Thursday update February 22

It’s been a long week and I think I’m fighting sickness. So, this update will be short:

  • Will to Speak has an official post! You can find it [here].
  • I’m unsatisfied with Victim’s current cover, so I’ve been sketching out a potential new one. I think I can keep my reviews on amazon if I change it? Hopefully.
  • I’ve been thinking about adding a new type of being to The Balance of Souls time point three. They’re called ‘Nimbles’ because of their propensity for agile movement and flight. Essentially, I’m thinking of making them human-like hybrids between the humans and the Pyrrh (“We think they’re human, but they have Pyrrh tech integrated into their bodies.”). Most common will probably be children, but it will be rare to hear one speak.
  • There’s a free event at the public library Saturday that I’ll be attending. It’s the writer’s edition of the small business start-up. I don’t have enough details to know what all exactly they’ll cover, but I’m hoping to get some insights on marketing. Yeah, I know I need to work on that.
  • Someone gave Victim a five star review on amazon!

Will to Speak

[Novels]

[link to excerpt]

[kindle] [paperback]

Genre: Sci-fi

Pages: 268

Word count: 63,723

Publishing date: April 22, 2020

 

Summary:

GT isn’t content with the hand he’s been dealt in life. But he has a dream: to hear his own voice on the radio. Things aren’t quite going his way when he finds himself on a long and lonely walk. It turns out that a mysterious stranger has plans for him – he wants GT to replace him in the future. Once he is whisked away, trapped inside a rocketing time machine, GT must learn to cope with the extreme uncertainty. Could this be a positive twist of fate? He gets presented with a decimated humanity and a beautiful Emalyn. (TW: panic attacks, verbal abuse)

 

Sum it up in one sentence:

A frustrated teen gets kidnapped and sent to a dystopian future where they struggle to adapt and find their voice.

 

Yes, GT is non-binary and uses they/them or he/him pronouns. Also, yes, this author (sometimes) loves Isekai anime.

 

About:

So, where to start with this one? Well, it was originally a short story I wrote for creative writing at college. Although that was about an ungendered character named Alex who entered a fantastical artificial future instead of a dystopian one. They were still taken against their will and mistaken for the chosen one. Later, I decided to rewrite it and expand on the story for a camp NaNo project. Then it was G and Natsume (two mains), but I kind of lost Natsume later. Oops. He was accidentally written out since I wanted to focus in on G. The project got set to the side, until I returned to it more recently. Now it’s just GT, but I kept most of the same side characters including Gen, Lily, and Matteo. You can see pieces of the rewriting process scattered through some of my Thursday updates if you’re interested. Yes, most of what I’m doing with it now is still a rewrite off the camp NaNo version.

That original short story is the first time I wrote an ungendered character. I wasn’t even aware of non-binary or agender as an option yet. It just happens that there was no good way to introduce the character’s gender early in the story (because of limited interactions with other characters and a 1st person perspective). I didn’t want to make the type of later reveal that frustrates me. So, I made a conscious effort not to gender the character and to mix gendered language. I did not even assign a gender to Alex since I didn’t want it to clutter my understanding of the character. GT, however, is canonically non-binary, unlike Alex who was just ungendered. Someday I’ll write a post about writing ungendered characters and link it here. Will to Speak is its own story, but it did grow out of that original one. If I can dig up the original I’ll add it to the extras page someday.

As for the title, I love the ambiguity of the term will. It also has a fascinating etymology. For example, in Victorian England, will was one of the many words for penis. No, that’s not the way I’m using it in the title. Yes, I know there’s a dominant interpretation in our modern era. But you’ll notice some historically-displaced phrases that resurface in the language of the book (specifically with Matteo and Emalyn in time point three).

 

GT’s song? Incubus Pardon Me [can be found on youtube here]

GT’s secondary song? Shinedown Second Chance [can be found on youtube here]

 

[link to excerpt]

[link to amazon page]

[link to return to novels]

Thursday update February 15

Yeah, I know today’s technically Wednesday EST, but I can take advantage of my site thinking it’s British. I have a busy day tomorrow.

There was no Thursday update for February 8 because of the Balance of Souls world descript. I finally finished it! The entire world descript has 10,703 words and fills around 20 pages of single-spaced size 12 times new roman font in a word doc. I spent a few hours typing most of that one day. Friday? Maybe. I finished, edited, and posted it the next day. The main descript branches off into 12 other posts. Whoa, that was longer than I thought it would be. Only five more world descripts to type out and a multiverse to map. I’ll get to those later. But, yes, I’m aware there are no pictures. I’ll probably add some of those eventually.

For Natsume, I am considering the title Will to Speak. The term will, in modern usage as it appears in the title, denotes having willpower and determining a choice; this is very fitting for the main character’s arc. Yes, I have read Shakespeare, so I am aware of the older use for the term (assigned male genitalia, for anyone whose curious). To me, the modern usage also denotes a deliberate and determined desire, which is also fitting to the character. I will (ha!) take the modern usage. ‘Will to Speak’ also just sounds fun as a title, but I’m going to let the idea sit a bit longer before I decide for sure.

I have two sub gigs tomorrow. First is AM preschool (I get to wake up at 6:25, or at least before I arrive). Second is just an end of day HS gig, so I’ll probably edit during it. But I also work an evening shift in the nursery tomorrow, so it’s going to be a long day. Happy Thursday everyone.

(Although, speaking of Shakespeare, there was another playwright of a similar time whose works I enjoyed enough to go looking for them on my own, but their name is escaping me at the moment. Maybe it stated with an M? That wasn’t Christopher Marlowe, but maybe I’ll randomly recall it later.)

Random trivia of the balance of souls

[The Balance of Souls]

Marrakesh, Morocco, saw an unprecedented cultural boom and revival in the 2050s, landing that time and place in the idealized lens along with Renaissance Italy and 1930s New York City. Mostly because this writer wants to travel there.

Clothing in time point three is considered more valuable the less it smells like gasoline exhaust because that means it has had less exposure to the Pyrrh.

GT in Will to Speak was originally just called G, but I changed it because of G Callen in NCIS: LA. In my shorthand I sometimes still just put G. (Also, the original title of Will to Speak was Natsume, but I accidentally wrote the character Natsume out of the story.)

This entire world descript (as of February 3, 2018) fills approximately 20 pages of size 12 times new roman font in a word doc. The word count is 10,703 words.

Pets exist through all the time points. They are still wildly-adored in time point three. If a human has a pet and has to travel, they will go out of their way to bring the pet with them. It should be noted that food replicators also dispense pet food.

I’ll add more trivia later.