So, About Bodies . . .

How’s by all of you? We’re having a blizzard here. The power went out for two hours, but I was already in bed typing, so I just put Mona and Milton under the blankets with me–Veronica has issues and so does not burrow–and we stayed fairly cosy. It was wonderful when the lights came back on, though, along with the heat. I love electricity. And now back to work.

Which is figuring out Nick’s body issues. Continue reading

Drafting: Discovery to Truck

The process of moving from a discovery draft (which is just writing to see what the story’s about) to a truck draft (which is an early draft that isn’t great but is probably good enough to publish if I get hit by a truck) is mostly about deconstructing a scene by beats to see what the hell is in there, and revising that to what’s supposed to be in there, once I’ve gotten a good overview of the act or entire book. I’ve done about a zillion drafts of the first breakfast scene, but they were all discovery drafts. It’s time to get serious about this sucker. For one thing, this scene over 3900 words and for another, it goes nowhere. it’s an overwritten, wandering, bloviating mess.

Here’s the rewrite analysis:

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Act One: Getting Closer

So this week, I cogitated.

My first act was too long and too wordy. My fourth PoV was introduced too late. The threads of the main plot and the subplots weren’t coherent. The book didn’t know what it wanted to be. So I opened my Nita Curio file and did some mapping.

Story mapping for me (not necessarily for anybody else) is taking the essence of a scene–Protagonist and Goal, Antagonist and Goal, who wins, what plot does it move?–and reducing it down to a Curio card, and then arranging the cards in chronological order in columns that identify the setting. My curio cards look like this: Continue reading

Legends of Tomorrow Binge Watch: Episodes 2-9 & 2-10 : “Legends of the Lost Art’ and “The Legion of Doom” and What the Hell Storytelling

legends-binge-logo-snartless Since this appears to be Go For Broke week here on Argh Craft, it’s a good time to go back to Legends of Tomorrow because in its new insane season, the writers have been consistently saying, “What the hell, let’s do THIS” and just hitting the show out of the SF/comic book show park. This show was once consistently rated the worst of the Arrowverse–Arrow, The Flash, Legends, and this year Supergirl–and now it’s more often than not rated the best. That is entirely due to the writers room stocking a lot of good weed or just deciding that if it feels good, they should write it. I don’t think I’ve ever had so much fun with Dumb TV. If they bring back Snart, this will be my favorite show. Oh, hell, it’s my favorite show now, but bring back Snart anyway.

Where was I? Right. The pleasures of watching a show (or reading a story) where the writer says, “What the hell, why not?” They are many. Continue reading

It’s All in the Reflexes

I’ve been reading The Official Making of Big Trouble in Little China and finding it tremendously comforting. I bought the book because it’s about my favorite movie of all time, but I’m finding it comforting because it’s reminding me to swing as wide as I can while telling the best story I can, and then let go and let the Girls in the Basement take it from there.

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In Praise of Lawyers

If you know a lawyer who rushed to an airport near you to help those Steve Bannon decided did not belong in a country they had a legal right to enter, give him or her a big kiss from me. This is insanely wrong.

And please, give to the ACLU, please. They were always important but now they’re crucial.

Now would also be a good time to contact your reps in Congress and suggest that you’d like a government that’s not unAmerican. Find your House rep here. Find your senator here. E-mails are evidently being ignored, so it’s back to snail mail. Bury them in it.

I had a much longer post here, but it was angry and not helpful. Action is helpful. Participation is essential. And supporting the organizations that defend our constitution and everything it means to be America is crucial. If our government won’t defend the ideals that make us who we are, we must.

Edited to Add Monday, Janurary 30, from 538.com:

While public officials were sorting out their reactions to the executive order, the ACLU sent attorneys to people who were being detained in U.S. airports as a result. The ACLU said it raised more than $24 million in online donations over the weekend, compared with its annual average of about $3 million to $4 million. [Dustin Volz, ACLU]

Expectation and Reversal: A Video Explanation

We’ve talked about setting up expectations and then reversing them in a way that makes the reader/viewer see things in a different way so they feel engaged and delighted instead of swindled (the infamous Gotcha). I love this video because it’s a great short visual for that concept:

My fave is the lightbulb that lights up instead of breaking; not just a reversal but a delightful surprise.

Originally on Vimeo.