First Rule of the Quest

There comes a time when bridges must be burned;
When Fate demands too much to let you share.
When youthful loves and friendships must be spurned
And fire flood the streets, to clear the air.

There comes a time when sanctuaries close.
When seals and solemn vows must lose their force,
Their might made moot by ever-greater foes.
And all you have is courage, and a cause.

There comes a time when doom can wait no more;
What's left of hope, you gamble in one blow —
Let dice a lifetime falling reach the floor.
Here fates conclude, then let the living go.

Till that uncertain day, when all quests end,
You shall not taste the world that you defend.

ROW80 Week 8: When Things Work

(other ROW80 participants)

This week has been tiring, but I’m happy to call it a success. I wrote five days out of seven (or it may even have been six), started to catch up on my reading goals, and got a vastly clearer understanding of my travel plans.

Except for Sunday, I started my free time each day by working on my goals. I don’t know that this got any more done than the last-minute strategy, but it has been much lower stress.


I finished Greg Egan’s The Eternal Flame this week. This series (Orthogonal) is the most science-heavy science fiction I’ve ever read — the way the quantum physics of light works in the setting is a major part of the plot.

Despite that obvious difference, I think the book has a lot in common with Agatha Christie’s work. There’s a mystery (albeit scientific), a complex social situation, and a threat that is deadly but not particularly tense.

Travel Plans

I spent a lot of time this week talking to my family (who’ve all been overseas before) about what I needed to bring to Europe. With their help, I’ve sorted out the phone issue. They also pointed out a lot of things that I was overcomplicating or trying to get too early.

As a result, I now have a much clearer idea of what I need to get done. For this week, that’s making backup copies of documents.

Good luck and happy writing!

ROW80 Week 7: Limitations

(Other ROW80 participants)

This has been a week for reconsidering things.

The roleplaying group was on again this week, and the preparation I originally did for it has now run out. That wouldn’t have been a problem if I’d done more in the meantime; but as things were, I ended up pushing myself to stay up late each night to finish it.

After Tammy J Rizzo suggested I should reconsider my goals, I realised I wasn’t going to have anything ready. That got me to make alternate plans, and took a lot of the stress off.

In the meantime, though, my other goals fell behind.

On the travel front, I started researching phone options, and got a travel card half-organised. While I didn’t finish anything, I’m still making progress; even if I have to do some things (like get a coat) after I arrive in Europe, I should manage to have everything sorted out.

I did actually manage to write six days, mainly because I count the roleplaying stuff towards that goal.

Reading didn’t do so well. Partly, this is because I realised I should be focussing on library books, and saving the book I’d bought to take on the Europe trip; but it didn’t help that I’d been resting on my laurels a bit for the past two weeks.

I think the underlying problem is that I’m not pacing myself properly — even on a daily scale, if I’d started writing as soon as I got home rather than playing video games for most of the evening, I probably could have got more done with less stress.

As an extra six-days-out-of-seven goal in the coming week, I’m aiming to make progress on my goals before I start playing computer games or browsing the web.

Good luck and happy writing!

ROW80 Week 6: Piecemeal

(Other ROW80 participants)

This week has been one of bits and pieces. My cousin was visiting over the weekend, and I spent a lot of time out at family- and work-related events.

I think I wrote six days out of seven, but my records are a bit confused; in any case, it was definitely a substantial amount.

My main travel progress was booking accommodation near the airport for before/after I go to Europe; I did some other planning as well, but nothing very substantial.

This is actually getting to be a problem, since I now have seven things on my to-do list, and only five weeks left. To make up for that, I’m aiming to do two travel things this week — decide how to set up my phone for Europe, and sort out how I’ll be carrying money.

Good luck and happy writing!

ROW80 Week 5: Keystone

(Other ROW80 participants)

Travel Preparation

My travel and accomodation is booked! Well, mostly booked — I still need to organise staying near the airport when I leave and come back, but that should be much simpler than the international bookings.

This also puts me in a position to tick off a lot of other things that were waiting for the itinerary, so hopefully this will be a week with lots of progress.

Other Goals

Reading wasn’t a priority this week, since I’m ahead on it.

I did get my six days of writing done, though; some days it was in very short pieces, but that’s partly because I had a lot of non-writing projects catch my interest.

Good luck and happy writing!

Edit: I got a bit lost navigating the new WordPress interface, which is why this post is a week late.

Of Innocence

Upon the ground, the snow sits neat and white;
No hole nor stain has marked the morning's page.
The clouds have fled and all the fields are bright.
For truth revealed, the storm has set the stage.

Till noon it stays untouched, then doors unlock
And, dressed for law, the jury leave the court.
Their break's too brief; the case is fiercely fought.
A murder suspect waits within the dock.

For months the case runs on, until each side
Is out of speeches. Only facts remain:
She swore to kill a man who must have died,
And on her knife's his blood. Her hope's in vain.

No body found. But till the thaw, no doubt.
Then bullet-ridden bones from snow rose out...

ROW80 Week 4: Apace

(Other ROW80 participants)

Travel Preparation

My aim this week was to finish off the things I needed appointments for. I did make a serious start on that, but the only one I’ve actually done so far is the doctors’ appointment.

This may have been superfluous for a trip to Europe; all I ended up getting was a flu shot. Still, it’s one more thing off the list.

Reading (a book every two weeks)

I read Ketchup Clouds, by Annabel Pitcher (her books page is out of date, but I imagine she’ll add it eventually). I didn’t plan to read the book — just picked it up in the library, and was hooked by the first few pages.

I’m not quite sure how that happened. Obviously the mystery of what terrible thing Zoe has done was a big part of it, but I think it must have taken more than that to get me so enthralled, so quickly.

Something to aspire to :-).

Writing (six days a week)

For once, I actually managed this; I’ve done six snippets of writing, including one-and-a-half sonnets.

This wasn’t a week of grand achievements, but that’s not what I’m aiming for this round.

Good luck and happy writing!