1. Iain Aschendale
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    Iain Aschendale Contributed Member Contributor

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    Semester Break Target

    Discussion in 'Progress Journals' started by Iain Aschendale, Jul 20, 2016.

    Right. I've got one more work day tomorrow, and it's a long one, but starting Friday I've got about six weeks off. One of those weeks is vacation with Mrs. A., but I've got a WIP, so it's time to get serious.

    Semi Military SF
    Story: Aliens vs. Bodysnatchers (working title)

    Plot sketch: People are being possessed by...something. That something is a form of alien that can take over control of their bodies. The bodysnatchers (henceforth Occupants, because that's what they're really called) are dumb, clumsy, and want lots of food. The bodysnatchers have the ability to jump from body to body when threatened, which makes them hard to catch. The government wants to catch them and trick the Occupants into brain-dead bodies, because the side effect of having been Occupied is brain damage. Get the beast out quick enough, and you might just have a doozy of a hangover, but if it's in there too long, you'll be nothing but a drooling vegetable, and the damage is irreversible.

    No, this isn't a satire on Americans, sorry.

    There are also these terrifying other aliens, called Slender Ones (subject to change). They're basically big preying mantises with octopus-like camouflage ability, and they hate Occupants. When they find an Occupant, they shred it, human body and all, so it's in the government's interest to try and capture the Occupied quickly, before they either get shredded by a wandering Slender One or turn into mental potatoes.

    Our hero is a former soldier. He was in (insert ongoing war here, present time-ish, so Iraq, Afgahistan, or TBA). He may have been under arrest, we'll see if that's necessary. Anyway, he was in the presence of an Occupied person at the beginning of the outbreak, when nobody knew that anything was going on yet. The two of them got blown up by an IED, and the Occupant's body was critically wounded. The Occupant jumped to him just as the second IED (double tap) went off, and he lost.... a lot of himself. Key point is that he suffered a TBI (traumatic brain injury) just at the moment of Occupation, so he's different. He's got this idiot living in his head, and he's got to negotiate constantly with it for control of whatever body he's in.

    Whatever body? What do you mean, Iain?

    Well, he finds out that they (he and his Occupant, who is tentatively nicknamed "Charley") have the ability to jump bodies, but only one at a time. In other words, he's still "tethered" to his original body, he can't hop from there to George and thence to Jill.

    He's good for the government, because they can use him to help round up Occupied people, since he's already Occupied, he's in no danger. There is a (insert large, only semi-portable mechanism) than can be used to imprison Occupants and keep them from jumping, so his job is to lure them into said mechanism.

    However, he finds out that the government isn't really that interested in rescuing the Occupied, but rather more in replicating his accident and creating an army (well, special team) of people like him. What good is having armed guards when they can be internally subverted, hmm, Mr. Dictator?

    Range limitations apply, I'm thinking about 5m? Maybe with the panicked ability to go farther?

    Anyway, he meets, on one of his missions, a Slender One who realizes that there's something different about him, and decides not to shred him.

    So we've got RoboCop plus Turner and Hooch with Our Hero dealing with his mental house-guest, Lethal Weapon where he occasionally meets his buddy the Slender One and tries to capture the Occupied before the S.O. kills them, and the mystery of why these two races are here in the first place.

    Which I know the answer to, but I'm keeping quiet on for a moment.

    My target is to write for one to two Zevons a day (a Zevon is the amount of time it takes for a Warren Zevon album to play through. He's my spirit animal) every day, with weekends and unscheduled hangovers off.

    Target is a short story, done and in the can, of around 5-7000 words, although if I can come up with more, I'll run with it.

    Sound plausible? I'll try and post word counts daily, and progress synopses as events warrant.

    And now I'm going to hit "Create Thread" and commit myself.

    Not yet........

    There.
     
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  2. zoupskim
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    zoupskim Contributing Member Contributor

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    Ill beta your thing if you want.
     
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  3. Iain Aschendale
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    Iain Aschendale Contributed Member Contributor

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    Thanks, I'll let you know when I've got something to the stage I feel is worthy of outside eyes.
     
  4. Iain Aschendale
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    Iain Aschendale Contributed Member Contributor

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    Okay, yesterday turned into one of those unscheduled hangovers I was talking about, and today was busy, but I did manage to get in one Zevon. Only 650~ish words, but more than I've done on the story in months, so:

    Progress.
     
  5. Iain Aschendale
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    Iain Aschendale Contributed Member Contributor

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    908 words, one full Zevon, time for a quick break.

    Keep in mind that this is ugly, "pound the keys" first draft word counts.
     
  6. Iain Aschendale
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    Iain Aschendale Contributed Member Contributor

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    Dammit. Sitting in a coffee shop across from the part time job and I discover my keyboard battery is dead. No way I can type at length on the screen, so I owe myself one more Zevon tomorrow.
     
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  7. zoupskim
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    zoupskim Contributing Member Contributor

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    I love the Zevon as a unit of measurement.
     
  8. Iain Aschendale
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    Iain Aschendale Contributed Member Contributor

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    Well, I took delivery of the package of meat (which is just that, online butcher shop), did four Zevons of exercise, and got the gyro meat prepped for smoking tomorrow. Unfortunately, zero Zevons of writing....

    Lots of thinking during PT time though, so still some progress.
     
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  9. Sniam
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    Sniam Member

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    You know I tried to google Zevon because I thought if was an actual measure of some kind ? :nosleep:
    Anyway... I would also be interested in beta reading your work, if you don't mind ! Seems really interesting !
    From the outline, it reminded me of an anime named "Parasite", in which aliens try to take over human brains. Some of them succeed, but the MC manages to stop the alien targetting him from getting to the brain. Long story short, the alien is now his right hand and they have to cohabitate, while other aliens try to kill them for being different.
    Sorry if this input disturbed you in your writing in any kind of way,
    Keep up the good work :)
     
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  10. Iain Aschendale
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    Iain Aschendale Contributed Member Contributor

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    I've seen the first season or so of "Parasyte" (as they write it here), and I'm sure it had some influence on my thought processes, so your spot-on there. Charlie, the alien who shares my MC's head, is much, much dumber than Migi though. (Is the right hand still named "Migi" in the official English version?)
     
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  11. Sniam
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    There is only one season out as for now, I think. I've watched the subbed version as well, but I don't think they will change the name of Migi. You can't really call someone "Right", right ? wait a minute . . .
     
  12. Iain Aschendale
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    Iain Aschendale Contributed Member Contributor

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    Update: 1200 words, 1.5 Zevons, time for a break.
     
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  13. Iain Aschendale
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    Iain Aschendale Contributed Member Contributor

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    1300 words, one Zevon. My pinkie hurts*, time to stop.

    *for some reason, my left pinkie finger roles over and I tend to type with the side of it. Need a forearm cushion too.
     
  14. Iain Aschendale
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    Iain Aschendale Contributed Member Contributor

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    Okay, wow, two weeks plus of nothing. Ran out of steam, there were still ideas I had ready to write, but.....

    My scenario was in my head, but not really my character and his motivations.

    Insomnia and a touch of depression hit tonight, and then I thought about him being unable to sleep, trapped in a Faraday cage, never to leave and....

    Still more character development to do in my head, but I've got a motivation that I can feel, which is a good start. Only 400 words, .5 Simon and Garfunkels (One Simon?), but I think something is unlocked again.

    More later.
     

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