Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Novel Report

First, before I forget -- I now have a Twitter page. Silly, yeah -- but kind of fun, and why not?

I have a dull life, of course, but it's fun to drop a few lines there during the day while I work.

And speaking of work....

Badlands is still moving ahead at a nice 2k a day or so clip. I am considering a huge cultural change in the background, but I am getting the plotline and basics cleaned up in this version. After that, I'll put it aside again and continue to think about the work of rewriting the story into a different cultural background. It might work. I have to wait and see. I've been testing out different ideas for the change, and none of them appeal to me as much as the original Hispanic references and the gang groups. They work for this novel, and they are (as mentioned in the book itself) a moderated version of the gangs back on Mother Earth.

Draw the Line has finally reached 80,000 words. I find this kind of surprising because it felt like it wasn't moving at all at its little 500 words a day. Things are happening in the story now that I have focused on plot again, and not just on getting those 500 words written. I am looking at the larger picture, and creating a situation that is far beyond what I had originally planned. I was most of the way into the trouble when I realized that it just was not enough to carry the story. And then I realized it was a great set up for something far worse. It's wonderful how it all fell in together, too.

So here is a short little snip from Draw the Line, and the humans explaining a few things about humans to one of the Kasa. (Who, I think, are about to become Ksa. I accidentally typed that the other day, and think it looks better for an alien race. And a reminder that due to facial structure, the Kasa cannot say the letters b, p, and m -- though sometimes they sneak into my typing anyway.)

"The Kasa will take Rafael into our care if the humans feel they 'ust leave the station," he said. "We will hold here as 'est we can."

"We aren't going to jump ship just yet," Ardhi said.

"Jum' shi'?"

"Leave in a hurry during danger," Ardhi said. "It's an old Earth term from the nautical -- from the the sea-faring days. Sometimes it referred to leaving a ship without permission when in port."

Etinon nodded and apparently filed that information away for future use. Morgan wondered what the Kasa thought of their sayings. That last one said a great deal about them, after all. Leave at a time of danger. Abandon duty.

Only it was not true of them as a species.

"If the situation becomes one where we think that our presence will make more of a problem than our leaving, then we might leave," Morgan said, drawing his attention. "If it looks as though the Norishi might try to kill us all, we will go. There is no honor in dying without a good reason. We'll fight back, but we are mostly scientists and not warriors. We will save our information, retreat from the trouble, and come back when it is safer."

"You would come 'ack?" Etinon said. "Even if the Norishi is still here?"

"If we thought it was safe to be with them," Ardhi said. "And if we didn't, we might find that we would remove the Norishi first."

Etinon started to say something. He stopped. "You think you could re'ove the Norishi."

"You would be surprised at what humans can do," Neva said and looked up at him. "There is something about our nature that you might not understand. We are also extremely territorial. We believe that once we have settled somewhere, it is ours. This appears to be hardwired, and it allows us to believe we are home wherever we settle for a length of time. And we defend our homes."

"Ah. Ah." He looked from one to the other, then glanced back at Rafe. "The Norishi are dangerous."

"So are we," Neva said. The words seemed to give her strength and she stood. "I need false information to feed to the Norishi spy. Let's come up with something inventive to tell her."

"We can fake the call of a ship coming in," Ardhi said. He tapped his comm. "If she has direct contact with the other Norishi, we might be able to scare them into backing off."
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