Thursday, November 29, 2012

Dear Characters (Part 4 of ?)

((Hooray! I hit 50k a day early! I still have about half the story to write, but I'm so happy that I "beat" NaNoWriMo my first time around! I'm aiming to finish the story by Christmas and get to at least 75k words. And whoops, I got tropes all over this entry, too.))

Dear Tavin, my missing Knight of Pentacles,
Umm... would you mind telling me where you went? Piper has caught up with the rest, but you don't seem to be anywhere in sight. Please tell me that the bear did not eat you. I knew that giving that particular animal to the elf as a pet was a bad idea...

Dear Piper, my dingbat Knight of Swords,
You need to learn some paranoia lessons from Tav! You get yourself caught in bird shape, then change back right in front of two strange men! (Okay, boys, really, although they are rather strange.) Granted they did just help you, but maybe a little caution would be a good thing? And no, the fox isn't going to eat you! Chill!

Dear Clover, the card I haven't picked yet,
Have you found your Get Out of Jail Free card yet? It's gotta be there somewhere. You really don't have to give two weeks' notice, you know. Just leave! We all know your boss sucks.

Dear Raff, my animal-loving Knight of Cups (wait, should I be calling you "Zaerin" now?),
Now look what befriending every animal in the world has gotten you: someone who's as talkative and friendly as you are. ... Actually, I'm digging this. You two need to keep talking so that you drive Seph up the wall. I enjoy that as much as you do!

Dear Seph, my defrosting ice Knight of Wands,
You have two friendly companions now. Snark all you want, they're not going away. If you can figure out where I left the orc, you'll find someone quiet to add to your team. I'd look where your elf parked the bear, as it's unlikely that Tav made his way into town and likely also tried to befriend it. He doesn't trust people much, so please keep your sarcasm to a minimum.
(And for the gods' sakes, denial much? You're going to wait until the last possible moment, aren't you? Because distracting the Idiot Hero right before the end is certainly a good idea. *headdesk*)

Dear everyone,
Well, we reached the 50k mark. And you still haven't set off for your quest. In fact, some of you don't even realize you have a quest. What gives? Your gods must be tapping their feet and looking at their watches with impatience. What kind of pawns are you? Sheesh.


Friday, November 23, 2012

My characters already have too many personality quirks...

Oh, gods, I got sucked into TV Tropes again thanks to a "Which TV Tropes Fit Your Characters?" thread in the NaNo forums. Let's see what I can come up with for my group of "heroes".

Raff, the fiery and mercurial half-elf Messenger (my Knight of Cups) - Chronic Hero Syndrome, Consulting Mister Puppet, Don't You Dare Pity Me!, Cute Bruiser, Beware the Nice Ones, Friend to All Living Things, The Beastmaster

Seph, the snarky, rather cocky human healer (Knight of Wands) - The Medic (Healing Hands), Jerkass Fa├žade, Deadpan Snarker, Martial Pacifist, Hates Being Touched, Blind Seer (Monochromatic Eyes), Blind Without 'Em, Not So Stoic, Loony Friends Improve Your Personality

And between these two Vitriolic Best Buds. ("Just Friends", I swear?)

Piper, the brilliant but flighty human priestess (Knight of Swords) - Strange Girl, Ditzy Genius, Motor Mouth, Baleful Polymorph, Animorphism, The Mind Is a Plaything of the Body

Tavin, the levelheaded (usually...) and rather reclusive half-orc (Knight of Pentacles) - I Am What I Am, Don't Look at Me, Ugly Cute, Human Pack Mule, Genius Bruiser, Gentle Giant, Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?

And Clover, halfling prophetess who kind of walked into her own cage - Signed Up For the Dental, Dismotivation, Wildcard, Fortune Teller, Screw This, I'm Outta Here, Eleventh Hour Ranger, Spot the Imposter


Friday, November 16, 2012

Dear Characters (Part 3 of ?)

((I just passed the 30,000 words mark, so I guess it's time for me to write to my characters again! There isn't anything I feel particularly bad about right now since all seem to be moving along towards the plot, so no yelling at anyone *cough*Seph*cough* this time.))

Dear Tavin, my paranoid Knight of Pentacles,
See, I told you she wouldn't mind! Now please get your jaw off the floor, get over your shock, and head home so I can send you off again.

Dear Piper, my helpful Knight of Swords,
Thank you for being you. He needed to hear that! Now please fly off already so we can move along.

Dear Clover, my whatever card you are,
Yeah, yeah, I know I've been ignoring you. That's intentional; since you're my prophet, I can't write what you see until I know what you see. Please be patient until the bird and the orc catch up. Play a game of Solitaire or something.

Dear Seph, my moody Knight of Wands,
I want to thank you, too. You're finally where I needed you to go! Hooray! Now please get to work on the elf's concussion and I give you permission to tie him to a rock until he lets that shoulder wound heal. I agree: he is a terrible patient.

Dear Raff, my exhausted Knight of Cups,
See, we told you that help was coming. Now please sit still for five minutes so you can stop blacking out! And I'm going to hold you to that promise of a banquet for your mouse; I already promised her fifty different kinds of cheeses.

Oh, and to everyone but Piper:
Can one of you guys please invent sunglasses? Or something? I've never seen so many characters in one place who can sense heat and all of you keep getting blinded by this! Come on, I mean at least two of you have gotten headaches from this so far. Learn, people, learn! If you're nice to Piper, I'm sure she'll let you travel by night so two of you don't end up with migraines again and fall into a pit or something. Sheesh.


Friday, November 9, 2012

Dear Characters (Part 2 of ?)

((After two more days of writing, it's time to write to my characters again! This time they're not getting an apology. Characters, you can all blame Seph; he's starting to get on my nerves. You were supposed to be the easy one to write!))

Dear Raff, my Knight of Cups,
I know you're hurt, woozy, scared, and angry, but please try not to go into one of your berserker rages when you feel someone try to untie you. ...Wait, scratch that. Go into that the next time you're unblindfolded because I want to see you kick some butt. However, the following time, please don't. That's your rescuer and he's already in a bad mood. (Although I want to throw a few punches at him right now...)

Dear Clover, my High Priestess (possibly; I still can't find a good card for you),
You got yourself into this mess, so stop complaining that your sleep is being interrupted by prophetic dreams. You're a prophetess and should be used to it by now.

Dear Piper, my Knight of Swords,
I know you like to talk, but slow down a little. Your new friend is feeling rather overwhelmed.

Dear Tavin, my Knight of Pentacles,
You can trust her. Really. You're not going to like the news that she brings back to you, though, but she'll help you.

Dear Seph, my Knight of Wands,
Arg, can you PLEASE just get where I need you to go? The rest are in place and you're dragging your feet. You have two gods pushing you along, a divine canine sidekick, and soon a mouse with a key. Do you get the hint yet that you're needed as a hero? And please remember to duck; your elf doesn't often miss.


Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Writing to my characters (Part 1 of ?)

((The NaNoWriMo forums are far too distracting! Today I found a thread called "Apologizing to your characters for the horrible things you do to them", which is sort of reverse to the "Dear Writer" that I posted yesterday. After the quirks, fears, and situations I've already thrown at them in the first 10k words, I needed this idea. Here are the two apologies for now.)

Dear Tavin, my sturdy and gentle Knight of Pentacles,
I'm so so sorry that I had to kill your parents off. You had the best family that I've ever written and I know you loved them very much. I know I took them away too soon and now you don't have a clear memory of them anymore. I'm sorry I gave you that intense fear of fire. And I'm sorry I'm about to kill off your foster-father. You know he's old and very sick and doesn't have much time left, so hopefully this won't bother you too much. It will be okay, I promise- you'll be meeting up with others who will also love you for who you are and be able to see past the fact that you're kinda green and have pointy teeth. That bird that's flying overhead? She'll love you most. (And she's not really a bird.)
~Meri, the writer who really does like orcs (I swear!)


Dear Raff, my brave and loving Knight of Cups (although a Page of Swords at the moment),
Oh gods, how can I even begin to apologize for the things I'm putting you through? I'm so sorry I got you cornered, hurt, and captured. I'm so sorry that you think your brother-by-oath is dead. I'm so sorry that you lost contact with your god. I'm so sorry that I'm going to have you bound in a prison cell while the crazy mage tries to pull information from your head. I'm so sorry that said crazy mage wants to play with you. I'm so sorry that you're the youngest and I'm putting you through the worst. I'm so sorry that I'm giving you your Greatest Fear, but you'll be okay. Your rescue party will be there soon. Stay strong, my elf-boy.
~Meri, the other elven Cups (and as sadistic as I seem right now, I'm not one of those elves)

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Dear Writer (from Raff)

((I found a thread in the NaNo forums where the characters write letter to their authors. I always love this kind of thing, so I'm going to be doing that while I write my next story. Here's the first one; Raff pushed past the others to go first. Surprise.))

(Not so) Dear Meri,
Aren't I supposed t'be your favorite? Ye always say I am! But the other four "heroes" (why are there five of us, anyway? Couldn't ye decide which was main?) got nice and calm introduction chapters but ye change narratives jus' in time for me. Aye, ye start me off okay, giving me a friend t'joke with and my pet mouse, letting me think everything's going t'be peachy, then immediately ye take that away! Now I'm captured and ye still have no idea how t'get the blind guy t'me so I can get rescued! Are ye throwing another random divine fox in? Where do ye keep getting those things, anyway? Hermes' Plot Contrivance Outlet and Fox Exchange?

And another thing. What's with that creepy guy pokin' at me? Ye KNOW I don't like my ears touched! If he does it again, I swear he's gonna lose that hand.

I did like how ye had me fight like a cornered cat t'keep my brother safe, but ye knew I wouldn't have a chance once ye realized those weird elves were bigger'n me. Let me at 'em one more time and maybe I'll forgive ye for letting me be caught. Maybe.

~Your spitfire Knight of Cups,

Monday, November 5, 2012

Working on a new story (and cover art!)

Wow, it's been a long time without an update here, huh? I have been working on writing, though! During a crazy few months (psst: I'm a married elf-girl now!), I've been jotting down ideas for my story. October was spent teaching myself tarot and doing research on things from seabirds to blindness (although in hindsight, I also needed to learn about horses, wagons, and boats too).

And November? Time for NaNoWriMo! I decided to try National Novel Writing Month for the first time ever and as of early on day 5, I'm at almost 7k words and am finally hitting some Plot. This is my longest writing challenge yet since Hidden Magic and The Acoylte's Map got me around 22k and 23k respectively over the course of about three months; now I'm trying for 50k in one month. Fingers crossed I can do that!

Since I'm an artist and need to always be making things with my hands (seriously, it's like some sort of a curse of constant activity), I decided that I wanted to make objects that are important to the characters in my story. This week I made the first: a green tarot bag like the one Clover, my halfling prophetess, carries. I finally figured out a title this week, too (yay! I stink at titles; previous stories had been "Meren's Story" and "Raff's Story" until they were finished and I bummed names off family and friends) so now that I had that and a tarot set similar to Clover's, I made a cover for my story yesterday:

In the Cards- cover for my NaNo

Tarot plays an important roll so that was what I decided on for the cover. I may make a new one later, once I make the objects owned by all the protagonists, and have those with the tarot cards. (And there's a reason for the picked cards being a set of Knights; that wasn't picked arbitrarily!)

Here's a better view of the pouch. I'm so glad I had this shamrock fabric in my art supplies stash since it works great for someone named "Clover"!

Green Shamrock Tarot Bag - closed

This story is going to need a lot of editing once it's done (I've never written without obsessive amounts of editing at the same time before, but those are the rules!), but eventually I'll share it here. :)