Chat log for November 22, 2004

[anneliese] Hi CM!

[camidon] Howdy, Anneliese

[anneliese] I haven't checked your profile yet today...over 50K?

[camidon] Not yet. I'm at 48500 right now. I won't sleep tonight until I get there!

[anneliese] Awesome! I'm rooting for you!

[camidon] It'll happen, or I'll fall asleep on my keyboard to night, a right a million ZZZ's Add in a few sapces, and I'll reach it that way!

[camidon] How's your writing coming/

[anneliese] LOL!

[camidon] (and write) that's suppose to say

[anneliese] I'm nearly to 29K. I will be by the time I go to bed, I hope.

[camidon] Whatever works!

[anneliese] Hi rcs!

[camidon] You can do it! I'm rooting even more for you!

[camidon] Hi rcs.

[rcs] hello

[anneliese] Thanks. Obviously, I need it!

[camidon] <playing with colors> let's try this

[anneliese] Maybe in December, I'll figure out how to get better colors...

[anneliese] how did you get that color?

[camidon] I like this green; much better

[camidon] Instead of the color palette like last time, this time I had a drop down menu with choices

[anneliese] Yea, nice green

[camidon] Weird, figured you had played with it.

[anneliese] I had that drop down the first time I checked out the room...now it is that silly bar.

[anneliese] Very wierd.

[camidon] Double weird

[camidon] I take it Bob's not one for a chat about his story? Do we have any other topics, other than cheering each other on for Nano!

[anneliese] I think Bob has a conflict.

[anneliese] Unless he shows!

[anneliese] What would you all like to chat about tonight?

[camidon] I have to say, I'm rather amazed by this smiley. Some programmers just have too much time on their hands.

[anneliese] I agree.

[camidon] How are you this evening, rcs?

[anneliese] Wait until eddy gets into this one...he'll be installing all kinds of smileys.

[camidon] Any comments about the, um, slow SFWW group, these first few weeks?

[rcs] i'm good

[anneliese] <font color=#800> testing </font>

[anneliese] Nope. That doesn't work.

[camidon] So what's happening with your plot and characters, Anneliese? Are you forcing them into action, or are they forcing you into action?

[anneliese] Hard to say. A little of neither, sometimes. I'm afraid. But, strangely, things are happening.

[camidon] rcs, Have you managed to check out the sffbboard < http://www.acmfox.com/sfwwforum/>?

[anneliese] The story is one I've messed with a lot of times over the years...analogus to what Elizabeth has been doing with Marjan.

[camidon] Hey whether strangely, things are happening, or whether strange things are happening, that ain't too bad

[rcs] haven't yet, but i will

[anneliese] Just wish they would happen faster. It's a struggle to get every word!

[anneliese] You registered for the board, didn't you?

[anneliese] My word count stands at 28,993

[rcs] i think so.

[camidon] rcs, the wiki site is a little harder to digest on first take < http://www.sfwritersworkshop.org/twiki2/> but there are some interesting things there too, if you're ever super board some evening. It's a work in progress.

[anneliese] Yes, and I even fixed the links on the site, so you should end up at the *right* wiki

[camidon] Ah, the struggle, Anneliese, makes the victory all the more sweet. <wink, wink, nudge, nudge,> don't you think you can make 30,000 tonight? It's only 10pm for you. <wink, wink>

[anneliese] I will. And probably a few more. Hey, I haven't slept in 4 days...what's one more?

[camidon] Like I keep saying, Anneliese, I'm just so super impressed you've managed to make it this far with all your obligations. You do realize you'll have to send some of what you're working on to the group, if it doesn't pick up eventually.

[anneliese] Yes, I have thought about that. I'm kind of nervous about it, though.

[camidon] Yeah, there's the sleep thing. I just wouldn't do it, except for the fact that I LIKE sleeping. So many hours wasted in dream land.

[anneliese] in addition to being (probably) unnecessarily complex, it turns out to be more of a modern fairy tale than SF.

[camidon] Nervous? You? Come on, there's mostly the old hacks like me, Greg, and Mike still around. We're gentle, mostly, in a chew at your jugular kind of way!

[anneliese] LOL

[anneliese] Oh, I'm not worried about that...

[camidon] fairy tale works for me. I think Dave K's the only real Hard SciFi guy around anymore. Those are the kind he doesn't like, but if I can submit 40,000 words of young adult fantasy strange weird fiction, yours should be a piece of cake!

[anneliese] I do need someone to read it eventually, to tell me where I've gone over the top in threaded stories.

[camidon] um, then what, if I may ask, are you nervous about?

[anneliese] And also where I need to throw in a smidge of description.

[anneliese] That it makes those hoover sounds???

[camidon] You know, now that I think about it, I think the one time you tossed a story into the queue in the last five years, was when I was AOL for a few months. I'll I remember is "Frumpy Middle Aged Women" Was that the title?

[anneliese] That was one of them.

[anneliese] I think there was one before that.

[anneliese] Should I take it as flattering that you remember the title?

[eddy] bonsoir

[anneliese] Hi eddy!

[camidon] Oh dear, those nasty hoover sounds. It doesn't help that my computer is next to the vaccuum. No, no, no, we wont have any of those negative thoughts. Let's just do this to those negative thoughts right now: (haha I used it in context!)

[camidon] Hey, Eddy!

[anneliese] lol

[camidon] Probably. I'd love to read it, if you still have it around. I'm sure I missed out!

[camidon] Probably flattering I mean.

[camidon] Eddy, there's no real topic. Anneliese and I are just boosting each others self-esteem. Want to help?

[eddy] no Bob to roast?

[anneliese] When you get done pushing me for NaNo, you can push me to send "Frumpy" out.

[anneliese] No, Bob has a conflict I think. And Dave has Monday night meetings for a while.

[camidon] Sure thing, but knowing my luck, you'd send it out during one of the weeks I'll be AWOL in Mexico, and I'll miss again. I think you plan it like that!

[camidon] rcs, what kinds of things are you working on? What interests you, scifi, fantasy, horror?

[anneliese] LOL, CM, You've figured me out! I probably have it on this computer, if you really want to see it.

[camidon] <Just kidding, of course, Anneliese! >

[rcs] mostly scifi, although i have written some fantasy.

[camidon] Well, Anneliese, since the group is so slow, I'm trying to find new ways to procrastinate and I figure one of your stories would take me DAYS to finish

[eddy] Anneliese is Great, Chris is Great too! =D

[anneliese] LOL Days? Maybe hourse.

[camidon] Yeah, eddy, I was looking forward to chatting with Bob too, though I didn't expect him to show as don't think he ever has to a chat. Neat idea, his story.

[eddy] boost, boost, boost

[anneliese] I mean hours.

[eddy] anyone have experience with queries?

[anneliese] eddy is Great!

[camidon] Hey, thanks, Eddy! Keep it coming.

[anneliese] Fiction or non fiction?

[camidon] rcs, Any particular scifi? Space Opera, Cyberpunk, Military, Alien contact? Or just what evers in your head?

[anneliese] Ross, you're just going to have to jump in and push us out of your way in here.

[camidon] Not successfully, Eddy. What do you want to query about?

[rcs] i guess space opera. I haven't really thought of it in those terms though.

[eddy] fiction queries... I got the books Getting Your Novel Published & Agents, Editors and You

[anneliese] I'm a space opera addict.

[eddy] they have good examples

[eddy] maybe I could send my query to the group?

[anneliese] Why not?

[camidon] Post some on the bboard, if you think that's okay, Eddy.

[anneliese] We can pretend to be editors.

[eddy] (btw a great song just came on -- So Cold by Breaking Benjamin)

[eddy] I could do that

[rcs] that should be fun.

[eddy] or send it out as a story for crits

[camidon] or the group, that would be cool.

[anneliese] radio?

[eddy] MP3 mix...

[camidon] With the lack of stories in the queue, the might be the way to go, eddy

[eddy] I usually listen to raucous rock while I write

[anneliese] I just shoved a bunch of cd's on the computer over the weekend so I could have the headphones to drown out the tv.

[eddy] I also got things like LOTR soundtrack and some great guitar instrumental (rock, flamenco) but hard rock gets me going

[camidon] Have you had time to read those books yet? Are they any good, eddy?

[anneliese] That sounds like my kind of music

[camidon] It seemed like it worked, Anneliese, you piled out the words last weekend.

[anneliese] raucous rock, that is...call me a metal head.

[anneliese] from 9am to 2 am, CM. I'm toast now.

[camidon] Classical music all the way. Large orchestral symphonies. And things like the LOTR soudtrack as well. Just listened to that today actually.

[eddy] Agents, Editors and You is really good, it's a great inside view of the publishing world, unfortunately that is its focus and so it's lacking in the writers side of things, e.g. queries and synopses (although it does cover them well enough)

[anneliese] Currently listening to "Black Gold" by Soul Asylum on indefinite repeat.

[anneliese] My play list is pretty sick.

[eddy] The Marshall Plan for Getting Your Novel Published covers synopses and queries very well, although you have to ignore the self promotion throughout (references to his other book and his agency)

[camidon] Well, as long as you're not burnt completely, Anneliese. Eight more days until this crazy challenge is over

[anneliese] Sweating bullets to get done in time.

[anneliese] I'll get it done.

[camidon] I've always had a problem with buying writing hand books. I don't like the idea of paying other people to tell me how to write. These guys make money by WRITING about how to WRITE. Seems too paradoxical.

[eddy] the two books together have given me a lot of terrific info, now I'm not so scared of writing a query and synopsis and canvassing agents

[anneliese] Sounds like they were worth it then, eddy.

[eddy] well, these books were written by agents and editors, so you can look at it as a way of them building up their own business by encouraging writers

[camidon] I have faith in you, Anneliese. I'll pull you across the finishlin if I have to bombard you with messages on the hour every hour for the next week.

[anneliese] I wouldn't be able to do it without you, CM.

[camidon] Well, that's good, eddy. As long as they are usfeful. If they have useful tips post them on the bboard (that way they're free!) I'm so cheap...

[eddy] it's encouraging... they talk about how the writers are the most important link in the chain, they work for the writers, they love to discover new writers, build careers, etc.

[eddy] I'll try

[eddy] I got them along with 2 other books through the Writers' Digest Book Club -- 4 books for $20

[camidon] And you make it so much more fun for me. Have you made it to any in person NaNo writing events, Anneliese?

[eddy] then you get nagged for 6 months to buy more, but you don't have to

[eddy] supposedly

[anneliese] Nope. And there was one real close to me Saturday morning. I did attend one online chat, but all they talked about was RPG

[camidon] I drove a 100 miles at met with 5 people in Fort Collins. Very fun and insirational group. Made me feel good for days, I plan to go to a wrap party with even more FOrt Collins folks sometime those first few days of Dec.

[camidon] That's not a bad deal, eddy, as long as you can tune out the nagging.

[anneliese] If I can get less behind, I will try to get to one...they have about 3 or 4 each week. And nothing in CT is much more than an hour away.

[anneliese] CT is beating LA in the word count challenge, though.

[camidon] The people on the Fort Collins bboard have all been very active, about 10 people total, and it motivates me to write more and better. It does depend on those involved those.

[camidon] I was just going to ask you about that!

[anneliese] I'm psychic.

[camidon] Don't let those bayou boys beat you. You're certainly doing your part!

[anneliese] LOL Is your group in a challenge?

[camidon] No, but I think they'd go for that idea. If I do NaNo next year, wherever I am, I might sugest it.

[camidon] Do you know how that challenge got started?

[anneliese] It's kind of fun. I don't know how it got set up.

[anneliese] All I know is that the groups started out with roughly the same number of NaNo participants.

[rcs] gotta go.

[anneliese] Glad you could make it.

[anneliese] bye?

[eddy] guess he had to go

[anneliese] So, eddy, any writing projects?

[camidon] I think he's shy.

[anneliese] It's hard when you join a well-established group.

[anneliese] Have to lurk for a while to get your bearings.

[camidon] But hey, we had a new member do a critique! Hallelujah

[anneliese] Yea, YAY!

[camidon] yeah, it took me FIVE years to fit in, and that's only because 9/10 of the group left!

[anneliese] LOL You always fit in!

[eddy] I'm still working on my sequel to Bob, although that's on hold while I start running on the agent treadmill

[camidon] no, not really, but I was shy at first too. I think you're right, Anneliese.

[anneliese] We only saw one chapter of Bob...right?

[eddy] my goal for this year was to write a first draft of a novel... I did that, revised it twice, and so far I have 50k words on a sequel...

[eddy] yeah

[anneliese] Wow, eddy. That's terrific.

[eddy] I also have a couple maps and a couple dozen pages of character sketches and such

[camidon] You've written more of Bob?? Send some of it out! It's about time the group started reading some good writing and not the shlock I send out! (oh, there I go again, being negative)

[eddy] I find world building boring though

[camidon] Congrats, Eddy. That's awesome. How long is the novel?

[eddy] you have great ideas, Chris, and no end to them -- they just need polishing

[camidon] Can Anneliese ues a few of those 50,000 words if she needs a few extra come Nov 30?

[eddy] the novel is about 100k words according to Word, it's 170 single spaced pages

[anneliese] I have to admit, if I didn't have my notes, maps, drawings, and character database, I'd be lost with this story. But, generally, I hate working that hard at world building.

[eddy] my Dad and my sister both loved it

[eddy] yeah I make a list and quick sketch of every character I introduce

[camidon] Way to go. It's so cool to hear about others finishing long projects. Bruce was good that way. Makes you feel better about your own long projects.

[anneliese] I have given up on sharing work with relatives...actually, they won't let me.

[eddy] after a while, that amounts to a lot of pages... I also like doing author to character interviews with the major characters, to find their "voice"

[eddy] I like to make a unique voice for every character

[camidon] I admit I love world building. Creating whole realms that never before existed. I'm a map junky. I stare at them for hours and hours and hours. If there's an atlas in a car, I'm good for the rest of a trip.

[anneliese] Wish I could make myself do that...guess I'm just to lazy.

[anneliese] Oh, I love maps, too!

[eddy] I used to be a D&D nut, and I loved world building, but I lost interest for some reason, now I just want to write

[camidon] That's a good way to do it, eddy. Voice and character is, in my mind, the most important thing.

[eddy] character interviews are a great way to get to know your character, and they make a great reference if you find your characters are sounding the same

[anneliese] I used to love doing D&D worlds...couldn't get players, though.

[camidon] When I was in my teens I was a huge fantasy junky with all the maps and drawings. Then I realized how awful most of it is, with notable exceptions Tolkien being the father of it all.

[eddy] "fiction is real life amplified"

[anneliese] My hubby reads a lot of fantasy...most of it is to derivative (of Tolkein) for me.

[camidon] D&D nut? You two huh. Haven't played in years. Got into a scifi rpg called Battlelords. Did some writing for them, but nothing has come of it, yet.

[anneliese] Haven't done any D&D in many, many years.

[eddy] well, people insist on comparing all fantasy to Tolkien, but hell he basically created the genre, outside of unique stories like Beowulf

[anneliese] I've heard of Battlelords, but given up on games mostly.

[camidon] An 800 word book is not good reading just because ou get 800 words for 7, 8 bucks. Most of it could be chopped into a decent 300 page read. All fluff and crap.

[eddy] why not compare all sf to Bradbury? or Asimov?

[anneliese] True, eddy. But fantasy has always existed.

[anneliese] For a while, a lot of sf was very derivative of Bradbury and Asimov.

[anneliese] And that generation.

[camidon] yep, that's the truth about Tolkien. He is the High Fantasy creator.

[eddy] fantasy has really branched out, there is epic or short and sweet, humorous or serious, magic or no magic, armies or no armies, weird races or no weird races, etc.

[camidon] I suppose you copy from the best. Some write the same old drivel, some find something new and breakout.

[eddy] something like Timeline was really more fantasy than sf, since it was mostly set in medieval times

[anneliese] I think the best fantasy I enjoyed (relatively) recently was by Mary Gentle. Rats & Gargoyles.

[eddy] Conan!!!

[eddy] pure escape fiction!!!

[anneliese] Right!

[eddy] I ate those up as a kid... sure they were mostly the same, like Hardy Boys, but hell they were enjoyable

[camidon] And there is a big difference between fantasy and high fantasy. Elves, dwarves, medieval weaponary in High Fantasy, whch is what most of the fantasy market is these days. That excludes everything else, that is bascially not real, ghosts, mermaids, twilight zone stories.

[eddy] Conan is one enduring character

[anneliese] I read space opera...addicted to Andre Norton.

[camidon] I've only been reading children's fantasy as 1) I'm writing in the genre, 2) it's the most open to creativity--Harry Potter, Phillip Pullman, and dozens of others in recent years. Very little of it this High fantasy stuff.

[camidon] Never read any Norton. If was to pick up one book by him, what would you suggest?

[eddy] have you gotten the Star Wars DVD set yet? my favorite is the "making of" DVD, where we find out how close Star Wars came to not happening at all, and how much Lucas smashed the current genre of movies to make a truly enjoyable space opera and make history

[anneliese] I've considered writing YA fantasy...it's where you can have real fun, I think.

[eddy] YA?

[eddy] oh nm

[anneliese] Hard to suggest. She's been writing since the fifties. Her claim to fame is probably the Witch World (fantasy), but I love the old campy stuff fromthe '50s

[camidon] It's worth a shot. I've written 200,000 words in my 4-book Elevator series. It's so much fun just to let your imagination go. In the world I created, I could do that.

[anneliese] Except that it probably wasn't campy then. The first novel I read was the Beast Master, and I was hopelessly hooked.

[eddy] Lucas studied classics to make classic heros -- the young and eager kid, the old mentor, the cocky sidekick, the comic relief (droids) and made a simple story that was supposed to flop, but became a big (!) success

[camidon] YA = Young Adult

[camidon] oh. nm

[camidon] need to read everything before I respond! lol!

[anneliese] The story I am writing now, probably started out in life as a YA story, but it is definately much darker now and more adult.

[camidon] He did a number with those original movies. Too bad the new ones are awful imo.

[eddy] well the lines are blurring, kids are reading older now

[eddy] no more Pollyanna!

[anneliese] True...my MC's were never Pollyana though!

[eddy] I think the real distinction is, kids want to read about kids about their own age, so if you have a story with kids and it's not too dark, it could be YA

[anneliese] Good kids up to bad things.

[camidon] To true. I found out from my SCBWI group that one of the books up for the Book Award of the Year, or whatever it is, is a YA book called Luna, which is about a boy who wants to be a girl.

[camidon] oh SCBWI = Society of Childrens Book Writers and Illustrators (what an awful acronym)

[eddy] I can't think of any story I read as a kid that wasn't starring kids, except Hardy Boys and they were at least perpetually young adults

[anneliese] My MC is just out of college, this time around, so a bit old for YA

[eddy] until I got into Stephen King that is, around age 10

[eddy] my first book was The Stand, and I was hooked.. then my writing style for the next 15 years looked suspiciously like his

[camidon] All righty. I've spent another wonderful hour chatting, but I've have 1500 more words calling my name tonight. I should jaunt.

[eddy] still does, actually

[eddy] yep, me 2

[camidon] 50,000 here I come!

[anneliese] Same here...but I'll be happy with 500 words more for tonight.

[anneliese] Should I post this chat, or not bother.

[eddy] yeah

[eddy] shows we had one!

[anneliese] Will do, then.

[camidon] Much fun everyone. Have a good week. Keep going, Anneliese!

[eddy]

[eddy] nite all

[camidon] gnight

[anneliese] As always, wonderful chatting with you guys.

[anneliese] Niters.