I have lots of Kudos!

With the premiere of The Incredibles 2, I’ve noticed a lot of notifications from An Archive of Our Own for my short story, “The Visit”. That particular archive allows guests or signed-in members to leave “kudos” on any story. This is the first time a short story of mine at AO3 has generated such interest and I’m chuffed about it! From the comments, it seems I’ve been able to satisfactorily wrap up a plot thread from the first movie: what happened to Mirage, Syndrome’s helper? If you want to see how you can read it here (the link is in the first sentence), or you can read it at AO3. (It’s also on fanfiction.net.) Have fun!

Finally, chapter four!

In an effort to return to regular writing, I finally reread and tweaked the fourth chapter of Not All Dead and posted it at Archive of Our Own, Fanfiction.net, and here. It means the story is complete at last. I found it a real struggle to finish as I wasn’t sure I’d gone the right way with the chapter but after rereading it, I was actually pleased with what I’d come up with. So, with a touch or two of work, I got it into a form I liked even more and called it done. Having Ralph Dibny as part of The Flash cast this year didn’t help either; though the character is very different (and Sue doesn’t exist yet), Ralph as the Elongated Man is canon. Maybe this story could be considered alternate universe or alternate reality. In any case, I hope you enjoy it!

In my final author’s note, I mention the term “jossed”. That was coined by Joss Whedon fans and denotes a storyline that’s hinted at in canon–giving fanfic writers and fan artists steady inspiration–but takes a left-hand turn which invalidates all that fan speculation.

From TV Tropes (a site that can become a very, very deep rabbit hole and time vacuum):

A fan gets Jossed when the elaborate Epileptic Trees or Fanfic that they’ve lovingly built upon canonical elements is abruptly disproved by further canon or Word of God. Named after Joss WhedonBuffy the Vampire Slayer was notorious for this. Fans would come up with detailed and elaborate theories or plots during summer hiatuses, most of which got completely thrown out within three episodes of the new season.

I have to admit, this little discussion and the multi-verse theory used in the show has given me a touch of inspiration… time to tuck that idea into my plot bunny hutch!

A bit of site housekeeping news.

After a bit of finagling, I’ve managed to make my domain name, tikatu.com, redirect here without, well, the redirect. So, no more starting out on my old homepage; this WordPress build is now the official homepage for my domain. If you have my site bookmarked, you might want to update that.

Still working on my fanfic when I have the time and energy. I’m on Chapter 3, still, and need a bit more dialogue before I move on to Chapter 4. I don’t think the finished story will be 10K words but you never know with me.

One step back

Well, not me taking one step back but fanfiction.net. They added new formatting tools to the user profiles and forum posting windows–including a “source code” button, but removed that one function from the actual document manager. (On the doc manager it was labeled “HTML”.) Do they really think we’re going to want the HTML versions of our forum posts? What were we going to do, post them at live journal? At WordPress? Facebook? Twitter? I can see the possibilities for the profiles; a user could conceivably make their profile standard across boards and archives they frequent. But not the forum posts.

Unfortunately for me, that “source code/HTML” function in the doc manager was one I used a lot.  It made posting my stories in other places (including here) so much easier! I’m not saying that posting here is now totally impossible; I’ve found a HTML converter which works from my Dropbox account. Converting ten files at a time doesn’t take very long. Neither does cleaning up the superfluous code when I use my free HTML editor (from CoffeeCup software–consider this a plug for them). The editor allows for find/replace through all open files, a time-saver to be sure.

Still, the HTML generator at fanfiction.net was easier still. Just export a chapter, toggle the generator, select all, copy, paste into an open Notebook file, and then save. Even with the neat features of my HTML editor, stripping the coding down to the bare formatting essentials still takes time I could use doing other things–like proofing said chapters for undetected SPaG issues. (That’s spelling, punctuation, and grammar, for the uninitiated).

Yeah, I realize Xing and company probably don’t want to facilitate an author’s move to another archive, nor do they have any obligation to offer such a function to the disaffected  (or to those who just want to spread their stories around, like I do).  But they have bigger issues to deal with if they want to keep their unsatisfied clientele–such as deleting plagiarized or copyright infringing stories. Better they focus on those than tweaking a relatively minor section of the entire site.  (I wouldn’t mind them reinstating the source code function for the document manager, either. In for a penny, in for a pound, as it were.)

50060

Yes, I am a winner!

Is the story finished? Do I ever finish a story during NaNo? Nope. Never. Not this time either.

However, should I finish writing, editing, revising, and betareading this one, it’ll show up here at Tikatu’s Corner first. It’s a Thunderbirds fanfic entitled: Guardian Angels, Inc.

I really wish I knew CSS!

Or actually thought before I acted.

First, my primary menu disappeared again. I have no idea why; I’m working in a child theme and all but just like the last time, it went poof! I’ve had to rebuild the verdammt thing all over again! Maybe styling it would help? Might have to try that.

Then I stupidly did a bulk action of delete spam to some comments that a non-functioning Askimet dumped in with the real comments. So now I have only two comments which I’d imported over from my WP.com site. I’m probably going to nuke those, too. Hopefully I’ll start getting comments here–if I ever get this site fully operational!

Waiting on one more beta for the newest chapter of Burning Muses. I’ve been told to make it more lyric, like a dance, but this is Scott Tracy’s voice and, like his father, he’s not given to flowery sentiment. Still, I’ll think about it. This will be the first place I post it!

Beginning to get the hang of this theme thing

I’ve been quiet over the past months as I’ve worked on this site on and off. My goal is to shape this into my writer’s platform, using it to eventually promote my fantasy fiction–eventually being the operative word here. I’m going to replace my personal fanfiction site with this one, too. The original has served me well; unfortunately, my coding skills are not the best and it’s beginning to break down on the actual story pages. The one-shots and smaller chapter stories are already loaded here, as is the poetry. My drabble books are still to come as are the fanfiction novels. The latter will take some time as I’m trying to clean them up before posting; with The White Winds clocking in at 80 chapters and over 350K words, you can imagine this is going to take a while!

So far, I find Sunspot to be a visually appealing theme, so I’ll work with it for the time being. Hopefully I can get my daughter the graphic designer to work a little CSS magic and tweak it to my satisfaction.

I’m still debating whether or not to use this as a personal blog, too, as I have in the past. Many of my earlier posts deal with family as well as writing and I don’t plan on moving those offline. However, I have a family-oriented blog on WordPress.com as well as a livejournal where I can talk about the ins and outs of my personal life. Perhaps asking my writing friends would be a good idea.

In any case, consider this the first post of my writer’s platform! Welcome to my world!

On track

Probably should have posted this yesterday, but … oh well, I’ll edit and put it up today!

First, I’m right on track for word count. Hallelujah! Wednesday, I felt generally run down, ill, and grumpy, to the extent that we ordered comfort food (pizza) instead of what I’d planned for dinner (hot dogs) and I didn’t write a word. I was a full day ahead on word count at that point, so taking the day off didn’t hurt a bit. I’ve been getting out of the house in the afternoon, which helps immensely with my writing productivity. Today, I’m going to haul butt out when the D&D starts later on. I may try to do this every day until the end of Camp. It’s good to not have the chaos of housecleaning, laundry, critters, et al weighing on me.

When this is finished, I want to put it somewhere that my friends can see it and comment as part of the betaing process, but where it would be private and not necessarily considered “first publish”. Fictionpress is absolutely out; I’ve been hanging out at  the fpwatchers group on livejournal and seeing how many stories are plagiarized from there, even published online for cash at Amazon. Besides, that would be considered a first publishing situation. I could put it on my own site and distribute private links to my friends, but how to let them comment? The guestbook I’ve tried to use as a “review board” is FUBAR and no longer supported. I’ve tried Google docs before. Some of my friends had a hard time accessing it. Has anyone done anything with Disqus? How difficult would that be to add to a website and is it flexible enough to use as a review board?

I’m also thinking about consolidating my web presence. Right now I have several blogs; this one, another WordPress blog (for family tidings), my faithful livejournal, a Blogger (for religious issues), a sparkling new tumblr, and of course, Twitter and Facebook. The Facebook is personal, using my real name. The Twitter uses my online handle as does this, the livejournal, and the tumblr. I could easily add a WP blog to my site; that’s one of the apps my web provider offers. I’m trying to decide which way to jump so I can be poised for when I actually need/want to do self-promotion.

So, any ideas? My website needs some serious overhaul in any case!

Oh, and this blog is under an alternate spelling of my online handle, “Tikatu”. Just sayin’.

Crossposted from livejournal and tumblr.

I’m finding that coding my stories is very… therapeutic.

Been working on coding things for my personal fiction site. I’ve finished and posted Mosaic – though that will be updated when the muse strikes – and I’m working on The White Winds. There’s still lots to do, but I’m almost halfway through the chapter formatting. I’ve managed to get it down to a routine. Open the .txt files, put in the chapter coding snippet for each chapter. Scroll down and add the back and forward buttons snippet. Tweak them to the proper chapter numbers. Remove the “next time, next chapter” stuff and paste it in a .txt file. Scroll up; add new title and cut the teasers and disclaimer. Then save as a .shtml file. Leave them all open, find a scene divider and change it with the short horizontal line snippet. Copy that, and do a global replace on all open files. Do a preview skim to make sure things look right, then save and close all. Really, I just did about 15 chapters and it only took an hour or so.

Seriously, the biggest time eater is finding images for the splash pages and writing the foreword. On Mosaic, it took me beyond forever to figure out which screencaps to use (and I found I’d duplicated some from earlier stories), and then the free photos that spoke to the drabbles. For The White Winds, I’ve asked my daughter to update a piece of cast art that she’d done for me earlier. Her artwork has progressed soooo very far that she was embarrassed by the old stuff. Since I’m working so quickly on coding this, I should poke her about that piece.

I’m also trying to decide if I should add my two non-Thunderbirds one-shots to the One Shots book. I’ve done one for The Incredibles, and one for Disney’s Beauty and the Beast. My fanfiction is so heavily Thunderbirds-oriented, but these deserve a home, too. (They are posted on ff.net and on FanNation.) Tell me what you think about that.

In other writing news, I’ve pulled most of my work from Lunaescence Archives. I have several reasons for this. Things that were broken aren’t being fixed is one of them (thinking of forum registration here), but an increasing dissatisfaction with the way the archive is being run, and the ever-stronger skew toward anime and manga (and reader-insert) stories are probably stronger reasons. I’m sad about this, really; so many archives tend to go downhill once their owners are no longer involved in running and upgrading them. And now this has happened (IMHO) to Luna. (Yes, this puts me in mind of Thunderbirds Central, and parts of IR:TNP that need updating, too.)

As far as my personal “cyberstalker” (Lillehafrue’s term) is concerned, I haven’t heard from her again. Hopefully, I never will.

Back to the HTML editor, Batman!