Currently I am very tired. Tired to the point of my eyes being somewhat bloodshot. There are two reasons for this. Firstly because my day yesterday started at five thirty and ended at midnight, and secondly because once I did go to bed my brain and body refused to sleep. Mostly this was because I had had a really good night recording some podcasts with the guys from Sanspants Radio.
While they host a number of programs the one I participated in is called Movie Maintenance and involves taking a movie, tv series, book, whatever, and basically laying out where you think it did well and where it could be improved. Sometimes even pitching an entirely alternative plotline of your own making to either add or replace the canon of whatever it is you’re doing maintenance on. It’s a lot of fun. I was called in last night to do one on the Wheel of Time series, a sprawling fantasy epic written by Robert Jordan that goes for fourteen books. I’ve been reading and rereading this series since I was in high school and so felt well equipped to sit around and chat about it for a couple of hours. In fact that describes a near perfect evening, which it was. One the adolescent version of me would have been very jealous of. For this one we were looking less at how to improve the series – which doesn’t really need me messing with it too much anyway – and more at how you would adapt it to screen. Mostly though we just talked about what makes it the great series it is. It won’t come out for probably a month or more, as the guys already have a fair back catalogue of pre recorded episodes to upload first, but when it does I’ll relink it here.
My only complaint about the night was that I enjoyed it too much. My brain kept itself awake bubbling with ideas for what other content I could rework. I think what I like most about the practice, other than it’s just fun to sit around and talk about the things I love with like minded people, is that it’s a really good way for me to improve my own story writing. Not only does it cause me to critically analyse other successful stories but it also forces me to fairly quickly try and come up with an alternative plot line that will still hit all the major story structure markers. This kind of quick story generation is great, and allows me to train my brain to take that original spark of an idea and then pass it over to the analytical side of my brain that can tease it out and find the beats of the story within it. A process I currently find challenging, but that will only be improved by practice.
All in all I give it an A+
In other writing news, I had a post recently talking about how I wanted to get simultaneous projects on the go in order to jump from one to the other whenever I found myself flagging, thereby getting the maximum effort from myself on a given day. I didn’t really manage it last week but so far this week it seems to be working well. As of right now I have three writing tabs open (including this blog) and am finding that moving from one to another is keeping my fingers flying. I’m replacing the usual distractions of email or facebook with writing something else, basically tricking myself into writing more. Sneaky.
My major project is still my most recent short story which is coming along really well now and which hopefully I’ll have the first draft of done by the end of the week. I’m pretty excited about this one because I know I’m not going to try and shop it around, instead I’ll record an audio version which I’ll release in mini chapters on this site. This is something I’ve been wanting to do for ages now so it’ll be nice to actually make it happen.
And that’s probably enough of me writing about myself for one day. In order to cleanse the pallet here’s a video from futurism about a company that has designed a floor to harvest the kinetic energy from our footsteps. Which means a dance floor would become some kind of super generator! It truly is an amazing age when you can harness the power of boogie.