matt_doyle: (Default)
Between LJ malfunctioning and my family visiting (which was gratifying and tiring), I have been kept busy.

Finally got into the head of my narrator for my Yuletide story and wrote an exceptionally gratifying first line.

Sent in my Cthulhu for Christmas story, which was definitely and finally titled Gift of the Magus, and received my paycheck for it, which was immensely satisfying. You guys, people are paying me to write things! And I have been published! Now if only I can unite the two and get people to pay me for publication...

Finished!

Nov. 28th, 2011 02:50 pm
matt_doyle: (Default)
Rough draft of Spirit of the Season / Gift of the Magus is done. If you have already volunteered to beta, it is on its way to you. If you have not volunteered but would like to beta-read, this is your last chance, ;-) !

572 words.

Nov. 21st, 2011 12:36 pm
matt_doyle: (Default)
Half of which are on Spirit of the Season // Gift of the Magus.

Last night I dreamed I was engaged in tactical wargames training on behalf of the Irish Mob.

My instructor was my AP English teacher from high school.

Most of the training took place in an arcade.

I really hoping I'm forgetting some details that made all that make more sense.
matt_doyle: (Default)
Coffee with eggnog: still delicious!

I have already written 562 words today. For those of you keeping track, that's 134,254 words so far this year.

More importantly, I have finally cracked the problem of the Cthulhu Christmas story. It's only about 20% finished, but I know exactly how it progresses, what its twists and turns are, and how it ends. I don't need to keep working on all four drafts, I have one that will work, solidly, splendidly, and pretty terrifyingly.

I have watched The Phantom of the Opera three times in the last sixteen hours, and let me tell you it is a marvelous tool for inspiring a proper sense of drama, if that's the sort of mood you need in order to write.

I also created a second Twitter account so I could try some different storylines in Echo Bazaar, and I have already exhausted all my turns for the day in both accounts.

Maybe I should ask for some Fate for Christmas?

How are all of you today? My weekend is looking up.
matt_doyle: (Default)
Stalled at 300-something words for the day right now.

Actually writing That Thing I Am Being Paid To Write, version 3.

Time to see if more coffee will break the creative stalemate.

I'm back!

Oct. 23rd, 2011 09:10 pm
matt_doyle: (Default)
I got 2447 words of fiction written, mostly on the next couple chapters of The Hellion Prince, but also including three (mutually exclusive) openings to my Cthulhu Christmas story.  I also read a lot, though I didn't nearly make it through all 17 books.  In fact, I almost exclusively read graphic novels, but some of them were big enough to take up novel-length stretches of time.

I read:

Amulet, Volume 3: The Cloud Searchers
by Kazu Kibuishi
Amulet, Volume 4: The Last Council by Kazu Kibuishi

This series continues to be fantastic and far more nuanced than a first glance at it appears.

Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic: Volume 2, Flashpoint  This was a re-read, because I can never keep track of which volumes of this I have read and which i have not, but it was still enjoyable.

Superman: The Wrath of Gog  Like most Superman stories, this was one was crap.  In my not-so-humble opinion, Superman stories are only worth telling when the author puts an ethical dilemma center-stage:  the kind of problem that power cannot solve.  Otherwise, Superman has a tendency to turn into a blustering slugfest finished either with a Dramatic Punch or a deus ex machina.

Kill Shakespeare: Vol. 1 by McCreery, Del Col, and Belanger.  I've heard a lot of good things about this series, and it's intriguing to me, with its metafictional concept; but the writers are frankly sloppy at crafting good Elizabethan dialogue, especially when it comes to grammar, and in other ways the execution is imaginative but so far fairly directionless.  Still, I'd read the next volume in the hope that it improves.  They better stop mixing up thee, thou, and thy; however.  That shit is unforgivable.

Justice League of America:  When Worlds Collide.  Written by Dwayne McDuffie.  Meh.  Not great, not terrible.  not one of McDuffie's better efforts.

Castle Waiting, Volumes 1 & 2, by Linda Medley.  Frankly fantastic.  An entertaining but original remix of folklore with a spectacular and diverse cast of characters (and boy are they characters) and an intriguing, if slow-building, plot.  The plot moves well through Volume I and nearly stalls entirely in Volume II, but watching the characters interact with one another was well worth my time.  Still, when I get my hands on Volume III, a little more better happen.

The Well of Ascension by Brandon Sanderson.  Actually the second book in the Mistborn trilogy, and I have not read the first, but it does a good job of standing alone.  I was relatively impressed by the worldbuilding, very impressed by the magic system and the plot twists.  Some of the characters were one-dimensional but others were incredibly nuanced, and the prose was uneven but better than average on the whole.  I'm definitely going to track down the first book in the trilogy, and almost certainly the third as well.  'Original' is not something I say often about epic fantasy series; but I'll say it about this one.

Alex Rider:  Scorpia Rising by Anthony Horowitz.  This series is more or less equivalent to James Bond, but centered around a modern teenager; and this is apparently the final title in the series.  The series as a whole is a great adaptation of the unique Bond blend of action-excitement, techno-gadget porn, cheesy names and plots, and genuine drama; and the last book fully lives up to the promise of the series.  At times, certain scenes were so evocative that my brain actually conjured the James Bond soundtrack to play in my head.  I can only hope that Horowitz will get Conan-Doyled into continuing these books.


Seven titles to go, and I expect I'll get to them later this week.  With luck, I may even review them...

matt_doyle: (boom de yadah)
Part of this is because I'm in between the spans of a pharmaceutical study, and can therefore gleefully resume my caffeine consumption.  Part of it, however, is that I've just received my second paid commission for fiction.  [personal profile] necromommycon needs a short story to go out with her Christmas letter this year, so between now and December I have to write 2000 words of Christmas-themed Lovecraftian fantasy.   My intention is to hammer myself out a rough draft before November comes around, and then spend a comfortable month revising, so if anyone has any particularly entertaining notions for how to combine Cthulhu and Christmas, I'm open to suggestions.

She is, in this case, buying exclusive rights for a one-year timespan, after which the story will revert to me.   This means, yet again, that the story will not be posted on my blog, but I will discuss plot and process as I go along; so anyone who wants to be added to that filter will see snippets, and anyone volunteering to beta-read for me will get to see the whole thing.


In other news, I owe another Scum and Villainy update and another Broken Road update, if anyone is interested in seeing those.  They rarely get comments, so I'm not sure how much good posting the summaries is doing anyone, though certainly it helps me to remember what the Hell is going on so I don't muddle my own campaign canon.

I have written exactly six words of fiction so far today -- four words in one chapter of The Hellion Prince, and two words in a different chapter.  Heh.

Not much to report from the rest of my life, except that I just returned ten library books which I read over the past week, and have now checked out another eighteen.

Haven't been blogging my reading as much as I intended to, but binges like this are part of the reason why; :-).

I have every non-winning piece for McDonald's Monopoly, as well as three free Medium Fries.


And now, to fiction.

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