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Dec. 12th, 2011

Spy, RDJ

On the Subject of Writing Real Books

So, these past few months have been interesting. Now, when I look through the old Twilight rec rolls, I recognize only the occasional author. Granted, this is largely because I don't read much Twilight at this point. (I am currently in transition between swooning over Stargate Atlantis slash and getting into the HD-Holidays extravaganza). But I also know--cuz we talk--that this is partially because many many FF authors have begun to contemplate or pursue the idea of publishing. 

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Oct. 12th, 2011

hooded_white_face

Fandom Fandom Fandom

Can I say how much I love fandom? 

Too much.

Enough that letting go over the past year has been haaard. 
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Jun. 16th, 2011

hand-on-hip

Paragraph Tar - Writing Rant #3

I'm sure I'm not alone in this, but my greatest pet peeve in other people's writing is one of greatest frustrations in my own. Thickness. Also known as clunkiness. Paragraph tar. Gross self-indulgence. Whatever. You get the point. I think some people as readers have a greater tolerance for this when reading, because often some of this prose is associated with some of the better story lines. Smarter authors tend to have this problem. They also write smarter stories. But so often these stories don't get the attention they deserve.
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May. 18th, 2011

through the looking glass

Generosity and Humble Editing

And thus we continue on this whole "reflections on writing fan fiction" blah blah blah'ing.

Generous HumbledomCollapse )
 
 
 


 *And note, to anyone who cares, I'm allllmost done with Yesternight. I've written 2 and a half chapters. I just see no point in posting until it's done. 

May. 4th, 2011

through the looking glass

Random shit I’ve learned about writing over the past few years…

This is random writing rantiness. I'm planning on doing a few of these. This is all stuff I didn't know or didn't understand when I started writing fan fic, and then learned about. So:

Dialog tags are suck.

My writing rantyness.Collapse )
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Feb. 13th, 2011

mccoy

Reflection Time

Sometimes I forget how much I love writing. I know this happens to a lot of peeps--and it happens often--but every time it does, it feels like a shock. Some days it seems like the most wasted chore--it seems like it's all diet and no skinny jeans.

Nano Rant.Collapse )

But then... well, I started working on something new.  

The character's voice is completely different from my own. I may have written similar characters in the past, but there's something about this one almost strikes a chord of fear in my chest as I write it. I don't know. I just find the voice... shocking at times. 

But I LOVE writing it. I love writing a character doing things I would never ever do. I love the doubt. I love the hateful friends and family (my family, whatever I might bitch about, all love each other devotedly). 

JK Rowling told me loving to write villains was okay.Collapse )

Anyway, if anyone wants to jabber with me about this... please do.

I'm curious about how other people handled writing POVs (especially men's) that were different than their own, whether or not they liked that more or less than voices that were more similar to their own.

Weirdly, Jacob's POV in PSVP was the one I had the most fun writing. Don't tell me what you think that means about me.
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Dec. 30th, 2010

through the looking glass

Holiday Thoughts

1. On Author Stalking

I've read in two new fandoms over the past three months. This, in part, because I was sent a Merlin/Arthur rec list back in the day, and told it was amazing... and then I watched the entire series in one weekend. (The series is not all that good. But more like, bad-good. Think campy 1970's trek.) I read fic for the next weekend. Holy fucking shit balls. Amazing stuff.

Then, I watched the Vampire Diaries, and developed a fat crush on Damon Salvatore (Stefan is so painfully flat and boring. Worse than Sookie/Bill), but I haven't found anything good. I blame this in part on a lack of stalkable authors. The Merlin fandom, for whatever reason, has pulled in a lot of the great slash writers in Fdom. If anything, the more time you spend in different fandoms, you start to realize that certain authors stalk certain relationships, personalities, especially with regard to slash, and that if you like those character dynamics, you will fall into further mad romance with those series, etc.

Anyway, I've managed to freak myself out. 

Because if you read enough of something, you start to write like that something. 

I think they all sound like me. 

I'm going to try and let this go. I don't even know why I wrote about it, except that its been weighing on me.

Bah.



2. Real Books

I want to recommend Soulless and the rest of the Parasol Protectorate series by Gail Carrigan.

When avowed spinster Miss Alexia Tarabotti is attacked by a vampire at a private ball, she’s simply appalled. No vampire worth his salt would ever jeopardize his rank in society by attacking her so vulgarly in a public place.

Not to mention, every vampire knows that she's soulless and therefore contact with her will negate all supernatural ability. Poof! No more immortality. Vampires know to avoid her like the plague.

Which means that this is no society vampire and since no vampires can be made without the proper paperwork, this vampire is a rogue. No simpering miss, Alexia is delighted to try to find out the particulars but she just may get more than she bargained for.

If the author Jane Austen were to have written a vampire novel during her lifetime, SOULLESS would have been it.

I was trapped in the airport for seven hours yesterday on a layover. Long story, and I read this. It's like 8 bucks, mass market--but it was soooo good and funny. The voice is seemless and perfect and it was all steampunk meets comedy of manners and let me just say that societal humor is my favorite sort. So I want others to read. That is all.


3. Yesternight

I am almost done with chapter 10. ALMOST. Then I'll post chapter 9 and 10, and no longer be such a stooge.

Nov. 24th, 2010

through the looking glass

Insert Ridiculous Oil Painting Analogy Here ( a Nano rant)

I am in the middle of my Nano writing, and by the middle, I mean I've written 38,000 words, which seems like... dude, there should only be 12,000 left to go, but BLAH, BLAH, BLAH--it's horrible. Everything I type, afterwards I'm like, "Where's my muse?"

Fucking the Plot Monkeys, that's where she is.

Anyway, it's not that the sentences I'm writing are bad, it's just that it's not coming together. I'm realizing that in order for certain segments of the story to work, I'm going to have to go back and readjust the entire tone of the novel. The TONE. Fixing characters--easy. Fixing pacing--not that bad. But the tone. That's bedeviled calculus.

But then today, while I was in the math lab (where I tutor the mathematically forsaken), I was ignoring my peeps to map out my plot on the dry erase board. I need lots of space, and this allowed me to map out the romantic, action, and "protagonist's person journey" plots. As I was doing this,  I had an epiphany.

Writing a novel is like oil painting.

The steps of oil painting are as follows:

1. you pick the background color. yellow.
2. you paint-draw the still life or person or whatever

now, i draw well--this is the result from heaped on art classes from the ages of 9-13, but I digress. anyway, I really like drawing, just like I really like outlining. It gives you this well-crafted, detailed path to follow. yet, if you've ever done an oil painting you know that nothing from your original sketch will survive. it will be buried. in layers. a sad little skeleton of once-upon-a-time. 

JUST LIKE YOUR NANO OUTLINE!

3. big layers, right on top of your gorgeous paint-sketch. get those colors down.

4. medium layers

5. focus on areas and give detail!

6. go crazy and add spots of color in unusual places~!  (your art teacher will hug you and call you "fearless,")

anyway, do you see.... IT'S LIKE WRITING.

now, I realize that this was probably a painfully obvious analogy to anyone else, but because of fan fiction, I've been telling myself--you've done this before, you've done this before. But the truth is, I haven't. Writing fanfiction is like starting at step 4. Writing a novel is scary step one, and then you go to infinity and beyond!

right, anyway, i've been flaking and baking (a pumpkin spice bundt cake to be specific).

hope you all have a happy turkey day!


 
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Sep. 9th, 2010

through the looking glass

YN Teaser posting time:

So, I finished Yesternight chapter 8 and sent it off to Elle the magnificent. Everything is quite plotty now, and will be for the next few chapters. This one should be clocking in at 15 chapters... At this point in my fic writing, I don't believe in WIPs that go over 20. Then again, we'll see if this one is actually 15 at the end. It was supposed to be 11...

Anyhoo, a dose of comedy:

Edward brought down a mountain goat.

Millie, because she decided she wanted to help, caught another goat. At first she held the animal awkwardly in her arms, as it kicked and bucked, but then an amused resolve struck her countenance, and she squeezed the beast like a cotton-stuffed toy, announcing, “I’ll hold Pickle til you suck his sister dead!”

Edward almost spit goat blood.

Peter, however, thumbed his chin. “Should we name the one Edward’s got? I mean, she’s about to go to great beyond and all, so it’d be a short-lived christening and all….”

“Her name is Flower,” Millie answered with a thoughtful nod, while all the while roughly petting the baying Pickle.

Sep. 6th, 2010

through the looking glass

Feminism and Literature and Villainessery - or How I Am Quite Torn Over This NYT Thingy

 This begins, as all somewhat wanky things do these days, over tweets.

Basically, Judy Picoult and Jennifer Weiner lambasted the New York times over the man!love for Jonathan Franzen's new book Freedom. The New York Times reviewers basically fanboyed the book, calling Franzen a genius, etc. etc. so on and wank!wank!wank! When questioned, Picoult and Weiner said that it wasn't so much Franzen's book--but the bigger problem:  the consistent pushing of male authors and genres that men read (thrillers and mysteries) but never works by women, especially the commercially successful ones.

Now this exchange of viewpoints (i.e. bitch fight over tea cups) was carried on over to NPR. Later on, Slate actually reviewed the NYT Book Reviews, and found out that statistically Picoult and Weiner aren't off mark.

What really made me lean in on this exchange was that:

1. It sounded like a fandom bitchfest between the porny!AH-we-have-the-numbers-beeyatches and the canon/AU!we-have-standards contingents of fandoms, and while I try to be nuanced and not take sides in these sorts of things, I also tend to find such conversation to err on the highly entertaining side....

2. In my kitchen on Thursday M--- who is a 60 year old professional non-fiction writer was explaining to me that he could not write a fictional novel that would sell. There aren't enough people in the demographic that he wants to write to--e.g. men who read "sweet novels." This made me terribly sad. I tend to get sad when people I admire knock themselves, but he was talking about the decline of reading in America. A new kind of commercialization.  Because women and the book club circuit are the main source of fiction-reading,  publishers are unwilling to consider these other sorts of novels. The way publishing has changed, those smaller novels aren't "worth it."

And I can't help but wonder if this is what the NYT reviewers are responding to. 


At the same time, the fact that romance written by men is picked up to review, while romance written by women is dismissed--that pisses me off.

Men who lament the decline of "great literature" can suck my big toe. Now, we have women and minorities writing. Yes, what a great decline

Men who refuse to go on Oprah's book club because they "don't want that label," when she's read Faulkner... um, no.

The thing is, I think Picoult and Weiner were being bitchy by picking on Franzen. Even if they were trying to make a bigger point--they picked on the dorky kid with glasses. From what I hear, he wrote a damn good novel, and to that extent, this seems like the cheerleaders complaining that nerds have higher grade point averages... when, uh duhhhh.

At the same time, though, I think this might be a much deeper issue. I think it might be possible that the NYTBR might think about promoting reading as a whole more... but then again. I don't know.

My apologies if this has beeeeeen one long nonsensical rant.
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Jul. 28th, 2010

through the looking glass

Charlie POV, "Sunshine"

Title: Sunshine
Pairings: GEN, Charlie PoV
Rating: T
Summary: An encounter with Esme Cullen at the drycleaners. Bella is coming home to Forks.

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A/N: I started writing this because I was reading Cormac McCarthy and Jhumpa Lahiri and the voices just fused in my head, but then I don't know, I need to write Yesternight and my other project, and this little ficlet was sitting here just being a poke in the butt--and so I figured I'd post in on my blog rather than let it sit in nowheresville and distract me. It really just is a little character piece about small town life and Charlie. There is the eventual possibility that I'll do something with this someday... but not in the near future. Anyway, here it is:
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Jul. 24th, 2010

through the looking glass

Rearranging my Rec List (Slash One-Shot Recs)

Okay, I'm rearranging my Twilight Rec List, because it was at max, and I wanted to add in multi-chaptered slash, because I've read loads of good ones lately. So, yeah, this is old stuff. The new stuff is on the old rec list.

To repeat my rants on slash... I do not particularly enjoy fluffy slash. I like my boys angsty and high on the mutual testosterone and pheromones. None of this cuteness. For some reason, however, a lot of Twi slash tends to swing in that direction. That's why I'm not reccing--not that it isn't good fluff, but because a lot of it is. It's just that fluff ain't my thing. If it's yours, go scout along a different trail, my friend.

 

Short Human/Vamp SlashCollapse )

New Slash Add-Ins 9/30:

New Slash Add-Ins 9/30Collapse )

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