NaNoWriMo 2012 Has Arrived!

Today is the 1st of November, which means one thing – the start of NaNoWriMo! Actually, it also means another thing – I have been incredibly slack this year, and not blogged about NaNo at all yet. Crazy, I know! Thing is, this year at university, studying at postgraduate level, it’s really kicked my butt, hahaaa. And so I’ve been scrambling to get my Honours thesis written and rewritten and rewritten again and finally handed in. Hooray! But because I handed it in on 29th October, it means I’ve had little time for NaNoWriMo blogging, for which I am very sorry.

But, anyway. Here I am! And I am fizzing with excitement, ready to spontaneously combust, wheeeeeee! ๐Ÿ˜€

NaNoWriMo truly is my favourite time of year. It’s pretty perfectly placed for me actually – normally, I just about finishing up my study for the year, and summer is starting to make itself at home. NaNoWriMo is like a reward for surviving uni, really. Something which I feel is especially true this year, as this year has been a bajillion times more stressful than my past three years at uni, and I seriously felt like I was losing my mind sometimes. But now, NaNoWriMo. A whole month where I get to write what I want to write, not what I have to write. A whole month of putting aside special time to do something I love. A whole month of writing.

Fittingly enough, this year I’ve decided to write something purely for fun – Star Trek XI fanfiction! As you all might know, I write quite a bit of fanfic (when I have the time!), but for NaNoWriMo I usually choose to write original fiction. But this year… I just had this idea that wouldn’t leave me alone! It’s an AU fic (Alternate Universe) which means that it’s not actually set within the Star Trek universe – instead, my fic is set in a contemporary FBI environment, but using the Star Trek XI characters. It’ll focus on Jim and Bones, two FBI agents. Actually, I might as well paste my synopsis here!

Jim Kirk has been around the block more than a few times, despite being pretty new to “all this FBI stuff”.ย  Jim knows he capable of being an awesome FBI agent though, and has a desperate thirst to prove himself. When his ranking officer, Christopher Pike, sends him off to the only known address of a “retired” Agent Leonard McCoy – a seedy downtown bar – Jim finds himself in a whirl of suspicion, mystery and, inexplicibly, attraction to the rugged agent. Because while Leonard might seem like just a handsome but jaded divorcee, his background at the FBI holds more questions than Jim can find answers for. Jim and Leonard are thrust into a game of cat and mouse with their supposed FBI colleagues – and the stakes are paid with lives. Jim and Leonard must learn to trust each other enough to work together, to discover exactly what the hell is going on, and to avoid getting each other killed. Although they might be more in danger of killing each other, the way they’re getting along. On top of this, Jim has to deal with his new found attachment and attraction to Leonard, which may or may not be returned. Not even love is easy for these two, though – in fact, that might be their biggest obstacle of all.

I’ve always wanted to read a fic like this, so I thought, why not write it myself? ๐Ÿ˜‰ I have… an outline of sorts. I’m certainly not as organised as I usually am! But I do have one thing that I don’t usually have – an epic playlist. Music has always been a great inspiration to me, and so compiling a list of songs that are relevant to my characters’ journeys has been so helpful in figuring out what they’re feeling and doing. I also have some awesome soundtrack music from The Bourne Legacy film to get me into the crime/thriller mood.

And, of course, there’s my favourite NaNoWriMo staple songs, about NaNoWriMo, which you can find here ๐Ÿ˜‰ AND this year, there’s a NaNoMusical! *flail* I think this is such an incredible idea – I adore musicals, and I adore NaNoWriMo, so I can’t think of anything more perfect ๐Ÿ˜€ You can find the first episode here!

Now, I wish I’d had time to write a blog post with some advice for any fellow Wrimos out there. I did write a post last year which I still fully abide by, my NaNoWriMo Toolkit. As for the Desktop Calendar, the same artist has a 2012 one here – it’s amazing! I love the inspirational quotes and prompts (and occasional tough love :D). And I’m using an updated 2012 version of the NaNo Report card here!

Other than that, my best advice would be to…

If you like, you can add me as a NaNo Buddy here, or follow me on Twitter here, where I am and will be tweeting madly about #NaNoWriMo!! All that’s left to say is… let’s have some fun this month!

Word Count: 1,308 words
Write on!
Bri xx

Advertisements

Day 30 โ€” Whatever Tickles Your Fancy: ‘Torchwood: A Musical!’

Phew! We’ve finally arrived at the last day of the 30 Day Challenge… wow! Amazed that I didn’t get lazy and give up halfway through ๐Ÿ˜‰ Although, I do hate leaving things unfinished. Anyways, thought I’d do something fun today…

…and how could anything be more fun than a Torchwood Musical? ๐Ÿ˜€

While ‘Torchwood: A Musical!‘ may be familiar to some of you, I better give you all the back story, just in case. It was April 2011, and I was seriously considering taking part in my very first Script Frenzy – writing a 100 page script in the month of April. I was all hyped up from my first ever NaNoWriMo win the previous November, so I decided to give it a go – BUT, what on earth could I write about?

It’s a bit obvious to me, now! I love Torchwood, love musicals – and it was around April that I’d been discovering musicals I’d never heard of, so I was super enthusiastic about it all ๐Ÿ˜› So… why not take the plot and characters of Torchwood, and throw them on the stage?

I decided pretty early on that I’d use songs from other musicals, and just re-write the lyrics to suit my musical. This is because sadly, I have little musical talent in my bones, so would have NO chance of actually composing the music too! But this was a really fun way to go about it, because I could choose songs that suited the situations/feelings that my characters were going through at that time.

So here’s the track list for ‘Torchwood: A Musical!’ so far, for what is posted online… (so there will be more to come!)

  1. Day In The Life Of Torchwood: Jellicle Songs For Jellicle Cats (Cats)
  2. Better Butler: Sorting Hat Song (Harry Potter)
  3. Jones, Ianto Jones: I Know Him So Well (Chess)
  4. The Cybernetic Touch: The Phantom Of The Opera (The Phantom Of The Opera)
  5. Better Butler (Reprise): Sorting Hat Song (Harry Potter)
  6. 51st Century Pheromones: Skimbleshanks the Railway Cat (Cats)
  7. Betrayed Me: Angel Of Music (The Phantom of the Opera)
  8. I Don’t Know How To Love You: I Don’t Know How To Love Him (Jesus Christ Superstar)
  9. Betrayed Me (Reprise): Angel Of Music (The Phantom Of The Opera)
  10. Look At Me: Think Of Me (The Phantom Of The Opera)
  11. Back To Work: Girl Meets Boy (Reprise) (Sunset Boulevard)
  12. Part Of The Team: Go Go Go, Joseph! (Joseph And The Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat)
  13. Look At Me (Reprise): Think Of Me (The Phantom Of The Opera)
  14. Darkness Of The Dead: Music Of The Night (The Phantom Of The Opera)
  15. I Feel Happy: I Feel Pretty (West Side Story)
  16. Love Changes Everything: Love Changes Everything (Aspects Of Love)

As you can see, I did tend to stick with Andrew Lloyd Webber at the beginning, because that’s when I was really getting into his work – but I promise you, I do branch out later on ๐Ÿ˜‰

And as for the Torchwood side of things, well – I had to be kinda of selective as to what I could include, because if I tried to incorporate all the wee subplots, the audience would be getting far too confused and would lose track of all the minor characters, while not being able to connect properly with the main characters. Plus, it would end up being a week-long musical! *faints* So I decided to centre it around Ianto, naturally, and Jack as the other focus. The rest of the team of course play important roles in their own right, and support Ianto and Jack. Although the obstacle of Lisa/Cyberwoman is definitely significant in the series, I think I emphasised that particular event, and made it more important. There’s also a second main obstacle, this time connected to Jack – but ahhhh, I won’t say, because that would be spoilery!! ๐Ÿ˜‰

*grins*

It’s amazing how much I’ve grown as a writer, too. I’ve learned to listen to the rhythm and the beat of words, and have depended on many online rhyming dictionaries! I now know how to format a script, at least in a basic beginner way. Most importantly, I’ve learned about the power of dialogue. Seeing as you must limit description, I found that I really had to put my characters’ feelings into their dialogue (as well as their personal stage directions, gestures, etc), so that was awesome! ๐Ÿ™‚

So, yes! So far I have ‘Act I’ posted online and am almost finished posting ‘Act II’… and then I’ll move on to the final Act, ‘Act III’! ๐Ÿ™‚ And truth be told, I haven’t actually finished writing it yet! During my rewriting of it, to post it online, I’ve changed some things round and added in whole new songs – and even whole new scenes! Some of my lovely reviewers have even made some song suggestions that I’ve decided to insert – which have fit in perfectly! I do love feedback by the way, so feel free to leave reviews ๐Ÿ™‚ The reception that ‘Torchwood: A Musical!’ has received is just amazing – I honestly expected it to be very unpopular, because it’s something new, and as far as I’m aware, it’s the only Torchwood musical in existence ๐Ÿ˜‰ Wheeeee! But I’m glad to have amused and entertained people with it, as I originally wrote it entirely for fun, and for myself! How selfish of me ๐Ÿ˜› heheee.

Sooo… that’s my thoughts about my first adventure into script/musical writing! I have a feeling it won’t be my last… I already have some vague ideas for a sequel!! I sure hope you all will stick around to help me finish ‘Torchwood: A Musical!’ off with a bang! ๐Ÿ™‚

And here ends the 30 Day Blog Challenge! Hope you had fun alongside me. I am 100% sure I won’t be posting every day from now on, but I will definitely try not to let this blog die – that would be incredibly tragic! I’ll definitely see you all soon.

Have fun!
Bri xx

Day 20 โ€” A Hobby Of Yours

Gosh! This one was way harder than it should be. ๐Ÿ˜€

I mean, I do kind of have hobbies. I read, write, listen to music, go walking, watch movies, watch rugby games, enjoy baking… but they’re pretty normal things to do. I used to collect stamps and coins, but gave them up loooong ago ( my brother now collects coins though! :)) Sports aren’t really my thing, I’m far too uncordinated for them – although, I did used to really like volleyball.

But… a hobby. Something that I regularly do for pleasure in my leisure time, so Wikipedia tells me.

Okay.

The most obvious thing – and one of the only things I could think of, aside from wasting time on the internet – was writing fanfiction.

Now, before you all start groaning at the thought… let me explain ๐Ÿ™‚

My involvement with fanfic began way back when I was in my first year of high school – so, 13 years old! Back then, I was into the Harry Potter fandom. It’s rather hilarious when I re-read the journals I used to keep at that age – according to my journal, reading fanfic gave me “enjoyment, and ideas”. Uh huh… not exactly the biggest revelation in history ๐Ÿ˜‰ I was into the normal ships, Harry/Ginny and Ron/Hermione. Crazy to think of now, of course… heheee, but it seemed like a natural step from the original stories.

It was during this time that I started writing my own fanfiction too. I would absolutely cringe if I were to read THOSE again – they were terribly cliched, and short, and… just. BAD. I mean, the title of my first one: “Daybreak Duo”. *awkward cough* Lovely alliteration… heh.

But anyway, I do remember having a wee trouble over my budding fanfiction addiction – because back then, I didn’t have my own laptop, so had to use the family computer. So, of course, my Mum found out what I was doing – and I remember her saying “I’m not paying for internet just for you to read stories!!” Hahaaa. This makes me feel so old. ๐Ÿ˜€ I also got into trouble for trying to get into “Mature” rated stories – I was completely innocent at 13, you know, so I had no idea what it would even entail ๐Ÿ˜‰ (*cough* Different story now…) Luckily I didn’t corrupt myself that early on, so went back to reading nice fluffy stories about Harry and Ginny declaring their undying love for each other… *shakes head*

But yes, so it wasn’t until I was 14, or nearly 15, that I really started writing fanfic, properly. It was then that I discovered my ‘true’ calling, as it were, in Harry/Draco fanfic. I’ve almost given up trying to defend this pairing to people, especially my fellow die-hard Harry Potter friends. I just like it, deal with it! ๐Ÿ˜€ I also turned my eyes to Remus/Sirius, which is brilliant because it is – I believe – a LOT more likely to be canon… ๐Ÿ˜‰ Gasp, the horror! But honestly, what a delicious couple.

And, when I was 15, I started my major break-through as a fanfic writer – my first chaptered story – called ‘Not A Malfoy Anymore‘. It was – and in a way, still is – my most successful/popular piece of fanfic. Most hits (currently 200,000+) and most reviews (currently 400+). And most chapters (23) and words (86,210). However, when I look back on it now, I can’t help but cringe!! I guess it’s encouraging to see that during the story – which I began in June ’05, and finished in April ’08, so it took me nearly three years to write!! – that I do improve and progress as a writer. The beginning chapters are AWFUL to me now, but by the ending, I think it’s safe to say that I’m getting better. If I’m allowed to say that about my own fic! ๐Ÿ˜› This is one of the reasons why I think that fanfiction has truly changed me, in helping me to write something at all, and therefore helping me to get better!

Practice makes perfect, after all. (And yes, I’m still practicing ;))

So, I finished that during my last year of high school, but by this time, I was writing less and less fanfic. The main reasons for that were because I was studying a lot, to get good grades to get into university… but also because the Harry Potter fandom was dying, just very slightly – in comparison to when I’d first entered it, that is. So there was less compulsion for me to write fanfic.

My first year of university was a complete fail when it came to writing. I was busy… experiencing everything – living away from home for the first time, making a bajillion new friends – I had no time for writing. Plus, the Harry Potter fandom was incredibly dead now, in regards to my pairings and interests anyway. Why should I keep on writing fanfic?

Another year of uni started – a much less social year, I screwed my head on properly – and along came Torchwood.

Oh! It was marvellous. I devoured the series in a matter of a week or two. I watched, and rewatched. And then I went fanfic hunting, and liked what I read.

I watched some more.

And then, I was ready to write my own fanfic. That’s one thing that I’ve always felt it quite important, to me. In writing fanfic, I always try to be as faithful and as true to the actual characters as I can, no matter how much I’m actually changing the plots and situations of the original series. You have to get the character right. Which is why I spent so much time studying the series. Anyway, obviously my interests lay in Jack/Ianto – although, of course, I just adore Tosh, and Owen, and don’t worry, I’m not a Gwen hater either! ๐Ÿ™‚ My first Torchwood fic, ‘Need You Now‘ was a two part fic, inspired by Lady Antebellum’s song. I was absolutely bowled over by the fantastic response to it, particularly considering that it IS only a two part thing, not with many chapters. I think it’s still my most ‘popular’ Torchwood fanfic, if you’re working out the average reviews per chapter. Crazy stuff!

With such a delightful entrance into the Torchwood fandom, how could I not keep going? Since then, I’ve written the most fanfic I’ve ever written, consistently, regularly. Which still isn’t as much as some people – but I really can’t spare the time to make it a full-time job.

Hence, the hobby ๐Ÿ˜‰

My longest Torchwood fic is currently my musical, ‘Torchwood: A Musical!‘ which I am completely surprised that people actually read!! I wrote it for Script Frenzy this year, which was HEAPS of fun, and I’m actually still in the process of writing it now – it’s not finished yet! (gosh, I better get onto that…!) It’s at 24,758 words so far, but as it’s a script, not prose, it’s not really going to be an epic 100,000+ word project.

So, that brings me to where I’m sitting now. I still occasionally go back and re-read old Harry Potter fanfic favourites, as my recent Fanfic post indicates. I am obviously comfortable in the Torchwood fandom, still writing and reading.

And yet…

I feel like I’m almost on the cusp of a new stage in my affair with fanfiction. Lately, I’ve been really getting into the Sherlock fandom. I’ve been finding more fics to read, and watching the series more and more times over. As yet, I don’t have any plans for a Sherlock fanfic – although I have had some ideas! – but who knows what the future may bring. Plus, with the new series of Torchwood, and all the controversy that entails, I can’t help but notice that the Torchwood fandom seems to be dying just a tiny bit now. I, of course, will keep on writing what I’m writing, and I have many other random ideas for new Torchwood fics, but the fact remains…

Ah well. Only time will tell! Crazy things do happen. In fact, sometimes I just get this random urge to go back to my abandoned Harry Potter fic, that I began just before beginning university ie. when everything went crazy. Hahaa. I’d have to completely scrap it and start again. And that is highly unlikely to happen. But one never knows…

Sooo… any closet fanfic writers out there? Please, come out! ๐Ÿ˜€ Or, alternatively – any other interesting hobbys that people have? ๐Ÿ™‚

Have fun!
Bri xx

(*wipes forehead* Phew, longest post yet, I think! Do hope I didn’t bore you!)

Day 15 โ€” A Fanfic

*bounces*

Yay! I’ve been looking forward to this day of the Challenge for aaaages ๐Ÿ˜€ The only problem with today is the difficulty I had in choosing just a few fanfics!! ๐Ÿ™‚ Decided that I should pick one or two from my three favourite fandoms. It’s only fair, after all ๐Ÿ˜‰

Harry Potter

Title: Bond
Author:
Anna Fugazzi
Pairing: Harry/Draco
Rating: M
Word Count: 183,676 words (complete).
Summary:
In which Harry and Draco find themselves forced together as victims of a sinister spell – that is, a bonding spell. Like a marriage. Because that’s always going to go down well ๐Ÿ˜‰ But is it just a mere accident, or will things turn deadly?

Bloody love this! ๐Ÿ˜€ It’s technically an AU, as it’s only canon compliant up to OotP. But then, it was started before HBP and DH were even released, so not surprising! ๐Ÿ™‚ I’ve re-read it more times that I care to count – it is a long fic, but deliciously so!

I just adore how in character both Harry and Draco are, and how convincingly they wade themselves through their situation. Of course they’re going to hate each other, and try to kill each other, if they’re suddenly thrown into a bond. Anna gives us some really really sweet moments too, nice fluff to counteract all the angst going on. The way they interact with each other is just utterly perfect. Plus, the fact that life still goes on around them – the politics with Death Eaters and Voldemort and all that – really shapes the fic’s universe. The picture is from an illustration made especially for ‘Bond‘ ๐Ÿ™‚ It’s one of the more famous Harry/Draco stories, as the amount of reviews clearly shows!! If you’re into Harry/Draco fanfic, and you haven’t read it, or heard of it, something must be wrong with you ๐Ÿ˜‰

Title: Eclipse
Author: Mijan
Pairing: Harry/Draco
Rating: T
Word Count: 287,717 words (complete).
Summary: Draco thinks he’s doing the right thing, kidnapping Harry and taking him to Voldemort. It’s the perfect plan… but when Draco’s world turns upside down, the fight to save himself – and Harry bloody Potter! – begins, and the battle will take them to hell and back. That is, if they come back.

This fic is also canon compliant up to OotP, and is even longer than ‘Bond‘ – but this is definitely a good thing ๐Ÿ˜‰ Once again, Harry and Draco are forced to work together, but this time, they’re completely on their own. The setting is the outdoors, for the most part, which is magical! There are some super cute moments, and some angsty moments, both of which satisfy the squee. I remember staying up until around 3am many nights – it’s true!! – just to read more of this. Truly addictive, one that I’ve re-read many times too. This is also an illustration done especially for the fic. Love it! ๐Ÿ™‚

Torchwood


Title: To The Sticking Place
Author: Zephyras
Pairing: Jack/Ianto
Rating: M
Word Count: 105,814 words (complete).
Summary: AU. Torchwood One Agent!Ianto is a ruthless bastard. The end justifys the means. Failure is not an option. There is always a choice, except when there isn’t. This is Ianto Jones – on the surface, at least – and no one seems to be able to get near enough to get deeper than that. Not even Jack Harkness. Right?

*fangirls* Okay, this is one of the most bloody believeable AU fics I’ve read, for any fandom! Ianto in this fic is completely the opposite of what he is like in Torchwood – he’s a BAMF, but sometimes, it’s easy to hate him. He just seems so damn cold! Of course, the magic of Zephyras’ skill is the unravelling of his complex character… gosh! I just love it. It’s wonderfully written, and don’t let the length of the chapters put you off. It definitely doesn’t have as many reviews as it deserves, but it is a relatively new fic. And her first Torchwood fic, believe it or not! This pic wasn’t made specifically for this fic – it’s actually a sketch of the 1×12 “Captain Jack Harkness” episode, where Ianto is about to shoot Owen for opening the rift. Basically, BAMF. And I thought this pic suited the fic perfectly ๐Ÿ˜€

Title: Jones and Harkness
Author: Furious Dee
Pairing: Jack/Ianto
Rating: T
Word Count: 157,199 words (now complete).
Summary: AU. Based on Wodehouse’s Jeeves and Wooster series! Jack Harkness is a rich, foolish and flirtatious layabout. Enter Ianto Jones, professional valet and master of subtlety. The mismatched pair becomes impossibly close, but at what cost in 1930’s Wales? Hilarity, fluff, and the odd dash of angst – perfect combination!

Squeeeee!

Okay, so this fic is still in progress, but it is already that good! It is written by the gorgeous, talented Furious Dee, who I frequently am distracted by on Twitter and Skype ๐Ÿ˜‰ She’s combined Jeeves and Wooster with Torchwood, altering both canons perfectly to suit the story line of ‘Jones and Harkness‘. I delight in finding references to Torchwood quotes, or even Jeeves and Wooster quotes – this fic has converted me, you see! I particularly adore the way in which she gets inside Ianto and Jack’s heads – so convincing, so easy to imagine and live! As Bertie would say about Jeeves, what a marvel! ๐Ÿ˜‰

[EDIT: This fic is now FINISHED! Which is both sad and wonderful. Luckily she’s planning a sequel or two… *dances*]

Sherlock (BBC)

Title: A Love With No Name (series)
Author: aceofhearts61
Pairing: Sherlock/John
Rating: T
Word Count: 49,955 words (WiP?)
Summary: In which Asexual!Sherlock and Straight!John are platonically in love life partners. Involving cute moments of love and understanding.

Aaaah!! Seriously, this turns me into such a fangirl, it’s embarrassing. It’s. Just. So. Cute! The idea of Sherlock – a sociopath, by his own diagnosis – caring so much about a human being – John, no less – is very sweet. I like the angle that the asexual element brings to these fics too. It’s by no means essential to reading the fics, but it’s an apt way of describing how far the fics will go. There’s no sex here – I know, the horror… ๐Ÿ˜‰ It’s all about the emotional connection. Which is true to their characters, in every version of Sherlock Holmes really. Their relationship really is unique, and fascinating to explore. Love this! I just found this fan art, wasn’t made specifically for this series. Wonderful, isn’t it? ๐Ÿ™‚

Phew! So, that’s a short, selective list of my favourite fanfics. It’s funny to realise that they’re all kind of AU, to some extent. I think the most important thing to me, though, is how faithful the fics are to the characters. Honestly so believeable, and wonderful.

I’d love to hear from you guys!! Have any of you stumbled across these ones before? Do you have any fic recommendations yourselves? Super keen.

Have fun!
Bri xx