The Celestial Way (COMPLETED PROJECT)

Обсъждаме лични художествени текстове и споделяме идеи за разхубавяването им.

Re: The Celestial Way (Burned Out Project)

Postby Radiant Dragon » Mon Aug 06, 2018 11:59 pm

I am officially calling it off. Changed the title to reflect the fact.

I don't have the strength to do this alone. Not yet. Maybe not even in the future.

Now... I must see how I'm supposed to continue with life.

Damn if this isn't my biggest failure to date.
IN ORDER TO RISE AGAINST THE TIDE, ONE MUST FIRST BE BELOW IT.

Аз съм графист, а не кечист.
(Ама вече разбирам и от кеч, ако трябва)
Аз съм. Това ми стига.

'Tis I, master of the first floor, aspirant to the last, the Radiant Dragon.


Accepting reality since 2017

And loving it since 2021


And now, I step fully into the Light, complete and replete. The way to Ascension is open.
-- some Dude, circa 2022

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Re: The Celestial Way (Burned Out Project)

Postby Кал » Tue Aug 07, 2018 8:14 am

Sounds like a good time to tell you about the biggest failure in my life ... so far. ;) (I probably already have, but there're always new spins to put on it.) Or just talk about some of those self-tripping aspects of writing you mentioned in your previous post.

Would you like to come get me from work one of these evenings? (This month, I'm not going to aikido.) Just give me a call in advance.
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Re: The Celestial Way (Revived Project)

Postby Radiant Dragon » Thu Nov 01, 2018 5:10 am

And we're off to Nanorimo again!

Starting Chapter 10 tomorrow (actually, later today), and moving on to Part II of Ascension War!

Here's to victory over oneself and to creative writing!
IN ORDER TO RISE AGAINST THE TIDE, ONE MUST FIRST BE BELOW IT.

Аз съм графист, а не кечист.
(Ама вече разбирам и от кеч, ако трябва)
Аз съм. Това ми стига.

'Tis I, master of the first floor, aspirant to the last, the Radiant Dragon.


Accepting reality since 2017

And loving it since 2021


And now, I step fully into the Light, complete and replete. The way to Ascension is open.
-- some Dude, circa 2022

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Re: The Celestial Way (Revived Project)

Postby Radiant Dragon » Sun Nov 18, 2018 2:04 am

After seventeen grueling days, filled with... all kinds of stuff - but also with much misery - I have finally finished Chapter 10.

It clocked at just about 10k words, epigraph included.

Fourth Interlude is next. Hopefully I'll get the emotional impact there right.
IN ORDER TO RISE AGAINST THE TIDE, ONE MUST FIRST BE BELOW IT.

Аз съм графист, а не кечист.
(Ама вече разбирам и от кеч, ако трябва)
Аз съм. Това ми стига.

'Tis I, master of the first floor, aspirant to the last, the Radiant Dragon.


Accepting reality since 2017

And loving it since 2021


And now, I step fully into the Light, complete and replete. The way to Ascension is open.
-- some Dude, circa 2022

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Re: The Celestial Way (Revived Project)

Postby Кал » Sun Nov 18, 2018 10:18 am

От сбирката при Люба насам се опитвам да събера думи, които да ти кажа, но явно все още съм прекалено препускащ/недоспиващ за нещо баш to the point. Ще опитам helter-skelter:

Ако усетиш, че самият процес на писане те изсмуква, вместо да те зарежда, тегли една огромна майна на NaNoWriMo и му дай пауза. За да не се доведеш до състояние, при което след ноември няма изобщо да искаш да си погледнеш текста...

Десет страници всеки ден не е посилно или дори полезно за всички типове пишещи хора. При някои има нужда от междинна акумулация на идеи, от gestation. Ти открил ли си от кои си?
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Re: The Celestial Way (Revived Project)

Postby Radiant Dragon » Sun Nov 18, 2018 10:51 pm

To my continuous chagrin, I've found out for myself that I'm one of the "slow" writers. At least when I'm faced with the grandest enemy of any artistic person - silence. It's possible that "my style" may change when I accumulate enough experience/skill one day, or even if merely my current life situation changes (not necessarily improving - but changing, and drastically at that).

However, when it comes to "The Celestial Way", I'm pushing myself past the limit for different reasons, rather than trying to "prove" myself, or to improve my writing. I'm pushing, because - and I think I've shared this before - I feel it deep down that there's a peculiar Zeitgeist currently going on, one that's (partly) invisible to the world at large, yet nonetheless it represents a golden opportunity for the ideas I've planted in this novel to flourish and have a wider outreach than they otherwise would have if I finished the novel, say, two years from now. To reinforce my point that I'm not imagining things - you remember my idea about a "noir" Pokemon visual novel, right? Well, guess what - a live-action/CGI movie that sports the same premise, with at least 50% overlap, is going out in cinemas on May next year.

Coincidence? Perhaps. But is it so when I feel it for my main project, my much dearer work of art? Yeah, I gotta speed down the road on the double. Rush the gauntlet. Storm the castle. Fuck the casualties. Fight now, heal later. Ad victoriam.

The other reason I'm on the clock with this one is also very personal: it's about my general future in life. If I make the book even half as good as I imagine it to be - well, let's not brag publicly on the internets. But if I fail - on to burger flipping for the next couple or so years. (Which would advance Plan B very furiously forward; but that's another topic) The problem is, I can't take it "slow" in this case either - my financial prospect are becoming more dire with each year, and I've intentionally have been tanking them even further, exactly because I'm betting damn near everything on my nascent writing career - I know, sad, but such is life - and long-standing physical and mental health issues didn't leave me with much opportunity to pick other "useful" skillsets on a professional level. (I do have some pretty deep expertise in various fields, but modern capitalist-driven society has no use - or desire - for them.)

There you have it - short, muddled, unfocused rant about why "Минута е много". It's do or die, and if I can't simply "do it", then I'd rather be like a Russian - умри, ама го направи.

Finally, some shameless plug-in: More alpha readers can't hurt just right about now; Part I is finally "done", and it turned out nice enough that I consider it beta reader-level material. I know this forum is mainly "just us and the gang", but I've talked (politely, not aggressively like some people - *cough*Уейн*cough*) irl with others outside of this social circle, and, well, nobody's interested - or worse, they feign interest, and leave it at that. I've still got some "spare ammo", but I'm saving those for a "big push" - when I'm 3/4 finished with the novel at least, since we're talking "professional peers" here.
Meh, rambling again. I'm gonna just close it, and return to actual writing. Per arda, ad astra.
IN ORDER TO RISE AGAINST THE TIDE, ONE MUST FIRST BE BELOW IT.

Аз съм графист, а не кечист.
(Ама вече разбирам и от кеч, ако трябва)
Аз съм. Това ми стига.

'Tis I, master of the first floor, aspirant to the last, the Radiant Dragon.


Accepting reality since 2017

And loving it since 2021


And now, I step fully into the Light, complete and replete. The way to Ascension is open.
-- some Dude, circa 2022

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Re: The Celestial Way (Revived Project)

Postby Radiant Dragon » Mon Nov 19, 2018 12:42 am

The Fourth Interlude is done. A bit on the lean side, but I thinks it's good enough for now. The ending especially made me very sad, so I guess I did right.

On to Chapter 11. This one should also be relatively short.
IN ORDER TO RISE AGAINST THE TIDE, ONE MUST FIRST BE BELOW IT.

Аз съм графист, а не кечист.
(Ама вече разбирам и от кеч, ако трябва)
Аз съм. Това ми стига.

'Tis I, master of the first floor, aspirant to the last, the Radiant Dragon.


Accepting reality since 2017

And loving it since 2021


And now, I step fully into the Light, complete and replete. The way to Ascension is open.
-- some Dude, circa 2022
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Re: The Celestial Way (...)

Postby mitseva » Tue Jan 29, 2019 12:05 pm

Благодаря за споделянето на процеса! Благодаря! Благодаря! :)
По време на Нано 2018 ръшнах да напиша моята история и осъзнах тия дни, че това ми е изиграло яко лоша шега. :Х Не си позволявах да поспра и да помисля върху сюжета, за сметка на това бързах да приключа и сега имам едни 65к думи, които имат нужда от яко ревизия, редакция и пренаписване. Те така!
Полезно ми е да виждам как работят другите. Изглежда и аз като теб съм от тези пишещи, които имат нужда историята бавничко да узрее и ферментира.
{excuse my Bulgarian, I feel burned out to write and think in English :D }
"As I walk through frozen sands
Through the flames of burning lands
My feet are torn, they're torn to strands
I will not thirst

As I cross the raging sea
Waves are crashing over me
They drag me down, they drag me down
I will not drown"

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Re: The Celestial Way (...)

Postby Radiant Dragon » Wed Jan 30, 2019 2:44 am

Скрит текст: покажи
Моля, моля. :)

Радвам се, че това псевдо-изливане* на творческата ми душа ти е от помощ. Сега ще трябва да погледна назад постовете и да видя колко точно съм хленчил по този вече три (четири) годишен казус. :D
(Моята педантичност често ме кара да бера срам дори тогава, когато според други няма нужда.)

Няма проблем, че постваш на български. Аз лично тая тема я започнах на английски основно защото бях прекален оптимист - 'ма както винаги визията ми за нещата се размина с реалността (затова се караме поне два пъти седмично - аз и реалността) и сега продължавам на така просто за да съм в "роля", и защото вече почти всичката ми писмена комуникация (и личните ми бележки, нРИ приключения, идеи и тн.) е само на този английски, поради което родния ми език вече е доста счупен граматически. (Вазов мЪ гледа лошо.)

Това беше лично към теб. Останалата част от поста е поредният ъпдейт рапорт актуално инфо хммм... нека на български го наречем "доразвиваща новина". :)

*("псевдо", защото ако реша изцяло да си излея душата публично, тук ще стане като Чернобил и ще трябва Гражданска защита да евакуира :mrgreen: )


Yesterday, I finished Chapter 13.
(Which, of course, means Chapter 11 & 12 are already done.)

It was quite an arduous task, and it took me a little over two weeks of (non-consecutive; I continue to have discipline/motivation problems) work. Veralla's POV is especially difficult, because she is a character that's rather challenging for me to portray right, and it's here where her personal arc takes off in truth. Also, this was a chapter which contained another combat-heavy scene, and in TCW those are significantly less in volume than in Astronomical Stakes - and that was another reason* this was a difficult section for me. And all those secondary characters? Yeah, they're weighing on me HEAVILY. Like, why did I write in my design docs a reasonable and fleshed out personal arc FOR EVERY ONE OF THEM!?
(Let's hope I manage to integrate semi-adequately said arcs during the re-write/edit... I feel failing hard to incorporate them right now.)

Between the December holidays and the first two weeks of January, I was totally burned-out. Like, I didn't write even a single word. I was THIS close to calling it quits again. But I didn't. Not because I'm a determined, tenacious person who completes everything they've set out to do**. It's because I'm lazy, and the thought of being stuck in a grey, boring day job frightens me, and because I still have insane hopes that this book is my greatest chance at beginning the journey on the road of my infinite dreams. (Or rather, starting on the path of my own Celestial Way - hehe, did I tell you how much I love symbolism?)

Now, in other, more brighter news, my family teased me about the (looong) writing process, once they learned Chapter 13 is technically the middle of the book. (Because I've planned 26 chapters in total.) As my brother so ingenuously put it, it was along that old anecdote about the wolf and the forest, but adapted for writers specifically. You know what I'm talking about***. :)
Since the analogy isn't going to translate as smoothly in English, I'm going to put here in original:

"Докога авторът пише книгата си? До средата - после вече я дописва."

Well, there you have it. Whether you find it funny or not (me and my family had a good laugh), I'm officially дописвам The Celestial Way. In reality, though, the real halfway point will be the end of Part II, but that's still FOUR more chapters away. (As well as one interlude.)

And they are going to be tough as hell.

I'm DEFINITELY taking a break after I'm finally done with this project. Or, you know, lie broken for a while. :?


* I still don't know why exactly I have troubles writing battle/action scenes these days - when I first started writing, they were a breeze, to the point my writing style was very Mathew Riley-ish (aka action, battle, battle, dialogue, action, battle battle), yet now I'm... stumped. Bummed. Dumbfounded. Creatively blocked to the point of furious frustration. Seriously, it takes me hours just to write a simple three-paragraph clash. I sincerely hope it's because of being too strung-up (aka the "try-hard" syndrome), and not because I've lost my touch.

** I like to think myself as such person, but ideal-me vs. current-iteration-me are separated by a vast gulf of delusional discrepancy due to lack of applied self-will atm.

*** And if you don't, then the anecdote goes thus: "Until when the wolf enters into the forest? Well, until the halfway point - after that, it starts to exit."
IN ORDER TO RISE AGAINST THE TIDE, ONE MUST FIRST BE BELOW IT.

Аз съм графист, а не кечист.
(Ама вече разбирам и от кеч, ако трябва)
Аз съм. Това ми стига.

'Tis I, master of the first floor, aspirant to the last, the Radiant Dragon.


Accepting reality since 2017

And loving it since 2021


And now, I step fully into the Light, complete and replete. The way to Ascension is open.
-- some Dude, circa 2022

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Re: The Celestial Way (...)

Postby Radiant Dragon » Mon Feb 18, 2019 5:04 am

After two weeks of hard work and, finally, some nascent signs of discipline, I completed writing Chapter 14.

It's the longest chapter to date in the book, coming just over 16 000 words (Using MS Word's "word count" feature). For comparison, the previous longest chapter (after the rewrite), Chapter 8, was around 15 000 words.

I don't think other Chapters will reach such high word counts, and frankly, I'd be glad if they do not. However, while nothing in my notes points to such future occurrence, there's still the possibility of the plot just... demanding some extra space.

In the end, I'm starting to wonder... just how big this novel is going to get. And that's after some considerable trimming of its scope. To me, who am already almost completely emotionally drained from this project, the story seems, well, not that sprawling, and while the stakes are certainly epic (at least they're set up that way), I don't think this is true for the scope of the actual action. As I said, so it seems to me.

Also, I feel like I've started skipping on the plot in order to get the manuscript finished more quickly, which means that I may have to add extra narrative, instead of cutting it out as I worried at one point I'd had to do. (The worry was coming from having done work, only to be scrapped in the future.)

Bottom line, this project has become a total apathy-permeated, willpower-alone-driven roller-coaster that I'll know what to make of only once it's done.

Until then: Work, work. If I manage to keep up the tempo, by my estimates I'll finish the manuscript by the middle of the year (June/July).
IN ORDER TO RISE AGAINST THE TIDE, ONE MUST FIRST BE BELOW IT.

Аз съм графист, а не кечист.
(Ама вече разбирам и от кеч, ако трябва)
Аз съм. Това ми стига.

'Tis I, master of the first floor, aspirant to the last, the Radiant Dragon.


Accepting reality since 2017

And loving it since 2021


And now, I step fully into the Light, complete and replete. The way to Ascension is open.
-- some Dude, circa 2022

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Re: The Celestial Way (...)

Postby mitseva » Tue Feb 19, 2019 9:58 am

Go, go, go! Важното е, че напредваш. :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: Надявам се да не съжаляваш после, че прескачаш моменти. Пък то дописването е неизбежно май. хм...
Докато те четях се сетих за една мисъл, която аз самата си повтарям от време на време: "Безмислено е да се откажеш от нещо, защото ще отнеме време, времето така или иначе си тече."
"As I walk through frozen sands
Through the flames of burning lands
My feet are torn, they're torn to strands
I will not thirst

As I cross the raging sea
Waves are crashing over me
They drag me down, they drag me down
I will not drown"

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Re: The Celestial Way (...)

Postby Radiant Dragon » Wed Feb 20, 2019 5:17 am

Ами то аз не че баш прескачам, по-скоро ако усетя, че се "бълтая" (тая дума за пръв път я употребявам писмено) спрямо дадена сцена, активирам в действие този принцип:

The 22 rules of storytelling, according to Pixar wrote:#5: Simplify. Focus. Combine characters. Hop over detours. You'll feel like you're losing valuable stuff but it sets you free.


Взето оттук.

Не казвам, че винаги важи. Но помага, когато времето е от значение. :)
IN ORDER TO RISE AGAINST THE TIDE, ONE MUST FIRST BE BELOW IT.

Аз съм графист, а не кечист.
(Ама вече разбирам и от кеч, ако трябва)
Аз съм. Това ми стига.

'Tis I, master of the first floor, aspirant to the last, the Radiant Dragon.


Accepting reality since 2017

And loving it since 2021


And now, I step fully into the Light, complete and replete. The way to Ascension is open.
-- some Dude, circa 2022

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Re: The Celestial Way (...)

Postby Radiant Dragon » Tue Feb 26, 2019 10:10 pm

Unforeseen consequences.

Half-Life gave that phrase legendary status.

In my case, yep, those follow-up ontological ramifications definitely came out of nowhere. And they hit me like a gamma-ray burst.

Five days without a single sentence written.

Thankfully, I'm better now. If I could grope for a suitable metaphor, it was like the aircraft of my being crashing into an impossibly high mountain. But then I fashioned a snowboard from the remains, and successfully navigated down the perilous cliffs to the nearest urban center.

Now I'm looking for an airport from where I'll take my next flight, and hopefully, there won't be any more stormy weather for a while.

I managed to write today, out of sheer willpower. It seems that if you stick with something for long enough, it's remains durable - or at least present - even during great turmoil.

Which means, victory.

Victory in a cold, numb, heartbroken way, but victory nonetheless.

I missed my original estimate for completing Part II, but I stand by my prediction for completing the whole book - I shall have it done by mid-year.
IN ORDER TO RISE AGAINST THE TIDE, ONE MUST FIRST BE BELOW IT.

Аз съм графист, а не кечист.
(Ама вече разбирам и от кеч, ако трябва)
Аз съм. Това ми стига.

'Tis I, master of the first floor, aspirant to the last, the Radiant Dragon.


Accepting reality since 2017

And loving it since 2021


And now, I step fully into the Light, complete and replete. The way to Ascension is open.
-- some Dude, circa 2022

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Re: The Celestial Way (...)

Postby Radiant Dragon » Thu Mar 07, 2019 5:13 pm

Finished Chapter 15 on Monday. Had to apply a giant placeholder at the highpoint of the chapter itself.

Because I have no idea how to start a philosophical discussion from zero. Like, I can't figure out how to escalate things to get the dialog "in the zone" and make some important exposition be an organic part of the story.

A friend of mine suggested I do like Sanderson had done once: just handwave it for now and move on, then return to write it later. In Sanderson's case, he couldn't figure out how a surgeon was supposed to perform some sort of operation, so he literally wrote, "He fixed it, and made it better", and continued with the manuscript. So that's (somewhat) what I did, too.
(In my case, I... wanted to handwave too hard. Now my (mental) arm hurts.)

Of course, I'll have to return at some point, and put back actual narrative. I plan to do so after I'm done with the rest of part two. (Two chapters, one interlude)

Now I'm slowly making my way into Chapter 16. The last couple of days have been a grind, but I hope to pick up the pace again soon.
IN ORDER TO RISE AGAINST THE TIDE, ONE MUST FIRST BE BELOW IT.

Аз съм графист, а не кечист.
(Ама вече разбирам и от кеч, ако трябва)
Аз съм. Това ми стига.

'Tis I, master of the first floor, aspirant to the last, the Radiant Dragon.


Accepting reality since 2017

And loving it since 2021


And now, I step fully into the Light, complete and replete. The way to Ascension is open.
-- some Dude, circa 2022

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Re: The Celestial Way (...)

Postby Radiant Dragon » Fri Mar 15, 2019 5:41 pm

Feeling kinda low on motivation again. :|

Got sick for the second time within a month. Combo was lack of sleep + mountain trip (volatile weather) + trpg session the next day (lots of talking since GM).
The result - brutal coughing fits + yet more lack of sleep. Combine with a cooler weather in general for the past five or so days, and you've got a recipe for one very frustrated and stressed writer.

Was able to push out only a single scene for Chapter 16, but it turned out little over 2k words, so at least that's something. Yet, here was I, daring to hope I'd actually finish something (Part II) earlier than my (self-appointed) deadline, and then... this fubar happens.

Like Dick Dasterdly from Wacky Racers used to say: "Drat, drat, and double drat!"


Also, I'm considering dropping the "philosophy dialogue" in Chapter 15 entirely. The story itself won't suffer from this move; the only problem would be that Magus Dei will become even more a background character than he already is, when in reality I had planned him to have a much more central role. (While, ironically, said role is being slowly taken over by Glawlrhain, who's mainly featured in Veralla's POV; it probably makes sense in hindsight, but... eh...)

So, I'll make a couple more attempts to salvage this troublesome part, and if that fails, I'll just burn the damn bridge.

Meanwhile, onward with Ch. 16. So far I like how this one is turning out, especially given its title - "Changing Ways".
IN ORDER TO RISE AGAINST THE TIDE, ONE MUST FIRST BE BELOW IT.

Аз съм графист, а не кечист.
(Ама вече разбирам и от кеч, ако трябва)
Аз съм. Това ми стига.

'Tis I, master of the first floor, aspirant to the last, the Radiant Dragon.


Accepting reality since 2017

And loving it since 2021


And now, I step fully into the Light, complete and replete. The way to Ascension is open.
-- some Dude, circa 2022

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Re: The Celestial Way (...)

Postby Radiant Dragon » Thu Apr 04, 2019 5:50 pm

So yesterday (or rather, very early this morning) I finally completed PART II.

The Fifth Interlude surprised me a bit both in terms of length and narrative direction. I ended up incorporating some chunks from main antagonist's backstory file almost wholesale, but they sounded very appropriate and emotional, so for once I'd ended up saving time from having done something in advance.

Chapter 16 turned out to be another wordcount behemoth (nearly 14k words), and that's with me trimming heavily towards the end. Which means, when revision times come, yeah... this book is definitely getting thicc.

Chapter 17 turned out splendidly for a change. It again surprised me slightly in terms of structure, but I think the end result is worth it. I managed to describe the sparring scene in particularly fluid and engaging detail, on par with the best combat scenes in "Космически залог", so I guess I've still 'got it'. The hatching scene may need some additional fine-tuning afterwards, but I think it turned out well, too.

As for Chapter 15's "grand" dialogue scene... Ehhh. What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas. I did it, barely. It turned out... something very different, and very... unfocused. Possibly forced in some parts. It has strong emotional charge, at least, yet it will require heavy revisions once I get readers' feedback or an editor's assistance. But at least IT'S DONE.

Time for a rest?

No.

Nine chapters, three interludes, and an epilogue are still awaiting me. And most of them are gonna be tricky, too. And long. And draining.

But at the same time, epic? Hopefully. I already smashed through all novel-length limits, might as well continue onto Sanderson's path and create a 400k monstrosity.
Gonna have one hell of a time to elevator-pitch it, though.

I'll live and see.

EDIT: Using MS Word's word-count feature, the manuscript totals 136k words. Using the "classic" editors method... damn. 175k, plus-minus ~3-5k for line breaks.
IN ORDER TO RISE AGAINST THE TIDE, ONE MUST FIRST BE BELOW IT.

Аз съм графист, а не кечист.
(Ама вече разбирам и от кеч, ако трябва)
Аз съм. Това ми стига.

'Tis I, master of the first floor, aspirant to the last, the Radiant Dragon.


Accepting reality since 2017

And loving it since 2021


And now, I step fully into the Light, complete and replete. The way to Ascension is open.
-- some Dude, circa 2022

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Re: The Celestial Way (...)

Postby Radiant Dragon » Sun Apr 14, 2019 3:26 am

I decided to drop the current sub-title to The Celestial Way*. It simply doesn't mesh anymore with the story that's shaping up to this moment. Sure, there's war, and it's pretty terrible, and also the motivation of the main antagonist is to achieve a higher state of existence for him and for everyone else. Yet as I write further and further along the plot, these elements become simply that - elements, mere aftermath of the tale's core essence. And that essence is much more tied to themes like redemption, integrity, perseverance, forgiveness, and compassion, with love tying them all together; at least I think so, from my perspective. (It may turn out that alpha and beta readers think otherwise. "Death of the author" paradigm also applies.)

So yeah, I'm removing the current title of Book 1. For now, I'm not replacing it with a substitute - because... I can't think up of something accurate enough to capture the profoundness that encapsulates my feelings toward the story, and the story itself. So, I'll probably think of attaching something (if anything) after I'm done with the manuscript.
Скрит текст: покажи
*If you don't know/remember what it was, it was called "Ascension War".


In other news, Chapter 18 is nearly done. I need only to write a backstory-reveal/motivation-foreshadowing scene which doesn't "tie up" the narrative, so I could return to it at a later date. For now, I desire more to move onto Chapter 19. The chapter itself was supposed to be a depressing downer moment in the story, yet as I wrote it it became weirdly uplifting instead, and the characters actually renewed their convictions, instead of experiencing hopelessness. (<---was that one of the signs of good fiction or not? Characters taking control?)

Also, yeah, I definitively still have emotional investment in this story. If I can still shed tears and lose control of my fingers over the keyboard... yeah. Can't wait to reach the end. I think, after all would be said and done, this book will be worth the effort even if it never gets wider recognition.
IN ORDER TO RISE AGAINST THE TIDE, ONE MUST FIRST BE BELOW IT.

Аз съм графист, а не кечист.
(Ама вече разбирам и от кеч, ако трябва)
Аз съм. Това ми стига.

'Tis I, master of the first floor, aspirant to the last, the Radiant Dragon.


Accepting reality since 2017

And loving it since 2021


And now, I step fully into the Light, complete and replete. The way to Ascension is open.
-- some Dude, circa 2022

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Re: The Celestial Way (...)

Postby Radiant Dragon » Sun Apr 21, 2019 6:43 pm

Dammit.

Remember kids, whenever you think it's gonna be smooth sailing from now on, there's always an armada behind the horizon waiting to blast your tiny sailboat via orbital bombardment.

In my case, I thought, "Gee, my life is finally getting somewhere", and suddenly it wasn't.

If this unending cycle continues, I'll have to upgrade to a permanent Condition Yellow outlook-wise.
IN ORDER TO RISE AGAINST THE TIDE, ONE MUST FIRST BE BELOW IT.

Аз съм графист, а не кечист.
(Ама вече разбирам и от кеч, ако трябва)
Аз съм. Това ми стига.

'Tis I, master of the first floor, aspirant to the last, the Radiant Dragon.


Accepting reality since 2017

And loving it since 2021


And now, I step fully into the Light, complete and replete. The way to Ascension is open.
-- some Dude, circa 2022

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Re: The Celestial Way (...)

Postby Radiant Dragon » Sat Apr 27, 2019 3:49 pm

Chapter 19 is done. I also plugged the dangling scene in Chapter 18, although its bits are still floating in only semi-coherent manner.

Both chapters turned out a little shaky, but that shouldn't be a problem if the next couple of chapters come out solid enough. The good news is the story and character arcs are finally entering the final stages! A whooping 7 chapters of final stages, but final nonetheless. :)

If only I could say "Phew, the hard stuff is done, now everything is pew-pew and flag waving", buuut... yep, I can't. I've still got some pretty heavy narrative that waits to happen. To be epic, you have to endure till the end. Or something like that.

Ah, who I'm kidding. The ending is probably going to be the hardest part of the book to write yet.

Onward to Chapter 20 - "Clearing Ways".
(Whose epigraph still remains incomplete/unwritten - gods, writing poetry is effing hard.)

EDIT: Bits float no more in Ch. 18, and behold! - the epigraph to Chapter 20 is badly written, yet now complete!
IN ORDER TO RISE AGAINST THE TIDE, ONE MUST FIRST BE BELOW IT.

Аз съм графист, а не кечист.
(Ама вече разбирам и от кеч, ако трябва)
Аз съм. Това ми стига.

'Tis I, master of the first floor, aspirant to the last, the Radiant Dragon.


Accepting reality since 2017

And loving it since 2021


And now, I step fully into the Light, complete and replete. The way to Ascension is open.
-- some Dude, circa 2022

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Re: The Celestial Way (...)

Postby Radiant Dragon » Mon May 27, 2019 2:33 am

So, after a very stilted, frustratingly nerve-wracking start-stop manner of intermittent writing, Chapter 20 is finally complete.

Hmph, "Clearing Ways" indeed.

At least, I think my writer's block is finally over. Six more chapters, three interludes, and one epilogue to go!

Also, I've been actually done with Ch. 20 two days ago, but managed to post the progress report only just now because I had unpleasant RL issues, which kept me from remembering to take 10 minutes to note this topic here. (Which... wow, it's been a month since the last update. So, I guess no early-finish bonus.)

Well, onto the Sixth Interlude and then Chapter 21. I think this would be over soon. The end if definitely in sight.

I can only hope the effort would be worth it.

(PS. According to one of my alpha readers - from the grand total of two - it's not. Funny, heh? It's okay, I don't hold it up against her, she hasn't read "epic"-style fiction before, so the taste still isn't cultivated in her. I remember how much I've struggled with Zindell years back, or my utter disappointment when I read "Лунна дъга" for the first time - and now, oh wow... so much stars!)
(I guess she expected an Astronomical Stake-styled encore. And Part I of TCW is certainly "fast and furious"... but Part II I've aimed much more for the inner struggle than the outward world. Well, perhaps her opinion would still improve when Parts III and IV roll around - the "Oh, wow, KA-BLAM!"-meter is way higher in them, alongside the other inspiring stuff. :P )

PPS. And hey, I've finally written that "poetical" Chapter 20 epigraph. SO, BONUS POINTS I GUESS!?!? :mrgreen:
IN ORDER TO RISE AGAINST THE TIDE, ONE MUST FIRST BE BELOW IT.

Аз съм графист, а не кечист.
(Ама вече разбирам и от кеч, ако трябва)
Аз съм. Това ми стига.

'Tis I, master of the first floor, aspirant to the last, the Radiant Dragon.


Accepting reality since 2017

And loving it since 2021


And now, I step fully into the Light, complete and replete. The way to Ascension is open.
-- some Dude, circa 2022

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Re: The Celestial Way (...)

Postby mitseva » Mon May 27, 2019 11:28 am

Yay! Good to you! Good work! :D
I'm happy to hear that your block is over. Tht's great news. Go on strong and steady.
If you need beta readers (or alfa) - I'm here. ;)
"As I walk through frozen sands
Through the flames of burning lands
My feet are torn, they're torn to strands
I will not thirst

As I cross the raging sea
Waves are crashing over me
They drag me down, they drag me down
I will not drown"

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Re: The Celestial Way (...)

Postby Radiant Dragon » Tue May 28, 2019 2:01 am

NANI!? What's this!? A person has offered to be an alpha reader???

C'est impossible!!!

Joke aside, I am, indeed, highly surprised - given how I've been on a quest of sorts for the past three years to gather alphas, and had no luck to this point. Granted, my social contacts are quite low in number, whilst the requirements for the readers I sought were... limiting, so the "quest" wasn't much of a seeking as it was of inner head-banging as I despaired at the lack of "recruitment pools".

Thus why I practically wrote most of the novel on my own, I process I learned is exceedingly more difficult to do than when one has support from volunteer readers/fellow writers/fans/family/etc. I can say with confidence, that a lone author faces an order of magnitude more difficult task than one who's got a "backbone".

Given this, I am more than happy to accept your offer for alpha readership. :)
I believe I have your email coordinates - if you confirm yourself as an alpha, I'll send Part I and Part II of "The Celestial Way" for reading at your convenience.

Also, thank you for your wishes!
IN ORDER TO RISE AGAINST THE TIDE, ONE MUST FIRST BE BELOW IT.

Аз съм графист, а не кечист.
(Ама вече разбирам и от кеч, ако трябва)
Аз съм. Това ми стига.

'Tis I, master of the first floor, aspirant to the last, the Radiant Dragon.


Accepting reality since 2017

And loving it since 2021


And now, I step fully into the Light, complete and replete. The way to Ascension is open.
-- some Dude, circa 2022

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Re: The Celestial Way (...)

Postby mitseva » Tue May 28, 2019 2:38 pm

Юпииии! Horray! Yay! {very happy dance}
I'm in! Give it to me... :D :D :D
I'm always so happy to read works from fellow writers. It's great joy for me! Thanks! :mrgreen:
"As I walk through frozen sands
Through the flames of burning lands
My feet are torn, they're torn to strands
I will not thirst

As I cross the raging sea
Waves are crashing over me
They drag me down, they drag me down
I will not drown"

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Re: The Celestial Way (...)

Postby Radiant Dragon » Sun Jun 02, 2019 10:34 pm

Sixth Interlude and Chapter 21 are done.

From this point on, everything starts to ramp up toward the final showdown - even though there's still a few key philosophical and character-defining points be made even in the midst of the action. :)

Five chapters, two interludes, and one epilogue remaining. (I think this is already sort of an official countdown.)

Now, onward to the ultimate chapter of Part III - Chapter 22, "Defending the Way"!
IN ORDER TO RISE AGAINST THE TIDE, ONE MUST FIRST BE BELOW IT.

Аз съм графист, а не кечист.
(Ама вече разбирам и от кеч, ако трябва)
Аз съм. Това ми стига.

'Tis I, master of the first floor, aspirant to the last, the Radiant Dragon.


Accepting reality since 2017

And loving it since 2021


And now, I step fully into the Light, complete and replete. The way to Ascension is open.
-- some Dude, circa 2022

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Re: The Celestial Way (...)

Postby Radiant Dragon » Fri Jun 07, 2019 1:08 pm

A lot happened in the past 96 hours.

To say it in terse terms, MAJOR LIFE STUFF affected my motivation and desire to work on the book. I was falling "behind schedule" in terms of the internal quotas I'd set in my mind, so to speak.

So, yesterday I decided to compensate in an unorthodox way: by taking an energy drink - one of the big ones - during the writing session.

Well.

Even though there were side effects, that session was one of the most productive I've had ever since I started writing TCW. I nailed down 2900 words in one go, and they were pretty good, too. There had been three, maybe four other times when I was able to reach a comparative output, and while this wasn't the greatest writing session on this book, or the most voluminous (I think my record was 3,5k+ or something), I felt pretty damn inspired.

And now I know why so many (famous) creators, both past and present, have such an affinity for stimulants of all kinds. It makes a world of difference.

The payback, however, is considerably less stellar. Insert a "Never again" meme somewhere along the lines.
IN ORDER TO RISE AGAINST THE TIDE, ONE MUST FIRST BE BELOW IT.

Аз съм графист, а не кечист.
(Ама вече разбирам и от кеч, ако трябва)
Аз съм. Това ми стига.

'Tis I, master of the first floor, aspirant to the last, the Radiant Dragon.


Accepting reality since 2017

And loving it since 2021


And now, I step fully into the Light, complete and replete. The way to Ascension is open.
-- some Dude, circa 2022

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Re: The Celestial Way (...)

Postby Radiant Dragon » Fri Jun 14, 2019 4:19 am

Finished Chapter 22. I wasn't entirely satisfied how the climax - the great battle at Kryoon City - turned out; it felt forced and uneven in some parts to me. It's probably going to be one of the major scenes I'll have to rewrite at a later date. But, as Dan said, I'll count my victories and pat myself on the back that now I have a text to work with in the future - and that's always easier than staring at the dreadful white screen.

And with that, PART III is complete.

Man, I'm so tired. And I still have ways to go. Haha, ways.

I'm concerned writer's fatigue is setting hard into my psyche. That is Bad, with capital B. I mean, the worst thing a writer can fuck up is the ending; a strong ending can save a dull book, while a weak ending can ruin a great one.
I pray to the Great Cosmos to give me strength just for a few last, final pushes. I'm so close. I have to succeed.

Guess what? The next chapter, ironically, again carries a name that pertains to my RL situation - Chapter 23, "The Way Abides".
If I knew my life would dance to the tune of an imaginary story... I'd probably have tried to write Iyashikei. (That's a capital "i")
IN ORDER TO RISE AGAINST THE TIDE, ONE MUST FIRST BE BELOW IT.

Аз съм графист, а не кечист.
(Ама вече разбирам и от кеч, ако трябва)
Аз съм. Това ми стига.

'Tis I, master of the first floor, aspirant to the last, the Radiant Dragon.


Accepting reality since 2017

And loving it since 2021


And now, I step fully into the Light, complete and replete. The way to Ascension is open.
-- some Dude, circa 2022

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Re: The Celestial Way (...)

Postby mitseva » Fri Jun 14, 2019 9:23 pm

Broken Dragon wrote:If I knew my life would dance to the tune of an imaginary story...


Говори ми, говори ми... Това преплитане между живия живот и историите, които пиша, е хем очарователно, хем стряскащо. На моменти се чудя първо историята ли е и после живота или обратното. Лудница! :mrgreen:

Поздравления за завършването на трета част. :)
"As I walk through frozen sands
Through the flames of burning lands
My feet are torn, they're torn to strands
I will not thirst

As I cross the raging sea
Waves are crashing over me
They drag me down, they drag me down
I will not drown"

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Re: The Celestial Way (...)

Postby Radiant Dragon » Sun Jun 16, 2019 4:19 am

Благодаря! Днеска изпрасках още 2к думи и нещата засега се очертават грубичко, обаче съм на финалната права! Ще му се види края най-сетне, ей...

И да, след като пет години ми зрее и три я работя активно, не съм напълно учуден, че "Звездният път" влияе и върху "реалния" ми живот. Най-малкото ми служи за личен пример (което отново е супер-иронично) - особено Верала, която е такъв Wide-Eyed Idealist, че в началото ми беше супер трудно да я пиша, но после взех да я "чувам" по-ясно и ми стана доста по-забавно да следя света през нейните очи. :)

'Бе най-вече да туря точката и ако после намеря откъде, да си махна главата с един хубав абсент - след това ще съм напълно отворен за бъдещето.
IN ORDER TO RISE AGAINST THE TIDE, ONE MUST FIRST BE BELOW IT.

Аз съм графист, а не кечист.
(Ама вече разбирам и от кеч, ако трябва)
Аз съм. Това ми стига.

'Tis I, master of the first floor, aspirant to the last, the Radiant Dragon.


Accepting reality since 2017

And loving it since 2021


And now, I step fully into the Light, complete and replete. The way to Ascension is open.
-- some Dude, circa 2022

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Radiant Dragon
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Re: The Celestial Way (...)

Postby Radiant Dragon » Wed Jun 19, 2019 1:06 am

So, it seems the problem with making inroads with Part IV isn't exactly writer's fatigue - it more like writer's blindness.

I mean, I know the macro-structure of Part IV, but actually... that's about it. I know stuff like "now This is supposed to happen, then This, then That, and after That, follows This and That", but the details of how those things happen or the logical environment which surrounds their emergence have... well, I haven't really thought about them. I had left them all this time under section "This is the ending, don't bother thinking about it now", because I've been so engrossed in making sure everything in the middle worked right, because there were many interlinked elements at play there, while the ending is pretty linear plot-wise, like Stuff>Stuff>More Stuff>Twist>Major Stuff>Finale>Epilogue. And so, this deceptively simple narrative structure made me neglect it... until now.

Because, frankly, there were times I didn't think I'd make it so far. Going back through this topic is proof enough for how close I was several times to calling the whole project off. Yet now, I forge on, but keeping with strict daily quotas is much different when one has to simultaneously work out plot details in comparison to just pounding out an outline into readable form.

My notes certainly are making a run for their money right now. I don't know if I'm much of on outliner in my blood, but if I haven't applied the Snowflake in the early stages of this project, I'd be in major trouble now. So thank God for that.

However, my work quota is now in over 10% deficit, which makes me kinda stressed.
IN ORDER TO RISE AGAINST THE TIDE, ONE MUST FIRST BE BELOW IT.

Аз съм графист, а не кечист.
(Ама вече разбирам и от кеч, ако трябва)
Аз съм. Това ми стига.

'Tis I, master of the first floor, aspirant to the last, the Radiant Dragon.


Accepting reality since 2017

And loving it since 2021


And now, I step fully into the Light, complete and replete. The way to Ascension is open.
-- some Dude, circa 2022

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Radiant Dragon
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Re: The Celestial Way (...)

Postby Radiant Dragon » Wed Jun 19, 2019 10:20 pm

Finished the Seventh Interlude.

I kinda went ahead with this one, because while it follows after Chapter 23, when I started writing that chapter, I wrote the end of it first - and I just wanted to continue the tone that was set afterward.
The reason I'm mentioning this as a separate entry is because this Interlude is the largest by far up to this point - 3.6k words, a chapter unto itself.

Since this is the point of "here's my take on things" for the antagonist (plus some plot setup - yes, I know, the last quarter of a book is NOT for shit like this, BUT! the story demands it), I was aiming for the epicly emotional (or maybe the emotionally epic?) tone, yet what in the end came out was... meandering. I do not know. I don't care anymore. I have no strength left to care.

Next up I want to write the beginning of Chapter 24, because it's rather clear in my head, and after that... no idea. It's possible that my approach to the whole Part IV may be a lot more scattershot than in the previous parts.
The only thing that matters is to convey at least good enough all the climatic points that I have in my head. They are something like 80% of the whole deal when I started writing this! Wait, that's not true. But you know how it goes - the ending has to be the crowning moment. Ugh, I'm so taking a break after this one...

Скрит текст: покажи
If I have to be honest? The elements of the book I'm most proud of are the chapter epigraphs, the four preludes explaining the protagonists backstory (which were written wayyy back), the (SPOILER), the three (SPOILER), and some other specific moments like the (SPOILER). The First Interlude, as well the Prologue are also very sweet in terms of hooking the reader (at least I hope so).

And, while not a working part of the book per se, I'm super hyped for the setting itself - the stuff I've imagined this galaxy has! But yeah, enough worldbuilder's bragging. I can promise one thing though - if this novel goes gold, I'm totally EXPLODING with the most wildest things I've ever imagined crammed into a sci-fi metaphysical transhumanist far-future space opera with dragons - with a strong emphasis on the inspiring positivism!
IN ORDER TO RISE AGAINST THE TIDE, ONE MUST FIRST BE BELOW IT.

Аз съм графист, а не кечист.
(Ама вече разбирам и от кеч, ако трябва)
Аз съм. Това ми стига.

'Tis I, master of the first floor, aspirant to the last, the Radiant Dragon.


Accepting reality since 2017

And loving it since 2021


And now, I step fully into the Light, complete and replete. The way to Ascension is open.
-- some Dude, circa 2022

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Radiant Dragon
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