Monthly Archives: October 2012

On NaNoWriMo

No, NaNoWriMo. National Novel Writing Month. As in, the month-long novel-writing race that starts tomorrow. See my ‘about’ page.
The point of this post is that the NaNoWriMo site isn’t working. In other words, I start my month-long noveling excursion in 5½ hours.
Join me! Join me and 300,000 others in our quest to write 50,000 words in one month.
It’ll be fun. It’s thirty days and nights of literary abandon (says the website). And for a literary perefticonist like me, a little exuberant imperfection (read the excellent Chris Baty’s book No Plot? No Problem!) is always a good thing.
Inner editor: locked up. Writing playlist: downloaded. Plot outline: almost finished. NaNoWriMo, I’m ready.


On tropes and fruit Mentos

Before you read this post, read this. (Disclaimer: if you are compelled to spend far too much of your life than is healthy there, it’s not my fault.)
In my humble opinion, tropes are there to subvert. Boy-rescues-emotionally-scarred-girl-and-they-end-up-happily-ever-after (I’m sure there’s a page for that) is pretty popular at the moment. And if something is popular, I tend to ignore it. What if the girl rescued the boy? What if the boy was the scarred one? (Though scarred-girl-rescues-boy sounds quite fun to write.) What if they had to work for their happily ever after? As everything I write ends up being a) fantasy, b) romance, c) comedy, or d) all three, I had to include dragons in there somewhere. After much thought and packets of fruit Mentos, I ended up with Rella, a feisty dragon-tamer looking after her little brother single-handedly, and Lyle, an abused prince kept locked away from the rest of the people. I thought of Albia, a society where people are judged on their hair and eye colour; Hawke, Lyle’s manipulative tutor; Paisleigh, the ditzy, loveable princess; Aladdin, the innocent kid forced to grow up too soon; and a plot for NaNoWriMo. The Literary Perefticonist is happy. And when she is happy, she eats fruit Mentos. She shall go do that now. Until next time.

On her somewhat coherent plot

NaNoWriMo’s tomorrow (gasp) and I have a reasonably coherent plot. It subverts countless tropes and has the all-round best cast in my (admittedly rather short) history of casts. I’m still trying to find a way to fit dragons in (long story), but otherwise… NaNoWriMo, show yourself.
I shall have more information of interest later. Promise. But for now, dear reader, that’s the best I can give you. Adiós. (See. I listen in Spanish.)

On the evils of touchscreen devices

I am a clever person. I just deleted all of the data on my phone. That is, 132 songs, 16 videos, 54 photos, several ebooks, and lots of writerly PDFs. Results? A very colorful chain of words, a cracked phone case, and a phone which is busy downloading a lot of music.
People. Back up your data. That is all.
Over and out.

On her lack of all things plottish

In other words, NaNoWriMo begins on Thursday, and I haven’t got a plot. I have the best cast ever, but nothing remotedly resembling an outline.
So, with nothing plottish to show you, I’d like you to meet the people I’ll be spending November with. They’re waiting for you. Step through this portal, and you’ll be on your way to the kingdom of Albia.

“Who are you?” A girl with cropped hair, thin in the extreme, yanks you from the bush you’d found yourself in. Fierce grey eyes glower at you as you try to wriggle out of her iron grip.
“Calm down, Rella.” A flash of red hair appears behind the girl. You make out a boy with a kind-looking face and green eyes before Rella steps between you.
She glares at the boy. “You’d let her go? A stranger? She’s probably a Truthful, just dying to run off and report us for some crime we didn’t commit.” She gives your arm a rough shake, and you try not to wince.
“A crime we didn’t commit!” she yells, right in your face, before shoving you into the bush again. Then she turns to the boy.
“I know you want to see the best of everyone, Lyle,” she says softly. “But sometimes, it’s just not possible.”
Lyle seems to struggle for words. “I’m not like that. I’m not as naïve as you think.”
“Oh, really?”
“You saw what Hawke did to me.”
Rella hangs her head. “Sorry.”
A slight blonde girl you hadn’t noticed before steps up to them. “Maybe you should find that person. Apologize to them, Rella.”
Rella stares at her. “Paisleigh, I swear if vultures came to attack us, you’d play dead.”
Paisleigh frowns.
“Oh, dear.” Rella touches Lyle’s shoulder. “I’m going.”
Two shadows melt into the distance, followed by a rapidly bobbing, shorter shape. Attempting to follow them, your foot catches on a branch. You tumble through the portal, away from Rella, Lyle and Paisleigh, away from Albia, back to the comfort of a world where people don’t get executed for meeting after dusk, where there aren’t different rules for people with different hair and eye colours.

Rella’s a decent person. She’s just… got a lot on her plate. And Paisleigh makes politicians look clever.
But this is Lyle’s story. Maybe later it’ll be Lyle and Rella’s story – that’s a story for another post.

On the awkwardness of first posts

First posts, like first dates, are awkward. Not that I’ve ever been on a date, but still.
So, what do people do on first dates?
1) They introduce themselves.
I’m Olivia. A student, trainee authoress, and all-round eccentric daydreaming misfit.
2) They make themselves sound interesting.
Um… I take Spanish after school. I write novels in November. I bake cupcakes that haven’t given anyone food poisoning… yet.
3) They have deep conversations about what they want in life.
(Note: the person who told me this is known for their sarcasm. But I like to be optimistic.)
I want to be a writer. If I could play guitar, I’d be in a band called Apocalypse And Beyond (long story) with the crazy people I call ‘friends’.
4) They leave.
But I’ll be back soon…