Status Report

After heroically keeping up with my plan to post weekly for half a year, my fledgling habit faltered after I came back from vacation. I could go into a rant on how I’ve been busier than usual with my day-job, but that was only true in August. No excuse now! I’m just too lazy for it. Not just the creation of content, which is hard enough because the journalistic style doesn’t work for me; but also making myself believe that I actually have something to say that’s worth my time to write it and anyone else’s to read it.

I have a two-weeks-old draft for the review of To the Moon, a fabulous little game I played in August, and much older plans to make a post about Rocket League; I have read several books since I’ve written about Rocannon’s World, and seen the screen-adaptation of The City and The City, as well as a couple of anime series, but I can’t make myself write about any of this. I also feel indebted by my own promises to finish the series of posts about the ME3MP Challenges and Halls of Fame. Like every other time I hit the blogger’s block, I also fantasize about writing about writing. But there are so many writing-advice blogs and podcasts and whole books out there that any such effort feels utterly pointless.

What I can do, is talk about what I’ve been up to, writing-wise, in the last couple months. It actually strikes me as odd that I blog about this so rarely. I could write a sort of making-of post for each story I publish, and document the silly struggles and small victories involved in each such undertaking. This might be interesting for posterity, in that funny, self-indulgent way of one’s teenage diary, but also as a form of mild self-critique and deconstruction of the process.

Anyway—it’s been a bit over four months since I finished the second draft of TTSS (Thinker Traitor Soldier Spectre), my Mass Effect novel about how Saren and Nihlus first met (I mentioned, somewhat cryptically, finishing the first draft here). It’s been read by three awesome beta-readers shortly after, and I got notes from them by the end of May, but that’s when the day-job crunch started, so I couldn’t get back to this till recently. I wanted to ‘let it lie’ for a while anyway, so I could read it with ‘fresh eyes’ after learning each of its 90k words by heart. Risking to sound as immodest as I am, the months of ‘forgetting’ it didn’t render me capable of noticing any flaws I hadn’t been aware of before. It’s a neat piece of work, and now that I incorporated the beta-feedback in it, it’s the nearest to goddamn perfect of all the stuff I’ve ever written. Although I’m mostly done fiddling with it, I’m giving myself a few more weeks before calling it finished because changes beget errors and I want to check everything I touched once more. But! The end is nigh! The tentative plan is to start posting comes October.

I have big plans for posting this, although I know full well how tiny my audience is. I hope to find new readers by spreading my wings to other fiction self-publishing sites that also host fanfiction: Wattpad, Inkitt and Leanpub. That’s next to AO3, FFN and this site. Phew! It’s a lot even to enumerate, let alone update weekly. I’m not sure I’ll have enough time and enough spoons to do it. I’m also considering the idea of posting the complete work on this site, for those who might want to read it at once. But nothing is set in stone yet.

In the meantime, I’ve started a few new works, and even finished one, but I’m ‘letting it lie’ before I give it a major revision. Another one—a steamy one!—has been in progress for a long time now, and about half way done. A third, that I started in long-hand last year, I’ve recently typed in so that I might perhaps continue it. And as always, there’s Ghost. Predictably, I stalled with that as soon as I ran into trouble—but this is a subject for an entire post of its own.

I am also preparing to take on a more serious project for this year’s NaNoWriMo. More of the same—Mass Effect fanfiction about Saren & Nihlus. I dare not say new, because I’ve been nurturing the idea(s) for it since 2013. They matured into something usable only recently, thanks to the collaboration with my dear friend, Gladius, who has a talent for making up complex plots with far-reaching roots and consequences. Perhaps Gladius will even illustrate parts of this story! We shall see. I’m excited about it either way. It’s been a long time since I tried my hand at the long form.

Have I mentioned that the fat stack of printed paper on the image is TTSS? Oh, yes. I may be too lazy for blogging, but I have been busy writing.

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