It appears that I was tagged by Dreamaniacal
. Oh joy!
So, it looks like you get to see my take on my own writing.
1. Tell us about your favorite writing project/universe that you've worked with and why.
The majority of settings I do are some variation of the world we live in. My favorite project thus far has been Hringur. It's been wonderful to write. I like the setting, because it has the literary style of a fantasy world, but the daring and heroic exploits of the characters all have the inanity of everyday life.
The setting of my DnD campaign takes a very close second. The world is one where the existence of gods has led to a massive technology and power struggle amongst humans, who are being used as a means of political warfare by angels and demons.
2. How many characters do you have? Do you prefer males or females?
I honestly have no idea how many characters I have. I enjoy making minor characters frequently and seeing how much I can make them stand out. It's my belief that characters are only protagonists because the narrative follows them, not because they're better designed than the rest of the world.
I have a great many more male characters than female ones. I suppose the reason for it is that a lot of my narrative is driven by character's internal conflicts and ideas, and I'm a lot more comfortable writing such conflicts for males.
Also, surrealism seems to work a lot better for male characters, given how simple the average male mentality is. Female characters always seem to have enough emotional traits that surrealism always has some sort of meaning, which weakens the effect greatly.
Or, you could accept the fact that I'm a Gentlemen, and thus more inclined to write about other Gentlemen.
3. How do you come up with names, for characters (and for places if you're writing about fictional places)?
Usually, I just give the first name that comes to mind. In event of a work such a Hringur, many of the characters have some sort of joke behind their names or titles.
For my more surreal pieces, I pick the names that I think best embody the atmosphere I want the character to have.
For my fanfictions, my names are usually the names of real life people. Sometimes modified to sound a little cooler.
4. Tell us about one of your first stories/characters!
God, I can barely remember back so far. The first story I actually wrote in any sort of recordable medium was one of an alien knight, who explored space. His encounters put him against a few arbitrarily evil enemies with some glaring logical flaws. My protagonist also had the ability to solve just about any problem without any tension.
I would like to think I've gotten better at writing since then.
5. By age, who is your youngest character? Oldest? How about "youngest"?
Youngest: Clone 112. He's only alive for a few days before his story begins.
Hmm. It's occurred to me that you haven't read that story yet....
I may just have to put it on here...
Oldest: Either Kyle, from The Mourning After, or The Phoenix.
Kyle has been living the same day over and over again, making his age many years past how old he should be. The Phoenix has been alive for several thousand years, hooked up to an overly complex machine that keeps him alive.
Of course, he's remarkably buff, so his really long life could just be a result of being healthy.
6. Where are you most comfortable writing? At what time of day? Computer or good ol' pen and paper?
I have horrible handwriting and an amazing typing speed, so computer it is. I can write just about any time of day or at any place, but I seem to get the best results writing at home during the obnoxiously early hours of the morning.
7. Do you listen to music while you write? What kind? Are there any songs you like to relate/apply to your characters?
I always listen to music while I write. I like to listen a song that I think establishes the setting and try to incorporate the song's atmosphere of tempo into the writing itself.
I like to assign my characters themes too.
8. What's your favorite genre to write? To read?
Writing, I have no idea. I seem to have fallen into the horror niche, but I'm still not sure.
Reading, I'm all over the place. I'll read just about anything, given that it's written well enough. I do have a soft spot for good horror though. I like series that can be wrapped up within a small amount of books, but still have the same effect as an entire series of a different genre.
9. How do you get ideas for your characters? Describe the process of creating them.
I make up the majority of my main characters as some sort of means of relating the plot to the setting. Supporting characters are either created because they compliment (or contrast) the main character, or to establish something within the setting.
I start by thinking of the general series of events I want to happen, before figuring out who would be the best character for all of them to happen to. Then, I just repeat the process for supporting characters.
10. What are some really weird situations your characters have been in? Everything from serious canon scenes to meme questions counts!
I think Njáll Njálsson and Eyjólfur Dagfinnsson take the cake for weirdest situations. During the course of the book, the two steal several national treasures, cause the death of a technopop band, sink an entire town's industry, get held hostage by a thin blooded day worker and make several snarky comments towards the work's narrative.
Close contenders do include Andre, Niko and Elliot from Acceleration Glory! They find themselves in an epic showdown in a sushi bar, caught in an explosion and chasing a middle aged nobleman mugger.
11. Who is your favorite character to write? Least favorite?
For whatever reason, I love writing Mark from Acceleration Glory! Something about his habits and relation to the rest of the story appeal to me.
I can't really say I have a least favorite character, although Lilja from Hringur does get a mention. I think I lampshade how she doesn't seem to get much attention from the narrative.
12. In what story did you feel you did the best job of world building?
As funny as it might sound, I love my world building for Acceleration Glory! While it is fanfiction, I think I at least made a noble effort to explain many things about the setting that were never touched in the source material.
Last Lights was fun for me too, just because of how much the world itself clashed with the atmosphere.
Hmmm, you haven't read Last Lights, have you?
I think I may upload it after I edit it a little.
13. What's your favorite culture to write, fictional or not?
I love Norse societies. Ask anyone.
14. How do you map out locations, if needed? Do you have any to show us?
I don't, actually. When adding new locations, I just tack them on to what I previously have. While a chain of events may be greatly planned out before I start writing something, where said chain will happen almost never is.
15. Mid way question! Tell us about a writer you admire, whether professional or not!
This is a hard one. I have to say that I would be lying if I said I disliked XIVcaliber
and his work. He does an amazing job of building settings, something I don't think I'm able to do all too well.
16. Do you write romantic relationships? How do you do with those, and how "far" are you willing to go in your writing?
When I do romance, it's either the central focus of the story, or it's only present for narrative or comic relief. I wouldn't call myself bad at them, but I think my ideas of romance are a little unusual.
I'm willing to go as far as the characters are, really.
17. Favorite protagonist and why!
This is a tough one.
I would have to settle with either Kyle, of The Mourning After, or 112 of The Last Lights.
I like Kyle, just because he has no real heroic traits about him. He's simply someone who had the misfortune of being caught within one of the most horrible settings imaginable, and is coping with it in his own unique ways.
112 is the total opposite of Kyle in that regard. He's a warrior caught in a world much bigger than himself, and is doing his best to carve out a place for himself as best he can.
Huh. Yep. Last Lights is getting uploaded.
18. Favorite antagonist and why!
Sumarliði Margeirsson takes the cake on this one with no trouble at all. While I don't want to spoil too much, he's really, really, evil.
But at the same time, really, really not.
19. Favorite minor that decided to shove themselves into the spotlight and why!
Luc (from Acceleration Glory!) has gotten some really interesting feedback from the readers. I sort of like writing for him, just because he's a really simple and ineffectual character who is doing his best to establish himself as a serious part of the story.
20. What are your favorite character interactions to write?
Klaus and Dieter. The two have a brotherly love that can only be forged after many years of playing techno music and fighting Swiss people.
Often at the same time.
21. Do any of your characters have children? How well do you write them?
A few of my characters do, but I don't really like them. What usually ends up happening is that the children either become totally forgotten, or the entire focus of the parent's character, both of which I don't like happening.
22. How long does it usually take you to complete an entire storyfrom planning to writing to posting (if you post your work)?
It really depends. I don't have any regular time. Typing speed is almost never a limiting factor, so it really depends on how naturally the story comes to me.
When I write a short story, I usually just sit down and write it.
If I'm doing something based on installments, I plan out the next chapter while I'm writing the current one.
Hringur, on the other hand, was the result of much careful planning and a lot of structured writing.
23. How willing are you to kill your characters if the plot so demands it? What's the most interesting way you've killed someone?
I kill off characters all the time. Frequently, the plot doesn't necessarily demand it, but it furthered by the character's deaths. I am of the belief that the ten seconds of a character's death can mean more than all the many years of their life.
24. Do any of your characters have pets? Tell us about them.
Huh, come to think of it, none of my characters have pets. Weird.
25. Let's talk art! Do you draw your characters? Do others draw them? Pick one of your OCs and post your favorite picture of him!
I have no drawing ability at all, so I never draw my characters. Dreamaniacal
is occasionally willing to draw them for me.
I happen to rather like the picture of Jake from Acceleration Glory!
Probably just because it's the only picture of one of my characters on here.
You can find it here. fav.me/d2y46zc
26. Along similar lines, do appearances play a big role in your stories? Tell us about them, or if not, how you go about designing your characters.
It's a toss up. A lot of my characters are defined more by their inner thoughts and narratives more than their appearances, but I do like having a character with interesting visuals or a unique visual design. It really depends on the character. Some are more cosmetically driven than others.
27. Have you ever written a character with physical or mental disabilities? Describe them, and if there's nothing major to speak of, tell us a few smaller ones.
I'm pretty sure Njáll Njálsson has Narcolepsy.
28. Final question! Tag someone! And tell us what you like about that person as a writer and/or about one of his/her characters!
Uhm. Everyone that I actually read the work of on here was tagged when Dreamaniacal
did this survey...
Oh, by the way:Andre couldn't help but quiver in a expectant fear as the curtains began to draw back. He took a second to adjust his mask for the thousandth time, not wanting to be disqualified before he could put on a show for the rest of the crowd. His hand tensed around his Disc as his opponent finally came into view.
Due to the obstructing nature of the area, Andre couldn't help but make out the figure's height. The figure was just a little shorter than Andre. From the shadow that the figure cast against the velvet curtain, Andre guessed that the figure had shoulder length hair.
A standard issue disc, much like the one Andre was holding decorated the figure's arm. Both Andre and his opponent would be going into the match blind. Andre couldn't help but wonder if Niko and Elliot were feeling the exact same kind of tension. They most likely were.
Andre tensed up as the starting bell echoed throughout the adjacent room. He and his opponent exchanged a brief nod before instantly grabbing the top five cards of their decks. Both could feel the eyes of countless spectators upon them, and each was more than enthused to give the watchers one memorable show...