The Pickled Mushroom

Finally back on track <3

April 17, 2010
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It’s taken me long enough to get back to writing for NaNo, but it looks like I’ve finally back on the bandwagon I fell off of. I spent 8pm to 8am writing, downing one cup of black tea after the other, and although my word count is rather humble I’m satisfied. I managed only slightly more than 12k words in 12 hours – compared to the 20k that did in 14 hours during NaNo, that’s really not much. But I wrote out the plot I wanted to and I’m pretty happy with that.

I’m really coming to an end now with the story. It’s still a while off still, 20k or 30k at least, but the plot is almost at an end. I’m very excited and also very sad – the ending is rather sad and I’m considering writing an alternative ending as well, just to allow my beloved main character to be happy for a bit. Poor thing really is unlucky.

I also got around to writing the story of Albert’s life and death! It was so awesome, he suddenly kept giving me all of these words and even came up with a terrific reason for things happening later that I wasn’t sure how to include without making them unbelievable. He even provided me with this massive Dorian Gray fetish fuel – woah there. I love you so, so, so much Albert. And you too, Bas, for thinking your little thoughts and being an adorable grump once you’re sick.

Sooo… To wrap this up, behind the cut there’s a small excerpt from my session. Abraxas’ POV. In good NaNo tradition, un-edited, so there’s awkward wording, possible spelling and grammar errors ahead.


Slugging my way to… where, actually?

February 16, 2010
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School is CRAZY. I always thought I knew what school stress is, but I’ve never, NEVER, had as much to do as I currently do. Doesn’t help much that I’m having a major case of fangirling over various Naruto characters. Deary. Please bear with me being a lazy bum, I’ll get back to writing and posting sometime.

Anyway, there’ll be another post coming up sometime on my current fangirl obsession. I might even get around to writing some fanfiction, I’ve got something planned out. Whoot! Has been aging since I’ve written any fanfiction.

I also hardly find any time to write, I can’t even remember the last time I was working on my NaNo novel. Grrr. I could’ve finished the first draft by now if I had more time, motivation and inspiration. Hear me cry. In any case, here’s another small excerpt, from Jazz’ POV. One day I’ll finish this story, really. Go past the cut to see more of the excerpt! Drama ensues ❤

For a while we simply sat without talking, but then Bas moved as if to shrug off the silence that had gathered above our table. “He’ll be okay,” he said, sounding remarkably convinced all of a sudden.
I just nodded. “I think so,” I gave back. Bas was silent for a moment longer, studying his cup intently. Eventually, he began tracing the pattern on it with his finger.
“So, um…” he began slowly. “What was that yesterday? Where were you?” He didn’t sound particularly suspicious asking this, just curious and a little apprehensive perhaps. I still couldn’t help feeling like I was on thin ice suddenly.

(more…)


Sherlock Holmes and the wonderful PLING (63k!)

November 16, 2009
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Well well well, it’s been a while. I reached the magical 50k words barrier on the 11th of November because two hours before midnight I suddenly decided that it would be a fun thing to crack the minimum on 11/11. So, I stayed glued (woah, just spelled that ‘glood’ at first – should get to bed soon!) to my keyboard until shortly before midnight.

Since then it’s been a few days and now I’m proudly at 63k, EXACTLY. My daily average word count so far is at 4,200 words which has been better, but I can live with it. Currently I’m more at around 3k daily, though – and things have been stalling a bit, but it’s getting better now. Thank goodness, I need some more plot happening! At first Albert didn’t want to appear at all, now I’m having a hard time squeezing in scenes with other characters in between bits of him and Abraxas having crazy human-ghost sex. (Not really, but I always wanted to write that just to fulfill the cliché. Go, me.)

Anyways, today I ran into a bit of a problem that had be tearing out my hair for an hour before I figured out a way to work with it. (Please note: I don’t solve problems. I work with them.) So, Albert died in 1997. A big part of his first memories he gets back concern literature. Well, I had this PERFECT scheme of him having read all the Sherlock Holmes stories when they appeared, and he also owned his own copy of the complete works, all that jazz. Abraxas goes to a second hand book shop and happens to find that exact book, Albert’s name still in it and everything. Whoot.

Doesn’t sound so bad, right? Thought so, too. Until I checked my own copy of the complete novels and short stories. The last story wasn’t published until 1927. Dammit. But, being the clever little girl that I am, I also remembered that Holmes faked his death sometime and the series was on hold for a few years, including people publicly mourning his death with black armbands and veils, until he was ‘resurrected’ in The Adventure of the Empty House. Luckily, these years happened to be from 1993 to 1903. (In 1901, the Hound of the Baskervilles was published which takes place before Holmes’ alleged death chronologically, his actual return only came in 1903.)

This is something I could actually work with because in this manner, Albert died when all the world thought that Holmes was death for good and there must surely have been a ‘complete’ compilation around, so all’s well with the world. We also have a touching scene of Albert discovering that the hero of his youth actually ‘lived’ still.

This is what I love about writing, seriously.

Now, to leave the topic of NaNo for a moment and explain the PLING in the title: even before I took my first bellydance lesson I knew that I wanted to learn to play the finger cymbals (or zills, as they are also called). Zilling and dancing simultaneously is a skill that is considered essential to claim professionality by many. (Although, of course, there are people that disagree.) I myself love the mere concept and have been itching to reach a level to try it myself.

Well, my teacher heard from my eagerness to learn to play and invited me to take part in the cymbal project at the dance school and so I had my first real life acquaintance with zills yesterday.

IT. WAS. HEAVEN. TWENTYFOLD. NOT JOKING, GUYS.

I actually surprised myself by being able to dance and zill quite decently already – not perfect, of course, but I had been expecting to only be able to zill OR walk at a time, not to zill and actually move in a way that could be called dance if you’re optimistic. This is so many kinds of awesome I can’t even begin to tell you, really. I also got alphabet soup for the soul when people could hardly believe I’ve only been learning to dance for one and a half months. Goodness, I’m feeling like an idiot for sitting here with a huge, delirious grin on my face.

And so I bought my own first set of zills and am happily zilling up and down besides my bed in my room, annoying my rabbit. I already muffled every zill with masking tape, but they are still a bit loud, so I try to practice as much as possible down in the living-room where I won’t be disturbing Sally. (Only the neighbours, but they’ll have to live with it.)

Anyway, I should be off to bed now – it’s 12:30pm and I have to get up early. Laters, everyone!

 


France vs Germany & Austria (40k!)

November 9, 2009
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Well, who would have thought that? The ML’s (= municipal liaison) of France contacted the one of my home region, Germany & Austria, and suggested a massive international word war. Well, what can I say? We accepted.

There’s three disciplines:

  1. average word count
  2. percentage of winners (= people that reached 50k words or more)
  3. percentage of people that donated to NaNo

And we have to win two out of these three, of course.

Needless to say, this competition is extremely motivational and I’ve been typing like crazy for the past days, including today’s 4k (which I may still expand upon tonight) that finally brought me to beautiful 40k. I’m so proud of myself, and I still have so much to go. So much fun!
Now, have some excerpt-y goodness before I get back upstairs.

(more…)


November 9, 2009
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First off, I forgot to mention earlier that today I visited the basar at my bellydance studio. I loved it; my dance teacher improvised a beledi that was just incredible, I can’t wait to learn that. (She looked stunning in her dress too.) I bought a whole lot of stuff: a new hip scarf (red with beautiful red beaded crocheted hem), a cd, earrings and two necklaces. I could just barely resist the set of zills sitting there, but maybe if I decide if I’ll take part in the zills project. (I so want to do that, but I’m not sure if I’m actually at a point already where I can start to learn zilling. I’ll ask on Wednesday.)

What’s more, there was also a book market in our town and I bought a book from 1910 called “Women and their world” and three post cards stemming from World War I. Beautiful portraits on the front! They also gave me the inspiration on how to do an important scene in my novel.

It has been a long while since I have felt as strongly about two of my literary characters as I do about Jazz and Barb.

I love writing them.

And I wrote them a love declaration, just because. Right after I finished last night. I don’t care if no one ever reads this, but it has to get out. Here’s to you, Jazz and Barb.

(more…)


Fifty Percent Gay (36k!)

November 9, 2009
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As hedgefairy already noticed in her comment on my last post, the name of this blog has changed again, and it’s probably going to stay at least for as long as I will be working on my novel. Now, to make the explanation I gave hedgefairy understandable for everyone else on here who doesn’t speak German:

The Pickled Mushroom is a setting in my novel, more specifically a pub that’s pretty much the most exciting place for a newcomer band to feature. I actually worked a lot with the impressions I got from the Irish pub and restaurant Hapenny Bridge in Geelong during my exchange when I saw Kate Miller-Heidke playing there. The Pickled Mushroom has a very similar layout, but is weirder, featuring an eccentric owner that never fails to remind me of Master Guy in disguise. (Hello, Naruto readers out there!) This owner also happens to be named in a special way, he is Mr Ian Woon. If you change those letters around, it spells out NaNoWriMo, and featuring him in their novel is an endeavour every good NaNoer tries their hand at. (Or at least, a lot do.) Piece of useless side information: he was actually called Mario at first, before I changed my mind.

So. We’ve got the setting, we know Jazz is playing with his band The Stingrays and he’s pretty nervous. Barbara is there and Abraxas too, his girlfriend Emilie and a whole bunch of others. The concert is awesome and stuff happens. Wanna meet the band? Have some of the unedited goodness. (There’s another post coming up right now, just to not make this one too long.) Just for your info, Marcel’s lead singer, London guitar, Andy bass and Jazz drums.

(more…)


2 Story Excerpts – Enter the Fun! (26k!)

November 7, 2009
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As you will have noticed, I changed the design of the blog, simply so I can now proudly display my word count widget to the left. Isn’t it pretty? Makes me all fuzzy to look at it.

Anyway, as promised, here’s two excerpts from what I’ve written so far. Please note that NaNo is for writing, not editing, so it’s pretty raw still, there’s typos and awkward sentence structures in there, unripe concepts of sentences, and lots of word repetitions. If you can bear that, read on!


6 Days into the Madness – and loving it!

November 6, 2009
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Why, hello there. I am still alive and well and writing – the latter being the most important right now, of course.

If anyone has had a glance at my page over at NaNoWriMo, they will no doubt have seen that I’m doing pretty well so far – 22k words on day 6 (and I haven’t even really started writing yet for today) is an achievement I’m really proud of.

So, how has it been going? I started off with a great 7,225 words by midnight of the first day and did well except for Wednesday when I reached “only” 1,317 because I procrastinated my writing until past eleven pm and had to start hammering out something before I got a total of zero that day. At school I’m constantly being stared at when I explain that I’m writing a probably-100k-novel just for fun, and people are learning not to ask me how I am today, but what my word count is.

Click for more, including a super-duper-special-exclusive sentence straight from the novel.