This chapter is a challenge; the domino effect has changed almost everything here. Every character is either:
Talking about something that hasn’t happened yet.
Meeting as a result of events that haven’t happened.
Meeting to do something that HAS already happened.
That last one involves Parlay’s money. Earlier, I moved up the scene where she passes around a fat stack of bills like Scrooge McDuck himself. Now I’m at the point where a meeting with Parlay has to occur, but Mean and the rest no longer have a reason to go meet her!
So, what does that mean? There’s still information here that I need to convey, but this chapter is no longer a suitable vehicle for it! It fights me in every impossible paragraph! It is THE UNRULIEST CHAPTER! How can I defeat such a thing!? Continue reading →
Oh baby! This chapter has the new addition to the story that I’ve been waiting to add! And here it sits as an unrefined lump at the start of the draft! It’s really terrible! But I’m not worried; I have plenty of refined goodness going on after that.
Mean’s tournament match has been moved into this chapter, and I’ve gotten it to merge quite well with the original material. SUPER well. Only a couple more chapters and I’ll be past the chain-reaction of doom that I started by screwing with the match order. See, Kim? Changing the plot around after you’ve written a draft isn’t so bad. And the next time your story isn’t working, you can just gaze at this inspirational picture of me:
I’ll be frank: the match that occurs in this chapter is going to be moved to a later one. In its place I’ll swap in a match from chapter 11. I don’t see any immediate problems arising from this change so I should be safe.
Once again, I’m not just switching these events around for fun: I believe that doing so will strengthen the story. It will also help the pacing of the chapters feel more natural. You’ll see what I mean in the notes. Continue reading →
A few of my friends might be wondering why I had my characters visit a bar. After all, I hate spending time in those smoke-filled cesspits. But the bar in my story is based off a particular bar that fascinated me: the bar at a place called “Noah’s Ark.”
It was an ship-shaped building in St. Charles Missouri, and oh look–I found a picture on Google. That saves some time.
The restaurant on the first floor was interesting enough: there were stuffed animals behind glass cases and little giraffe-shaped stirring rods that they’d put in your drinks. But the bar on the second floor was what mystified me as a child.
Of course I was too young to be there when it was open. The only time I could see it was during the day while I waited to be seated with my parents at a table on the first floor. The bar area was vacant during the day, but for some reason I could just walk right up there. I could look at all the empty tables with the seats stacked on them, the long bar with the rows of glasses hanging above. And video games! They had Pac-man! Crystal Castles! Arkanoid! And no one playing them.
“Why would this great place be empty?” I would think to myself. It was a mystery, and I’d wonder what it was like when the adults were allowed in.
I would never see it occupied, though; the business was closed before I turned 21. The building was left unoccupied for years. It was torn down completely in 2007. The only pictures I can find now are from its ruined state:
So there you go. Mean and Dark’s visit to the empty bar in the present is a result of this memory. And their visit to the past is just the sort of thing that I wish I could do. Continue reading →
Vornis and Trisk have both won their matches! How stunning! I thought for sure that the newly-introduced secondary characters would beat them!
But now I must take a break from sword fights and face-kicking nakedness. It is time for the characters to reflect upon what they’ve seen, and to seriously discuss the ramifications of time travel. Or maybe they don’t do that. Can’t really remember everything that happens in this one, to be honest. First drafts are fun. Continue reading →
It’s around this point in the story that my playlist has a bit of a gap. I hadn’t realized what Templetine’s personality would be, so finding a theme to fit him was impossible. And I flat out couldn’t find any music to represent Caldera or Donzel. It wasn’t until recently that I found anything that came close, in a Wii game called The Last Story. Continue reading →
“I enjoy stories with conflict, and I enjoy it even more when those conflicts bring out aspects of a character’s personality. It is one thing to say ‘Trisk is brash’ or ‘Caldera is cruel.’ But only when those traits are brought forth through action do I truly believe those characters are alive.” – Brad Smith, 1902
Oops! Sorry! I’ve been playing Bioshock Infinite, and I’ve been trying to come up with random quotes to leave behind on tape recorders. I was going to leave this one in the bakery isle at Walmart along with a loaded handgun and three pennies. Continue reading →
With the tournament going, I’ve got plenty of matches to describe. So how many do I need? Let’s see–there are eight original participants in single-elimination rounds. That’s seven matches right there. Then with four latecomers challenging the losers of the first rounds that’s four more, and then four again as the winners of those rounds proceed. I’m not really good at math, but that’s like a million matches.
Now I love thrilling duels as much as anybody, but I love concise storytelling more. I’ve got to make cuts somewhere, which means that some of these matches will have to happen off-screen or simply not happen at all.
But which ones, though? As I went through the first draft I wasn’t sure. But that didn’t stop me; I wrote down most of the matches anyway! I put down enough description so that I’d have an idea of what was going on, but not TOO much just in case I decided to delete it later.
So let’s take a look. Time to see if this chapter is worthy of expansion or if it’s headed for the trash. Continue reading →
Well! That took way longer than I thought it would. Not only did I have to replace the entire chapter, but I got sick about half-way through. I’ll be writing a thesis soon about the effects of crappy story ideas on the human immune system. The pain was all worth it, though! Check it out:
The character “Templetine” has a personality now, along with a clear strategy for the game. His battle with Caldera now takes up most of the chapter; I got rid of the other half-assed fight that was near the end. I was also able to use the match to develop the characters in a more vivid way.
I’ll go into more detail after the draft, though. And here it is! After all this time! And I was SICK, remember. This delay had nothing to do with Bioshock Infinite coming out. Continue reading →