Slumber of the Moon • Tale of the Princess | ch. 5

Chapter Five: Waltz of the Lost {Valse de la perdue[1]}

“We’re are we going?”

Veranna had led Iren to the northern end of the palace. Compared to the rest of the place, the hallways were smaller, adorned with stone beasts, whose mismatched beaks, paws, and snake tails were chipped and worn. Less glass hung from the ceilings and even less composed the walls. The endless parade of gold fretwork was overrun by silver; ornate glittering grayness crowned the windows. Frayed curtains hung over these wider windows, which looked out into the forest. A mist hung upon the canopy, filtering sunshine into rainbows.

“Close your eyes. Please?”

She had stopped before an iron door. An engraved trellis grew up the sides, with spiraling branches of roses, lilies, and daisies in consecutive circles on the front. A single silver doorknob lay in the middle.

“It is not dangerous. I promise. I just…I wished to show you this…place.”

“I wasn’t worried about that.” Iren glanced down the hall. “This place is a bit different than the rest, isn’t it?”

“It’s the oldest part of the City.”

“Huh.”

Doing as Veranna asked, Iren closed his eyes. He heard the door creak open, like the joints of an ancient dame. He caught the scent of old paper. Veranna’s light footsteps led further inside and she called to him.

“You can come in now.”

Iren slid a foot forward and opened his eyes.

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Writing Week • story sprinkles [12/18/17-12/25/17]

Originally I was going to use the last two weeks to reminisce about my writing and the odd, disorderly tale it’s been (and continues to be). Until I realized that next Monday is New Year’s Day/1 Jan 2018.

So I paused and thought: what have I done this week, in regards to my writing?

Mostly it’s been little snippet writing, scenes that aren’t about anything specific and some that are. Most inspired by movies I’ve watched recently, others sprung from a desire to write. (As I haven’t really been writing anything all month. At least not with the same singular consistency as I did in November and the months before.)

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Writing Week • NaNo 2017 (11/4/17-11/11/17)

The most prominent writing I did was NaNoWriMo. It’s kind of surreal writing a story that I have (and know) so much backstory about. Like whoa. There’s reasons and stories and such that probably won’t appear explicitly in it, but which have significance to the plot and characters. 

Also, since I’ve been writing a lot by hand, I haven’t posted as much as I’d planned to. The first story (Tale of the Princess) is finished, as of yesterday, and the next two stories should be relatively short. And then I can get on writing the second part. 

I’ll be the first to say that my NaNo story is, perhaps, not the most universal (I’ve never been good with understanding experiences deemed universal for humans), nor the most diverse. But it contains themes and ideas that have, apparently, been congealing inside me for over a decade. (Admittedly, I have other stories and ideas that are much older…)

Some of these include:

  • A fractured being and the consequences; having been fractured and having fractures stitched or impaled onto one’s essence or soul
  • A shining prince and/or hero who saves the world (but doesn’t) and has a sister (but doesn’t), who turns him into his shining self through her love (which she doesn’t); tales that build up blame on a woman for being wicked, as a witch or the prince’s sister or from curiosity or being selfish and vain 
  • The layered accusatory tales against monsters and demons; the difference between belief in the dichotomy of good & evil and creatures whose lifestyles and functions can be coded as “bad” or are incongruent with human life and development; also the difference between creatures that live incongruous to human welfare and controlled self-righteous possession/manipulation 
  • The woman who has suffered forever and lives in unending pain; can she be free? can she be healed? also that she deserves it for being wicked or corrupt

Will all these be equally prominent? Probably not. Do some of these (especially the monsters and demons) appear in nearly everything I write. Oh, yes!

Best wishes and writing!

Writing Week • 10/8/17 — 10/14/17

This was a much better week.

Let’s see…

I delimited the contours of story variants. I’m not sure how to explain this other than…having a multitude of ideas all crammed together and having to sift them apart. 

I reflected back on my earliest writing that featured any content related to my demons. Re-reading that (along with reading LotR currently) has reminded me of where part of the impetus of my demons, as a created species, arose from. 

I also realized (or remembered) that the initial emotional crux wasn’t only related to the Moon. Which explains why the story was ordered the way it was in my first draft. I also will have to delete a huge hunch of material, because 1. It doesn’t fit historically, and 2. I felt it put too much of the conflict’s weight on the gods rather than the demons and that’s been a sore spot on me for awhile. 

I continue to work my way through the Nights of Heroes 100+ character compilation, finalizing names, years of birth, and rudimentary backstory.

I feel like I’m forgetting something, but this will have to do. I hope for one of these recaps’ I’ll be able to dig in a little more about what I’m talking about. More details and more personal reflection. Or maybe I should pick a stand out point and focus on that. That’s an idea. I’ll see how I feel about it.

Best wishes and writing!

Writerly Notions: Stress & Focus

This morning I spent a few hours calibrating and analyzing what causes me stress and my stress levels. Or more specially “needling things that send me into a mental whirlwind panic/confusion.”

I won’t go into the details. Suffice to say, the categories of Creator, Writer, and Promotion feed off one another to create the highest levels of stress and the highest amount of stress. Additionally, as with this blog, some of the trouble comes from the simple question of: what am I doing? What do I intend? (I hope I’ll be able to post my thoughts on that, which have been waiting in my drafts, soon.)

A few, unrelated tidbits I learned about me and my writing today:

  1. a playlist I made of songs I can listen to over and over without getting sick of them lend themselves to worldbuilding and character development in Nights of Heroes. Which is interesting since it may imply that if left to it, I might think about that series a lot.
  2. I realized the third section in my recently complete novel (which is in revision) is more incomplete than I realized. Getting a handle on the chronology has helped a whole bunch (i.e. cementing dates so they don’t wiggle around; I have a tendency toward flexible dating…) Additionally, I realized why the second section comes off as different than the rest — it has subplots! The trouble is I’m unsure how much the content of those subplots plays into the larger story. So anyway, it gives me focus. I can work with that.

Sorry if this was a short and brusque.

I took an iPad photo of by analysis notes, if anyone’s curious.

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Writerly Notions: What to do?

So I’m in a bit of a muddle. (Also, don’t mind me, I’m just clearing my thoughts.)

What should I work on? Okay, scratch that. Should I write the final section of my long, long, long overdue demon mythology story, even if I’m not 100% sure it actually makes sense, nor do I know what’s happening? Or should I try to make it all fit together?

And see, that’s the hitch. A lot of ideas I’ve had post 2010 (Romance of Three Jewels, The Painting Story, NIAR, 12D + Bluebeard) actually have structure. Story structure. Conflict. Character arcs. Story stages. Do I know every detail? Probably not. Do I have enough to see how the plot connects and how my characters will grow and get from one story stage to the next? Oh, yes.

But I have at least three major projects that came before 2010. And it’s a pain because they’re not, well, as well structured.

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January Summary

a day late

As part of the Every Day Challenge, instigated by the-cassandra-project, I set up two challenges. The second one, or Challenge #2, focused on Nights of Heroes — revision, outlining, character development. I posted about my progress it every couple days. These posts can be found here at my writing journal.

Other general writing posts can be found here.

My Challenge #1, which was to write 100+ words every day, can be found here (among other material and inspiration related to the story.)

Finally, I made character aesthetics.