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Andor is actually really good. I'm shocked that I now care about a Star Wars thing. Watched the ending scene of Rogue One and actually felt a little sad about it now, with hindsight. Also, Michael Giacchino is a fantastic composer when he wants to be.
a fun thing I learned is that taking any sort of meeting with Hollywood people during the WGA strike is considered scabbing and bars you from membership for life.
spreading the word cause there's definitely a bunch of predatory types looking to trick people into crossing the picket line atm [https://www.wgacontract2023.org/strike/strike-rules](https://www.wgacontract2023.org/strike/strike-rules)
It's so weird. In the last few months my writing has drastically increased in quality and I'm finding that it's...*actually good* now, (at least in my opinion, I haven't shared my recent work with anyone). I'm rapidly approaching 25 so I'll just attribute it to my brain becoming Fully Developed and unlocking my latent potential.
Either that or my standards have just dropped drastically without my realizing
You know what's really frustrating? The fact that I keep having dreams where I'm a ghost in a big Victorian mansion or whatever, and I can *never* go through any freaking walls no matter how hard I try. It's like my own brain is mocking me.
I have similar dreams where I have superpowers that always fail when I try to show people.
That could actually be a funny weakness for a superhero story lol.
The moment I write a few chapters of fantasy, I get an urge to write sci fi. The moment I write a few chapters of sci fi, I get an urge to write fantasy (but something else, not what the previous project was). It's so damn annoying.
Solution: Science Fantasy
Won't work, I'm the type of person who would cry (figure of speech, I actually wouldn't but you get what I mean) if I write something too scientifically inaccurate (FTL is the only large scientific inaccuracy I can accept).
I’m writing fantasy, and the science urge is still so strong that I’m trying to make pyrokinesis obey the laws of thermodynamics. I’d struggle even more with full on sci-fi, I’d recognize the need for FTL but still find myself trying to explain it. I’d recommend reading The Lost Fleet Series, the guy who wrote it had some physicist friends, so he tried to incorporate speed of light in the space battle scenes as accurately as possible, accounting for delays in the time it would take to see events or communicate, increasing uncertainty about the position of a moving object as relative speed increased. He uses wormhole type things for FTL, though like every other science fiction I’ve ever read, no explanation is attempted for artificial gravity technology.
whats your current solution to the pyrokinesis thing?
My system is pretty limited, main concerns were where does the fire/heat come from and what happens to the heat when they cool something off. The pyrokinetic’s fire is produced by converting negative emotion into fire/heat, so assuming you have the ability, the amount of fire you can produce depends on your ability to experience and direct strong emotions, the user is further limited by how long they can maintain the emotion as it’s being drained. I thought about from there making it so they could only cool something off by dispersing the heat, but that would have messed with the heat shield system, so I gave them the ability to sort of “ground” the heat in the same “place” where they convert the emotions to heat/fire. I decided their lives were already hard enough, so grounding the heat doesn’t feel like sucking negative emotions back in, sort of like how grounding electricity generated by burning coal doesn’t turn the grounding point into coal. Limitation for the latter being that you can’t ground heat and produce it at the same time, sort of like how you can’t inhale and exhale at the same time. I think it helps keeps the MC from being OP, he’s really powerful in his world in this area, but fire can’t solve most of his problems.
Reading the Dune series, just finished book 4. No one warned me that they were going to get stranger and stranger...
lol right?? I was originally not invested enough to read past the first book, but then I heard what the plot of God-Emperor was and...I had to. (I did actually stop there though. Not interested in the Brian Herbert ones, tbh.)
Dune is either a sublime masterpiece or a horrendous snoozefest. I never heard someone be just meh on Dune. In real life, a writing teacher who is into sci-fi told me that Dune is a horribly written book which should only be read for its ideas and its impact on the genre. I'm currently reading literary, but I'll give Dune a try eventually.
I'm pretty meh about it, so there you go. But I did fall asleep a couple times while reading it, so maybe I'm not as meh about it as I'm claiming to be. The first one, which is the only one I've read, is structured strangely to me with regard to how, as I remember it, the entire first half of the book felt like inciting incident territory
Well, the original is one of my favorite books ever that I’ve read before in the past, but I agree the sequels so far are all over the place. (All of which I’m reading now for the first time)
I agree with your teacher, it’s very sloppy as an actual story rather than a collection of ideas
I've just about wrapped up Villette so here are my rankings of the Bronte books I've read.
1. The Tenant of Wildfell Hall: 9/10
2. Villette: 8.2/10 -- with experience one would think that Charlotte would have learned to dial back her reliance on coincidences -- bit of an edit: this book is just about as fantastical as a Disney fairy tale, but in the opposite direction -- the ending has me very tempted to lower the score -- Joe Abercrombie did better with Last Argument of Kings -- a bummer ending is a fine art -- a sentence can change the reception of it entirely
3. Jane Eyre: 7.7/10 -- Jane is very bland, the coincidences are infuriating, and I wish the gothic/fantastic elements would have been left out
4. Agnes Grey: 7.5/10 -- solid throughout but thoroughly unimpressive
I intend to read Wuthering Heights sometime this Autumn. Looking forward to it? Not particularly as it's not really my style of novel. I'm still going to read and judge it as fairly as I can.
Was gonna catch up on books that have been collecting dust but I also am doing a caffeine detox so I’m incredibly dead mentally and physically rn
Lately, every short I write is between 700 and 1500 words. I like them more than the older, but I have no use for them. Contests and public calls are asking for 2000-3000.
Dunno how I ended up here. I usually had to cut to meet the restrictions.
They have good rhythm and bear a nice punch in the end, so I find it difficult to water them down.
what genre are you writing in? there's a number of calls for flash fiction as well.
idk, sometimes I just have shorter ideas. I don't worry too much about it tbh.
The genre varies, but they are in my native language anyway.
I don't worry. It is more of realisation. I think that the shorter spectrum suits me more, but on the other hand I can't do much with them. Anyway, maybe sometimes the ideas are shorter as you said.
Ahhhh ok, I assumed English but unfortunately know nothing re other language creative fiction.
Yeah, I mean you could extend it by adding more subplots or whatever, but that’s not always satisfying.
I've got the opposite problem. 4000 is on the shorter side for me and it's so hard to bring them down past that point without completely gutting them.
I had the same issue and then i went on the opposite side. Is it phycological? Is it the influence at the time? Maybe it's my lack of experience. At least I feel more confident with the result.
It's probably the first time I can share my work without any hesitation. (Until I read something incredible and go on a spiral again)
Cliche answer but simply reading short stories of the longer ideal variety should help with getting a sense of what goes into stories of that length / how to craft stories that needs that length to be told instead of being any shorter.
I read enough I think, but in general you are quite right. It's more of a venting kind of post.
Every short I write, I like it more than the previous one. I just can't use them anywhere and It feels I am stagnant.
Share drive just ran out of space. Why? Probably has something to do with hundreds of files of every possible type dumped into the parent folder, some of which haven't been modified since 2004.
Fuck's sake, there are roaches in every single cupboard and I'm opening them one-by-one. I'm not surprised that they're there anymore, I'm surprised the world hasn't run out of roaches with how many of them are here.
Someone hire this guy for profiling criminals, because he's extremely good at painting the picture of the typical r/fantasywriters dweller. https://www.reddit.com/r/fantasywriters/comments/138xmpm/should_this_person_be_a_fantasy_story_writer
Got a story in the back of my head. Pls help me with it by asking a question making a suggestion or...idunno. poke the idea with a stick so more stuff comes out.
MC is a devout priest to a religion dedicated to a god of balance, wisdom, truth, and knowledge. But he's having a crisis of faith and can't feel their presence anymore. Gets more frustrated which makes him less even less in tune.
Eventually, due to a sign from his God or a push from a higher ranking ng priest, he goes off to some small town to do... something. Maybe offer wisdom or perform rituals or help with some specific religious thing. But there is a conflict in the town between an ethnic group that worships a nature god and the rest of the townsfolk? Maybe a town girl fell in love with a nature guy and her family are unhappy? Maybe someone disappeared and the nature folk are suspected?
So maybe MC needs to figure out why he was called to the town? And the nature culture follows their own head priest who dismembers sacrificial animals in front of a bonfire and wearing a set of blood-tipped antlers?
How did he sense the presence of the god in the past? What does his god uphold about truth/wisdom beyond that it's good? Did he know about the nature people before reaching the town? How do the nature ppl feel about his religion? Btw the setting reminds me a little bit of The Wicker Man
Compared to other priests, he's always had more trouble sensing the presence of his god. I think he had some early experience in his worship that left a deep impression, and he's been chasing that again ever since. Spiritual experiences with this god typically involve intense experience of genius, where someone suddenly sees all the connections between things and understands it perfectly. That, along with experiencing a sense of peace and reasonable distance from chaos and emotion.
This god is a figure that is seen as a source of common advice for navigating life, all the way up to enlightenment. People dedicated to it often show their devotion by keeping records, researching, and sharing knowledge. People also pray to this god in relation to issues regulating impulses and emotions: lashing out in anger, alcoholism, paralyzing anxiety, etc.
I am not sure if MC new about the nature folk beforehand. It depends on how/why he was sent their in the first place.
For the nature folk, their incarnation of the god they worship is tied into their identity and their lands. They don't expect outsiders to have the same religious beliefs. While I don't think they tend to give much thought to other religions, those that do would probably react to MC's god like this: "Balance, wisdom. All well and good, but that's not what life's made of. Such a staid, cold set of values."
It is pretty Wickermanish. While that wasn't the inspiration, I did belatedly notice all the similarities!
thanks for the brainstorming questions!
Is the nature cult ethnic conflict a set-in-stone story element, or are you just looking to tell a story about a priest with waning faith who goes to a different setting than his usual one, where he must resolve a conflict?
Yes, it's set in stone. It's very much about him encountering this religion that is different from his own.
So we have this balance priest, right. He’s been off his rocker lately because he’s been observing the unbalanced nature of the world around him. The food chain isn’t evenly distributed, geological features aren’t perfect shaped or spaced out, and so on. He wonders how the deity he worships could make the world this way. So balance religion top brass decides he needs a change of pace. They want him to see the truest balance of all: the balance within a well-cultivated mind. They send him out to a monastery wherein he can find oodles of folks who have achieved their own balance. He sees the merit in this idea, so off to the monastery he goes. But before he gets to the location proper, he stops by a tent city on the way. Weary from traveling by himself, he needs a place to rest, and some kind folks take him in. When he wakes up and interfaces with one of them, he explains his job, his quest, and then asks what their job is. They look at him all dodgy-like. Holy man, they say, I trust you. If you want to see true balance, come with me. Balance Priest is led to another tent, wherein sits a clockwork machine (idk what kind). The local explains that they and their fellows are artificers, makers of machines. It suddenly makes sense to Balance Priest why they’re living in such a temporary fashion: machinists of all kinds draw the ire of the magical community, so they’ve had to move around to avoid persecution, no matter how primitive their machines may seem to us in the audience. (I assume you had a magical or pseudo-magical setting in mind.) Our priestly mc is not a practitioner of any outward magic, so he’s not especially put off by what he learns. However, it transpires that a nearby community of nature cultists has caught wind of these guys setting up close to their turf (maybe one of the little artificer kids made a clockwork bunny that got loose idk). The two sides enter a one-sided conflict, where the artificers want to mind their own business and the nature dudes want them gone. (Should probably introduce some device of immediacy to the story to prevent the question of “why can’t the artificers just pack their stuff up and leave?”) Our mc is so cool that he can understand both sides, so he takes it upon himself to diffuse the conflict. He’s not used to being in positions like this, but it’s the truest test of his ideology that he’s ever had. The outward mannerisms of the nature folks puts him off, what with all the blood and antlers and such, but he’s drawn to their views on the world. He wants their perspective on the nature of his inner struggle. Wants to know why nature seems so random, so arbitrary, so ignorant of finer things like balance. Their answer will make or break his conviction in his religion and possibly influence his work as a go-between for the two sides. Maybe he gives in to the random nature of the world, and simply abandons the traveling artificers to the mercy of the nature folks (who have boxed them in or something—see my earlier comment about the need to manufacture immediacy). He might also become so convinced of his righteousness that he arbitrates like no arbiter ever did before. Idk you take it from there, this is a complicated premise.
you really went above and beyond here! thank you for your thoughts.
Hm. You've got an interesting set-up. I'm gonna poke it like requested.
Maybe the MC was sent over to work out a balance between the nature god worshipping ethnic group and the townsfolk? Maybe under a pretense of helping the townsfolk with some issues of ignorance.
Tbh the idea of a priest under the god of balance, wisdom, truth, and knowledge having to work out a social conflict between an ethnic group and a majority could work out very well. It's pretty much the exact kinda guy you'd want to send out for a peaceful resolution.
Is the nature god part of the same pantheon as the knowledge god? Different one? Perhaps it's a lesser and/or local deity? A foreign god? How much would the priest of the knowledge god know about the god or the nature folk?
Tbh I can't think of a good way to prod the conflict besides emphasizing cultural differences. Like, sure the bonfire ritual may look primal and therefore scare the hell out of the townsfolk, but surely there's a good reason why they do it and the townsfolk just don't understand it. Maybe some tradition of the nature folk is coming up that looks especially strange to anyone outside of the culture, and the townsfolk are being Not Great about it? Maybe one person crossed a major boundary of the other's culture, and the resulting social conflict is getting out of hand?
Half of that might have just been me rephrasing half of what you said, but yeah. There's some prodding. Feel free to disregard, and have fun with your writing!
Thanks for your multipronged poke!
You're right, working out a peaceful resolution is totally the kind of task this kind of guy would be tasked with.
I think the are part of the same pantheon, sorta. They worship their own specific, local incarnation of the pantheon nature god. He has knowledge of the more general version of the god and how it is worshipped, but not so much this local version and interpretation
The idea of someone violating a taboo or the like is a good one. may nab that idea
Does he have abilities beside being a priest? Like does he have anyway of defeating the cult?
Nope. That is, he's basically a Normal Guy, albeit a fairly well-educated one.
Man, im going nuts looking for a good sub to discuss books. This sub seems pretty okay for writing advice, but it seems like all the major Book subreddits are either extremely juvenile and narrow-minded or spiteful and elitest.
Yeah, I'm having the same issue. I'm not super active but half the time I lurk around, see some posts and decide that I really don't want to become a regular user.
In person I suppose.
The outline of my WIP looks like a Big Mac except it’s missing the two meat patties
My WIP lacks Big Mac because it's a lesbian story.
I decided I don’t like my generic vaguely European fantasy setting and want to change it up. I don’t plan on getting really hardcore about one specific culture with their customs and beliefs, just more the food, climate, geography (with modifications), plants, animals, that sort of thing. I’m stuck between Asia Minor or southern Central America, thoughts? I might need to say they managed to make a more heat tolerant llama through selective breeding and brought it north
As a white American terrified of getting something wrong when portraying another culture, you could try making up your own culture. But that might just be my hang up.
Making up your own culture is just more interesting in general.
If you make up your own culture or species, they will either be perceived as black people or Jews.
From my research, the llama subspecies seem to get more cold tolerant, not less. They’re the only pack animal native to the americas. Guess I could just go with Asia Minor, the Turks are considered white on the US census so racism accusations can’t stick too hard. I just don’t really like reinventing everything for my fantasy worlds so the reader feels like they need to keep an encyclopedia on hand to keep track of what things are supposed to be food or animals
I meant you could possibly make up a llama subspecies . Like the, uh, "swamp llama", known for its, light, fluffy wool that is both waterproof and breathable in the heat. Or something.
You should definitely do what you want and what's best for your story, but for future reference, I find you can make a fictional culture much more comprehensible if you just give stuff really on-the-nose names.
Coollama, a llama that stays cool
Wow something here in Serbia has snapped, there has been ANOTHER mass shooting. This time, a 21 year old got into an argument during a football game with other youths, so he went home and came back with a fully automatic weapon. 8 dead, 13 wounded. He even killed novice cop who was younger than him.
It's been like 6 hours and the government has no idea where the shooter is, anti-terror special forces have been hunting him all night. He had a car, by now he could be anywhere. This has now kinda overshadowed a bunch of smaller incidents in our schools yesterday. A girl slashed a teacher and another kid at a private school with a knife. A kill list was found at a different school. And elsewhere, a kid pulled out a toy gun after the moment of silence in honor of previous victims.
This is some book worthy urban fantasy material right here. If I was really superstitious, I would honestly think some kind of demon has been unleashed across the country...
**EDIT:** They caught the shooter eventually and he told the cops that he shot up those people because they "disrespected" him. And he's also a neo-Nazi apparently. Yaaaay. Our president has had to hold yet another emergency press conference. He was totally livid and to my surprise, his usually theatrical performance filled with dramatic pauses has... cracked. He had no pauses this time and he pledged to disarm the nation and deploy organs of law and order en masse into the streets. The shooter's extended family, which sheltered him, has been disappeared by counter-terror units and anyone who expresses any kind of "support" for the shooters online (even if they simply like the wrong thing) will be jailed too. He also rolled back his previous assertion about lacking cops for schools - the government will train a thousand new cops in the following months to secure the schools.
Oh, and he promised that the kid shooter will never see the light of day again, while lamenting in passing that pesky European human rights conventions prevent him from reinstating the death penalty. -_-
The shitshow continues...
Going from 'yay making effective responses!!!' to 'hello human rights violations!' incredibly quickly.
/rj literally 1984!!!
/uj literally 1984???
>Going from 'yay making effective responses!!!' to 'hello human rights violations!' incredibly quickly.
The president was dead serious fam. There was a lot of outrage yesterday on social media about some random teen girl on TikTok who made a clip joking about the shooting. I woke up today to find out that she has been arrested and her parents will face charges for "disturbing the public order". Yes, that is a crime. And so is "spreading panic" (courtesy of the COVID pandemic), but if they applied that one consistently, they'd have to shut down basically all major media outlets and jail hundreds of journalists. I guess that was the point - these laws are meant to be broad as shit and flexible to no end, that way you can arrest whomever you like when it suits you because tens of thousands of people are technically criminals.
Americans do not appreciate their freedoms enough. Especially the First Amendment.
i hate, i hate, i hate that instead of enjoying writing all I can think of is what I am doing incorrectly and my imaginary audience. I used to write for myself and now it’s all about getting approval from others. I can’t get in touch with my own writing and it makes maaad. (I am not even showing my writing to anyone, it’s ridiculous). I feel like I should let this hobby go and focus on other things, but it makes me sad, because I liked it. I even like to think I was good at it. And I am back to square one with nothing. Sorry for any errors, English is not my first language.
Write for yourself first and those who like it will follow.
i want to enjoy writing for other people
The “getting in the best shape of my life to have more energy to write” is interfering with actual writing.
Use google docs app and dictation on your phone to work on your rough draft on the treadmill or stationary bike. The interruption in normal breathing pattern will just up the cardio intensity
EDIT: Why the downvote, I used this to write nearly half one of my rough drafts. I can also now hold my breath a lot longer, which is great since I enjoy free diving
Thanks, now the other gym-goers will think I'm fully psychotic.
Happy to help!
I mean that’s just a very specific writing workflow mixed with a specific exercise where neither effort is getting full attention, which would bother me.
Just offering a way to go from zero attention to writing to partial attention to writing. I find that the more days I go without giving it any attention, the harder it is to get back into it, but not everyone has that problem
ya gotta do like I do, pump iron near my computer so in between sets while resting I write words down. That's the wrist and finger workout, dawg
Every 100 words written is another set of bicep curls
Today I wrote something for the first time in what feels like months. It’s only two notebook pages so far but it’s *something*, you know? It’s got me thinking about redrafting a story I haven’t worked on in a while, tightening up the plotting and making the mood more intimate.
Does anybody know if there’s a market for a sapphic vampire escaping an abusive relationship? (there’s more to it than that, but like. that’s probably the core of it)
> Does anybody know if there’s a market for a sapphic vampire escaping an abusive relationship?
I will send you my physical address, my credit card information, and my social security number so that I can receive a copy of this book as soon as available
i am that market
that’s all i need!
Does the following sound unrealistic?
A new and brutal ruler comes to power and decides that he wants to solidify control over his own region, and eventually conquer the country to the north. His plan is to go to each of the smaller and nomadic tribes, kill most of their women and children, and tell the survivors that either they can also die, or they can go to the northern border, and at the appointed time, all flood over the mountainous border, and whatever treasures, land, or people they capture are theirs to keep. He then makes the same offer to the criminals. His long-term plan is that either this horde will defeat his neighbors, then his army will go up and kill the remains of the horde, putting it fully in his control, or his neighbors will manage to survive, then his army can go fight and defeat their weakened army.
If the regional administrator of the northern country fails in his duty to watch the border and spy on the northernmost part of the southern country because they’d been at peace for so long, is it too implausible that this attack could take the northern country by surprise?
More likely they'd go into the north and swell the ranks of their army until it comes crashing down like an anvil. If he kidnapped the women and children he could maintain control of them. If he drove them north, with nothing but their families and their own lives, they'd resettle or possibly take new lands by force. The worst possible thing he could do is leave them with nothing left to lose and then let them go.
I think it makes more sense if it's framed as him just trying to drive them off his land and into the north, hoping they will sow chaos.
Killing the women and children seems like to much, imo. A bunch of men with wives and children depending on them are more likely to take an option that will give them a chance to survive and protect their families, like fleeing and moving north. If an entire clan's women and children are slaughtered, you've got a bunch of angry men with nothing to lose and an enemy that has committed an unforgiveable atrocity against them.
I guess some things I might wonder about as a reader if a story did this:
* What's to stop the warriors from seeking revenge? You have all these angry, armed, nothing-to-lose men sitting around waiting to attack someone they have no particular beef with while the person/nation they hate is at their back. Why wouldn't they just decide en masse to go get their revenge? Especially if this is a culture where honour, blood feuds, manliness, etc. are important.
* Even if the plan works, would it be all that efficient? These nomadic warriors aren't likely to let their wives/daughters/mothers/etc. be slaughtered without a fight. So the evil nation spends a bunch of their own manpower to slaughter their neighbours, their neighbours lose a lot of their own men in the fight, and then who's left?
That being said there are some precedents in history that are a bit like this in some ways. Sometimes a group will invade another's territory simply because they're being forced out of their own. So, the evil nation could weaken their neighbours by pushing a bunch of the nomads out of their lands. It wouldn't be a "all you men go sit there and spill over the mountain at the appointed time," though, so much as a "oh look, suddenly all these nomads are trying to invade our territory and bringing all their women and children with them." There are also ideas like paying off the nomads to fight their neighbours, or demanding tribute in the form of fighters/slaves that can be sent as cannon fodder.
Really, it all depends on what your book needs and what you're trying to show. The biggest question readers would have, I think, would be why all these men don't try to get revenge and instead go along with what the person they hate wants them to do. If you can show why that's the case you'll probably be fine.
Depends on the state of their signal intelligence. You can do a lot of wild shit in secret if you have just invented the radio.
Not sure how people would feel about helping a guy who murdered their women and children to conquer something, but it can go either way.
The idea is that ruler doesn’t let these people know they’re conquering it for him, it’s more phrased as “I want you out of my land, you can either die right here or go take over this other place I don’t like and go back to living your own barbaric lifestyle, just stay on what will be your side of the mountain range.” They already had more of a Viking culture, constantly raiding and skirmishing with neighboring small groups and towns, so it wasn’t a stretch for them.
The story is actually set in the northern country about eight years after the invasion starts, and the MC is more tasked with restoring order among the surviving civilians than the actual war, so his understanding of the situation is patchy. I don’t plan on info dumping, I just want to make sure the setting and premise are coherent and won’t make the reader say “wait, that doesn’t make any sense” if they think about it for a few seconds.
What stops the people he fucked over from seeking aid against him from his neighbors? This plan could easily backfire.
People don't tend to leave their territory that easily, especialy after the enemy does something like that.
Problem is who he’s sending. It would sort of be like if small bands of MS-13 started showing up at the Nicaraguan border saying the Honduran government had started killing their families and driving them from their homes towards Nicaragua. The Nicaraguans would either believe it’s a ruse and the young gangsters came to get a foothold in Nicaragua and start tormenting their towns, or the Hondurans were just finally trying to deal with their gang problem and not being very neighborly about it. Either way, they’re not going to let the MS-13 members into Nicaragua and are unlikely to create and mobilize an army on the words of some notorious gang members, let alone go to war over it. The displaced members of MS-13’s only options are try and unite their constantly warring cells in a very short period of time to face off against the larger, well-organized Honduran forces, or try and invade unprepared Nicaragua and hope they can disrupt and destroy before the Nicaraguans are able to create and deploy a sufficient army.
Fair enough, but still, I feel like a lot of the tribes would decide to hold their ground.
If you had a choice between fighting a known enemy, and fighting an unknown one, most people would choose the former.
This isn't writing related but I feel that it has a profound spiritual connection to the issues this sub deals with.
Someone posted to r/askmen the following question:
# If you could turn back time what would you wish for?
I experienced fits of laughter typical of those suffering from Kuru for the next dozen minutes or so after reading.
Don't put money in the stock market back in 2008...
I would wish that the US never abandoned the gold standard
Guys... there has been a school shooting in my city. Belgrade, Serbia. *This is the first school shooting in the entire history of Serbia.* A 13 year old boy showed up to his elementary school with two handguns and shot 16 people, killing 9 on the spot. His face and name are on Daily Mail right now. I must admit, things are feeling quite surreal right now. Like when COVID was first declared a pandemic and soon afterwards the government ordered the first curfew. Our president is going to hold a public address soon. Like when COVID insanity began for us - 15 March 2020. I have that date committed to memory. I guess this one is for the history books too.
I feel like bad things are coming. People are confused, scared, and angry.
Anything and everything is being blamed for the shooting - the Internet, tabloids, bullying, Russia and Wagner kid camps, Youtubers, Tik-Tok, celebrities, criminals and mafia, Western values, video games, poor mental healthcare, guns, lacking discipline in schools, children rights, and a couple of things I missed.
It's a shitshow here.
**EDIT:** The president wants to lower the age of criminal responsibility to 12, ban all violent or "immoral" content from traditonal and social media, and institute mandatory periodic drug tests for all students in the country. But hey at least video games will still be legal and he has ruled out flooding schools with cops because apparently there aren't enough cops in the country for that. And now he's attacking transgender people for some reason and wondering if maybe he shouldn't force his left-handed kid to write with the right hand... ;_;
My country doesn't even have easy access to guns and we having a bunch of cases of attacks like that in schools the past months. Its awful. And we got from blaming videogames to new laws being approved to regulate internet as politicians seem fit.
I'm so sorry to hear that. Even where I live, where it's so...normalized I fucking hate to say, when a threat was leveled against my school it was probably one of the most frightening days of my life. A whole day of sitting in the same classroom, then the SWAT team came and *patted down the students.* I swear, there was just something terrifying about seeing a guy with an assault rifle next to you, masked up, while some guy in armor and mask runs a finger around your waist. We're scared about the would-be shooter, but here's a guy with a military rifle who might as well pop you if you twitch.
Just asking if someone was gonna do it, on the fact that we shouldn't even be here right now. They found a gun apparently, but I don't even know the details really, I hardly read the news, barely even at that age. There was an odd kind of atmosphere in the classroom of boredom and fucking around for like six hours until they finally let us go.
When COVID passed through, I felt like those big shootings of the 2010's were of the past. The events, the media response of "video games did it!" and the "talk about mental health!" craze, let's not even get into the politics of taking away military weapons and the asinine nature of even suggesting that someone's semi-auto boomstick is a gun designed for war or dear god someone who has never shot a gun before speaks on guns, and WORSE, doesn't like guns or killing, is on the same tier as saying a slur.
Then school went back in person, and it's the same fucking bullshit again.
It's really a hard thing to grapple with. Even when in high school, my friend told me that people thought I was the "school shooter" for wearing a black hoodie, being shy, and listening to death metal in my headphones while I walked the halls looking sad, because I was. All of this is so fucked, to everyone in the school.
Sometimes the school shooters aren't the only fucked individuals in these situations.
>Even where I live, where it's so...normalized
Well guess what there has been ANOTHER mass shooting overnight, before I managed to respond to your comment. So it's obviously going to get normalized here too unless someone does something fast.
Thank you for the kind words.
But I don't know what to say anymore.
The worst insult I've ever been subjected to was that I seemed like the type to shoot up schools. I know it was just the first funny-sounding thing that popped into his dehydrated mustard seed of a brain, I don't care.
I have dedicated my adult life to being a barrier between them and helpless people. I worked for years to be hired into a place where it's the most basic function of my job to confront an active assailant. I've done it for free at my church since I could carry a concealed weapon. Everywhere I go, I go prepared because I know most of the people around me are not; on the off chance that it might fall to me to be last, worst surprise of some sicko's life, and because the most effective, end-all solution to an active shooter will always be to shoot them in their fucking face.
That r\*dditor is now the only resident of my blocklist. This is not a joke to me, and anyone that takes it as a joke is sick. It's bad enough that most *entities* (school districts, corporations, etc.) don't take it seriously as evident by the half-measure, feel-good bullshit they throw out, open mockery is something I will not abide. Whether it's at my expense or someone else's, it comes at *all* our expense.
I’m really struggling lately to remind myself that at this stage I’m just writing for fun and that I don’t need to take it that seriously. Related to that, I’m also having a horrible crisis of confidence because even though I know I have more than enough experience at this point that I should be confident I know how to actually *do* the work I keep getting intimidated by the thought that I’m just not talented enough to pull any of my really interesting ideas off.
The intimidation can be real. But here is a question? If it’s you’re idea, who else can truly have the talent to write it besides you? You already know you can do the work, you just gotta hammer at making the idea work. If that makes sense?
Currently reading Godkiller. It came out in January of this year. Anyone ever read it? What did you think? So far I think it’s ok.
I haven't yet, but looks interesting. Pros and cons? Should I read it?
The pros is that the prose is good and not unnecessarily flowery, the pacing starts off fast, and the world seems interesting with how the gods work since they are created through belief and prayers; nothing new with that trope, but it works a little different here cause being a god is illegal and you’ll can get executed for being one.
Con is the setting is a bit hard to imagine. Locations are not really described aside from a few minor details so I imagine it’s your standard medieval European inspired. Nothing wrong with that of course, but even a setting inspired by Europe should be described cause Europe is a diverse continent with lots of cultures.
So I’d leave the reading choice to you. Don’t want you spending money then regretting it. And this is just a partial review. I’m not done yet, so take it lightly.
Whelp, I saw it. Someone on arr writing used The Phantom Menace unironically as a good example of story structure. The movie that had professions instead of characters. The movie with Jar Jar Binks.
That movie (most movies) belongs nowhere near a writing forum, but at least it gave us Duel of the Fates and one of the best lightsaber fights in all of Star Wars.
\>incredulous that someone used The Phantom Menace as an example of good story structure
\>counter-arguments is that the movie had bad characters
Please see my earlier comment explaining it further.
I don't think I've ever thought about the story structure of The Phantom Menace before. Maybe it's not the best movie, but even with all those flaws bringing it down, is it not possible that it could have an okay structure?
I totally get that it's probably not the best example out there if you want to be taken seriously. I just don't understand what those gripes you brought up have to do with the structure
It's not an example for good writing in general, and its absurd to use it as one- especially when the first Star Wars is much better for story/plot discussions.
A big problem with Phantom Menace is it doesn't actually have main characters. It has people with professions who do things. That makes it hard to ascribe a story structure since so many plot beats deal with character choice, development, and motivation. The closest it has is Amidala's change in view of people different than her (which only really shows up in the latter half) and Anakin's change from slave to... accidental hero? But those things are buried in cold politics and pretty battles.
The whole story is mostly an excuse to get Anakin off Tattooine and to start Palpatine's rise to power. Everything else is just cardboard people doing things to prop up the elaborate battle scenes. It's an SFX promo for Episode 2. It's just not a good example for writing, honestly.
Is Qui-Gon not enough of a main character? He’s a pretty simple guy as a result of his ascetic lifestyle, so I’ll grant you that he doesn’t exhibit any big emotional highs or lows, but I disagree that he can be boiled down to a stock character representative of his profession alone. The other Jedi that we see in the movie are characterized as monk types who stick rigidly to their dogma. They perform their role in enforcing good as a matter of course, but there’s no fervor behind it, no real burning emotion. You say they’re stale characters, planks of wood, even? Congratulations, you got the point. We see a little more to Qui-Gon as a consequence of spending some time with him. He has a compassionate side to him that is not exhibited in the others; he’s supposed to be on a mission to end the conflict on Naboo, but he gets sidetracked by the plight of Anakin and Shmi, resolving to at least get the boy out of slavery if he can’t save them both. He didn’t need to help Anakin—he chose to. The podracing sequence that follows is the film’s way of empowering the child audience. (Lest we forget that younger kids were the target audience.) Is it a shallow nod to Ben-Hur? Maybe. But kids who watch the film will invariably be taken by the idea that a world of speed and dynamism is as open to them as it is to adults (this is reinforced later in the film when Anakin takes out the Trade Federation ship, but with much more serious stakes). I admit the possibility that I’m romanticizing this aspect of the film as a consequence of my own nostalgia, so I’ll digress. We move on, with some stops along the way, to Qui-Gon bringing Anakin before the Jedi Council. He acknowledges that Anakin isn’t a prime candidate for training based on their established criteria, but he sees potential in the boy. When they refuse Anakin, Qui-Gon asserts that he’ll still take the boy under his wing. This is subtly a major thing. We see that Qui-Gon possesses a comparatively independent spirit relative to his compatriots, which makes the audience sympathize with him. His devotion to Anakin is important because it’s the first time the boy has had anything close to a father figure. He was a virgin birth—Episode III comes back to that idea—and Watto was just his boss, his owner. He loves his mother, but he’s never had a father. So Qui-Gon adopts a second archetype; he’s not only a noble warrior, but also a benevolent father. This is another thing meant to appeal to the children in the audience, I’d say. (The fatherly aspect of Qui-Gon is reinforced in his interactions with Obi-Wan, though I admit that they aren’t very dramatic if that’s what you really want to see.) The loss of Qui-Gon at the end of the movie is convenient for Palpatine, who has his own designs upon the boy’s mentorship. Anakin, having had a father figure for the first time in his life, doesn’t want to be without one again. We see this in the subsequent films, where he’s super receptive to Palpatine because the latter plays upon that desire. It’s all very much set up to come full-circle in the course of the trilogy. Maybe you think that makes for a dull first installment, and you’re entitled to that opinion. I just think there’s more to it than many people are willing to see.
TL;DR: I apologize if you think I’m wrong or I’m seeing things that aren’t there. I just think Qui-Gon is enough of a character that he can’t be dismissed so easily, and the same goes for Anakin. Phantom Menace is legitimately my favorite Star Wars film and there’s multiple dissertations I could write about it.
Edit: I’ll additionally concede that A New Hope is a much better film to use as an example of plot than Phantom Menace. It’s the hero’s journey model exactly, so it’s a good film to use as an example. I maintain my opinion that Phantom Menace is not an example of a bad plot, however. If there’s anything about the film that can withstand objective criticism, I honestly do think it’s the pacing (though many would probably disagree with me on that point).
I see your point
>is it not possible that it could have an okay structure?
It didn't, though.
I've been back to work less than an hour and I already have a headache. I guess that's what happens when you condense 1.5 weeks of bullshit into \~30 minutes of email reading.
Meanwhile, what the fuck happened down there VVVV
Yet another just4votes alt was what happened.
Someone said people shouldn’t be allowed to write about sensitive subjects
I am unsure if you're kidding
I was there, someone linked the interview with Tamsyn Muir, author of Gideon the Ninth, a somewhat popular fantasy book. And she complained how people tried to "cancel" her for some fanfic she wrote. I never thought people treat fanfic seriously but here we are. And I think the person who linked it had a stance "how dare she write fanfic about those awful subjects". From what I understood between the lines the "awful subject" was something that happened to her in the past and she wanted to vent.
So the twitter mob assumes that someone writing about something traumatic is exploiting people that went through said trauma, outragedly ignorant that the author went through said trauma themself.
I think I already wrote a brilliant dissertation likening such behavior to the Salem Witch Trials (if they survive the hanging, they're a witch, if they die, they were innocent).
Ka is a wheel, and it spins me right round baby right round.
I tried to look on unddit, lol. I guess Reddit doesn't allow it anymore
It seems like a drama... over a fanfic she wrote?
so, I've written some short stories which I planned to submit to magazines but lately I've been wondering about the alternatives, or more specifically what else *can* I do with them? So far my options seem to be:
a)submit to mags
b)self-pub on sites like Wattpad/RR or Kindle or social media like Twitter/Reddit/Tumblr
d)create a site and publish them there
e)bundle several together and try and get them trad published (which I already know is a nonstarter)
f)collab with other another writer(s) to self-pub as part of a collection (which I'm 70% isn't something that happens and I just made it up now)
Is there some other avenue to take them down or is there an asterisk on one of these that I'm just not seeing?
Truthfully my main reasons for wanting magazine publication (besides just sharing work I'm proud of and think others might enjoy) was sort of to get my name out there and make it easier to get a novel or series Traditionally Published (and hopefully win one of those considerable first place monetary rewards) but even if that's off the table I still wanna explore all avenues of what I can do with short stories.
Keep writing and submitting to magazines. They will either A) Publish you and you start getting that visibility and can put your stories in collections later, or B) reject you and force you to improve your stories and become an even stronger writer.
I'd worry about your website and publishing options later down the line.
For now, this is will be the plan. It is just a little bit exhausting searching for publications and finding out your story doesn't fit their guidelines (I really gotta start writing shorter stories)
>f)collab with other another writer(s) to self-pub as part of a collection (which I'm 70% isn't something that happens and I just made it up now)
Most anthologies are like this. I've been published in two, and while it's fun to do, there's usually 0 reward (other than getting contributor copies and seeing your work in print, which did absolutely nothing for me). Still, it's an interesting experience to have at least once, and some anthologies do actually pay.
How do you find people to do this with ?
You have to watch out for open calls for anthology submissions. In my case, it was closed anthologies rather than open ones; to get into one of those, you have to make friends with writers who like organising things like that.
Where do you find open calls for submission?
I see them on Twitter every once in a while. They usually get added to The Submission Grinder as well, just search for "anthology"
thanks for the info!
I can report your comment if it helps
This whole “Fellowship of the King” fiasco seems like something that should belong in this sub but it’s happening for real
Link or it didn't happen
What's going on?
edit: I just googled it OH MY GODDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDD I FUCKING HATE THAT HIS INITIALS ARE THE SAME AS MY PENNAME (AND IRL NAME)
I'm honestly so fucking sick of seeing the same God damn replies to people who want to start writing where it boils down to "YoU wrote tHiS pOsT sO yOu'Re HaLfWaY tHeRe!!!" God it's so pretentious.
Anyone know any good writing-themed YouTube channels? I usually prefer ones that give advice by breaking down other pieces of media and explaining how each part of it works/doesn’t work.
I kinda need some comedy mixed in to keep me paying attention, I have a hard time just digesting straight writing advice, so I need the pill-wrapped-in-cheese method. I found the Diregentlemen channel really helpful, but they don’t upload those kinds of videos all the time, and I’m looking for some others to check out
You probably get it a lot, but OSP and their podcast are right up your alley. You would enjoy Red's Trope Talks series.
I swore off those after reading some of the stuff these “experts” actually write. The “literary agents” can end up being even worse, like one did a video on “tropes literary agents are tired of seeing” and one was *the hero’s journey*
> I kinda need some comedy mixed in to keep me paying attention
Terrible Writing Advice?
Found a guy called "Local" a while back, and while he's more of a screenwriter than a novelist, I found some of his stuff to be pretty good and applicable to storytelling as a whole (his 2 videos on "storytelling rules," and his videos on magic systems and dialogue were the ones I found most useful. I think he's got a fair bit of comedy thrown in, as well as some breakdowns of other works, so his stuff may be a good fit.)
The ad read on his good dialogue video was glorious
Oh my god. Just watched the video just for the ad read and it was worth it.
Thank you so much for this rec. A lot of his advice can be applied to novel writing and storytelling in general. This guy is hilarious and definitely knows what he's talking about.
I found James Somerton that way, he's a screenwriter and video essayist who mostly works with LGBT topics but if you like anime or horror? great stuff.
Reading House of Leaves for the first time.
I am going to steal so much of what I'm reading.
I at once point rented it from the library not knowing that when I came to pick it up how humongous it is and how it really can't be read any other way than by using that tome.
I could only get 100+ pages in before I had to return it.
It's not that I don't like reading, but I don't have anywhere where I can sit down with a giant book, have a nice light source and not get some kind of cramp from the way I'm craning my neck/holding the book
I unfortunately am reading 'It' by Stephen King for the first time since my story is similar enough that I probably shouldn't ignore it, but man, most King books need an abridged version. The guy rambles for days. Like I don't need this much detail about a side character whose only part in the story is her relation to a character that gets wiped out almost immediately.
House of Leaves also has a lot of stuff that arguably could be cut, but it's a great book with a neat concept
Yeah, I've heard that. I never read It, but I did begin Cujo. I remember putting it down after the aside about the red cereal poisoning. I don't remember how far into the book that was, but I remember wondering how it was relevant at all.
That's a similar reason I'm reading HoL. My last book—the one my editor reamed out—is also fiction pretending to be nonfiction. I'm only about 50 pages in, but Danielewski is doing much more with the concept so far than I did with it. Enjoying it a lot.
> House of Leaves also has a lot of stuff that arguably could be cut, but it's a great book with a neat concept
I think I get what you mean. The chapter consisting entirely of discussion about echoes dragged a bit for me, though I see what the book is trying to do and appreciate that.
Just crossed over 25k words on the piece I'm working on, so that's a nice little improvement. Every time I'm working on a new piece, I'm reminded of that quote about how you never learn how tto write a story, just the one you're working on right then. Still, it's a nice little fun way to spend a chunk of the evening
What are some things that surprised you about your story as you wrote it? As in, some idea that you didn't plan for or expect, but which you thought of along the way and it really worked out. I'm working from a detailed outline but it's been fun to see how things change when they get to the page. Some surprises:
* A couple of extra side characters, e.g. I had a section where the MC was by himself and trying to think through an issue but that wasn't very engaging. Since it's a fantasy story I just added a self-aware magical search engine ghost that took up residence in his head from the abandoned library he was in. Now I have a convenient character whenever he needs to talk to himself.
* An elf went on a five page monologue about one time she had constipation. It was actually a very endearing story that did a lot to establish her character, build the relationship between her and the MC, and it filled in a lot of details about the world. I had planned for them to have a conversation, and I knew what I wanted it to accomplish, but I didn't know "long, embarrassing, personal anecdote" was what that scene needed until I wrote it.
* Despite my planning and notes I didn't really have a good handle on my MC's personality and motivation when I started. It's really taken putting him in the story, seeing what he needs to do and think for the story to work, and seeing what kind of chemistry I could write between him and my better understood characters for me to get an idea about who that character needed to be. It's a bit different than what I was trying to go for but it fits the story a lot better.
I went into my project not wanting to do a romance element, and then by chapter 7 i introduced the protagonists love interest.
Similar here. Went in thinking, "I'm sick of all these romantic subplots, I want to write about a strong platonic friendship between a man and a woman!" and now it's more like, "Oh wait, everything I'm trying to do is easier and fits together better if this is a straight up romance novel."
Someone on here claimed you can't write YA with a male protagonist. Well that's just depressing since the book that got me into reading and writing was YA with a male protagonist. ;_; But I guess you can get away with anything once you've written the Hunger Games...
just make him hot and you'll be fine
You can write it, but you'll have a hard time to publish it (unless you're self-publishing). Also depends on the sub-genre. For example, in Fantasy there was a long tradition of weird gender segregation "male writers to adult, female writers to YA", which means male audiences will not touch the YA shelf, so it's pointless to try to publish those. Even BrandoSando wrote Skyward with a female protagonist.
I'm not really sure why anyone would need a book protagonist to be of the same gender as them, but oh well... I guess I'll stick to my country's literary scene. I've gotten quite good at cheating their asinine standards by now.
I feel it's some American tradition that anything "for girls" immediately revokes your masculinity card, lol. And then it came from the US to other countries through cultural osmosis (most media and internet center on US lens).
When I was at school, everyone no matter the gender had to read male and female authors whichever were in the canon (and we have a few "classic" female authors esp from 19th century and early 20th, heck we have 2 women with Literary Nobel Prize, one poet one novelist), we had to read Anne of the Green Gables and I found out Canadians, where the author was from, don't even have it at school. So weird.
I'm just saying, as a fantasy fan, I've seen so much crapping on YA in r/fantasy I doubt any of these people would touch a YA novel. The label itself has negative connotations to them. It's a matter of marketing, not "truth". You have to repackage it when all the guys think YA is love triangles and clones of Twilight.
That's either A. Someone who thinks all YA is romance, and romance books are 90 cis female protagonists, 5% gay cis men, 3% lesbian cis women and 2% either gay or straight trans people or non-binary people lookin for love. The straight cis man is rare. Or B. When you talk about male protagonists, people default to thinking you mean straight cis white guy coming of age, of which there have been so many (classic, best-selling, very popular) books that the market feels quite saturated. I counter that new times need new protagonists of every variety, since what it means to be a good guy (of any kind) in this world has also changed.
Case in point, however, John Green wrote three novels with male protagonists (Looking for Alaska, Katherines, Paper Towns), but his last two YA novels had a female protagonist (Fault in our Stars, Turtles). Hank Green's books also feature female protagonist. I don't remember the last time a YA book with a male main character or narrator was truly successful, unfortunately. The market skews incredibly female, and relatable stories of getting kissed by two dudes on the same night while also having to write that college essay and help your abuela find her other lost daughter just sell.
May starting off strong for my book with two page reads and 00.1 cents American according to the ol’ KDP dashboard. LFG!!!!
15 sale April after that. Cratered all of a sudden. Lol.
Lol tell me about it. I think it’s just like Mario Kart where no matter how far you get a lead, the elastic band will always whip you back. I didn’t change the frequency of my promotion nor the kind of reader I was talking to but all those “ordered/just bought” messages turned into obvious non-committals. I’m not bothered by it though. My initial run shocked me and wasn’t sustainable. All I can do is put more out there and hope for the best.
I finally settled on a love interest that my character has chemistry with. I was fighting their chemistry, how interesting the dynamic between them will be and what implications it will have for other characters. Also finally wrapping up plotting so I can finally get past 36k.
Available Editing and Revising Time…how many of your stories fall apart when you edit and revise?
This fear has led to me to become more and more of a plotter. I don't see the point in spending hours writing a story blind knowing that in the end I'll inevitably have to throw out hundreds of pages. I was lucky with my current WIP that it ends up sorta working in the editing, but yeah.
Good on you for sticking with plotting it out and making your stories work.
I'd say my short stories at least hold up to an extent when we're talking about plot or how the story unfolds. On the other hand, nothing I have ever written was something that had perfect grammar, stellar sentences, and zero fat from the get go.
Poor grammar, earthy sentences, and rich wordy fat is the stuff of drafts 1-3.
Dang, that’s no bueno…any better stories come out of it.
I'd say so conceptually speaking, but I think by then I tend to lose a lot of the excitement, and I just can't write a good story if I'm not excited about it. I gotta be quick to start when I get an idea so my interest doesn't flag too much, but being a plotter makes that harder for me.
I might just have to stick with short stories
Same boat here