National Novel Writing Month 2012 Page 43

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  • sunjumper 11 Dec 2012 15:48:03 3,197 posts
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    @Blerk
    Finally!
    Blerk I know you have children. There is that age when for some reason they turn into these paranoid little creatures and will on instinct hide from anyone that they don’t see every day? When their first reaction is to hide behind the legs of their parents? Were it needs sweet talking, international treaties guaranteeing continued happiness and a crowbar to make them move?

    That is you and your writing!

    Chapter 9
    Wait… what?

    Oh. Ah. Erm… Looks like I am proper muppet. I somehow did not notice that Chapter 8 was there waiting for me. Unread. Unloved.

    So Chapter 8
    In the fun fair the musings about bullies is in front of a picture of children being chased by vampires and other monsters. A nice touch. I liked that. One thing I’d like to not is that the protagonist should probably pay some attention to these pictures as he has never really seen a native and he might be wondering if they looked entirely human. (As far as I know they could have orange skin and blue hair so I’d certainly would take notice of anything showing what a human-a-like on this world looked like)

    Like the thing with the map and the library for example. There he is looking for alien information.
    One thing there is a strong romantic tension building between Jake and Alison. I think you may what to keep an eye on this. For Jake this should be both a relief and a source of guilt, while Allison is still distracted by her missing boyfriend/husband. The latter is something that brings potential for all kinds of drama. No matter how things go this will be emotionally rather messy.

    The library bit is great. I am as angry and paranoid as your protagonist. You effectively built the story towards (among others) this point seeing it finally happen is filled with tension.
    And followed by the same flabbergasted disappointment.

    That secret must be quite the momentous thing…

    A Jake, you silly man. Letting your emotions get the better of you and being a rebel when it will reap you the least reward. At least acting the way he does he adds to the dramatic tension. I am having some strong palms meeting face feelings right now.

    Shortly afterwards he even notices it. You know this mixture of emotional explosions followed by moments of clarity make him a rather likable character. His flaws are easily to relate to and they are tempered by his own insight.

    There is the boy again. Funny these bits are closer to horror fiction, somehow you have retained some dramatic elements from your last story. Works well.

    For god’s sake Jake! Stop telling the evil bastard about the alien! Good thing that Maxwell is to much of a narcissist prick to pick up on that.

    Now that you mention Dan. Jake is out-pubertying his own son right now.

    The bit with the son and the computer was really touching.


    Chapter 9
    The dream suddenly makes so much more sense.
    And there is Kurt again. That smug little bastard! :-D

    Jenson remains the kind of boy that might grow up to be a Maxwell, but he does deliver.

    One question just appeared in my mind. Why exactly is Jenson the misfit? At first I was not surprised they always crop up everywhere and the tendency of the misfit to give in and identify in his role as the official outsider reinforces that.
    But now that he mentions the other kids, the ‘science nerds’ I wonder who his parents are. What function do they have, as obviously Jenson here is different.

    Oh. My. God. Worst adult ever! So he tells the rebellious youth that it is: ‘too dangerous’, ‘forbidden’, has to keep his grates triumph to himself and ‘forget it’? This is the best way possible to encourage the boy to go even further with what he has been doing. It is also a serious case of black calling of kettles by pots.
    Jake should indulge Jenson a bit, build up a basis of trust and even more importantly learn from him. After that he can go and try to talk him out of more dangerous escapades.

    The time jump from the conversation with Jenson to the secondary gate is a bit jarring. What happened to the class? What did Jake tell the children? How could he explain away the book or at least impart onto them the importance to keep quiet about the entire affair?
    The cut is great for pacing but in this case it leaves out an important bit of information that has me wondering as a reader.

    Now that hacking sequence brings some Terminator 2 flashbacks. I am also amused that the guy named Jenson is hacking security doors and sneaking past patrols to places he should not go, reading things he should not read. (Oh and here is also the key to the encrypted data)

    The ‘and suddenly a jeep with four armed dudes arrived!’ trick should not work as well as it does here. Still immediate tension and drama. Chandler was right.

    And there is Kurt again! I hate that guy! (Not really)

    Fleeing. Where are the kids? Suddenly it is just Kurt and Jake. Either explain where they boys went or mention them standing around or something. Right now I am wondering what happened to them.

    A narrow escape and some strange events. Who is the target Maxwell is speaking of? For a moment I thought they might be able to track max. The way you introduce the strange weapons is also neat. IT is a clever bit of exposition and you just destroyed a source of information. Furthermore you established how this was a special place to someone in the past, which makes the actions of the soldiers look more sinister.

    Kurt the old Jedi, is also not giving Jake any reason to trust him. For all intents and purposes he is turning Jake into his pawn. So the mistrust on the protagonist’s side is entirely understandable.

    OK. You win this time Maxwell you are a tosser but more cunning than I have given you credit for.

    Again with the mind-tricks.

    Oh. Yes. Of course. The GPS satelites. I had forgotten about them. It could still work with other forms of technology. At least on a smaller scale. I think…

    Brilliant chapter!
    So far the story is full of mysteries and every step forward seems to reveal that the path is much more convoluted and longer than expected. So far so good, you are also starting to trickle in more information which is good because right now, just like your protagonist the state of not knowing what is going on is making me frustrated. But now there are some many compelling little pieces to work with.

    tl;dr Go and write faster! (And update for god’s sake. UPDAAAAAATE!!!!)
  • Blerk Moderator 11 Dec 2012 16:09:13 48,225 posts
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    Ha ha, thanks for all that, sunjumper - I'm very glad you're still enjoying it!

    Some very good points again, I have been wondering about the pacing at times. Occasionally I feel like I need to kick things forward because I'm meandering too much, but then when I do I'm often finding that it plays out weirdly. I suspect come the edit I might end up inserting a few small connecting scenes here and there to answer a few questions, or building brief explanations of the 'missing' events into the subsequent chapter.

    I think my biggest problem at the moment is time, but things will be getting back to normal at home over the next few days as the missus is going back to work (she works 7pm 'til 11pm) so that effectively gives me a bit of writing time every day once the kids are tucked in. Although there's that big wobbly religious festival thing to take into account too, of course. :)

    I am eager to wrap this story up, though. Not least because I want to finish my first pass edit of Drowner's Mill, which I've still to actually do anything with. I'm never going to make my fortune at this rate.
  • sunjumper 11 Dec 2012 16:59:59 3,197 posts
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    The pacing is mostly OK.
    You keep up the tension.
    That I am pulling my hair out and screaming at my screen to tell me what the fuck all this is about, is a good sign. And you are mantaining the tension so far.

    So no worries there. Especially not now that we are in first draft territory.
  • MetalDog 11 Dec 2012 17:03:30 23,697 posts
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    I haven't been reading feedback aimed at you Blerk, to avoid spoilering myself, but it sounds like I'm not the only one getting nagged to be less 'work it out, slackers' =D

    -- boobs do nothing for me, I want moustaches and chest hair.

  • RobTheBuilder 11 Dec 2012 18:05:39 6,521 posts
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    @MetalDog I haven't got round to reading far into others yet, but that's definitely something I'm battling with. I know what little surprises might be coming up and trying to work out how much to hint at them.
  • TechnoHippy 11 Dec 2012 18:57:38 14,718 posts
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    @Blerk

    At last :-)

    Chapter 9:

    The dream sequence is well done, has a haunting feel to it.

    Good moment with Kurt.

    Hmm, the mystery deepens. I think the people are still there.

    An excellent chapter - don't make us wait so long for the next one! :-)

    My books, contests, reviews and author interviews on my blog

  • TechnoHippy 11 Dec 2012 19:05:37 14,718 posts
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    @MetalDog

    Overtime 3:

    Is 'shuteye ' one word?

    I've been curious about a full assess since it's mention in the last story.

    "Tests can be wrong. Much easier to believe you're a liar." - Nice and cold.

    "he’d had to ‘improvise’ by mixing a little salt into boiling water, letting it cool and using this home-made saline to make up the volume lost." - Does that really work? I suppose it should.

    Another good chapter - as with Blerk don't keep us waiting for more :-)

    My books, contests, reviews and author interviews on my blog

  • Carbon_Altered 11 Dec 2012 20:30:06 675 posts
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    Chapter 30

    My pace is flagging, but I'm still plugging away. Reckon maybe just one chapter left till I get to a good place to leave it for a bit and recover!
  • TechnoHippy 11 Dec 2012 20:58:28 14,718 posts
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    @RobTheBuilder

    Nice description at the start :-)

    "Tony couldn't bring himself to try head-banging just yet, but over the course of the first hour he gradually nodded his head more and more." - Like it.

    Overall it's a nice scene. Although I think you can do a bit more with the atmosphere. Metal clubs tend to be quite noisy :-)

    My books, contests, reviews and author interviews on my blog

  • Salaman 11 Dec 2012 21:29:47 19,131 posts
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    sunjumper wrote:
    Now that hacking sequence brings some Terminator 2 flashbacks.
    Absolutely! Same here. :-)
  • Salaman 11 Dec 2012 21:45:09 19,131 posts
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    Carbon_Altered wrote:
    Chapter 30

    My pace is flagging, but I'm still plugging away. Reckon maybe just one chapter left till I get to a good place to leave it for a bit and recover!
    Ooow goody! An update!
    :-)

    This had me laughing
    he hugged his arm tight, rolling over in the zero g, spinning like a small sweary asteroid.
  • TechnoHippy 11 Dec 2012 21:49:34 14,718 posts
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    @Carbon_Altered

    Cool, a new update - something to read while I'm stuck in the office :-)

    Chapter 30:

    "Like a pissed off limpet" :-)

    Another good chapter.

    My books, contests, reviews and author interviews on my blog

  • MetalDog 11 Dec 2012 22:41:37 23,697 posts
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    @Technohippy
    I have no idea if home made saline would work. I suspect it could, but I'm not sure, so any medics wanting to pitch in with opinion on that matter, feel free.
    Cheers for the feedback and here is your somewhat delayed feedback.

    15
    I'm finding myself wondering where Dale's parents are in all this. I'm not sure how old he is though - did you mention it an I forgot in the between time? I'm surprised he didn't yank his network cable during that, but a younger kid might just accept it without fearing PC hacker rapeage =D

    Typo hunt:
    Multiplayer shooter(s)
    1 paragraph down from that 'There didn’t want any of the players recognising his voice.'

    Appropriate Typo: 'game him an edge'

    16
    You know, I was going to ask you if setup was two words in this instance =D

    Typo hunt:
    'As far food, only some tinned soup remained.'

    It's interesting, these last few chapters have slowly been turning opinion on the 'demon' from relatively neutral to growing dislike. Mikhail may have been a shit, but that was pretty low =)
    Dale is just a kid, though, that's even lower.

    -- boobs do nothing for me, I want moustaches and chest hair.

  • RobTheBuilder 11 Dec 2012 22:46:10 6,521 posts
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    @TechnoHippy thanks!

    To be totally honest I skimped on the middle bit as it was two am and I wanted to get it all down before I fell asleep!!
  • sunjumper 11 Dec 2012 23:50:52 3,197 posts
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    Tonight my brain hates me.

    Just a few hundred words. But the next chapter is finally done.
    It does give me some idea of how to move forwards and brings together two separate threads. It's pathetically short.
    But done is done and if my treacherous flesh-system shows some mercy I can probably do a lot more tomorrow.

    Update

    P.S. 55,900 on the spot.

    Edited by sunjumper at 23:51:38 11-12-2012
  • RobTheBuilder 12 Dec 2012 01:46:43 6,521 posts
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    Chapter 26 - Metal Gear Wobbly

    A mysterious man follows his target...

    http://nanowrimo-theentertainer.blogspot.co.uk/2012/12/26-metal-gear-wobbly.html

    You know when an idea for a chapter turns into something you hadn't even considered when you started writing it. That's this one.

    Up to 34.5k now!

    Edited by RobTheBuilder at 01:47:28 12-12-2012
  • RobTheBuilder 12 Dec 2012 01:48:02 6,521 posts
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    @TechnoHippy Oh and I agree, I love metal clubs :D
  • TechnoHippy 12 Dec 2012 18:02:32 14,718 posts
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    @MetalDog

    Thanks for the feedback - all added to my list :-)

    My books, contests, reviews and author interviews on my blog

  • TechnoHippy 12 Dec 2012 18:18:00 14,718 posts
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    @sunjumper

    Excellent an update :-)

    Chapter 12:

    "We could make a life album first" - should be 'live'

    "Did you have a hippie for breakfast, sister? " - Nice line :-)

    “In contrast to a life album?” - life again, or am I missing something?

    In fact it's life all over the place.

    "They are build different" - built?

    "D.C. trailed off noticing that Kim had moved her head far enough to fire warning shots with her eyes right through his soul." - It's a funny line, but a little clumsy. Made me smile though.

    Another good chapter.

    My books, contests, reviews and author interviews on my blog

  • sunjumper 12 Dec 2012 19:03:26 3,197 posts
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    That's what happens when you write past your bed time.
    Yes, it should be live and I vaguely remember 'correcting' it into the wrong version for reason now unknown to my waking mind.

    Stupid homophones...

    Thank you for the feedback.
    There is as always much stuff in it that I would probably never see on my own during editing.
  • MetalDog 12 Dec 2012 19:05:53 23,697 posts
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    @Sunjumper
    Lightbringer 10

    'alcoholic fortune teller' was a splendid image after the desc of the cocktail.

    I also particularly liked 'small, carefully measured smugness.'

    Being 'tired of question marks' made me smile, because I get that way in long question interchanges, but it breaks the fourth wall by drawing attention to the type, so it really doesn't fit, imo.

    I think you're heading for name confusion with a Kim and a Sam - as with Techno, I recommend you lengthen one of those names.

    At the door with Sam, there's a paragraph where I think you're missing the word 'eye'
    The looked away losing itself in thought for a moment.


    I'm surprised the authorities haven't noticed the drummer controlling the towns movements =)

    -- boobs do nothing for me, I want moustaches and chest hair.

  • sunjumper 13 Dec 2012 02:44:20 3,197 posts
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    The authorities would not notice, they become part of the rhythm. (They would all turn into... wait for it... beat cops! Buwahahahahaha... *snif*)


    Only got 500 words written tonight. I started to late and I need to go to sleep.
    But the words were good. They give me the foundation for the next part and sleeping on it will help. I am still a bit disappointed with myself that I got so little done today. But there is always tomorrow.
  • TechnoHippy 13 Dec 2012 11:13:31 14,718 posts
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    @RobTheBuilder

    Chapter 26:

    Nice intro, I like someone sticking out when they're trying to be stealthy.

    An amusing chapter over all. Worked well visually as well.

    My books, contests, reviews and author interviews on my blog

  • sunjumper 14 Dec 2012 01:07:41 3,197 posts
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    Again. Horribly tired.
    The new chapter is expanding very slowly. I think I need to listen to my own advice and when things slow down just jump forward to the point where interesting things happen again.

    Only a few hundred words done today. Tomorrow will probably be worse as it may be my birthday and I might be busy celebrating with my friends.

    But the important thing is that again I am sitting in front of my trusty computer, typing away. It might not be overwhelming quantity but it is moving me through a wall. Bit by bit.

    A few more words and then it's sleepy time.


    MD when is your next update going to see the light of day?

    Blerk? Words? On blog? Please??
  • Blerk Moderator 14 Dec 2012 09:55:44 48,225 posts
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    I thought you said 'on bog' then for a minute. :D

    I've been trying to finish off the next chapter before posting. I think it's there now, so hopefully I can throw it up there tonight.
  • MetalDog 14 Dec 2012 09:56:13 23,697 posts
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    I managed about 200 words last night, some of which may even survive =D
    Today is my last day at work before the break, so I should improve output shortly afterwards - 'horribly tired' sums me up pretty well too.

    Slow progress is still progress though, good to see you, Blerk and Rob still slogging away, we will all get there eventually!

    -- boobs do nothing for me, I want moustaches and chest hair.

  • sunjumper 14 Dec 2012 10:01:10 3,197 posts
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    Seeing that I beat the great MetalDog threefold yesterday makes me feel a bit better. Also smug.

    @Blerk
    As I read that last line of my post up there through sleep webbed eyes O read 'on bog' too.
  • Carbon_Altered 14 Dec 2012 22:00:33 675 posts
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    Ok guys, I'm done, at least for now. After 68,109 words I give you

    The final chapter

    I came to a good place to leave it for the holiday season. Please forgive me another inconclusive ending!
  • TechnoHippy 15 Dec 2012 09:45:42 14,718 posts
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    @Carbon_Altered

    The final chapter already!

    A fun ride overall. I'm looking forward to the next book.

    My books, contests, reviews and author interviews on my blog

  • Salaman 15 Dec 2012 10:34:54 19,131 posts
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    Good job on finishing! The ending itsn't too jarring.
    Classic cliff hanger. They resolved the immediate threat/situation and there's clearly another adventure for them to embark on that's outside the scope of this particular story being told.

    Enjoyed reading that and I think you managed to get a laugh out of me in each chapter, often more than one. That's impressive. The humour makes it a pleasant read.
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