As I believe I mentioned in last week’s blog entry, I’m looking at expanding this short piece into a more thorough story. There are a number of reasons for this, but the chief one is that I have an idea I want to try with it, and I think that the little bit I have in those 700 or so words has enough potential that I can buff it into something approaching readability.
A lot of the inspiration behind why that piece is getting the focus for at least the remainder of January boils down to three main reasons:
1. I’ve been in a very science fiction mood lately. Anyone who follows my twitter will know that I’ve been busily working my way through re-watching the entire Star Trek franchise, mostly thanks to the wonders of Netflix streaming. So far I’ve gotten through the entirety of The Original Series, the entirety of The Animated Series, the first six movies, six and a half seasons of The Next Generation and one and a half seasons of Deep Space Nine. I’m trying to do it in the order the shows aired or the movies premiered. I’m somewhere in early 1994 on this re-watch and the specter of the Generations movie and Voyager are on the horizon. I guess that I’m looking at something that has a more downbeat vibe to it than Trek has in my own fiction, so some of my inspiration is writing this as a reaction to the “isn’t humanity wonderful?” attitude those shows have.
2. I happened to look back at critiquecircle.com and see that the feedback I have for the piece is generally pretty positive with only a couple of slight grammatical tweaks that I definitely need to make. Of course, some of that is due to the brevity of the piece. The fact that it’s a year old (if not more) now also strikes me as a good time to revisit the piece. I feel like i’m a better writer now than I was a year ago. I also have a more concrete handle on the nature of the conflict and where the characters are coming from. I’m also debating combining the idea with another, currently unrelated excerpt that I’ve shown to the Richmond WriMos group at one of our critique meetings. Not sure if that will happen or not, but I feel like “A politically-motivated war is thrown into chaos when aliens invade the planet it takes place on” is a promising logline that results from that cross-pollination.
3. As I’ve mentioned in the past, I really love world-building and a science fiction setting, even a relatively “soft” science fiction setting like this one (which I see as kind of a military space opera style) allows for more opportunities for that than the superhero/murder story I mentioned in last weeks blog. I suppose that the fantasy tale that I started for 2013’s NaNoWriMo also has that potential, but I’ve been reading it back, and it’s become so repetitive to me that i nee to set it aside for a good long time and clear it from my mind. I have so many priests and temples and knightly orders in that story vying for supremacy tat i need to really sit and figure out the geopolitics of the world and I’m not sure I have the patience to do that. Especially as the main idea of that was to use the low level fantasy world as more of a framing device for the characters invading the afterlife and divine realms, and I still haven’t gotten them there after 50,000 words. My historical dynasty series idea is still underdeveloped as I’ve only just started to appreciate the sheer amount of research that I need to undertake for it.
The other advantage of the initial piece being short is that I can attempt to write out the over reliance on “to be” verbs and passive voice construction relatively quickly and still restore it to a similar length.
What are any of my readers/followers working on?