Chat log for February 28, 2005

[Juanita] Hi Anneliese

[anneliese] Hi Juanita!

[Juanita] Glad to be here. My computer tried to tell me this place doesn't exist

[anneliese] Gosh, I just hate it when that happens.

[anneliese] Hi CM!

[Juanita] Hi cm

[camidon] Howdy everyone

[camidon] What's new an exciting this evening?

[Juanita] this must be almost all of us. I don't think there's been very many showing up lately

[anneliese] We had pretty good turnout last week, didn't we?

[anneliese] (or am I confused again)

[camidon] Yes, we did

[Juanita] Sorry, I don't get to the AOL ones.

[Elizabeth] hi everybody!

[anneliese] I managed to get two critiques done tonight (yours is still in the works, Juanita)

[Elizabeth] We did have a good turnout last week. Smiling

[anneliese] Hi Elizabeth!

[Juanita] I'm not an AOL er

[camidon] oh wait, no last week. my bad

[anneliese] Last week was here.

[Elizabeth] I understand. I wish AOL allowed non-members into their chats, frankly.

[Juanita] It must be a riot. I can recall days when we needed to follow protocol

[camidon] Wait, I'm all turned around. Was I last week? I think so..

[anneliese] So do I (Nice color, Elizabeth)

[Juanita] You're right. last week was CMs chat there were the four of us

[anneliese] yup

[Elizabeth] Thanks!

[Juanita] Not that it matters....

[anneliese] Well, you have quality, if not quantity

[Juanita] What we lack in quantity we make up for in quality

[camidon] whoops. Just ignore for a few more minutes while I wake up, or rather, fall asleep, whichever happens first

[Elizabeth] lol CM!

[Juanita] great minds, eh?

[anneliese] LOL

[Elizabeth] U> Here, have some coffee, CM. I brewed it extra-strong.

[Elizabeth] "Samurai coffee" as my mother-in-law puts it.

[anneliese] We're the best...and we know it!

[Juanita] So if you want to sleep tonight, drink only half

[anneliese] Ooo, I need some of that coffee too.

[camidon] thanks I'm good now!

[Elizabeth] My coffee knocks the in-laws for a loop. Eye-wink

[Elizabeth] U> U> drink up!

[Juanita] Great! shall we start?

[camidon] woah, that smiley looks <cough, cough> constipated

[Juanita] The coffee will fix it

[anneliese] Whenever you're ready!

[camidon] sure

[Elizabeth] lol!

[Juanita] Okay

[Elizabeth] Juanita, do you have anything you'd like to say before we start?

[Juanita] This is a novel I finished right after Christmas. You guys are the first to read it because my sister, who usually reads my stuff as I write it, has been to busy

[Juanita] I don't have a title yet, but am working on that. Unlike most of my action-adverture type stuff, this is more .... I don't know what to call it

[Juanita] It's a prequel to my c-Surfer story and ends just over five years before that one begins. It took me over a year to get brave enough to tackle it.

[Elizabeth] you're a better woman than I am, Juanita. I haven't tackled anything lately.

[camidon] first, congrats on finishing another novel! Well done. And right after Christmas? What better present that a finished draft of a novel.

[Juanita] I'm going to send a few more chaps to find out if it's too corny

[anneliese] I don't know how you do it!

[anneliese] Please send out more chapters!

[Juanita] I have two more I want to start....to bad I can't quit my day job

[Elizabeth] It's certainly got a more humorous subtext than your other work.

[Elizabeth] I laughed out loud when I found out that the "assignment" was to partner one of the Organization guys

[Elizabeth] in a dance contest.

[Elizabeth] Was that your intent?

[camidon] Yes, I simply love that idea. Very funny, and very in the characters.

[Juanita] Not consciously. It had to be something very different from Geoff's expectation to have to steal something

[camidon] Funny, yet ominous at the same time. What a great form of blackmail

[Elizabeth] While still being something Geoff doesn't even want to consider doing.

[camidon] Dance with me or else...

[Juanita] also, since I had already written about Geoff (as Cory) in another book, I had a couple of pages of details I had to make fit in this story.

[Juanita] I make use oof that later, when he gets desperate enough to talk to a cop

[Juanita] He wonders how to say something like "help...I'm dancing against my will"

[Elizabeth] lol!

[Elizabeth] I'm being forced to tango!

[anneliese] LOL

[Juanita] Actually, the cop doesn't batt an eyelash. He asks, stripping, exotic or lap

[camidon] oh, very good!

[Juanita] You have answered one of my biggest questions...is the whole concept workable

[Elizabeth] roflmao!

[Elizabeth] "If it's only samba, I can't arrest him."

[Juanita] ???

[Elizabeth] roflmao: rolling on the floor laughing my a** off

[anneliese] I think it is, but you do have to work the whole context of dancing into the world building.

[Juanita] AHHH LOL

[anneliese] Else it could become too silly.

[Elizabeth] And the idea that Geoff's reputation is *shot* if this becomes public.

[Elizabeth] Maybe the Organization is fixing dance contests for some reason?

[anneliese] For an action/adventure, that is, unless you're going for absurdity and/or humor.

[camidon] I agree with Anneliese

[Juanita] You'll have to tell me if I manage that. I based on the idea of all the ballroom, latino, etc competitions that are held nowadays

[camidon] It's a fine line to walk, humor vs silliness

[anneliese] I liked that touch... could be interesting if there is a low-grav element to it also.

[Juanita] Neither action/adventure or absurdity

[camidon] My main conern was getting into that scene with Chin and Lui (love the names). The dancing blackmail good. The setup to get us there fell flat for me.

[Juanita] It's supposed to be a kid in trouble with some funny parts.

[anneliese] <== agrees with CM.

[Juanita] Yeah, I think I'll have to re-rewrite that first part. Maybe I'll start with them going into Chin's apartment

[camidon] The low-grav element, very cool possibility

[Elizabeth] It might be better to have Chin and Lui haul him in somehow, or have him abducted from a more "manly" pursuit, rather than going with Trevor.

[anneliese] Of course, there could be a dark side to dance competitions, where the organization profits, also.

[Elizabeth] Maybe he and Trevor are doing cool-delinquent-guy stuff when Geoff gets hauled in.

[anneliese] Yep... like robbing the wrong convenience store.

[anneliese] You don't rob the paying (extortion) customers.

[Elizabeth] Oooh, good idea.

[Juanita] That's right

[Elizabeth] Or they're trying to put the moves on a girl who's one of Chin's or Lui's personal playthings.

[camidon] Did anyone else have a problem realizing they were on a space station. That majorly threw me for a loop when I figured it out some 20 paragraphs in. I had to rethink my whole visualization.

[Elizabeth] I would have liked to know the setting a little earlier, as well.

[Juanita] Yeah, I better fix that....

[camidon] Good ideas! As long as I'm solidly put on a space station.

[anneliese] (guess I just assumed it)

[Juanita] great minds??

[Elizabeth] Maybe they're snooping around the low-g end of town, or something like that.

[anneliese] lol!

[camidon] I love the space station setting, btw. Therefore I want to feel it a little more in the daily life...

[camidon] at the same time, I like how the kids don't think twice about their setting, they just exist in it.

[Juanita] Hopefully, I got that more in the next chap

[camidon] Oh, that's good, the "low-g" end of town!

[Elizabeth] Good. I like your space station settings...you do a really good job of thinking them through

[Elizabeth] and showing, often very subtly, how they're different from earth.

[Elizabeth] Like the short story you did about the girl coming home to find her drugged-out mom

[anneliese] But it's not an "end", since it's the center. So, downtown??

[Elizabeth] has torn up the garden, and worrying about the extra charge they'll get for oxygen.

[Juanita] Actually, I think of the low g decks as the opposite of down town they're out on the docks

[Elizabeth] The "low-g" neighborhood.

[anneliese] Yup. Of course the docking would be toward the low-g "end"

[Elizabeth] Also more isolated and an excellent place for wayward teens to do, well, wayward things.

[anneliese] Just think of the strip-joints and such around low-g? And what kind of drinks are served?

[Juanita] Good point. I don't take them there except t go to a shop by the low- g markets. maybe I should give them and adventure there

[camidon] yes, the pefect place for <cough, cough> "wayward" activities. Great setting potential there.

[Juanita] I do have them go to the 'adult entertainment' area to do a drug delivery

[anneliese] The entertainment could be really unusual.

[Elizabeth] Have them break into the wrong store, or screw up the delivery...something to give Chin and Lui more leverage.

[Elizabeth] A low-g strip joint would be easier to do, in some ways...in low-g, clothes wouldn't stay in place without assistance.

[Elizabeth] A teenaged boy might try to get the hot chick from class into that part of town just to see what that slick little dress does in low-g...

[anneliese] I'm thinking of the barber poll stunts, etc.

[camidon] That would be an "up-lifting" experience...

[Juanita] LOL

[camidon]

[Juanita] Hi MT

[emptykube] hello. sorry I'm late

[anneliese] Hi Mike!

[Elizabeth] hi Mike! Glad you could make it!

[anneliese] Just in time to join us in the low-g gutter!

[Elizabeth] Oooh, you could even do Michael-Jordan-like moves in low-g...could make for some really exotic dancing.

[camidon] Evening, Mike! Good timing. You caught us in the middle of discussing low-g strip joints! Join right in!

[emptykube] got caught up play monoply with my 9 year old and lost track of time

[Elizabeth] Mike, we're discussing Juanita's story...

[Elizabeth] in particular, how low-g would affect adult entertainment joints, drug deliveries, etc.

[camidon] Monopoly, much more important!

[anneliese] I wonder if there could be a drug delivery system that would benefit from low-g.

[Juanita] 9 year old -- much more important

[emptykube] low g strio joints....you know there IS a reason why NASA spent a million dollars inventing a new bra for female astronauts!

[Juanita] Hold things down as much as up!

[Elizabeth] lol!

[Elizabeth] Oooh. Or maybe certain drugs are easier to manufacture, or have greater effect, in low-g.

[Elizabeth] We already know that certain compounds are easier to synthesize--and come out purer--on the space shuttle.

[Elizabeth] The same would probably hold for pharmaceuticals.

[anneliese] I wasn't thinking so much of the manufacture (which is probably a given) so much as the entertainment value.

[emptykube] let's see...heart has to work less to circulate blood. how would that effect stimulants?

[emptykube] higher dosages?

[anneliese] Might last longer in the system?

[Elizabeth] Low-g manufactured drugs might have a certain cachet...kind of like, say, a certain weed has more cachet if it comes from Maui or Humboldt.

[Elizabeth] Would probably take less time to become effective.

[Elizabeth] But some of those pharmas also speed up heartbeat..that could be a real double whammy.

[emptykube] definately cheaper to make the drugs in space rather then ship up, but would Earth based dealers want cheaper drugs floating around?

[Elizabeth] There'd probably be some real conflict between space-based and Earth-based narcotics rings.

[emptykube] also, at the risk of being too graphic, low -g allows for sexual positions impossible on Earth and might make low-g hookers popular with tourists

[Elizabeth] good point, Mike. And a darned good thing we're not having this conversation on AOL.

[emptykube]

[camidon] Ha!

[anneliese] In that vein, would tourists prefer low-g zones, while locals prefer higher-g to prove their prowess?

[Juanita] LOL

[emptykube] leave it to a guy to think of that sort of thing

[camidon] And all of this a shady undercurrent of Juanita's novel. How possitively mysterious, alomst noir.

[anneliese] (does this mean that I shouldn't post this week's chat log?)

[emptykube] I think low-g locals would stick with own...the range really is greater. Might allow for more pleasure. Gravity hinders so many good uhem...moments.

[Juanita] There's no telling what lurks in the back-water of the solar system -- or station

[emptykube] the older the society the greater potential for darkness.

[Elizabeth] There's a nice dark undercurrent you can show underneath the humorous aspect of Geoff's predicament.

[camidon] I'd vote to post

[Juanita] However, with a younger audience in mind, my boys don't get that far--at least on the book pages

[emptykube] what about disease? Would Earth touists have to be screened before they could partake of the local flavors?

[camidon] What a great anti-Star Trek theme, Mike, if there ever was one. "the older the society..." Interesting.

[emptykube] tourists.

[anneliese] I think you can give enough hints to let older audiences let their imagination run, while keeping to the YA context.

[emptykube] sorry CM...been pondering the underbelly of Humanity lately

[Elizabeth] I agree with Anneliese.

[Juanita] me too

[Elizabeth] After all, these boys are growing up fast. They're this close to becoming the underbelly.

[Elizabeth] Not a whole lot of innocence here.

[camidon] <==== agrees with Anneliese

[Juanita] Though Chin does send a girl to join Geoff in the shower

[Juanita] Geoff thinks she's a bribe. he learns better

[emptykube] they're teens...teens often think about sex...you just don't have to be super explicit.

[anneliese] There

[Juanita] Sometimes I think that's ALL teens think about

[Elizabeth] they're teenage boys.

[camidon] <====agrees with Mike

[Elizabeth] Of course that's what they think about.

[anneliese] There's the girl with Trevor at Chin's. Not too YA there, is it? (or am I way behind?)

[emptykube] well teenage boys at least...come to think of it...grown up "boys" too

[Elizabeth] Not to mention the veiled threat against Geoff's sister, and the fact that she's cute.

[anneliese] At age 13.

[Juanita] I don't know if I'd call this YA, but it wll attract some ;younger readers

[Juanita] Someday

[Elizabeth] OTOH, there are a lot of teens out there who'd know exactly what you're talking about, and may have had similar experiences.

[Elizabeth] Bit scary how much they know.

[Juanita] OTOH ???

[Elizabeth] OTOH: on the other hand

[emptykube] hmmm...just listen at any Mall on a Friday night!

[Elizabeth] I suspect younger readers would skim right on by the innuendoes. I did at that age.

[anneliese] For me, the deciding line between a YA treatment and adult would be the level of or lack of discomfort with respect to the protags.

[Juanita] yeah, or a school hallway

[emptykube] I don't even want to think about what my girls here in school hallways (shiver)

[Juanita] Anneliese, not sure what youo mean by level of discomfort

[anneliese] I think there is a big difference between talk and experience.

[Juanita] AHH

[anneliese] You can talk about things graphically, but experiencing them in reality is very different.

[anneliese] If your protags are talking, but not really experiencing, it's a younger slant, imo.

[emptykube] good distinction.

[anneliese] If that makes sense.

[camidon] One of my close friends is a elemtary music teachers. The things these little ones are saying is downright dirty. I don't think you've got anything to worry about with what you've written so far, Juanita. You strike a good balance.

[Juanita] yes

[Juanita] thanks, CM

[Elizabeth] I remember my youngest sister saying, at the ripe age of seven, phrases that would have earned me an Ivory mouthwash.

[camidon] <==== Agrees with Anneliese. Good disctinction.

[Juanita] Isn't it always that way? The younger ones get away with everythoing

[anneliese] Stepping back, however, it's also a function of how language and slang evolve.

[emptykube] as a youngest sibling I plead the fifth.

[camidon] One day a group of teachers overhead some of the boys talking about which of the elemetary school teachers they wanted to "experience" <shiver> No doubt, kids are older, younger

[anneliese] Youth, as rebellion, have to shock their elders. Then, to their juniors, it is common lingo, an no longer shocking.

[camidon] Me too, Mike.

[Elizabeth] Yeah, I think the shock factor is a major draw. If mom and dad don't (or wouldn't) freak out, it's not cool enough.

[emptykube] oh yeah...elizabeth if it ain't taboo, it ain't worth doing!

[emptykube] whatever sends the grown ups on freak alert.

[Elizabeth] Plus these two don't seem to have much parental supervision...they're depending on the Organization to tell them how a man behaves.

[camidon] Your story has certainly sparked some interesting discussion, Juanita. That's a good thing.

[Elizabeth] So their behavior will be more exaggerated, more warped, than that of a kid whose parents are paying attention.

[Juanita] Yes. And informative

[Juanita] Gets the idea maker churning

[camidon] I'd agree with that, Elizabeth

[Juanita] I also make use of the way kids can do things and show thier families only one side of what they're up to

[Juanita] Even good parents can end up with a kid in trouble

[Elizabeth] Ah. Maybe the parents are just relieved that the kids are "working" and not in their hair.

[Elizabeth] If you're already busy, it's tempting not to look too closely at what your teenager's doing.

[Elizabeth] Not looking forward to that age at all.

[emptykube] the question of young adult versus grown up adults revolves around how dark the story is. How violent, how sexually explicict. You can dance around those issues without delving into them in young adult, but should delve into them for grown up adult.

[Juanita] Since I don't care to read explicit sex, I don't write it.

[anneliese] Good reason.

[Juanita] Everyone has an imagination

[Juanita] I put out the sign posts

[emptykube] skimmimg through story as we chat, I see many places where a small push in either direction could lob this story one way or the other. The scene where Chin is bribing Geoff to dance has homosexual undertones, for example, but you skim over them nicely.

[camidon] I have to head out here. Anneliese, thanks again for the wonderful critique, seriously. Mike, i've got a critique on the burner and it should be cooked in a day or two. Keep rubbing that "underbelly" Your submission was very, very, good. Full details soon.

[anneliese] But even if you aren't sexually explicit, you still have to be explicit in your treatment of the situation.

[Elizabeth] good night, CM!

[emptykube] thanks CM

[Juanita] Good night thanks for coming

[Juanita] I guess we all should be rolling. It's after the hour.

[anneliese] Glad you could make it.

[camidon] gnight all

[Juanita] Thanks for all your inputs

[anneliese] Any final words, Juanita?

[Elizabeth] The YA treatments of sex that work best, in my opinion, are the ones that don't gloss over the experience entirely...

[Elizabeth] but mention that weird mix of lust, frustration, and complete confusion that is teenage hormonal overdrive.

[Elizabeth] Just my opinion.

[anneliese] Or do they take drugs to suppress that hormonal overdrive?

[emptykube] agree elizabeth....not to drag JKR into this, but its hard to discuss YA and not. She does a nice job of the mix you mention in the HP books.

[Juanita] Yeah. I mean you can deal with a lot of aspects of it without detailed descriptions of physical activity

[anneliese] Could help control a lot of things.

[Elizabeth] It's a space station, they could put something in the water.

[Elizabeth] Exactly, Juanita.

[Juanita] Adults drink it too. You might end up with no little people

[anneliese] I would if it was my space station

[Juanita]

[Elizabeth] Or just dope the sodas in the high-school vending machines.

[anneliese] Adults planning families would get antidotes.

[emptykube] hmm...anneliese that's interesting. Teens in a technological society, where learning fast and excelling could spell the difference between a really good job and scrapping by might need to resort to drugs or even "chips" to suppress hormones.

[Elizabeth] (Bad parent! Bad parent!)

[emptykube] There might not be time for traditional "teen" angst.

[anneliese] Could definately be something there.

[Juanita] Hmmmm, but what about the fun married or other wise paried up adults have

[anneliese] You don't have to eliminate hormones...only raging hormones.

[Elizabeth] I'm thinking hormone-suppressant French fries in the high school cafeteria.

[Juanita] Ahhh

[emptykube] a space station society would probably have strong birth control protocols anyway, wouldn't you think? every new life adds a new strain on resources.

[Elizabeth] By then they'll probably have genetically modified potatoes for all sorts of medicines.

[Juanita] there's extra taxes if you have more than two kids

[anneliese] (It's the ketchup)

[emptykube] NO GM foods on Earth, though! They're already talking about banning them!

[anneliese] Bans aren't going to work.

[Elizabeth] They'll just move the research facilities (and hydroponic growing facilities) into unregulated territory.

[Elizabeth] LIke space. Then sell the GM stuff for twice as much, since it's so hard to get on Earth.

[emptykube] Extra taxes, yes, but what about living quarters? Every detail had to be planned from the begining. Would a family that decides to pay the extra taxes be able to find adequate space to live?

[anneliese] What? You can't pile 17 children in one 4 x6 bedroom?

[Juanita] Yes. Then as now, if you have money you can get what you wnat

[Elizabeth] That would probably be one of those cases where the station refuses to help "exceptional" families.

[Elizabeth] If they can afford the taxes, extra housing, etc. they can do it.

[emptykube] grow the vegiies in space where they get to be super large, and import them to Earth as gourmet at 100 times the cost.

[Elizabeth] The profit motive is extremely powerful...

[Juanita] Like the giant french fry in whatever that commercial was

[Juanita] MT, before we all leave, did you have a problem with the first part of this chap of mine?

[Elizabeth] The giant hormone-suppressing french fry!

[Elizabeth] I enjoyed the first chapter, Juanita.

[Juanita] I'm thnking I might have to change it to start when Geoff and Trevor arrive at chin's place

[emptykube] do you mean since it doesn't state off the bat they are on a sppace station?

[Juanita] partly.

[Elizabeth] I'm thinking you might want to put Geoff in his bind more quickly...have him start off offending Chin and Lui, or making a major mistake with their property/territory, to up the stakes a bit.

[Juanita] and in part because changing might make for a faster plunge into the stroy

[Elizabeth] And make the "dance or else" threat really really stick.

[Elizabeth] I like the idea of his reputation being mud if anybody finds out he's dancing.

[emptykube] I have a full critiuqe cued to send soon. Just putting final touches on, but the speed with which you enter the story depends on how long the novel is. You don't want the reader to get bored but you also don't want to spend capital too early either.

[Juanita] It's just over 100,000 words

[emptykube] as to the knowledge of a space station, Jame Tiptree used to say you had to start a story under ground, in the dark, and never tell the reader where they are...let the figure it out

[emptykube] is it a fast paced novel, or slow? That should also set the tone of the first chapter.

[Juanita] Both. some secitons are faster than others

[emptykube] boy i need to slow done...loosing letters all over the spctrum here.

[Elizabeth] Maybe if you start in the low-g neighborhood...the setting will become clear just from how the characters move, etc.

[emptykube] good idea elizabeth.

[Juanita] there's a thought.

[Elizabeth] I like the characters and the setting, and the conflict you've set up.

[Elizabeth] It has a lot of potential, and I want to see more chapters.

[anneliese] Same here... send more around!

[emptykube] yes...send more!

[Juanita] I have a critique date in April.

[Juanita] thank you all. I'e got to go now

[anneliese] Well, I am going to have to call it a night. Fading fast in the snowstorm.

[anneliese] Glad you could make it. Great chat!

[Elizabeth] good night, all!

[Juanita] good night

[emptykube] one of the things I like about your fiction Juanita is how close to Earth you stay...lunar colonies, space stations...its always a real plus to see how you think these societies will develop.

[anneliese] Niters!

[emptykube] okay...nighters ladies.