Desolace Update #1

So this is my first “official” Desolace update post. I don’t expect this to be a regular thing because Desolace is going very slowly, but I figured since I’m happy with where I’m at, I may as well talk a bit about what I’ve done with it, talk about it, stuff like that.

I mentioned a couple times in previous posts that I worked on Desolace as one of my projects for one of my creative writing classes last semester. By “worked on” I mean I wrote an analysis on some of my plans for the novel in the future, and wrote, re-wrote and extensively edited the first two chapters. I also wrote (not fully edited yet) the third chapter after classes ended and I plan on writing another two of three over the summer in preparation for my next intermediate creative writing class.

My final grade on my writing submission (the two full chapters) was a solid A, which was my goal, so I’m pretty happy with that and hope I can keep it up.

Desolace has always been in a weird spot in the grand scheme of things. Sure I’ve had a good idea of where I wanted to go with it since the beginning, but writing a book is so much more complicated than knowing your characters and plot. Things tend to happen without your consent because your characters do as they damn will please and your world evolves behind the scenes. It gets frustrating, but part of all that is learning how to control the reins and keep things from diverting too far from your original purpose (or knowing when it is appropriate to let it continue).

A couple things I’ve determined from writing these first few chapters is that without an outline (as I prefer) I’m being really particular about the details I add in, and how scenes transition from one to another. Usually, I leave it choppy or whatever and go back and fix it later, but for some reason, with this project, it’s been really hard to move on to the next part if the previous scenes don’t set up everything right. The result has been three good chapters that transition really well from one to the next, but that also makes it slow as hell.

Even without an outline, though, I’ve got the help of the novel analysis that I wrote on Desolace. It helped me solidify some plot points that I’d been thinking about, fleshed out some traits for my main characters and helped me figure out a lot of the why for the novel. So I think the difficulties of writing the chapters so they transition well aside, I’m in a pretty good place to continue writing a good chunk of the story.

I’m considering writing a brief outline just to organize some of the events I’ve got in my head. I’ve had a couple instances already (I’ve got to go change the ending to the third chapter so it leads into something else first) where I’ve rearranged the order of plot points because it made more sense to do it in a certain order. But it’s a pain in the ass to write it out and then realize it’s too early for that, so I figure it would be worth it to write out all the events I have planned and properly organize them in correlation to each other. I don’t want to do anything too fancy, just some bullet points that I can rearrange things visually rather than in my head.

Anyway, I think that’s it for now. Next time I might go into more detail on the characters and what the story is about, but I need to work on accurately summing it all up before I can write anything about that.

~Erynn

 

 

Summer Classes

So I guess it’s official that I’m taking summer classes.

I decided a couple of months ago that it makes more sense for me to go to school for as much of the year as possible. As much as I love writing, when I’m writing for work I’m more focused on writing for other people than for myself, even if I do make time for my own writing. But so far this year with school, even through all my classes and assignments and other bullshit, I’ve made quite a bit of progress without any additional stress. That’s actually because in one of my creative writing classes I haven’t really had to write anything new, but rather I’ve been able to work on Desolace and flesh out scenes I’ve already got in my head. I’m not sure how much more of that I’ll be able to do, but I think that as I get into the higher level creative writing classes, things will become more focused like this, rather than super generalised like both of the first-year creative writing classes I’ve taken. Fingers crossed!

But on top of that, school, overall, has kept me productive and active. I’ve been working on a bunch of stuff– writing (personal and for school), drawing (personal and for school), I’ve been actively studying Japanese — rather than playing lots of videogames. You know, I would like to have time to play games every now and then when I want to, but right now about 80% of my time is devoted to school related activities– mostly because Japanese is a pain in the ass.

The summer, though, will be pretty light on class time, so I’ll be able to get lots of writing done on the side and (if I want to) even some work. I’ll probably make time for both. I’m planning on taking a history and two arts classes– one drawing, the other digital media. I’m not really sure what the second one entails, but it’s required for my degree, so I figured it would be good to get that out of the way over the summer. The history I’ll be in is about the ancient world, like Egypt and Rome and a couple other places. Pretty generalised, but I’m still looking forward to it, nonetheless.

~Erynn

It’s Time to Talk Projects

Some of you might recall that I mentioned some time ago that I’ve put Taichiren’s to the side for now. While putting it aside isn’t a permanent decision, it had to be done in order to make room for some of the other things I’ve been working on. There are only two projects of note, but perhaps they will pique your interest.

The first project is what I refer to as ‘Desolace’, a novel that I wrote in 8th grade or so. Now that I think of it, I’m 100% sure I’ve mentioned it before, but this new version that I’m working on is a much different take on the original story. This is what’s taking Taichiren’s place as my personal project.

Desolace is an adult fantasy/ science fiction novel that is written in the first person point of view, following the character Arianne. Now, I’ll be the first to admit that I’m not a fan of the first person perspective, but I’ve seen it done well often enough to give it a shot for this story. You see, Arianne isn’t your typical protagonist. She’s the main character, yes, but she isn’t a hero or even an anti-hero. She’s the villain. I think risking the first person POV for this story is well worth the potential that could come out of it.

Talking about Desolace will be my focus over the next couple months, so I’ll leave it at that for now and move onto the second project I’ve been working on. I hinted about this in October last year… it’s a bit of a ‘big reveal’.

Since February last year, I’ve been working on a YA fantasy series with a partner. Isn’t that exciting?! I can’t believe I’ve managed almost a whole year without bringing it up… but, wow, the last year has been incredibly productive. Unfortunately I can’t share any details about the plot or the characters as of yet, but here’s the current status of the writing.

The first draft of the first novel was finished in mid-November, at about 99,000~ words, only around 2,000 more than the original Taichiren’s draft. As of this week, my partner and I are sitting down to sort out the intricacies of the plot, so that I can start on the second draft of the first novel by the end of the month. I’ve done a bit of writing for the second book (about 18,000 words, give or take), but that’s been put on hold because of a variety of major plot changes that have brought on the plan to edit the first book early.

It hasn’t been decided how many books there will be yet– though right now we are thinking between 3 and 5. It will depend on how the new plot changes unfold through the first book and how much of the original book needs to be moved into the second. We also haven’t mapped out anything past where I’ve currently written to (besides several vague thoughts), so the length will depend on what unfolds before the story reaches what we perceive as the ending.

Anyway, that’s all I can share for now. I’ll write an update on the second project, which I simply refer to as ‘Drago’, when the editing for the first book beings. Until then, more posts about books, games, random thoughts, and perhaps a bit of Desolace.

~Erynn