Thursday, February 5, 2015

Bad Fairy 2 status report: Chapters 10 through 12

So, as I mentioned last week, I jumped back into working on the next Bad Fairy book, and three more chapters have appeared. Technically I'd written part of Chapter 10 before I took my hiatus, and technically Chapter 12 is only partially written, but there's this incredibly heavy, terrifying scene I have to write next and I wasn't ready to tackle it at the time I opened the chapter. And as I'll explain further in a minute, I got pulled away from continuing for a good reason.

These were some fat chapters, though. And I'm still nibbling bits and pieces of the original Bad Fairy to clean them up for this book. Why completely rewrite the book if little gems from the 2005 version are still shiny?

Words: Chapters 10 through part of 12 came to 10,766 words. 

Basic details:  Delia decides to build a castle, builds said castle despite her mother's protests, throws herself into getting settled, celebrates her fifteenth birthday, and practices the most advanced magick known to her kind as a way of distracting herself from starting her true life's work: investigating the land of the dead.

The good: Delia had her friends over for her birthday party and I just love writing Fiona and Drake. Their interplay is so much fun, with Drake always giving Delia a hard time and Fiona scolding him, and Delia may be in her mid teens now but she still loves showing off like a little kid. I got to finally pull some elemental magick theory into the book--there's not much room for it in the plot so far, and people really seemed to connect to that stuff in the first book when she learned it in her studies--and Delia's mom continues to be a frustrating character who's nevertheless a joy to write as well. I love how she supports her daughter but finds her exasperating, and how this balancing act works into all their interactions. I also think I'm building up to some of the darkest stuff in the series and developing an appropriate level of anticipation for the reader.

The bad: I'm almost positive I spent too much time dragging out Delia's procrastination and maybe the castle tour she gives her friends. I'm historically awful with settings--my characters can sometimes seem like they're living in a vacuum--so I'm trying to really give the reader a sense of place here . . . and I'm probably going overboard, reading like one of those fantasy novelists who can't shut up about the scenery just because Delia is proud of it. After the whole castle thing, there's an entire (short) chapter devoted to Delia and her mom whining at each other, complete with nagging and disrespectful teenage bratface. It might make the pacing take a hit. Also, my lack of knowledge about pseudo-renaissance time periods is more than likely going to show big-time, even though a lot of the relative ease with which Delia can make a living is owed to her fairy powers.

The quotes:

Delia when her mom is trying to convince her that her choices are impractical:

“Why is it considered reasonable for me to throw myself against the wall over and over again while everyone tells me I should like the pain?”
Delia's mom on suggestions for festivities:

“I believe Delia would like to do the entertaining in her dining area—it is the only place so far that has sufficient light for a party.

“I like it dark, if you can believe that,” I said.

Youre joking,” said Drake.
Drake's opinion on a Water-themed room, which heavily featured mirrors:

I don’t suppose you like looking at yourself, do you Delia?” Drake stood in front of a mirror and watched the mirror behind him reflect his image back for infinity.

Mirrors are windows,” I said simply.

Oh really, because one might get the impression that you’re a teeny bit vain. 

When Delia's mother is upset because sometimes people think a witch lives in her castle, and accuses her of enjoying the creep factor, Delia replies:
“I wish you would stop implying that my life is about upsetting people just because I no longer care if what I want upsets them. I’m just so tired of trying to get others to see the light. The dark, I mean.”

But I haven't worked on the story since Sunday because, well, without going into detail, I found out a story I'd submitted to a special themed issue of a magazine was not selected for inclusion, and I decided I wanted to try again. The deadline's just days away, though, so it was a squeeze, but I did it. I wrote another short story so I can try one more time. I dove into the idea on Monday and got 1200 words down, and then on Tuesday I wrote the rest, totaling 7500 words.

The good news is that this story is way better than the other one I submitted. The bad news is I never thought I stood much of a chance getting in, so even a better story still probably won't be chosen. But I'm really jazzed about it and I love the story. And, even better, it features queer people in space, so there's that. AND it features a really cool gender-fluid character. AND I put an aromantic asexual person in it, which is something I have literally never done before. (Peculiar, right?) Now I kind of want to draw the characters. Maybe I'll work it into this month's So You Write.

Anyway, I'll finish fine-tuning that soon and submit it this weekend most likely, and I'll definitely be all about diving back into Bad Fairy then.

I have another short story idea but I'm kinda backing away from it because I don't think I can make it work. :X I'll think about it more. And as always, I'll keep my readers updated.  


  1. Whoaaa, you've written a lot. That's awesome :D I can kinda sympathize. My workshop class keeps taking time away from my novel writing; I keep jumping from my short stories to my novel, pausing a lot with the latter since the former has, lyk, deadlines. But my shorts are nowhere near 7,500 so I am totally jealous on that front (although if I did try to make them that long, my professor would probably strangle me for turning in anything past the required 3 pages. Damn restrictions >_>)

    Pacing is always so difficult to measure while diving into the first draft. But I'm sure it'll get fixed pretty well come editing ^.^ Glad to hear you had fun writing the character interactions too :D

    And I recognize the first dress up game! It's so cute. I kind of recognize the second one--I might have seen both on doll divine.
    As celebration for the 10k (almost 11k) more words of Bad Fairy, I used a Rinmaru Gamea dress-up to make Delia. Took me like ten years to pick the clothes cuz I don't know her style, but hopefully it's fine.

    Hope you like it ^-^

    1. Darn this whole "life interrupting our personal projects" thing!!!

      Yeah, 7500 words is the cap on a lot of short story markets, and sometimes it's even less than that, so it's seriously not something to be jealous of when it comes to short stories! Though for novels and just for output purposes it's nice to see those high numbers, I suppose. Makes you feel like you ~*~did~*~ something, even if later you're going to have to chop some stuff.

      I have over a hundred avatar-me thingies made on my Digital Swankivys page! I took some of my favorite ones and made characters too. I like the one you made! Adorable. And when it comes to Delia's clothes, she of course likes black/dark colors, but also the aesthetic tends toward the practical side of dramatic as well as elegant. :) (She's thrown a lot of herself into trying to get taken seriously, so once she was old enough to make her own decisions, she was dressing like an adult and trying to look Serious.)

      Thank you for making me a little giftie! It's so cool of you!