I’ve just posted the latest update to Alayne’s Story over on the WoW-Europe RP forums. This week we see the characters get pulled into the struggle against the blue dragonflight. While this is happening under the whole Ulduar story-arc, it’s a pretty major divergence.
I’ve also made some major strides on The Unexiled. Next week’s update on that should be considerably longer than the previous weeks’ updates have been. I’d say that, once I finish the next few scenes, I’ll be about 20 to 25% of the way through the major story. Still quite some ways to go until the end but I am cautiously optimistic that I will finish the whole thing within the next six months — life, time, raiding, and all permitting. Once it’s done, I’ll do about three months of revision on it before I start trying to track down an agent and get published.
And now, back to work on The Unexiled!
I’ve just posted the latest update to Alayne’s Story over on the WoW-Europe RP forums. This week finishes up the Halls of Lightning storyline and begins Diversion Number One from Ulduar.
This is where things may start getting really muddled. I wrote a LOT of this in August and early September when I was still in shock from my brother’s death. I’ve tried to go back and correct some of the repetiveness but I know I missed a few things, probably. I finally had to stop trying to fix it all and tell myself I’ll hit it when I’m in the break between Parts III and IV (yes, Alayne’s Story is going to continue on into Cataclysm and beyond, probably).
The latest round of The Unexiled will go out tonight as well, tomorrow at the latest. I’m having trouble with a scene and just have not been able to progress much on it so the update will not be very long. Fair warning. However, I’m taking a “mental health holiday” from work next week (vacation days I have to burn up before the end of the year) so I will hopefully get more work done on it after I clean up the disaster area my husband and I call “home.”
And now, back to work!
I’ve just posted the latest update to Alayne’s Story over on the WoW-Europe RP forum. This week’s update takes the characters inside the Halls of Lightning.
In other, semi-related news, I finally got in a Yogg-Saron kill this week. Also, work is progressing quite well on The Unexiled. I had hung myself up a few days with worry over how long the tribal section is running. In the end, I’ve decided not to worry about it and wind up hamstringing myself. It’ll run for as long as I need it. Once I get the draft completed, I can go back and rework it to shorten it as needed. For now, I just need to let the characters flow, do their thing, and I can give it a critical read when it’s ready for one. I think that’s what has held me up on the previous attempts. I was always trying to edit and write it at the same time. Let me explain.
Writing and editing are not the same thing. What I do with Alayne’s Story is to just write it out. I don’t do any editing other than a quick pass for typos (which I don’t always get) and grammar (ditto). I have done what I call a “critical read” of Parts I and II. I printed it out and read them over the course of a few days, making notes on things I intend to go back and change or rewrite. However, I want to get Part III finished before I do that. Why? Because editing is not writing. Editing is revising. Editing uses different modes, different methods, and has a much different flow to it. Since I was never planning (and still am not) to publish Alayne’s Story, I never let myself get caught in the write-edit trap. However, since I am planning to publish The Unexiled, I fell right into it several times.
Why don’t I edit Alayne’s Story? Because, once again, limited amounts of time. And, it kills the flow of writing Alayne’s Story. I should have realized this a while back. I do work as a copyeditor. My job involves editing and proofreading. When I edit something for a publication, I’m reading it much differently than when I proofread or just read. I’m not really certain how to describe what goes on in my head in these processes but I’ll give it a try.
Writing: I’m just letting it flow. I correct obvious typos, grammar errors, and logic issues but I don’t worry about it. I always have the meta-story in mind but I focus more on each scene as a stand-alone.
Proofreading: I read more carefully, looking for unobvious typos (your for you’re, its for it’s, etc) and grammar errors. I also check for better ways to say something (balancing between repetiveness and sounding like I ate a thesaurus).
Editing: I take out my scalpal, my butcher knife, my axe, and a blowtorch and attack the nuts and bolts. Here, I’m looking for anything that weakens or fails to strengthen the story. Every scene is judged on if it does what I needed it to do. If it doesn’t, I rework it. If it won’t fit, I cut it. If I don’t like it, I rewrite it.
For my old short stories, I could write one day, proofread the next, and edit the third. For something long, though, I can’t do that. It really is a flow thing and once I get started looking at something in “edit mode,” I find it difficult to get out of it and go back to “writing mode.” So, if you’re reading The Unexiled (or Alayne’s Story), you’re reading a very rough draft. I am refusing to let myself do much critical reading of either so that I will not talk myself into editing them before they (and I) am ready to take that step.
Okay, lesson over. Back to work. My job is not going to do itself.
I’ve just posted the latest update to Alayne’s Story over on the WoW-Europe RP forum. This week starts the beginning of the Halls of Lightning expedition.
Tonight’s draft of The Unexiled will go out after my Ulduar run, probably. I need to finish up the scene I’m working on and make some edits to a few previous scenes. I may cut out part of the scene that was giving me so many problems because it’s running longer than I would like it to.
And now, back to work!
…yeah, I’m stubborn. Giving up just isn’t in my nature.
Finished. Now, if you’ll excuse me for a few minutes, I am going to go splash some cold water on my face.
Those of you reading The Unexiled will find out why in a few days. For now, all I have to say is this:
How in the name of all that is holy do other writers write these scenes without melting?
Okay, frustrations vented. Now back to humiliating myself.
Edit: I’ve written friggin’ research papers that weren’t this difficult to wade through!
Edit 2: Seriously. I once wrote a twenty page research paper on whether the study of history was a science or belonged in the humanities and it wasn’t NEARLY this difficult!
Edit 3: Fuck it. I’m breaking out the liquor to see if that helps me just get. through. this.
Edit 4: And my husband has vetoed the use of alcohol. Dammit. ><
Edit 5: I can totally hear Tucker’s voice (a character from Red vs Blue) going “bow chica bow wow” in my ear whenever I manage to get a single sentence down and I’m not even to the worst part yet.
Edit 6: Right. Forget it. I can’t do this. I’m going to cut here and go get my ass kicked in GH5. Implication without outright saying ftw!
Well, once again, I’ve gotten better at managing my time. Instead of using my lunch break to do pointless dailies or level yet more alts, I’m using it to write. I managed to clear 3.5 out of 5 pages for Alayne’s Story today. Hopefully I can finish up that update tomorrow during lunch and spend the rest of my time on The Unexiled.
I wouldn’t say I’m getting back on the horse just yet, though. I still have my days. I’m not raiding nearly as much as I used to. Plus, everyone at the office is getting sick so I’m just waiting for my turn to catch whatever it is that’s going around.
At any rate, hopefully I’ll be able to keep this up. Now back to work.
Edit: Finished this week’s update! That means that I can spend the rest of my time on The Unexiled!
I’ve just posted the latest update to Alayne’s Story on the WoW-Europe RP forums. This week finishes out the Halls of Stone encounters and leads us further onto the Ulduar story arc.
I’m really hoping that Blizzard will soon have all the story info for Wrath of the Lich King available. I’m really looking forward to writing the Arthas encounter only I want to make certain it fits what is actually in the game. One of the most frequent criticisms I got about Part II was that the Sunwell encounters did not match what was in the game. This was mostly because my guild was not able to do those encounters. I’m hoping that one day we’ll be able to go back and do them so I can rewrite those sections.