icarus_chained: lurid original bookcover for fantomas, cropped (Auryn)
( Jan. 6th, 2016 06:38 pm)
Been a while since I did one of these. My 15 most recent opening lines:

1) "… Ellie? You okay there sweetheart? Only you’ve been starin’ at this old mug for about ten minutes now, and it’s gettin’ kinda worrying.“ (Worth A Thousand Pictures, Fallout 4)

2) Nick got philosophical in the long watches of the night. (Made to Last, Fallout 4)

3) Something sparked faintly in Nick’s mouth, static off metal teeth maybe, and Sole pulled back hastily. (Acquired Taste, Fallout 4)

4) The kid slept in Nick’s arms the whole way back. (Sheltered, Fallout 4)

5) Nora blinked her eyes open, squinting exhaustedly in the greyish light that filtered through from somewhere. (Mornings Grey and Bright, Fallout 4)

6) The shot rang out through the nest of alleys, somehow noticeable even through the rest of the firestorm. (The Lights of their Eyes, Fallout 4)

7) Sole touches him. A lot. Nick can’t help but notice that. (Doubting, Dreaming, Fallout 4)

8) Sole growled and shoved Nick into the blind corner behind him, out of most of the immediate lines of fire. (The Ragged Edge, Fallout 4)

9) When I was nineteen, my first year in college, I went to stay with my great-aunt Yvonne. (Yves, Original Work)

10) In his life, having lost so many, Jingyan had thought that he had experienced every pain there was to know. (Watershed, Nirvana in Fire)

11) "I’m telling you, Khered, if one more arrogant, pissant, bull-in-a-china-shop, tin-plated nincompoop of a knight comes storming up my bloody stairs to ‘rescue me’, I am going to flatten this kingdom.” (Manners Saveth Man, Original Work)

12) "It does not seem fair.“ (A Good Death, Babylon 5)

13) The signpost loomed out of the dark and the drizzle as the bus crested the hill, glowing bright for a second as the headlights bounced off it. (Cainsford Fourteen Miles, Original Work)

14) The harsh slam of the workroom’s oaken door sounded like thunder behind them, though Thomas had some small difficulty hearing it over the thud of his own body as the King’s magic flung him unceremoniously across the anteroom. (Gravefrost and Wormwood, Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell)

15) The battle had broken Merlin. (Greater Love, Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell)

Apparently I have a tendency to either cold-open onto a conversation or action, or towards a sort of blunt opening-statement-for-the-story-to-elaborate-on, and occasionally a combination of both. I think the only possible exception here is 'Cainsford’, which is pure scene-and-atmosphere establishment, because it’s a moody ghost story and needs a bit of set-dressing. Most of the others fit the cold-open or opening-theme-statement mould.

Apparently I like in medias res and/or a solid 'this is the story theme’ to start off with. Nice concrete action hooks or mood statements. Heh.
icarus_chained: lurid original bookcover for fantomas, cropped (Cloud Road)
( Jan. 1st, 2016 06:28 pm)
Have some random worldbuilding notes for an original universe while I'm on the subject of black dragonfish (long story):

Lemuria Notes

Contents:

- Planet Lemuria (geography, inhabitants, language)
- Major Nations/Peoples of Lemuria
- Zealandia
- Kerguelen
- Island Union
- Kibu
- Bohol
- Jasconius
- Zaratan
- Deep Mu
- Ys
- Vaalbara
- Interplanetary Bodies (Galactic Ruling/Judiciary Bodies)
- Actual Story Idea


Lemuria )
icarus_chained: lurid original bookcover for fantomas, cropped (Heartstruck)
( Jul. 16th, 2015 06:14 pm)
I am beginning to realise how much I really, really, really love the darker kinds of passion in fic. (Shush, yes, I know I should probably have figured that out well before now). Looking back over my fic, it's kind of obvious that I really do like the more savage side of love.

These are just about 1700 words of rough notes, mostly outlining, research and associations, that I did in preparation for the Walpurgis Nacht story. Normally I wouldn't post these, but the stuff about the Harz and the Piper is really kind of interesting, so I thought I'd throw them up as well. The actual story shifted a bit from this outline as I was fighting with it (seriously, there were five separate drafts and two months of fighting involved), but since they're only rough notes I figured I'd leave them.

icarus_chained: lurid original bookcover for fantomas, cropped (Mischief)
( Jun. 12th, 2015 11:04 pm)
Encounters Anthology, edited by Jessica Augustsson on amazon.com. It's just gone live, and two of my stories are in there. 'The Long Dark' and 'Ghostwyrm', to be specific. Hee! Some really good stories from other writers as well. I'm reading through it myself now.
icarus_chained: lurid original bookcover for fantomas, cropped (Holmes ??!)
( Apr. 24th, 2015 09:52 pm)
Something I saw on tumblr. Might actually be useful to me as a reminder since I have a strange tendency to arrange words oddly sometimes when I'm writing in a hurry.

Place the word 'only' anywhere on the sentence:
"She told him that she loved him."

- Only she told him that she loved him. (She was the only one of six women that did)
- She only told him that she loved him. (Like what else was she gonna tell 'im?)
- She told only him that she loved him. (No-one else. They eloped the next day)
- She told him only that she loved him. (She considered it the only pertinent fact)
- She told him that only she loved him. (So you're not getting any better offers, boyo)
- She told him that she only loved him. (Not that she was willing to die for him, WTF?)
- She told him that she loved only him. (No other man for her. Honestly, your honour)
- She told him that she loved him only. (... to stab him through the heart?)
This site is the best thing ever: Fantasy Name Generators.

It has sections for people names, real people names, place names, ship names, bandit group names, and loads more. And, yes, some of them are more dodgy than others, the city names are a bit questionable, but a lot of them are absolutely hilarious. I'm going to name all my spaceships The Prototype Ambassador or The Blasphemous Enterprise or The Minor Disappointment.

But the best, the absolute best, is the random tavern name generator (look in place names). I would honestly write a whole story just so a bunch of characters can go on a pub crawl through a fantasy city and drink their way through some of these places.

"We'll start out at The False Anemone, because you don't want the tongue twister later on in the proceedings. Then I think we'll head up Long Street and stop off in The Gruesome Rhododendron and The Ethereal Cashew Inn, making sure to avoid The Tacky Helmet Bar because the Watch stop off there and they're usually either rowdy or morose. Then maybe we'll nip down Cobbler's Lane and get a bite to eat in The Lethal Salad Bar. If we can find the place around the back of the cathedral, we'll maybe stop at The Wandering Belltower, before heading down towards the port district and The Magenta Orc or The Known Octopus Bar for some more interesting nightlife. After that, if we're all still upright, we'll have a choice of heading up towards the alchemical college area and the fabulous Impolite Tavern and The Limping Librarian, or those of us interested can head towards The Curious Bachelor, The Warm Shipmate Tavern or The Romantic Leg for perhaps a little company in the small hours. For those more daring or more careless souls, of course, there's always The Accidental Child Inn. The remainder of the group, however few that may be, can finish out the evening in The Late Gentleman Tavern or The Sleepy City Bar, and The Secret Nightingale Inn always welcomes late guests who wish to sleep off the effects of a night."

I swear, they're all fabulous. I've just spent hours randomly generating ten names at a time. It's thoroughly addictive -_-;
Well, that went well. Apparently, throw enough genres in a blender and my brain will do some strange places -_-; Um. Yes. Heh. So, the Original Character Meme ended up producing sketched ideas for the following:

- A crime-solving embittered skaldic lawspeaker with a dark past, in a Viking Crime Fiction story.

- A librarian-scholar with an interest in prophecies and apocrypha running afoul of a divination cult in 1870s Britain, in a Steampunk Bibliomancy story.

- An amnesiac ship's AI who believes it was originally one or several consciousnesses stripped by an alien monolith and strewn throughout the cosmos, in a Stitchpunk Space Odyssey story.

- A horrified survivor of a cybernetic instrumentality event, in a Sci-Fi Cybertech Horror story (came kind of close to Galactic Duality, so possibly some cheating there).

- An alternate Orpheus lost aboard the Asphodel Space Station searching for a guide deeper into the Hades space sector, in a Noir Space Opera Mythology story (again, kind of more fanfic than original, whoops).

And finally:

- A pair of supernatural bakers in 1877 Constantinople (a domovoi and a djinn) who get caught in the middle of supernatural murders and spy drama as the Russo-Turkish war builds to a close around them, in an Urban Fantasy Bakery Spy Drama. Because why not?
I need a kick in the pants, but I've been mostly sorting out RL stuff. Ugh. Something to get me thinking in a writerly direction again?

Give me a genre of fiction, and I will invent a character from whole cloth to feature in a story in that genre.

Feel free to be anything from broad strokes ('horror', 'crime') to somewhat specific ('historical urban fantasy') to super specific ('magitech clockpunk spy drama with a romantic subplot'). Lets see if I can do this without cheating and using characters I made earlier ;)
icarus_chained: lurid original bookcover for fantomas, cropped (Mushishi)
( Mar. 14th, 2014 04:26 pm)
One of my prompts from today's [livejournal.com profile] comment_fic theme, because my brain coughed out something I want to keep. *shrugs sheepishly* I'm in the mood for alliteration, apparently?

"In the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is a prophet and a pariah, a perceiver of foreign phenomena, a purveyor of frailest phantasy."
icarus_chained: lurid original bookcover for fantomas, cropped (Fantomas)
( Feb. 18th, 2014 12:25 am)
Death plays dice with a knucklebone
And the Devil cheats at cards
Ain't nobody sayin'
What game God's playin'
But it's goin' the whole nine yards
I was sort of absent and unconscious yesterday, due to a crushing migraine. They're getting more regular again, but I suspect that's partly due to increased stress lately (my mother is deteriorating a bit the last couple of months). I think I've forgotten to reply to some people: I'll try and find them later, yes?

However. Just for a random sideline into things my migraine-fried brain decided to think about:

- I tend to get a shower when I've a migraine, because I like to crouch and press my head into the tiled corner of the stall so there's cool pressure around my head while the water keeps the rest of me warm. I usually lean all my weight on my head, but when it gets too much I bring my knees up against the wall too. For some reason, this made me wonder if this was how they originally came up with the idea of flying buttresses in gothic architecture? Because you can really feel the different in weight when you do that.

- Completely random, but you know in daemon AUs? The ones based on the His Dark Materials trilogy? I kind of want to see a fic where someone has a hippopotamus for a daemon. You know: "Yes, I'm a big, stupid-looking herbivore, but honey, when I walk in a room there are apex predators who get the hell out of my way". Like that? I'm not sure who'd have that kind of daemon, though. The only person I can think of off the top of my head is maybe Bruce Banner? I'd also like to see a female-female human-daemon pair where the daemon is a hyena, signifying a leader and an apex hunter (hyenas have something like a 70-80% success rate when hunting, compared to things like 30-40% for wolves and lions). Again, not sure who'd have that, but Wonder Woman/Diana might be a candidate?

I also had a kind of fever-dream type thing where something started out as a Downey!verse Holmes daemon AU and rapidly became some weird, fae, avian-shapeshifter style story. It was ... very weird, and I think I don't tend to think in straight lines when I'm in pain -_-;

*shakes head* Anyway. This post was brought to you by random migraine imaginings. We now return you to your regularly scheduled programming.
There are moments when I realise that the continuum between fanfic, AU and original story can be very, very short when it comes to my writing. It makes me wonder somewhat about my writing impulses.

There are several original worlds/storylines that I basically run as comfort stories in my head. I mean, when I'm walking or thinking or somewhere without access to external stories, or when I'm lying abed trying to sleep and kind of failing at it, or just when I want to ramble around in some world that isn't this one, I tend to grab around among the stories in my head until I find one that feels good right now, and let it run awhile.

I'm mentioning this now because I was running one earlier, and tracing it back through earlier iterations out of curiosity's sake, and abruptly remembered that that story had initially started out as a fandom AU. It'd been more or less morphed beyond all recognition by the present iteration, but it had actually started as a mental fanfic.

And there are a couple of those, now that I'm remembering them. I tend to write AUs at the drop of a hat, and to imagine AUs for half the bloody canons I've ever seen/read, and some of the ones I don't end up actually writing as fanfic have a tendency to shift on me. Just as an illustration, a couple of the ones I actually ended up writing fragments of in their orig-fic forms:

icarus_chained: lurid original bookcover for fantomas, cropped (Aurin)
( Jan. 16th, 2014 04:43 pm)
Since it's apparently going around (anyone else think that memes sound like flus when you say it like that?).

But! Anyway. The "Ask Me About My Writing" meme. Ask me any questions you like about my writing, whether in general or about a specific story, whether fanfic or original.
icarus_chained: lurid original bookcover for fantomas, cropped (Fantomas)
( Dec. 6th, 2013 01:39 am)


Gods, I need to sleep for a week. Never mind me, folks. It's been that kind of ... month? Call it a season, to be safe. *smiles crookedly* Yech. My apologies.
icarus_chained: lurid original bookcover for fantomas, cropped (Swordswoman)
( Oct. 14th, 2013 05:35 pm)
My copy of Thoroughly Modern Monsters arrived this morning. As in, the first book in which I have successfully had a story published. *smiles crookedly* My, ah, my parents were pretty proud. It's a nice thing to be able to show them, a concrete, physical thing you can hand someone and say "I was part of that". Heh. Um. It made Dad cry, because Granddad and reading and ... and he just missed it, but ... *waves hand* It's a thing I wrote, in a real book that was really published. *grins a little* It's kind of awesome.

I've been browsing the other stories on and off in between stuff today, and there are some fabulous things in there. Actually, my whole family has been browsing it one and off. My sister already has a favourite, and it's not the one I wrote. *grins* Traitor that she is. Heh.

It's worth picking up, if you like horror/fantasy/urban fantasy/mythology or any of those things. And I'm not just saying that because I helped write it. Honest. *smiles*
Um. Probably this is TMI and not an instruction anyone sensible should need, but ... don't accidentally drink mold? It's, ah, unpleasant. And bad for you. (I had a bottle of juice, and I thought it tasted a little funny, but it was only after a couple of sips that I thought to actually check the bottom of the bottle).

And question? If, after a very bad evening of throwing up and being hyper and mildly feverish, someone had written a short kinkmeme fill for a movie she hasn't even watched yet, should she own up to it? I mean, I meant to see the movie, but I missed it in the cinemas, so I've mostly been reading recaps and fanfic and bits of the novelisation that people have posted. It's just that the prompt was for an AU, which covers a lot of sins, and I like playing with the anthropomorphic manifestations of principles in a Lovecraftian universe, so I wrote something and posted it anonymously at 2:30 am while trying to pull my guts back in, and now I don't know what to do. I don't like having written a thing without actually having seen the source. But I sort of do like the story, though I don't know if people who've actually seen the movie would.

And, ah. It's possible that I'm still slightly loopy and weird after the night I've had -_-; But. Ought one own up to such things, or simply leave them anonymous?
Saw it floating around, thought why not. For the record? AIs kick all the ass. *nods sagely*

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