dacha, the literary funeral

As previously mentioned, I killed a character and abruptly had trouble writing again. I kill a lot of characters. The path my literary endeavors have taken me on has been littered with bodies of fictional friends and enemies. I don’t usually have this problem writing, and I’m not sure why it’s bothering me now.

So to commemorate Dacha, and perhaps to gain some ‘closure’ (I don’t really believe in the concept myself, but what’s the harm?), I thought I would write her a eulogy.

Dacha was a remarkable woman, impressive in girth and skill. She may not have had the qualifications to present a heroic figure, but she fared well as a secondary character. She made my hero uncomfortable for her own amusement, worked with my heroine to protect and help her, and littered my book with pieces of colorful, if course, dialog.

Such phrases included:

“… You know, that’s almost scarier than me naked.”

“Weapon? Oh, honey, I don’t need a weapon. All I have to do is sit on you and fart. You won’t be getting up again, I promise.”

“Aha! Dickless, spineless, and brainless! … He must think with his stomach.”

“Sure I’m a lady! I’ve got the teats to prove it and everything!”

Rest in peace, Dacha. You died victorious, and were avenged swiftly. And your loss made my test readers cry aloud: a dozen outraged, horrified gasps of, “No, not Dacha!” disturbed the air of the library reading room that night.

Until the third draft, my friend.

dacha’s revenge

I just killed a character. And now I’ve been having a terrible time trying to write.

I really liked the character. But it was time for her to go. I had a situation where it would have been nearly impossible for all three characters to escape from, and this particular woman would have broken a later plot at the end of the chapter. I killed her well, without needing to stretch events to set her up. No ‘I’ll hold them off!’ lines (instant death in almost any genre). It set me up for a great fight scene between a scary-as-hell spearman and my hero.

And I’ve written twenty words on Blue Crystal in the last three days. Like a ghost in a haunted house, I can’t seem to leave that scene.

50%!

As of last night, I reached 47,533 words. 50% of my projected length. Woot!

That said, I had an idea that again deviates from my intended storyline, but sounded very good last night. This morning I remembered the idea, and promptly felt sick. Oh, it works. But it’s dark, even for me.

This has happened before. I lay down to sleep and my mind races. I see dialog, chapter layouts, characters dancing in my head as I lay there, and when I’ve been especially productive it can last for hours. But when I wake, I realize that these 2-a.m. thoughts are always rock-lodged-in-your-gut disturbing or melodramatic.

Anyone else think their judgment is skewed by early hours? Or is it just me?

dead, dead, dead

I’ve decided on starting ‘Blue Crystal’ that no character was going to be safe. My first chapter starts with a dead character, and two more die in a gang-style fight on the way up to the surface. There’s talk of a plague that had killed a percentage of the working class population, and at the end of the second chapter my main character comes close to dying of the same plague.

I’ve just finished the end of the fifth chapter of my first draft, and I’ve killed the first of my important characters. Funny thing was, I wasn’t expecting it. In the 0-draft he made it through to the end and wasn’t particularly important.