Tag Archives: current distractions

Keep On Swimming

Hello that one person who remembered to check my blog! It’s good to see you! What have I been doing since my last post from ages ago? Well, I’ve been following Dory’s advice. I’ve just kept swimming. (I have this sinking feeling I’ve used this reference on this blog before…)

To be more clear, I’ve been doing a lot of things. Chief among them is the more mundane stuff that would be too boring to go into detail. You know. That whole “stay at home mom” thing. Then, more interestingly, I’ve been doing a lot of work for this gaming news site called Cliqist. I’ve mentioned them before, and while I know I linked some articles I did for them on this blog, I don’t think I ever really talked about that in detail. And yes, that is my real name. Anyone who bought the Tributaries e-book would have learned it too, since I had to put my name for the copyright. Surprise! Or is it? I’ve had this blog so long, I forget what I’ve already covered, ha!

Anyway… Basically, I’m trying my hand at game journalism. I know, it seems odd after that whole Gamer Gate mess, but I sort of fell into it considering my interest in actually writing games. Currently I don’t get paid much at all, but I do get paid (small comfort), and I’m starting to generate some contacts in the indie game world, so that’s really cool! At first, working for Cliqist was very much a side thing, but I’ve been taking it more seriously the last few months. Right now there’s two kinds of writers for Cliqist: Contributors and Staff Writers. I signed up to be a Staff Writer, and let me tell you, the level of work between the two classifications is fairly significant. At least, significant enough for me that editing Eikasia’s second book has been much tougher…

But I just want to say that I HAVE been managing it! S’cuse me while I pat myself on the back.

I think the only real bad news is that I don’t see the book getting done in time for Christmas. I mean, it could happen, but I think I’d have to scale back the Cliqist work, and right now I’m unwilling to do that. Maybe in a month or so, I’ll make an editing push and ease up on Cliqist. Still iffy on that one.

Still though, I’ve been making some pretty important headway into editing my next book. I mentioned on Twitter how Eikasia Book 2 had once been edited to second draft, but all that work was lost when the site that was hosting it closed down without warning. That put me right back to square one–working with a scary rough draft. Yikes! But after publishing the newly edited first novel, Tributaries, I realized that I was going to have to radically change the sequel to maintain continuity. Basically, everything on the Eikasia site from Chapter 2 of Book 2 will be completely different. It’s going to be a complete overhaul of the plot and events, with some new characters that weren’t there before. I’m even considering changing the original title, “In Sight, In Mind” to something else (which is why I keep saying “Book 2” all the time!)

At the moment I’m writing completely new material, so the editing process has slowed down as I switch gears to reinvent a pivotal scene from the original draft. It’s scary, but kind of exciting at the same time! I might share something of the new stuff in the near future, so I hope you guys enjoy it. Meanwhile, I think I’d like to resume my book review series this week. I have two finished books that I need to do reviews for, plus one I’m nearly done with, so keep a lookout!

And that’s all I have really. I was thinking of sharing a flow chart I made for Book 2, but I’d have to redact some things to keep some surprises under wraps. Am I a tease? Maybe.

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Tributaries Available for Pre-Orders!

Eikasia "Tributaries" Cover

It’s here! Well…almost. After 6 YEARS of writing, editing, and even monetary investment, Eikasia’s first installment, Tributaries, is available for pre-order at its special limited time price of 2.99!

Want to pre-order? Click here!

This has been one long, crazy road. Since starting Eikasia, I have gotten married, gone through three different jobs, moved across the country and back, graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Creative Writing, and had a baby. In that time I learned so much in terms of different writing techniques, publishing tactics, about author rights, and the power of art for art’s sake. The self-publishing experience has been no less educational for me. For instance, I re-discovered the importance of meta-data, realized how weird ISBNs are, and learned how surprisingly straightforward the copyright process can be. I also had a hiccup with the cover art, of all things. A simple misunderstanding, but one of unfortunate timing. Still, I rolled with it thanks to the help and support of my editor/consultant/ebook designer Vicky, and the suffering patience of my husband.

All of that is behind me now. Tributaries is scheduled for release November 1st. My work is not done, however. Because of the exceptionally close release date, I have to get on top of trying to generate buzz for the story. That essentially means sending out copies to bloggers and review sites. The unfortunate bit is that these people tend to be inundated with these sorts of requests, so while my plan had been to release Tributaries well before Thanksgiving, I can only hope that some kind soul reads my work and drops a review on Goodreads or LibraryThing in time before the frenzy of holiday shopping.

I don’t think that I’m rushing my work out, however. You see, the thing is about being an underground author is that I don’t have the sort of clout or fame as say, Stephen King or J.K. Rowling. There is no frenzy for my books. So why would I delay a chance for people to purchase the work? The coming weeks will be me enacting my simple one-man ad campaign for my story, all the while experimenting with whatever techniques I can employ until then. That is the only reason for the pre-order. So that I can get my bearings, hype the book, and start with my best foot forward. This isn’t something I can afford to drag out or wait on. My reason for waiting is more precaution than necessity.

In truth, I seriously doubt I’ll ever make back even a fraction of what I’ve invested in Eikasia. I have spent so much money in artwork, site hosting, advertising, and editing. If I got a bit of that money back, that’d be great, but that wasn’t the point of this whole thing. I was doing this for reputation economy. (which I talked about last year on this blog)

…Honestly, it’s hard gathering my thoughts together. I’m so excited and my book isn’t even out yet. I’m aware of how silly that sounds, but I can’t stress enough how much I’ve put into writing Eikasia. It means everything to me. If I were to die tomorrow, it would be my second greatest achievement after the birth of my son.

And I’m not done with it! I know some of you reading this are still waiting for me to continue the free serial. You might even wonder if the release of this ebook means the death of the free site. No. That isn’t what it means at all. Don’t you see? You guys are the ones who made this happen! I wouldn’t even be doing this if it weren’t for you all! THANK YOU. Give yourselves a hug on me. If I could meet you in person, I’d hug you and squeeze.

Since I became a mother late February of this year, then graduated a short week later from university, I have found myself unable to continue my serials as I once did. If we’re all honest, the preceding three years had definitely seen a hit in terms of frequency. What I hope the release of this ebook shows is that you guys can have faith in me to keep bringing you great story content to enjoy. Seriously, this ebook is NEW. If you read Tributaries on the website, you owe it to yourself to read the new version. It really is different in many important and noticeable ways.

And I intend to do the same with In Sight, In Mind. With any luck, by the end of 2015! But I can’t do it unless you guys support THIS ebook! All proceeds will go towards editing and design costs for book two. Like the first book, it will feature new scenes, new dialogue, and a much smoother reading experience. I was even considering a more dramatic overhaul to its overall plot (because, let’s face it, book two ain’t perfect.) If you’re still wishing I could continue my serials like before, don’t worry. Soon my life as a full-time mother will be more accommodating to more involved writing projects. For now, editing is about all that I can handle. It’s easy to pick up, easy to put down, and much easier for me to wrap my sleep-deprived-mommy-mind around.

For a limited time until the end of October, Tributaries will be on sale at a special discounted price of $2.99. After that, it goes up to $3.99. If you’re a frugal person, now is the time to purchase the new ebook!

I still can’t believe I made it this far. Thanks again to all you readers, and let’s keep the adventure going!

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The Notebook and HIMYM’s Dobler-Dahmer Theory

Okay…OKAY. So I just started watching The Notebook. I had to pause it JUST to type this because this scene was ridiculous to me:

I mean, I  realize that McAdams character gets her revenge by pantsing Gosling’s character, but this scene immediately made me think of How I Met Your Mother’s Dobler-Dahmer Theory:

For me? The Notebook’s “big romantic gesture” was straight into Dahmer territory.

As hot as Ryan Gosling is, if some guy persistently pestered me, then coerced acceptance through fear, I’d either kick him in the nuts or get the authorities.

Fine, fine. I hate party poopers like the rest of you. I can engage in a bit of suspension of disbelief. This is a romantic film, and we know that these two characters will inevitably get together.

But Rachel McAdams character tells Gosling’s character “NO” pretty clearly several times, and he proceeds to continuously invade her space, then manipulate her through bullshit antics. I guess as an audience we’re supposed to find this “roguish” behavior as charming. Yeah? Well when I was a kid I would’ve thought his persistence was romantic, now I just see it as menacing.

I guess I’ll keep watching this, but this isn’t a great start for what’s supposed to be such a huge cult movie…

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November 2013 Update

So this is super late! I was supposed to post this here but I forgot. I talk about school a lot and the fact that I’m close to graduating my degree program. (Among other things)

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Dreams Quantified


So while all of you are wondering where the HELL I am in terms of writing, here I am, fantasizing about someday working for Quantic Dream. I think I may have mentioned how much a fan I am of Heavy Rain, and if I haven’t, then I am now. Heavy Rain was a formative experience for me. It showed me that not only could a game be engaging, like Super Mario World, or have a great sense of story, like The Longest Journey, but it was an epic marriage between the cinematic and video games.

One thing I have learned so far in my Creative Writing course at Full Sail is that video games is like the new frontier for storytelling. Its interactive format creates a new experience where a person is not passively experiencing a media source by themselves, but actively experiencing a form of media with someone else. Think about it. When watching a movie, do you really engage with the person next to you? (apart from when you’re talking through it—which doesn’t really count) So, in effect, I really, really, really want to write for video games…at least for some time in my (hopefully) professional writing career. And if I could choose a developer to work for?

QUANTIC DREAM.

Their newest game, BEYOND: Two Souls, slated for release in 2013, stars Ellen Page. And oh my gosh you guys…every time I watch the trailer (which is fairly often) I cum a little in my pants. I’m beyond excited for its release. That’s really all I had to say in this post…

But I also recognize my absolute lack of updates, so I’m posting a chapter preview for Eikasia. I’m not posting all 735 words I have (big whoop) but hopefully you guys will believe me when I say I’m trying. Work and school has been taking turns kicking my ass.

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Inklewriter – Choose Your Own Adventure…and Write Your Own Too!

http://writer.inklestudios.com/

I came across this site after exploring a way to write a “choose your own adventure story” without wanting to rip my hair out. It all started after playing a CYOA called Zombie Exodus, which you can try for free on your Android phone. I don’t know if it’s available on iOS, but you can get the game on Google Play—first two chapters (which are quite meaty and have tons of replay value) are free. Third chapter onwards is just $0.99 to play. Great deal right? The writing is pretty good too.

Anyway, back to Inklewriter: So after getting inspired by Zombie Exodus, I came across this site which essentially serves as an HTML5 app for those wishing to write their own CYOAs. I’m starting one at the moment titled, “Wolf Skin.” I’ll just let you guess at the subject matter. If I ever get something concrete going (there are just so many story paths, omg!) then I’ll post a link here. Until then, you can check out the site yourself and maybe even write your own interactive tale. 🙂

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Return to Cali

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BZp-naU1SBo%5D

I recorded my arrival into SFO two days ago after nearly 8 hours traveling. I was elated to see my parents and best friend waiting for me. Aprilfish, aka Emily, had the best reaction in the world! 😀

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Crunch Time!

So this week is my last week for Fall Semester.  I have ten pages of writing due, and a math test to prepare for.  This weekend was a bit hectic, but not in the way I meant it to be.  It’s my own fault, really–but that’s why I’ve been away from my computer since Friday morning.  I’m working on Chapter 13.2 (it’s at 3656 words so far) and as soon as it’s done, it’ll be up.  I know it’s been a while since I’ve done a chapter preview, but I’m not sure what I can offer up this time around.  It all feels likely to be chopped off, depending on the direction I decide to take.

But hey, I see that we have some reviews up on WebFictionGuide.com!  So far the word count is up to 4000 for the December 14th bonus update. (Quick note: I’m not saying that the bonus will be posted that day–that’s just when the poll ends)

As I said before, end of the year madness–it really sets in around this time.  After the holidays though, I should be better about updating right on Fridays.

You’ll be hearing from me again soon!  Thanks for your patience, as always.

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Ghastly.

Please forgive my tardiness! Chapter 11.4 is now available for your reading pleasure.

I would’ve done something particularly special for Halloween, but I didn’t think to until…well, just now. I won’t have time to slap some special update together, unfortunately. I’ve been going through some weird situations, and I can’t say it’s all been bad–some of it has been very good. But it’s also been draining on my (already) stretched energy. Luckily, my distraction did not prevent me from updating this week, even if the update was a tad shorter than usual. (and with a great deal more mistakes–to be cleaned up later, but I’ll just leave you guys the opportunity for bonus points. 😛 )

Y’know, Eikasia has been up for a little more than a year now. I should have recorded the exact date I started it, but unfortunately, I did not. I know it was some time in September (not counting the month of planning before hand). I feel like I can come up with concrete storytelling on command without having to bleed my fingers to do it, thanks to this project. It’s been a pleasure to write, and I look forward to doing much more!

Now if you’ll pardon my sudden segue–I’d like to bring you all some weblit news.  A.M. Harte, author of Above Ground, is hosting the second round of her search term writing challenge.  It looks quite fun, and I think I’ll be participating–though you won’t know who I am as participants will remain anonymous during voting week.  So if you think you’d like to give it a shot, be sure to have your submission ready by midnight November 8th GMT!

So for tonight I dress up as a detective from the 40’s. Just like the Untouchables. Yes, I’m doing drag–to my mother’s horror. Despite my recent emotional tangle (actually still ongoing), I think I might have some fun tonight. I hope the same for all of you!

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Aj453pIAUEY&hl=en&fs=1&%5D

Happy Halloween!

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Ear Smash, Mind Crash

EDIT: Took out the embedded playlist because it kept auto-playing even though it wasn’t supposed to. (argh)  If you’re a curious birdie, you can see what I’m blabbing about in the link below.

Ear Smash, Mind Crash

If you followed my tweets, you would know that I was rifling through my back issues of Spin (a music magazine) and managed to come up with a pretty long list of new songs to listen to (considering I only looked through 2 of 9 magazine issues). I hope you guys don’t think it too obnoxious of me that I want to share my findings. I really adore music–I’m not a musician or anything, and my interest is purely emotional and philosophical as I know nothing of the finer points of being an audiophile. Still, I have this habit of making special playlists, or wannabe albums and compilations. I did it for Eikasia and for my other creative projects, even.

So if you’re new to the site, you’ll likely hear me blab about music quite a bit.

The above playlist is just a compilation, but it’ll likely be cannabalized to make a more focused list of songs. It’s funny, recently I’ve been listening to a lot of heavy metal and alternative rock on my iPod, lots of easy listening on my iTunes, and now there’s this imeem list of hodge podge muzak. Geez, no wonder my narrative voice never sits still in my writing.

Oh but did you think I was going to leave you without any news about Chapter 8.3? Well, it’s coming along gradually. It’s at 2,866 words. Here’s a  sampling of it:

We had returned to the wilderness, where insects made music beneath the bracken fern, and a nighthawk’s glowing eyes blinked at me from the high branches of an old whitebeam tree. I was given a moment, finally apart from my revulsion, to appreciate this beauty. I hadn’t realized how much Gamath had bothered me until I smelled the fresh soil and flowering fauna–heard the rustle of leaves and the shift of grass. For more than a year, the wilderness had been my home. No civilized place would have me.

“…And now,” I couldn’t help but think, “Not even the wild will have me.”

“Feels better doesn’t it?” Elmiryn asked in a low voice. She lead me through the forest with careful steps, and spared me a glance to see if she could find a hint of me in the growing shadows.

Remember, it’s subject to change and all that.

Ah…see how unfocused and silly my posts are when I’m half-awake? Why can’t all my posts be as focused as my “books books books” post? (atleast before it unraveled near the end?)

Here’s my music recommendations if you don’t feel like going through the whole playlist:  all of St. Vincent, all of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Fleet Foxes “White Winter Hymnal”, and if you like unconventional hip-hop, check out Elzhi’s “Guessing Game”, and K’naan’s “ABC’s”.

All right, that’s all I have right now.  Brain shuts off…

NOW.

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