Damn Plot Points


Pic of the day:  Windbuchen

798px-Windbuchencom

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Who is there, my friend, can climb to the sky?
Only the gods dwell forever in sunlight.
As for man, his days are numbered,
whatever he may do, it is but wind.

The Epic of Gilgamesh, Tablet III Babylonian version

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I haven’t written in days.  Not a single thing.  I couldn’t finish the book idea I had during Nanowrimo because I got stuck.  Too many things in the middle of the book that need to be altered and worked on that affect the outcome of the book to finish it before the end of the month.  That doesn’t mean it wont get finished, it does mean however that it won’t get done in the 30 days that Nanowrimo wants work done in.

But this entire exercise was not about Nano for me.  It  is about writing a book, or something book length that resembles a book with a plot, characters, action  and storytelling placed in such a way as to make the reader want to turn the page and find out what happened next.  I don’t know if what I have done so far resembles that basic concept, but I hope it does.

I feel a hair guilty about it as well.  I could have written in all likelihood, nothing stopped me from going to the keyboard and banging out a few hundred or even thousand words, and I’m not inhibited now either.   Every time I wrote something for that book I easily knocked out well over the average amount of words that was needed to get to 50,000 words in 30 days.  In my heart of hearts I know why I’m not working on it right now.

It isn’t good enough.  I think, or more appropriately feel like what I wrote wasn’t good enough, and that comes from a lack of planning and forethought on my part about the story.  I got to the part of the book where I am now, nearly 40,000 words in knowing that there is a great deal of work that has to be done to salvage the story.  I am going to get to it, but first I am going to extend my outline and work on those story elements that were lacking internal cohesion.

There was good news though. There was one bit of my writing that went well, that I really liked.  Character development.  The story which was going to be very much event driven came to be very much character driven, and the word pictures I drew of the characters was complex and showed effectively how the characters interacted with their surroundings.

Now if only I could get my damn plot points straightened out, life would be much simpler.

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Enkidu opened his mouth,
saying to Gilgamesh:
“where you’ve set your mind begin the journey,
let your heart have no fear, keep your eyes on me!

The Epic of Gilgamesh, Tablet III Babylonian version

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There is a reason for the quotes from the Epic of Gilgamesh.  As I have been looking for inspiration for my writing I have been listening to a great many audiobooks.  But since I don’t have any money to burn I have had to listen to free audiobooks, and I have a favorite site for them, Librivox.

I was listening to a bit of Kurt Vonnegut, the story 2 B R 0 2 B, Deathworld by Harry Harrison, and a number of short stories by H.P. Lovecraft. It was then that I went random and started listening to the work of a man named Donald Alexander Mackenzie in a book titled Myths and Legends: Myths of Babylonia and Assyria. Which I have found to be an absolutely fascinating book.  It was not the stories themselves though that had my curiosity piqued.  It was how closely the “myths” of Babylon and Assyria mirrors the beliefs, customs, stories and in some cases the names in the Bible.

Which is amazing seeing how we are several languages and several thousand years removed from Babylon.  It is pretty amazing to me to think that any religious person from anywhere on the globe at this point is essentially telling the same stories and using the same psychological constructs that were in use several millennium before the birth of Christ, and makes the point, though not in so many words, that stories attributed to Christ were in fact stories that had existed for a great deal more than a thousand years before Christ was born.

Interesting and amazing stuff.

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That’s it from here, America.  G’night.

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