Sunday, 22 September 2013

September Update - 'Project 17' and 'NaNoWriMo'

It's been a while since I last threw anything up on Writer's Unblock. As usual, I'm going to fall back on the age-old excuses of work and other commitments keeping me too busy to update this blog, but we all know that's a thinly-veiled attempt to disguise yet another prolonged period of procrastination. In this brief returning post, I just want to address a couple of points and fill you all in on what will be going on with me for the remainder of the year.

First off, I need to say sorry. To those of you who were waiting on the last few entries for Project: Create 2013, I apologise. I tried to use my last few days to write a lengthy short story set in the same world as The Hawker, and failed spectacularly. As a result, I don't have anything to show for days twenty-seven through thirty-one of the project. If that makes either me or it a failure, then so be it, but I had a lot of fun working on creative ideas throughout July. I'm a little gutted I didn't see it through, but the rewarding feeling of accomplishment from all the things I did create far outweighs that.

Most of my creative energy has been poured into writing music rather than prose these last couple of months. This is all with a view to completing my solo song cycle, Project 17, an ambition that's now closer to fruition than ever. With all but one of the twelve envisioned tracks nearing completion both musically and lyrically, I've been thinking about the next stage of turning ideas into something tangible - recording. I have some time off work in October, and I've managed to book some time in a local rehearsal studio with a view to laying down at least the music for the project. I still have a lot of prep work to do, but most of that just involves getting hold of some more equipment, picking guitar tones, and finalising what's already there. Only one song still needs significant work at this point, and I'm confident I can get it to the same standard as the other material by next month.

I've got two four-hour sessions in which I'm hoping to record all the 'core' music for the album. Vocals and guitar solos will probably be overdubbed later on. When everything's recorded, I'll be aiming to mix the tracks down and finalise everything with a view to digitally releasing the album. The price will most likely be absolutely free - although I've incurred a few costs in making it, I don't have any desire to recoup them. It's been much more a cathartic exercise for me, a means of addressing the events of the last few years of my life that I would probably be doing in some other form, if not music. As soon as it's finished and available for download, I'll be sure to let you know through Writer's Unblock. Hopefully it'll be done and dusted some time in November.

Speaking of November, I'm also planning to take part in something called National Novel Writing Month (or 'NaNoWriMo' for short) in this year's penultimate month. Yes, I know it's an American thing, so technically my participation doesn't conform to the 'National' part of the challenge, but to Hell with such technicalities! Taking inspiration from the mentality instilled in me by the 'create-something-every-day' premise of Project: Create, I'm eager to apply the same concept to putting together a short novel. At its most basic, the challenge tasks writers with putting together a 50,000-word manuscript in the thirty days of November. It's something I'm really keen to attempt, and I'm hoping that I'll end up writing at least more regularly (if not more prolifically) off the back of it. I have a couple of tentative ideas that I could explore for NaNoWriMo, and I'll be sure to give you more specific details about it nearer the time.

Finally, there's the matter of my Giant Bomb blog. As of writing this, I've not written anything video game-related in over two months, a stretch of time that I'm fairly sure makes for my longest ever hiatus as a Giant Bomb blogger. I'm hoping to address the matter soon with a brief, recap-style blog not dissimilar to this one (albeit with a few more mentions of high-scores, boss battles and whatnot), and after that I intend to go back to maintaining a fairly regular blogging presence on my favourite video game website. With Grand Theft Auto V in my Xbox 360, Pok√©mon X and Y just around the corner, and my end-of-year awards to start considering, I'm sure I'll have plenty to write about.

I'm sorry it's taken me so long to write this, and I'm sorry that it ultimately says so little. I'm just hoping that everything it mentions will serve to make amends for my laziness in the remaining months of 2013. Thanks very much for reading, and I'll see you around.

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