So it’s like 4:21am where I’m at right now and I can’t sleep. Have to do a bunch of irl paperwork stuff and I hate paperwork. I haven’t finished the next scene yet but here are some notes I made for myself:
-Replace the fountain with something like “The Ever-Deleting First Sentence” where it’s a fountain in the shape of a writer and you just see first sentences/paragraphs being written and deleted over and over again as the water. Need to think of that a bit more but it’s the basic right concept. Way better than a fountain that just shoots out water *gag*
-Definitely need to replace the first chapter with the Bechdel breakfast feast scene, establish the Halflings, their point of view and show Aliss as the connected/coercive type working to get what she wants for their support.
-Ariel needs to have cybernetic legs that had some kind of incredibly dangerous power source that she used to beat the bad guy in her first novel “The Witchopus” and Aliss wants her to use it except she admits it was removed after a really damaging tweet storm from Neil Degrasse Tyson. There are these really terrible but fun post apocalyptic Disney Princess novels my wife likes and I can have her basically be that. Also it makes me laugh that someone saying “The real power was inside all along, I just had to believe in myself” could be referring to a chunk of ultra refined uranium or something.
-Sell the idea that the C’s are random and mercurial more. Everyone sits around waiting to see if they hear a bell. They don’t have school every day. The C’s strike terror into the groups by being random.
-Need more 1984’esque lines but fun. Like how the modern conception of bravery is doing the right thing when there’s absolutely no cost to yourself. Or friendship meaning that you never have to tell someone something they don’t want to hear. Or “I have never hesitated to do the right thing in front of a camera.”
-Need to give Aliss’ writer a name and I haven’t decided how much I want to do a self-insert there. I’m obviously not a lesbian cop but it would be funny if I just pasted real absurd stuff from my life into the author bio so when people say things like “oh really, like people have Micronesian step-fathers who are also white supremacists?” I can say “Yes, they do.” Thinking of writing a quick piece on that for Hobart Pulp since I think that place should probably be supported since I always complain that everyone in publishing is either a pedophile or a nazi. Might as well support a mildly nuts liberal since I want them to be empowered.
-The dialogue in the last scene sucked and I think it’s because the world I know I need to write in is a lot different than the one I’m writing in now. Might need to go back and do rewrites before I go further. Have more fun with Merriam and the Saurus. Merriam should be keeping meeting minutes.
-I’m not even sure what the events will be to be honest but I know they need to receive a macguffin that lets them see the real world. I want to say they’ll have to do something like “Show which of these beloved classics is the most racist” except the “right” answer will be to show that they are all racist.
-Make sure people are doing something every scene even if it’s not fighting. The background needs to be interesting too. Don’t neglect the world/relationships outside the two people talking.
-Introduce what happened to Imagination with Harvey Kettle in prologue. How much do I want to delve into white space?
Wait what? Who? Me? Uh...
I mean, I don't have much to say yet other than I'm enjoying the story, I feel like it has legs, and I'm glad I signed on for the ride especially as I'm an aspiring writer myself. It feels wrong to critique anything in particular because I know it's a first draft that you're literally editing in real time. The only thing I have right now is that it ultimately should start a lot more slowly. Maybe having the school feel more real until the point where you realize it's floating in this liminal imagination space? I'm reading "Strange the Dreamer" right now and some people have grumbled about the slow start but it wouldn't work at all without the slow start. Indeed it still moves too quickly, as far as I'm concerned.
(Since I'm here: you did mention that some other genre writing by you was floating around on the Internet. I would be interested in reading it.)
This YA series adapted for Netflix costars very famous actors: Charlize Theron, Kerry Washington, Laurence Fishburne, and Michelle Yeoh. It’s uh something.