November 23rd, 2009


Epic Update: "Warning Sine" and "Choralia"

There are currently two poems being microfunded, details to follow. In other poetry news, a recent poll revealed that folks are not interested in seeing a list of who's promoting the fishbowls, but are potentially interested in seeing occasional fiction amongst the poems during poetry fishbowls.

"The Transformations of Terror" is a science fiction horror poem about sentient starships who are afraid of hyperspace monsters.
Fully funded!
The next poem in this storyline, "What the Starships Do Not Know," is now available for $15 if folks would like to read it. We're also discussing whether some minor tense changes would make "The Transformations of Terror" read better, so look through the whole thing and leave a comment in that thread if you wish.

"Warning Sine" is a science fiction poem about the difficulty of communicating across deep time.
50 lines, Buy It Now = $20
Amount donated = $3
Amount remaining to fund fully = $17
Amount needed to fund next verse = $1.50

"Choralia" is a science fiction poem about aliens who speak orchestrally.
78 lines, Buy It Now = $39
Amount donated = $25
Amount remaining to fund fully = $14
Amount needed to fund next verse = $.50

These microfunded poems are being posted one verse at a time, as donations come in to cover them. My usual rate for microfunded poems is $.50 per line, so $5 will reveal 10 new lines, and so forth. There is a permanent donation button on my profile page, or you can contact me for other arrangements.

Torn World Update

I've been doing a lot with Torn World lately. Here's a summary...

The Language
I worked up a large set of Torn Tongue vocabulary words, starting with Ogden's Basic English list of 850 words. I threw out some that didn't seem relevant, and added some others that weren't on the original list. Some other folks on the language development team chipped in too, particularly padparadscha. Once these are approved, we'll have a very good core vocabulary.

Next up will be working on lists of words that are unique to Torn Tongue, don't translate exactly into English, and/or are culturally significant. I'm hoping that we can divide these lists across several volunteers so people are working on different topics at the same time.

Fala is the first of my Torn World characters that I started working with in any detail, a Northerner. She is a ranger who most often works as a wilderness guide, also skilled at hunting and trapping. Fala is cheerful and determined and competent, with little patience for fools.

So far I have:

* Turned in a rough draft of Fala's character sheet and story arc to ellenmillion. We are currently working on refinements of this as more Torn World details come clear. I need to make sure that what happens to Fala weaves in fluently with certain events already established (but not all pinned down by dates) in the TW timeline.

* Turned in a rough draft of Fala's "satellite" characters (friends and family, etc.) to ellenmillion. This has already spun off another character for my own development, and some very useful connections to other people's characters. Torn World explicitly encourages contributors to weave their characters together, so we are having all kinds of fun with this.

* Turned in a rough draft of "Fala the Leader." This is a short story about Fala as a little girl, showing the point when people first started really noticing her strengths. It was written on request from Ellen to justify some things I'd been saying about Fala's wilderness skills as an adult. I'm glad for that; it has given me a lot of insights into her personality and character arc. I did a lot of research to get the details right, and still muffed up some things that I now need to go back and revise. Torn World is a very different setting. However, I had fun and also thought of some things we should probably make into Wiki entries to help other writers. And finally, I noticed in retrospect that I accidently wrote a piece of "gentle fiction" (no sex, vulgar language, or violence) which wasn't a genre I was sure I could do.

Marai is another character who dates back a while, a Northerner. She is a domestic, who works in the infant-house raising children. Although I've done a lot of the work developing this character, she is not intended as one of my personal characters but rather one to be shared; she'll probably wind up with NPC status. So far I have submitted a character sheet, and this one is actually up on the Torn World forum site, currently under discussion with the canon board.

I posted Marai because we're starting to develop characters for approval now, and it's hard to connect them because there are so few to start with. So it seemed useful to create some "linchpin" characters who would have connections to many other people.

Rai is one of my newer Torn World characters, a Southerner. He is a luxury merchant, near enough to blind as makes no difference. He is capable of being an adorable charmer or a complete asshole.

So far, I have started a character sheet for Rai and discovered some connections with other characters.

One of the first things I discovered about Rai is that, in certain ways, he is stubborner than I am. 0_o

He is not, however, a match for the other characters who already hang out in the back of my mind. He's still sulking over that.