It struck me that a bit in the most recent installment of "Trevor & Jason" had a potentially problematic reading. So I gave it some thought, and came up with a revision that I think/hope gets to the same place that the narrative needs to go, without the detour into "um, wait, or did they mean..." of the initial version. So. Live, learn, rinse, repeat.

(And it does trouble me, on the meta-level, that I do have the power to go in and alter the available text like this, which is why I mention it; it's probably not an accident that the Sekrit Project is a high-tech dystopia where they wouldn't even be aware that they had memory-holes things could drop into... and there's a certain irony in the fact that I think I lost a high-tech physical-backup of that at a free movie in a park the other night. :/ )
Still picking away at the worldbuilding on Sekrit Project, and I think I've got a handle on the Suicide By Cop -- now all I need to work out is why the kindergarten teacher has the gun in the first place...

And now, a treat for the Readers: since this story was written with a very specific market in mind, and since today is its sell-by date in certain respects vis-a-vis finding it another home in a timely fashion, I'm just going to put this out here for my own amusement and y'all's. Enjoy?

Passion )
robling_t: (Default)
( Jun. 13th, 2016 08:00 pm)
Poll about dystopias over on LJ: what do you, the Reader-or-Viewer, find the most satisfying sort of ending? Possibilities, for the non-polly, are:

  • Protagonist is crushed by Society
  • Protagonist remakes Society
  • Protagonist allies with oppressing faction
  • Protagonist allies with oppressed faction
  • Protagonist evades Society from within it
  • Rocks fall, everyone dies
  • Protagonist's fate is ambiguous
  • I have no idea what I just watched/read or what it meant to Protagonist
I appear to have thrown myself wholeheartedly into worldbuilding for New Sekrit Project. Have to balance that with not neglecting Previous Sekrit Project, assuming anyone's still following that...

What I'm hung up at right now is the part where Muse, in-her-infinite-wisdom, seems to have mentally cast the Bernard Marx-y role in her Brave New World homage as Idris Elba. I suspect that it's Relevant, bordering on plot-Relevant, that he's both A, an Englishman, and B, not a white Englishman, but it would be nice for once to be able to dredge up some of the stuff that goes on at the level of subconscious intuition to where I can interrogate the crap out of it before I'm elbows deep in things and have to work back to see how I can reinforce ideas I'd half(-assedly) worked out here and there already. Because compared to that, I suspect that genderswapping most of the rest of the cast is fairly small potatoes, relatively speaking...

(Have also learned that Shaw's original ending for Pygmalion was basically going to be "Eliza punches Henry in the face and goes off to work for universal suffrage" -- I may have interpreted it in my own unique idiom. Feeling rather vindicated in my displeasure at Billy Elliot right about now.)
Spent a few more days on the treadmill of negative self-talk, to the point where I got physically shaky with the rage/upset a couple of times, and then I guess I must have worn it out like the Excessive Machine in Barbarella because all of a sudden it seems to have ground to a halt. For now. Cautiously optimistic that the Brainweasels have been bought off for a while by:

  • A, the resolution to try to sort out the semilooming healthcare-status situation as soon as I can block out the time, probably Monday at this point, and

  • B, the story idea that walloped me over the back of the head on the way out to knitting last night, which turned out to be another one of those walking-into-things-muttering-for-two-hours doozies that I think I need to either be talked out of, or into, I can't quite tell yet.

(Anybody out there think that there's a potential market for an updating of a zeerusty inter-war dystopia to reflect that we now know exactly how much worse it could get? I need somebody to hold my feet to the fire to get me to do this, if so, because the treadmill could start up again at any moment with the 'everything sucks and nothing's worth doing' Brainweasels' Gentlemans'-Auxiliary Chorus...)
For the record, even my somewhat-OCD-about-getting-the-right-underpants Muse doesn't quite make me drill down to this level of detail. But if she at some point decides that this information could be relevant, at least now I know where to look.

Inner Trevor is just thanking his lucky stars that creative dart landed somewhere else on the map, I think.
robling_t: (muse)
( Apr. 10th, 2015 02:48 pm)
OK, so, writers out there: how do you tell the difference between genuine concerns about whether a story is working properly in terms of where you mean to go with it, and Brainweasels trying to convince you that DOOM IS YOUR LOT and this idea was never going to work in the first place and there's still time to give up before anyone sees you? Because I seem to be thoroughly mired in the 3/4 Of The Way Along Slough Of Self-Doubt, here.

Sudden insight that the story I've been working on actually needed to start two paragraphs later and the middle of it can be handled as a flashback within one long scene. It remains to be seen whether this will help sort out the rest of it within the three months remaining on the deadline I want to submit it for, but fingers crossed that at least figuring out the structure of it at last will serve as a kick in the rear vis-a-vis getting words to start falling out onto the page...

As to the mad project, today's installment rates a mention as being the first disagreement on technique rather than overall-advisability I've had with the Source: as the photo shows, there are two distinct things happening in that top bit, because the directions as written seemed to produce a result that was visually rather pointless and when I decided to look in a different stitch-compendium for something similar it agreed with my instinct that "no, actually you do it this way round", so I switched methods in the middle. (For the knitters, it was using a twisted M1 versus an open M1.) So, I hereby declare that in case of disputes I'm allowing myself to consult Walker as an arbiter for whether or not Source is perhaps talking out of its arse. So there.
Apparently in a few hours the clock here strikes 2015. Given that I've had to repeatedly remind myself even up to this past week that no, that thing from last April isn't still an imminent "to-do", I'd say that I've reached the point where I've definitively lost any capacity I may ever have had to keep track of such trifles as linear time. But, insofar as I can reconstruct the passage of 2014 at all, the highlight was the appearance of "Ffydd (Faith)" in Long Hidden, because it's basically the only thing I remember from the last few months that didn't involve yarn in some capacity. Ahem.

Plans, insofar as I'm any good at making them, for the coming year:

  • Continuing to plug away at the not-exactly-a-putting-on-trousers-to-join-the-army story for a submission deadline of 30th April; current status 1350 words towards minimum of 2k, and reminding myself constantly that I did manage to turn out 3k-word "Ffydd" within the time I still have remaining now.

  • Continuing to plug away on Hiraeth, hopefully with more timely results than for 2014, which I choose to blame on Inner Trevor being in thirty-seven flavours of funk about it being 2014. (He even crapped out on a post about the Christmas Truce, after I took him to the "David Bowie Is..." show and everything...)

  • The Media Consumption project enters year ten, as soon as I get around to doing the previous year's maths.

  • This year's "year of blogging something stupid" attempt shall be to knit my way through a swatch-a-day calendar. By this time next year, I should have either a very large blanket, or a good reason to say someday we'll look back on this and laugh...
The guidelines proper for Long Hidden 2: Hidden Youth are out.

2000-8000 words.

8 months.

I'm trying to focus on the fact that I put 3000-word "Ffydd" together in half that time, but man, have the nerves already kicked in and I've already got 100 words on the page...
robling_t: No, seriously, bollocks (bollocks)
( Oct. 20th, 2014 04:37 pm)
The good news is, Muse has submitted what appears to be the opening line of the new story idea.

The bad news is, it's in second-person.

While this actually does happen to resolve certain difficulties the idea presents for telling this particular story in either first or third, I wasn't really expecting to have to go read Bright Lights, Big City as part of the research for this...
Pooooosibly have a better story-idea for the specific parameters currently under consideration than the previously mentioned one, research for which has basically been foundering on the rocks of "the basic data for this inquiry was never actually recorded in the first place", IE, 'Unimportant' People Are Unimportant. Fudging is one thing, but some of the black holes here are right in the middle of the bits that would show, which makes it kind of hard to start building the house of cards around them at all... Anyhoo. Onwards, upwards, off to the library again, oh, the horror. :)
robling_t: (bat)
( Oct. 3rd, 2014 03:08 pm)
Still thinking aloud RE the previous entry: reading thus far has suggested that Cecily would have a cultural reference-space for the idea of young women's having some capacity to say "I would rather die than conform to your agenda for me"... namely the trope of virgin martyrs. Not altogether sure yet where that goes in the context of a (voluntary and same-sex) vampire conversion, but it's at least a thread to start pulling? *sigh* At least bricklayers would get to be out in the fresh air...
Despite the part where it is now noticeably getting dark earlier and earlier, my mood is somewhat improved from the previous post by the temperature having risen back above, oh, fiftyish. Hypothesis: my seasonal blahs are a function of how many layers of clothes I have to put on rather than raw light-levels. I'd move somewhere warmer, but I rather doubt anywhere does have a stable enough climate anymore anyway.

The Muse is... ticking away in the background, not unlike unexploded ordnance; the latest problem she's trying to drag home on the side is "hey remember you were thinking about writing up Cecily's origin story there's A Thing that could be relevant to submit that to", to which end she's already dragged home a pile of materials from the library. I keep trying to explain to Muse that the problem with Cecily is that she doesn't entirely know What She Wants As A Character, which makes it kind of hard to, y'know, protag with her...

Does "umm, not to be considered property?" sound like a hook to hang a plot on? I worry that my initial 'that'd never fly here' impulse is, once again, that "that's a girl's story hence not Artistically Valid but you can't give a girl a 'rather be hung for my own damn sins' storyline, especially without it going all rapey in one way or the other", and maybe there is a story in there just because of that resistance, but... Yeah. Kind of at the "oh god how does anybody word" stage of this theoretical project. Help me think out loud, here, guys...
Weeeird dream this morning that seemed like the germ of a story idea, if I thought I could make anything coherent and non-appropriative out of "Indiana Jones meets American Gigolo in a futuristic alternate timeline with a stronger surviving influence from Mughal India. Meets The Thin Man." So, uh, yeah. Well, it's got a couple of characters, it's got a setting, all I need now is about three years of preliminary research to even have a hope of doing the worldbuilding any kind of justice at all... oh, and a plot. Those are also kind of relevant, aren't they... (scratching head)
robling_t: (trevorpony)
( May. 9th, 2014 04:03 pm)
Long Hidden is out today.

If anyone needs me, I'll be over here listening to Inner Jason ribbing Inner Trevor mercilessly about the haircut and suspenders braces.

(I ain't explainin'. You'll just have to go buy the book.)
I haven't had enough spoons lately even to address any of the do-able things that might help me to reclaim some spoons. This is, obviously, not a helpful situation. And the damn Weather is. not. helping.

In a completely unrelated I swear enquiry, does anybody happen to know offhand what culture it was that used to deal with the cold by smearing themselves with butter? Asking for a, um, Muse friend...
I am beginning to think that the hangup with getting anywhere on this next installment of Trevor&Jason is basically that there really isn't a way to even pretend that the trip from Chicago to Toronto is remotely interesting. Now I need to find a new place to start this scene that still manages a nod towards Trevor's incredulity that it can be possible to drive for a solid eight hours without even encountering much of an elevation change, much less scenery...
Three years into the Trevor and Jason Experience (well, yesterday, but I have the flu and yesterday got sacked for cause), and I am pleased to be able to announce that final edits have been turned in and signed off on for a spinoff short, "Ffydd (faith)", to be appearing next May-ish in the anthology "Long Hidden: speculative fiction from the margins of history". The Brainweasels, having been unable to come up with any other reasons to needle me about this for the moment, have been uncharacteristically quiet, standing about with their hands in their pockets going, "...Well, we could -- no, how about..." and looking puzzled, which is a good thing. (They did manage a solid round of "you've barely been out of the house for a week YOU'RE GOING TO DIE ALONE EATEN BY CATS" last night, but when it's this cold out that's basically just static.) So, consider yourselves Notified, and write that in on your calendars or whatever so y'all can remember why I'm hiding under the bed again in a couple of months...
I have to write a bio for the anthology.