Sunday, January 24, 2010

This here universe needs some saving.

And I'm just the geek for the job.

Mass Effect 2 lands Tuesday (or Monday night at midnight). I have three days off work for a gaming binge to rival all binges.

Case of Soda - check.
Meals that can be prepared and eaten in under 5 minutes - check.
Snacks, lots of snacks - check.
Gift card to Gamestop - check.
Pre-ordered Collector's Edition - check.
Two fully charged wireless xBox controllers - check.
50 inch TV with surround sound system - check.
Archon Shepard, Renegade Vanguard level 55 - ready for import

All I have to say is this:


BRING. IT. ON.

On a side note, writing will resume when I've successfully saved the universe (at least twice).



omgomgomgomg I CAN'T WAIT!!!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Breakout Novel Intensive Update

I got my pre-workshop assignments for BONI (Breakout Novel Intensive) yesterday!

/claps hands

There's quite the list of things to do.

1. Print out (in separate documents) and mail in: First fifty pages of the MS; first fifteen pages (depending on scene/chapter break) ; Four copies of the first five pages ; six copies of a 1-2 page synopsis.

2. Read "Writing the Breakout Novel" by Don Maass

3. Go through the manuscript and write one sentence about every scene, each on a separate note card.

4. Write a brief description of your strengths and weaknesses as a writer and your goals for the workshop.


I better get to work! The intensive is in April. I can't wait!

Friday, January 8, 2010

It's on like Donkey Kong.

Survivor Heroes vs Villains starts Feb 11! WOOOOOOOO!


Adding Maass' microtension to PFC

The second semester of my Popular Fiction Class with Pam Binder started up this week, and I found it pretty cool that she was using a Maass' technique from The Fire in Fiction workshop for one of our exercises.

The discussion was an overview about the middle of the novel, and how even when nothing exciting is happening in terms of action, you still need to have tension on the page. Pam had use pull out a page from out novel and try adding tension to every line.

So you tell me. Did I add tension?

Kelder has been sent to kill her sister, Telleo. Grist is her former mentor, and has offered to kill Telleo for Kelder.

Orignal:

“I think I understand.”

Kelder shook her head. “Do you? What pain did you have in your Sun life? You speak only of love lost and your happy family. At least when you left them behind you knew they would be safe.”

Grist shifted behind her, his hand stilling on the top of her head. “My pain was leaving them behind. A Sun life is not an easy one, you know this. Without me, their provider, my family may have starved and died. I left my wife alone, with a newborn child. And I’ll never know.”

“Better the unknown, than sent to kill them,” Kelder muttered into the furs. “Sand be praised.”

“Yes.” Grist paused. “But you think killing Telleo is protecting her?”

“And letting someone else kill her isn’t?” Kelder sat up, shrugging him away. She turned to give him a hard stare, too tired to hide the pain and tears in her eyes. “If I…if I can just…”

Grist sighed. “The canary wouldn’t have called all this if your sister isn’t truly a soul looker. She is beyond your help.”

“I know that. At least I can see that her death is merciful.”

Grist’s brow creased. “Is your opinion so low of me? You think I would torture your sister if I took your task? That I do this for some pleasure?”

Many Ala’der took great pleasure in maiming and giving soul lookers slow and agonizing deaths for their defilement of the Sand. But not Grist, she did know that. “I didn’t mean--”

Revision with more tension:

“I think I understand.”

Kelder shook her head and sneered. “Do you? What pain did you have in your Sun life? All you talk about was your happy family. At least you know they are safe.”


Grist shifted behind her, his hand stilling on the top of her head, though his fist clenched slightly, his nails tugging at her hair. “My pain was leaving them behind. A Sun life is not an easy one, you know this. I was their provider. For all I know, my family starved and died without me. I left my wife alone with our newborn child. I’ll never know the truth.”

“Better the unknown, than sent to kill them,” Kelder muttered into the furs. “Sand be praised.”

“Yes.” Grist paused, his hand relaxing. “But do you really think killing Telleo yourself is protecting her?”

“And letting someone else kill her isn’t?” Kelder crawled to her feet. Grist tried to stop her, but she shrugged him away. She turned and gave him a hard stare, too tired to hide the pain and tears in her eyes. “If I…if I can just…”

Grist sighed, holding a hand out to her. “The canary wouldn’t have called all this if your sister isn’t truly a soul looker. She is beyond your help.”

“I know.” Kelder swallowed, staring at his extended hand, scarred and calloused from years spent killing. “At least I can see that her death is merciful.”

Grist’s brow creased, his fingers falling out of reach. “You think I would torture your sister if I took your task? That I offer this for some perverse pleasure?”

Many Ala’der took great glee in maiming soul lookers and delivering slow and agonizing deaths in return for their defilement of the Sand. But not Grist, she did know that. She’d seen him kill, many times. It was always swift and mechanical – a necessary evil to him, not a game. “I didn’t mean--”

Do you think the second scene has more tension than the first?

Monday, January 4, 2010

Why, hello there.

I'm back! Hope everyone had a great holiday season. Happy New Year!

Now that vacation and all that jazz has come and gone, time to get down to business.

PFC class is back on for semester two starting Wednesday, and I need to put together a rough draft of my synopsis for Ala'der by then. I have one done, came in just over four pages single spaced. We'll see if I can turn that number into three double spaced pages in two days. Hah!