Looking back on Q4 of 2016

You can’t see either end of the corridor.

Whoever had the torch has ducked into a side room, and the only light is the flickering reflection of the doorway on the opposite wall.

Sounds echo out of the darkness. The drip of water. A skittering of claws on stone. A drawn-out creak ends with a thud, and you are suddenly aware of the weight of the mountain above you.

Air moves on the back of your neck. You turn around, but see nothing.

Someone points and yells. Other convicts rush towards, then past you. A hand grabs your arm, and you are part of the charge before you know what you are charging at.

Aside from writing that (just now), what did I do over the holidays?

Caught up with my family, cooked, travelled, and various other things that weren’t part of my goals. In retrospect, I probably should have realised those two weeks of leave weren’t going to mean lots of work on projects.

That said, I did get a decent amount done on each of my five goals:

Finish collecting data for my Mary Sue project

I got sick of all this scoring fairly early in the piece, so I’ve got seven comics still to score. I’d like to finish all of them by January; but for now, I’m focusing on doing a little each day, to avoid pushing myself any harder than necessary.

Add editing of doors to Aeldardin Rooms.

This is half-way done. I did get back to it over New Year’s, but I spent all my time editing old code and didn’t program in anything new.

Write a couple of things a week

Again, about 50% successful; I wrote about one thing a week, although a lot of it was half-formed ideas that didn’t get very far.

Keep posting updates

Nope.

Finish my roleplaying project (added mid-December)

I’m counting this as a success. I managed to collect all the rules I needed, write up a scenario, and then actually run the game (on New Year’s Eve, just creeping in before the end of the quarter). That’s what inspired the snippet above.

What I’ve got is still very much a draft, but now I know where to focus next. Step one: plan monsters in advance. Step two: remember to print everything out.


I’m also looking at joining another writing group, but I don’t think it will show up in my goals until mid-February or so.

Good luck and happy writing!

Q4 Week 7.5: Come What May

Last week went well. This week, not so much.

Sick Human, Sick Computer

On Sunday, I scored the two comics I needed to catch up on the Mary Sue project; I’m now back to a steady goal of two comics per week.

On Monday, I collapsed with a headache, the fruit of a cold that had been growing all weekend.

The cold was under control by Tuesday, but my computer wouldn’t start — I did eventually get it working, but I suspect the hard drive is starting to give up the ghost.

I suspect I need to spend some time looking after everyday things.

That “side” project

Technically, you are under sentence of death.

The law of the Six Cities states this point very clearly. As clearly, in fact, as it forbids executing citizens for your crimes.

Sadly, the courts are not obliged to release you when they realise this.

Instead, they offer you a pardon — but one with strings attached: If you serve one of the great Lords on the frontier, and work hard and faithfully for seven years, you will be allowed to go free.

If you refuse to serve, you will be left on the Hulks until the slime and the sea claim you.

Eventually, even the Black Mountain seems a better choice than that.

(Source on conditional pardons)

This Australia-inspired roleplaying scenario continues to haunt my spare time. At this point, I think it’s well and truly replaced the programming project I was working on.

But it is also getting closer to “finished” — as much as a game can be without meeting players, anyway.

In light of that, I’m putting my programming goal on the back burner for now. The roleplaying stuff needs to be finished by the 17th, so I’ll try and switch back to programming over the Christmas holidays.

Updated Goals

These are my new goals for the next few weeks:

  • Assemble rules and treasure lists for my roleplaying project (by December 17th).
  • Continue scoring two webcomics per week for Mary Sues.
  • Write two short pieces (or for two evenings) each week.
  • Decide what to replace my computer with (by December 5th).
  • Hold off on working on these for the next couple of days so I can start to recover from the cold.

Good luck and happy writing!