I am kaitco

a writer's log

Dana writes! Wednesday, May 11, 2011

After finishing a session of reading through my heavy list of webcomics today, I came upon an interesting answer to something that’s been troubling me for a long while.

While annoyed that so many of the comics with the best writing tend to eventually be about lesbians, I thought about my long list and the fact that Damen, too, reads webcomics (again, pulling from my own personality). In considering my list of comics, I wondered what current comics Damen might (have) read. Least I Could Do seems a little boorish for him and Questionable Content would probably annoy him. He might find some interest in Orneryboy, but really I thought he would enjoy xkcd and Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal more than anything else I read; not so much slice of life, but relatively interesting with math spliced within the jokes every so often.

Further thinking about what Damen would read, I wondered if I should develop the idea that Damen eventually creates a comic of his own. I’ve already established the artistic talent, but it’s the writing that would probably stump him. Just because he reads often, does not mean he would be able to write a strong story of his own, which led me to wondering about who could write the comic for him. Immediately, I thought of Damen and Brit hunkered down together and occasionally fighting about the comic, but the more I thought about it, the more I hated it. Brit does not strike me as a writer and to make her such, would mean I’d have to draw more of my own persona into her and from the very onset of this novel, even before I’d settled on a name for her, I’d sworn to myself that Brit would not be me. So, who to choose…who to choose to write this comic for Damen?

I not only leaped to Dana’s unfinished character for this task, I also was able to further develop her friendship with Damen. Just the other day, I was thinking to myself that Damen needed someone to talk to about Brit and Corey other than one another. I even played around with the idea of him bouncing ideas off of Anthony, but there’s no way that would be fruitful or even remotely characteristic of either of them. Dana fills this space like the straight, long four-block Tetris piece you had been wanting, twelve pieces earlier.

I’ve considered the idea of the shared comic throughout the day and, while I originally wanted Damen to “takeover” my comic “Little Green Men,” it feels unnatural. Nothing about LGM is Damenesque and really, it’s a project all its own. I’ve decided they’ll create these dramatic works of art together. What Dana will do with these in the very end, I don’t know, but perhaps I’ll work that part into Angel’s story.

Today, I made Dana an AIM profile (DanaBGr8) like I did with Damen, Brit, Corey and Tabitha and I think I freaked out a friend of mine today when I was describing what it was like to be so enthralled about writing and characterization, so I’ll try to remember to keep those kinds of thoughts focused to just this blog.

I wrote 528 words today (demanded that he have something to eat.) and would have written more, but first-job took a lot out of me today and it won’t be getting any better tomorrow, so I think I just need some rest tonight…and no bake cookies. Especially the cookies.

 

Brendon’s Camera Friday, February 18, 2011

Filed under: Artwork,Writing — kaitco @ 11:59 pm
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by Brendon Small ~ Home Movies Bonus CD

I can no longer come up with decent titles again.

Well, since I have been writing since I got home this evening, I managed 2516 words (me mad and I just blurted out whatever.”) which should make up a bit of my non-writing yesterday.

I did another sketch. This time I tried to create Ben’s body as well as that of another manga-ish character. It was mediocre at best, but I think if I keep practicing, I may have something worthwhile.

I haven’t got much else to say other than I’m finally at the part when Damen and Brit are getting to know each other. Such fun! 🙂

 

iDraw Thursday, February 17, 2011

Filed under: Artwork,Favorite,Writing — kaitco @ 11:59 pm
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I’ve been watching a lot of “InuYasha” lately and it has got me thinking alot about drawing and learning Japanese again. Mostly the former; I think the latter is a project best left as a reward after I send Damen off for rejections letters.

My father is an artist and it’s long since irritated me that I haven’t inherited too much of his talent in the visual arts. I have tried to play this off by saying that I am a literary “artist,” but when I struggle to do something as simple as draw a face or eyes, I feel like a total failure.

Anyhoo…early this morning, I was bit by the drawing bug while “InuYasha” was playing in the background and put cheap pencil to paper. I started, like my protagonist, by drawing an eye. I’m not entirely sure whose eye this is since I’ve not moved onto colour yet, but I’d like to call it “Jessie Eye” since it looks really striking.

From “Jessie Eye,” I did some searching on drawing tutorials, etc. and had the strong desire to draw a manga face, particularly Kagome from “InuYasha.” I know I didn’t really capture her and, honestly, there’s no way to tell who it is since most manga/anime characters look identical, so I call this one “Manga Face” for now.

Once the manga bug dug a little deeper in my skin, this sensation to truly create something original arose within me and I decided to recreate my character Ben as a manga character. Ben is one of two main characters in a comic I created called “Little Green Men.” I created it and have been drawing Ben and his counterpart Al, in “Little Green Men” since I was about ten years old and completely enamoured with “The X-Files.” And, so I set to work to make Ben into a manga for “Ben revisited.”

Sometime, somewhere, somehow I’ll find an image of the way Ben originally looked and load these side-by-side for comparison. I have to say, I like Ben as a manga and I think this was part of my main rationale for not progressing with “Little Green Men” as my own little webcomic for fun. I can barely draw as it is, and while the writer in me can come up with some great wit and sarcasm for a comic, my inability to draw anything better than a fourth grader kept my pencil in the cup. Mostly, it seems like I’ve always known how Ben and Al were supposed to look, but I wasn’t sure how I’d draw people or how I wanted them to look, so I kept the whole project hold. Drawing Ben as a manga, however, has ignited a drawing fire in me that hasn’t been lit in…well, almost a decade at this point. The real interesting thing was not only did I recreate Ben as a manga, but I also inked him a little in Photoshop, like a real artist who knew what she was doing! 🙂

Needless to say, I gave up on writing for the rest of the night around 3:30am, but later in the day, I DID manage to write another 128 words in Damen (meanwhile the anthology’s still being well-received), which is a bonus either way.

 

Edit: My timing on this post was way off; I’m not sure what happened between 11:15 and 4am, but I definitely got lost in the middle on this one…

 

Coming together Monday, November 9, 2009

Filed under: Writing — kaitco @ 1:21 am
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I haven’t had the drive to write much until the beginning of November and then, I suffered a death in the family which killed -er- hurt my drive, but today is the first fully motivated day I have had and had been able to use to the best of my abilities. I got a good deal of my laundry and general house cleaning done and I have come to terms with a so far unacknowledged obsession of mine.

I am very addicted to the Internet. I am constantly checking the news via Google at work and at home, the first thing I do is go straight from my PC. Between checking e-mail, Twitter, new forum posts, Facebook and my ever-growing list of webcomics, I have found very little time to do much else with my time, which meant that the house work was shirked day in and day out, which only aided in exasperating my growing depression. Today, I decided that Sundays are going to be not only Internet-free, but computer-free as well. I get to cheat a bit and make a quick playlist to have some music to guide the rest of my day, but I told myself I am unable to do anything on my computer until 12:01 Monday morning. Around 8:00PM, I thought was I going to crack, but I maintained and got so much done that I feel like a new person.

Despite all the goals I had lain out for myself, I did not get the novel completed by my 25th birthday. I got a very rough draft completed on October 2nd, which, while still being some kind of accomplishment, was still not what I wanted. I wanted a full manuscript when I turned 25. I wanted to be able to look at and say, “Wow! Look what you did!” as a birthday present to myself. Instead, when I realized that my goal simply was not feasible, I spent the day playing old video games (Mario N64 is too much fun, BTW) and got the rough draft completed a week later, once the heat was no longer weighing on my shoulders. Unfortunately, the strain of doing so much writing in a short period of time took its toll on me and that, combined with what I deemed as complete failure, kept from even looking at the thing for the majority of October.

In the past week, however, the writing bug as bit once again, inspired in part by NaNoWriMo. My initial goal for NaNoWriMo was to get a more complete draft ready and finish my Harry fic, but honestly, if I can just get through the rest of the draft by November 30th, I’ll be happy. If I can stick to that goal, I should still be in line with having a manuscript ready to start sending to agents by the New Year. If I don’t, however, it will still be okay.

If I’ve learned anything in the past month, it is that I worry myself into a depression over things that are completely beyond my control and all of these personal deadlines are just unnecessarily stressing me out for no real reason. The novel is going to get completed. Someone, somewhere, at some point in time, will want it and it will eventually get published by one means or another. I just need to calm down and regain some of my patience.

Anyway…

I had thought (or agonized over, whichever) that the beginning of the novel was going to need a complete rewrite, to the point that I thought the whole project should be scrapped. The review, however, is proving to be in much better shape that I originally thought and flows quite smoothly with the rest of what I had written.

Right now I am focusing on creating the most enticing first chapter possible; enough information so that the reader has an idea of what is going on, but leaving out enough details to keep the reading wanting to continue. It has been incredibly difficult to write in this vein because there is so much that I want to “tell” to help the reader understand why things are the way they are, but I’ve recently read in an agent’s blog that all these “telling” details are many times meaningless simply because a reader could easily forget everything I’ve “told them” at the times when it would be helpful for them to have this knowledge. Again, it all comes down to show versus tell, but really “a bit of tell interspersed with enough show to let the reader know I’m not simply dictating to them.” All in all, the review has been as fun as it is frustrating.

With the house infinitely cleaner than it was when I woke up today, I think this new burst of energy might be one I can maintain for a bit. I’m not only happier and more enthusiastic about all my projects (I joined a gym today, heaven help me!), but I am also gaining the peace that I had so sorely sought when I was 24.

 

Procrastination, part 1 Sunday, August 16, 2009

Filed under: Artwork,The Sims,Writing — kaitco @ 12:05 am
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I saw “part 1” because I know this is just one many, many future posts that will feature procrastination. It’s now been eight full days since I’ve written any part of Damen. This happens every time I finish a chapter or a major scene and this little cycle is getting a little boring.

I know if I just sit down and start writing I’ll be able to just finish the rest of the notes, but I just can’t make myself write Damen. It’s not even that I can’t bring myself to write at all. After all, I’m writing this, I just can’t make myself write Damen. I’ve even taken to creating Edition 3 of Flight just to take the edge off. I know I want and need to write especially since it’s halfway through August and I’m still working on the notes, but it’s the same level of procrastination that kept me from studying for my O-Chem exams until the very last minute that’s plaguing me right now.

I blame some of this my cycle and the fact that I normally can’t write if the house is a mess, which it is, but I’m rather alarmed at how I’ve not yet figured out how to shake this procrastination. I know everyone deals with it on one level or another, but I’m almost 25 and I still haven’t made any progress with it. The worst part about it is that it almost seems productive.

Writing a blog post feels like it’s productive, but since my main only goal for my birthday this year is to get the novel done, any time I’m not writing Damen, I’m procrastinating. That includes working OT, reading, reading books I’ve already read, editing books I’ve already written, cleaning, DDR, eating, sleeping and I’d like to say even going to church, but I’d rather not be smote before I get the book done. I’ve been feeling rather creative lately, but just not towards Damen. I want to edit Flight and focus Edition 3 on craft and perspective. I want to create my webcomic Little Green Men. I even wrote a few notes on a storyline for “LGM” and have been trying to draw more, even though drawing is not my forte regardless of the genes handed down from my father. I just keep finding new and genuine ways of procrastinating.

Hopefully tomorrow, since I’ve put teaching on hiatus, but ironically want to study and teach more than ever now, I’ll get the cleaning bug and clean the whole house and do laundry and all that jazz and turn of the sims, which is a battle in itself, and sit down to just write. It’s quite a hope and I don’t have much “hope” in it, but here’s hoping…

 

 
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