Thursday, August 12, 2010

What's Next

Minor spoilers ahead if you haven't read Part Two.

This project started as a prose story that didn't have an outline, turned into a screenplay (finished, but not very good I think), then into a prose novel from the omniscient POV. This latter petered out in Act II because I couldn't maintain my own momentum. So I went back and started over, to tell the story as a single perspective, which I must say works much better for me. Of course it limits what can be told, but the other advantages more than make up for it.

The reasons for writing this have changed too. It started with my fascination for the idea of the masks and what it meant for society to wear them in public, and have video archived of everything that happens. This technical fascination is not the best way to generate characters, however, and it took me a while to reach that conclusion. Over the span of time it took to write the existing stuff, I also started a research project on the topic of survival of complex systems. Interestingly, no one else seems to care about this topic, so I seem to have it to myself. (See this paper on Arxiv). Many of the concepts in the reworked story incorporate this research, such as "Am I Me?" tests from the first part.

What's next is a short story penned by Calli, scratching her creative itch. It's related to Shanghai, who we met in Part two, and directly concerns the character Jumbo calls Ingrid. Most of this will be pulled straight from existing material and reworked, so the 14 kiloword (or so) story will appear pretty soon. Probably within a week.

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