Posts Tagged ‘story’

Let me explain the new series I just started, Classic Thursdays. I write a review of a classic movie every other week of the month. I review movies given the status of classics by more than a few individuals, and write whether or not I think they deserve their classic status. There will be some spoilers, but I’ll be sure to write a warning before a massive one. So, for the first post in the new series, I decided to take on a relatively new classic called No Country for Old Men.

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That was taken from the late Roger Ebert’s ten best films of 2007. And if he called it a perfect movie, I think No Country for Old Men counts as a classic in the sense that it received almost universal critical acclaim. In fact, there’s an entire Wikipedia page dedicated to what it all means. There’s also a notable film critic that chose No Country for Old Men as the #1 movie of the decade, and MSN chose it as best film of the decade as well.

So, hopefully, that explains why I’ve chosen it as the first movie for Classic Thursdays. I remember a good friend of mine recommended it to me a year ago, and told me that it was his favorite movie. So, I watched the first eighteen minutes, and wasn’t impressed.

At the time, I really wasn’t in the mood for something so serious, so I decided to watch it another time. Then I watched it maybe a few months ago, and I gained perspective on the movie. It is a good movie, but I don’t consider it a classic. Let me explain.

In the first thirty minutes, you’d think that the main character is Llewelyn Moss (portrayed by Josh Brolin). But, the real main character is Anton Chigurh (portrayed by Javier Bardem). He is also the antagonist. Josh Brolin plays a hunter that stumbles upon the aftermath of a bloody shootout between two different drug cartels, and finds a suitcase of money. He takes it and hides it at his home. It isn’t long, of course, before the cartel finds out that it was him who took the money because he visits the scene of the crime again just as they arrive.

It’s at this point that you realize that his character isn’t very bright. I mean. Let’s face it. He’s not the sharpest tool in the shed. But, he does know how to fight back and run. I can give him that. Eventually, the drug cartel sends Anton Chigurh (don’t worry if you can’t pronounce his name. No one else in the movie can, either) and a game of cat and mouse ensues.

I’m reminded of an exchange between two characters on the sitcom, That 70’s Show.

Michael Kelso: “Let the game of cat and mouse begin!” 

Fez: “What happens to the cat if the mouse is retarded?”

And at times, you can get frustrated with Josh Brolin’s character. I discovered a good way to stop being frustrated with him, though. I came to terms with the fact that Javier Bardem’s character is the main character. So, I simply started rooting for Anton Chigurh. I know, horrible of me. But, I enjoyed the movie immensely once I started to think of Anton as the protagonist.

Warning. There will be spoilers from this point on. Look away now.

Looked away? All right. Now I’m going to do my best to “analyze” this movie. Though I’m horrible at proper analysis..

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A lot of people have complained about the last thirty minutes of this movie. Why? Well, Llewelyn Moss (Josh Brolin) gets killed by the OTHER cartel offscreen. Yup. Anton Chigurh kills Llewelyn’s wife, and lives to kill another day. It ends with Tommy Lee Jones’ delivering a staggeringly awesome performance as he tells his wife about his dream. Now, in an attempt to give you a fresh analysis, I didn’t read the entire Wikipedia page on it. I’m going to give you my take on it, and if it lines up with the take of all the other people.. well, good for me. If not, well, good for them, I guess?

Anyways. Llewelyn Moss reminds me a lot of sheep. And I’m reminded of the idea that humans are really smarter sheep. I think the reason why a lot of people have complained about Josh Brolin’s character is because it feels so familiar. He’s a normal guy, right? And it makes people wonder how they would act if they were in his situation.

And what truly makes people dislike his character is simply because there is a chance that they would panic just like him. Anton Chigurh, in that sense, is more like a wolf. This feels really cliche, I know, but this is what I felt when I watched this movie. Anton Chigurh is an unstoppable force, and everyone knows it. Josh Brolin, however, is not the immovable object.

I think the Old Men are the immovable object. (Going off the wayside a bit there, Jian.)

Well, I was thinking about the paradox about the unstoppable force and immovable object, right. And while I’m not the best informed on this theory (hardly), I do think that the character of Anton Chigurh fits as the unstoppable force. And I think that the pedestal that the Old Men (basically, our ancestors) reflects a lot of what people think nowadays. They will always look back to the past, and romanticize it. For the majority, it’s part of our nature. Every generation thinks that the world is going to end with them.

Anton Chigurh’s job is to mock them for hero worshipping the past so much. Don’t get me wrong. I sometimes look to the past, and think, “Well, everything was good back then. No psychos like we have today.”

And I’d be completely wrong! One of todays biggest misconceptions among the populous is that crime has gone up. In reality, crime has gone down by 25% since the 1950’s. Crimes went largely unreported back then because we didn’t have the technology to really do anything about a lot of crime.

Now, if someone sneezes and wipes the snot on a handbag at a store, the police know about it. The media, in part, helps feed this idea. The media wasn’t as well-informed in the 1950’s, and crime reporters didn’t hear that much about crime. (In fact, L.A. Confidential represents the end of the era where the police didn’t tell the media about practically every crime.)

I’m part of a good generation. Sure, we have our own little problems (don’t get me started about our celebrities), but it’s not as bad as the Middle Ages, is it?

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Okay. Two of ’em. Both had my father. It’s peculiar. I’m older now’n he ever was by twenty years. So in a sense he’s the younger man.

I think it was that particular line which gave away the fact that this was a satire of modern culture. Or, at least, that’s how I view it.

Now, I could be wrong and I could be misinterpreting the movie. But that’s the point, I think, of this movie. To make up your own opinions on it. I remember a scene from Life of Pi where Pi’s father tells him that animals have no souls. What you see in their eyes is your own thoughts and emotions reflected back at you.

I think that’s what movies are, really. And this is what was reflected back at me when I watched it.

So, is this a classic? I don’t think it’s earned that, yet. Is this a great movie? It is. I enjoyed this movie immensely, and I like the fact that I had to think about a lot of its themes. I hope you’ve enjoyed the first post of my new series. Comment if you have any thoughts to add, or if you completely disagree with me on every level. I would love to hear what you guys think.

~Jian

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I recently started reading Under the Dome, and I’m maybe four hundred pages into it. Out of all the Stephen King books I’ve read, Under the Dome has to be the best so far. It is grand in scale, and I love the characters. So, the moment I found out there was a Tv show, I was giddy with excitement.

I’m going to spend the rest of this review telling you all whether or not it lives up to Under the Dome, or if it’s a good show in general. Like I said before, I have not finished the book. I’m still in the process of reading it, but I just really wanted to review this Tv show. So, please excuse me if I don’t know all the characters, or I can’t tell you all the differences. I’m not a very attentive reader, so there’s your warning.

I will mention this right now. This isn’t an ultra-faithful adaptation of Under the Dome. This is obvious within the first six minutes. (I took notes while watching it.) But you can skip the next nine paragraphs if you don’t want to hear about the comparisons I made with the book and the show. Afterwards, all I’ll discuss is whether or not the show is good. So, feel free to skip to 10 paragraphs from now.

They changed the characters a lot, and I think that they took an interesting change with the characters. For one, Dale Barbara’s/Barbie’s character (portrayed by Mike Vogel) is rather different from the book. In fact, most of the characters are different from the book. Rusty Everett, the physician and husband of one of Chester’s Mill deputies, is a fireman in here. And Chief Duke Perkins actually called him a meathead.

Considering the fact that he was my second favorite character in the book – next to Barbie – I was really surprised by this choice. But knowing Brian K. Vaughan (who’s written for Lost, one of my favorite shows, and also wrote a TON of amazing comic books that I love) was handling this, I had faith it was for a good reason.

I think the changes they’ve done with the antagonists, however, was really for the best. Okay, we all know Big Jim and Junior Rennie were the bad guys. So, I’m not spoiling anything. But, in the book, practically everyone knew they were the antagonists. And they were made out to be amazing fakers and that’s what made them dangerous. I didn’t get the impression of that in the book. Maybe this is because I got to see what they were actually thinking, but this wasn’t aided by the fact that 90% of all of the characters saw Big Jim and Junior for what they were.

In the Tv series, on the other hand, I was very impressed with the way they’ve handled their characters. I could see why people thought they weren’t a threat, and why Big Jim would be a successful car dealer. Big Jim is portrayed by the talented Dean Morris, and I think they casted him perfectly. Dean Morris ( from Breaking Bad ) is one of those actors that can be charming and deadly all at once. I think he should get a lot more lead roles, since he’s one of the few actors I think can hold his own next to Bryan Cranston. (Which is saying something.)

Perhaps the two biggest changes in character, though, is the change in Barbie’s and Angie’s character. Let me explain. Barbie, in the book, is a drifter who became a short order cook at a local diner in Chester’s Mill. He’s former military, highly trained, but when the girlfriend of one of the town’s infamous jerks tries to make a move on him… things start to go by the wayside of things. The friends of said jerk (including Junior Rennie) ambush Barbie as he’s closing the diner, and he manages to kick their ass despite the unfair advantage.

Junior cries to his Dad about it, and his Dad makes life miserable for Barbie. So, the book starts with Dale about to leave Chester’s Mill. His plan goes awry when the Dome drops into place, and a plane crashes into it. And he was so close to leaving the miserable town!

In the Tv series, Dale is… well, he’s not so innocent. The Pilot episode begins with Dale burying a dead body, and we see him yelling into a phone, worried about Chief Perkins catching him. That’s as different as it could possibly be, if you ask me.

The other change is the fact that Angie McAlister is not killed in the first few minutes. In the book, Angie’s killed by Junior Rennie pretty quickly. It appears like she’ll be a main character here, and I thought it was an interesting change. It’s not a bad one, but at the same time, I’m wondering if this is the show’s way of showing the viewers from the get go that it’s definitely not the same as the book.

And I think it’s a good way of doing that. Her character certainly seems more interesting than in the book, and I guess now people have an attractive young woman to look forward to seeing.

Okay. Now I’ll write about the actual show. I’ll try to keep the comparisons to the book out, but no promises. I like it when people adapt books into movies or Tv shows. I know they fail often, but the thing is, they make it a lot faster paced.

And Under the Dome is no exception. Within the first eight minutes, the Dome drops, and most of the main cast knows about it by the twenty-four minute mark. I thought this was a smart decision, and the tension feels truly real here. Since this isn’t an ultra-faithful adaption, I had no idea what could happen.

Another nice touch made by the show is making everyone completely silent from the other side of the Dome. I thought this really ramped up tension, and made everything feel surreal. I mean, you can see people on the other side mouthing words, but you don’t actually hear it. It’s a very creepy feeling, and it only enhances the claustrophobic feeling of being a bug in a jar. (Which is essentially what they are.)

The characterization in this show is honestly quite something. In the first episode, I know these characters. I’ve read the first 400 pages of the book, but you should believe me when I say that most of these characters have been put through the ringer and changed almost completely. And I think they improved some of them. I especially liked the fact that they combined the role of First Selectman Andy Sanders and Chief Duke Perkins. Only readers of the book will understand this. But, it feels a lot more… tight?

I think the director of the first episode, Niels Arden Oplev, knows what he is doing. Everything is perfectly timed, and everything is clear. Precise. And unlike a lot of the modern directors, he doesn’t rely on expository dialogue too much. Tv shows and movies are a visual medium, and it honestly makes me cringe when the director and writers feel that they need to dumb it down for the audience.

I thought that this is a fine example of that, and it was definitely something to smile about. The final ten minutes, to be exact, was absolutely perfect. You’ll see if you watch it. I loved the ending.

Let me talk about the acting now. The two standout actors has to be Dean Morris, Jeff Fahey, and Alexander Koch. I already talked a little bit about Dean Morris, so let me talk about the other two. You may recognize Jeff Fahey as Frank Lapidus from Lost. I have to say, his portrayal of Duke Perkins is pitch perfect. Duke Perkins in the book was very interesting, but there’s subtlety and layers to Jeff Fahey’s acting that I thought was really great. Alexander Koch plays Junior Rennie, one of the two aforementioned antagonists from the book. (Mind you, Brian K. Vaughan could still throw us a curveball and make one of the teenagers the villain. He could pull it off, too.)

I think that Alexander Koch’s portrayal of Junior Rennie is awesome. As with the character of Big Jim, I think they changed his character for the better here. He’s a really bad guy. Disgusting, even. However, the thing that makes most people disgusting… is the fact that they could put on a facade and fool you. It’s what makes serial killers terrifying. They could be the guy/gal organizing the charity, he could be the guy/gal that serves you your food. You just never know.

And that’s what I like about this character now. I hated this character in the book. Absolutely hated him. But here.. Well, I still don’t like him. But the fact that it made me think twice is really something. The episode starts out with him confessing his life to a girl he’s held a torch for since he was in the 3rd Grade. And he’s dismissed immediately.

I’m not condoning his violent nature or anything like that. But I thought that this made his character a little more… realistic. I don’t think people are inherently evil. I just believe that there are “triggers” for every person, and for certain people, that trigger can be exactly the same as Junior Rennie’s trigger. And let me tell you. It gets pulled all right.

So, I think that portraying this character would be difficult for pretty much any character, and Alexander Koch pulls it off swimmingly. It’s fantastic to watch, and I look forward to future episodes to see how he takes the role to the next level.

So, let’s see the list.

1. Story: Interesting.

2. Characterization: Intriguing.

3. Acting: Top notch.

That’s the main check list I use when I watch anything. There are a few laughs in here, but I’m going to flat out tell you right now that this isn’t a comedy. Maybe a very dark, DARK comedy. But it’s important to know that this is a straight up drama. I came in expecting a drama, and that’s exactly what I got back.

Now, it looks like it’s only going to be a miniseries. After seeing this, I was kinda disappointed. It’s difficult to pack a thousand page novel into thirteen episodes, after all, and I’m afraid it might end up being rushed. There’s fast paced and there’s tripping over yourself and falling down the stairs. I really hope this show doesn’t trip over their shoelaces on this one.

So. This is definitely a show worth watching. It’s important that you know it’s rather different from the book, but really. It’s still quite good. That’s the point. Considering the show selection for summer ( I.E. Keeping Up with the Kardashians ), this is the Holy Grail of television shows right now. (Mostly because I’m not up to date with Mad Men. Catching up, though!)

I’m giving this show an 8.5/10. It’s a spectacular show. Not without its flaws, and I was really annoyed at certain changes from the book, but it is still worth watching. It was easy to forget about the annoyances and just enjoy the show. And that’s what shows are for, aren’t they?

So, if you have some spare time, Under the Dome could be the new show to watch during your summer vacation.

~Jian

I don’t mean going without sleep for 72 hours straight. (Yeah, you only have to go without sleep for 48 hours anyways.)

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However, I want to talk about exercising your creative muscles. I really don’t exercise my physical muscles as much as I should, but people forget that while writing isn’t really physically demanding, you do need to do a lot of work in it, as well.

So, what do I mean by pushing yourself to the limit? A few examples of how I pushed myself in the past will be in order. The first time was when I was still writing the Line of Corruption. This was maybe late 2011, or early 2012. I was writing a massive battle, and it was honestly the first time I’d written something like it. I’d written huge battles before, but it was the first time where the impact of the results affected the main characters so strongly.

In order to keep up the pace and momentum, I wrote it like a reader would read it. Nonstop. I wrote eight thousand words in one sitting. The next day I wrote four thousand words, and on Saturday, I wrote another four thousand words. That was how I ended Part I of Line of Corruption.

I was creatively drained afterwards. Didn’t write a word for maybe a week. But I was done with Part I. It clocked in at around 53k words. Writing eight thousand words is not as difficult as I assumed before I wrote it. It’s really a question of whether or not you want to persevere. See, the reason why we normally don’t write ten thousand words in one sitting is because you will probably hit a creative wall. And there are two things you can do.

1. Call it a day, and see if you can scale the wall tomorrow with the proper equipment.

2. Channel Jackie Chan, and try to jump over the wall and hope for the best.

That’s how I always saw it. And at times, I really wished I took a few karate lessons. Since the grammar mistakes were ridiculously bad, and I immediately removed those mistakes the next day, but the point is that it is possible if you are willing to throw caution to the wind. That’s how I like to write. Make it risky. I like to think it worked, because the fight scenes had an urgency to them. (Because dinner was in thirty minutes, and I had to wrap it up before then.)

So, there’s your first example of when I pushed myself. Second example is when I wrote Radio Silence. I was preparing for NaNoWriMo, and I had a cool idea for a horror story. So, I just wrote the first four thousand words in one sitting. It’s not as impressive, I guess, as the part with Line of Corruption. But I did push myself because I had no idea what I was going to do with the story.

So, what the next hundred words was going to entail was a mystery to me until I was literally a dozen words away from writing it. That’s how I did it. And it worked out. Then, around January, I pushed myself again with an Urban Fantasy story. I wrote five thousand words in one hour. I was chatting with my friend at the time, and every time I wrote a thousand words, I’d send him a message challenging him to beat it.

I liked the story a lot, but I made a lot of mistakes. Mostly with verb tenses. I’d written it in first person perspective, and I hadn’t written anything like that before. I think I may have deleted it, but I may have it on a forum I made with some of my writer friends where we can post our writings and critique each other’s work even when we’re not online on Skype.

So, tomorrow, I’m going to push myself again with Radio Silence. My goal is to get to Chapter 8 by midnight. I’ve got two big fights planned between Gordon and a prisoner, and it’s going to be a lot of fun writing them. I at least need to finish writing Chapter Six because I held off on posting Chapter Five last friday so I can post two chapters next Friday. (No worries – it’ll still be suspenseful. You’re welcome. -dodges a burning trashcan- )

The point is, pushing yourself as a writer is never really a bad thing. Sure, you make a lot of mistakes along the way, and I certainly wrote some pretty incomprehensible things while I was pushing myself, but it’s at times like that when you can test your determination. You get to see just how stubborn you are. I’ll most likely set out an hour tomorrow so I can write Chapter 6 and 7, and as a bonus, I’ll make a video of myself writing it. A few months ago, I learned how to record my computer screen by using this program, Screenflow.

So, prepare yourself for a video after I post Chapter Five and Six. You’ll see a lot of deleting, terrible punctuation errors, and massive factual errors. I know, sounds like a lot of fun.

It’s really a video for the people that are most interested in how I write things (yes, all ten views will be myself re-watching it to see all my mistakes), and I’ll most likely speed up the video on Final Cut Pro X so it isn’t so dreadfully long. Hope you’re looking forward to it.

When have you pushed yourself as a writer? I’d love to hear your stories down in the comments, and I bet they’re a lot less mistake-filled as mine. Have a cool day.

As some of you may know (since I’ve been screaming it from the rooftops), I’ve been serialized. I’m really quite glad about this, but I’ve been getting used to what being serialized actually means. It means being consistent and writing on a schedule. You don’t actually have to follow a schedule. You can post chapters whenever you feel like it, but I prefer sticking to a schedule. I post a new chapter on Friday for three weeks. No chapter on the fourth week because that’s a bit too much, even for me.

I used to write whenever I wanted to, and that actually worked quite well for me. Now, I have to be able to write a whole lot within a week so it can be edited properly before getting published. It’s honestly a dream come true. I like the fact that I now have people looking forward to reading the next chapter of my story. It makes me try a lot harder, and I’m currently working on something for a chapter in Radio Silence’s future where I do something really experimental.

But, there are downsides to this. Like I said in a previous post, I came upon a problem in writing a chapter for Radio Silence. I’ve since overcome that problem, but it still made me stop and think: “What if I wasn’t able to get over it?”

So, I will most likely be writing a lot more vigorously so I’m at least two to three chapters ahead of everyone. Chapter 4 of Radio Silence has already been written, and I’m working on Chapter 5 now. It was really cool to suddenly start writing on a schedule because it made me feel like a bona fide author. It also gave me some perspective on the problems some authors have when writing. I’ve seen and read the complaints of people when a writer can’t reach his/her deadline and isn’t able to get the book out in time (I was one of them, most of the time), but until now, I never realized just how hard it may be for a lot of them. Like I said, I am far from a professional writer.

Yet, I have been writing in the mindset that with a single sentence, everything could come crashing down around me. I didn’t have this feeling with the Line of Corruption because I felt safe with the knowledge that any mistake I made would be spotted and fixed long before it was ever published. Now, there’s a week – two weeks, maximum – before a chapter of Radio Silence is posted. I reread each chapter about five times, even after it’s published. But, I always keep in mind that each chapter has to be at least as good as the last one, and it would be great if each one is better than the previous ones. That’s how I write my chapters lately.

“Okay. So, this chapter’s going to be better than the last one. Oh, wonder how I’m gonna write a better chapter than this.”

It forces me to write beyond what I thought was my limit. I constantly come up with ways to make each chapter substantially better by trying out something I would never have imagined when I was writing the Line of Corruption. So, really, this post is more about how cool being serialized is… and why I think that it’s cool, even with the dangers. One thing I’ve enjoyed immensely since I started writing Radio Silence itself is finding new songs. As some of you may know, each chapter of Radio Silence is named after a song, and while I write that chapter, I listen to that song on repeat.

This has kind of gotten on my nerves when I had to listen to a song on repeat when I wasn’t even a fan of it. But, for the sake of matching the chapter to the tone I’d intended when I started it (and because the song was just perfect for it), I persevered. “Wow, listening to a song you don’t like. How do you do it, Jian?”

Eating healthily, and exercising regularly. Take that to the press. So, anyways. Those are my thoughts on writing on a schedule. I know it’s a really short post in comparison to my old posts, but I hate to try to drag things out to a thousand words when I can easily say it within 700. So, hope you’ve enjoyed this post. This was really a post telling other writers that if they’re afraid of the whole serialized thing… it isn’t bad at all.

For one, I am technically a published writer. So, that’s something to brag about at the Sunday dinner. (Be careful, though, because they might not give you dinner if you do it too often. )

Have a cool day.

~Jian

I love them. I love seeing people comment, I love discussing things with people that disagree with something I’ve said (granted that s/he approached it in a civil manner). And if possible, I try to reply to comments as fast as possible. The people that voted for Radio Silence, for example, have also taken the time to pass on their compliments in the comment sections. This is something that I really appreciate, and it was a lot of fun to read their praises and compliments.

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These are just some of the comments on Radio Silence that I have enjoyed reading, and loved replying to each and every one of them. I can’t begin to appreciate the effort people put in registering, voting, and then commenting for me. It was really inspiring. If you want to read all the comments, you can go to Radio Silence, scroll down, and read them. (Not sure about this, but I think you need to register an account to read them. Not sure.)

I was originally going to talk about comments in general, i.e. on places like Youtube, Rotten Tomatoes. All the usual suspects. I was planning on talking about those people that comment derogatory statements that (normally) make no sense at all, and generally ruin the pleasure of reading the comments for everyone.

But, considering I don’t really have a lot of experience with that kind of thing (fortunately), I’m just going to talk about what I do know. Which is the satisfaction of reading other people’s opinions. Earlier, I wrote a post about drafts that a few people disagreed with, but I honestly didn’t mind them disagreeing with my views on them. I was pleasantly surprised by it, and I had fun replying to their comments.

I mean. I can’t say I would’ve enjoyed it if they’d gone: “YOU’RE WRONG. I HATE YOU LIKE A DOG HATES A CAT.”

But fortunately, my readers are cool. 8)

I’ve also written posts where people agreed with me, and I of course enjoyed reading about those. But, a buddy of mine has told me that the reason why most of his readers don’t comment when they disagree is because they’re afraid the blogger and her/his followers will just rip them apart. Now, I find this very interesting.

See, to an extent, it is actually a reasonable fear. If we’re talking about Youtube (for example), and the subscribers of this person are very… loyal. It’s a normal occurrence. But, it was interesting to hear that people even fear this on intelligent blogs. I think that it’s sad that this happens, so I decided to write an entire post about it. If you disagree with me, please comment about it. As long as you say it in a relatively civil and intelligent manner, I am completely okay with it. I’d be happy to find out why you think I am incorrect, and if your reasons are all right, you may even sway me.

So, just thought I had to get that out there. I don’t think I have to say that it’s cool to comment that you liked what I’ve written, since I think everybody likes to hear that.

I hope that people will continue to comment in my future posts whether or not they agreed/disagreed with the point I made in a post, because I honestly find the opinions of others very enlightening.

Thanks for reading.

~Jian

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The above is a screenshot of my ranking, and it was made by my cool mother. I was studying   and my mom suddenly shouted: “You made the top 30!”

I dropped my pencil and rushed over to see if it was true. And it was! Because of the amazing support of my family, their friends, and the friends of their friends, and the people I’ve gotten acquainted with since I started blogging… I made it. Radio Silence is in the Top 30 with 353 votes. To bring perspective into how momentous this is, I was able to get to the Top 30 in roughly four weeks. And before Radio Silence, the fastest anyone was able to get to the Top 30 had been five weeks.

I was – and still am – amazed when this happened. I started pacing from one side of the room to another. I could not contain my excitement. This marks one of the few times where I cannot find the proper words to adequately describe how I felt when I found out.

Despite this, I still have a ways to go. It would be quite possible for me to be dethroned from the 30th position within a day or a week. So, it would still be a great favor to me if you – the reader – would take the time to vote for Radio Silence. You can also find the links to all the chapters here.

Still, I am just as happy as I can possibly be right now. Thank you to everyone that voted for me, and thank you to everyone that helped Radio Silence be the 30th most voted serial in Jukepop Serials, and the second most voted serial in the entire Horror genre.

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Thanks for everything.

-Jian

Well, don’t worry if you don’t get what I mean in the title. I’m pretty sure that this is a dilemma that only happens to rebellious writers that don’t plot. Now, I’ve talked on and on about how I don’t really plot things out. I mostly wing it. I have a vague idea of everything that will happen in the next three chapters, and most likely the ending, but I don’t really attempt to organize it.

It has caused some problems ( like now ), but I find that it makes writing a lot more interesting for me, and I’ve improved a great deal in writing. (Well, if you call being able to type really fast and being able to press the Delete button very fast an improvement.)

(Lots of parentheses in this post…)

Back to the point. I was writing the newest chapter in Radio Silence yesterday. I managed 438 words before I got stumped. The problem I had was that the main character, Gordon, finds people that aren’t actually… possessed. They’re all stuck in a room. However, there’s a very big chance that at least one of them is possessed. Now, I need a reason (a Why) for all of them being locked in a room.

Sounds simple, right? “Jian, just write that they’re in that room because a possessed person started killing people!”

That’s what I thought. However, I wanted a change of pace. See, if there’s a possessed person somewhere in the vicinity, the characters would just go: “Sheriff, go and find this possessed person!”

Conversation over. But I wanted there to be a conversation. For the past three chapters, I’ve had a lot of action. In Radio Silence, that is. I love action, but I also like conversations. Especially conversations that crack me up. My family says I’m corny, but I’m more of an orange… Yeah, even I think that’s a bad one.

Anyways, I need to find a good reason for them being in that room without them explicitly saying that there’s a crazed serial killer out there. At times like these, I kind of regret not plotting things out, like a cool writer. But, I’m not one for coolness, I guess. Whenever I consider plotting things out more accordingly, I remember that this was how I came up with the plot for Line of Corruption. I winged it.

I changed a few things, of course, in the editing room. But, I could not have come up with a better plot beforehand. That isn’t to say that I made the greatest plot ever, but for me, it was the plot best suited for my book. For Radio Silence, I have things planned out a bit more, actually. I know the ending, for one, and I know the fate of most of the characters.

So, I’m gonna go and find the Why in this chapter. Hopefully, it’ll be good. But that’s part of the adventure, I guess. I like writing about my problems in writing, because it normally reveals to me a good way to circumvent that problem. Oh, and I also like an awesome excuse to procrastinate. (And I just became even more rebellious…)

Hmm, I just got an idea for this newest chapter.. Off I go!