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30 March 2015 @ 10:25 pm
In my corner, Camp NaNoWriMo begins in about 24 hours. Am I ready? I hope so.

During the last few days, I did some research, created a cover and even worked two hours on a map that I later realized was unnecessary. I also got some plotting done and feel like I know enough to write the first draft now. Here’s the gist of it:

A young man haunted by the desire to find the holy city that disappeared a long time ago and return to it the name he is carrying.

A girl who only ages one year for every four.

A gifted musician who never loses sight of north.

In a land of forgotten stories, all of them are bound by the inquisition that sentences entire cities to death by planting rapid growth forests in them. When man pollutes the environment, after all, nature should be able to defend itself.

Despite all that, I’m unusually nervous about this novel. I think it’s because I chose to share Seeds with people, not in the traditional way by contacting publishers, but online and for free. Lately I’ve been thinking about sharing more of my writing with the community and debating how to do that. With Seeds, I know it probably won’t hit the shelves, so I should be content with posting it online. But I’m nervous.

While this isn’t the first time I’m posting my work online, it has always been finished short stories before. I’ve never tried to post a long project in chapters and I’ve never bothered with promoting my work to others. There were a few comments and that was it. For a while, I’ve tried to reach out to fellow writers, connect and network a little though and it’s been more fun than expected. I feel like maybe this is something I can do.

More importantly, this could teach me valuable things about the writing business. I’m still not sure, but I’ll definitely check it out for a while. If you’re interested in reading Seeds in German, by all means contact me! I’d love opinions on my little business idea and on the story itself, of course!
Current Music: 分島花音 - 読書家姫君 | Powered by Last.fm
23 March 2015 @ 05:06 pm
In terms of writing, little has changed. I’m still working on Seeds. Granted, I got sidetracked a few times and started writing other stories, namely a sappy romance between a high school girl and a rock musician set in Japan which sits at 9k now. I’m even thinking of continuing it mostly because it has been surprisingly fun so far.

As for Seeds, I decided to participate in Camp NaNoWriMo a few days ago, so I’ll be focusing on that next month. Recently I’ve had doubts about the cell phone novel style I’ve been writing it in. When I tried writing the opening in my usual style, it felt as if something was missing though. Originally the story was meant to be extremely poetic and even surreal like a fairytale. I don’t know if I want to abandon that style for more conventional and coherent storytelling. For now I’ll try and experiment with different ideas to find the right voice for it.

That’s not what I wanted to talk about though. Three days ago, I attended two book signings at a local bookstore. The first, a Q&A with Patrick Rothfuss, was fun as hell, and the second, a reading by Jenny-Mai Nuyen, really fascinating too. In fact it was my very first time at a book signing. The atmosphere got me all excited and tingly.

It also made me realize two things: First, it reminded me of my love for the storytelling and writing trade. Talking to successful writers has motivated me to work hard and improve my own writing so I can stand on that pedestal one day. I want to read from my books and chat about my characters just like they did. So that has been a truly refreshing experience.

Second, as those events were parts of a fantasy book festival, it got me thinking about how popular fantasy is as a genre. For years I’ve been labeling my stories as magical realism, surreal fiction or science fiction, although many could’ve classified as urban fantasy too. I didn’t want to be associated with the heaps of bad fantasy and YA fiction that is flooding stores nowadays. However, the truth is that good fantasy exists. The two books I had signed are good fantasy. I think it’s time to admit my ties to that genre proudly instead of hiding behind fancy literary terms.

And isn’t it the fantasy author who makes the most money with his books and their adaptations? Not to be cheap or anything. ;)
Current Music: YUI - Jam | Powered by Last.fm
24 February 2015 @ 11:01 am
For the longest time I’ve been struggling with doubts about how I want to write and what kind of story I really want to tell. This is a crucial question for every writer. I haven’t found an answer yet which is why this blog hasn’t been updated.

In the meantime, I wrote several short pieces and a thesis, started a novel or two, flew off to Scotland and came back. I already miss it, but the trip allowed me to get my thoughts in order. It has changed me in small ways, but I already feel more inspired and motivated than I’ve been for a long time. As of yesterday, I’m working on a new idea which is titled Seeds.

I have no idea what it’ll grow into yet as only the basic concept has revealed itself to me, but the form will be a bit of an experiment. It’ll be like prose poetry in a way, but also resemble the style of the Japanese cell phone novel, a literary style I’ve been researching lately. Its key points are extremely short chapters designed to be read on a small screen, heavy use of line and paragraph breaks and simple minimalistic writing style. I’ve wanted to play around with this style for some time and this opportunity practically jumped into my face with Seeds.

Depending on how the story turns out, I might or might not publish it on Wattpad. I’ve been thinking about getting my writing out there for a while, connect with readers and writers through social networks which might open doors for future endeavors and inspire me further.

So those are plans and ideas for now. I’m also striving to keep this blog updated on my progress, so please keep an eye out for it.
Current Music: Кирилл Комаров – У входа в рай
01 November 2014 @ 01:50 pm
For a long time, I didn't feel like writing. In fact it was such a long time that I grew grumpy and frustrated without even knowing why. But writing was the key. It always is. Now it's NaNoWriMo and I already feel so much calmer and more balanced.

This year I'm writing something different from my usual stories. It could be called dystopic science fiction, but it's about social conflict and independence above all. That's why the novel is called Eleutheria which means 'freedom' in Ancient Greek. Here's the synopsis.

In 2212, mankind has retreated into a handful of highly fortified and isolated cities across the globe to protect itself from natural disasters. Indra and Ryan, a pair of idealistic students, dream of freedom in the Californian wilderness and escape San Francisco to find it. Throughout their journey, they join the rucksack revolutionaries and stumble right into a conflict between mankind and leukrosiae, winged humanoids born in science labs a century ago. Indra is fascinated, but any fight for independence is perilous and littered with unpleasant surprises.

The concept has been brewing for around two years, but I only started plotting three days ago. I think I have a good idea of the beginning, but I hope that momentum is enough to keep me going through the middle. Most likely I'll have to stop and plot more, but that's a good thing.

This year also marks the first time I went to a kick-off party in my region. There was lots of food and caffeine, the people were funny and the puns, of course, exquisite. I met a girl who writes literary fiction like I usually do and that's rare. All in all, I greatly enjoyed it. I also wrote 3,066 words in three and a half hours which was a nice side effect.

To November and good luck to everyone else who is participating! I promise you won't regret it.
Current Music: yasmine hamdan - hal
22 August 2014 @ 08:45 pm
Shortly after the last blog, I decided not to force words that didn't have my heart in it. That meant abandoning Shukumono for the moment.

However, I wanted to write something, so I returned to the third draft of Crow City. There were only two scenes left to write before it was done at 46,689 words. The plan is to let it sit for a while before revising once again. I think the message shines through more clearly than in past drafts though. That process of writing and editing draft after draft feels like working with stone or gems. By cutting away excess material, the writer gradually reveals the gist of the story. This feels like the right way to polish a novel until it is what it was meant to be.

After finishing Crow City on the 17th, I wasn't sure what to work on next. Getting a job and catching up with old friends is eating time. After work I'm usually too exhausted to even think about writing. At this rate, I'm not going to make my monthly goal, so I'll probably tune it down to 15,000 words with less than 6,000 left to write. That should be doable.

Either way, I'm making experiences and mostly enjoying work which is a good thing. I'm sure I'll get lots of ideas as soon as I've more time in September!
Current Music: namie amuro - make it happen feat. afterschool