Sunday, November 10, 2013

Quill Down

Eve is a violent game. The stories told of it retain that violence. Blood drenched words carry the history and the future. In writing about Eve the violence is echoed. The world revels in destruction. In ending. In beginning. In continuation.

I'm resting my creative brain for it is sore and somewhat rung out. There is always amusement when I go to look for creative thought and find myself blank. Such has been the situation over the last few days as I resurface from writing my entries for the Pod and Planet contest.


Today, is the last day for entries. So far, the submissions seem fewer than last year. That will be a bit disappointing if participation is down. I do believe that the general, overall quality is higher. Many of last years writers are returning and people are taking the event with a more serious, but still enthusiastic, turn.

I wrote four things this year. Last year I did six. One review was less quantity more time spend on what I had.  I took that to heart. Three were planned and one was spontaneous.

ECM Nightmare was an idle story formed on Jabber and brought forward to my own amusing.

Boots on the Ground; Fire in the Sky is my serious entry and the one I spent the most time on. I wrote a split between Eve and Dust 514 with a focus on Planetary Conquest come to Molden Heath. I'm rather in love with Dust's concepts and potential for creative writing. It is almost odd because I am not in love with the game as I am in love with Eve. Dust may just fit my writing style a bit more. This would be the second Dust 514 focused story I've created.

Economics is my return to Bizz and also an attempt to push myself in a different writing direction. Bizz's stories are not about blood and physical violence but instead about manipulation and market intelligence. I don't know if I do him or these types of stories justice. They intrigue me however and I keep exploring the style.

Blood Money appeared in my brain and came out well. It is not long or complex but I hope it is interesting. It was very much inspired by the words of the contest itself as it discusses stories about the people of the universe. Who are these people? Beyond the bright spark of the capsuleer who else is there? There are so many windows on a station...

Last year, one of my reviews was that my stories needed more editing. I've discussed my particular flavor of learning disability and the inability it causes to edit my own work. It is frustrating, but my boys supported me yet again, with proof reading. Wex came to the front lines as my editor and poured over my stories, dragging all the typos, grammar, and spelling mistakes he could comb out of them to the light using his "I've been a real editor superpowers". I feel more confident for the work. I also feel guilty for the mild slavery. We sat on coms and edited page after page. People would pop down to see what we were doing. It is almost embarrassing. I'm not good at promoting my work and find even telling people how I enslaved Wex to edit for me embarrassing for its me, me, me oriented focus.

Being edited is very hard. I'm sensitive to my problem areas. Often, when criticized for things I cannot see I get down. Should I just burn my computer and trash my keyboard? Woe is me, etc, etc etc. I could do endless explanations to absolute strangers but where would it get me? I know I have a blind spot. Yet, I'm stubborn and keep writing. The side effect is that my writing has improved and continues to improve. I'll never be perfect. I'll never be able to edit my work on a technical level. But the time and effort Wex put into my work I hope to repay him by learning from it and improving what I do.

And what I did was write. This year, I found that I was heavily influenced by the last six months of the game. The Motherland Molden Heath, Planetary Conquest, Tags 4 Sec, PvP, and the market are the focus of my writing. I want to say something like, "I explored new concepts" or "I pushed myself into unexplored areas" or "I discovered a lot about myself." But in reality I sit back, close my eyes, and let my mind wander and the ideas bubble to the surface. Once there, I skim them, examine them for a hopefully attached plotline and start writing.

There is also the fact that I hate competitions and do not consider myself a competitive person. But this contest, it hits my weakness. To write and be read. Oh, what a lure that is! How it shatters my defenses and causes me to throw myself onto a pyre of my own discomforts. I cannot blame anyone but myself for my weakness. How I do enjoy the writing and savor the pressure caused by the time limits. I'm not a procrastinator and thrive under schedules.

Now I'm done. Rest, recovery, and the results will be announced sometime. It took two months last time. My stories have been released to the winds of the internet. I cannot call them back. Now it is done and I will walk away and wait for the eventual announcement of the results.

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