Following Sleeping in Cyberspace #4: FINISHED WITH THE FIRST DRAFT! (+ looking for potential beta readers)

Hi, Kivessa today, mostly, although all of us are here, because—draft one is finished!  You can see the wordcount bar to the left is all filled up.

The story did end up being shorter than any of us expected (Morgan was originally going for ~75k), but the resulting 61k is not a disappointment, and we’re in fact very excited!

It’s been a long time.  Morgan started our story the first time for Camp NaNo…a while ago.  I don’t have any idea what year it was.  It didn’t work, so she put it aside, and then she came back to it at the end of last year and started again at the beginning either sometime late last year or early this year, I don’t remember.

Anyway, it’s been a long time.  She took forever.

But we’re done!

The story is written, from beginning to end, and it’s done.

Okay, I’m honestly just looking forward to taking a vacation now.

Anyways, though, the story isn’t obviously actually done, because that was only draft one, and we have inconsistencies and unresearched things and probably plot holes or some other kind of emergency.

So Morgan is looking for a few beta readers who’d be willing to go through the story and help her critique.  If you’re interested, send Morgan an email (which can be found on the contact page).


In other news…

Does this affect the blog at all?

And the answer is…not really.  We’re not gone, we’re just done with draft one, and there’s still all the editing and chaos to do in the future.

What’s Morgan writing next and do we get to see any new characters on the blog?

That part is still…undecided.  There is a new story, tentatively titled Realms, as you can see in the wordcount bars on the right, with new characters never before seen on this blog, but whether or not Morgan introduces them here hasn’t been decided.

Following Sleeping in Cyberspace #3: Excerpts!

To make up for the shortness of yesterday’s post (thanks, Dazant), here’s another Following Cyberspace post, and this time, we’re sharing an excerpt!  Actually, we’ve got two.  That’s all.


Excerpt 1:

The next morning, the sun was cheerful and bright and it promised—so loudly it felt like a threat—that today was a new day, cleansed of yesterday’s problems.

The boys both slept in, so Kivessa decided without them that today was going to be about perfecting their disguises.  She started by trimming her hair, which was a completely different kind of challenge than cutting her brothers’ hair had been.  Then she went through all of the food they had, looking for something that would make a more substantial breakfast than just the fruit that was all they’d had of late.

She had come up with absolutely nothing and was very frustrated about it when Dazant appeared in the kitchen doorway, with mussed hair and an expression that indicated he wasn’t really awake yet.

“We need breakfast,” Kivessa told him. “I think we need something sugary.”

“Sugary?” Dazant repeated sleepily. He blinked at her, clearly not comprehending. “What are you suggesting?”

“I’m suggesting that while Cev is still asleep, we go get breakfast.  Steal some pastries or donuts or something—or better yet, we get some flour and eggs and Cev can help me bake something, assuming the oven here still works.” She gestured at the oven to her left.

Dazant frowned at her, but before he could argue, she said, “Alternatively, we wake Cev up and go steal some breakfast with him.”

His frown deepened.  “Why don’t we eat what’s already here?”

“Absolutely not.  A good breakfast is essential to…everything.”

“Since when?  And how is ‘something sugary’ a good breakfast?”  He made quotation marks with his fingers.

Kivessa waved her hand annoyedly at him, then paused, thinking maybe if she explained what she was thinking, he would probably agree with her.  She peeked around the doorway to make sure Ceveth hadn’t woken, and he hadn’t.  “You do know that the way we start the morning off—which includes breakfast—can affect the entire day.  So if we make breakfast a little more special…” She gestured with her hands, struggling to find the words to express what she was thinking.

To her dismay, Dazant frowned deeper even further.  “You’re trying to distract him.”

“Well, yes—”

“That didn’t work yesterday.  He sat in the corner all evening, ignoring you.”

Kivessa crossed her arms and glared at him, annoyed both that he had to bring that up again, and that he was so immediately against her trying to make things better.  “Well, if you have a better idea—”

Dazant peered around the doorway towards Ceveth’s sleeping form.  He didn’t say anything for a while, and when Kivessa opened her mouth, he lifted a hand.  She rolled her eyes, and obligingly stayed quiet.

Ceveth inhaled, and exhaled again—breathing the slow, measured breaths of sleep.

Finally, Dazant looked at her again.  “You’re right; we should do something.  Do you really think making breakfast is going to help?”

“I’m not sure what else to do.  It won’t hurt to eat something different, at least.”

“Fine.”


Excerpt 2:

Ceveth sat down on the floor next to Dazant, mimicking his cross-legged posture.  Dazant glanced at him.

“How’re you feeling?”

“Fine,” came the automatic response.  Ceveth paused.  “Better than I was expecting to be.  My nap was okay.”

“Good.”

Dazant looked at the wall again.

Ceveth hesitated.  “Are you okay?”

Dazant frowned, like this was a ridiculous question.  “I’m fine.”

Both paused, slowly realizing that it was the same answer Ceveth always gave, and it was never true when he said it.  Ceveth realized it wasn’t really true when Dazant said it, either.

“Should you nap, too?”

“No.”

“Okay.  Where’s Ki?”

“On the floor, asleep.”  Dazant pointed over his shoulder without looking.  Ceveth glanced back, and there she was.  She wasn’t on the chair like she had been when Ceveth fell asleep, but instead curled up on the floor in front of it.  She didn’t really look comfortable. |

Ceveth glanced at Dazant again.  His gaze had gone a little spacey, as if he wasn’t really there.  His mind was elsewhere.

“Daz?”

He startled.  “What?”

“You look like you’re going to fall asleep.”

“I’m fine, Cev.”

“You don’t look fine.”

He really didn’t, and it made Ceveth feel uneasy.  First there had been their morning in the tunnels, which was already bad enough, but then Kivessa had completely ignored the both of them and now Dazant didn’t look…right.  Dazant was always okay.  When Ceveth wasn’t, when he had his nightmares and his flashbacks and his panic attacks, Dazant was always okay.  He couldn’t not be okay.

Following Sleeping in Cyberspace #1: All the Stuff You Already Know from “Following Oracular #1” & Other New Stuff

So you know what’s unfair?  What’s unfair is everybody talking about Oracular when Morgan is, in fact, writing Sleeping in Cyberspace.  We’re rectifying that, however, and…now you get a dual blog post series, one about Oracular and one about Cyberspace, depending on which one was more apparent in Morgan’s brain that week.

(You’ll probably see more of us in the immediate future, as Morgan scrambles to finish draft one by the end of the year, hopefully.)

Anyhow, I’m Kivessa, and I’m going to tell you all about my story!


The Concept:

Science fiction set ~120 years in the future + elements of a Sleeping Beauty retelling + artificial intelligence that already rules the world + a really crazy heist + three siblings with complex relationships + running jokes about fedoras = Sleeping in Cyberspace

Ceveth laughs a little bit.  “That doesn’t even touch on any of the emotions of the story.”

Well, that’s true.  There’s also a lot of emotions.  One of us has really bad anxiety.  Another of us is a control-freak.

“And the last one of us?” Dazant asks.

Oh, well, yeah, and then there’s me.  I…am slightly underdeveloped.

The Concept in an Official-Ish-Sounding Blurb Form Instead of a Math Equation:

Fifteen year old Ceveth lives in a world where the artificial intelligence already has control of the world, having turned the United Council into a figurehead.  One of its most famous actions was to nearly purge the world of criminals, by creating a near-perfect police force.

This means that former thief Ceveth and his two older siblings have no chance of redeeming themselves.  The best they can do is evade arrest and struggle to survive, and even that, at times, is near impossible.

Then one day, the siblings are contacted by someone who promises them freedom.  A clean slate; a brand new start to their lives.  And all it asks in return is that they commit one more theft and steal an item from the most hi-tech bank in the city.

Or, basically, the world is ruled by an AI, which really wants to throw us in prison, but we really don’t want to go to prison.  Then Ceveth starts hearing this weird voice identifying itself as Izi in his bionic ear.  Izi doesn’t tell us anything about herself, and doesn’t even let us meet her, choosing instead to only contact us through messages on our tablets, but she tells us that if we don’t break into the bank and steal some item that she won’t actually identify for us, she’ll have us thrown into prison anyway.


The Characters:

Ceveth:

Um. Hi.  Uh… I’m Cev.  I am really good with computers (well, tablets are what we use nowadays), and I love music.  I have anxiety and panic attacks and nightmares and…yeah.  I really love music, though.  All kinds.

Dazant:

Of the three of us, I’m the oldest, so I have to keep us together and safe.  I…can sometimes be over-protective, but it’s for their own good.

Kivessa:

Dazant makes everything happen; I make it all go smoothly. I help the boys hold themselves together.  Which often means arguing with Dazant, but

Izi:

I am not interested in talking about myself here.

Dazant sputters annoyedly.  “Of course not.  Here’s what you need to know about Izi.  She—if it is a she, since there’s been no confirmation from her—doesn’t answer any of your questions unless it specifically interests her, and even then, she’ll probably say something useless.”

Izi does not protest to this statement.


So, there’s us.  What do ya’ll think?

Ceveth looks like he’s about to laugh.  “Ki, did you just say ‘ya’ll’?”

Yeah, I guess I did.