Hey guys! I still intend to use this blog as a forum for writing, and talking about writing, but I’d like you to know that a few friends of mine and I have started up a second blog where we can be weird, sometimes assholes, and just talk about stuff. If you’re interested, please come check it out! If you hate what you see, are offended, or otherwise dislike weird posts and discussions of deeper thought… well, tough. That’s what it’s there for.
Category Archives: Uncategorized
Nothing else to see here… Move along…
Still here? Really?
Well, if you insist…
While Writing Underdog is meant to talk about writing, and my experiences with it, and literature, and a few fun things in between, I’m wondering if I might be able to do something more. I know I haven’t been posting much recently, but I have ideas, and they may be coming together.
Stay tuned and keep writing.
It is often said that our modern day comic book characters such as Superman, Spider-Man, and Batman are the “new mythological heroes” and in many ways this sentiment is true. However in others there simply cannot be a comparison, at least not at this point. Amongst the feathers of my odd upbringing is the tidbit that, despite my ongoing admiration of silver-screen superheroes, I never really got into reading comic books as a child. Instead of reading the latest edition of Spider-Man I enjoyed reading stories from the classical world, stories such as Jason and the Argonauts, The Twelve Labors of Heracles, and my personal favorite The Odyssey. Here I will identify the common threads between these brands of heroes and discern the differences that to this day keep them apart.
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This is where I got the inspiration to write my post on Divination…
Allow me to share a personal story with you all.
For the longest time I once suspected that I might have had mental problems when I was younger. It was nothing overtly serious such as split-personality disorder or being overly violent (although I did have a reputation for having a short fuse!), rather I began to notice that I hardly ever dreamed whenever I slept. In fact I would say I had an extremely vague dream every four or five months at most, and would always dream about a specific event that was neither fantastical or implausible as most people recall their dreams being. It was always a set location I had never visited or a conversation with a person I could either not remember or could not discern a voice for.
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As someone who studied some philosophy in college, I enjoyed this a lot. Particularly though, I enjoyed this from the perspective of applying writing to it.
“Water can flow and it can crash.” – Bruce Lee
It is the liquid of life. One of the purest and most powerful forces ever created. When it wants to be, it can be a harbinger of danger and destruction.
But at its essence, the phenomenon of water is one of balance. And here is why everyone should emulate this powerful element.
From engaging in osmosis within your body, to flowing through lakes, streams, rivers, and eventually to the ocean, water is constantly moving – and it does so with definite purpose. It knows where its headed, and it lets nothing be an obstacle.
It’s fluid and malleable, which allows it to seep through the smallest cracks and gently flow over tiniest pebbles. It’s unified and persistent in its greater force, which allows it to wear down even the greatest mountains and create canyons…
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I have a few questions for those of you who do read this blog.
Is there anything you’d like to see more of? (Besides posting. I know there needs to be more of that.)
Any topics you want me to ramble on about?
Anything I should add to the blog?
Not sure what else to say. I added several new pages to the blog, and intend to update them as soon as I can.
About Me – This was left kind of empty. I’m sure I’ll add to it as I feel like it.
My Library – I need to sit down and get a book list together before I can even think to start that.
My Writing – Another one that I’m sure I’ll add to as I feel like it. I might move Character Sketches over there, and start to post some actual writing.
Everyone always says that you have to write every day to become an author. Oddly enough, I never hear that advice given to artists. Instead, what I hear about is talent and natural skills. As if the ability to draw a circle is some God given blessing the rest of the population can never achieve without copious amounts of “talent.”
Does it take any less effort to practice drawing than to write? Do your hands cramp less from constant use (dooming you to a carpel tunnel destiny) more from painting or typing? Is one easier than the other?
All forms of art take practice. God given talent is for amateurs. Only the stubborn and the motivated succeed.
Last Wednesday my writing group was finally able to meet up after a 2 month break caused by holidays, health issues, and cold weather. It felt good to write. Liberating and stress relieving…
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I thought I’d bring out another of my characters today, for fun, and to try and keep some regular posting going. This is one of my homeless characters. He was initially created with a D&D-esque berserker in mind.
Carmine is a mercenary who wants to form his own company and become famous. He has short, red hair and brown eyes with an eye patch over one of them.
Having grown up in his father’s mercenary company, Carmine was fighting from a young age. When he grew older and more ambitious, he decided to set out on his own to make a name for himself, instead of just living off of the legacy of his father. At fifteen, he was on his third mission and got into a fight. A chip from the axe he blocked flew into his eye, causing him to lose it. It was later replaced with a magical one when he was seventeen.
Hopes & Dreams: Building a legendary mercenary company
Fears: Dying as just another unknown soldier
Hobbies/Habits: Dueling, Smoking, Short-Temper
Loves: Red, Fighting, Winning
Hates: Losing, Being cheated
Other Features: A magical red eye which also serves the purpose of converting anger to strength. Its power is blocked by his eye patch so he doesn’t injure himself with it. His sword is a wooden blade carved from a tree, which has wood as tough as metal, and conceals an actual sword.
Companions: A red horse named Blaze
November is past, and I’m a bit late on the posting. I would have started again yesterday, but unknowingly narrowing down a mysterious food allergy left me too sick to post for the day!
I think the logical question from here is where do we go? (Or where do I go, I suppose if the rest of you know?)
I did manage to cross the finish line. I have 50,000 words at my disposal in a raw, unedited (Mostly. I have a habit of correcting and ammending thoughts as I write) draft state, but my story is not yet complete. I dare say that it might have another 15-20,000 words to go! Editing will include more detail, and striking unnecessary words, probably raising the word count even still.
For writers, not just participants, it can be fun to read through the pep talks on the site. All of them are done by professional writers, and can be a source of inspiration, especially if you have a favorite author who has contributed. The three that helped me the most were Brandon Sanderson, Neil Gaiman, and Dave Eggers. I say this because I deeply respect these authors, and though I haven’t read any of Dave Eggers’ books (for which I do apologize), his talk on procrastination really hits home.
Furthermore, a recent information leak by a reader at Dragonmount said that he suspects one of the chapters in Sanderson’s new novel, A Memory of Light, is 50,000 words long and contains something like 70+ perspectives. That’s all of NaNo in one chapter. It shows just how much work and effort can go into a single book, and how much time and effort can go into making a single chapter.
But what does this mean to me, or you, aside from something to make you jealous. It means that we still have a long way to go to perfect the craft, but if they can do it, and if Brandon Sanderson can turn the equivalent of NaNoWriMo into a single chapter, then what’s there to stop us? Regardless of how far anyone made it, what matters the most is what you take away from the month long trials and tribulations of working on a novel. I got a writing habit, and inspiration to keep me going when the going gets tough. How about you?