Tidings 06/20/2014


  • Announcements

I guess what pertains most to you all, dear readers, is the mere fact that I’m reducing my twice-a-week posts down to the classic once-a-week variety. The simple reason for this is that I want to provide higher quality posts, and more than once I feel that I wrote posts on topics that served little purpose other than “filler.” They felt that way to me, anyway.

That word leaves a bad taste in my mouth, and it’s something I’m determined to not do again.

Also, though not particularly related to this blog, I’m expecting some big environmental changes soon. In other words, I’m moving. Like I said, this should not affect the blog all that much on account of the fact that none of you know where I live anyway. However, where I’m headed is a new and exotic place overseas, and the nature of a number of posts may reflect this for, as most of you know, I’m rather big on experience. I have no intentions of turning this into a travel blog or anything, but chances are I’ll come across something inspiring and related to writing and/or fantasy to share.

More on that in the future.


  • Writing Progress

It’s June, which means we’re nearing the end of yet another quarter for the Writer’s of the Future contest. I have a story ready, and have allocated some valuable feedback from a number of trusted associates. Typically I wait until the last day of the deadline, just in case I have any last-minute thoughts regarding the story, but this time around I’m thinking I should just submit it a week early and be done with it.

My other writing, the ever-ongoing novel project, progresses at a slow grind. I’ve reached a point where there remain but three chapters of raw text to be written out. Ideally, that will come out to another 30,000 words, but word count does not matter so much as the actual telling of the story. I’m finding that certain character perspectives involve a lot more detail, a lot more things to write about, than others, and wonder to myself whether there is any detriment to having characters’ chapters at 10,000 words while others, from other characters, are as low as 6,000. It doesn’t concern me that much, but just enough to make me wonder. The last thing I want to do is fill shorter chapters with fluff.

Then of course there’s refinement and editing. I think I actually prefer that part, though. The raw creative energy is lovely, don’t get me wrong, but getting the thoughts in place and the words down seems to be the longest part for me. I’ve read how other writers hate editing their own stuff. I rather enjoy it – as far as I’m concerned, the hard part’s over at that point, and it’s just a matter of organizing, trimming, refining.

I’ve noticed those are activities I enjoy doing in life.

Regardless, nearing completion of this novel is really quite exciting. When I finish the first draft, I’ll share the story (and believe me, there is one) for its inception and how I came about writing it (a third time). For now, though, suffice it to say it’s still in the works, and my goal of completing it this year is still very easily in sight. After all, 30,000 words really isn’t that much. Those of you familiar with NaNoWriMo know this to be true.


Today’s musical number is brought to you by a documentary I occasionally find myself returning to, called Wild China. As of this posting, it’s on Netflix, and Wild China is about exactly what it sounds; a National Geographic-styled production focusing on the wildlife and landscapes of China. It covers some of the peoples living out there, too, but mainly focuses on the natural science.

China is a big goddam place, with dozens of extremes in both animal life and environments; in terms of culture, what a lot of people don’t know is that China is more like Europe than a single unified country. Sure they’re under one flag at this moment in history, but they’ve 292 living languages today, including dialects spoken by 52 ethnic groups. Aside from some of the stunning imagery the documentary shows, we get to hear the narration of Bernard Hill (who us fantasy fans might recognize as King Théoden from the LotR movies.)

I couldn’t help but think of Théoden in his throne (post anti-aging), reading the script to this.


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