Art · Stories · Uncategorized

The Motherly Writer’s Award

I have been tagged once more, by my friend Kate.  Thank you very much, this shall be a hopefully fun post as I show what a dysfunctional family I have amongst my characters.

The Official Rules:

  • Thank the person who tagged you and link to Belle’s original post
  • Take the picture
  • Answer the motherly writer questions
  • Tag at least three bloggers at the end

The Motherly Writing Award originally came from Worlds of Ink and Paper, inspired from Kate’s Evil Writer’s Award, so that is fun!

There are seventeen questions to answer.

The Questions

1. How motherly are you to your characters? What sort of a mother? Strict but attentive? Spoiling and soft? Tender but cautious? Or perhaps you are one of those writer mothers who is not so motherly?

I don’t think I’m motherly at all. There might be a few characters I spoil, but I don’t think it’s in a motherly fashion. I’m not really strict, I usually depend on my characters to point out the direction of the plot once I get beyond the basic premise. It can be difficult that way. But my characters come to life.

2. Do you fret about your characters’ fates? Their dates? Whether or not they get kids of their own?

I sometimes fret about their deaths or if they get tortured. But generally I try to unfold things naturally.

Except for romance, generally I want everyone to end up happy and loved. So they have someone to cling to when I tear apart their entire world and annihilate them.

3. Are you sad when your characters are hurt? How sad on a level from one to ten are you when one of your characters in injured physically or emotionally? Spiritually? What about if they die?

It depends on the character. But I’m often detached enough from them that I don’t feel much. My motivation to write can go down if a character is suffering, especially emotionally or spiritually, but that might be because I get bored and want whatever is hurting them to get stabbed in the face so they can keep going and get this story done. So…it can be a 0, or it can be an 11.

Their deaths have made me cry, I will say that.

4. Are you aggressive or do you retaliate when someone insults or doesn’t like your characters/book? To what extent?

I haven’t had much trouble with this. Mostly my siblings complain that my stories are too big and complicated and I note that they ain’t to be my beta readers. Nope. But I haven’t had many people comment on my stories or characters, so there just hasn’t been enough volume for criticism to test my reaction.

5. Which of your characters do you “baby” the most?

Sometimes I think I’m babying them, or coddling them, doting on them…but I think I just want to do that as I realize, “Nope, the plot demands you get all your wants ripped away from you. Sucks to be you, loser.”

Then I take away their hopes and dreams and make them fight a million battles before they can finally settle down at last.

I am rather attached to Des right now, and Sheyla…but I keep making life hard for them. Except Sheyla keeps getting this propensity to fight back and kill badguys, so I’m not sure she’s going to suffer enough.

6. Which one of your characters do you let fend for themselves the most?

Robert has been stuck in limbo and hasn’t been getting written despite residing in Spectra, so I guess he’s been abandoned to fend for himself? He has to write his own story now?

7. Do you tend to cling more to your older children and stories, or your youngest ones?

Whatever’s newest and shiniest, oh yeah. I guess it’s because the newer ones are better honed after years of experience so they get to the core of what I really want to read about.

8. Do your characters have any habits or styles that you disapprove of?

*Glances at Des and his friends*

There may be some fundamental problems of character and disastrous coping mechanisms going on, yuuuuuup….

And then there’s Elvyla. Perfectly proper and perfectly emotionally stable. What gives? I tell you, Willowbrook makes everything perfect. Even homework is great there.

9. Which of your characters are you most proud of?

Oooooh. That’s a hard one.

It may fall between Elda, Dale, and Sheyla.

10. How many of your main characters have actual mothers?

Ummm….Of current stories…Four. But three of them are the girls of Willowbrook, where apparently life is perfect. And the only mother alive in Spectra is Robert’s and he hasn’t shown up.

Oh, wait. Astarta has a mother, and the Blackwells have a mother, and a nameless important girl has a mother, but that gets into side character territory. None of the mothers have shown up much. But the nameless girl’s mother will turn out to be very, very important.

But none of the main characters in Spectra have mothers since, as we have seen, Robert has apparently made himself irrelevant for the time being.

11. How many of your main characters are mothers?

There’s a kind of main character who is a mother.

12. Have you ever had pressure to kill off a character? Have you ever downright refused?

Like if the story is just telling me characters have to die? That pressure may feel too organic to be a problem for me.

But if I roll some dice asking yes/no questions and ask if all of humanity has been obliterated from this one particular world…Yeah, that’s pressure.

And it’s very, very hard to refuse the decision of the dice….

13. How many of your characters are children?

There’s a lot of characters who start out as kids or teenagers in this story. Sheyla being the most important one, aged eleven at the beginning.

14. Are you loath to kill characters? How much so?

Yeah, I really don’t like it. I can only manage to kill off characters who I invented to die at some point. Otherwise I get too attached.

Except that one character. That one character I just made up and was living, and then…the character wasn’t around anymore…so, that character must have died off sometime.

15. Are you biased for your own characters?

1000%

You will love my characters, I’m certain of it.

You will love them even as I rip away everything they love.

Or is it that I’m slowly adding everything that they love?

Well, there will be lots of explosions at least.

16. How well do you care for your characters?

Ha. Ha ha. I don’t take care of my characters, I am not their mother and I will will ruin them before they get built back up again. Okay, sometimes I give them nice things.

But then they repay me by smashing my outline to smithereens, so I guess I’m either a vengeful not-mother out to kill them, or maybe…I just let them run amok and smash that outline like tantrumming little children, and it works out better than in real life?

17. And do you intend to be more motherly, or less motherly with your characters in the future?

Let’s stick with not motherly.

The End

As always, no retagging, because others have been tagged.  Unless you, the random person over there, want to try it out?

Art

Green Combat Mage

greencombatmage

A sketch that turned into something more.  He is pretty much the usual design I have for mysterious medieval fantasy warriors.  Helmet, mask, sword, magic, and a dark outfit.  He could fit in any storyworld except Spectra.

On the other hand, were he to stumble into Spectra the Void Lord would certainly have something to do.  Get that Other magic out of here!!!!

He could be a hero or a villain, and might be a bunch of my characters all smashed together because I can’t decide what to write and all the dudes in my floaty plot premises look the same.

At least he got colored.

The question I need to answer is, “What story best fits my current art style?” because that’s the one that will get done right now.

Life · Uncategorized

Valentine’s Day 2018

There was a night I lay awake, time streaming by with restless thoughts.  The night became dark morning, and still a restless spirit filled me.  I worried over my troubles, wondered about my future, prayed to God for help, for calm, yet nothing changed.  Would this keep up forever?  The hours before dawn were slipping away.  I prayed for this and that.  Usually the right remedy, but nothing brought calm.

And then, a sudden thought, I prayed inside, “God, please be with my future husband.”

My restlessness faded away immediately, and I finally drifted off to sleep.

Sometimes God keeps you up when someone needs prayer.

I had long hoped for a husband, but no meeting came.  I began to doubt, even if I did meet him, perhaps it would be so long from now to be too distant to sustain hope.

And then that night came.

He needed prayer and I gave it.  God meant it so.

I know he is real.

I do not doubt anymore.

My faith is sure and my loyalty declared.  Someday I will meet him.  Perhaps I must go to him, or wait longer still, yet I think God is moving life forward.  I must join him, wherever he is.

I love him.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

 

*

And Happy Valentine’s Day to all you random people reading this… o.0

I’ll probably go back to writing stories now.

Art · sci-fi · Uncategorized

A Portrait of Astarta

Astarta

So I was sketching and sketching, and then I ended up with this painted sketch of Astarta.  Who looks sad.  But that’s just ’cause Des isn’t falling in love with her.  But why wouldn’t he?

Is she actually a psychopath bent on murdering everyone?  Does she collect too many weird tea pots?  Does she subscribe to a million conspiracy theories?

Well, actually it all gets down to politics.  And war.  And being from the wrong country. Whoops.

I doubt they’re going to have a nice Valentine’s Day this year.

Mwahahahaha.

Des: Noooooo!  Why does she have to join us on the blog?!

Me: Hey, at least you can complain together about having a meanie author. >:D

Des: Or I could find a nice plot of deep earth for my author… >:|

Me: Don’t make me take defensive measures.  You are only dooming yourself. MWAHAHAHA! *Runs away to cackle elsewhere*

Des: >:\   >:/   >:|

Stories · Uncategorized

The Early Writing Tag: Many Self-Inserts

Prepare yourself for a long post.

The esteemable Kate tagged me and now I must divulge the horrendous secrets of my past…that all young writers have as a common shame: PLAGIARISM!

Or possibly really terrible and confused fanfiction.

And unfinished plots.

Let us begin.

Official Tag Rules:

  • Thank your tagger.
  • Answer these two questions:

What horrendous book did you write as a child?

What did you learn from it?

  • Talk about any number of writing projects.
  • Tag 5 other bloggers. (Haha, NEVER!)

Thank you, Kate.  The experience has been enlightening, and I mean that both sincerely and snarkily.

My Early Writing Projects:

1. The Shrek Rip-off

My first project, near as I can tell, was a direct rip-off of Shrek, drawn like a picture book. It was before I could write, at least before I could write well. I replaced Shrek with some random blond guy because I didn’t care to draw ugly ogres. The donkey still tagged along for the journey, despite lacking suitable neck length to be anything remotely equine. He also lacked any personality.

I was the princess.

That’s right, it was self-insert fanfiction. I gotta be along for the adventure, that’s all there is to it.

Now, at the point when the highly triangular dragon cast Shrek/Blond Guy into the castle tower I was awakened just as Fiona was. I later edited in my reaction as being “I want to slay orcs, drow, and shadow dragons,” to relate my interest in The Lord of the Rings, D&D, and my own storyworld, respectively.

And to show the fact that I never intended to be the princess getting married at the end of the story. Nope.

Blond Guy apparently officially shook me awake and explained things, and then we all left and the dragon was trapped. The adventure continued on according to the original. You know, the travel scenes. Nothing else was remotely the same.

I randomly recited, “Fee, fi, fo, fum, I smell the blood of an Englishman,” apparently intent on eating Blond Guy, for I was now a giantess?  Armed with something sharp and stabby?

However, I pretended to go along with the plot. Thus we came to Lord Farquaad’s castle.  I think the Blond Guy and the donkey tried to crash the wedding?

But I had other plans.

I revealed myself to be a Space Ranger and all the forces of Star Command and Zurg’s evil empire crashed through the cathedral ceiling to battle each other!

The End.

What?  That’s how it ended.

Lesson Learned: Here we see my earliest love of crossovers and sticking myself into stories to see how I would react differently.  And also that I will always turn stories into galactic battlegrounds.  I cannot write small stories.

2. The Dragon Keep

This was a real story about Princess Lanuka and the Knight Glanorin who was cursed to be a silver dragon. Lanuka was enchanted to turn into a unicorn if she stepped into moonlight, and an evil red dragon was chasing them down on the order of the wizard villain. It was supposed to be all quite fairy tale-ish.

It was partly inspired by the beginning of Dealing with Dragons (The Enchanted Forest Chronicles), because there Princess Cimorene disdains the boring, fancy prince she is arranged to marry. So she runs away. In Lanuka’s case, she meets the prince who is to be her suitor and he is just as boring and fancy. But then she gets kidnapped, and when she is found again she has to convince people to let her marry Glanorin instead of the prince.

It was also slightly inspired by Shrek, because I latched onto the idea of the dragon guarding the castle with the sleeping princess and played with a crocodile Beanie Baby guarding my toy castle and decided that this story should be called The Dragon Keep.

It would be nice to complete it someday. Though it would be rather different in tone.

And it was the very beginning of Thren, back in 2003!

Lesson Learned: I make great storyworlds. 😛  And princes are usually boring.  At least compared to knights.  Perhaps I should allow myself to be a little more whimsical with magic, as well.

3. That Thing

That thing I wrote with Trixsy (my toy horse) and LotR characters in my living room and Trixsy got in trouble and had to peel a million potatoes but there was some sort of actual plot going on and I have no idea.

Lesson Learned: I like to bring characters out of their normal setting into my own domain, apparently. *Glances at the Great Castle Deathmatch Tournament and how I still do that in recent times (though with my own characters now!)*

And I might be bad at plots.

4. The Harry Potter Fanfic

This wasn’t just a rip-off of Harry Potter. This was a rip-off of my sister’s silly fanfiction where everyone went crazy at Hogwarts, so Harry, Ron, and Hermione had to go on an adventure to set things to rights.  It was extremely goofy.

I did, at least, go a slightly different direction with it. I didn’t make people crazy (not much), I just…made it a massive crossover.  It was set after Voldemort’s defeat, and the trio decided to visit Hogwarts again even though they had graduated (I predicted they would defeat him at the end of their school years! I must have the Sight! [Get your Chosen One prophecies for half-off!]). For there was danger still threatening the world.  Random drow lurking in the streets of Hogsmeade, Ring Wraiths flying about, orcs and other things menacing the populace.

Oh, yes, I was also tagging along with the main characters too.  The self-inserting never ends does it?

When we arrived at Hogwarts, who else would join us during these strangely dangerous times but…Link!

Hogwarts was now a Dungeon.

It seems apt, surely the moving staircases supply a good puzzle for him. And it’s really a dangerous place.  Seriously.  Why do people send their kids there?

Some other things happened and eventually…Halo aliens invaded.

Then I got tired of Hogwarts and invited people to come to my own magic school in Thren called Rosenda and there was something about shadow dragons attacking it. And kingdoms at war.

It drifted into unfinished oblivion thereafter.

Lesson Learned: Here, let me show you all the stories that have shaped my being. (Maybe needed some Star Wars in there too…)

Also…sometimes fanfic gets boring and it’s time to write real stories. Good lesson to learn.

5. Secret of Silria

Finally I set off to write my own original stories.

This was about Princess Silria and her kingdom that ended up getting betrayed by another kingdom. With a magical plague.  Then the royal family went into the plague infested city instead of ruling outside of it. Smart.  The Queen died.

As for my writing, people would enter and leave the scene very suddenly and Silria was annoyed at not getting enough clues about the colossal doom looming over her that she wasn’t aware of.   She did have a decent conversation with a magical fish named Flerno, who was gold and silvery.

It was supposed to turn into kind of an epic story and have elves and drow and was mainly inspired by LotR music. Not sure where the plot came from.

Lesson Learned: My stories may become obsolete and impossible to reconcile with the way Thren is now, but ah, there are hidden gems that can be held onto no matter what.

Flerno is now a Classic of Thren.

The End…of Self-Inserts and Obsolete Geography

Something I thought of after thinking about how much young writers directly copy stories so much, is that it’s rather like an artist copying a painting or a photo for practice.  Which is usually considered acceptable practice, yet writing the same or similar things always feels so off to people once they grow up.  Even though it is also practice when it gets down to it.

I think most of what I have learned from this is how necessary it is to allow ideas to percolate and age. How ideas from stories here and there can be transformed into something slightly of your own, and then with time they change and shift even more and become incredibly different and New.

I can’t go back to the way Thren was at the start, but it was a very good thing I started with my little storyworld as I did, else how could it have grown into something as immense and grand as it is now?  It was interesting looking back on my old writing and my old influences. To see where I came from.

Hopefully I will soon have something to share about my current stories.

Some things have surely developed enough over fourteen years….

*

The land of old lay in stillness,

Legends untold waited, restless.

*

Willow down the hill,

Wind blowing with strong will,

Come to bring dark ill,

Come to shatter and kill.

Come for blood to spill.

Willow down the hill,

The Rose is red, not white,

The sky has darkened to night,

Woe and Wrath have their fill.

Come for blood to spill.

 

The first poem and first two lines of the second poem have long been in my mind.  I never quite finished the “Willow Down the Hill,” I always made variations.  It’s one of my oldest attempts at poetry, so there’s certain timelessness about it to me.  But this composition works for a story now.

Tags?

Nope.  No tags, everyone else has been tagged already! MWAHAHAHA!

Honestly, I was surprised by how many self-inserty stories I wrote.  I never thought I was much of a fanfic writer.  But apparently my younger self was?  Very young self…

Which of my fandoms do you most approve of? xD