links for 2008-08-03 [delicious.com]




links for 2008-07-09




links for 2008-07-08




NYC family find themselves in a children’s book


Architect Secretly Builds Epic Scavenger Hunt into NYC Apartment

Eric Clough “…secretly built an incredible scavenger hunt into a $8.5-million, 4,200-square-foot Park Avenue apartment that included ciphers, riddles, poems and a lot of hidden doors and compartments.”

Which is totally freaking cool.



Progress!


So I haven’t been blogging because I had to do a degree, but now that’s finished so I can get back to something akin to regular bloggerizing. Hooray!

After completing the first draft of March of the Titans, I promptly renamed it to Rise of the Titans or possibly Titanomachy, depending on whichever suits me better – mainly because of a white history book of the same name that I wish to avoid confusion with. I can assure you this novel will have almost nothing to do with racial homogeneity.

So how’s the second draft going? I’m glad you asked.

words=83610&target=100,000

Nearly finished now, running up to the final chapter. Also planning to write a novella I plan to give away to help promote it – it’ll feature most of the same characters, except younger and in a totally different setting.

There is now a daily flash fiction blook available – more info and a buy link here.



More Progress


So I’m approaching the end. All of the pieces are in place, we’re in the midst of the final battle, and strange lights have started falling from the sky. Or those might just be a delusion on the part of Our Hero. He’s been through a lot in the past months after all.

Looks like it’s going to be below target, but I already think I’m going to have to add a few chapters to flesh out some secondary storylines, including a very important minor character (for one of the major characters if not the plot as a whole) who’s dropped in the middle of the novel. Might be some shuffling too. But for all intents and purposes I’m nearly done.

So what does this mean? It means the Daily Flash may well be coming back at some point fairly soon, depending on prior commitments. I’m at least going to get a few in the can fairly soon so I can make a start. That’ll keep me going until the novel’s been edited and added too. I plan on fixing the main mistake that led to me dropping it in the first place – scheduling. I’m going to get about twenty or thirty in the can before I start blogging again, so I can get around problems I had last time (flashes turning out to be more involved short stories, for example).

I’m also editing a short collection of the current stuff up there for a lulu book. Which should be fun.



Progress


Apologies for not posting much, I’ve been a touch busy writing and trying to get a job so I have some actual income coming in as well, primarily because I’m starting to run out of money. Ho hum.

Anyways, only got 1700 words or so down today, but I did some shuffling around as well so I feel a some accomplishment – at least I did something after all.



Choke Points


I noticed something today in my writing as a common habit: I’ll sometimes reconsider writing as opposed to doing something else (i.e. procrastination – curse you, Doom Legacy!) – but that this always happens at a specific number of words: I tend to choke at two-fifty to three hundred words, then again at a thousand, then again at two thousand.

It’s a weakness of mine, and something I need to work around – though really the only option is to insert butt in chair and keep hammering away at the keyboard until I’m past the choke point. What I’m going to try now is that, on off days, I’ll aim for five hundred words, because in all my previous attempts, I have never managed to write something comfortably in exactly five hundred words – my scenes always tend to be either 2-300 words or a full thousand.

Had a minor block earlier this week and last week, methinks because I’ve hit the middle of the book (see the word count, yay!) – it’s the hump of the bell curve if you like, still setting everything up for the finale but it’s not quite done, and a part of me is getting tired (as I know what’s going to happen and I just want to get to it).

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New stuffs


Right, I got a lot done on the new novel today, as you can see in the bottom right, or right here. It’s bubbling away quite comfortably, although there are a few bits in the later half which I’m as yet uncertain as to how they’re going to work.

14,334 out of 100,000. Yay!Also, I made a new page called Bibliography, which contains links to all of my books to date and where to buy them. Admittedly there’s only one at the moment, and that’s a very short lulu collection of short fiction, but soon it will be joined by a short lulu collection of very short fiction! Hurray!

And by soon I mean after I’ve written March of the Titans and finished editing a short story.

Which probably won’t actually be very soon at all.



A Rambling Post About Transformation


All my life I’ve been fascinated by the concept of transformation. In my early years I found the concept frightening – Doctor Who or the Daleks never disturbed me, but I could never watch the old Hulk series with Bill Bixby turning into Lou Ferrigno – I think it was the idea of letting something out, turning into something new, that upset my innate need for stability. But then, desirable transformations didn’t upset me at all – my favourite piece of childhood entertainment was, after all, called Transformers.

But as time has passed this fear has turned to fascination, until now I derive much joy from seeing different forms of transformation, be they into monsters or superhumans or anything else. I think that’s why, much as I love the western superhero tradition, I spend so much time watching eastern heroes like Kamen Rider – when the hero goes into battle, he literally transforms into his alter ego – rather than being the same person in a spandex suit, he gains new strength and new abilities and, in some cases, literally a new body.

I think this love of transformation is also what attracts me to writing fiction and stories – in the end, every story is about a transformation, be it a transformation of characters or a transformation of a world. Even if the hero or heroine awakes to find their experience a dream, they seldom walk away unchanged.

Personal Development, a recent interest of mine that precipitated the creation of my blog Hifelacking, is a further symptom of this deeper interest, and perhaps deeper need. I’ve been listening to a lot of Tony Robbins stuff lately, and he often talks about change itself taking only a second, something that reminds me of David Hume’s Bundle theory of the Self – the notion that a person is not an identity, but a loosely aligned collection of perceptions and experiences, and that identity is made up from these perceptions. All this means that we are all transforming from moment to moment, shifting being that only perceive a single identity.

Which is pretty cool.