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Amblygon

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Writing Related

  • Writing History
    "Novels" since 2005ish
  • Beta Reader?
    Depends/other. Send me a PM
  1. I don't want to start with anything too crazy so I'm going to pledge 5k. Good luck everyone! 😄
  2. Amblygon

    Hello!

    Hello and welcome! I hope you enjoy your time at Worldsmyths! Good luck with law school and writing - it can be a pain but it can be made to work! I'm a lawyer (in the UK though) and sadly I can only report that it's pretty tough when you start working too... But the challenges here are very good and the Million Word Challenge was very helpful for my writing last year so I definitely recommend joining it!
  3. Amblygon

    What are you reading? [2019]

    I really liked that series too! It's been ages since I read them though - I forgot/didn't realise there were annoying points like that. If I re-read it, I might skim read too! My partner and I decided to read physical books for the Christmas break but I never got round to mine because I got sucked into a sci-fi trilogy that I only had as e-books (oops). Anyway, I finally read the paperback that I bought (which was Prince of Thorns by Mark Lawrence) and I'm just about to finish book two in that trilogy which is King of Thorns. I have to say that I think this series has really surpassed my expectations! I found the beginning of book one quite annoying (and I've read one of his other books Prince of Fools which I thought was okay but I wasn't entirely satisfied with it), but as I got further into book one, I found it a lot more interesting, and I think book two is even better! He's really managed to develop the character (which was something lacking in the first book which I found annoying). Anyway - I definitely recommend it to anyone who likes dark fantasy/grimdark. Which reminds me that I really wanted to start a thread to discuss grimdark... Need to try to do that this weekend (right after I kick off the search for book two for our reading club!!!).
  4. Amblygon

    Daydreaming, Stories, and You

    This is such an interesting topic! I used to daydream a lot when I was a teenager - I could become anyone, have any kind of story going on in my head. Even with people around me, I could just keep a (mostly) poker face and have the best adventures. And now... I don't really know what changed, but now I struggle to put myself in someone else's shoes. I do daydream a lot about things I could be doing, but very little about people who could potentially be characters for fantasy books. It's very frustrating - don't know how I can get it back! (Now I rely on actual dreams for inspiration - seems to be the only time when I can be someone else.)
  5. Amblygon

    2019 Goals and Resolutions

    Happy New Year! Very inspirational goals everyone - I hope you experience a lot of joy and success in your endeavours to meet those goals! 2019 Writing Goals Become a writer This may sound like a strange goal - I mean what exactly qualifies one as a writer? I'm going to start with the idea that a writer is someone who writes and it's an integral part of who they are. However, this goal is linked to a book my partner recently read on habits (called Atomic Habits for anyone who's interested) and one of the key messages was that if we want to change a habit or set a goal (e.g. write more, get a certain job, lose weight, quit smoking, etc.), it helps to think of that thing as a part of who you are (e.g. become a writer, become a person who does that particular job, become a healthier person, become a non-smoker). That's probably not the best way of explaining it, but basically we respond better if we think about it as a part of us (for example, apparently we're more likely to succeed if we think about it as becoming a healthier person versus I want to lose 20 kg). Obviously you still need to have sub-goals to help with the practical aspect of meeting your overall goal (e.g. identifying small changes in habits that will help you reach that bigger goal). I've yet to identify my sub-goals for my goal of becoming a writer. I'm hesitant about setting a particular frequency for writing sessions, but I think that's the best way. Maybe something like write once a week (any day, whatever length of time) and then maybe increase that. I think a key part of this goal is also to start submitting things, but before I can do that, I think it would be super important to start participating in the review of other work. I'm guilty of not really reading other work posted here so this year I want to play more of an active role and starting commenting on other people's work. I think it'll help me with my writing as well, plus I'm hoping it'll generate some goodwill so that if I ever post anything it might get a comment or two or I might even find a writing buddy. 2019 Life Goals Specific gym goals in terms of weights and reps and stuff (won't bore anyone with those) Set up a schedule for re-acquainting myself with some (or all?) of the languages I studied in school/university Do well in my new job (which starts on Monday - eeee)
  6. Amblygon

    What are you reading? [2019]

    I'm reading Record of a Spaceborn Few by Becky Chambers. It's the third book in a sci-fi series where the books are only loosely connected. I bought the third book by accident thinking that it was a standalone and couldn't return it so thought I'd give the series a go - I was pleasantly surprised! I've loved all the books, and I'm almost done with this third one and love it as well. They're quite slow so I can see why people might not like them, but the characters are so strong and the world is so real that I'm okay with the slower pace. I think many scenes are very subtle, but also very profound. Not sure what I'm going to read next. My Goodreads Want to Read list has over 200 books, but nothing is catching my attention at the moment (anyone else with a list that they keep adding to without actually intending to read all of it??). My partner is reading Brandon Sanderson's Skyward so I might continue the sci-fi streak if he finishes it quickly so that I can pick it up!
  7. Amblygon

    Recent Updates (and related wonkiness)

    Do you think it would be good to delete the accounts of people who haven't logged in for over 100 days/posted for over 200 days? I think it's better not to delete, but to keep an inactive group. I joined a graphics forum a long time ago and then forgot about it for a few years and then went back to it and it was nice to see that my account still existed. I don't think there's necessarily anything wrong with deleting, but might come across as a bit passive-aggressive? There's no member list on this software; would you be curious to see our active Members vs Newbies vs Inactive and Purge members now that they've been sorted based on activity? Sure - could be interesting! But I wouldn't be upset if there wasn't a member list. Currently Newbies cannot see inside the Brainstorming subforum and can't post their own topics (but can reply to topics) in the Feedback subforum until they're auto-promoted at 15 content items posted. Currently they can see anything posted in the Library, but we could change that. This is to provide a little buffer where new members have to participate in the community a little before they can access members' personal story ideas and before they can request specific feedback on their work. [And sub-questions] I like the idea that new members need to post at least 15 posts to be able to post their own work in the Library or request Feedback. When we were on the previous forum, I saw at least one person go directly to requesting feedback and thought to myself how did they ever think they were going to be noticed if they didn't give back to the community? It just seems a bit arrogant to me to join a forum for discussion fantasy and the first thing you do is go and post your own work and request feedback without participating in anything else or offering feedback to other people. I think Newbie Friendly Library is a bit overkill as you mentioned. Ideally people won't stay in that group for very long and it's not that difficult to post 15 posts. I think my preference would be to allow a guest view/replying to existing topics/Library submissions for Newbies. I think the forum would come across as more open and inviting if people are at least allowed to look around when they sign up. Maybe when the forum gets really popular and there's a reputation and people feel like it's worth waiting to post 15 things to be able to see the Library, it could be worth considering. However, at the moment I feel like the downsides (turning off people, making it too difficult to see what's happening, etc) outweigh the positives (protecting people's ideas, etc). I quite like the idea of people having to review something before they can post their own content in the Library. It's not a big ask - you don't need to write a thesis on someone's work. However, I do get that some people would find it annoying and that it be frustrating to have to wait to be promoted and could potentially put people off. But it really encourages people to think about giving feedback in addition to getting feedback. If people don't give feedback, then nobody gets feedback. Is there a way to make it so that the promotion happens automatically when people post a reply in the feedback forum and/or library? Also as a counter-argument, can someone really be that desperate to post your work that you can't wait until the next day to be promoted? How do the new Feedback / Beta Reading forms and guidelines look? Anything you would recommend changing or adding? They look good to me. Although maybe it's just me, but I don't understand why the Seeking Beta is the main text for the Forms topic and then there are links to offering to be a beta, seeking writing buddy and seeking feedback - they're quite easy to miss (I almost missed them). (Also it took me a while to figure out what it means to click through the pages...still so many things to learn about the new forum!) Purge of the Feedback forum at the first of the year, archiving old threads and essentially re-surveying members to see who's actively willing to be a beta reader/provide feedback. This is what we have at the moment as our best means of determining our beta reader population. I think a purge sounds like a good idea and a survey also sounds like a good idea. Do you think it would be possible to add some more options to the beta reader survey? E.g. I could probably volunteer to be a high-level beta reader who shares general thoughts on characters/plot/flow, but I don't have time to read proofread or do extensive consistency checks. Or maybe we could have "depends on length", "depends on sub-genre" as options? I know it won't be good to have too many options and people should cover these off in their beta reading profile anyway, but just throwing out some ideas.
  8. Amblygon

    Post NaNo Plans?

    Congrats to everyone who participated! No matter what you ended up writing (or how much you ended up writing) I think there's always something you can learn from NaNo. (: I didn't hit my word goal either, but to be fair, I didn't really know what my word goal was. Originally 50,000, but then I kind of forgot I was on holiday for the first two weeks of November and then I got ill and then there was a moment of false hope when I wrote almost 9k in a day and thought I could do that for a few days, but then I realised I should probably just aim for 25,000, but I just hit 20,000 and that's going to be NaNo for this year (it's 23:41 here). I want to continue writing - this my second re-write of this story and I think it's a lot better now. I'm really trying to focus on having strong scenes and not writing anything useless just for padding, so I think I'll take it slow and steady. Maybe try to write 2,000-4,000 words per weekend over December/January (with a break for Christmas). I think I'm also going to edit the first and/or second chapters to maybe get some feedback at some point! It would be great to read what other people have written this year! Maybe we could do a thread where people share a bite-size chunk in a spoiler? 😄 Ooh forgot to say - @Jedi Knight Muse - maybe you could try something like what Trudi Canavan did with Thief's Magic? In the first book, the two main stories seem completely separate (at least they did to me when I read them) and they're only connected at the very end of the first book (someone correct me if I'm wrong - it's been ages since I read this book and I've only read the first two in the trilogy). I think we have a number of Canavan fans so I'm sure they'd be able to share more details if you're interested!
  9. Amblygon

    What are you currently reading [2018]?

    @Penguinball- I really enjoyed all the books you mentioned! I'm a big fan of Scott Lynch's Gentleman Bastard series (for people who don't know, Red Seas Under Red Skies is the second book in the series - it's a really fun series set in a Venice-inspired world and it's all about thieves and trickery). I was also veeery impressed by N.K. Jemisin's Broken Earth trilogy (although I thought the first book was the best - will be keen to hear what you think of the third!). And... I actually just finished reading V.E. Schwab's Shades of Magic series (starts with A Darker Shade of Magic) - also keen to hear what you think of that! I'm currently reading The Poppy War by R.F. Kuang (it's dark fantasy inspired by China's history and culture). I found the beginning super interesting and hard to put down (it starts with an underdog in an elite military school for people who like stories like that!), but then it hit a kind of weird point and my progress has slowed. My opinion of it will definitely depend on how well the ending is pulled off (although as I checked the author's name I saw it's a trilogy so we'll see how many threads are wrapped up...).
  10. Amblygon

    New Forum Feedback

    I haven't had a chance to play around with anything or look further than this thread and the one thread I was mentioned in (love the tag/mention feature!) - but my initial reaction is that it looks awesome!
  11. Amblygon

    Club Ideas

    Awesome - yes, I'm happy to run another book club. I could start the process this weekend! Last time around we took in suggestions and then made a poll and the book with the most votes won. A writing workshop sounds really cool! Also, maybe some kind of analysis club and/or Brandon Sanderson club where we talk about a particular author's work (or just Brandon Sanderson's work <3) and analyse in depth to help us develop our own writing by learning from existing published material? Just an idea!
  12. Amblygon

    NaNoWriMo Week Three Word Counts: November 18th - 24th

    12,081 *cries* I'm still going to write today, but I think I'm living in denial because I still think I could theoreticlaly hit 50k by next Friday...
  13. Amblygon

    Site Upgrade Announcement!

    Amazing! It looks really great - I can't wait until it's up and running! If you're interested in any forum banners, let me know - I'd be happy to contribute one (or however many you're looking for).
  14. I am veeery behind. :D I managed to write 2,400 ish words on 2 November when I was on the plane having just started my holiday and I naively thought that I would have time to write while I was on holiday... Well, today was the second day that I wrote and I'm now at 4,100 ish. I've never been this behind with NaNo so I have no idea what to expect! How are you all doing? Has anyone ever hit 50,000 after starting very late?
  15. Amblygon

    Important: Forum/Discord Feedback Needed

    Just wanted to drop in to say I'd be happy to continue the book club by organising our second book if people are interested (although I propose we wait for NaNo to be over). Also, I wanted to point out that the book club is an ongoing thing so you can join in the discussion for the previous book(s) at any time (although right now we've only got one book). In case the existence of a Book Club is news to you, I've got the link to the sub-forum here and you can find the intro thread to our first book, A Wizard of Earthsea, here.
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