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I Love You Please Don’t Die

August 05, 2008 Author: Anthony Pacheco Category: Characterization, The Craft  1 Comment

Here’s one way your story can get bloated: start either identifying with or sympathizing with your characters, and then start to like them. Then if you don’t like them, appreciate their vileness. And if their vileness is too vile to be appreciated, then appreciate the fact that they are either a dark mirror to the protagonist or a light-absorbing example of how low one can sink.

Becoming enamored of your pretend people after a certain level of detail and setting poufs the page count to heights better left looked at, not ascended. As a firm believer in the “less is more” theory, this is the literary equivalent of drug addiction. You now have character addiction.

Character addiction is insidious and painful. Painful because while self-editing you start to chip and cut into their existence because the story is drifting. Lord help this now wounded thought-soul when a real editor gets your work. Now one of your creation is externally tortured. It hardly is fair and it certainly is not sporting.

And then, then… then you realize, this person is going to die because it is not just your characters which seem to live and breathe, but the actual story itself. The story is moving in a direction that bodes ill for your thought person. Now my beloveds are in peril, and I feel helpless to save them. One of them dies and I am left with a melancholy that hovers over me like the ocean mist on a spring morning. The mist might burn off, or it might just rain.

Limitations

August 04, 2008 Author: Anthony Pacheco Category: The Craft  2 Comments

Limitations

Silently we cross the carpet, my small hand in hers
The viewing is a window of nothing, he looks
Like a caricature of a statue based on a painting of a photo

“That doesn’t look like him, really.”
A sigh. “No, it doesn’t it.”
“Didn’t he want to be pushed out to sea on a boat shot with burning arrows?”
She smiles. “There’s no limits to our thoughts. We can picture that as if it happened.”

I look at her. “You sound like him.”
“I was his muse. He was inspiring. Perhaps I should be more now, no?”
“Maybe if we push him out to sea, I would not miss him so much.”
“No,” she whisperers, “I think that we’d be missing him more… we’d miss him more.”

She finally cries

Dripping Dark Sequins Like Bitter Tears of Love

August 03, 2008 Author: Anthony Pacheco Category: The Craft  3 Comments

Many people have the talent to write, but not many have the ability to do so. Our educational system, even with its faults, makes writers. They may not be literary geniuses, but they have the ability to translate thoughts into words to make a coherent story. This writing may not be enjoyable, but it is writing.

The ability to write flows from within, much like a burning passion that bursts forth in a carnal onslaught, like two lovers ripping off their clothes in an unquenchable desire to get at the flesh beneath. This passion translates into sitting down and writing. A pause in the writing is just a refractory period. Soon the writer is back at The Craft.

I point this out because talent is separate from ability. Writing, like music, is very personable, blood, flesh, and thoughts making written words. Other people may not like to read these words. These words may not meet a threshold of talent. In actuality, they most likely do not meet the literary standards for a person making a purchasing decision to purchase your words.

This circles back to raw, unmitigated passion. I write for my friends and The Wife Unit. Someday I will even write for my children. Even if this small circle did not like my stories, then I would simply write for myself, for I could not ignore the ability to make a story.

This is all a fancy way of saying I can crank out the words but I may be an insipid hack. I would like to brood on this, but the characters in my story, like favored lovers, beckon me. Consider it a warning. I can write two books in six months, but you might not want to read them.

Delerium – Just a Dream

August 03, 2008 Author: Anthony Pacheco Category: Atmosphere  0 Comments

Walking barefoot on the shore
Hypnotized by the ocean roaring
Thoughts of you drifting in and out
Never fails to calm me down

I still see your eyes when light hits the water
And I’ve never seen a color so beautiful
So blue… Ocean blue

I keep moving to the distant sounds
And visions of you drifting in and out
Clouds mixing with the sand and the sea
Sounds get carried on the ocean breeze

I still hear your voice from across the horizon
And wasn’t that you walking into the shadows?

In time I’ll believe it was just and illusion
In time I’ll believe it was only a dream

I still see your eyes when light hits the water
And I’ve never seen a color so beautiful
I still hear your voice from across the horizon
And wasn’t that you walking into the shadows?

In time I’ll believe it was just and illusion
In time I’ll believe it was only a dream
Till then I will breathe you in from the ocean
And walk with the waves rolling under my feet

Brutal

August 02, 2008 Author: Anthony Pacheco Category: The Craft, The Wife Unit  1 Comment

There is a chapter in Bunny Trouble that is action packed and filled with Conflict Goodness. Bad people do bad things and get their asses handed to them by the good guys. It is glorious and a corner of my brain would like to think if Tom Clancy ever read it, he would go “ooh rah!” Sometimes the Good Guys have to win. They just have to win.

It is also brutal. I finished the chapter and had to get up and go outside for some fresh air and reflection. I have written some disturbing things before but this was ugly. Several times I have contemplated deleting the chapter and moving the book in a slightly different direction.

It comes to this: if I do not want The Wife Unit to read it, then I just cannot have it as part of the story, and I am not too sure my wife would want to read something like that. Did I mention it was brutal?

After some soul searching, I have decided to keep it. In the chapter, I introduce a minor character, someone just above plot convenience and slightly below ‘give me more of that person please.’ Without intending it, this character says a few things that sum up the premise of the book plot in a sneaky way and makes the entire chapter necessary: not so much to move the plot along but to justify the entire book theme. Thus, what comes next is a validation of the entire Bunny Trouble series of books. How could I delete that? I cannot. It was like a gift from the Literary Plot Producing Gods. You will be reading book two and go “well shit I should have seen that coming.”

Therefore, what do I do with The Wife Unit? If I have to leave the chapter in, I just have to deal with the consequences that she and some of my friends will just quit reading the book and come kick my ass for wasting their time putting emotional investment into characters they do not wish to read about anymore, even though they won against Evil.

In the end, I am gambling that The Wife Unit and my friends would want me to be true to myself and true to my story. Bad things happen to good people. This is the reality of the world in which we live. No one, including myself, wants to read about these bad things in the course of entertainment if the book does not bring any value to the table. Thus, I have to trust myself that I am bringing value. That long after you put the entertaining book down; you are thinking thoughts of a deep and meaningful nature. One of the best books I have ever read, I felt like I received the end of a literary sledgehammer, the ending of the book actually had me feeling vaguely ill. There are no regrets in the reading, for in the end it was a story of a love between a father and a son that said so very much on what it really means to have such a relationship.

I used to think writing was easy. I wish I could travel back in time and kick my younger self in the ass. “No it’s not easy. You just have not started writing yet.”

Coffee Shop Armageddon

August 01, 2008 Author: Anthony Pacheco Category: The Craft, The Wife Unit  1 Comment

If you were wondering (and even if you were not), here’s what it means to be a writer. On a hot hot summer day:

heatherpa [1:42 PM]:
  Are those barista boobs at the coffee shop really necessary?
‎‎Tony [1:42 PM]:
  I am so getting coffee after work.
heatherpa [1:43 PM]:
  /smack

A normal man (let’s leave off the ultra-cool fact that my wife will point out Epic Breasts for me to gaze at), would drive to the coffee shop, do his leering, and putter on home.

Noooooooo. Not I. What I did was go to the coffee shop and look around the parking lot, in which my mind, for reasons on its own, formulated a book. Indeed, I envisioned an epic book about the next American Civil War. Starting right there. Right in the very spot I was parked in.

Thus, my leering wasn’t terribly productive. I spent the entire week resisting the urge to put Bunny Trouble aside and work on this story. The desire faded to a controllable burn, akin to something between indigestion and a morning erection.

This happens to me every day.

Be careful what you wish for, the road to Hell is paved with creativity.

IM Conversation with The Wife Unit

August 01, 2008 Author: Anthony Pacheco Category: The Wife Unit  0 Comments

heatherpa [9:26 AM]:
  so when are you going to explain Bunny trouble on your blog?
  Gibbers me muh book!
‎‎Tony [9:27 AM]:
  Ha ha the book is not done yet
  I guess I should edit the first book and print it for you
heatherpa [9:29 AM]:
  um yes b/c I’ll be done with my other books in no time at this rate %)

My wife and her lusty desire for good reading material. I am doomed.

What’s that about?

August 01, 2008 Author: Anthony Pacheco Category: The Craft  1 Comment

What’s that about you ask? A book? About what?

I love writing. At work, it’s all research and specifications. At home however, it’s pure fiction, Baby. Science Fiction. The kind that sneaks up on you.

You can get the gist of the book theme by taking a look at my blogroll and the graphic on top of this blog. Other than that, ah… no. Newp. Uh-uh. Unless you show up where I am standing and say “Gibbors me mah book!”, you, sadly, have to wait for it.