioned before, I'm a Municipal Liaison for my local region, and so I was making stuff for our Kick-Off Party. Like plot bunnies. I've been sharing that picture everywhere because it's adorable and I think I'm hilarious.

But, I did accomplish something story-wise. I have continued my trend of finding story inspiration everywhere. Even while performing the most mundane of tasks.

Let me set the scene. It's about 11:45pm, at a gas station that's long since closed up it's little kiosk. There's no one around. I turn off Bullet For My Valentine or whatever I was listening to, leaving me in relative silence. Until my ears perceive the mellow pop song that's playing over the gas station speakers, which at first sounds like the voice of some creepy little child singing in the dark. This momentarily scares the shit out of me, naturally.

This is where I was. This was the mindset I was in. So, when I got out to pump my gas, I noticed that the speaker right above me didn't work. It was just buzzing. And at this deserted gas station in the middle of the night, that was the most sinister god damn thing ever.

Friday, October 13, 2017

Picking Up Strays

I've been thinking about additional characters. What sort of interesting folks are our three heroes going to come across? Will any of them tag along for the ride?

My reason behind this idea? Well, I've been listening to a lot of Fall Out Boy lately, for some reason. And so all these bits and pieces of songs keep popping up in my head and giving me ideas. I'm sure I've mentioned it before, but music is a huge inspiration for me, for writing and otherwise. The inspiration for the current idea? This:
"I don't know where you're going but do you got room for one more troubled soul?
I don't know where I'm going but I don't think I'm coming home"

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Some New Information, Maybe?

I wrote a good deal of a post concerning what I did over the weekend, which was work on my fake language. But once I found myself explaining how various letters were pronounced, I needed to put a stop to that. Suffice it to say, I made up some verbs, but for some reason pronouns are really hard.

I'm not going to spend too much time talking about that, since I'm not even sure if it's going to be used right now. I have a vague idea about a post-apocalyptic dimension where the inhabitants speak this language, but I don't know at this point. They won't be able to say much at the moment anyway, since they don't have any nouns. It's all just, "I want. You go."

Friday, October 6, 2017

The Return of Steve (and Other Stories)

The weird things that are going to be encountered in this story just randomly appear in my head, with no rhyme or reason. I carry a little notebook around with me for that very reason. I literally stopped in the middle of what I was doing at work to write the following very important note:

El Stevo - worshipped as a god.

Every story needs a Steve, you know. And as I was wondering if Tony who gets himself killed was going to be the new Steve, I had the above thought. I'm not certain what it means. I'd like to think that there's some town somewhere, in a little pocket of oddness, where this is happening. There's just this guy, named Steve, who tastes the rainbow, who puts foil in the microwave, who doesn't read the warning labels. And for some reason, he's worshipped as a god. Does Steve know about his divinity? I don't know. I guess we'll find out.

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Weirdness: Now Pocket-Sized

I think the real question about the journey story that we need to answer is just how many L's "traveller" has. Spell check tells me it should only have one, but I'm defiant to the end. It's my understanding that that's the British spelling. I think it looks better. I've spelled it that way since I read H.G. Wells' The Time Machine in 12th grade. Originally only in the context of time travelling, but now in all instances.

I guess I just want to warn you. If I write this story, and share any excerpts, I don't want you getting all upset that I'm spelling "traveller" wrong. I know what I'm doing.

Friday, September 29, 2017

Travelling Through Places Unknown

I want to write a journey story. We've been over this. And the more I think about it, the more I think it's going to be an Oz/Wonderland sort of deal. That is, where someone from our regular boring old world finds themselves in another, far more interesting world.

But will they stay there?

In those kinds of tales, typically the goal is to get back home, because they're stuck on the other side. But that needn't be the case.

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

An Unexplained Journey

Journeys. Someone's going somewhere. But what really matters, the destination, or how they get there?

Back in high school, when I was in Drama, we had a group project to write a short script in which "Someone is going somewhere." That was the only guideline. Just think of all the possibilities! All the journeys that could be taken! Our "someone" was a malicious old lady named Edna. And well, she was going to Hell.

Not exactly high art, but journeys come in all shapes and sizes.

More familiar, and probably more impressive, is the Hero's Journey. Your hero starts in their normal world as a moisture farmboy, or Shire resident, or kid in a cupboard. Then they get drawn into some adventure, meet a mentor figure, go through some trials and tribulation, and then return a changed and possibly better person.

Friday, September 22, 2017

Making Up Words

So this post is up late. I didn't have time to write it before. But here it is now.

What I've been thinking about lately, and may have nothing to do with my NaNo project, are conlangs. Constructed languages. That's your Klingon, your Dothraki, your Trigedasleng.

I'd like to create a language sometime, for a story. I think it would be fun. And in a situation like that, you don’t really need a whole language. Just enough of one to say what you want to say and make it feel like there's a whole language hiding under there.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

This Is the Road to Ruin and We’re Starting at the End

Well, if you missed the last post, I've moved on from the space story for now because I didn't like where it was headed. I might come back to it later, when I figure out how to make it not suck.

So for the moment, I'm left with trying to figure out what to write for NaNo. I have a few random ideas floating around, but nothing I can expand into 50,000 words. I'd like to actually create an outline for this one, so know more or less how the story goes, and what needs to happen when.

Half the time, I start a story and then can’t figure out how it's supposed to end. So right now I'm toying with the idea of figuring out the ending first, and working my way backwards. That might be interesting. First figure out where the characters end up, then work out how they got there.

Friday, September 15, 2017

Moving On

I was going to write this post about another little thing I realized about my villain, but I'm not going to do that, because it's not terribly exciting. So here's where I'm at. I've created this very dramatic relationship between these two characters, which is going to make for a very dramatic story. And also a very boring story. They say you should write the kind of books you want to read. I wouldn't want to read this. It's a domestic drama set in space. It's not fun. I want to write something fun.

"So make it fun," you might say.

That would be the ideal, but sometimes stories go into a tailspin of mediocrity and it's hard for me to pull them out of it. They just get worse and worse until they crash in an explosion of disappointment and I shove them in a drawer. Sometimes my attempts at writing better just makes the result worse. Of course, it's also possible that I've just learned more, so now I can see how bad it is, but the writing itself remains the same.

I don't think I'll be writing the space story for NaNoWriMo. From what I have, my characters are kind of interesting and have some potential, but I can't slog through 50,000 words of the inevitably boring plot right now. I might come back to it later, maybe write a shorter story. Something where I don't need to add chapters of filler just to meet the word goal.

Now, you might say, "But I thought it sounded like a great plot." And maybe it is. If you're into family drama. I want an exciting, fun story with adventures and explosions. But the corner I've plotted myself into precludes that. Now everyone has to deal with their emotions and grief and try to find a way to move forward. It’s super dramatic, and super boring to me.

So now I have a month and a half to figure out something better, something more exciting. Stay tuned, I guess?

I'll see you Tuesday.