Saturday, October 17, 2020

October 2020 Update - The new Quest 2 and the short story stuff

Midway through October already! I got the Oculus Quest 2, and it is amazing. Text looks crisp and I can read my books in it clearly. But there is noticeable chromatic aberration on the edges. It's not too bad that it renders the headset useless. Anyways, I'm a happy virtual camper.

I'm still writing inside VR as well. It's my preferred mode in writing now. There is a planned feature by Oculus in the future that allows you to work in VR without needing a computer. This could be useful for writers who primarily write in Google Docs or some other cloud-based program. In my opinion, I'd still prefer writing on my laptop simply because it's faster. I imagine Google Docs straining to load a 300 page manuscript. The thought makes me shudder.

While letting the third novel simmer (it's actually overdue; I had set to work on it at the beginning of October--look at me now) I've been writing some short stories with the intent of sending them out to publishers. Comparing my older works with the newer ones is illuminating. One thing that stood out is pacing. There were areas where I'd dabble in beats that were unnecessary or were placed in the wrong sequence. The older works were written with the old method of outlining whereas the newer works with the new method. If I get my newer works published with a better success rate, that would mean that my new outline method is a success (at least for me, of course).

My only hang up now is actually submitting those short stories. I still have that feeling of hesitation, like I don't want to send them simply because a rejection is a sign that I'm not a good writer. Nonsense, you'd say, and I agree. But the rational mind is at odds with the emotional mind. Best policy, then, is no mind at all.

Here's to being mindless in October.

Also vote.


Thursday, September 10, 2020

September 2020 Update - Third novel is done (1st draft, at least)

So the third novel is done, 1st draft at least, so hurray! Now it's all about having it simmer for three weeks.

While that's stewing, I'm writing some short stories and sprucing up some old ones. While writing this novel, I had neglected sending out short stories every week. I'm back at it again, and I hope I'll stay consistent in sending out and selling some shorts.

I'm still writing in VR, and I can't go back. I can't stare at my laptop's screen. I can't write in my environment anymore (and it's a distracting environment, too). When I write, I have to put on my headset and let the flow state get to me quick. I do find myself getting into the flow of things quicker in VR. I'll have to write up a blogpost on that one, let folks know about it, maybe get some veterans and pros looking into it. If word processors helped writers in days of yore, then VR could help a new generation of writers. 

Did I mention that I'm also reading my eBooks in VR also? It's becoming a problem (or a boon) to my life. The best thing about reading eBooks in VR is reading lying down without your arms getting fatigued and so risk the book or eBook falling on your face. Progress. How awesome it is.




Sunday, August 2, 2020

Why I Outline


Whenever a debate arises regarding which method is the best (outlining vs pantsing vs hybrid), I ignore it. Previously, I was a staunch pantser, but as I continued with that method, I slowly realize that I'm an outliner.

I believe that no one chooses their writing process. A budding writer, however, won't know what their writing process is until they've finished manuscripts and tossed them away. It sucks that sacrificial lambs are necessary, but, hey, that doesn't mean you can't resurrect those stories. Writers are wizards, and wizards can learn necromancy.

So I ruminate as to why I outline--

Saturday, May 23, 2020

Late May 2020 Update - Writing in a VR Workspace

It has been a while, friends, but I am still writing my novel. I am at 39k words on Gridverse, which is a story about virtual reality in the far far future after the inevitable climate catastrophe.

And speaking of virtual reality...

I am trying out this app in Oculus Quest called "Immersed." It's a virtual workspace that allows online collaboration and also multiple screens that I desperately need for my day job. But, I'm also toying with the idea of using it for my writing. I could use a virtual monitor for my WIP, and more virtual monitors for my outlines, timer, research and something else. As of writing this, that feature is not available yet, but it will be a game changer for me and the workforce sequestered to their homes thanks to this dreaded virus.

Professional writers unanimously agree that one must carve out time and space for writing. I have taken care of the "time" part, but not the "space" part, currently. I write in our bedroom, with crap on my small desk and with an uninspiring view of my white wall. There's a window behind me, but it only shows another exciting white brick wall.

So a VR workspace is fitting, not only for my WIP, but for the environment it provides. Some folks write in coffee shops (which I had tried; not for me); some write in bars; some write in libraries, diners, hotels, motels and whatnot. VR shouldn't be too left field now would it? So, to start this experiment, this blog post was written in VR.


Only problem with this is my coffee drinking situation:




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Tuesday, March 10, 2020

March 2020 Update

Past the 20,000 word count milestone. Yipee!

Admittedly I've reached some roadblocks ahead, but I've persisted. Story is still on point, but there are some slight deviations as the story does what it wants to do.

Nothing much to share, really, just that I'm still writing the novel.



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Tuesday, February 4, 2020

February 2020 Update

The work in progress has reached 10k words. Also, I haven't veered too far from my outline, so I think we're set to finish this baby before the end of June.

All short stories had taken the backseat while I deliver this baby to a first draft. Once I'm done with it, I have some short stories I want to write and send out to pubs.



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Thursday, January 23, 2020

January 2020 Update (New Year, New Hobby)

Happy New Year everyone! 

Old news? I'm still writing, which is great news. I'm at 5000 words on the third novel. The outline has really served me well, and I'm on track to finish the first draft around Q2 2020 (sorry for the corporate-speak).

New news? I picked up VR art again, but I'm treating it as a hobby. I make "shitty vr art," and that's okay. Painting and sculpting in VR space is a lot of fun. And it works also as a writer since I get to listen to audiobooks.

My workflow in VR art and writing has been complimenting each other. Experimenting and trying new things pushes your limits. The more you create and finish, the more you learn about the craft and pick up things along the way. Finishing something sends the art for critique, and sometimes we're afraid to finish because some people might deem it a failure.

Even if you fail, you come out with the boon of knowledge and experience.

Success is learning from your failures, and failure is not learning from your mistakes.

Or, as what master Yoda said: the greatest teacher failure is.

Keep writing and making art!



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