It’s a short story (in parts) with one of my characters as the MC and it’s set at the HUGUS Academy from the comic.
For those of you who don’t know, HUGUS is a comic about a magic college by Wendy Z./rajamitsu, who I met through Twitter and Twitter people. It’s my favorite internet comic and you should definitely consider reading it.
For those of you who are coming here from that comic, welcome to Spiral-Bound! I’m Katie and I talk a lot about writing, dragons, books, life, and whatever other thoughts I think deserve internet publicity. I have no set posting schedule, but I’d like to post at least once a week. Hope you like it here.
And that’s all I have for today! Please go check out HUGUS. It. Is. Awesome.
More accurately, I finished the story I was working on for Camp. I didn’t meet my word goal, but I did finish a novella of 11k words, entitled The Glitter Syndicate.
It’s certainly not a perfect story, as no first draft is, but I am happy with it and it feels good to have finished a story since writing Magic Teacups.
Who wants a synopsis and snippets?
When Em, the youngest princess of her family, wants to more than a political pawn, she leaves her home to live with her disowned, wizard in training uncle. Her uncle uses the rooms of his falling down manor for tenants and magic practice. He isn’t good at magic, so the magic within the rooms had become messy and tangled up. Em is kidnapped by a person made of magic who wants to steal her magic. But Em doesn’t have magic that she knows of. Now she has to escape this madman and discover the truth about the magic everyone says she has. Being an independent adult is a lot harder than she thought it would be.
December Teresa Pearl Elia of the House of Winterbrook in the kingdom of Gloriana was no longer a princess. She was still stuck with her very long name, but since she rarely used it and usually just went by Em, she felt she could handle it.
She hadn’t expected to suddenly not be a princess, though. And the moment she stepped outside the palace walls, she didn’t feel any different. She still felt sad about the argument and shocked that it had come to her leaving home. She still felt her fake confidence and smile to the world, not letting anyone know that there was anything wrong.
If there was anything that felt new and strange, it was that she actually had no idea how to get to where she was going. She couldn’t turn around and ask for a ride to her uncle’s manor. That seemed like a literal step backwards. What was that one thing common people did in movies when they wanted a ride? Whistle? Shout “Taxidermy?”
No, not taxidermy. Taxi. Those strange yellow cars that took people places. Those were taxis.
One sob escaped Em’s throat before the piano upstairs started playing. An appropriately tragic tune. Like a soundtrack to her current feeling. Which was a bit unsettling.
Then the tune abruptly changed. It sounded like Uptown Funk smushed with Pachelbel’s Canon in D. Em cringed. It made Em no longer feel like crying, but made her feel like smashing that piano.
“Oh! And that’s Piper,” he said, pointing to the ferret. “She plays the saxophone and she’s learning the cello, but she hates practicing.”
“And I’m Gabriel, but no one calls me that twice and lives to tell the tale. Gabe is just fine. And before you ask, no I do not play the trumpet, that would be far too stereotypical of me. I do play the accordion and the English horn and if you ask nicely, I will play the bagpipes but I will not wear a kilt while doing it. Well, I might. Depends on my mood that day. But mostly not.”
“Anyway, the way the magic works is that I practice the magic and it’s not very good and it messes up,” Uncle Ashford continued. “I try to untangle it, when I have the time, but it’s a real mess and I’m just not that good of a magician. So, I bring in people to help. These people tend to end up becoming my tenants.” He gestured to the four people sitting at the table.
“That’s Mo,” he began. “She’s a doctor, who specializes in magic. And that’s Claudius,” he said pointing to the Jedi. “He’s a time traveling alchemist who happened to be in the area recently.”
He pointed to a young teenager, who was reading a comic. “That’s Bartholomew. He’s a vampire and a computer genius.” The boy looked up and gave Em a pointy grin covered in braces.
“And that,” Uncle Ashford said, pointing to pile of opaque green slime, “is Ms. Whatsit. She’s a shapeshifter. That is her natural form, by the way.”
The pile of slime bubbled. Claudius translated, “She says lovely to meet you and that you should join her for tea someday.”
Em smiled and nodded, though she had no idea how slime could be capable of drinking tea. Or having a gender, for that matter.
And that’s it! How did Camp go for you, peeps? Let me know in the comments!
Well, this is starting like many of my other NaNo events.
I write for a few days and then realize “This ain’t working”.
I think a lot of different things can contribute to the “This ain’t working”. Sometimes it’s me just being stuck early on. Sometimes I don’t know what I’m doing (yes, I used to be an extreme discovery writer. yes, this is very annoying.). Sometimes, it’s a problem with the story. The story is boring, too complex, it’s somehow in a genre i don’t like, it’s plot driven instead of character driven, etc, etc, etc.
This time, I think there are a lot of things contributing to “this ain’t working”. Very little of it is the story’s fault.
This is an old story. This was my first NaNoWriMo story, in fact. And this is a story that I can’t let go of. Or rather, it’s characters I can’t let go of. But I think I’m putting too much pressure on myself in writing it. Because I want to get it right. I want it to be a good story.
I’m scared. This was also the first story that ever got a real critique on it. I remember some of that critique. It’s not something I want to relive. I’m scared this story is just as messy as it was at first or that it will be. That it will scream that I haven’t learned as a writer.
On the one hand, I have my mom loving this story to death, like I do, and wanting me to write it. On the other, I have my CP, who I have been lowkey hiding exactly what I’m writing because I feel slightly ashamed/embarrassed that I keep coming back to it instead of finding something new.
This story may be too emotional for me right now. I’m tired. A couple different things are really stressing me out right now. I feel like I am being pursued by a bear, exit stage left, and can’t catch my breath. I’m not sure I want to write this level of emotions right now.
I’m lazy. I see that this story might be hard so I get scared and back off. (Okay, not really. I hope. I’m worried that I actually am doing this.)
A lot of this boils down to “I care too much about what other people think”. And that’s a problem I’m not sure how to fix.
I’m sick of setting stories aside. But this has been part of my normal writing process for years. If I’m not feeling the story, I put it down.
But I wonder just how much of my concern for what other people think has leaked into my writing process. I write every day because I don’t want to look lazy. I see word counts go up, up, up at a rate of 10k a day and I look down at my own word count of 200. I see those people who write 10k do other things besides write and they are happy. I write 200 and feel like it took all day and feel like I am complaining too much or am asking for too much help.
When did writing become a “I have to do this” vs. “I want to do this”? When did I stop writing for the joy of writing and start writing to “have written”? When did my world become so fast paced around me and I felt the need to keep up and my stories aren’t keeping up?
Why do I care so much about story structure? I used to be a die-hard pantser and now I freak out if I don’t know what to do next. Like at all.
I don’t know. It’s entirely possible that I’m just freaking out because it’s a good week to do that.
I’ll be fine.
This story is not being thrown out. As I said, I can’t let go of it. But it might go on hold for a while longer. Or I might come back today/tomorrow/in a week/a month when things are calmer. Or I may work on it in bursts for the next five years, one scene at a time.
My CP suggested writing short stories for a while. I think I’m going to do that. Use up some plot bunnies. Finish some stories. Not feel like I’m failing someone. I want to get back to a point where writing stories is for fun and I’m not worried what other people think (well, not too worried). I want to write something crazy and weird and not care that it’s crazy and weird.
Hopefully your Camp or even just your writing is going better than mine. How is it going, btw? Let me know in the comments!
And I am 100% insane for thinking I’m going to write a whole book in a month.
I’m really excited about this book. It’s actually an overhaul of a story very near and dear to me.
I’m not saying a thing about it, though. You know me. I keep my mouth shut about WIPs.
But if I actually get it written in a month, it won’t be long before you hear about it.
Now, as I’ve tried to make it a bit of a tradition for NaNo Events, I like to pick a movie character to channel during my writing (mostly just to use the gifs for posts). I’ve done Elsa and Jack Sparrow. This April, I’ve chosen…
Not so coincidentally, How to Train Your Dragon is a very apt book/movie for me writing this particular book. Though maybe How to Write Your Dragon Kid would be more accurate.
I know it’s been a while. Life happened. Not quite a curve ball or a lemon, but something big and drastic enough that I’m trying to figure out where and how writing and blogging and other things fit in.
I saw a cool idea for a post on Nadine Brandes’ blog. She did a post where she listed 10 truths and 2 lies about herself and the readers are supposed to guess which things are the lies.
And since I have gotten new followers and have some old ones who probably don’t know everything… I’m going to do the same.
So, guess away! I’ll post the answers next week.
I want a black cat.
I don’t like honey.
If I could pick a super power, I would choose flying.
I don’t like Twenty-One Pilots.
One of my dream jobs is writing for Disney.
I love the Throne of Glass series.
I want to dye my hair blue.
I am learning German.
I have written a rap.
I have never been stung by a bee, wasp, hornet, etc.
A few Twitter friends and I came up with the idea to do a few Valentine’s Day posts with our characters. Keep an eye out for another post in a few days!
Today I’m doing a Perfect Date post, advertising why this character would be such a good date. This character is from my WIP, Dragon Races.
Matthew Cole Cloud. He goes by Cloud or occasionally Matt or Matthew.
How does he look? Eyes, hair, any tattoos or scars. What’s his style?
Cloud is 23 and he’s 6’1″. He has messy blond hair, blue eyes, and he has a couple of burn scars because he is a dragon racer. His style is casual– jeans, baseball shirt, sneakers, though he would dress up a little for a date.
What kind of music? What kind of food?
Cloud likes just about any kind of music, but he is secretly a huge fan of musicals. His favorite is Hamilton.
Cloud doesn’t have a favorite food. He’ll eat about anything.
What’s his family like?
Cloud’s family is… dead. His mom died when he was little. His dad remarried and then he died later. And then Cloud’s step-mom was bad. It was a Cinderella-story, really, without the fairy godmother.
Why he would be a great date?
Despite the fact that Cloud is a bit egotistic at times, he is really sweet and would want to make sure his date was always happy.
Things he values:
Time. He doesn’t want to waste a minute of his life and wants to live to the fullest. He also values honesty.
What he would do for a first date?
Going out for a coffee or lunch is his idea of a good first date. It’s a safe, no pressure thing that doesn’t even have to be called a date.
Looking for long term relationship or just a quick date?
Cloud wants long term relationship, but doesn’t want to commit until he knows his date well. He doesn’t want to make the same mistake his dad did when he married Cloud’s step-mom but hardly knew her.
We’ve had our pros, what are the cons?
Cloud milks his Cinderella backstory for all the fame he can. He is constantly in media, including tabloids. If you date him, you’d be in the media, too.
Flowers , chocolate, or promises he doesn’t intend to keep?
Flowers to start. Chocolate would come later in the relationship. And promises wouldn’t be made at all– Cloud knows that promises can’t always be kept, but he wants to do everything he can to be truthful and honorable.
I have no photo of Cloud, but I have a cute song and if Cloud could write songs, he’d write a similar one.
And that’s Cloud. What do you think? Good date? If you want to do this tag, please do! Use the banner and comment with a link to your post!