Science Fiction, Babylon Style!

Science Fiction, Babylon Style!

There are times when ideas come along that just feel inspired. Then there are times when you think, “this is something I really should do because it sounds awesome in concept.” Those are the kind of ideas that you know readers will appreciate, provided you can do them justice! Otherwise, they’ll just sit on the shelf (or your Documents folder) and gather dust. The following list of ideas sort of straddle these two categories.

They came to me while researching ancient Mesopotamian myths that remain a part of our culture today. In fact, many of the myths that are considered to be foundational to western culture trace their roots to the “land between two rivers” (between the Euphrates and Tigris rivers). Here are the ideas I was mulling over after reading up on some ancient myths.

Continue reading “Science Fiction, Babylon Style!”

NaNoWriMo 2012: A Requiem

tome-of-undeadNovember is finally coming to an end and December is now upon us, which means the following things. It’s time to get the snow gear out, people who have grown mustaches for Movember can finally shave, and NaNoWriMo is officially over. For those who took part in it this year, my congratulations. For those who finished on time, my profound congratulations and respect. As for me, I started, stopped, and then started again. It seems this November I had a bout of temperamental inspiration which led to a weird outcome.

Originally, I wasn’t going to participate, seeing as how I had just finished work on my zombie apocalypse story known as Whiskey Delta. That took me at least a week into the month of November and I kind of felt burnt. Yet at the same time, I was rearing to go on production of the sequel and even got some encouragement to do so. Didn’t seem like a good time to take on another writing assignment. But then I was struck by an idea about the lives of future people who lived in an Arcology, a concept I’d been wanting to tackle for some time.

After coming up with a name – Etemenanki, the name of the Ziggarut that is believed to have inspired the Babel myth – I set to work. However, my passion soon faltered as I realized the idea was not well thought out, and the burden of having to write 2000 words a day sapped my inspiration further. I realized what I wanted to be writing was the sequel to Whiskey Delta – aka. Pappa Zulu – so I shut down Etemenanki and got to work on that instead.

But then I noticed that at NaNo website, you can easily change which story you’re working on by simply changing the title on your entry and resubmitting its basic data. Nowhere, except on the word count feature, does it keep track of the story itself. So I figured, what the hey? I changed the entry name to Pappa Zulu, and began submitting my chapter for it instead of chapters for Etemenanki, and the month of November proceeded. Granted, I lost a lot of time thanks to my starting and stopping, but at least I enjoyed it this way.

As of today, my final word count on Pappa Zulu is 27265 words in length, roughly half of what it needed to be to complete the challenge in time. Ah well, so sad. Better luck next year. By that time, I hope to have my act together on what I plan to write, to start on time, and not change my mind partway through. This is why they say not to change paddles in midstream, you know 😉

NaNoWriMo 2012!

Yeah, it seems I’ve decided to actually take part this year. It was a bit of a dilemma as to whether or not I would be participating, what with my heavy editing schedule and all the promises I’ve made to follow up Whiskey Delta with its sequel. But wouldn’t you know it, while in the midst of a rather hectic day – the kids were absolute nightmares and it was pool day to boot! – I actually came up with an idea. In addition, I somehow found the time to belt out an outline and the first 500 words for it. I’m nuts, I know!

And truth be told, it kind of solves a few writing goals I’ve had for myself of late. First off, I’ve been dying to write about an Arcology ever since I did a post dedicated to the concept. And ever since I finished with Whiskey Delta, I’ve been looking for the next serial novel project. Originally, I had hoped to move right into the second installment in that series, but I think it would be best to let that percolate for awhile (my apologies to the fans who were expecting it sooner). And finally, I really wanted to contribute something.

As I’ve planned it, this new story ought to cover all three of those bases. The story I plan to write will take place within an Arcology, specifically an Ultima-tower type structure located in the Great Lakes Megapolis region of the future. As a massive structure that dominates the landscape, it is an entirely self-sufficient and ecologically sustainable environment surrounded by sprawling slums. The name of the place, and hence the story, is Etemenanki, the ancient ziggurat that may have inspired the Tower of Babel myth.

Over the course of November, I’ll be publishing chapters on a regular basis, much as I did with Whiskey Delta. Hopefully, I can keep up with the daily writing demand, especially since I’m getting a bit of a late start! Stay tuned for more on this front. Go NaNoWriMos!