AROW80 Check-In for January 8, 2014

Well, I posted a nice and long list of goals for this quarter on Monday and I have to admit, I haven’t worked on a blessed one of them in the days since. Which is sad considering that thanks to the weather I got an extra couple days off this week.  But, instead of writing, I spent that time relaxing (okay, napping) and kind of recharging my batteries.  And marathon-watching Rosemary and Thyme and Supernatural on Netflix.

I suppose I could make the case that watching Supernatural is kind of/sort of research for Butchers’ Bill, in the sense of seeing the kinds of tropes I want to play with when it comes to hunting supernaturals.  I already know that my vampire hunters aren’t much like Sam and Dean.  For one thing, they live in a world where the supernaturals in general and vampires in particular have been acknowledged as real for years.  And for another, in their world, vampire hunting is a legitimate career choice.  Not the kind of thing you necessarily want your kids to go into, but it’s a living. Watching Supernatural helps me center my world by making me ask myself questions about it and by letting me listen to my characters’ reactions to it (as admittedly woo as that sounds).

Plus, hey, Sam and Dean are hawt.  Not to mention Billy.  *fans self* Whooo!

It also helps that this is a bit of passive research/brainstorming I can do while I work on other things. And, again, the hawtness of the cast does not hurt.

Actual Writing Goals for this week:  I think for this week, at least until Sunday, I’m going to keep it simple and focus on only two goals.

  1. Defcon: Fade Out:
    1. Keep writing. I finished Chapter Ten and am in the middle of Chapter Eleven and I kind of hate what I’ve written but I’m just going to keep bulling through. I’ve got a feeling that Chapter Eleven will either end up on the cutting room floor or will be incorporated in earlier, but regardless it still needs to be written so I can get it out of my head and onto paper.
    2. Complete character checklists for at least two of my main characters as well as the worldbuilding checklists. One for a human/ape hybrid species and the other for a religious subgroup.  Luckily, I have checklists for all of these! I have checklists for EVERYBODY! AHAHHAHAHAHA!
  2. Reading Story Engineering and Story Physics by Larry Brooks. 

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15 thoughts on “AROW80 Check-In for January 8, 2014

  1. Your characters reactions to a show you’re watching on TV… how very Meta!

    That could be a great blog post. A lot of people interview their characters, and a lot of people review/analyze their favorite TV shows… but you could interview your characters about your favorite TV shows.

    • We’re up to Season 2, episode 7 now. And luckily today the weather is a balmy 25 degrees Fahrenheit! Whoot!

  2. Congrats on getting your ROW80 check-in for this first week posted! You’re a step ahead of me (though I’m hoping to post a little later this afternoon). It does sound like your ‘relaxing’ ties right into your writing, and your plans for the coming week are nicely pared down. May Chapter 11 fizzle right into something terrific!

  3. It’s hard to keep going when you’re sure the stuff you’ve written won’t make it to the final draft, isn’t it? But then, if you don’t keep going, you never get to the final draft. In which case, nothing makes it in. So keep pushing through to the end!

    Say, you mentioned a couple writing books in your goals. Have you started them? And if so, what do you think of them? Do you have any favorite books on writing? See ya ’round the ROW!

    • It is! It feels like wasted effort but I know that it’s not really because even if I go in a completely different direction, I wouldn’t have figured which direction to *go* in if it wasn’t for having written the draft in the first place. Thanks for the encouragement!

      Yup! I got a B&N card for Christmas, so I treated myself. I picked up:
      Story Engineering and Story Physics by Larry Brooks — which I haven’t started yet but am looking forward to.
      Violence: A Writer’s Guide, 2nd Edition by Rory Miller — which I have started and which has turned out to be very helpful. Goes more into the psychology of violence and the mechanics of how confrontations work. I’m considering picking up some of the author’s other works.
      How to Write Alternate History by Grey Wolf — haven’t started this yet; it’s a collection of essays on various aspects of writing alternate histories (duhhh) including developing points of departure (like, what if Luke had joined Vader and ruled the galaxy with him as father and son?).
      The Gun Primer: A Writer’s Guide to Firearm Facts for Fiction by Bruce Jenvey — another small book — apparently it was originally written as a letter — but it looks useful and will join the other books I have on firearms.
      Writing the Other: A Practical Approach by Nisi Shawl and Cynthia Ward — a book about writing people who are of different racial/ethnic/gender/sexual orientation/etc from your own.

      • The Alternate History essay collection sounds very cool! I’ll have to look that one up–thanks for the info!

  4. Sometimes a down day of eye candy and video research is exactly what you need. I still need to watch Hannibal for some scenes in Release, so I totally get the need, Kathy (and your eye candy sounds prettier than mine).

    (BTW, love your list of books… Ideas for my B&N gift cards 😀 )

    • Word. I love the fact that Netflix will let you just watch a season all the way through — though this is also a bad thing when it comes time to go to bed and ‘just one more episode’ turns into ‘oh crap, it’s noon!?’

      Another title I’d recommend is:
      How to Write Conspiracy Fiction by Justin Oldham — pretty much what it says on the tin; the book goes into how to construct the nitty-gritty details behind a conspiracy as well as how to research actual conspiracy theories for fiction purposes.

      • I am WAAYYY too familiar with that “just one more episode scenario (just ask my husband). Gets a bit challenging when it’s my day to drive the kid to school…

        I’ll peek into it. Thanks.

  5. Keep writing…and hopefully you can write WHILE watching TV…
    so glad to have found your blog!! love it. and happy new year from a new follower!

    • I’m working on it! My problem is that I write mostly by hand when I’m at work and I have a hard time making myself switch over to typing at home until the work is done…and for some reason, writing by hand at home almost never occurs to me because — I do not know why….

      Glad you like the blog and thanks for following!

  6. I’m editing while watching Enterprise – I’ve gone through the series, but now I ‘mlistening to intonation, watching expressions, camera angles, paying attention to subplot, shading, foreshadowing, and what’s left unsaid and only hinted at….

    It’s play, and research, and I am not in the least guilty. This is as vital as those days where thousands of sparkling words get written.

    I like your simplified goals. I bet you’ll find the words surging up within you! =)

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