Step 2: …

23 02 2010

I haven’t blogged lately ’cause I’ve had nothing to blog. I had some major writing accomplishments, gave myself a high five and a pat on the back (an operation requiring three arms and five elbows) and then indulged in media and games to celebrate my newfound lack of guilt and anxiety at having hit a milestone instead of letting a milestone hang over my head like the Sword of Damocles in some sort of ridiculous mixed-metaphor, run-on-sentence arrangement.

Said milestones were:

1. Getting fs03 done. That ended up being a much longer and more involved chapter than I’d realized, involving way more of Gilbert and Jesse than I’d anticipated. To date it’s one of the longest chapters in the series.

2. …

3. Completely outlining fs05, which involves the Big ‘Ol Climactic Showdown between Various Big Bads and Our Heroes. Finding a combination of circumstances that’d let our team wipe the floor with not one, not two, but THREE major enemies all at the same time was hell. It actually kept me up for hours one night, unable to sleep. That and the gastric cramps, I mean.

Notice #2 is blank. That’s because right now, I have nothing for fs04, and that’s starting to turn into one of those Milestones of Damocles type deals. My original plan for it is not going to pan out, because, well…

…let me run it down for y’all. I’m pretty sure I’m dumping this entire plot, so it’s not exactly a spoiler, unless you count spoilers for quantum parallel universes where I actually wrote it to count.

The plan for fs04 was that our team shows up… and uh-oh, there’s this huge jagged crack in the supposedly uncrackable Forsaken Dome over Vancouver! (Neat visual! Except it kinda makes no sense, even to the author.) Inside is a completely ruined city and a bunch of broken Killbots. (The team accidentally wakes up the Killbots before leaving without realizing.) In the woods, they find Ersatz Superman, living like a hermit after (and I had NO idea how to explain this without a massive, massive boring exposition) he and Ersatz Lex Luthor were yanked into Vancouver, continued their rivalry, but eventually put it aside so Lex could use his SCIENCE! for the survival of the humans trapped in the dome.

Unfortunately, decades later, one of Lex’s doomsday plans from before he changed his tune kicks in upon his death, and the city is destroyed by Killbots. Superman eventually punches his way out of the dome and promptly retires, sick of the whole hero thing after failing so completely. Of course, then the reactivated Killbots show up, and he has to.. uh… somehow close the dome with himself inside to save the day…?

…yyyyeah. “Half-baked” springs to mind. I’m jettisoning the whole thing — I may use the genre idea, since anachronauts is all about genre mashups, but not this specific plot. It’s just got too many holes, weakens the Forsaken Dome concept too much, and doesn’t involve our heroes doing any-damn-thing except wandering along, listening to a story, then leaving.

So, that’s my next job. Figure out what the hell to write for story #2. I’ll probably take one of the world factions from my design doc and just smoosh it up into Vancouver or something. We’ll see. …great, now my crisp, natural high from getting some good writing work done is gone because I’ve got a big ‘ol writing obstacle in front of me.

EDIT: Appended Twitterisms.

  • 08:45 Nothing says “FU” quite like your designated disabled parking space being taken because the designation sign fell into a snowbank. Thanks! #
  • 09:20 Parking office is Unhappy and told me I’ll likely need to move my car. The day is off to a rocking start! WHOO! #
  • 12:38 They’re doing a Last Dragon remake. I’d normally go “There is no justification for replacing awesome 80s cheese” but Sam Jackson is ShoNuff. #
  • 13:22 #PAX 2009 East folks! I’m a disabled gamer. What should I know about accomodations for the disabled at PAX? I gotta get prepped. #
  • 15:52 Got my disability accoms lined up for #PAX East! Khoo is the man and PA as always delivers for the gamers. #
  • 18:14 Banal Twit(tm): Seriously considering nap. Long day. But my sleep schedule’s already screwball AND I’m digesting dinner, so. Dunno. #
  • 18:15 Also, new anachronauts story development blog post up. Basically me chucking fs04 out the window and headscratching. bit.ly/cDYr4g #
  • 18:46 …you have GOT to be kidding me. RT: @MontgomeryCoMD: WINTER STORM WATCH for MC until Thurs. Significant winter storm exp with 5+” SN poss. #
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13 responses

23 02 2010
jengagne

The story you describe is interesting, but you’re right, it doesn’t belong here. There’s NO role there for the Anachronauts team and the interesting action / character development for Lex and Supes all happened 200 years ago. Well, 150 years ago, approx. So… yeah.
Not that I have any new ideas to offer up. And I’m too lazy to go look up that blog post with all the diff. possible factions innit.
Try not to go crazy as your brain ferrets out new possibilities. Of course, easier said than done. I think your muse is much more insistent than mine!

23 02 2010
lirazel

So, we’ve had The Devil, Zombies, and nanites — and of other tropes, pod people is kind of close to nanites.
I note that all of these potential disasters look like people. Is there room for a horta or two?
Also, I understand not using Superman, but is there room for Giant Fighting Robots in Snow? Both Giant Fighting Robots and Snow mean Love, after all.

23 02 2010
jengagne

Voltron? Giant robots? Could be fun. OTOH, the trick is that it has to be something that’s still there and needs to get dealt with after 200 years. Hmmmmm.
2f, check the list here? http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/Villains

23 02 2010
Stefan "Twoflower" Gagne

Lira: Well, I have some giant robots in mind for Australia. But I was also concerned that after Seattle, ANOTHER high-tech based concept would be redundant.
Jen: Thanks. I could use some Inspirational Idea Lists.

24 02 2010
Anonymous

Well, if you do want use a superhero setting, one of the main points of those is that, in their own setting, heroes end up triumphing despite any odds. So a few different things come to mind about how a city from a superhero universe would turn out in this situation:
1) The heroes managed to come up with a way to get back to their original universe
2) The heroes (or villains) managed to come up with some way to break or get out of the dome under their own power
3) Either of the above, but it went horribly wrong due to this world working by different rules.
-NeoVid

24 02 2010
lirazel

There’s the antique Giant Fighting Robots with Swords approach, ala Escaflowne.
But I also think that coming up against another culture of magic-users, albeit one that uses magic in a very different way might be nice. Now that Gilbert thinks that all magic is mathematics, why not throw him for a loop? Just a thought…

24 02 2010
Anonymous

Sure, but what does that leave our team to do, storywise? Especially if the city was domed 200 years ago?
2f, looking forward to whatever you cook up!

24 02 2010
maramala

Easy. The main characters find themselves in that world’s villain roles.

24 02 2010
ranneko

What about a group that were sealed not only due to power (they clearly need enough to be able to defend themselves against the fey) but primarily due to a dangerous but infective ideology?

24 02 2010
Stefan "Twoflower" Gagne

We’re KINDA hitting that in Anchorage. Where not which dead eternal lie, and in stranger aeons death may die.

24 02 2010
Stefan "Twoflower" Gagne

What, like communism or objectivism?

24 02 2010
ranneko

Not really sure, but it has to be threatening to the old queens which would add other ideologies to the list.

26 02 2010
Anonymous

There’s the problem… I would like to see a superhero bit, but having their city moved to another dimension and trapped in a magical dome is the sort of thing superheroes deal with every week. It’s not easy to think of a way they could have not solved the problem already.
-NeoVid

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