The State of the Writer: 9/24/16

<–The State of the Writer: 9/17/16          The State of the Writer: 10/1/16–>

A weekly post updated every Saturday discussing my current writing projects and where I stand with them.  This will include any and all work(s) in progress (WIP) be they creative writing, essays/analyses, or reviews of any type.

Project: Story
Title:
The Broken Rose
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Type: Fanfiction (FFVII) Novel
Current Word Count: 278,692
Prior Word Count: 278,963
Word Difference: -271
Status: Editing
Progress: 1st Edit of Chapter 5

dream-closet

I really wanted to show the picture I found for Chapter 5’s cover and the subsequent macro I made for it, but I’m still waiting to hear back from the artist on whether it’s okay for me to use it at all.  She has been active on Deviant Art lately so I’m hoping she’ll respond to my message soon.  She’s from Russia; however, I saw her replies were in English.  There’s been a few times where artists are either not active or they don’t have any English on their pages on in their comments.  With the latter I don’t assume they don’t speak the language, but I also don’t assume they do.  I’m not fully fluent in anything other than my native tongue (I’m passable in French), so bilingual speakers or polyglots are high up on my impressed list.

Chapter 5 is what I call a “letter chapter.”  I believe I’ve mentioned this before, but letter chapters are exactly what they say on the tine.  They’re letters that Aeris writes to herself in an effort to reclaim her identity.  Their titles were also almost the name of the entire work.  Before I settled (and it’s still potentially up in the air) on The Broken Rose, I was calling this story Dear Aeris, and it was a an homage to the game Dear Esther, which I absolutely love.  I’m currently embroiled in a wonderful discourse in the comment section of Cheap Boss Attack’s post about it and other weekend gaming activities.  It’s a situation I relish, because no one else I know has played it, and I haven’t had a chance to review it, so there’s been a dearth of opportunities for me to talk about it.  It’s easily in my top ten favorite games so for a while Dear Aeris was the title I went with, but this was in the preliminary stages of writing where I thought there’d be more letters.  Currently there are only two, and the third and final one for the epilogue was scrapped since epilogues (and prologues) are considered extraneous unless absolutely necessary.  The Broken Rose captures the essence of the story more, too, because despite being broken, she’s still a rose, and that’s worth more than any damage or abuse.

The picture (far) above is supposed to give an idea of her closet, and yes, I’m QUITE jealous of such closet space.  I could probably live quite comfortably in such a room.  I wanted her closet to be walk in, and while the above image doesn’t quite capture what’s in my head, it’s still a nice picture to spur the mental image along.  There is definitely a chandelier.  I really do love those.

I did manage to find and make a picture for (the new) Chapter 4, which I never really got to talk about since I did indeed manage to complete a first and second edit on Saturday and Sunday respectively last week.

I used this picture before in my “Full of Grace” slideshow, and it seems to capture the feel of helplessness well, but even within in that there’s a glimmer of hope in the light she’s bathed in. Initially, I felt like I was settling for this image, but the more I looked at it and thought about it from the fore mentioned angle, but more satisfied I was.

Chapter 5 is the point I decided I needed to reach before I started posting this.  I’ve been considering waiting until Chapter 6 since I added a chapter in, and there may be some tweaking between Chapter 5 and Chapter 3, but I’ll attempt to keep my promise.

Quote: I’m trying so hard not to cry and mess up this pretty letter.  It’s fancy paper, cream colored and smooth, and the pen just glides along.   The closet I have goes on forever with all the clothes there are.  It’s more like a room, even bigger than a shack in the depths of the slums.  There are more clothes than I could ever wear in a month or even a year.  They arrived in boxes brought by men, and I cowered upstairs in my room.  My master was speaking with them at the door, and I thought he’d finally sell me.  I know that he’s rich, but I make him no money, and he lets me eat every day.  Then that low voice called my name and I curled into a ball.  Hiding on the far side of the bed with my knees pulled up to my chest.  I was wearing one of his black shirts and it smelled so good like him.  It was strangely comforting even though I was scared of being sold to other men.  My master called my name again, and fear choked me.  I hadn’t answered! 

“Y-Yes, great master?” I said very soft, but his hearing’s perfect like him so he heard.

“Come here and see.  Oh yes, you can’t stand.  May I pick you up?”


Project: Story
Title:
The Threads of Sorrow
Genre: Paranormal Romance/Retold Fairy Tale
Type: Original Short Story
Prior Word Count: 6787
Current Word Count: 6787
Word Difference: 0
Status: Critiques received
Progress: Need to review critiques

Can we say no progress?  Yeah, no progress.  I’ve done nothing with this story.  It’s been a rough few weeks for a variety of reasons, and I’m finding it hard to churn up the heart to work on anything that will be subject for a “gatekeeper’s” approval before it’s deemed worthy.  I’ll get back to it eventually, but I just can’t do it right now.  Even looking at gentle critiques is hard.  I’ve been really stressed with health nonsense getting worse, and I spend too much time on Facebook (which I’m sure you all know is a political shit show), and that’s stressful, too.  I really should limit my time there, but it really is addictive.  Anyway, I hope to get back to this soon.  I really do love this story, and I want to find someone willing to publish it (again).


Project: Essay
Title: Half a Tragedy Is Worse Than Whole
Subject: FFVII Comparative and Meta
Status: Outline/Planning

I haven’t worked on this either, even though it’s one of my “vacation” essays I should’ve tackled during that time.  I sat down to write one day, and there were too many things going on in my head I wanted to talk about to even begin so I figured I’d work on an outline.  That’s still the plan, but I haven’t gotten to it.  Last week was probably the most unproductive week of my life.  I’m going to try to work on the outline today.  If I can get that squared away, I’ll feel more confident about writing since I’ll have a cohesive plan.

The essay idea came about while I was working on The Seventh Is the Darkest or rather I decided to separate this part out.  There are numerous similarities between the narrative of VII and a Greek tragedy, and I knew I’d need another examination to sort that out.


What are you currently working on?  Is it a creative writing project, essay, review, or something else?  Have you just started something new or are you wrapping up a long term project?

<–The State of the Writer: 9/17/16          The State of the Writer: 10/1/16–>

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29 thoughts on “The State of the Writer: 9/24/16

  1. Pingback: The State of the Writer: 9/17/16 | The Shameful Narcissist Speaks

  2. My hype level for Broken Rose has exponentially increased! I can’t wait for the first 5 epic chapters 🙂

    I know you will be able to crush that gatekeeper once you feel up to it. Don’t get me started on “Farce Book” I have an account but rarely log in. I find there’s just too much annoying drama from so called friends and distant relatives lol

    Liked by 1 person

    • I think I should have them up before the end of October definitely! Another blogger friend just asked if I was going to participate in NaNoWriMo this year, and I honestly am not sure. Since I’m in the midst of an editing escapade, I don’t want to cease that, because writing will take up all of my life. Even when I do participate, I never quite follow the rules. 50k words in a month is a tall order when you’re working a 9-5 (as I know you know). It’s around 1666 words a day, and there are just some days where I’m too tired to write. I usually try to set some goal: either write once a day no matter the word count or (like I did last year) get to 30k words. Have you ever participated in it?

      I’ve really been considering axing Facebook ( LOVE your name for it. It’s so accurate) or at least significantly cutting back, because I honestly feel like it’s been more of a negative experience than a positive, but almost like a bad relationship, I keep crawling back on the off chance I’ll find something that speaks to me. Most of the time I’ll share or say something and get no response or an attack whereas on WP there’s a TON of discourse, and if there’s disagreement, it’s been respectful (so far). I’m not so foolish to think that nothing bad happens on a blogging site, because anywhere there are people you’ll get trolls. I dealt with them more when I wrote for a group blog with my friends. One person was annoyed that I “only” posted Final Fantasy cosplay (which wasn’t true, but it was the brunt of it) when I constantly said that was my favorite, and then another accused me of stealing a picture of another cosplay where I put the source. Picture stuff can be dicey though, but they said that I was posting porn. Um what? No, it was a picture of a Marge Simpson cosplay as more of a pinup, but there was nothing X or even R rated.

      But yeah what makes me sad about FB is I get less response from people I know IRL than I do from people I’ve met through blogging. I also forget that bloggers are generally more thoughtful and involved. Like the friend who posted a meme comparing Cloud to Zidane where he started saying how terrible the latter was. I did a double take because while everyone has different likes in our circle, they’re still respectful and much more introspective than “omg he’s got a monkey’s tail and that makes him stupid.” Granted these are also the “use Phoenix Down on Aeris” people. Gah, too much complaining on my end. The long and short of it is I totally understand and echo your feelings about FB.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I never heard of NaNoWriMo. I probably wouldn’t be very happy if I forced myself to follow a writing schedule. I need to let introverted brain daydream about my world before the words will come. Some days I can write pages, other days only a sentence. I guess it also depends on my mood. During the week I’m also too tired from my technical day job to focus on my story. I let myself go into “creative mode” on the weekends. I consider writing a fun hobby to vent some of my miserable feelings, and I think I’ll actually be sad when I’ve finished my novel thing. Just dreaming about it being good enough to get published is also exciting. I think like my gaming backlog, it’s all about having fun on the journey, without thinking about the ominous conclusion.

        I deactivated my account for several months I got so sick of the silly drama… But I came crawling back like everyone does. I actually feel more comfortable interacting with random strangers on WordPress than people I know IRL on Fakebook, lol.

        Liked by 1 person

        • It’s this contest of sorts that takes place every November. NAtional NOvember WRIting MOnth is where the name comes from! I rarely keep up with the demands of it, because 50k words a month is just too much to do with my day job. I’m happy if I get 3-4k words written a week. I like it because it makes me accountable for something, but there’s just no way in hell I can write a novel in a month.

          Enjoy the writing process, because it’s really the best time of it! You can just write whatever the hell you want without worrying about what’s going to come next. I love my publishing dreams, too. Some of them are downright outlandish lol. I totally agree with you about the journey.

          Ugh Facebook is seriously like an abusive relationship 😦 I’m avoiding it completely tonight because I live in the states and the first debate is happening, and reading comments on political posts is depressing and terrifying/panic inducing. WP is much better for interaction tbh. I think it’s because writers tend to be more introspective, think about things deeper than just a posted meme or article, so you’re more likely to get some good discourse/conversation going. Blogging takes effort whereas Facebook can turn into a popularity contest like that.

          Liked by 1 person

          • I see. Clever name! It does sound quite demanding… I never keep track of word counts and such. I just write stuff down when the words pop in my head. I hate it when I find myself in “writing mode” in the middle of a work day though, lol

            I’m just going to keep on writing for my enjoyment. I’ve realized no one is forcing me to ever show it to anyone. Even if it’s just something for my eyes, I think it’s still worth finishing, after I’ve fully enjoyed the journey of writing it. I’m not a fan of competition and it seems like the whole publishing process is full of that.

            Up here in Canada we pay way too much attention to your elections, haha. Our media is usually bored with our country’s affairs. American politics is far more interesting, and also a bit scary. Another thing that irks me about FB is all the “happy” pictures some people constantly post. To me, it just screams that they are hiding their true sadness, and that in turn makes me sad 😦

            Liked by 1 person

            • I only started keeping track of word counts when I started writing everything on the computer. If I’m handwriting I don’t, because it would be utterly ridiculous counting them lol.

              Writing for your own enjoyment is the best reason of all to write, and I refuse to make it a competition with any other writer, because we all have our own styles, and we could all potentially “win.” I wrote everything I have out there because I honestly wanted to read a story like that, and there weren’t any. Though I can’t lie and say I didn’t also want some validation that I’m a good writer. I can’t help but compare myself to published ones and see if my work is good enough for that. It’s so subjective though.

              Omg that happens to you, too? I’m constantly thinking of dialogue or scenes while I’m at work. It’s why I love the OneNote app because I can just jot down anything that comes to mind. I used to keep a notebook at my desk for just such contingencies.

              Let me just say it…American elections are utter and complete shit shows LOL. I can understand why you’d pay attention to it though, because America tends to have their hands in all the world’s pudding. Like we just don’t mind our business. We’re kind of like that big, blustering jock who shows up at every party, but since we always bring an enormous amount of alcohol, the world puts up with us and even lets us choose what games are going to be played. I have no idea if that’s even a good metaphor, but I’m sure you know what I mean lol.

              Yeeeeep, I know exactly what you’re talking about. People will only post happy couple stuff as if that’s all their lives consist of. It’s the facade or the shadow of success in order to convince the world that you’re successful, but behind closed doors everything is falling apart. I sort of do a mix of cat pics/videos, politics (I can’t help it right now!!!), memes, and drunken and (hopefully) pithy remarks when the mood strikes me..

              Liked by 1 person

              • Oh all the time! I have an app on my phone that I use to jot down the scene that popped into my head, while I was suppose to be working… lol At my job, we have a room to test phones in that is closed off and designed to keep unwanted cell signals out. Whenever I’m testing in there, my mind always wanders off to my story. I have a theory that when the technical side of my brain is busy with work, my creative side gets to wander contently in the background.

                One of your presidential candidates definitely scares me… I’ll leave it at that, lol While that metaphor may be true, it should also be worth noting that you Americans are also the first to jump to the aid of any country that has been hit by a devastating natural disaster. Very admirable 🙂 Nothing is perfect lol

                The internet can never have enough cat pics/videos! Drunk me hasn’t figured out how to log in to Facebook yet, lol I mostly stay silent on FB, and I just leave it open in case someone needs to get in touch with me.

                Liked by 1 person

                • Ack that’s annoying, but understandable. Could you keep a little notebook handy to jot down ideas? If I’m doing anything that’s menial and tedious, my mind will often wander to a scene or some dialogue. Let me tell you how funny it is to be writing potentially sexy time scenes while at work and hoping no one walks behind and sees what I’m putting on my phone, though with my cracked screen I wish them luck in seeing it hehe.

                  You’re right. I’m being a bit self-critical, because I hate how we tend to jump the gun (almost literally), but we will help out anyone who asks, which is good, though of course I’ve heard the mentions of how super nice Canadians are 🙂

                  I have to force myself to close the app sometimes. It’s like a black hole or temporal vortex and suddenly five hours have passed and I’ve gotten nothing done.

                  Speaking of kitties both of mine are sleeping at the foot of my bed as I answer this. They’re only this nice to each other while they’re sleeping.

                  Liked by 1 person

                  • I’ve used paper office supplies for writing purposes on occasion…. I can see that being awkward if a nosy co worker happened to catch you doing that, lol!

                    Cute! My two little furry guys are from the same litter so they get along pretty well. I do have to break up the occasional cat fight over treats. I don’t know what they put in the Temptations brand, but my cats go nuts over them.

                    Liked by 1 person

                    • Thankfully none of my coworkers are too nosy, and that cracked screen is a weird blessing in disguise lol. It’s going to be so odd to me when I finally either get it fixed or get a new phone. I forget that not all screens have that blemish.

                      I actually met someone a few years ago who was the mutual friend of the woman I got my first cat from, and she had a cat from same little. He looked just like my Kin-mei. It was hilarious. I should get a puppy and upset their entire world mwa ha ha ha.

                      Liked by 1 person

                    • One of the perks of my job is that I have a desk full of 40 different phones, and counting. They aren’t really “mine” but I can use them whenever I want. If I were to break my personal phone that I pay for, I would be able to borrow one for a few days. It’s actually kind of fun to choose whatever phone I want play with some days. Everything from Apple to Android.

                      But yeah, we break screens, accidentally of course, all the time. I’ve personally shattered a few on our lab floor, and one supposedly ruggedized one failed my intentional drop test. For my personal phone, I refused to take it out of the box until the almost bulletproof case I ordered from Amazon arrived, lol. They make them so damn fragile these days. It’s good for my job security though 🙂

                      Aw, that’s cute and evil! My cats would definitely hate me if I got a puppy.

                      Liked by 1 person

                    • I remember dropping my Nokia all the time. That thing was indestructible, and remember the Nextels? They were bricks! It’s like we were saying with the video game consoles. They don’t make them like they used to. I bet if I still had my old Nokia from 20 years ago, it would still work today.

                      Liked by 1 person

                    • My manager still has one of those! He just keeps it to scare younger people with how big phones use to be.

                      Stuff was made to last back in the day. I think today’s stuff is designed to wear out faster, so us consumers can buy more stuff to replace it. That’s my conspiracy theory anyway, lol

                      Liked by 1 person

    • I’m actually not sure since I’m in the midst of an editing project! Though I never do it quite like it’s laid out. I just don’t have time to write a 50k word novel in a month. It’s around 1666 words a day, which is quite extensive. I usually set a goal for myself like either writing every day during the 30 days or getting to a lesser number of words. Hm, I could make my goal to submit my short story before the end of the month if I haven’t done that already. I’m actually not prepped to write anything new as of yet or I don’t think I am. Ugh I’m all over the place aren’t I lol. There IS a story I’ve been planning for a while, and I do have notes for it so we’ll have to see.

      How about you?

      Liked by 1 person

      • If I did decide to do it, I wouldn’t being aiming at those high standards either. I started writing a couple of years ago but my grandpa’s death kind of kicked it right out of me. He was the one pushing me to do it and he and my dad bought me a lap top as a present. Which as my aunt points out, pretty much means my grandfather would be kicking my ass for NOT writing lol. I’m going to try to get back into it I think. We’ll see, I’m very non-committal about it lol.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Noooo, those standards are pretty brutal. I was talking to someone on here I think who wrote 150k words in the month. I had to get a shovel to scoop my jaw up off the floor. I think they were either a student or someone who worked from home so they had the time to do so. I was jealous, but not bitterly so. Hey, if you have the time and ability to do that, good for you.

          Oh man the guilt of deceased relatives is the worse. I have my own guilt stories, but no need to be a Debbie Downer or have a sad contest. That kind of shit affects you hard though, so I’m sure he’d understand that missing him is going to have a major affect on your drive to write, and it’ll come back when it comes back so I wouldn’t sweat it. Mine is a lot of “I want to feel validated” and I do have a lot I want to say so there’s that. Plus I’m way better at expressing myself in writing than I am verbally. I always think of something better to say later.

          Liked by 1 person

    • I may have to break my promise! The reason I decided on the first five chapters is because I had/have some notes that might cross over. So some of my notes for Chapter 3 might have been more suited for (the old) Chapter 5 and vice versa. I don’t want to post and then have to make drastic changes. Now Chapter 5 is now Chapter 6 because I added a chapter between 4 and 5. I’m so picky about things, and i want it to live up to my standards, but I’m happy people still seem excited, though I hope people will be able to read it. The first chapter is so brutal and could be very triggering for so many things D: Also I really, really hope the artist for the pic I want to use for Chapter 5 gets back to me. I LOVE the picture, but don’t want to use/manipulate it without her permission. It’s like absolute perfection so I hope it’ll be okay.

      I’m cutting down on coffee! I actually haven’t had any all day today (just earl grey tea), and I’m going to attempt to save coffee for weekends or when I really need it like I’m working late on Thursday and Friday, so that might be a day where it’s necessary.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Please, take all the time you need for editing! We are excited, but it’s more important that you feel it’s ready. That image is haunting, and even though I expect the story to be harrowing, I’m looking forward to Aeriseph goodness. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

        • I’m super excited because the artist who did the picture I want for Chapter 5 got back to me with a yes! Ah, I’ll definitely use it as the image for tomorrow’s State of the Writer post. So happy. I was worried she wouldn’t get back to me, and I’d feel weird using especially on Deviant Art if I didn’t have the creator’s permission.

          I half wish I wasn’t so adamant about planning everything, but I just can’t be haphazard! I’m so absent minded that if I wasn’t meticulous I’d forget some major detail!

          Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: The State of the Writer: 10/1/16 | The Shameful Narcissist Speaks

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