Hiatus

So after doing this for a while, I have decided to take a small break. It wasn’t something bad, and I learned a lot through it, I believe, however it feels like a commitment to me. I know that realistically it isn’t, after all, it was a choice I made, and I’m just as easily stopping it. Somehow I think that the commitment that I feel is from my desire to write these stories and post them, and because of that commitment I start to feel that I have to want to do something and then I start to lose motivation over it.

It’s such a weird and frustrating feeling since it’s not a writer’s block, there is just a feeling of pure lethargy whenever I think about trying to continue writing. I really hope to be able to come back to this in the future since I do feel that I can progress more, and I want to further these stories, but I will just stop to recharge my batteries and jump start my desire to write the stories without the same feeling of commitment.

Aside from that, my time has also been further taken away by my return to studies at university, and the fact that the mantle of DM  has been passed down to me in our dungeons and dragons group. So I have found myself searching for time more often than not. I’ve been thinking of doing a Hexcrawler, and while I’m not so familiar with the term, I’m using it in the sense that the players have a map that they can use to explore the world and find adventure out in the wild rather than being set on a story. While this means a lot more work for me in the start since I have to set everything up, I’m hoping that once I’ve put down some satisfactory random event tables then I can just keep generating the adventure in front of them.

As like always, I have set up a weird experiment that will most likely blow up in my face, but I’m hoping for the small amount of time that it holds up it will be fun for the players. They’ve found the setting to be a little bit interesting; a world that is only 100 years old without much of a culture. What I’m hoping from this is that they might influence the world is some small ways that will ripple into quite big changes and just immerse them into this world that not only have I created, but they have shaped.

Well, I hope to post on here again. I will probably finish off the last aftermath from Tales of Estrangia and take my break from there. I am thankful that I was able to explore my writing on this platform, and I look forward to my return on it.

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Word Counts

So for the longest time I have worried myself with word counts. In the past, I’ve always tried to keep a quota of at least 3000 words per chapter, but this is becoming a burden. I found myself starting to structure my stories around trying to hit that quota rather than writing the story that I wanted to write. Occasionally some good has come out of it by forcing me to think of some interesting plot points to expand on, but more often than not, it becomes a headache as I try my best just to make up fluff in order to fill out this limit.

A good story doesn’t require a specific amount of words, either maximum, or minimum. What it needs is what is appropriate and what the writer feels comfortable with. If they look at the story and it is a thousand words long, but they’re satisfied with their creation, then they’ve written the appropriate amount of words. The same goes for an expanding tale that covers the life of a character and spans hundreds of thousands of words. If the author believes that they have done a good job, and not only enjoy writing it, but reading it as well, then I believe that they’ve hit that appropriate amount of words.

Writing for me has always been a passion, not a hobby, not a job, but something that I have loved doing ever since I was young. It has evolved over the years, but in these recent months, I’ve found the insight that I have cast on my own writing to have helped me to enjoy it more than ever. I’m slowly losing the chains that I had which tied me to what I believed others’ expectations were and just doing what I want, because I want to, otherwise there’s not really much point in it.

As soon as that passion we have becomes tedious, a chore, that is when we need to take stock of what we’re doing, and find out if we’ve outgrown it, or are doing something wrong, and I know I have not outgrown writing. When I think of what I love to do, it is always the first in my mind. Everything about it is what I have centred my life around.

So I’ve decided to forgo this word limit, and this chain. Instead, I have actually found that I have been writing more in a chapter now that I’m no longer constantly looking down at the word count, or up at the clock to see how close I am to my ‘average words per hour’.

I’m very excited to start focusing on the story and making that work. Bit by bit I will improve my writing, and so long as I improve even just by the smallest of margins, then I have still improved myself as a writer. But those are just my thoughts.

At my current point in progress, I’m finishing off the last chapter of the second part of Tales of Estrangia, at which point I’ll move back over to Dark City Chronicles to keep my mind from going stale, and I cannot wait to use some of the skills that I have gained in order to work on that story as well and continue creating better works.

New Decisions

So I haven’t really posted on here in a little bit. A bit disappointing for me, but even still. It has been a bit difficult to keep my motivation in this damned heat. I get home and all I want to do is sleep, and when I wake up, all I want to do is go back to sleep. Heat makes me extremely lethargic, which frustrates me to no end.

However, I made the decision to not keep going with Emolument for the moment and switch back to Tales of Estrangia for the moment like I had originally planned to. Mostly the reason  that I wanted to keep on with Emolument was because I didn’t really have too much inspiration of Estrangia at the time.

I had always know the beginning middle and end of Estrangia, but there’s all of those small little bits in between that I’m not so certain about, and it felt like all I was doing was meandering along until the story eventually sorted itself out, while I knew pretty much exactly what I was going to do with Emolument since it didn’t really have any of those inbetween bits.

However that kind of impeded my progress a little bit with Emolument. I find that a lot of the fun that I have with writing is actually coming up with stuff on the spot, and so when I have all of the events of a story planned out pretty much to the T, I’m just left with the thought of, ‘well, what else is there to create here?’.

Luckily for me, I found inspiration in a song (surprise, surprise). See, as I said before, a lot of my inspiration comes from songs, but I had nothing to associate with the current point in the story for Estrangia. All of the inspiration I have for that is in the middle and end, so I was a little lost. Luckily the song gave me the motivation to keep going with it and even let me come up with a new bit of inspiration.

The other problem with it was the meandering, as I said before. When I was writing Estrangia yesterday, though, I found the direction I had been looking for. An antagonist. Hunters are the overarching antagonists, however there wasn’t really any plans for the Hunters doing anything to the group in the first few arcs. It was a lot about establishing characters and the city itself rather than the fight that was to come.

So I found an antagonist, and one that I’m going too find both interesting and difficult to write. They’re suppose to be a smart character, a tactician, which is unfortunate because I’m not. It is going to be interesting to try and create these innovative tactics that will give the main characters trouble and actually be clever. I suppose I’ll just have to figure it out when I come to it, though.

Busy Week

So the last week was a bit hectic. I got food poisoning a couple days after my last post, and then had to go to a wedding in what was supposed to be 39 degree heat. Luckily it wasn’t that hot and the service was pretty short. All in all it was a pretty pleasant evening, and it was good to catch up with family that I haven’t seen in a while.

After that, I tried to get some more writing and editing done during the week, but since it was just out of holidays, the place that I volunteer at needed some extra help. I only took up a few more hours, but it seemed to be enough to drive a bit of the motivation out of me. In any case, I’m trying to recover a little bit, and I think I’ve found my answer.

Before, I said that music is one of my driving inspirations. I’ve found that quite often I have a sort of iconic song for certain stories. I’ve found one for Dark City, and I have one for Emolument, but so far I don’t really have a set one for Tales of Estrangia, and it’s kind of hurting my progress there. I don’t want it to end up in aimless rambling, so I might take a little break from it and actually finish Emolument rather than switching at the end of each part.

I’m actually pretty excited to continue it. The story has been a favourite of mine for a while, and I’ve enjoyed thinking up not only the characters, but the world behind them as well. I’m thinking of having a post every now and then trying to explain some of the elements of the world that might not pertain to the story, but small little tidbits that I’ve found interesting and want to convey.

I think that might be it for the moment. I’ve gotten two chapters finished this week, I’m not sure that I’ll be able to get a third about, but you never know.  I’ll most likely post the next one on Monday, though.

After the Break

So I almost didn’t get to post anything today. After over a week with no internet, I came back from our time away from home to not be able to establish a connection to the wordpress servers in order to be able to publish the chapter I was trying to upload. Luckily it somehow fixed itself as evidenced.

So apart from that, I had a pretty good time while away. It was nice to just hang out with my family and not worry about anything. I went crabbing with my father at one point which was pretty fun, you know, aside from the small critters running through the sand clouds and snipping at you on the way past. Still though, I enjoyed myself and it we managed to get a lot more than we have in the past.

On the writing front I managed to get quite a bit done. I think I finished around six off the top of my head during my time away. Pretty successful if I do say so myself. Only problem was that I was a little inhibited by the inability to use the internet. See I usually struggle with creating names for characters, places etc. So one technique that I use is taking a language that I imagine the character stemming from, taking a word which I associate with them and then twist it so that it sounds believable as a name. That was how I came up with names for a couple of the three Fire Pillar members, Igrein and Niselt stemmed from Igneous if I remember.

So, deprived of google translate, I wasn’t too eager to write a chapter in the perspective of someone who I didn’t have a name for yet, but now that I’m back I hope to be able to get that back on track soon enough.

Schedules

Recently I’ve been trying to keep to a certain schedule. Since the Christmas break is here, I wanted to try it when I got back. Essentially it involves writing a chapter on four days of the week, and editing one of those chapters each on the other three days before uploading the finished products. Since I won’t spend as long editing as I will writing, I’m planning on also trying to complete an image or writing prompt from reddit should I have the time. Hopefully I will also be able to have a surplus of chapters steadily increase which will give me a little buffer should I need it.

Apart from that, I’m very happy to have gotten the first chapter of my one word titles finished and out. I’ve been waiting for a very long time to work on this because for the longest time, the concept that came out of this prompt was so interesting to me. The first story is set in the world of emolument, the noun for wages from working. It is a world that has been consumed by corporations, the populace only living to continue working. The story follows an agent of the corporations named Garth, a collector of debts.

I have the second and third parts of the story finished and ready to be edited, however I don’t think I will rush them out before I leave for the Christmas break because I have planned for one last part before finishing up with that setting for the moment and returning to Tales of Estrangia, which I have mixed feelings about.

So, I love Tales of Estrangia to bits, I think it has been one of the oldest stories that I’ve had bouncing around inside of my head, but there are so many parts that I’m interested in exploring that are so far away from where I am at the moment. It’s one of the troubles with knowing exactly how a story is going to progress in that, while I’m not bored with what I’m doing at the moment, I just find the future so interesting that the current part pales in comparison, which is slightly annoying, but I will work through it, and hopefully my schedule will allow me to stay motivated and on track.

That post was a lot longer than I thought it would be, originally when I was looking at it I barely could make it past one paragraph, but then I suppose I did kind of wander a little at the end there, ah well, such is my mind. I might post the next chapter of emolument tomorrow along with another post here, but I’ll see how frantic I am while packing.

Back And Forth

So in just finishing the first arc of my most recent story, I’ve decided to continue my rotation onto the last project that I will be switching between. This one is a writing exercise that I have been thinking of doing for a while where I utilise the word of the day page from dictionary.com. I will be starting from the beginning and going through. So that means that the first one will be emolument.

One thing I want to note beforehand is that I have attempted this before, so for the first few of the stories I might already have part of it written out, though that being said, most of it was just world building rather than an actual story. That being said, I have had a fair idea in mind of what I have wanted for the first word for quite some time, though most of the time spent between now and when I finish it to rework it slightly to be a bit more cohesive than the random thoughts of it that are tumbling around inside my head.

And that brings me to my next point of explanation, why I’m switching between projects. I think I may have already discussed this in a previous post, but I have a feeling that it might be a common occurrence until I remember that I’ve spoken about it. I have this weird sense of motivation where I am always looking for something new to create. This is good and bad in that my mind is always filled with all of these wonderful creations that I want to put to paper, however it also makes sticking with a project extremely tiring.

I haven’t tried switching projects at this rate before, so I’m hoping that the time apart from the different projects will be enough to keep my interest in them and refresh my thought process in how to proceed with them at a decent rate.

I still find it odd myself, though, that I get so excited to write parts of the story that are so much further on, and yet I just get so burned out on the parts that I’m writing at the moment. I think part of it may be that I’m not too experience in writing structured, yet more detailed arcs rather than just tapping away at my keyboard until I’ve found myself satisfied. The problem with the latter is that often times I’ll  find chapters that are near double the length of others, and they take so much longer, which doesn’t help when I’m already bad enough at trying to keep to a schedule.

I think that’s all I really wanted to say in that regard, though.I hope I didn’t drag it on too long and make things boring. I might talk a little more about DnD next time since there are a few things that have come up there which are a little interesting.