Day one Nanowrimo

nanowrimo

So I started, which I guess is the only way to begin.

1,000 words was my goal for each day – I’m not aiming to write that novel in my first real attempt. I have a few short story ideas that need to be put to bed – aka finished! Or at least explored enough to say they are dead and gone.

Today I worked on a science fiction piece, which mixes politics, family disaster, war and biology into a tragedy where the main character needs to make some decisions and finds out the truth to his past… At least that’s how I have it in mind for the moment.

The 1,00 words today extended the story to just over 4,000 words in total. I have a feeling the end result will be around the 10k mark (maybe more maybe less it depends)…

I plan to let this draft sit for a while and move on to some other ideas until I come back to edit and fix any error etc.

This way I might be able to get 2 or 3 short stories banged out in November and get me into the habit of writing more regularly…

I’ll post back sometime into the month and see how I am going.

Imperium City

In order to keep my creative juices flowing a friend sent me the image below (artist linked in the image) and asked me to write 10 sentences to describe the image.

Well I wrote 10… ideas, some of them grew to be more than a sentence. Some might turn into stories themselves…

Anyway in preparation for Nanowrimo I wanted to post this and we will see if they will become more than the short glimpse they are now or whether the idea will bloom and grow into something.

lms_imperium_city_by_andreewallin-d2zt7h0

They call it the dark zone, as if there was no light down here, it was true there was never any sunlight, yet I never knew a time when there was no light.

Maybe fifty years ago the Ressha was ‘whisper quiet’ like the faded advert said, yet Tarquin always wore his headphone on the commute from work.

The hotel was nestled amongst a jumbled assortment of bars, clubs and strip joints, Jamison knew they would not look for him here, he paid cash and headed to blissful oblivion.

Imperium City. Indistinguishable from the any part of this continent. Another five blocks of different colour wearing thugs. A temporary home to drink and forget.

Jonas grinned wild and wide. The bustle of the street flowed around him as he stared in wonder at the lights, sounds and movement around him. The cab drove off, its engine’s buzz adding to and becoming one with sounds around him. Stirring from his wonder Jonas turned to find a way into Peter’s apartment.

She watched him as he hurried down the near deserted street, his eyes wide in fear. He turned and she saw the line of blood on his shirt where the arc of spray had ended. She had dropped her guard on the first one, had been distracted by the thrill of the kill. Yet she was amazed how easily she had caught up, how easy it will be to take him. She smiled again, and stepped out of the shadows. She would take her time with this one. She would feast long and slow.

“I.. I.. I got n.. n.. n.. nothing” stammered the drunk “I.. I .. GOT NOTHING!” yelling to everyone and no-one. Travis watched for a moment as the drunk stumbled and bounced off the wall of the alley. His mutterings slowing fading as the darkness of the alley closed in. Travis turned to the camera held by his assistant. “I know we can’t help everyone, but I will make it my mission, if elected, to help those we can”. His pale blue eyes sympathetic in the harsh LED light. “And done” said the assistant with a grin only a 20-something-recent-graduate can muster. “Coffee?” “Sure, my shout”. Travis looked back down the alley thinking of some way to rid his city of the filth.

It pulsed with the traffic the hum of lights and whirls of colour flashed and flared. The competing sounds from the open doored clubs merged and flowed into the street. The suited people morphed into night mode with less cloth and more stumbles. This place never slept, the movement never ceased. The city fed off the people casting them free only as dry empty husks.

Ten thousand credits. Ten thousand credits. The thought thundered through Bevan’s mind. What would he do with that much? He smiled and slipped another cred into the slot. Maybe this time. He thought. Maybe this time.

“Another quiet run.” Simone said to her co-pilot. “Affirmative” replied the neutral flat voice. Simone enjoyed the android’s minimal conversation, it allowed her to concentrate on her instrument panel. Unlike a few of her peers Simone trusted her co-pilot to the scanner. “Operative 576 identified at 40 degrees to port” the calm unemotional voice said. Simone slowed and turned the craft to the new heading. “Target is locked, confirm fire order”. “Confirm civilians are clear” Simone ordered. “Negative” came the response. “Track and wait” Simone countered the fire protocols, “Request ground forces, we are going to be the eyes for this one.” A pause. Simone saw the communication indicator light up and die. “Affirmative orders confirmed and ground crew dispatched”. Simone kept the craft aligned with the target, allowing her co-pilot to guide the ground forces in to capture position. All the while a nagging thought picked away at the back of her mind, what if the co-pilot had refused to wait, what if it had fired on the civilians? What was really sitting beside her?

Nanowrimo

A colleague, who I have done work with and I get along with in a stranger “we don’t really know each other but we can talk for ages on the phone and find out we have similar interests” kind of way, is, I found out the other day, a published writer.

I have yet to get Matthew’s book, it was self published and is available on Amazon (yes I linked to it so you can buy it!).  We talked writing and how I dabble now and again with some short stories or scenes and ideas. My creative outlet.

He asked if I was going to Nanowrimo this year, and I said I didn’t think I could.

Now for those that don’t know Nanowrimo stands for National Novel Writing Month. You start on 1 November and writing each day you can finish a novel in a month. First rough draft in any case. You can find out more and even register and track your attempt at the Nanowrimo site.

Now Matthew didn’t want to listen to my excuses, I don’t have a planned novel, I’m not sure I will have the time to write that much in a month, and many more. He just said, give yourself an hour a day and write.

Now the premise of the month is to write a novel (if you stick to the format you can and people have!). But it isn’t all about completing something as grand as that. It is about writing, about getting into the routine.

It is in fact about doing it.

So in a state of weak will I have decided to at least give it a go.

One hour a day to write something.

It could be the same story line or many stories or scenes or maybe more blogs like this. It might not change the world but it will give me something to create and maybe birth an idea or two into the world.

So join me if you want or maybe check back later and see if I post something I have created… you never know!

Life, Challenges, and Goals

So we are nearly one month in to 2016, a year on from my cancer treatment, and the third year we are in Melbourne.

I am settling in to life here, we have built up some great networks and friends. Family life is very good, my eldest is starting Grade 1 and the youngest is growing up WAY too fast. We might not get out as much as we would like (as an adult couple) but we have so much opportunity for so many adventures with the girls (even just on the farm we rent) that we sometimes forget to spent time as a couple.

Socially we have really found our place. I have been able to get back into serious tabletop gaming, including a regular Dungeons and Dragons campaign. Anji is riding semi-regularly and her budding business/hobby (hobby/business?) of fiber making (yarn, wool, and end products like knitted goods) is growing steadily.

I have continued swimming (it feels like I am slowly getting there…) Work is going well and we have achieved some great things combining the region into a cohesive focused group.

Yet there is more that I want to achieve.

I have been reading Will Wheaton and his reboot posts (check out January post to see what I mean). He is monitoring seven categories, things that he wants to change and challenge himself with. I have some similar goals that I want to achieve and I would like to explore ways to achieve them or at least give me space and time to give them a go.

  1. Exercise: This is based around my fitness, I want to increase my level of fitness, reduce my weight and generally be healthier. Now I have been swimming fairly regularly, I just need to keep that up! Goal: Swim at least once per week.
  2. Music: Practise my guitar and record some drum tracks… generally I want to be able to create some music with my friends around Australia and the World – we can do that, we just need the drive! Goal: Play guitar more often and record at least once a week.
  3. Read: In the past I did the Good Reads Challenges – which kinda fell apart last year. I would like to make sure that I read more and in more ways. Because I now drive to work I have less time to read, so I have downloaded some audiobooks to listen to on the commute. Goal: Read or listen to 24 books this year.
  4. Write: I want to do regular posts – non-fiction around my interests and work stuff; fiction – write a few short stories or keep planning that novel. Goal: Write more, a weekly post, or a few hundred words a week on fiction.

It’s a few less than Will’s but I really can’t commit to any more than that!

Now to plan it I must work out a weekly planner – fit all the work and life stuff and see where I can fit in these goals… Onwards and upwards.

Hopefully I will be able to report back on the achievements (or not) and keep motivated to achieve these 4 things… it’s only 4 things after all!

Remember This

A long time ago in a Galaxy not too dissimilar to this one. (OK about 3 months ago) a young man (yes compared to some at any rate) wrote a paragraph. He sent that paragraph along to another, who sent it on to another who sent it on to ____. Where it has laid ever since. It was suppose to come back to the young man (I am stretching this you know) where it would start the journey all over again. If we had got this under way we could have become famous writers. instead I get to use the story as a segue (what a stupid way to spell something that sounds so much different – I blame the french!) into an article on abc.net.au.
At least it was all good for something.
Interesting idea though – I guess it was very well edited… umm just thought I should read the article before I comment in case I make up something terrible and cause you all to implode or worse – believe me…. brb
OK so the article is interesting and a good little interview with a budding author and his co-writer/partner. Favourite quote from all of that was:
Keep working, keep improving your work, write for the love of it, be realistic in your ambitions, get involved in your community. I believe in writing, as with life, you get back what you give out. Passion, commitment, perseverance will be your allies.
Something I believe in whole hearted – if I try to think that anything I write may one day be turned into money earning work I get crammed up and stop. Just remembering that I do it for fun and to entertain my friends makes it MORE worthwhile then not.