Lifeline's Progress Journal 2020

Discussion in 'Progress Journals' started by Lifeline, Jan 23, 2020.

  1. Lifeline

    Lifeline North of South. Staff Contributor

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    'A Good Deed', done at 3.2k. You'll notice it's a full hundred of words shorter than the previous word count. That's the fault of editing on the fly and Micah's voice.

    Next is either the love-short (still ugh!) or the next in timeline 'The Perfect Shot', again from Ulf's POV. You remember the reporter who covered the UN Assembly? That's him. With his reporting, he got himself cashiered and was responsible for geopolitical implications that resonate still through the timeline. He sure opened a can of worms, and with 'The Perfect Shot', he'll open an even bigger one. In a very real sense, he'll incite the crash-and-burn event at the climax of Duty and Aptitude.
     
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  2. Lifeline

    Lifeline North of South. Staff Contributor

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    Outlining 'The Perfect Shot', done. That was two ugly hours.

    It only has a very distant semblance to the short by that title I wrote back in 2017 (I think it was), but back then I'd neither voice, practice, command of SPaGs, nor did I know what should be written. I remember thinking back than that I loved this short. Not so. This time around, I gave myself (almost) a headache with twisting my head around to look at all those different angles Ulf encounters and making sure they're consistent with events in past and future.

    'The Perfect Shot' is, if you will, the end of the second act for the compilation Duty. It gives the reader a bird's eyes view for how all the seventeen shorts that came before work together. Up till now, my shorts have been from individual POVs who (mostly) haven't been thinking beyond their own concerns.

    Ulf in his job as a journalist has made the acquaintance of Liam Hall (the father of Alexander, my protagonist) in 'Behind the Scenes', and is the worse for it. No fiancee, cashiered, he only has his conviction that he was justified in calling out Hall and would give almost anything now to find proof of events referred to in 'Equal Opportunity' (which have been incited by Hall). But, when he makes his way into the Middle East, he doesn't know about Micah's timeline in Aptitude and that he's going to step smack into the midst of it's conflicts, aligning Alexander's timeline Duty with Micah's timeline Aptitude.

    My headache is justified.
     
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2020
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  3. Lifeline

    Lifeline North of South. Staff Contributor

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    Oi. I don't like looking at maps, but it has to be done. Up till now it was okay to only have a hazy idea of the specific towns in my head, but looking at the coming short 'The Perfect Shot' and its associated travels, I really need to know where Micah and his secondary characters (one of which is driving the Aptitude timeline) have been and are in past and future.

    I need to look at road maps, language maps, provincial boundaries, points of strategic interest, and search all of these for likely towns which are sitting smack in the middle of the specific conditions that I need.

    And I need to visualise it (which means pictures of the towns and surroundings so I can describe them more or less accurately), because it'll only get worse once Alexander steps into this shitpile. So that means identifying, and connecting the dots. A travel map, not unlike planning a trip.

    If I should be doing anything, I should go out there and look at the places myself. Unfortunately, that's not practicable and won't be, covid and real worlds conflicts combined.

    I hate maps.
     
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2020
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  4. Lifeline

    Lifeline North of South. Staff Contributor

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    1k in 'The Perfect Shot'.

    Ulf has met the person who's gonna get him on the road to the shitpile, though he doesn't know it yet. He only knows that he's gonna get his heart's desire (for the trifle of a soul...)
     
  5. Lifeline

    Lifeline North of South. Staff Contributor

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    1.5k in 'The Perfect Shot'.

    Writing's going slow, first because of real-life troubles (yesterday), then (today) because you wouldn't believe how much time and effort it takes me and my landlady to buy, prepare, cook, and then eat a duck dinner. We went shopping at 10am and just now finished cleaning up after dinner.

    Here's to taking a nap and to a night of writing. Steady wins the race...
     
  6. Lifeline

    Lifeline North of South. Staff Contributor

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    'The Perfect Shot' is a short that's very slow in writing. And here I was congratulating myself for speeding up, just a few posts prior. Hubris, that's what it was. I've only written 200 words or so till yesterday, and I don't see that getting quicker any time soon. I don't even know why. I've written crises of conscience and otherwise before, and mostly they just flow. Why is this short different? o_O
     
  7. Lifeline

    Lifeline North of South. Staff Contributor

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    I think I've broken out of the stalls with 'The Perfect Shot'. The difficult part—buildup to Ulf finding himself in a situation he's not comfortable in anymore and denying to himself what's gonna happen—has been concluded. Now it should be a straight road down the shitpile.

    wc 2.6k as of this morning.
     
  8. NK_UT

    NK_UT Active Member

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    I have a similar situation planned for FN-528 in the second part of the Destiny Outbound trilogy, but I've been stressing over how to pull it off. How do you set up and execute the part of Ulf's arc in which he finds himself in the situation he was previously cool with but now is no longer so, and then help him extricate himself from it as part of his character arc?
     
  9. Lifeline

    Lifeline North of South. Staff Contributor

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    For me, key are the people around him. He enlists help to get to where he wants to go without realising that these other people have agendas of their own. If he'd been paying attention he could have seen that (foreshadowing is your friend here), but he was too preoccupied with his own problem.
    He doesn't. That's what I meant with the devil offering him his heart's desire for the trifle of a soul. I'll not go into details, but people died because of him, and he doesn't want to stop because it'd mean they died because he was wrong. If he'd get out (which he can't, realistically, without loosing his life), he'd have to squarely face that fact. Not happening.
     
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  10. NK_UT

    NK_UT Active Member

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    Very compelling. I'm taking notes! Haha.
     
  11. Lifeline

    Lifeline North of South. Staff Contributor

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    Another 700 words this morning in 'The Perfect Shot', bringing the word count up to 4k. Huh. I'll need at least another 2k to conclude this short. I'm watching the words pile up.
     
  12. Lifeline

    Lifeline North of South. Staff Contributor

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    Point of note for the Pantsers/Gardeners like me: If you do an outline (and sometimes they are very much sensible, particularly when the story is complex), don't forget it in the heat of writing. I fell into this trap and this morning found myself at a point where I was not sure where to go next to. And then I found my outline again—which solved all my problems because I'd solved them before. Just... was too caught up in the story and writing to remember. Lucky me, I only had to clear up a very few words (maybe paragraph length in all) to latch on to where I'm going next.

    So tomorrow morning I'm writing further. 5k in 'The Perfect Shot', and the future looms. It'll be—at least—another 2-3k before I'm done with this short. This story is somehow special, although they all are, each in their own way. But this one builds the bridge between past and future and weaves two individual timelines and the fate of four peoples together. It's humbling to see how it comes together.

    Happy writing!
     
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2020
  13. Catrin Lewis

    Catrin Lewis Contributor Contributor Community Volunteer

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    In general I like maps. A lot. What I don't like is online maps where it's nearly impossible to get a broad view of a region without losing the detail. The current iteration of Google Maps is especially bad.

    I ordered paper Michelin maps of Bavaria and Baden-Wuerttemberg to plan out my setting, and even they don't tell me everything I need to know. And when you're dealing with conditions as they were in 1983, oof! Thank God I still have my map of Switzerland from my 1988-89 cut-rate grand tour of west-central Europe. It shows just enough of southern Germany to keep me from making some gosh-awful mistakes.

    Are you working from paper, or keeping it online? Either way, it can be frustrating. But darn it, it has to be done.
     
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  14. Catrin Lewis

    Catrin Lewis Contributor Contributor Community Volunteer

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    Duck? That's what I've elected to have for American Thanksgiving tomorrow, since I won't be joining my usual gang of friends due to COVID restrictions. Oh, dear. Looks like I'd better not sleep till 2:00 in the afternoon.
     
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  15. Lifeline

    Lifeline North of South. Staff Contributor

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    Duck.

    Clear the rest of your afternoon of work. We found out that ducks suck use up all your energy and leave you too exhausted to move. I believe it's their revenge...
     
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  16. Catrin Lewis

    Catrin Lewis Contributor Contributor Community Volunteer

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    At least I've made sure mine is thawed. And I didn't have to wring its little neck or pluck and draw it or anything. It's been in the fridge thawing since late Saturday and it'd be a good joke if that is too long.

    I don't get off my retail job till 11:00 PM. Thankfully, school is only a half day and I can leave in about ten minutes. I'll try to get the brown rice stuffing started this afternoon, before I have to report to work at 5:30.

    What's going to take the most time, I anticipate, is the pumpkin mousse I plan to make instead of pie. But this is something for the What Are You Having for Supper thread.

    It's a good thing I'm not expecting guests. We wouldn't eat till 10:00 tomorrow evening.
     
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  17. Lifeline

    Lifeline North of South. Staff Contributor

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    I'm about 5.6k in 'The Perfect Shot'.

    I believe I've never done as much thinking writing a short as I'm doing with this one. In between writing a few sentences further (baby steps, I know), I fiddle with my older shorts to include bits and pieces of landscape, mannerisms, or household items that crop up in the current short but have been there in earlier shorts as well. It's not rewriting but including stuff so that the reader can recognise them later on in 'The Perfect Shot'—and even much, much later, when my two compilations Aptitude and Duty draw together into the novel A Personal War and my two MCs find themselves in the location of the beginning of it all.
     
  18. Lifeline

    Lifeline North of South. Staff Contributor

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    Remember the scientific editor's job? Got it. Freelance, but still. The foot's in the door. Wohooooo!
     
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2020
  19. Stormburn

    Stormburn Contributor Contributor

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    Congrats!
     
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  20. big soft moose

    big soft moose An Admoostrator Staff Supporter Contributor Community Volunteer

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    yay :superyesh::cheerleader:
     
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  21. Lifeline

    Lifeline North of South. Staff Contributor

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    Have been too hyped up by my success to write today, other than settle on a location for past, present, and future. And I chalked up a logline for the novel, after nearly two years of fudging (and don't tell me it's premature because I know it is. Anyway. By now you should know that I stick to my story like super glue.).
     
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2020
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  22. SNJade96

    SNJade96 Senior Member

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    Congratulations!
     
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  23. Gladiolus83

    Gladiolus83 Senior Member

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    Good luck with the new job! And congratulations!
     
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  24. Lifeline

    Lifeline North of South. Staff Contributor

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    After two days of first getting distracted by my acceptance as freelance editor and then working the first job, I sat down to write.

    Outlining is fun. No, it's not, not when you're a pantser like me, but it really and truly helps if your story is as complicated as mine is. To keep track of the developements in my shorts I compiled a txt file to summarise what happened in any given short in the timeline. Not only does it help me keep track of the different locations and happenings, but if anyone asks me for a synopsis of what I've written, I can now give it to them.

    And in 'The Perfect Shot' I've made the connection between past and present. Tomorrow evening, I hopefully will make the connection to the future.

    I'll need one or two more days to finish up the current assignment. Then we'll see when/if the next comes. I'm still on trial, methinks.
     
  25. Catrin Lewis

    Catrin Lewis Contributor Contributor Community Volunteer

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    Wonderful! Well done!
     
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