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Music Monday #33 – Angry Birds

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Published on: August 15, 2011

I’ve been at my parent’s house playing a lot of Angry Birds this weekend, so I’ll just leave this here.

Photo Phriday #32 – Storm

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Published on: August 12, 2011

You probably want to click this one to see it bigger, because it is a cool storm picture, and you will like it. I love storms. See you Monday.

Playing God

Categories: Whatever Wednesday
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Published on: August 10, 2011

So you know what part of writing I like the most? World building. I love creating an internally consistent, interesting setting for my story to take place in. I like it a heck of a lot more than writing the actual characters or plot or dialogue, in actual point of fact. So, you can be assured that once I knew I would be writing Caravan, a world that was somewhat less fleshed out than some of the other ones, I was super excited to get down and write an awesome setting bible.

And it is awesome. And way more complex than will almost certainly ever be necessary for the actual story. I’ve figured out the economics of hydrogen production and sales in a water-scarce world. I’ve figured out the details of the catastrophe that left the world in exactly the state of ruin it’s currently in. I’ve figured out how little of that is actually known to the general populace at the time the story takes place. It’s all fleshed out, and it’s all consistent with setting and theme. And all of this took quite a bit of time.

And then, when I finished and realized I wouldn’t actually need to know any of this, I felt something that I’d never felt about world building before. I felt like I’d wasted my time. I’m now writing four blog posts a week, and I felt like taking all that time for stuff I didn’t really need was unnecessary and could have been better spent.

I was wrong.

I sat down Monday to write Caravan #2, and it just flowed out of me. That’s what a good setting does, I think. The world I had written felt vibrant and alive, and writing a story within it is so much easier, at least for me, when I know that world’s boundaries and possibilities. So, yes, the next time I’m writing a story, I’m going to write a big, dense, detailed setting bible, even if it doesn’t technically need it.

Caravan #2

Categories: Choose Your Tuesday
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Published on: August 9, 2011

Walther kept the gas petal all the way to the floor. Two tons of hydrogen burning engine roared as he drove the big rig toward the rest of the caravan. The other drivers were armed, but they didn’t have anything like the old minigun, and the raiders would take them apart. He had to get between the rest of the rigs and the raiders.

Some of the raiders noticed him coming and broke off the attack to engage him. Freddie popped them with the Vulcan with no trouble. “That got their attention!” Freddie whooped. The rest of the raider vehicles moved in to engage. (Though some slunk away in the back. Cowards.) Their rig took a lot of fire. It was going to be a real pain to fix all these bullet holes. Still, none of the enemy had the weapons or armor to face their old aircraft cannon. The gun chattered away, wrecking car after car. Then it fell silent. Walther was about to cheer when he noticed there were still a couple out there. Freddie would never let off when there were still targets. Something was wrong.

Music Monday #32 – More Than A Feeling

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Published on: August 8, 2011

Minions, let me introduce you to Igor Presnyakov. In addition to having one of the coolest names ever, he’s also one of the most ridiculously talented guitar players ever. And we haven’t even gotten started on these arrangements. While most people are content to play the guitar part of a song when covering it on the guitar, Igor prefers to cover the entire instrumentation of a song on his one guitar. (He also sings occasionally, but rarely the whole song.) Igor’s YouTube account has (at the time of this post) 177 covers of songs across a huge range of genres from rock ballads like the one above to metal covers to classical tunes. Minions, I don’t often give you orders, but seriously, listen to the song above, and then head over to Igor’s YouTube account here and just dig in. You’ll thank me.

Photo Phriday #31 – Fat Jokes

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Published on: August 5, 2011

I cannot resist a pun, you guys.

Revisions

Categories: Whatever Wednesday
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Published on: August 3, 2011

So, last week I had this whole post fermenting in my head about artist’s frustration and how it’s really hard to produce all the time and blah blah blaaaah, and none of it was particularly interesting when I actually started to write it down, and I just drew an awesome picture, and most of the post came from just having a bad art day and no you’re a run on sentence!

Anyway, let me do some quick hits of the important points:

I had a substitute teacher for one day in 7th or 8th grade. I don’t remember what her name was, or what she looked like, but I was drawing a cool robot, and she said, “There are other things that are beautiful besides destruction.” This wrecked me as a young artist, and I don’t know why. I lost my enjoyment of drawing, and it honestly took me until a couple years ago to get over it.

I try not to regret things. I like my life, and things have worked out really great for me, but I must admit that I regret letting that lady get to me. I wonder what kind of art I could make today if I had kept drawing like I used to.

So yeah, in my original post those two paragraphs probably would have been like four hundred words, and much whinier.

But I’m not doing that. I have better things to do. For instance: Sorry this is a bit late. Also, have you noticed my new penchant for one word titles? That’s a weird phase to go through, hey?

See you Friday, Minions. Don’t forget to vote on the post before this.

And The Winner Is…

Categories: Choose Your Tuesday
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Published on: August 2, 2011

So, I know that there are two stories that are tied for first in the Tuesday poll, and that I said I’d do a run-off in that case, but I’m not going to. You see, after a couple Google searches I’ve found that my entire story concept for Red has been done, with that exact title, setting, premise, and all the same characters approximately eleven hundred billion times. So, yeah, I’m not going to do that.

Instead, I’m officially declaring the winner to be Caravan!

You can go read the entry here, and then vote below to choose what happens next. In the future polls will go up with the story, and voting will be open until I get around to closing it on Saturday.

Music Monday #31 – Sunday Morning

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Published on: August 1, 2011

We did it, Minions. A cover for each day of the week, once a week, for seven weeks. Weeky. In any case, this is a band called 3rd Earth covering No Doubt’s Sunday Morning. The sound quality is… not great, but I love finding these little groups covering the songs. It’s fun.

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