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Time for a new weekly writer’s roundup of my works-in-progress and those ready to read!

I’m still writing about a 1989 that never was with Vivian’s Last Cigarette! It’s reached nineteen and a half thousand words as of this morning, with my efforts adding about five and a half thousand of those since last week. Things are on track, and I’m excited that this story will become my first full-fledged novella in word-count later today!

Sadly, my pantsing hijinks between plotted story milestones resulted in the accidental and unfortunate decapitation of Warwick Davis last night. Sorry dude. :-( But he’ll be fine with a little Scotch Tape, I’m sure! ;-) And my free-forming also sparked a pretty funny exchange between my main characters involving the partial female nudity found the 1st edition AD&D Monster Manual.

Humor aside, I am really enjoying writing this piece! There is certainly a nostalgia factor for me given that I’m an 80s kid. However, the problems that my teenaged protagonists are grappling with are (metaphorically or actually) often the same ones I contested with at almost the same point in my life. Add to that the fact that many of the fantasy concepts I’m bringing to life in Vivian’s Last Cigarette I actually first explored at that same time as well… And it feels like I’m co-authoring this with my teenaged self.

Fortunately, he’s a good kid. I think he’s got a lot of potential. ;-) And I like working with him. A lot. :-)

The story is also growing a very unique feel as it goes along. There is very little modern or urban fantasy in 1980s settings… And I suspect that even then, my coming-of-age love story between orc teens won’t find easy comparison to other works out there.

Many of my prior snippets have focused on Viv, but this week I’m going to shine a light on Gronk… the other main character in this tale. Gronk can be best summarized as a smart, nerdy optimist. His hopeful, even naïve, attitude is a big contrast to Viv’s personality from the start. But as the story progresses, we see that even though Gronk is still adjusting to being big and scary looking while socially unsure, he has an inner strength of personality. And it’s this trait that could change everything for both himself and Viv.

Gronk is also really into fantasy, science fiction and Dungeons and Dragons. He was this way long before he became a changeling and fantasy-like being himself. This background evolves into his very “meta” viewpoint on the transforming world around him. The concept of a modern world gaining the attributes of a fantastic one… all the while retaining our prior media, literature and pop-culture rife with fantasy conventions… Is pretty key to this story and setting. And I’ve made Gronk my central speaker to that end in Vivian’s Last Cigarette.

He’s also a funny guy, both intentionally and unintentionally. He likes to make Viv smile, and she needs it. The story needs his wit and joviality, and his ability to draw the same out of Viv. It needs it because without humor and contrast, the darker subjects of the tale would absolutely drag it down.

All of the above has allowed me to write some really fun stuff! Particularly as yours truly was also a geeky D&D playing teen in the 80s… and therefore more than qualified to work it in. ;-)

(Warning: NSFW language and first draft snippets ahead!)

From Chapter Five…



Alright, time for me to stop blogging and get back to writing some more fiction! Take care!