Writer Workshop

(Posted by chris the cynic)

Those of you who also frequent Ana Mardoll’s Ramblings will find this somewhat familiar.  Here, as there, it was requested that there be a regular post to talk about writing projects (and other artwork-creation). Thus this post exists.

Pencil by Elisa Xyz

What are you working on? How are you feeling about it? What thoughts and/or snippets would you like to share? How does your activism work into your art? What tropes are you hoping to employ and/or avoid? Are there any questions you’d like to ask or frustrations you’d like to vent?  Writing workshop below!


7 thoughts on “Writer Workshop

  1. Slow Learner March 7, 2014 at 3:20 am

    Whoo, been a while since I’ve been back in the ‘verse.
    I’ve been doing more writing than usual lately. My main project is a story in the fairly far future; humanity sent colony ships in cold sleep out to likely looking worlds. Centuries later, after contact with all of them has been lost, FTL travel is discovered and the people of Earth start going out to look at what happened to the colonies. Some have died out, some have thrived. The protagonist, Rachel, has been sent to investigate a far-flung colony world which was established by a con man (think Ponzi schemes) who used his earnings to build a ship…

  2. Firedrake March 7, 2014 at 7:26 am

    “So the colony was successful? That must have annoyed him.”
    “Think about it. All those people, desperate to hand over their entire assets for a chance at a new life. A con man’s dream. But something went wrong. Maybe they were keeping too close an eye on him. So instead of putting all the money in his Swiss bank account, he had to actually spend it on the things he’d told the marks he’d spend it on. At least tell me he didn’t have go to on the ship and pretend to be a good citizen with the rest of them…”

  3. Slow Learner March 7, 2014 at 8:21 am

    Haha, interesting take! Not quite what I intended, though I see how that interpretation is more natural for what I actually wrote. I see him as more of a successful businessman who becomes obsessive about space colonisation; he sells off his businesses to build a ship and recruit colonists; he spends all his personal wealth on completing construction; he then runs scams in order to fit the ship out, and skips out of the solar system just before the whole edifice comes crashing down…

  4. Firedrake March 7, 2014 at 9:25 am

    Ships, whether sea or space, always need more money thrown at them.

    (You might find Nevil Shute’s book Ruined City interesting.)

  5. froborr March 7, 2014 at 12:35 pm

    I’ve decided to start posting fiction to my blog on Fridays. First is a scene from the story idea I mentioned last week: http://mlpomo.blogspot.com/2014/03/introducing-fiction-fridays.html

  6. depizan March 8, 2014 at 1:01 am

    *ponders rescues*

    Perhaps one reason I’m stuck on my fanfic is that I’m not satisfied with how the rescue should go. Granted, pretty much any way rescuing someone can go is cliche, the question is what cliche do I actually want to use?

    – Rescuee wants to be rescued
    – but was escaping and initially mistakes rescue for guards
    – but doesn’t want to go back and finish the weapon
    – but they now have to get the prototype back, which is elsewhere

    – Rescuee does not want to be rescued because
    – he has changed allegiances to his captors…or wasn’t captured in the first place
    – he doesn’t want to finish the weapon for anyone

    Suggestions? Comments? Possibilities I’ve overlooked?

  7. Slow Learner March 8, 2014 at 3:12 am

    @Firedrake, that does sound very interesting, I’ll have to try to find a copy.

    @Froborr, an interesting piece! I was not expecting the children to end up with familiars (/elementals). I am also of course highly curious as to what the Queen is going to expect her knights to do. Reconquer the stolen lands of Ackerbucht, perhaps.

    @depizan I think something in between changed allegiance and wasn’t captured would be of interest – the form where someone was seduced/co-opted or persuaded to work for/with a larger organisation. Think films where some mad scientist is “persuaded” to work for the US Government. They are somewhere between a prisoner, an honoured guest, a prized asset, and a member of the wider organisation.
    Different members of that organisation might treat them in different ways, and depending how much pagespace this is spread out over, you can shade it from primarily honoured guest/prized asset, through member as they settle in, to closer to prisoner at the end before they are “rescued”.
    Thus instead of waiting for rescue, they are happily working away with the odd niggling doubt about whether they’re in the right place. If rescue comes a touch too early, it will feel more like a kidnapping. If too late, they will be closer to explicitly being a captive and the rescue will be harder.

    Conflict over whether to continue or abandon the Great Work will also be very interesting, but could perhaps come up more later? It very much depends on how you’re writing it, but I see the potential for a tight action sequence of rescue/escape being interrupted by soul-searching over the weapon which kills the pace and cuts the tension.

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