Siege By Rhiannon Frater

When I first started looking into zombie fiction it was mainly audio and I listened to one by, I believe, a Spanish writer. It was okay, but didn’t really blow me away. The fact I can’t remember who it was and the name of the book speaks volumes. Then I come across two others, first was Zombie Fallout by Mark Tufo, and then there was The First Days by Rhiannon Frater.

Siege is the third, and I believe final, book in Frater’s As The World Dies series, and is a good ending to it.

I liked how Frater wasn’t afraid to change it up in some quite big ways throughout the story. There was one huge moment were I actually rewound the audio to make sure what had happened, did in fact happen.

I will admit I’d held off listening to this as how the second book ended opened up a storyline that i wasn’t to sure I’d like, and I regret that decision. The storyline in question opened up the universe a little, and was dealt with really well and wasn’t taken where I thought it was going to go.

The endgame of this story felt very real. I could imagine it was what real people would at least attempt.

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Good Morning 1-5-17

It’s a bank holiday here in the UK so that means we get an extra day off. So instead of rushing around getting ready for work I’m sitting in my pjs and dressing gown drinking tea and faffing about on the internet.

What am I going to do with my extra day off? I am going to do a little writing, and then play some video games. I want to get back in the habit of doing about a 1000 words a day and as I’m working on a short story at the moment and this fanfic edit I think I’ll be able to do that.

I’ve got a quick update on The Space Watch: Owen has been through it, and we sat down yesterday and went through his points. His two biggest are things I don’t necessarily agree with, one being the ending. He’s working on rewriting that and the other is a world building detail for an alien species that he has created and done a lot of work on developing. This species is kind of his baby and he’s got very specific concepts for how this species is. So once I’ve finished this short story I’m going to get into making the changes and then hopefully we’ll be nearing a point where we can get it off to Beta readers. That said, Owen did bring up a few continuity issues. This mainly stems from where we’ve changed characters ranks to suit their positions in the story better. As Owen brought this up I’m going to be a little more fine toothed when I go through it with these changes and hopefully I’ll catch most of those irregularities.

Right, my laptop battery is down to 5% so I’m wrapping this and firing up my desktop. I’ll check back in this evening. I’m going to try and get back in the habit of blogging daily with my progress.

Looking To 2015

I’ll just mention my words from the last two days. Yesterday I managed 933 but it was a struggle, today I’ve gotten 1321 words done and it felt a lot easier and much lees of a struggle.

Now, to what I’d like to achieve this coming year. I think my first priority is to get Earth, After Liberation and it’s sequel, Oppression, finished. I’m 33,000 words into the Earth, After Liberation re-write. I’d like to say I’m half-way through it but my 60,000 word target is a soft one and very flexible as the story will be as long as it needs to be. With Oppression I’ve all but decided to re-write it as well. I think it’s pretty good but I’m going to need to change a lot so it fits into the world I’m building with Earth, After Liberation. I could go and retro-fit it all but I’ve tried to do that before and it really doesn’t work for me, I’m finding re-writing is a much more efficient way for me to work. Now, depending on how the second book comes out in the re-write will decide on whether I make this into a trilogy or not. That was my original plan but as I was trying to get words for the 50k that is NaNoWriMo I found the story came to an end. Now if I can work the re-write out so that I have between 45,000-60,000 words without wrapping up the details then I’ll look to write a third, and final book that focuses on these core characters. I’ll only do that though if I have enough story for a third book, I’m not going to write three books with these characters just so I can say it’s a trilogy.

Earth, After Liberation should hopefully be done by February, hopefully. Then I’m tempted to jump straight into the re-write of Oppression. Owen and I were hoping to start the re-write of Project Apollo on February 1st but I’ve got a feeling that may not be a realistic ambition. Apollo is a big and complicated story and I’m not sure we can outline two thirds of the story in a month.

Owen and I have talked about more stories in this universe and I think we’ll be writing a few synopsis’ for these so we can make sure they tie in together when and where we need them too.

Another goal for the early part of this year is to get my vampire collection tidied up. I’ve had one Beta Reader’s notes back. Another is still looking at it, and i have one other person I really want to look at it, but they’ve just moved house and got their hands full getting settled in. I’ve got a date in mind that I want to release it, but again, thats a soft target. This collection has been five years in the making, holding it off a little longer isn’t going to make much difference to the book.

Brainstorming of The Residents is pretty thorough at the moment, and I think the next stage will be to start working on a timeline. There’s a few things that we’re waiting to sort out before that, but the story is looking pretty good 😉 I’d like to write more about what we’ve got planned, but that’ll be spoiling it 😛

I’ve got a zombie novella that I’d like to write this year as well. I’m thinking it’ll be about 30,000 word or so. I’ll write that for NaNoWriMo if I don’t write that third book I mentioned earlier in the post. The zombie story is roughly thought out but needs outlining and character work. The story is quite simply but the rest of the setting needs building up some before I make a start. If I don’t write it for NaNo I’ll try and squeeze it in at some stage.

Getting a few short stories written and submitted is also a goal for the year, but those will be more of a back burner item. I want to focus on getting some longer pieces completed.

There it is, my rough goals for the year. I deliberately didn’t mention much about publications. I am hoping to have my vampire collection out this year, I’d like to think Earth, After Liberation and Oppression will be close to being ready too, but I’ve made promises to self-publish before now and I’ve failed in those promises. Before I even think about announcing any dates, I’m going to have the story in mind edited, cover art done and formatted. So I’m not rushing to get everything together in a time frame.

A Quickie Before I Write Some More

It feels like forever since I wrote a post here, it has only been a few days though. In that time I have written 2700 words. I know a lot of people hate word counts but I love them. I think they’re a great way to track progress and I love the feeling when I realise that I’ve broken a certain amount of words in a sitting. Anyway all of those words were on Project Apollo which is feeling really energised now and I’m a bit annoyed if I’m honest that I’m writing this post instead of working on it but I feel I need to get a post written and out onto the web 🙂

With my attention on Project Apollo very little has been done in other areas. I’ve not looked at The Residents at all nor my Zombie project or any shorter bits I need to tidy up. I will pick up the pace on those but I really want to get this draft done as the words are coming out okay at the moment.

Right I think that’s enough rambling for one post, I’m off to write. Have a great weekend everyone 🙂

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Movie Review: World War Z

***Minor Spoilers***

Hey guys I just thought I’d share a few quick thoughts on World War Z. It was good, but don’t go into it expecting to see a movie with lots of blood and guts and any real reference to the book. As I watched it I noticed a couple of minor references to the book. It felt like they were after thoughts to be honest. If you’ve read I Am Legend by the late Richard Matheson and then seen the Will Smith movie of the same name you’ll know what I mean.
They is no Raj Singh, no Yonkers or the floating cities. There is a snippet with a doctor examining a young man like in the book but I can’t really recall many other references to the book. I’m sure if I listened to the book again and watched the film a couple of more times then I’d notice a few more references but I’ll have to wait for DVD.

Enough moaning about the lack of reference to the book. It is a film I enjoyed, it kept my attention on the screen. The story is okay, although I won’t sure about the way it was wrapped up. The visuals are good and the characters are okay, if cliched. Brad Pitt is Brad Pitt, he does what he does best. I’m not his biggest fan but he is a decent actor and does a steady job here.
The movie starts off quickly before the pace eases off a little and then levels out okay. Brad Pitt’s character has to find the source of the outbreak but instead finds something else.

Do I recommend seeing World War Z? Yes. Despite the lack of reference to The book by Max Brooks and a weak ending its an entertaining movie, great for if you want to chill out and not think too much about it.

State Of Play

I just wanted to share an update with how the writing is going at the moment. I’ll admit I’ve barely done much actual writing in the last few weeks but with Tracie(my partner) being in hospital for the best part of three weeks, having a couple of minor health irritations myself (I say irritations because they are very minor but incredibly irritating!) All that has knocked me off my pace a little.

Project Apollo will not have much done on it till early July as that is when me and Owen are sitting down to go through and plot out the ending of the story.

The Residents is still in the planning stages. When me and Chrystalyn (http://thefutureofhope.wordpress.com/) start writing this I think it’s going to be the most prepared that I personally have ever been when it comes to writing something. At the moment I am mainly focusing on two of the main characters backstory’s.

I was going to work on my zombie story for NaNoWriMo but I’ve had an idea about it today which may require a little more thinking time. I’ve always had in mind to write a second story in this series but I had a flash of an idea on what a third story might involve which makes it a trilogy. So I now need to think out how it is going to play out over three books. I know the basics of each story but I need to build them more thoroughly and I’m not sure I will have that done by November.

I think I have enough feedback from one of my short stories which I am going to read through once more myself, and maybe change the title of before I start sending it off for submission.

With Avoiding The Game I have decided to give it one last bash at making it work, but I will have to make a fair few changes to the story so I have all but decided to do a full re-write as it will be easier then trying to fit in what I have in mind.

At the moment I am reading Redshirts by John Scalzi. I am really enjoying it and I’m finding Scalzi’s  style to my liking and the humour in this novel is awesome 🙂 With everything that has happened recently I haven’t been reading much so hopefully this week I’ll get back into the swing of it.

And finally I’d just like to share a couple of links to interesting podcasts that I’ve heard lately. First we have two from The Dead Robots Society; http://deadrobotssociety.com/2013/06/11/episode-276-mid-year-check-in/; http://deadrobotssociety.com/2013/06/18/episode-277-robots-on-inspiration-point/

Next is an episode from the Escape Pod Science Fiction podcast. This is quite a snappy little story that I fell in love with and adored how it ended;  http://escapepod.org/2013/06/06/ep399-my-heart-is-a-quadratic-equation/

And Finally here’s one from the StarShipSofa podcast. The story in this episode is written by Tobias S. Buckell and Karl Schroeder. I am familiar with both writers and I found this story was a great collaboration between two people whose work I enjoy;  http://www.starshipsofa.com/2013/05/21/starshipsofa-no-290-tobias-buckell-and-karl-schroeder/

 

I apologise for loading this post up with links but I believe in spreading the word about all things good and these are all very good. So I hope you check them out and get as much pleasure out of them as I have 🙂

Why I’m Ignoring Most Memes Now

We’ve all seen Memes, pictures with little catchphrases on. At first I found them quite amusing in the main and once in a while a really good one would catch my attention. Now though, they’re kind of predictable, as soon as I see them I know what they are. Many lack imagination and its rare that I see one now that impresses me.

What has really irritated me about them is the Game Of Thrones and The Walking Dead ones. I have not seen the most recent series of these two epically good series as I only recently got around to watching them (on DVD) so just from having a look through my Facebook feed I know who dies in these two awesome TV series [insert curse words of choice or rage filled roars]

That said some memes don’t contain spoilers and are very funny, but like everything that started off as something small and amusing it is now mutated into something that is becoming annoying with only a few that are still worthy of attention.