breakinglight11: (Default)


The free-to-play browser game I write for, Susurrus: Season of Tides has had its first update since our debut!

Susurrus: Season of Tides, the free-to-play browser based story game I write for, has had its first post-release update!

New Content in This Release:

Nyx the bartender.
If you're stuck and could use some direction, or just want to know what interesting things are going on, head to the Giant's Dance and talk to Nyx, the friendly neighborhood bartender there. She knows a little bit about just about everything that’s going on right now.

News tab. As the city cycles turn, new quests and things to do emerge across the city. Click on the News tab to see reports of what locations have new adventures available to play.

New companion. There's some thorny business with some local psychics that could net you a new companion. Explore old ground with your Mind and Heart temperaments very open and see what comes of it…

Ask for the Secret Menu. Cosmic Coffee's secret menu is now available, offering a variety of stat-enhancing and healing artisan coffee blends specifically crafted for the magical community!

More from The Harbinger. They've reappeared in a few extra places, leaving behind a handful of Glimmer and cryptic clues. Characters who diligently pursue anomalies will have a new conversation and a few hints toward upcoming plot.

COME PLAY, IT'S FUN. 😁
breakinglight11: (Default)
I completed the 31 Plays in 31 Days challenge for the sixth year in a row this past month!

I did it a little differently than I ever have before, but honestly I’ve been creeping toward this for several years now. Basically, I completed the challenge in July rather than in August, in order to get a play written earlier. These sprints to generate content are always most effective and efficient for me when I have outlines of what scenes I’d like to write. Because I knew I wanted to complete Mrs. Hawking part 4 this summer, but far enough in advance to have it edited to begin rehearsing in the fall, I didn’t want to be drafting it in August. So I did my outlining in June, drafted it in July, and editing was saved for August.

Part 4: Gilded Cages was in fact drafted, though I haven’t completely finished the editing for it. Most of what I posted for the challenge this month was from that first draft. But I ran into the problem, as I often do, that I wrote stuff that spoiled the ending of the piece and I didn’t want to just throw it out there. But that meant, in order to have something to post for all thirty-one days, I had to write new stuff. I suppose I could have just counted my credit privately, but I very much LIKE having something to show every day. And that made for a lot of extra writing work when I was busy, with editing, and with writing for my day job on Susurrus: Season of Tides, which honestly I could have done without.

I think the truth is, as [personal profile] inwaterwrit pointed out when I discussed it with her, that I’ve more or less outgrown this particular structure. The need to just generate scenes, content— regardless of what it is —is just not that important at this point in my writing. It’s more much important to use structures that facilitate the creation of larger works. I can sort of use 31P31D for that, as I did this month, but it comes along with certain problems— most obviously, the need to write extra stuff to fit the structure rather than just focusing on what I actually NEED to write.

I suppose I could just quit doing it… but I like having done it. I like the feeling of accomplishment, I like making lists of and analyzing everything I wrote, and I like having things to post on my blog. So I guess writing more— and having those scenes as groundwork for the future —is a small price to pay. And I had like six scenes drafted that were at least somewhat to very useable all ready for Gilded Cages because of previous 31P31D. Maybe I’ll stop doing it someday, but this was not that day.

To be continued in my analysis of what I wrote this time.
breakinglight11: (Default)
This scene really needs more wit and thought, but I pushed to finish. Any scene with Justin needs to be very witty and clever, but I'm too tired to labor over it. Still, I'm glad I got an idea for a scene with Justin in it. I love his character.

Finally, FINISHED! FOR THE SIXTH YEAR IN A ROW!

Day #31 - Enough to Compare )
breakinglight11: (Default)
This isn't from any particular place in the timeline. Just an attempt at a funny scene I pulled out of nowhere in my push to finish.

Day #30 - Out of Place )
breakinglight11: (Default)
Ugh. Garbage. Ill-thought out, context-free, with decisions made that shouldn’t be made until a thousand other things are figured out. But I got to finish the damn challenge. And I’ve arbitrarily decided this is the all-Hawking 31P31D, so I’m pulling out whatever I can think of.

Day #28 - Impasse )
breakinglight11: (Default)
A rough, somewhat vague scene. It's a stab at imagining something that would depend on a plot I know nothing about, the thrust of the story in Mrs. Hawking 5. But I am excited to think about how Clara would be pulled in to help out, particularly because Nathaniel's in danger and she's called upon to be the third man on the team (so to speak) in his absence.

Bah. I do not want to be generating more scenes right now. But I'm pretty much out of non-spoilery Gilded Cages scenes, and I can't bear not to fill out the challenge here on this blog.

I should do more with Mary and Clara. I want them to have a friendship too, but I've never had much of an opportunity to explore it.

Day #27 - Bravest Soul )
breakinglight11: (Default)
Blargh. This scene, which immediately follows Day #25 - "Act Tonight", is not working. The idea behind it is that Mrs. Hawking has come to sympathize, even identify, with this client Mrs. Khan (soon to be Mrs. Chaudhary) in the course of helping her, plus is in a self-reflective and melancholy mood due to thinking about the past. These are supposed to combine to make her more open and forthcoming than she usually is. However, the overwhelming consensus at the reading was that she was WAY TOO open and forthcoming to be in character, and after hearing that I agree. I need to find a way to get the information across here while pulling massively back to keep Mrs. Hawking believable, but I haven't undertaken that editing operation yet.

Blargh. I have five more of these to do and I think I'm out of Gilded Cages scenes I can post without excessive spoilers.

Day #26 - How Did You Come to Do This? )
breakinglight11: (Default)
As I said, I'm very close to running out of Gilded Cages scenes that are not excessively spoilery to post. But I've got writing for my game job to do this week, and of course I've got to actually edit the play for real. So I don't want to worry about writing new stuff for 31P31D right this second. So I'm just slamming down what remaining scene pieces I've got. For these last couple, the arcs may not be totally complete, but I'm just going to break them at the shifts that caused me to chunk them apart in the writing process in the first place.

Again, these scenes from the case need to be fixed up for logic and flow, but here's how they stood in draft one. Also, again, Mrs. Khan will be Mrs. Chaudhary to more accurate reflect the character's background.

Day #25 - Act Tonight )
breakinglight11: (Default)
I am almost out of postable scenes from Gilded Cages. This might be the last one. Even though there were thirty-nine separate scene pieces, some of them were more "connective tissue" between moments, and others were pieces I don't want to show yet for fear of spoiling the ending. So I've only only a couple remaining, and I'm probably going to have to write a few more new things just to round out the thirty-one days.

I'm showing some of the early scenes of the case of Gilded Cages, which definitely need some clarifying work. It starts in medias res, and deciding exactly what bit of information should be parceled on when needs some fixing. Also, I need to make it super clear that the issue discussed here between the women is "men suck and marriage is awful" rather than anything like, say, the client's religion or other things. With Mrs. Hawking, the issue is ALWAYS "men suck and marriage is awful," but I don't want any confusion on that point. 😁

Also, I'm changing Mrs. Khan's name to Mrs. Chaudhary, on the advice of several readers.

Day #24 - The Gang Case )
breakinglight11: (Default)
In trying to come up with what to post today, it struck me that despite going on and on, often in the text of the Hawking plays, about how important Nathaniel's relationship with the Colonel was to him, I'd never actually written any interaction between them. The closest I've ever come was a quick mention in what is thus far the only prose to exist of the main Hawking storyline— a short story I drafted about Nathaniel's falling for Clara during the time she was seeing Justin.

While version one of that piece is complete, I never finished editing that story, since other projects became more pressing. But it was an interesting experiment in telling other pieces of the story which will never be able to feature in the full-length plays. Not to mention a chance for me to practice my rather atrophied prose muscles, which are probably good for me to keep in practice, even though drama is my focus. I plan on sharing that story when it's finished, but it still needs a pretty serious editing pass before I do that.

I bring that up because I thought that brief moment mentioned in that story between Nathaniel and the Colonel might make a good focus for today's scene. Imagining exactly what their interactions were like is really useful to understanding how Nathaniel has the rosy impression of his uncle that he does, and giving context to how he remembers him.

On top of that, I like the small ways it's revealing of the Colonel. It's easy to see how Nathaniel doesn't realize what his uncle is communicating to him— as a self-centered kid in pain, he's not in a good place to be perceptive —but the Colonel offers a sympathy to his nephew's plight that speaks to what Reginald himself feels about what he's gone through.

Also, it's fun to imagine what a lovesick, nineteen-year-old Nathaniel was like. 😁

Day #23 - What a Man Can't Help )
breakinglight11: (Default)
I've been picking at this piece for a long time. I think I could possibly extend it into a full ten-minute play with some expanding and polishing, but I pushed myself to finish it just to have something to post today. It's from after Mary and Mrs. Hawking have their break, and Mary agrees to marry Arthur and go to America with him. This is from just before their wedding, a moment between Mary and Nathaniel, who is giving her away.

It's mostly fluff, about the bond between the two characters. Developing their friendship is important to me while keeping it platonic, and I like how a piece like this pays that off in a powerful way. Also, it's an exercise in dealing with one of the largest potential pitfalls of the whole series, how often everyone ends up talking about Mrs. Hawking. Here, it is DELIBERATELY AVOIDED by the characters' intention. But, because of the recent blowup she's a conspicuous and painful absence— she refuses to attend Mary's wedding —there are some slight allusions that I hope acknowledge the reality of the situation without centering her.

Last year's Day #25 - Wedding Toast would occur just after this.

Day #22 - Giving Away )
breakinglight11: (Default)
Just a tiny bit of scene immediately following Day #20 - Learning the Hard Way", after Elizabeth delivers a bite of a reality sandwich to Priyanka and Victoria. This is important for all that it is short. It reveals Victoria's decent intentions, but her inability to understand just how much more Priyanka is risking and stands to lose if their scheme fails. As for Priyanka, we see a little of the weight of her responsibility, and how she is manipulated by Victoria's blind confidence, not to mention the invocation of a mother she felt like she never knew as well as she wanted to. The hugeness of her need— to save her neighbors, to know and be worthy of her mother —is established very strongly, I believe, in these small moments.

Day #21 - Very Proud of You )
breakinglight11: (Default)
This scene follows immediately after Day #19 - "Rebellious Young Girls" as Elizabeth comes in. Though the true delineation of the "scene pieces" as I call them are when a new character enters or exits and changes the dynamic of what's going on, each one encapsulates a tiny arc that is begun and concluded with that change. I think every scene ought to have an arc, and the scene pieces within it a smaller one within that, which add up to the overall arc of the scene. I'll admit, my scene transitions are determined by practical means— I switch them only when the time of the interaction or the location changes —but it maintains a sense of domino-like progress throughout the entire play.

Day #20 - Learning the Hard Way )
breakinglight11: (Default)
A bit from the flashbacks of Gilded Cages. This scene builds upon a connection that is established in Day #15 - A Small Alliance.

A theme that was suggested to incorporate by Mara Elissa Palma and Naomi Ibatsitas, two lovely theater artists who consulted on the development of this plot line, was the concept of power differentials making it so that mothers of color often have to take jobs caring for white women's children to provide an income for their families, but at the expense of being present for their own kids. I thought that was very powerful and here is the greatest presence that idea manifests in Gilded Cages. I want to display the effects, even if it's not directly named here.

It's important that this series of events is what wakes up Priyanka (I know I will have to rename because that's a Hindu name rather than a Muslim one— I looked up "Bengali names" in my research, not "Muslim Bengali names" like I should have.) to the reality of the injustice of British occupation. Up to this point, she has been too young and too preoccupied with the struggles of daily living to fully recognize how unfair and impossible colonial presence is. But the events of this story is what really opens her eyes, and she is a different person, now bent not only on relief of suffering but on justice, thenceforth.

Day #19 - Rebellious Young Girls )
breakinglight11: (Default)
This I whipped together late the other night. It's a scene from the past, where the Colonel is confronted by his brother Ambrose. The idea came from thinking about how Ambrose likely heard through his society connections that his brother would be offered the knighthood, and be so delighted by that fact that when he heard Reginald turned it down, he would march over there and give him hell for it. It's very rough and banged out, but it's interesting to think about these things that shaped the events that actually featured in the text of the plays.

Day #18 - No Knights )
breakinglight11: (Default)
Governor Gareth Stanton— Mrs. Hawking's father —is a bit of a bugaboo in our story. We know she hates him, and in her opinion he was an awful man. We finally get to meet him in part 4, and see where this rage toward him came from.

Day #17 - Best Solution )
breakinglight11: (Default)
This is a small section, but it pushes Mary's story along a little. The two major concepts in this story are the consequences of history and the lack thereof, and communication versus silence. This is tied into how Mary is struggling against her lack of history and the inclination to silence of the people around her, but is having trouble pushing through. And since she's trying to talk about something difficult that she knows Mrs. H doesn't want to hear, it's hard for her to find the strength to make her voice heard.

Day #16 - Something Important to Tell You )
breakinglight11: (Default)
I've been at GenCon this week, promoting on our release of Susurrus: Season of Tides for my job at Evil Overlord Games. So I've been behind on releases scenes. But here's another from Gilded Cages while I endeavor to catch up.

As a side note, I recently realized that Priyanka is a Hindu extracted name, not one an Indian Muslim would be likely to have. So I'm going to have to change it for accuracy's sake, but I haven't decided what to go with yet.

Day #15 - A Small Alliance )
breakinglight11: (Default)
A major issue in Mrs. Hawking part 4 is Nathaniel finding out the Colonel was offered a knighthood that he turned down— and Mrs. Hawking never cared to learn why. Bernie and I discussed what that scene in the past must have looked like, and though it will likely never feature in any actual show, I thought it might be fun to explore for curiosity's sake.

A major thing people wonder about is what it must have been like in their home when they were married and living there together. He spent a lot of time abroad when he realized how little she wanted him around, but when he was there, things were... frosty. Quiet and stiff. We decided that due to her resentment, Mrs. Hawking developed a profound mental block when it came to all things related to him, a resistance to making any connection or taking any interest in him. And he lacked the tools to communicate directly with her enough to even try to address their issues.

Still, I could imagine him making occasional forays into getting her to talk to him about SOMETHING— in this case, what to do about this knighthood he felt so bad accepting. Here I tried to imagine what that conversation must have been like. To wit, mostly him attempting in his indirect way to solicit her thoughts, and her shutting him down at every turn without ever actually becoming aggressive or rude. At least not overtly.

Day #14 - All the More Reason )

Profile

breakinglight11: (Default)
breakinglight11

September 2017

S M T W T F S
      1 2
34567 8 9
1011121314 1516
17181920212223
24252627282930

Syndicate

RSS Atom

Most Popular Tags

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags
Page generated Sep. 20th, 2017 07:58 pm
Powered by Dreamwidth Studios