The State of the Writer: 6/17/18

<–The State of the Writer: 6/3/18          The State of the Writer: 7/1/18–>

A biweekly post updated every Sunday discussing my current writing projects and any completed the prior two weeks.

Finished Projects: 5

Project: Story
The Broken Rose
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Type: Fanfiction (FFVII) Novel
Current Word Count: 260,969
Prior Word Count: 261,043
Word Difference: -74
Status: Revising
Progress: Chapter 7 review

What am I doing?  Like seriously.  What am I doing?  I finished up the revisions I said I wanted to do, so what am I doing now?  Well, I’m reading through the remaining beginning chapters just to make sure there’s nothing I missed.  I haven’t done any major edits since Chapter 6.  It’s also not taking me that long to read through them, so as long as I keep up a decent pace with that, I should be back to a posting schedule by next month.

Continue reading

The Lily in the Lake

It’s been too long since I’ve posted a macro so I decided to revive Macro Mondays on a biweekly basis thanks to a conversation I had with Pokeninja who runs the blog Nice Job Breaking It, Hero.  Sometimes doing things weekly is way too much to handle, but biweekly (hopefully) works out well.

I’m also going to try to organize the information on my macros in a better way.  In prior entries I would include the links to the original picture and quotes a bit haphazardly, but I’m going to attempt to take a cue from my State of the Reader posts and put all the information in a nice neat list afterwards.  I’m also going to make sure I caption whatever the quote is below, though my hope is it’s clear on the image.

“Now folds the lily all her sweetness up, And slips into the bosom of the lake.”

I recalled my desire to make this macro while editing Chapter 8 of The Broken Rose. A piece sung by Laura Wright is where this poem is featured.  I  found the quote in the song then discovered by a quick google search that the original verse is by Alfred, Lord Tennyson.

The quote above struck me is strangely reminiscent of Aeris almost to the point of being eerily accurate, and there’s a line before it that creepily aligns with FFVII as well:

“Now slides the silent meteor on,
And leaves a shining furrow…”

Needless to say I’m working on a macro for the above, too, featuring exactly whom you’d think I would 😉

It was impossible to pass up this opportunity for a macro seeing how well the words aligned with the fated flower girl’s plight.  Lilies are not only the blooms she peddled, but arguably stand in as her symbol, as well, considering they’re associated with death.  Aeris is literally folded up and “slipped into the bosom of the lake,” so Tennyson, with absolutely no rational means to have this knowledge still managed to have his poetry reach through the ages and touch this poignancy.

Original Picture Source
Original Quote Source

Disclaimer: Neither the image nor the quote used are mine.  They belong to their respective creators.


My Top 5 Favorite Final Fantasy VII Posts

In honor of it being the 19th anniversary of Final Fantasy VII’s release in North American, I usually have a new essay prepared to publish on this date. Alas that is not the case this year.  I haven’t had time to draft the myriad articles I still want to write, so I must resort to narcissism of the most shameful kind and give you (literally) my top five favorite FFVII posts.  These are the ones I’ve written over the years.  If you’ve already read and enjoyed them, I thank you in advance, and if this if your first time seeing them, I thank you in the future.

5. The Sum of Our Grief

Original Post Date: October 4, 2015

When I started doing macros, I never thought it explode into so many.  Also two years ago I knew absolutely nothing about photo editing and manipulation, so I’ve learned quite a lot from my forays into it.

The Sum of Our Grief2

This is my favorite one out of the three I made (per the link).  Anything with Sephiroth and Lucrecia breaks my heart so I’m just going to move onto…

4.  Full of Grace

Original Post Date: March 4, 2016

The true original post date is actually earlier.  I updated the entry because I updated the video on YouTube.  I’m not sure when I first put this up, but I suspect it was sometime in 2015.

This was my very first slideshow, and so far I’m still pretty proud of it.  I’ve only had time to make three others, and I want to graduate to AMVs soon, but I imagine those will take even more time.

I absolutely adore this song.  It started reminding me of their ship while I was writing Northern Lights, Chapter 14 to be exact.  Now I can’t listen to it without seeing the images I chose and even some I made up for the novel length fanfiction.  The next entry is a more recent work…

3.  The Seventh Is the Darkest

Original Post Date: July 15, 2016

Doctor Who Macro 2

Only a few months old, this essay was a few years in the making.  I always knew VII was dark, but the older I grew and the more I read, the deeper the shadows grew.  I knew I’d have to gather them together in one place (dangerous as that might be) so I could present them to you.  However, there’s another essay that ranks even higher than this…

2.  Heart of Darkness, Angel of Light – The Defense of Sephiroth

Original Post Date: August 5, 2015

Although this essay languished in my brain for over ten years, took me two weeks to write, and cost me numerous tears, I wouldn’t take it back for the world (nope, not even to catch the meteor.  Sorry).  While looking at it a year later, there are some things I might eventually clean up and polish, the core of it is solidly in place.  Though at inception I never planned to not only defend Sephiroth but several people from ASOIAF, an utterly different work, but if in comparison I can offer up other defenses to persuade, I won’t scoff at that.

I refer to this essay quite a bit, and have been pulled into some pretty brutal arguments because of it.  Nevertheless, I continue to find more evidence (possibly because I’m biased towards it.  Hey, I acknowledge it) to support, and I’m trying to foster an attitude that welcomes friendly debate.

1. Northern Lights

Original Post Date: March 27, 2015

Northern Lights Blurb

To date Northern Lights is the best story I’ve ever written.  It was a labor of love and a fantastic learning experience both personally and as a writer.  I wrote it to resolve a grave injustice I know the game (not even the Remake) ever would.  I already talk about NL ad nauseum (and have another Editing Blog post on my day planner to write), so the last thing I’ll say is if my original paranormal romance novel The Serpent’s Tale is every published, it was one, very obviously inspired by the Aeriseph OTP, and two, Northern Lights was written on the template of it.  Therefore if it’s published and if you read it (two huge ifs) don’t think you’ve lost your marbles if you notice that.  It’s not a coincidence.  Sometimes writers have to be lazy or sometimes we just recycle ideas we’ve already thought up.

So there’s my tribute to my favorite story of all time Final Fantasy VII, though it’s not like I’m not constantly writing love letters to it even in posts that aren’t about FFVII.  I try not to let this day pass without saying something about it especially since it invokes triple sevens being SEPTember 7, 1997, which I just mentioned in a comment to one of my lovely blog followers, though I cannot remember which one.

Let me know your favorite character and favorite FFVII song in the comments.  My favorite character is obviously Sephiroth, but Aeris and Vincent are very close for the heroic ones (she’s slightly higher than him).  There are too many songs I love to just pick one.

  • One Winged Angel
  • You Can Hear the Cry of the Planet
  • Aeris’s Theme
  • Tifa’s Theme

I look forward to your replies!

A Few Chapter Covers for The Broken Rose

This is a bit of an impromptu post.  During yesterday’s editing session I finally figured out what picture I was going to use for my Chapter 3 cover.  As with Northern Lights, I intend to use a picture for each chapter in The Broken Rose.  While this can be a daunting task, I still find it a worthwhile visual puzzle for me to solve.  Locating a picture that encompasses the mien of each chapter can be challenging, but I enjoy figuring it out.  I have an easier deal in TBR as NL also had at least one quote for each chapter, but I decided to forgo such words for my latest fanfiction, though I couldn’t let the work not have two at the beginning.

While each chapter title will obviously be indicated in the post, I still decided to incorporate them into the picture itself, an update I’m planning for Northern Lights, too (possibly as soon as my vacation the first two weeks in September).  I made each of these with Pixlr, an invaluable site for macro making and image manipulation.

I’m very thankful to the Deviant Artist for giving me permission to use this.  I may also utilize the image for the overall story and/or the banner I’ll have to created, but I absolutely love it for the opening chapter.

I’m not as fond of how the words look on this one, but I love the picture.  None of these are set in stone, so if something better comes along, I may do a change up.

00 Chapter 3 - Measure

This was the picture that prompted me to make chapter macros.  It is exactly what I was looking for when I realized I wanted to find a measuring tape.  Sometimes it just takes a simple image to get the ball rolling.

I’m hoping I can meet the challenge for the remaining 20 or so chapters, though I’m unsure if I’m going to do another post like this since some of the titles/images might be spoilerific.  I really liked these initial pictures and wanted to share since I was quite happy that I finally figured Chapter 3 out, and I really liked how that and Chapter 1’s macro turned out.

Let me know what you think and I hope you all have a good day!

It Stays With You

More macros are available here for the interested.

One of my pipe dream wishes for the FFVII Remake (which I’m sadly full of ennui about.  Perhaps I’ll make a post about why in the near future) is for a scene like the below to occur.  I know it never will, that’s why it’s a pipe dream, fodder only for fanfiction and art, but if it did indeed happen, rest assured, I’d never stop sobbing.

00 Regret Stays With You

She is clearly the one saying it to him not cruelly, but rather as an affirmation of grief.  You have to face it and accept it before there’s any chance the wounds can heal (which was the point of the latest episode of Steven Universe that I just watched prior to drafting this), though in the case above, there’d be no true healing, but she’d help him bear the scars 😦

Once again Deviant Artist Dark6Nika provides the original picture entitled “A prayer to mother,” and I recently used the same as basis and impetus for the latest post on my Sephiroth fanpage.

FullSizeRender (4)

The macro’s words (the post above is what I myself dredged up) are from The Name of the Wind by one of my favorite authors Patrick Rothfuss, whose works I’ve reviewed here and here.

A brief note about quotes.  I don’t always put the source on the picture as I often think it disturbs the aesthetic.  This is usually the case where the image contains people.  I double checked to ensure I wasn’t just doing this with words not my own, and I wasn’t.  There are several macros with quotes from Northern Lights that I didn’t source on the macro itself.  Because of this, if the macro is shared, I hope that the entirety of the post is as well.  Not so much to give me credit since I neither rendered the image nor wrote the quote (in some cases), but rather to give credit to the original creators.  I merely put two things together, interlocking pieces that I hope others can see well fit.



The Woes of War

In the wake of my completed story, time has finally lent itself to be used in the making of macros.  I’ve been thinking about this one for a while.  The quote “War makes monsters of us all” is from my favorite author George R R Martin, and of course, it comes from his magnum opus A Song of Ice and Fire, the fourth installment, A Feast for Crows. 

062016 War Makes Monsters

I searched about an hour for the perfect picture, though I had this one in mind all along.  The picture source is located here.  I have to thank my tumblr friend synthetic-quantum for finding it for me nearly an instant after I posted it there.

If you are (unlike me) someone who doesn’t expend their time/energy in thinking too deeply about video games (which is a shame since many of them like FFVII have rich stories and all narratives are worthy of discourse) or do and just didn’t consider this, it’s another tragic fact of VII that Sephiroth was most definitely a child soldier, an atrocity that is sadly not limited to fantasy/sci-fi worlds nor is it any less abysmal in our own.  Thus are the words from Feast apt, as war will turn even children into monsters, and in both the story and the above image, only the crows will have cause to rejoice.


Descending Doom

This macro took two tries.  I made one and then realized it was far too wordy, and the words were far too clunky.  This prompted me to change them in the actual story so something good came out of the mess.  But even after the update something wasn’t right.  There were still too many words, so I…cut it down.

Descending Doom 2The lines are spoken by Aeris from my fanfiction Northern Lights Chapter 9 – The Devil You Know, and the picture of course does not belong to me.  I’m nowhere near this talented.  It is a piece by Deviant Artist TORIMORRIS simply entitled “Sephiroth.”

All We Are

FFVII is a story filled with what ifs.  I’ve been thinking more about this lately since I’ve been reading an ASOIAF analysis blog that examines the what ifs of that narrative in every chapter.  For VII, while there may not be quite as many, the ones that are there are just as profound.

Sephiroth has many, many what ifs around him.  What if Lucrecia hadn’t left?  What if she had stayed or at the very least waited until he was old enough to understand that she was his mother before leaving?  What if she had taken him with her?  What if he’d been told the full truth of his origins?   What if he had the full truth of his origins prior to that traumatic discovery of Jenova?  What if his father wasn’t a dickhead aka hadn’t treated him like a specimen/experiment? What if he had retired/resigned before that fateful last mission to Nibelheim?  What if Gast hadn’t been killed?  I could write a myriad essays on these questions alone.

What if he had been given the below words?

All We Are

I have to thank Deviant Artist Dark6Nika again for her gorgeous rendering (which I have used before) whose title is Dear Son.

The words are from Northern Lights, my FFVII fanfiction.  Though they are spoken by Sephiroth and not Lucrecia, I feel they carry a true mother’s resonance.

Mother Is the Name for God

Update: A very kind tumblr user Calamity’s Shattered Son reblogged this macro with the original pictures source.  I updated on tumblr and now I can update it here.


This phrase is the crux of my Defense of Sephiroth essay.  Though the words are spoken in The Crow, the quote is actually attributed to William Makepeace Thackery (at least according to the internet).

I did not realize a ghostly Lucrecia was behind him until I went to make this macro, and that made this picture infinitely sadder and more layered.

Mother is the Name for GodPicture Source

Quote Source – Source is stated above.