Showing posts with label writing. Show all posts
Showing posts with label writing. Show all posts

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Here's another chapter of A Decaying World. And that's about all I have to say for now. I should really try to realize my horror collection soon, but I'm not sure I'll find the time to finish it up in the coming days as I've got some things coming up.


Chapter 17: In the Depths of Belia's Tower

Drake hadn't had a good night's rest since the destruction of Arlington, but when the beast overpowered his mind he was plunged into darkness, into an almost comatose state. He could see flashes of reality when the vampire's hold on his body was compromised, but they never lasted for long and quickly faded like a dream. Only when a radiant light penetrated every corner of his mind did he finally resurface.
Cold wind howled past his ears when he sat up. It had already chilled his body to the bone, so he rubbed his freezing hands while inspecting his surroundings. Grey rocks could be seen in every direction. They were illuminated by a ghostly flame floating above. Similar flames could be seen in the distance, but the area in-between was filled by impenetrable darkness.
Look who's finally awake,” said an awfully familiar voice from above. Drake's own voice, just more deeper, more menacing.
What the...?” Drake jumped to his feet and looked up, discovering his spitting image floating through the air. It was sprawled out on a disc made of darkness. “Who are you?”
His doppelganger chuckled and brushed through his slicked-back hair before he spared him a glance. His crimson eyes seemed to glow in the darkness. “Come on, have you already forgotten me? I'm the darkness slumbering within your mind. The source of your power.”
Drake furrowed his brow and looked around in confusion. “Why does it looks so different this time?”
Because we're not inside your head.”
Then why are we separated? Have I been cured?”
The beast laughed and his voice reverberated throughout the darkness, echoing back and forth from barriers unseen. “There is no cure. The only way to destroy me is to destroy us both.” He raised his right hand and snapped it shut, as if grasping onto something that couldn't bee seen. “But there's magic in air, magic so powerful that it was able to split us apart. Don't get your hopes up, though. It's only temporary.”
Drake sighed and rubbed the back of his neck. “How did we even end up here?”
Some elven bitch threw me through a portal. Said she'd let me go if I survived this place.”
So why haven't you left yet? Couldn't you just float to the exit?”
I tried, but whoever created this place must have made sure that his puzzles aren't circumvented.”
What puzzles?”
See that lever over there?” The beast pointed towards an object that Drake had mistaken for a stalagmite. “Give it a shove and you'll see.”
Drake had no reason to trust the beast, but seeing as the rest of the island was empty, he didn't have much of a choice. So he strolled towards the lever, wrapped his arms around its top, then gave it a good push. The darkness seemed to grow brighter and a faint hum filled the air.
Look behind you.”
A path paved with glowing platforms had appeared in the air, connecting this island to another in the distance. It faded out of existence the moment Drake let go off the lever.
See? None of us can cross over unless the other holds onto the lever.”
Couldn't you have used your magic to hold it in place?”
Do you think I'm retarded? I've already tried everything I could think of, but I can neither float away nor manipulate the lever without actually touching it.”
Drake wrapped his arms around his body and rubbed his freezing flesh. He might as well have not worn anything, so easily did the cold penetrate his body. “What did the elves hope to achieve by throwing us in here?”
I guess they want us to cooperate so that I don't take over your mind again.”
You did what?” Drake looked up, his voice mad with anger.
The beast shrugged with a smile on his face. “You're the one who lost control and almost got himself killed. What choice did I have? If you'd simply accept what you are, we wouldn't be in this situation.”
I accept that I'm a creature of the darkness, but I'll won't let myself be consumed by my hunger!”
And that is why we will always wrestle for control.”
Whatever. Let's just get this over with,” Drake grumbled and turned around, activating the lever again.
The disc below the vampire dissipated and he fell gracefully, his descend slowed down by his fluttering robes. “You're letting me go first? How nice of you.” He vanished instantly, accelerating faster than the eye could see.
Another path appeared in front of Drake, prompting him to let go off the lever. He stared it for a moment, trying to conjure the energy needed to cross it as fast as his counterpart, but whatever magic had separated them had also returned him to his original state. So he sprinted across instead, just in case the beast decided to drop him into the void.
Two levers were waiting for Drake on the other side. One of them occupied the northern edge, the other the southern edge. It was only logical to assume that these were part of a puzzle, but they looked identical to each other and there were no hints to be seen.
Hey, did you also—” You don't need to scream. We're still connected. Okay. Did you also have two levers to choose from? No, the island looked like a reflection of the first. Hmm...
Drake squinted into the darkness, examining both directions thoroughly. There was a single island up north, about as far away as the first. He couldn't see anything in the opposite direction, however.
Could it really be that easy?”
He walked to the northern lever and gave it a slight push. It refused to budge. So he wrapped both hands around it and applied all of his weight, which still accomplished nothing. Only after kicking it a few times did it finally relent. As soon as it snapped into position, a distant growl echoed through the cave.
What did you do? I pushed the lever, what else? And made the entire ground shake in the process. I didn't feel anything. Must have been too weak for a puny human to notice. Stop trying to insult me and go to the next island! I'd like to, but there's no path.
Drake let go off the lever, yet it remained in place. He stared it for a moment, then peered into the darkness. The sound he'd heard only moments ago had sent a shiver down his spine, so it seemed like a good idea to undo whatever damage he'd done. But the lever refused to be pulled back and was too close to the ground to be kicked again.
Dammit.” What is it? Nothing.
He walked towards the other lever and pushed it down without encountering any resistance.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

And here's chapter 16 of A Decaying World. It's relatively short with only 4k words, which is why I decided to continue with the next chapter instead of switchting back to Loop. That one might be a bit longer, but I doubt that it will go over 10k words. Which means that my plan of having 26 chapters overall will most likely fail. Not that it really matters.


 Chapter 16: Losing Control

Drake's slumped over figure rested in front of a pillar that a dozen enchanted ropes bound him to. He had been thrown into a small, dank chamber devoid of furniture. Its exit was located far above and inaccessible by normal means. Even a rope would have been insufficient as there was nothing to affix it to.
A rectangular section of the wall flared up, transforming it into a door made of stones. When it swung open, a tall elf dressed in white stepped through. A small clearing could be seen above his shoulder, but the walls wobbled when his feet touched the stones, swallowing the portal.
The elf raised his right hand and turned its palm skyward, conjuring a pea-sized ball of energy. It exploded from the inside out, doubling in size, continuously repeating the same motion until he could wrap his fingers around it.
“I'm ready.”
A ripple of energy tore through the walls as the elf aimed at the vampire, leaving a series of white concentric circles behind. They pulsed in anticipation as the elf let go, propelling the orb into the vampire's chest.
Drake's body reared up and his muscles spasmed as his consciousness was pulled from the darkness. He slammed his head into the pillar and let out a gut-wrenching scream as the sacred energy tore through his flesh, partially destroying the corruption within his blood. Repeatedly bombarding him with such power could have cleansed his vampirism, but the chances of surviving such therapy did not exist.
His screams echoed from wall to wall for an entire minute before his voice died down and his head dropped onto his chest. Fluttering eyelids unveiled a mixture of light and darkness coursing through his pupils, wrestling for control. His fingers twitched, his chest convulsed, and his flesh began to emit smoke, which caused the ropes around his body to glow.
“Why are you here?” said the Elf after pulling a chair out of thin air and planting his behind on its seat.
The vampire raised his shaking head, still unable to keep his eyes open. His mouth opened and closed, as if crunching something into a million pieces.
“Why”—the elf raised his hand and conjured yet another ball of sacred energy—“are you here?”
Drake's eyes open wide, as did his mouth. He shot forward, as far as his shackles would allow, and his flesh changed, fell in on itself, transformed into a mask of pure horror. Blackened, dripping, grotesque. Huge eyeballs atop an even wider mouth. Fangs so sharp they could have crushed a skull with ease.
The darkness dissolved when the orb of light penetrated the vampire's chest, revealing Drake's unchanged face. His head slammed into the pillar once more and an even louder scream fled his throat. Wisps of smoke followed the sound and turned solid upon coming into contact with the air, lashing out at the elf.
“Fool!” The elf vacated his seat as a dozen tentacles tore through it. He landed close to the wall and slammed his palm into the nearby circle before rolling away, evading yet another attack.
A deafening buzzing noise filled the room as a myriad orbs were disgorged from the walls. They honed in on Drake and spun around his screaming figure, dissolving the darkness and hiding his body from view.

Monday, September 15, 2014

And here's chapter 15 of A Decaying World. It could have gone a bit faster, but I've worked on another project a few days ago, where I ended up writing about 10K words in only three days. If only all my projects were progressing so fast...
Anyway, I'm going to return to Loop next. I've already had it lying around for too long without progressing the story. And I'm still going to release short stories during the next few weeks before I release the entire horror-collection.


 Chapter 15: Amidst the Ruins

A hundreds tiny grains of sand dug into Drake's skin like crystal shards, slowly rousing his dormant consciousness. His eyes fluttered open and fell upon two massive legs connected to a beast made of stone, a lapucuz. Its leathery tail entwined the vampire's chest, dragging him from the wreckage of his ship to a nearby forest.
Wha—” It was a mistake to open his mouth. A load of sand invaded his oral cavity, eliciting painful rattling coughs.
All motion came to a halt. The beast turned around, sluggishly moving one foot at a time, until half of its hideous face could be seen. One lidless eye focused on Drake while a giant mouth opened up, freeing the beast's snake-like tongue. It darted forward and connected with the vampire's skin, ramming a dozen tiny needles into his flesh.
Within seconds, he was paralyzed, incapable of offering any resistance. But his eyes were still open, able to take in his surroundings. He had never been on this continent, but the endless sea of trees and the giant one towering above them revealed that he had reached his destination, despite plunging into an icy grave.
Need a hand? Yeah, but not yours. Still defying me, after everything I've done for you? Modera might have crushed your mind if I hadn't pulled you back from the brink of despair! That doesn't mean I have to like you. Why don't you go back to sleep? No chance!
Another beast had joined the first, with Maximilian in its clutches. He was still unconscious, unaware of the sand cutting into his face. But it was only a matter of time until his skull would bang against the stones scattered across the forest floor.
So, who's going to save you now? Feyadal might still be out there. And if he's not? Are you just going to let them kill you? They could have done so a long time ago. Maybe they're using us to stock up on supplies. Why wait when we could be free within seconds?
There was no reason to wait, yet Drake refused to change his stance. He didn't want to depend on his inner darkness unless it was absolutely necessary. But when the beast could set him free, he should have been able to do so by himself.
He tried to close his eyes, but his captor's poison had frozen his lids in place. Even such a motion as simple as breathing was impossible. If the same applied to Maximilian, he might have already been dead. Good riddance. Fuck you!
Grasping the power trapped within his body, he tried to imagine a wave of energy surging through his body, dissipating the paralysis. A tingling sensation rippled through his flesh, but when it died down, only his fingers had come back to live. His arms were still trailing behind him, so the best he could have accomplished was to throw a fireball into the sky. A few more attempts might have done the trick, but both beasts stopped dead in their tracks, releasing fulminant roars from their cavernous bodies.
I could be mistaken”, said a squeaky voice from nearby, “but those creatures don't look edible at all.”
But we to them!” replied a much deeper, rumbling voice. Its owner seemed to have trouble using Meceruun's common tongue, as every sentence came in quick bursts and every T ended up sounding like a D. “Else they wouldn't grabbed those guys.”
The lapucuzs roared once more and raised their tails into the air, allowing Drake a glimpse of the newcomers, none of which were human. One could have been mistaken for a human child, if not for his sallow and wrinkled skin. A giant schnozzle was poking out of his face while the rest was covered by unkempt hair. The second creature was the complete opposite: tall, muscular, hairless, and dark-skinned. His four beefy arms could have easily crushed a human's skull.
Since the lapucuzs had no intention of letting fresh meat get away, they flung Maximilian and Drake into the sand and hurled themselves at the newcomers. The smaller creature, a gnome, shrieked and sped away, swirling up the earth beneath his feet. But his companion, a gialuk, was not inclined to take flight. He slammed his fists together, then pulled all arms back and propelled them forward. A shockwave rippled through the lapucuz's shell, partially rupturing it. But the impact hadn't been powerful enough to reach its fleshy bits.
It slammed into the gialuk and pushed him back, but the creature reacted quickly and rammed his feet into the earth, stopping their movement. A manic smile crept onto his face as he slung his arms around the lapucuz's body, lifting the beast from its feet.
Knowing that it couldn't land a direct hit, the lapucuz opened its mouth. Its poison was powerful enough to take most creatures down, but even though gialuk's aren't the brightest of creatures, this one was quite crafty. He threw the lapucuz into the air, grabbed its tongue wit its upper arms, and began to spin the beast like a lariat.
You like that?” yelled the gialuk derisively. “Or do you want down?”
The lapucuz screamed and snapped, as if trying to bite off its own tongue, but there was nothing it could do. And then the gialuk let go, sending it off into the sky. It ascended in a wide arc and them came hurtling down like a comet, audibly taking at least half a dozen trees with it.
The gialuk laughed and stretched his limbs just as the gnome came back, screeching for help. The second lapucuz was close on his heels, rolling through the sand like a cannonball.
Get behind!” bellowed the gialuk as he twisted his body halfway to the right. Then he pulled back his arms, taking a big swing. If timed correctly, the lapucuz's momentum could be used to smash through its shell, maybe even strike it down with a single move. But if the gialuk screwed up … well, it wouldn't be pretty. The lapucuz was moving too fast to be stopped like the first.
The gnome reached his companion and grabbed onto his burly legs as he slithered over the earth. When it came to a halt, it peered over a mountain of muscles at the rapidly approaching threat.
You got this?” asked the gnome, not quite as loud this time.
I do!”
The gialuk concentrated, focusing all power into his right arms. Any other member of his clan would have sidestepped the attack, but Gorn was more than confident in his abilities. He would not lose to a mindless beast that had to coat itself with stones to survive.
Moments before impact, his arms shot forward and time seemed to freeze. Neither did his fists penetrate the lapucuz's shell, nor was he squashed. Then, a crack appeared, followed by another, and then another.
The lapucuz screamed in agony and flew off, cutting a swath into the forest. Gorn smiled at this glorious sight, spread his arms, and let out a mighty roar. His companion chimed in, despite sounding like a broken whistle.
Drake would have been thankful for the rescue, but the gialuk gathered him and Maximilian from the sand and slung them roughly over his shoulders while the gnome stared at them with a watering mouth.
Their captors might have changed, but their fate was still the same.

Thursday, August 28, 2014 least not until you've written a lot of other stories and have improved your skills, so that you can go back and revise your old works with a new perspective on all its flaws.

I myself made that mistake, and while I never wanted to go back to my first story, I'm still sitting at it again, still trying to improve upon what I wrote almost a year ago. But it will never be perfect, as I would have to revise almost everything from the third chapter on and excise an entire character. Sure, it could be worth it, but the story was just an experiment and even based on a character that I didn't create, so I lack the incentive to go through all the trouble.

But if you find yourself in a smiliar situation, it might be best to either let the story rest or simply write it from scratch, as the second version can only turn out to be better than the first. You can try to revise it of course, but you might spent more time on fixing a written story than if you were to simply start anew.

So don't make the same mistake I made, no matter how excited you are about having turned your thoughts into an actual story. Just write, and write, and write, until you think that've you reached a point where you can actually publish something worth reading.
Have I myself reached that point yet? Maybe, but there's still a lot to be improved upon.

But whatever the case, I'm going to start releasing my short stories on Amazon soon, followed by my horror collection. Since the latter contains the former, there's really no point in purchasing them one by one. I just want to increase my visibility.

I still have two stories lying around that won't be included, but while one of them might be publishable, the other is not, as I haven't even looked at it after writing it down.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

At the moment, I'm trying to finish up my horror collection to release something once again, but I really didn't want to spend all my time on it. But I also didn't want to write the next iteration of Loop before I could fully concentrate on the story. So I did something different and simply wrote the next chapter of a Decaying World! That was only possible because it was so short, though. The next chapters will most likebly be longer, although not as long as the final chapters of the first half. At least not at first.


Chapter 14: Across the Sea

Somewhere, in the middle of the ocean, a small vessel was trapped within the grasp of nature. The wind howled like a banshee, swooping down onto the ship, spurring on the ocean. Gargantuan waves crashed against wood, pulling and pushing it in every direction. It creaked and groaned and burst apart, not able to withstand the nature of this storm.
Barely visible figures scuttled across the planks, running and jumping and slipping, doing their best to keep what was left of their transport afloat. But it was a battle they couldn't win. What crew they had was either trapped below deck or had already met the kings of the underworld. Only a handful were still participating in their futile struggle.
A lightning bolt emerged from the cloud that was following them—a cloud so dark that it rivaled the night sky—and it ripped through the main mast, nearly toppling it over. The lone sailor who had held his position in the crow's nest screamed in terror, but it was too late. He was grabbed by a gust of wind so strong that it might as well have been the hand of a titan, and was plunged into the depths, certain to meet the planks head-on.
Cat-like eyes fell upon his flesh, alerted by his screams, and a blurry figure jumped into the sky, catching him moments before his rendezvous with death and laying him to rest in a corner from where he wouldn't meet his end, at least for the next few seconds.
T-t-t-t-t-thank you ….” stammered the man, but his savior had already disappeared.
Another lightning bolt cut through the main mast, snapping it in half. It cracked and lurched, slowly descending onto deck, but two people sped below where it would fall, raising their swords into the air.
A snake made of light and darkness coiled itself around the mast's wood, embracing it like a lover, then destroying it with the force of a supernova. A hole was blown into the deck, but the damage was acceptable. Having a spear made of wood crash into it would have resulted in the imminent destruction of the vessel.
Are we anywhere near the continent?” yelled Maximilian over the raging storm, swallowing raindrops that burned in his throat.
I didn't see anything the last time I checked,” replied Drake, shielding his face from the onslaught of the chaos. “I'll have another look, as long as we still have a mast left.”
Then he jumped into the air and grabbed onto the ladder placed on the outside of the mast. Under normal circumstances, he might have been able to jump all the way to the top, but he hadn't regained his full strength since the destruction of Arlington. And there was no telling where the storm would have pushed the ship by the time he would have arrived at the top.
They'd been in the middle of nowhere for more than a month now—a journey that they began about a week after his encounter with Assar. Most of the trip had been a breeze, until bad memories came surging back to haunt the vampire. The storm that was chasing them was the same that had destroyed his hometown, that had taken his girlfriend from him. It might have been acting its part this time, but a mere glimpse was all it took for Drake to see through the charade. If they stopped for even a moment, time would come to a halt, then loop, then end forever. And if he was trapped within, then everything was lost.
Fucking liar! You said you'd give me time!” grumbled Drake through gritted teeth while he ascended the final rungs.
The ship groaned and screamed once more, precariously falling, almost toppling over. The vampire stumbled sideways, nearly vacating his vantage point the moment he had reached it. Only his strong grip made him keep his position. Not that falling would have mattered. When he peered into the distance, there was nothing to be seen. Just an endless chaos of waves, all of which were focused on their vessel, no matter how little sense their movement made.
Gazing down, he saw Feyadal wrestling with the steering wheel. They'd lost the captain right at the start, had to watch him get burned to ash, and lightning had struck that same spot on a multitude of occasions since then. I'm surprised the wheel itself hasn't been destroyed yet. Are you still toying with me, Assar? Why not get it over with?
A demonic scream filled the air, and a gust of wind as powerful as a hammer slammed into Drake's vantage point, hurtling him backwards and onto the planks, exactly the way he had fallen from Modera's tower after his fateful encounter.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

I've found a couple of Betareaders for A Decaying World, but only one of them has given me feedback as of yet, and only up to chapter 1. But if he continues to provide the same amount of feedback, then it would almost be as good as having an editor. I've already deleted one of the prologues and shuffled a few things around to add anything that might be missing.
Apart from that, I've started working on Loop, my scifi novella. The game it's based on is about an hour long, so it shouldn't get too big, which is why I'm not going to post the complete story, except for the first beginning. Not much is happening yet, but it should give you an idea of what it is about.
Don't forget that this is only a first draft. A lot might change later on. And I have no idea why the last story kept its indents and this doesn't.



A deep and steady humming noise reverberated throughout the metal chamber, its source somewhere in the depths of the facility. A red light spread across the wall-sized monitor at the front, until it had enveloped the dome displayed on its surface. At the same time, an egg-shaped structure in the center of the room began to glow, almost blinding the chamber's occupants.
Status report!” bellowed a middle-aged man with brown hair from in front of the monitor.
The Chronoshield is running at full power and the Reversal Engine is at fifty percent. There are slight fluctuations in the energy flow”—the speaker, a young man with azure-colored hair, moved his fingers across a touchpad, adjusting dozens of values within seconds—“but they're gone now!”
Professor Visan, start the countdown!”
An old man with pointy ears and graying-hair entered a command into the console in front of him. The humming grew even louder and the room began to shake.
Temporal reversal in ten,” a robotic voice echoed through the room, its source the loudspeakers embedded in the walls, “nine, eight, seven, six, five ...”
The occupants of the room, some dressed in white gowns, others in full-body armor, turned towards the egg-shaped construct. Its light was pulsing in the rhythm of the countdown, slowly transforming from blinding white to bluish black.
And when the timer reached zero, a wave of energy rippled through the room, knocking everyone from their feet. The humming turned into a shrill squealing noise and was instantly joined by the screams of the room's occupants. The walls shimmered and undulated, flesh and clothing became translucent, people were moving back and forth, the light grew dim and bright ... and then everything came crashing down.
The room fell silent as every living being vanished from within. And then it was enveloped by darkness, making it impossible to see anything.

Monday, August 4, 2014

This version is outdated.
Please buy the published edition to support me.

Spam up your Life

Spam Mails

> SmexyHexy (18) has sent you a message!
> Wanna last longer in bed?
> Too short? We've got the solution!

Spam, spam, and even more spam. It's the same shit every day.
How do these fuckers get my address every time?”
I took a sip from my coke and deleted all but one mail from my inbox. It was getting worse again, even though I'd changed my address not long ago. I didn't participate in sweepstakes, had no personal contacts over mail, used an alternate address for all accounts, so how did they still find me? Do the providers themselves sell me out because I refuse to take them up on their bullshit offers?
Wouldn't surprise me ….”
My stomach grumbled and I slammed my hands onto the wheels of my wheelchair, hurriedly whirling around. I hated being paralyzed, not only because of my inability to walk, but also because I couldn't control my bladder and bowel movements. All because of one son of a bitch who thought that he could take a call while driving his truck through a narrow street ….

Sunday, August 3, 2014


I've finally finished the first revision of A Decaying World, and although there's certainly more that could be changed (as I've seen by doing a second revision of the first three chapters) I don't see any point in going through all of it again without some input.

So I need some betareaders!
The book is 134k words long (spread over 13 chapters and some interludes) and includes graphic descriptions of violence and even torture. If that's not your cup of tea, then you'd better refrain from writing me. The book does contain humor and other light-hearted moments, though.

The book does not tell the entire story of A Decaying World, however, as it has grown much longer than expected. It does have a grand finale, though. As well as a cliffhanger that I could omit, but that'd be kinda boring.

~I am the Harbinger of Destruction and it is my fault that all of creation has perished~

A Decaying World tells the story of Drake, a young man who gets pulled into a cosmic game against his will. And it seems that he has already failed.
But the forces that have set everything into motion give him one more chance, and so the Wheel of Fate begins to turn once more.

Follow Drake on the first part of his journey through the realm of humans, through a vast desert, through ruins of an ancient civilization, until he will ultimately be confronted with a harrowing truth.

If you're interested, comment below or send me a message through the contact form.
I can send you the story in a word, pdf, or mobi file.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

After I spent a few more days on revising my horror stories (and creating a new cover for Carcerus, which some might have already noticed) I've finally gotten back to A Decaying World. Only took me two more days to finish Chapter 11, although I'm still going to do another pass with the text-to-speech feature of yWriter, since it can be really helpful in determining if the text actually sounds good.

When I'm done with that, I'll have about 24k words left to go through. It might be fast, might be slow, depends on how much I get stuck on the combat. That's what I really hated about chapter 11. So wish me luck!

I really want to get the novel to betareaders, so that I can determine if there are any big flaws that still need to be taken care of, which is also why I might begin writting another novella while it's being looked at.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Hello guys, girls and whoever else has found their way onto my blog. I've finished another short story today (although it's more of a ritual than a story) but I will not post here. The same applies to all remaining short stories that will be included in my horror anthology. And yes, I know that the actual term would be collection, but I think anthology sounds better.

Anyway, with that done I will start editing A Decaying World tomorrow. I'm sure other writers would have advised me to let it rest for a month or so, but I simply can't wait that long. And I'm such a perfectionist that I will go over it multiple times anyway. Just have to find some beta-readers before the editing is done.
I did find someone for my short stories, though, and I'll have to read some other stories in exchange. But that won't take much of my time.

So yeah, I hope that I can release the book in the near future. I don't want to start the second part before the first is released. If anything I will write more short stories or begin working on the adaptation of my scifi-"movie" Loop.

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Since I finished Neal Stephenson's Reamde earlier today (after starting it about half a year ago) I wanted to write a small article about exposition. It might not be one of my strongest suits, but I'm just getting started and have a lot to learn, whereas Neal Stephenson should know better. I've never read any of his other novels, though, therefore I cannot say if all of them are like Reamde or not.

Neal Stephenson

Anyway, it's nice to have a certain amount of exposition in a story, since it gives readers a glimpse into how your world works, how it looks, how your characters became who they are and so on. My stories might be a little bit lacking in that regard, but that amount of exposition is still better than what Reamde threw at me.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Hello guys, girls and whoever might read this!
I just wanted to give you a little status update on the newest chapter of Mortaevum, since I barely post anything else on here. But I'm also busy writing reviews on my german blog, so that does get in the way of any meaningful updates. I do post these on Twitter quite often, though. I switch from German to English all the time, but it's mostly English now.
So if you're interested in these updates it would be good to follow me on Twitter.

Anyway, since chapter 11, which is titled "Defying the Prophecy", is the finale of the current story arc I want to make it the best I can, although there will certainly be changes when I get around to rewriting the draft. The chapter is a bit over 10K words now and since the final battle is still not in progress it might turn out to be the longest chapter yet. Nothing wrong with that, of course, especially for the finale.

The one after that will be shorter, though, although I'm not sure if it will be very short or just normal. Depends on how much I want to set up the next story arc. But I'm already looking forward to the reactions for these final chapters, although there won't be many of those yet.

That's it, for now. The next posting will most likely be the chapter itself.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

I've learned this lesson years ago while working on my games and it still holds true today. Of course it doesn't mean that you should make everything up as you go along. That way you only end up with a nonsensical mess that you need to fix durig the editing phase, unless you're actually so good that everything connects flawlessly.

You need to know how the story begins and how it ends. And it can't hurt to know a few events that will happen down the road. Everything else can be nothing more than a general idea that you flesh out while writing it. Seeing as Mortaevum was a game first I had nearly everything laid out before me but it's just not fulfilling to keep to a strict plan. If you have an interesting idea that might make for a better story, then write it down! That's exactly what I did with the current chapter. I essentially skipped a few events that happened in the game because they simply aren't interesting nor essential. Of course I had to incorporate some of the events that happened during these scenes into the current chapter but if it leads to a better story it's certainly worth it.

Don't plan everything from the get-go! And even if you do, deviate from your plans if you get better ideas!

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Seriously, do not try to be perfect! You'll just waste countless hours of your life. You don't know how much time I spent working on my blogs even though most of the changes will never be seen by anyone. I'm also writing reviews on my other (german) blog and everytime I link to one of the reviews I can't help myself and have to look over it one more time, which often leads to at least a few changes.

Why am I telling you this? Because I'm doing it again! Someone is drawing book covers for me and I thought it might be a good idea to go over Don't Play With Slenderman once more before I release it with a new cover...and now I've started rewriting entire passages as I simply didn't like the old ones anymore. I've added about 1000 new words in the process and drew half of the eight pages a second time to make them look somewhat better while keeping them amateurish.
Of course it can't hurt to have a more polished version at hand but I'm sure I would keep finding flaws every time I read it. But people aren't perfect. Most of them will never write a masterpiece, especially not while working on their first book. You can hire an editor if you can afford it but do you really want to work on the same story over and over again till it appears to be perfect enough to be published?
I certainly don't want to do that. So I'm just going to fix it up, add the new cover, publish it once more and that's it! Otherwise I'll never be able to finish Mortaevum and I care too much about the story to let it die a second time.

Don't try to be perfect! Learn from your mistakes and create something better the next time. You'll never be able to get anything done if you go back over and over again to fix everything you've ever made!

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Sorry Julia, there's no new chapter here :D

Anyway, I remembered a situation from my first game tonight which really didn't make much sense and came out of nowhere. I retconned certain aspects of the world in the third game, not really thinking about how it would affect this specific situation as I had mostly forgotten about it, but strangely enough it makes total sense now.

Don't be afraid of retconning your story

Many people would assume that retcons are inherently bad and that an author should plan his story from start to finish to avoid using them, but it really depends on how the retcon fits into the overall picture. In my example it adds another layer to it without directly contradiction the events of the game. That's not to say that there aren't issues with it but that's to be expected for something that I made up as went along. I'm still surprised how well it all fit together in the end.

So let me use another example: Metal Gear Solid, one of my favorite game franchises.
The antagonist in the first games is Big Boss, leader of Outer Heaven and Zanzibar Land, and he threatens the world with his nuclear equipped Metal Gears. So he's evil, right? Just look at him!

Many years later Hideo Kojima released Metal Gear Solid 3, starring Naked Snake aka Big Boss! That game's ending as well as the subsequent games in the Big Boss Saga shed light on why he "turned evil" without directly contradiction previous events. It doesn't excuse how he tried to accomplish his goals but it still made sense. That's what I'd call a good retcon.

Of course there are also bad retcons of varying degrees. One of the worst ones would be to bring a character back from the dead even though he quite obviously died. You need to come up with a really good explanation to turn this into a good retcon.

Let me use Metal Gear Solid 1 to demonstrate a bad one:

In this game Solid Snake claims that Big Boss told him that he was his father during their final encounter in Zanzibar Land, but I've played Metal Gear 2 and he says no such thing, nor does he ever imply anything like that. It's not too bad of a retcon but still contradicts established events and this wouldn't be the last time Hideo Kojima changed the series' history. I still like it though and look forward to the next game, which might finally show us the moment Big Boss "turns evil".

Don't be afraid to retcon your story, but make sure to add another layer to it instead of directly contradiction prior events. Of course you can have a few bad retcons here and there but be wary not to turn your story into a total mess that makes absolutely no sense!