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Archive for October, 2011

Ready, set, WRITE!

I blogged at the beginning of the week about writing for 4 days straight, as my full-time job, and “seeing what we see.” To tell you the truth, I wasn’t sure what to expect. Writers’ Block? Distracted by games? Forced to barricade the windows to prepare for the zombie apocalypse?

When my wife read that blog post and she said something insightful – I’ll paraphrase. She said I shouldn’t try to estimate what I could do based upon what full-time writers produce. Since writing is their job, they were essentially running a marathon. They had the luxury of pacing themselves, because they knew they had time to finish – many more days at the typewriter to get stuff done.

And I am in a different position. Starting in less that 12 hours, I go back to the job that pays the bills. I’m not running a marathon when I write – there is no pace car. Instead, I’m running a sprint. I had 4 days to meet my goal and then writing time becomes uncertain and staggered.

A sprint. I liked her analogy. If you are like me, and writing isn’t your full-time job (but it’s your full-time passion), you may find yourself in a sprinting position from time to time. And you may ask yourself: Can I sprint? How many words is “too many,” as I hear some writers warn? What if block hits me?

Well, I tried my best to push fear of block or other distractions from my mind. I just sat at my laptop and wrote. And wrote. And then wrote some more. Knowing I was in a sprinting mode helped a ton and I was able to produce. Here’s the results:

Day1: ~9,500 words

Day2: ~7,000 words

Day3: ~6,000 words

Day4: ~10,000 words + a finished draft 1

To be honest, once I started with the end, it was like spotting that finish line. I always get a burst at the end, and I spent about 10 hours writing today. Tired but happy! Babylon is certainly on the way now! One more edit, then the wife gets it… she’ll filter out some garbage before the 2nd circle tears it to shreds. A few edits later, it’ll be with my editor and out the door! I was hoping to get it out before the holidays, as everyone likes to buy books on their new kindles in Jan/Feb. Not sure that’s possible, but we’ll see what we can do.

Plourde, OUT!

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Mad Minute Matt

In the spirit of Mad Minute Math (in which a student is given a piece of paper to turn over and answer all the math problems s/he can within 60 seconds),  can you complete all these questions about Matt instead?

Ready…Set…GO:

1. What are Matt’s muses?

2. What does Matt want you to take away from his stories?

3. Who is Matt’s favorite character and why?

Final question: how did you do?

Visit the following link to get all the answers and learn so much more:

A great big gold star/thanks to Bill Jones, Jr. at This Page Intentionally Blank for featuring Matt on his blog.

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The Great Experiment!

Here we go!!

I’ve been writing with the intent to create a novel (or many) for 10+ years. However, I’ve also been a working-man in the world of technology for longer than that span. So, in case you aren’t keeping score: I have held down a day job for my entire writing ‘career.’ And while nothing has changed on that front, I am trying something new this week: I’m making writing my full-time job for 4 days.

Yeah, last year I tried something similar as I took a vacation to North Carolina to write/relax… I did get some writing done, but I also played games and lounged at the beach. This time, it’s 4 days of writing and we’ll see what we see at the end of it all.

I’ve heard some other writers (the ones who can afford to make writing their career) talk about how they only write for a few hours a day. Supposedly, the creative mind can only be tapped “lightly” each day (for most). I’ll test my reservoir of raw creation and let y’all know if I become worn down, can’t write or wander into the land of games (must resist). The goal is to treat this experiment like a professional and finish the first draft of Babylon.

We shall see.

Words of encouragement/jeers/naked pics of you? Feel free to post them below. Off I go!

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Sharing the road…

Another early sketch (pre-coloring, duh) for the graphic novel. Lex and Father C, sharing the road:

Artwork by Andres Cornejo, all rights reserved.

As a novelist, script-writing wasn’t exactly in my bag of tricks. I had to do some extensive research (10 minutes on Google) to figure it all out. Even though all the material is there (300+ pages of prose), it’s in the wrong format for a graphic novel/movie. Of course, there is plenty of debate on what format works best for a graphic novel script, but my artist has been doing just fine with a format like this (WordPress removed some of my tabbing, so use your imagination). I’ve found 3-5 panels per page to work the best:

Pages x-x

New Characters:

[pics, descriptions]

Page x

Panel 1     description. blah blah blah

CHARACTER NAME

dialogue

Panel 2     description. blah blah blah

CHARACTER NAME

dialogue

CHARACTER NAME

dialogue

… and so on.

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A Tower will rise…

Oh nelly, it’s really happening!

Babylon, the follow-up to Eden, will have it’s first-ish draft done in 2 weeks. I am taking the rest of my vacation time to finish it and there’s no stopping me now! (I say “ish” because the manuscript has been the victim of stops & starts, so it’s quite a polished 1st draft)

Sorry about the radio silence – I’m still deciding what to do with this blog. For now, I think it best I leave it to announcements and updates and we’ll go from there. Just as “a soul without aim loses itself” (Father Callahan, Eden… or, Michel de Montaigne depending on who you ask), so too — a blog without purpose gets lost. For now, updates!

And we certainly do have a treat today. The first bit of artwork for Babylon is rolling off the presses from the incomparable Axel Torvenius. I’ll be hounding my #2 for a trailer soonish. You saw Erzulie in Eden’s trailer, expect another leading lady for Babylon. For now, let’s start at the start:

Artwork by Axel Torvenius, all rights reserved. Babylon by Matthew C. Plourde

(this post brought to you from the shittiest hotel internet connection I’ve ever suffered behind)

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