Sunday, August 11, 2013

A Peek Beneath the Duct Tape: Sleepwalkers, Chapter 7

Let's start today with Zane. It took me a long time to pin down his personality; he seemed as mysterious to me as he is to the rest of the characters in the story. I originally envisioned him as a wunderkind who came out of nowhere and became a major player in the novel; but the role never seemed to fit him. I've said before that some of my characters write themselves (Wizard is the perfect example), and it felt like Zane was resisting my efforts to make him a hero. I just couldn't figure out what he really was until I got to this chapter. I wouldn't call him an antihero, but he has a dark side he's not proud of. That's part of what makes him a loner.

Ian turned out to have a dark side too, didn't he? As a matter of fact, my non-fetishist beta reader (the friendly neighborhood orc) was deeply offended by the first draft of this chapter. I suppose EMC fetishists take revenge scenes for granted since our fetish lends itself so well to that fantasy. But the orc helped me remember I was writing a novel and not just a stroke story. He didn't talk me into dropping the scene, but his reaction caused me to me tone it down, give Ian more motivation, and show other characters' discomfort with Ian's actions.

Now let's talk about Wizard. This blog post, which I wrote back in January, was about the situation with her failsafe. It's all perfectly clear now, eh? I just hope you could follow what she did. I had to rewrite that section a lot. Let me know if you didn't get it and I'll do my best to explain.

Here's another note about Wizard. I've intentionally kept her isolated from the friendly characters in the story (Even her interactions with Linda take place "offscreen."). I've also intentionally kept her in darkness most of the time. She's lived with loneliness and hardship her whole life, and they've made her who she is...not that she likes dealing with them. She'd prefer to be out in the sun, healthy, and among friends. But at least she has one out of the three now.

As for Shara, well, what can I say? You all saw it coming. The next chapter will be an even bigger nail-biter than Chapter 4.


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Ooooohh, i'm biting my nails already, i just HATE it when you get hooked on a story so much that even when you want to detach yourself from it, (for fear that some of the characters you've become enthralled on, something bad happens to them), you just cant, I've been cheering for the resistance up to now, but still buzzing over the two most sensually insidious conversion/moral changes since Tabico's (Compromise)aka Shara, & Shara's imprinting of Wizard...(hot hot hot)...if this was a movie? i'd pay for it, a whole lot of subversion/conversions going on, Usually in stories like this i want the good guys to lose, but i hope in the end that the bad guys lose, & the good guys win (with more females converted of course)...good story!!!

Uzobono said...

There's only a *smidge* of author's that I actually get excited about reading, and you and Tabico are definitely my faves :).

Actually Compromise is probably my favorite story in the archive, but Sleepwalkers is comign *really* close, if only because Compromise refuses to be finished :p!

Also, I do agree that a *great* emc story, stands on it's own. If I take *all* the sexual stuff out of many of your stories, or Tabico's, Tribly's (and a couple of others) they would *still* stand as just jaw dropping stories.

I can't stress enough to other authors to just get *really* creative and build characters up to where you *care* about them, as well as just populating the world(s) they live in so you could imagine *so* many more stories taking place after the current one is done.

Oh and I'm not sure if you'd *want* to give anything away, but seeing as there's 4 chapters left, are *all* of them the same length more or less, or is the final stretch longer in terms of explaining bits and pieces?

(It's just a personal peeve of mine when authors *do* kinda rush endings :p).

thrall said...

Thanks to both of you! I'm also flattered to be compared with Tabico and trilby - and yes, I love "Compromise," too. I'm glad Tabico has stopped at a good point with that one. I feel like it's finished, even though it isn't quite.

Uzobono, I don't mind telling you about the length of the chapters. They're roughly the same length, but Chapter 11 is slightly longer because I wanted to provide proper closure. I promise you won't feel like it's rushed!

magic9mushroom said...
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magic9mushroom said...

Funnily enough, "Sleepwalkers" is a story I don't find hot at all, mostly because Hawthorne's a bitch and her shadow stretches over the whole story. She's not the "strong, lusty, red-eyed devil" that I love to imagine submitting to - she's a bureaucrat who got lucky, a "flabby, pretending, weak-eyed devil".

It's still well-written, with some interesting ideas (even if some of the science does make me want to tear my hair out) and compelling characters, and certainly a whole bucketload of tension that has me waiting eagerly for its conclusion... but I certainly wouldn't call it "hot".

thrall said...

Well, I don't know about "flabby." ;-P But Hawthorne's definitely not someone I'd want to submit to. That's why I keep saying this is a novel rather than stroke. She's an outright villain, and you're supposed to root against her.

As for the science, I was afraid that people who know a lot about that would find nitpicks, but I did the best I could. ;-) And I did research genetics a bit! My hope is that the average reader won't know enough to call bullshit on anything, and that the ones who do know enough to call bullshit will be able to suspend their disbelief.