>Day 10: Music and a Video (and not dead yet)

>I haven’t fallen off the planet yet, I promise. I’ve been behind, as I’m sure you’ve noticed by my word count, but I’m working on it. Tonight, I’ve been listening to music. Articology, mostly. Then someone from the ML chat room (Thanks, Aquadeo) linked me to this beautiful video. I wanted to share it with you, because I found it soothing and inspiring at the same time.

I’ve skipped ahead a bit in my novel, since the part I was in was dragging, and it’s moving smoothly again. In spite of myself, I think there’s a romance blooming between Senator Eric Nathan Mason (yes, that’s his full name, and I don’t know why I know that, only that I do. I usually don’t bother with middle names). I didn’t want there to be a romance – while the merfolk society is bisexual, I didn’t want that to be even of peripheral importance. I sense a possible love triangle here. ITt seems that the relationships will be more important than I meant them to be.
I’m pleased, though, it means the characters are coming alive, moreso than they have been previously. The week two slump may yet be defeated before the week is over. πŸ™‚

>Day 7: Even more behind, but a NEW COMPUTER

>Well, I didn’t catch up today like I’d planned. But I have a good excuse; I know own a new computer. NOt only a new computer, but a whole new operating system!

That’s right, I’ve purchased a new iMac. And it is wonderful on a scale I can’t quite describe. It’s taking a lot of getting used to, though, so it’s delayed my writing. I’ve installed scrivener, although I plan to run a virtual machine so I can continue with liquid story binder, scrivener’s giving a free trial, so I’ll see which I like better.
I’ve done so much running around today between setting up the new computer, church, and doing laundry that I’ve run out of hours in the day. But now I’m feeling motivated, so I want to write, write, write!
Only problem is, I’m not sure where to go. I’ve got my girls in a hotel room, where Elisande will get a little more acclimated with the human world, but after that? Just how DO you go from the Atlantic to the Capitol Building?
I’m inclined to have her fortuitously discover a congressman in the park. But that would be a bit too easy. I dunno. I need to do something.

>Day 3: Making progress

>It’s slow, and slowed by the fact that I’m having to work on the site more hours than normal because of load times, but it’s moving along. I’ve spent the morning working on site-related things, and running @NaNoWordSprints.

Unfortunately, though, I’m feeling terribly unmotivated to write. I’m going to catch up tomorrow, I think. I got a few hundred words, but I’m not feeling this scene. I might skip ahead to the Dramatic Stuff.

>Day 2: The society evolves

>Okay, so before now, I’ve had this very vague idea of the merfolk society. I knew that males weren’t fully humanoid, and were more like sea lions than fish or humans. I also knew they were “inferior” to the females. I swear this wasn’t some repressed thing. It’s just how the dream was. πŸ˜‰

Well, apparently without a lack of opposite-sex intellectual equals, mermaids have essentially become bisexual. They mate with the males for procreation, but often form romantic relationships with their “sisters.” Family bonds are not strong; mothers are called “matria” but most young, male or female, are raised in a communal creche.
The society lives in magically-shielded cities under the ocean. In the past, this has been fine, but as humanity’s technology improves, it’s getting harder to keep them away. The breaking point is coming; eventually they won’t be able to hide anymore. There are cities worldwide, but it looks like the one off the American eastern coast is going to be the first to break the silence. When a pod of males is captured and taken aboard a commercial research vessel, the MC is sent to free them.
She does – spectacularly. So the silence is broken.
She and another mer will be sent to the mainland to try and broker peace, or else. The queen is pissed off, and not really interested in peace, only retribution, so time is limited.
And that’s all I’ve got. I do know that negotiations will be unsuccessful, and war will result. After that… who knows? Maybe the merfolk will take over the US. πŸ˜‰ Maybe there’ll be a rebel alliance.
Oh, and I have a Senator from somewhere named Mason. And the MC’s best friend/sometimes lover is Aria, the land-spy.

>Day 1 – Trials and tribulations

>Well, any of you who are frequent visitors to the NaNoWriMo website know it’s down. Down something *fierce*. This wasn’t as much of a problem last year, but we are experiencing record-breaking totals… at one point, we had over 16,000 people online at once.

It’s just as frustrating for us as it is for you. The good news is, the tech team is on it,and working hard to get things back on track. Specialists have been called in, and things will work. We promise! In the mean time, write your novels, and hit that word count goal! I did a 15 minute word war with NaNoLanta and got 687 – I think I can manage to get 1667 today. It’s funny, you’d think I’d write when the sites are down, but I worry so much about catching up on modding I don’t. I write better when I don’t have 50-something posts in the abuse queue. πŸ˜‰
I did get a rousing good first page or so on my novel. An impressive opening scene with water knocking over secret service agents. I think we’ve got something here. πŸ™‚
I got on the site long enough to post an excerpt. I also have it on very good authority that Liquid Story Binder will again be offered at a discount this November. Check it out from my sidebar over there… it’s what I use to write my novels, and I can’t sing its praises enough. Super flexible, bit of a learning curve, but worth taking the time for. It’ll adjust itself to how YOU work – it doesn’t require you to change how you do things.

>So what are you writing this year?

I’ve finally gotten my idea. I had a dream (which is where most of my story ideas come from. Mortuus Rex came from a dream) that fascinated me. It involved a mermaid, addressing Congress, demanding recognition as a sentient species, protection of “human” rights for all sentients, and demanding the cessation of unlawful experimentation on the males of her species in private corporate research.

And an idea was born.
I’ve been working on the idea in my head, and I’ve got a few points; I don’t know how I’m going to get to that scene (for starters, I have no idea how in the world random Person gets to address Congress) but I know now that this mermaid will either escape from a corporate research facility, or break into one in an attempt to free her mate. I haven’t decided which.
Mermaids will be very Amazonian; matriarchal society, warlike, and the purpose of my MC’s trip to Capitol Hill will be to attempt to prevent war from breaking out. Before you start laughing about the idea of a primarily water-based race waging war on the US, think for a moment: what happens when your sea-traffic is disrupted? International trade would be affected, attacks on ports could be catastrophic for local economies, and widespread enough attacks would wreak havoc on the national economy. I could really have fun with it. In fact, just now I thought it would be awesome if I had her attempt to convince Congress to intervene fail initially, war to start (just so I can show just how much trouble a sea-bound race could cause) and they then decide to sit up and listen.
I’ve been researching on TV Tropes for ideas and tropes (warning, DO NOT click that link unless you’re ready to wikiwalk… TV Tropes steals hours from my day on a regular basis) and I’ve decided a few things; I think my mermaids will be mammalian, which means no scales… which is kinda sucky, because my working title is Scales of Justice. Le sigh. I am accepting ideas for a new title, by the way. I’m thinking a more dolphin based mer-person.
I do know that I don’t want the males to be strictly humanoid. Originally, I’d planned for them to be vaguely sea lion-ish, but given that I might want them to be dolphinoid, I might go with that. Or maybe the idea of a non-humanoid male might be a bit too squicky, so I might just go with traditional mermen.
I’m also playing around with the idea of the females having to go ashore to give birth in human form, which might solve the mermaid problem (TV Tropes warning). I think the primary setting will be Chesapeake Bay; the mermaid will be able to swim up the Potomac for the entrance into Washington DC. I think. I need to check my map for that.
I did have an incredibly generous artist from the NaNo Artisans forum make me a cover for my novel; it’s really quite pretty. Simple, and I love the color. The Artisans have offered to make the staff covers, since we don’t qualify for 30 Covers, 30 Days, so we miss out on the chance to get awesome covers made. They’ve really made some beautiful covers… be sure and check it out!