Time for a new weekly writer’s roundup of my works-in-progress and those ready to read!
The idea I started for the monthly writing challenge on my favorite Reddit group continues to grow, approaching six thousand good words as of today! That is far beyond the two thousand word limit of the challenge, but as the story starts in media res and has a number of cliffhanger peaks and valleys, I’ll be submitting the first nineteen-hundred-ish words as my official contest entry. I think this will work as the piece has a fast-paced, serial kind of feel… And it is my intent to include a link to the full story for those who want to read on past the first six pages. Therefore I’m trying to pound this one out with all my writer superpowers and have it ready for the the start of the contest on May 29th!
As I said last week, the best way I can describe the feel of the piece is to have you imagine what it would be like if Stan Lee tried to write a Harry Turtledove story with the help of Joss Whedon. As I wrote a later section last night, I also realized how the works of Frank Miller and Alan Moore have had an influential touch on me as well.
I’ve always wanted to write some fiction touching on my love of comic-books and super heroics, and combining this with my love of history has been a blast! I think, however, that what I like the most about writing this thing that I’m calling Allied Powers, are the characters. In it I’ve plucked historical personalities from divergent eras, tweaked them, mashed them together, and yet after all of that abuse their interactions flow and feel intuitive within the setting.
Another point of pride related to that, and a place where I can see some personal improvement as a writer, is how I’ve been crafting the dialog. This story has a lot of characters… I literally have a whole squad of people running around. And they will also reference each other freely by military rank, given name and (for a few) nicknames or other nom de guerre. I was really concerned that it would be too confusing for the reader!
So in writing this piece I was careful from the start to craft each character’s dialog to sound distinctive. I think that tactic has worked. The way the characters speak tag them clearly on its own after introductions; the alternative names pulled in as the story rolls forward seem to be adding detail and character as I had hoped instead of stacking confusion. For example: Whenever I write Jane’s dialog, I aim to make her sound like a homespun, folksy cowgirl. None of the others talk like her, so whether they or the narration call her by a given name or surname, or by her rank or nickname… It’s clear at a glance who is talking as soon as she opens her mouth!
For these reasons and many others I’m looking forward to sharing this latest work! I can see that I’m building up a backlog of things that I need to tidy and release on Aethereal Engines as well… As soon as I wrap-up Allied Powers I will do some quick polish editing to my short story Adraxis Alas Asmon and post it!
Alright, time for me to stop blogging and get back to writing some fiction! Take care!