kayqy: Aaaaaaaaaah! (aaah)
Sooooo... even though the last time I tried to do a bingo challenge I got nowhere... I couldn't resist the Trope Bingo. I'm getting better about finishing things, and some of these'll surely coincide with my personal prompts, and— and it looks so fun! >.>

So here's my card:



kidfic mind games time travel au: alternate professions against all odds
au: royalty / aristocracy / feudal deathfic holidayfic curtainfic in vino veritas / drunkfic
rites of passage / coming of age snowed in FREE

SPACE
epistolary virginfic
au: crossover role reversal mind control au: alternate gender norms celebratory kiss
first time / last time au: fusion immortality / reincarnation chosen family handcuffed / bound together
kayqy: In the depths of the earth... the fires of creation (volcano)
So, even though I'm theoretically in the middle of a month-long novel-finishing marathon (Camp NaNo, I love you, I swear I'm not leaving you), I signed up for the Cotton Candy Bingo, because A: I have through the end of the year, B: WD kept tweeting about it and making it sound all exciting, 3: it can be anything, any fandom or original fic or poetry or art or baking a freaking cake, and F: the world needs more happy things.

So, here's my bingo card:

School Night out Intimate Protect from harmless threat Don't stop
Mask Game night Tickle Confidence Changed plans
Flowers Lonely / Alone WILD CARD Beach Piercing / Tattoo / etc
Worth it Home-cooked meal Love Under the surface Vulnerable
Nightmares Office / Workplace Romance Holding hands Heartache Performing


Since I am theoretically prioritizing The Novel for a while (the rest of the month and/or until it's finished), don't know when I'll actually get started on these. (Also not sure what I'll do if some of them wind up being *ahem*, because I fail at compartmentalizing my internet life, which makes the thought of posting explicit stuff for more than a few people to see feel REALLY AWKWARD. But I'll burn that bridge when I come to it. >.>;;;; )
kayqy: Teito peruses the stacks... with INTENT. (greeneyes)
Well, since I started this self-declared writing challenge, I've gotten just over 8000 words, and am halfway (?) through chapter 5. Feels like I may be falling behind, but it's hard to say when my goal is just "finish". Either way, I'm not giving up.

I am, however, temporarily reprioritizing some things. Family's church is taking eyeglasses to Colombia this weekend (or at least the kits to make them), and I'm trying to sew as many cases for them as I can before they go. So far I've sewn about 60, and we've cut the fabric for about a bajillion more. Between that, and today being Memorial Day, I've spent the day cleaning, cooking, sewing, and being with my family. Which got me thinking about how those tend to be the "housewifely/womanly" skills that get looked down upon and disparaged as not being "real work". Even though no one who ever has to do any of those would deny that they took a lot of work to do (even just being with the family, sometimes). Or skill and talent to do well. Even so, they're very rarely considered a "valid" use of one's time and energy, and those who focus on it are "wasting" themselves.

It's as if, back when the feminist movement started, they took the argument that "a woman's place is taking care of the home because that's all they're capable of," and only took the counterargument halfway. Yes, women are capable of more things, or at least other things, and no one should be limited in their choices due to gender. But instead of arguing that the ability to do all the work needed to care for a home and family was proof that they could do things outside the home, too, or something similar, they seemed to try to build themselves up by demeaning the jobs expected of them, making themselves seem more important by making such "chores" seem less important, unworthy of their attention. "I've got better things to do than clean house all day." But these things are important, no matter who does them, and necessary, and no one really needs to be ashamed of having to or choosing to do them.

If I were writing a dissertation or something, I could probably spend ten to twenty pages extrapolating how this relates to this or that breakdown of the family or society in general, but, well, "I've got better things to do."
kayqy: Aaaaaaaaaah! (aaah)
And here we go! Not going to update here every day, but I figured I should at least record the beginning:

Day 1 (yesterday):

Total WC: 1729
Plot Progress: Finished Ch. 1, barely started 2 (Vester's intro)
Greatest Hurdle: I want to say it was the eight hours I spent working/distracted by noisy teens and watching the same angsty drama movie twice, but really it was the yellow notebook that got me. This is a purple story, I can't write a purple story in a yellow notebook!
Unexpected Twist: Brain suddenly decided that Paori is not an orphan, but the illegitimate son of the high priest and the main human antagonist. Which is a better explanation for why said priest takes so much interest in him than some, but... seriously, brain?
Favorite/Random Line: "With his senses of vision and gravity once more working together, he tentatively turned his head to one side."
kayqy: Awesomeness on a stick (pocky)
GUYS I DID IT.

Wasn't expecting today to be a break, but hey, I won't complain. ^.^ Of course, the challenge clearly expects me to start nanowrimo tomorrow. But I can't wait until November, so I decided to do the next best thing: make my own challenge.

Freedom for Muses will go from May 20 to July 4. That gives me about 6 weeks, with an extra weekend thrown in; more than NaNo's 30 days, but I'm not just going for a piddling 50K. I've scaled that wall plenty of times before. No, I am going to FINISH. Only if I can honestly write "The End" by July 4 will I consider myself to have won.

Not sure if I'll keep up the updates here or not; if I do, it'll likely just be quick progress reports or really interesting teasers I want to share. Progress will likely be measured in some funky combination of WC and plot progression.

Planning to spend the rest of this week getting all my procrastination out of the way making sure everything's ready to get started Friday. Gotta make sure my laptop's still working, for one....
kayqy: Oyasumi~ (oyasumi)
Ugh, feel so weird today. Just wanna sleep. Or read. Or both, if that's possible. =.= But I can't quit so close to the end!

So. Characters. Even the MCs could use a little more fleshing out, and as for the rest of them... *sigh* So here I go. Gonna try and answer the questions for today's challenge specifically (the one about where they do and don't fit in seems especially interesting), but don't be surprised when I tangent off the deep end.

Paori: Born in a cave. No, really. Parents ran away moved to Beacon Town to start a new life as miners or something. Not sure of their names yet, but I think they died in an accident (or "accident") a few years back. Paori's an only child, and was taken in by the local temple, which he'd been considering joining anyway. He did feel he'd belong there forever, but events are going to change that, alas. He's fairly comfortable in caves, but I think by the end of the book his belonging will not be a place so much as a person and/or calling. >.> Shh, don't tell. Also, I get the feeling he's not naturally patient. So he'll probably wind up often doing things on his own rather than trying to explain what needs doing to others.... *mwahahas* Oh, and he's 20, and the three most influential people... one or both of his parents, and one or more of the priests who taught him: the head priest Paloma, and the priest that taught him to read/basic lightworks.

Vester: Born in the northern forests, very close to the mountains. 17, and his most influential people are his parents (killed just before the start of the story, very tragic and angsty) and the shaman-like person (aunt? uncle?) who taught him to whistle. Since he's travelled nearly all his life, he's most at home on the road, though the northern lake where his people live are a nice "home base" for short periods of time. Not claustrophobic, but gets antsy with a roof over his head for too long.

Sylver: Born on the coast, just outside a fishing town. (These brothers were not very convenient in coming into the world, I wonder how their parents managed. And what they were thinking.) Vester's parental info applies to him, of course, though I think he was more attached to a different relative at the lake— one who told a lot of interesting stories. His wanderlust is a little less Vester's "gotta keep moving" and more a desire to explore new places. Especially comfortable in the caves where he can squeeze into unlikely crevices that others can't reach. 8.

Flynn: Born in the eastern swamps or whatever I make that area. Really didn't fit in with the way of life there, and the way people tried to utterly ignore the powers of light and sound, even when they clashed accidentally and screwed things up, so he came to the ruined city to learn more about what happened and why, and how it can be fixed. Also a grandparent really instilled in him a passion for history (as well as passing on the ancient writing, which most people don't bother with). A handful of other people came with him, including his wife (second influential person) and their two little ones who were born there, and he's really come into his own as leader/archaeologist. Third influential person was the parent that tried to stop him from wasting his life on the dead past, and thus led him to leave in rebellion.

*sighs* I was hoping to get to Paloma, and Virue, and maybe even a couple other characters, but. Sleep. It beckons. No, it drags me by the collar. Still, I accomplished a few good things here....
kayqy: Teito peruses the stacks... with INTENT. (greeneyes)
Yesterday and today are basically sorting through what I've got and seeing what I've left out. Tying up loose ends and so on. I've basically been alternating between brainstorming stuff I haven't figured out yet and writing random scenes: some backstory folktale-ish stuff, some random prompts and scenes that just insisted on being recorded for posterity.

Some things I've been working on:

~Swearwords. I make things harder on me to begin with by not wanting to use the basic four-letter cusswords, but I also want to make sure that what they do use makes sense for their world. They're not going to use Jesus' name in vain, for instance, who's he? :P So far my favorite is "son of a goatsucker" (which also means that there is an animal that preys on the goats and antelope that are so abundant in this world, bwahaha). I also like, "Well, aren't you the Journeyman's own ____" —haven't quite figured out what to put in that blank. Boots? Socks? And "useful as a mute songbird" might be a nicely awkward epithet for Vester to accidentally use around Paori... >:D

~Tried to figure out taboos and sexual mores etc., but couldn't really get anything that meshed. Trying too hard, I think.

~Same with the family structures. I meant to have fairly tight family structures, but the emphasis I'm placing now on people being disconnected from each other seems to clash with that. But making people completely callous without any connection to each other at all seems too forced. :\

~Decided that there is a demonplague of sorts, since I really need something concrete for people to turn to the church for. So their worldly power derived muchly from being the ones in their culture to apply the correct protection from this wasting disease. Though other cultures have their own variations, too. (and there might be another use there for the crystals....)

~Also decided I need another group of people in the east coast of the continent: they've eschewed magic altogether and live in the swampy southeast, mostly, even more cut off from other people than the other cultures. I think Flynn the archaeologist might be a misfit from this people. In fact, the fact that most of my main characters have a tendency towards travelling makes them all misfits.

*bounces* nearly done~!
kayqy: The plot jackalope! (Default)
So today's challenge goes back to the day I phoned it in. Terrific. >.< Add in to the fact that I've kind of been pruning ideas that don't really fit as I go, and it means there's not much for me to go through now. Even today, when I decided that having 'demons' that go against the Lady's plan means I should also have some 'angels' that follow her, I decided almost immediately that epic glowing "Fear Not" manifestations were Not Going To Fit. I may even save any mention of 'angels' or 'harmonizers' or whatever I wind up calling them until the sequel that looks more and more inevitable.

Speaking of that sequel, it seems my brain just keeps trying harder and harder to mash this story with the allegorical epic I toyed with some time ago, Children of Legoria. (Yes, I did that on purpose, hush.) At first the mashup seemed really forced, like my brain was just saying, "oh, these both have religious themes, let's put them together!" But now it's starting to feel like they'll actually fit together. And part of me is afraid that if I combine them, I'll wind up just taking the really cool elements (like one-horned horses being the norm while hornless ones are bad luck) and leaving the rest of the characters and plot out to dry; while the other part of me is afraid if I don't combine them, I'll never feel 'ready' to write Legoria on its own. I think it'll wind up happening, especially since I got some interesting twists to my original basic allegorical plot today. It'll just take me a little while to come to terms with it.

I also worked some more on the moons (OMG THE ORBITS BREAK MY BRAIN) and the demons. Making progress, even if I'm going off the beaten path. Or at least the path marked with signs and arrows. I'll get there in the end!
kayqy: In the depths of the earth... the fires of creation (volcano)
~I believe I can fly, I believe I can touch the sky~ *cough* Sorry, where was I?

Today's challenge is about the sky, and what's in it. Which is good; this is something that I haven't thought over much yet, but also something that I want to be significant: with the importance of light, sources such as the sun, moon(s), and stars are going to be significant.

The sun is going to be pretty much the same as the sun here. Any attempts I made to differentiate it would be needlessly complicated and most likely extremely contrived, so.

However, I am going to have two moons. One will be fairly Luna-like, orbiting around the equator, while the other will be noticeably smaller and have an extremely inclined orbit, so it's going almost north-south instead of east-west. (Yes, everything will still be rising in the east and so on— the articles I read today had a lot of good reasons to do so, and I have no reason not to.) I spent a lot of time hunting down data and visual aids to help me figure out just how plausible that would be without the orbit of one screwing up the other (thank you, Phobos and Deimos). Since I don't plan on going into too much detail about it in-story, I think this'll do for now. Once I figure out how the path of Little Moon will look from the ground, especially when the planet is moving too...

Few places on this continent will have significant light pollution, so the stars are going to be highly visible. The Light River/Milky Way will probably run nw-se, and there will be several constellations that everyone recognizes. Like the Lady's Star (North Star), which the Journeyman (Little Moon) is always seen as travelling to at night, and leaving in the morning. (When it's full, that is; uncouth people make jokes about the quarters, when the Journeyman gets night and day mixed up like a person who's had too much to drink. >.> ) Magically, the light power from the stars is negligible compared to other light sources, and is only noticeable on nights when both the moons are dark.

Taking names for the other moon and various constellations.

Think about it every night and day, spread my wings and fly away~
kayqy: Aaaaaaaaaah! (aaah)
I've still been worldbuilding every day, I just haven't been posting. Mainly because I was too tired. (Seriously, I don't think I would have reached Sunday's epiphanies if I hadn't been half-loopy from lack of sleep.) But I'm in the home stretch, I'm not going to lose momentum now!

Sunday I fudged a bit, because I don't really have a need to change any of my geography as of now (though that may change once I figure out exactly how big the continent is, and how long it would take My Heroes to traverse it). So instead I struck up a conversation with the 'verse's God, and learned some important stuff about the demons and why they're trying to destroy the world etc. and what the Lady is doing about it. I KNOW WHAT THE DEMONS ARE NOW. XD *bounces* AND I'M NOT TELLING YET, IT WILL BE A SURPRISE. *evil laughter* Also, the Lady enjoys being enigmatic, but she's still sweet about it too. ^.^

Monday was slightly less epic, but also more on topic: I got a bit of brainstorming done about the continent's fledgling currency system (quartz beads! Strung in rings, braces, and necklaces... or something like that), and the extended family system that most of the towns and villages have— Beacon Town's the exception, being a boom town with many transplanted people. Also, gold is either more common than silver, or nonexistent— either way, silver's more valuable due to its rarity and use in mystical stuff.

Today was another not-really-necessary revisiting of Mood. Even the bonus exercises: I've already got a big playlist for this story that I've been listening to from the start of the challenge. So I tried having a similar conversation with Virue, my human antagonist, but I didn't get as far with it as my conversation with the Lady. She's just not as forthcoming as a god, I guess.

Okay, there's only about a week left, and I'm not sure what the days are going to cover (looking ahead feels like cheating somehow), but these are the following things I still really need to be figured out (that I know of):

~how exactly the Lady is going to use the MCs to restore the world to its intended state, and what exactly happens if they fail (not to mention how immediately— will the world literally fall apart if they don't get it done by the solstice, or something? Probably not that immediately catastrophic, but there needs to be a deadline of sorts for the MCs, even if just a personal one...)
~what are Virue's merchants planning, and how do the MCs fit in and/or interfere? And what do they do about them?

...I was sure I had more, but I can't think of any now. *pokes brain*
kayqy: The plot jackalope! (Default)
spend fifteen minutes or so sketching out some of the animals and plants your characters might encounter in your world.


.......Well. If you insist...

In all honesty, only one of those (perinseed) is my own creation. The other plants I got by googling "cool plants", and the animals I pretty much went to Zooborns and clicked all the animal names I didn't recognize. ^^;; But I did manage to draw some conclusions along with cute little animals:

1. The continent has horses but no cows. People instead domesticated various types of goat and antelope for meat, milk, and fur. Also some rabbits (in WV) and birds (chickens, ducks).

2. There may be 'regular' cats in the south, but the NF peoples instead make pets of fossas to hunt down vermin. *squees some more over these adorable cat-weasel things* I may have to give them thicker coats to make up for transplanting them from Madagascar?

3. RESURRECTION PLANT. *resists urge to make it revive others rather than just itself* >.> But woo! Something awesome to put in the desert ruins! \o/

4. Tempted as I am to put in jackalopes, I think they really wouldn't fit in the mood. *shrugs* Oh well, they're in plenty of my other worlds.

5. I may need to add more birds, but I think I'd want to base it more on what their calls sound like. Then they can be plot relevant, too!
kayqy: Teito peruses the stacks... with INTENT. (greeneyes)
Today is about making an outline of what plot I have so far, or at least figuring out what big questions I'll likely be answering in said plot.

This is a pretty good exercise for me at this point... I hope. The outline I came up with earlier starts out fairly detailed at the beginning: I have a decent idea of what the MCs do up to a certain point. But then it gets vaguer and takes a very sharp turn into .....STUFF. (No, seriously, I wrote that.) I mean, I know at some point they make their way down to the ruins, meet an archaeologist/historian, learn some big important plot points, but I'm not sure what those points are, or what they do with them after (beyond "SAVE THE WORLD DUH")—

*takes a moment for brain to go off on a tangent about Powerful Being Existing Outside Of Time who falls and repents and thus winds up struggling against itself in various times and places* o.O (I blame Diane Duane, frankly.) Uh. Right. Anyway.

So, my big problem at the moment is more or less connecting the epic strokes of the gods and demons with the actions of the little people on their little continent. What are the demons trying to accomplish, and why? Why does the Lady choose these three boys to work through? What's special about them? (And why am I having so much trouble with the plausibility of gods working through imperfect humans when I fully believe it of my own— OH HAI THERE, OBVIOUSNESS. I need to stop thinking of my God as some Deist figure that just sits back and watches without interacting! Just because it's like the polar opposite of the popular epic fantasy trope of gods literally popping out of everywhere to save the day *coughWebercough* doesn't mean it's better!) Epiphany, woo! \o/

Okay, so remember that the Lady cares about her creation individually and as a whole, and the demons are mainly against the world because they're against her. Though there may be something else strategic in there, too, we shall see.

Half an outline and a major epiphany (not to mention a shiny tangent), I think I'm good for the night!
kayqy: Aaaaaaaaaah! (aaah)
Supposed to be working on characters today, but I haven't done too much of that yet. Partly because I spent most of the day explaining "key powers" to 5th graders a few thousand times (and explaining why I don't think the world will end in 2012), partly because my brain got stuck trying to reconcile the other day's epiphany to my original snippets and ideas (which does affect my MC, so I suppose it could count?). But then I remembered that Paori's temple is this strange fringe group anyway, so I just need to change a little what they're strange about. :P But anyway.

I still want to do a bit of the character stuff, even though I'm tired. My MCs are pretty fleshed out, but I need a few more people to populate this 'verse with.

Soooo... let's meet the leader of Paori's temple!

Name: *hunts down original notes and compares to list* Paloma vel Rion (with Rion meaning something impressive, like Light— no, that should be taken by the head of the main WV church. Crystal, or Pure, maybe)
Description: middle-aged guy by now, fairly average looking, decent charisma no I am not rolling a D&D character

(3 questions, come on brain, you can do it!)

Where did Joe grow up? I think he grew up in a fairly prosperous coastal/river town.
What if he didn't like his home? I don't think he did, actually. Well-off family, but he was one of several brothers and sisters, all of which seemed more successful and more appreciated. Also, I think he may be afraid of the ocean. One of his brothers told too many bedtime tales about monsters of the deep, I guess.
How does Joe fit into your speculative element? Well, he is a priest. And the one who figured out the sound-absorbing crystals, which kind of led to him becoming the head priest. So he's pretty involved, even if his attempts to combine light and sound through ultimate purity or whatever make the rest of the church look at him askance. The rest of the world also looks at him a little funny, but they still appreciate his skills enough to buy the crystals.

guhhhhh I want to do more, but braaaaain, it is gone. =.=
kayqy: Teito peruses the stacks... with INTENT. (greeneyes)
Spent a good deal of the evening playing with figuring out my new phone, but I'm still trying to get this done, too. *stares at today's challenge until her brain starts working again*

....yeah, like that's going to work. *tries sitting down with a notebook to brainstorm instead*

Okay, that's better. Now I just need the energy to type them up....

Light: considered province of church in WV, and so glassblowers and the like tend to take up holy orders, at least in name. They make small protective amulets for houses and families, of debatable effectiveness (since they can't control noise levels around them), and larger stained glass windows in rooms that have been made as soundproof as possible. WV people tend to trust priests, NF dismisses them, EV distrusts.

Sound: NF teaches soundcraft to promising children, in a way that's a little bit parent/child and a little bit shaman/apprentice

Crystals: can be used by anyone, but are more expensive the farther you get from the mine. Still, the growing popularity means they're rapidly replacing candles and oil lamps in the homes of those who can afford it.

Demons: Demons are real, and many people perceive them as a real threat (though there are as many stories about what demons actually do to victims as there are storytellers), but they are associated more with the Southern Ruins, so people tend to think of them as a distant threat... unless, of course, they've experience with one.

God(s): It's about as varied as, well, Christianity over the centuries, in how people believe in them. I really need to pin it down a bit more. But not tonight. This is about all I can manage.
kayqy: In the depths of the earth... the fires of creation (volcano)
*sigh* Another day devoted to making sure that I'm getting the mood right— this time making sure the magic matches the mood. *randomly gets image of a spell not working because it's "not in the mood" and having to woo the magic* >.> *cough* A-anyway, I'm sure this constant revisiting is good for some people and worlds, but as I've mentioned before, Mutelight has had such a strong mood from the beginning, that nearly all of what I've come up with automatically has the mood built in. (At least, it all does in my head... )

But, well, I guess I could work on the names of the concepts a bit more, since that's still pretty fuzzy. I'm fairly sure that I don't want to use the term 'magic' at all; 'mystical' or 'spiritual' will probably be my adjectives of choice, depending on how closely connected to their God the speaker or POV character considers said magic. But for the most part, said adjectives will be unnecessary; magic will simply be described as how it is. Vester won't "whistle a spell" instead of "whistling a note/tune"; the magicness will be evident from the results of the whistling.

As for specific names for each magic type... I'm thinking a simple name for each type, with perhaps a more learned-sounding name used by scholars and those who want to puff up their intelligence. Maybe 'lightcraft' and for the creation of prisms and stained glass and such to focus the light, and ...'soundcraft'? 'songcraft'? (just plain whistling? except you don't always have to whistle) and/or 'tonal-something' for the sound. And 'crystalworks' for the crystals.

*tucks these away to ponder when she once again has brain*
kayqy: Oyasumi~ (oyasumi)
Today's challenge here.

I wasn't sure how to go about this at first: the first thing I thought of upon reading the phrase "cost of magic" was Anne McCaffrey's psychics, who measured their psy-usage by caloric expenditure; Lackey's Valdemar, with its ley-lines of magical power accessible by only a few; and the good ol' traditional "this spell will cost a year of your life" sort of magic. And none of these really fit for my world. (Also, I'm really tired of magic being treated like a car: just fill up your magical gas tank and go!)

So I whined a bit and grumped a bit, and then I sat down and worked out what my costs/trade-offs are:

Light:
~requires a source of light (usually the sun, but sometimes fire will work), and a... vessel of some sort. Glass, crystal, something to refract and possibly reflect the light a certain way.

Sound:
~requires very pure, precise tones.

I'm not sure if they also require a spiritual purity or specific intention (as opposed to the pattern of light shining through leaves accidentally turning lead into gold or something). I'm leaning towards no, but it'll depend partly on how much of this 'magic' is really an act of nature, or an act of God. Because it's really a combination of the two.

As such, the "energy cost" of this magic is roughly equivalent to that of painting a picture, or composing and singing a song. It's the cost of creation, and only intent and skill can tell whether that cost buys the desired result.

However, there are a couple of ....indirect? costs that prevent this magic from being utterly ubiquitous (whee, big words and alliteration. >.> ) One is that it's really hard to get either type of magic right. Not only is precision in either one key, but they jostle each other out of sync all the time— which is why the crystals are so important, they act like shock absorbers! (GUYS YOU HAVE JUST WITNESSED THE BIRTH OF AN EPIPHANY. XD )

Another trade-off, or turn-off, is that there is a stigma attached to one or more of them, depending where you are (westerners are suspicious of Northern whistling, and consider lightworks to be the province of the church, and so on. So that seriously cuts down on the number of casual dabblers.

*is out of brain and energy and time, but doesn't care* EPIPHANY, I SAY.
kayqy: "It was a good thing decapitation isn't fatal." (decapitation)
All right, Day 15! Halfway there! Bring it on!

Okay, so today's challenge is....

....linkspam a list of worldbuilding resources.

Seriously? õ.O

*sighs* All right, all right, I'll give them a look. But this is either going to be incredibly boring or lead to me spending the rest of the night looking at shinies instead of accomplishing anything (and I'm not sure which I'd prefer...).

~I have used Patricia Wrede's questionnaire before, and found it useful as a prompt to consider things I hadn't thought of before, though I rarely do the whole thing for any one story.

~I actually used to own The Writer's Complete Fantasy Reference, but I was not to impressed with it in the long run. A lot of the magical information was stuff I already knew from my many years as a fantasy reader, and while the cultural info was interesting, the whole book was basically geared towards a traditional high fantasy novel. Mutelight is probably the closest I've ever gotten to high fantasy except for that story I started when I was twelve, and I've never really been one for "traditional".

Okay, now looking at the stuff I haven't seen before:

~The Borderlands of Science: Where Sense Meets Nonsense by Michael Shermer sounds intriguing. I shall have to see if I run into it.
~aaaaaaaaaaaaaaand 90% of the links don't work. *headdesk* The only one that does work AND is remotely interesting is Stephen Baxter's hard sci-fi article, which is only tangentially relevant at best.

Screw this, I'm gonna go do some prompts. Hopefully there'll be a better challenge tomorrow.
kayqy: Oyasumi~ (oyasumi)
*yawns* Busy weekend. Fortunately today's challenge was pretty simple: just a matter of how the education system works in my world. Which, since I already knew that most of the people just trained to take after their parents, or sometimes another relative or acquaintance, may be the first time this challenge really has only taken 15 minutes— most of that spent on tangential information about the church, which does teach a few people to read histories and keep records.

However, I also went ahead and brainstormed with my sister (huzzah for familial sounding boards!) about what exactly was divided in the cataclysm I've been calling the Division. And I had some fairly epic breakthroughs. Whiiiiiiich I am not going to share with you just yet, muahahaha. XD

...Okay, okay, I'll give you a couple of scraps:

~In some places, the Division may also be called the Dischordance. *checks dictionary* Or Discordance. >.>

~Vester can whistle to call fire.

*mwahahahas herself to sleep*
kayqy: "It was a good thing decapitation isn't fatal." (decapitation)
Today's challenge is supposedly about plot hooks: taking the what-ifs from yesterday and using them to find ways to integrate the "speculative element" with your story. I have just a few problems with this:

1. I am a little confused between yesterday and today: to me, what-ifs are the plot hooks.

2. My speculative element is pretty integrated. I mean, I have a priest fighting demons with mystical crystals and a magically-whistling sidekick, what more do you want? Sure, it's a blurry line between magic and religion in this story so far, but still, it's already crucial.

3. I had a really great time at the Arts and Jazz Fest this afternoon, and thus have very little brain and energy for coherent thought.

So yeah, phoning it in today. At some point I will go back and delineate ways that Paori and Vester et al might try different magics to solve problems and/or make things easier, with various exciting results, but for now, I'm just going to jot down a few interesting ideas that came to me in the past 24 hours (yes, even though I can't brain with intent, my brain still keeps going):

~Me (last night to friends): How evil would it be to put key information in an ancient tome when the only MC who can read is mute?
Friends: Deliciously evil. :D

~Me (listening to random DragonForce song this afternoon): This is a cool song, too bad it's too upbeat for my mutelight playlist. Oh well, guess I'll save it for the sequel— WAIT WHAT SEQUEL?!

~Me (watching A Bug's Life tonight and remembering the stories she came up with in high school that started as Bug's Life fanfics until she discovered the concept of OCs): You know, it'd be really awesome if Flynn's ruined city happened to be one of those from the AC in Paori's world— WAIT, SERIOUSLY, BRAIN?

I swear, my brain just mashes bunnies together like a chef throwing spaghetti at the wall to see if it sticks.

....and that metaphor made a lot more sense in my head. Which probably tells you something.

*will be back to taking this seriously tomorrow* As serious as I get, anyway. :P
kayqy: The plot jackalope! (Default)
Today's challenge is all about the "speculative element", as the challenge generically puts it. ~Magic~ :D

I already know that I'm writing fantasy, and I have a few magical elements that are definitely in the story: the crystals, and whistling. Yes, whistling. Basically, magic — or holy powers or whatever— break down into light and sound. The crystals are the most obvious way for humans to harness the mystical powers of light, but not the only way. And while only certain people can pull off the whistling magic, there's a lot of superstition and religious dislike of it— temples generally go for singing and chants and orisons.

What if time!

~What if people tried to use something else to refract light mystically? Other items can be used: glass, ice, even water, fire instead of sunlight, but the results are often.... unpredictable. Natural selection has taken care of many who liked to experiment, and currently most people tend to stick with what works; which is why most of the crystals are used solely for light and heat.

~What if people tried to combine sound and light magic? ....Yeah, that's so going into the book. ^.^ It is less random than, say, water/light magic, but also incredibly complex. If you don't know exactly what you're doing... well, you better hope a god is watching over you.

~What if the Ancient Culture had a much firmer grip on these magics? OMG YES ANCIENT TOMES FTW. *cough* Yes, yes, they did. Very high level of mystical technology OMG CRYSTALPUNK. XD *coughahem* Anyway. But it follows then that the Division/Cataclysm that destroyed the culture was more than a mere earthquake: it would have had to disrupt the magic itself, or kill most of the mages/mystics.... or else it was caused by the mystics, which has led to a deep distrust of it, that's only beginning to ease up? *ooooooooooooohs*

~What can the magic actually do? ..........What are you doing here without an if? Bah, you don't count! Shoo! >.>;;;; ...........Okay, okay. Um. Well, the crystals are basically concerned with absorbing and emitting stuff... whistling can "call" things, even things that aren't normally called... I suppose it could banish stuff, too. It may have started as a way to banish (and/or control?) demons, actually. Light can also protect from demons; its effects are often very insubstantial, which many people think means symbolic or fake. Not the same thing at all.

~What are these demons, anyway? Hey, didn't you hear what I said to the other question? Come back when you've found yourself an if! >.>;;

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kayqy: The plot jackalope! (Default)
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