Buncha Random Stuff

I was going to write this like a Writing Cabin post, but there’s more to it than that allows.

I don’t often talk about it, but the way I work involves planning out multiple stories in my head, sometimes years before I can start writing them. When I surf the Internet, it’s usually with a purpose. Sometimes I add things to my Pinterest boards that I won’t need for years. If you look at The Hat board you’ll see things that haven’t been in any of the books, but will be at some point.

I was searching for a magical virus or something with the idea of providing a bit of humor to a future Hat story. One of the characters who gets introduced in Good Liniment is somewhat destined to become Lizzie’s friend. She’s a younger witch with plant based magic named Joyeux.

Randomly thinking it might be fun for Lizzie to come down with something stupid that Joyeux has to help her with. No plot, nothing that major. Then I stumbled upon something called Jumping Frenchmen of Maine. It’s a real disorder from the 1800s. I have a story roughed out involving St. Vitus’ Dance, and while this isn’t the same thing, it’s close enough to explain a magical antagonist’s arrival in North America. I might not ever write that story, but it was an interesting discovery.

PS: Do enough people know what a dibble is for me to make it a magical artifact from Joyeux’s past? Would I have to explain it with some depth?

Other than that, I added about 1200 to the nameless space trilogy. I had to physically weave between the boxes that have invaded the only private space I have, but it feels productive. It’s like writing inside a kid’s blanket fort in here.

I have a major concern about these words. Percy and Buffer have a shared history. They’ve been together since before the story opened as veterans who served aboard the same ship. They’re both disabled veterans now, and helped each other through the rough times.

I’ve done pretty well at keeping the situation flirty between them. Made simple enough because she’s a human and he’s a Space Chimp. Today, they put all their cards on the table and this poses multiple problems for me.

First, I’m not a romance author. I don’t seem to have that gene, but these aren’t romantic characters either. Am I crazy for even attempting this?

Second, I did this at 70,000 words. It’s not insta-love, but is it too soon if I can make this a trilogy? Would I be better served milking it until the last volume? It accomplishes a major step toward Percy’s evolution or character arc.

I also set this up with some backstory of how they became disabled veterans in the first place. I know we’re all supposed to hate backstory, but it feels really good where I plopped it. It’s an interesting tale, and it’s not in chapter one. It’s at 70K. I don’t feel bad about it at all here.

I need to come up with something new for Story Empire. Now that my Easter Egg post is live, it won’t take long for my turn to come around again. I have something roughed out, but I’m not sure I like it. What I really need is another series of some kind, like the one I posted about the Hero’s Journey. Maybe I can edit what I have into something presentable.

I’ll probably make a couple of editing passes on the nameless story, and look over the future SE post the same way.

I really need to come up with a title, but I want something reflective across the broader trilogy. I would like something like “Of X & Y,” where X & Y are variables across all three books. “Of Clay Pots & Clones” doesn’t quite sound right to me. Is that a catchy title for the first book? I’m at a loss here. “Of Spies & Clones” ??? One of you authors or big-time readers let me know if you would check the blurb on a title like this. The cover art will sell it as science fiction.

25 Comments

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25 responses to “Buncha Random Stuff

  1. If you’re not a romance author you can ping pong the relationship. Cards on the table, okay. But you get a lot play out of the tension, missed opportunities, sorry I got offered a job on Zumba 27 that can set up things you never saw coming.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. You’ve got lots of thoughts in that post. If I were reading a book that I knew was volume 1 in a trilogy, 70K would not be too soon to introduce some romance. I’m not sure how you’d carry that out with a human and a space chimp, but I’m sure you’ll manage something.

    And for the record, I had to look a dibble. Consider me educated!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Trust your gut. If romance at 70 k works for you, you’ll make it work for your story, I have no idea what a dibble is, and I’m not looking it up. You’ll have to make it work in the book. You write great stories, Craig. Do what feels right to you. As for Story Empire, I think it’s HARD to keep coming up with new ideas about writing. Good luck!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. I’m as clueless as you about the romance part. I have a little of it in my books, but always feel like it’s just awkward for everyone. And I don’t know what a dibble is. I’ll have to look it up.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I don’t know what a Dibble is, but fantasy is full of items with history. Readers won’t mind an explanation and those who know will appreciate seeing an obscure bit of lore turn up.

    For the romance, I would view it as a late first volume reveal, with an increase of stakes for those characters now that their relationship is changing.

    Deby Fredericks Author of the Minstrels of Skaythe series Read my blog, wyrmflight.wordpress.com ________________________________

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  6. Well, I had to look up “dibble” but with context clues, you should be okay.

    I like your title convention. The second one (with “Spies”) is catchier than the first. I hate titling things and often wait until I have a handle on everything before I settle on one. You might want to rough out two and three before deciding on your naming convention.

    The romance-angle is tricky. You’re crossing species, which is a challenge in and of itself. You also run the risk of losing the “will-they/won’t-they” tension if you settle it in book one. Since you know it’s a three-book saga, you could spend book one getting them together, book two tearing them apart, and book three putting them back together stronger than ever. But if they’re together for good now, the romantic tension is gone. As this isn’t a romance, that’s not necessarily a problem. Only you know if it is right for the story where you put it.

    And I’m fine with backstory, particularly when it’s not at the beginning. We need to know some history occasionally. I think you’re good on that front.

    Hope that covered everything. There was a “buncha” stuff in this post. Wishing you much luck with all the decisions you have to make. 🍀

    Liked by 1 person

  7. So many questions here, Craig. First of all, introducing a possible romance at 70,000 words is not too soon. I’m imagining all sorts of scenarios between a chimp and a human and all of them are humorous. 🙂 I did not know what a dibble was and had to look it up so that answers that question. I like the book title. It’s interesting, especially in the genre in which you write.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Hi. Rain, this is a busy post. Whew! I’ve no idea what a dibble is so you would probably need to explain. I like your ideas for The Hat.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Victoria Zigler

    Doesn’t feel too soon for a romance to be introduced in a trilogy. I’d potentially check out titles like those, yes. And I have no idea what a dibble is.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I like Clay Pots and Clones, partially because clay contrasted with clones makes me think of golems, and partially because clay pots are such an ancient technology contrasted with cloning.

    Liked by 1 person

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