For The Sleepers

Spider eggs suspended in a drain

They are asleep. They will not wake for me, Who storms and dragons dared, and braved the waves And chasms, of these waterfall-fed caves, To reach at last, this calm and silent sea. I bent before the first, to touch a brow, Realised she would be woken filled with fear, In vain struck notes on all the gongs set here; Then knelt upon the sand, and made a vow: "So long as I still live, and they still sleep, I'll join the dragons and the clashing rocks, Confront with them each challenger who knocks, And let none past who cannot make me weep." If I in vain did win my way within, Then none who's not my equal need begin.

ROW80 Week 2: Rethinking (my) Reflection

This is my second ROW80 update for the second round (linky). Again, I’m pretty happy with my progress this week. I wrote around 3,300 words: four sonnets, over two thousand words on a short story, and part of a dialogue tree for my computer-game project. In terms of strict word count, I’m well and truly up to speed.

I’m also up to speed with my reading goal, albeit due to a bit of tricky wording. While I did finish Anne Bishop’s novel Heir to the Shadows this week, I actually read half of it last round. That ambiguity is in my goals deliberately, though: if I had to read a new book each week, I’d have no reason to finish things I started earlier.

I wouldn’t say that I’m a raving fan of Heir to the Shadows, but I do admire the way Bishop integrates what her characters do at home into the stories — we don’t only see them in danger and out doing things. Partly, this just involves starting and ending the trips into danger at home, but I think it’s also because she finds more drama in the characters’ relationships. I suppose this is to do with the book being not strictly heroic fiction; if I want to emulate it, I need to be more familiar with non-fantasy genres.

My other two goals are making progress on Conkers, and reflection. I didn’t do any more writing on Conkers this week, but the short story is at least in the same setting. It’s also something of an epilogue for one character, so I might be able to use it to work backwards into the main story. So, better than last week.

However, I think I have to admit it’s too late to get reflection done this week. My problem is that I usually write reflection at the same time as my ROW80 update, so if I run late on the update, I tend to lose sleep writing the reflection. I might be better off setting up a specific time for reflection, and then just posting an update without it if I miss that deadline. For now, I’ll say reflection is due at midnight on Saturdays — no staying up late to finish it then, either.

ROW80 Check-in, Week 4

Here’s my check-in linky for the fourth week of A Round of Words in 80 days.

Once again, I’ve followed a good week with a bad one. Due mainly to poor sleeping patterns, I didn’t get writing until Friday (hence, again, no mid-week check-in). I wrote 160 words then, before deciding I wasn’t getting anywhere and giving up, so they probably don’t count. Since I planned to be away from home today, I deliberately took time to write on Saturday, and did get about 840 words then.

Along with a sonnet of about 100 words, this puts me at 950 or so for the week. That’s further behind than I was for Week 2, which I’m mainly blaming on a poor sleeping pattern.

I did come out of last week ahead, but I agree with Candice Abraham that it isn’t a good idea to use extra words from previous weeks as an excuse to slack. Of course, by assuming I can catch up the extra words next week, I’m effectively ‘borrowing’ words from the future, which is arguably the same thing. I would try to discuss that point, but I can’t afford to stay up any longer.