Author has written 11 stories for Yu-Gi-Oh GX, Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D's, Yu-Gi-Oh, Order of the Stick, and Discworld.
Hello, and welcome to my profile.
Have you ever tasted a delicious food that had a flavor just hidden enough that you had to taste it again? Have you ever hummed along with your favorite song and noticed some background instrument, rhythmic repetition, or meaning to the lyrics you'd never noticed before?
Those are the feelings I love when I'm exploring my fandoms. I admire authors that can build settings, characters, and plots with personal touches on multiple levels, each telling another thread of a story. Really good authors do so with a sense of balance so the story doesn't get overloaded, and the best authors remember those details and use them to grow flesh on the story's bones. This includes anything from a character replacing one habit with another to a forgotten complication coming back up at the worst possible time.
Granted, I don't always read dramas and satires. I love me a good action flick, even in the ham-fisted style. A few romance works hold very special places to me, and there's no arguing with laugh-out-loud comedy. Really, by the nature of idiosyncracies and surprises, I have to make a few exceptions to my standards now and again.
As for writing, I write what I like to read. My success is a work in progress, which makes more sense the more I think about it. Some of that progress won't be on this site, of course. For the parts that are, I hope to make the most of it.
I'm glad you stopped by. Skim through my favorites for some folks who know how to paint a unique yet understandable eye-view. If there's anything else here that could use some clearing up, you can close your eyes, face due east, take seven deep breaths, and beam your thought into my mind with the ferocity of a searchlight on a storm-ravaged fishing trawler. Or you can send me a note. Your call.
Finally, if you're wondering what my pen name is supposed to mean, it involves a tree, a tomato, a cucumber, and a car crash in January. Also, my profile image involves Ghostwriter, and credit for that friendly ghost goes to PBS.
"Right Through You" [working title] -- Static Shock
Alone. Cold. After living on the streets for so long, Maureen Connor finds certain thoughts looping through her head more and more often. This December, her emotions take a new shape.
"Five Monster Spirits' Graduation Speeches" [working title] -- Yu-Gi-Oh! GX
Being a Duel Monsters spirit means sharing your partner's experiences both in duels and out of them. When five students prepare to leave Duel Academy, their partners are there to help them reflect on their lives.
"Adult Supervision" -- Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D's
[It's due for an update. Next chapter: one of Ruka's first street duels ends with a distressing effect on her.]
"Secret Rare" -- Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D's
The destiny of the Signer dragons would bring them to their bearers. Godwin knew this, and other people would discover this. However, the world of humanity is one of many colliding paths and stories, and destiny can manifest in very difficult ways, even for something as simple as a set of Synchro monster cards.
"Cross My Heart" [working title] -- Yu-Gi-Oh 5D's
The concept of mortality is different for a dragon than for most other monsters. Life Stream Dragon did not think about it often, but when his world suffers a cataclysmic battle of darkness and divinity, the fallout will eliminate far more than his perspective.
"Foolamancy [illusion magic] is Eyemancy. By habit and trade, a Foolamancer must look. At all times, the Foolamancer must observe the nouns around him in finest detail and broadest stroke, in a way that other minds do not. Other minds take shortcuts. Other minds construct, telling themselves stories about what they see, rather than seeing. Foolamancy is therefore only a narrative. To tell a mind it sees something, the Foolamancer must both see the world as it is, and also as it is seen.
Staring into the void of that discrepancy is what drives one mad, really."
–Jack Snipe, "Erfworld - Book 2: Love is a Battlefield," Image 26 / Text Update 10, Rob Balder
"No great artist ever sees things as they really are. If he did, he would cease to be an artist."
–Vivian, "The Decay of Lying: An Observation by Oscar Wilde"
"It wasn't a decision he was making, he knew that. It happened far below the levels of the brain where decisions were made. It was something built in. There was no universe, anywhere, where a Sam Vimes would give in on this, because if he did then he wouldn't be Sam Vimes anymore."
–Terry Pratchett, Night Watch
"[This is] Only one of those whimsical little incidents which will happen when you have four million human beings all jostling each other within the space of a few square miles. Amid the action and reaction of so dense a swarm of humanity, every possible combination of events may be expected to take place, and many a little problem will be presented which may be striking and bizarre without being criminal."
–Sherlock Holmes, "The Adventure of the Blue Carbuncle," Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
"Oh, I know what you think about me -- you've got me neatly classified in that orderly mind of yours, haven't you? I'm soft and self-indulgent, I haven't any moral courage -- or any morals, for that matter -- and I don't give a damn for anyone but myself. Well, I'm not denying it. Maybe it's ninety per cent true. But the odd ten per cent is mighty important, Grant!"
–McNeil, from Arthur C. Clarke's short story "Breaking Strain"
"Anyone who says that they’re great at communicating but ‘people are bad at listening’ is confused about how communication works."
–Randall Munroe, alt-text of "xkcd" comic #1028
"We are telling a story set in a whole alien universe here. We have mythologies and character histories and world mechanics backing this up, but it's the story that matters. I care ten times more about Sizemore's emotional state in the heat of battle than I do about whether or not a sourmander could spit acid across a hex boundary. (But I still know the answer.)"
–Rob Balder, writer of "Erfworld"
"I never trust anyone who’s more excited about success than about doing the thing they want to be successful at."
–Randall Munroe, alt-text of "xkcd" comic #874
"You have to get back on the horse. Somehow, and I don’t know how this kind of thing starts, we have started to lionize horseback-not-getting-on: these casual, a priori assertions of inevitable failure, which is nothing more than a gauze draped over your own pulsing terror. Every creative act is open war against The Way It Is. What you are saying when you make something is that the universe is not sufficient, and what it really needs is more you. And it does, actually; it does. Go look outside. You can’t tell me that we are done making the world."
–Jerry "Tycho" Holkins, author for "Penny Arcade", rant from 04/20/2012 "A Matter of Scale"
The following has nothing to do with fan fiction. I want to commemorate a TV show I watched as a child, and since Wikipedia doesn’t accept personal memories as research sources, I shall record them here.
DEV [narrating] – Jack Craft, age 19, 626 Elm Street. Computer project: Reality Check.
[Glitch flies across screen, cackling] [An energy bolt pulls Jack into the computer monitor.]
DEV – Disappeared: June 8th. [Images of Sam and Nick are uploaded] New residents: Samantha Bonner, Nicholas Bonner. [Video of Sam touching a bright globe on the monitor] Computer reactivated: September 17th.
[montage of Jack and other people exploring various programs and simulations]
JACK [to Sam and Nick, paraphrased] – Whoa, I’m glad you guys are here. I’m gonna need your help.
[transition to title card, “Reality Check.” Wipe to black.]
“Reality Check” was a weekly TV show. It featured Ryan Seacrest as Jack, a guy who got trapped inside his own computer program, which was called DEV. He met Sam Bonner (who became the new keeper of DEV) and Nick (her little brother), plus their friends, Bud and Yasmine. The kids were about 12 years old, give or take a few years. Elsewhere in the computer were Will and Isis, who I’m fairly sure were AI programs, not trapped people. Last but not least was Glitch, an unfortunately-intelligent ball of blue-green electronic energy that delighted in causing problems for Jack and the others.
This was not a straightforward “educational” show. Nobody turned aside to talk to the audience, outlined a lesson plan, or announced that this episode was brought to you by the letter B and the number 5. It involved the kids taking closer looks (or even any look at all) at the way the world worked around them. Sometimes, they took guesses, and when something unexpected happened (which was pretty often), they could ask one of the DEV inhabitants and figure it out. The mainframe also was able to generate simulations of entire worlds, allowing the inhabitants or the kids to portray just about anything, although navigation sometimes got to be a problem.
Apparently, it only ran for something like 15 episodes. I can't say counted them when I was that young, but I do remember some of them:
-Sam and Nick wind up in a dismal labyrinth designed by Glitch, who welcomes them to his own world, mocking them as he does so by mimicking their appearances. As the kids navigate the maze, they find Jack, who can’t express himself properly because Glitch keeps forcing him to say extra words. They also find Will, who can’t hear or understand anything because he’s overloaded with sound frequencies. By deleting the interference, the kids clear things up.
-Nick interrupts Sam in the middle of her lucky rituals, such as rubbing a rabbit’s foot and not stepping on cracks in the computer room’s floorboards. He mocks her by stepping on a crack and then yelling downstairs to see if their mom has broken her back. They turn to the DEV folks for a few second opinions. Isis defends the Luck side of the argument by saying how superstitions form and develop. Will defends the Logic side by pointing out how superstitions do (or rather, don’t) affect real life. Jack moderates each topic (which also include mirrors) in the persona of a quiz game show host, although he has to retract “Good luck” from his intro pitch.
-The kids decide to order pizza. Bud insists on getting it with "the works." The delivery guy starts up his vehicle, and I think the kids have to help him navigate. DEV displays the guy’s point of view, and he winds up riding through water at some point during the crazy route. By the time the pizza arrives, it's in such bad shape that Bud is the only person willing to eat any of it.
-Jack goes on a motorcycle journey, and Glitch diverts him to a cloud-covered wasteland with no apparent escape. He finds an electronic tablet and stylus, but it only lets him draw pictures. Meanwhile, Sam and Nick are faced with a static-covered screen with no sign of Jack, but by looking at the incoming series of pictures, they figure out what happened to him and rescue him.
-The four kids get to wondering about what a child would look like with combinations of their characteristics. (No, I don’t remember if there was any stress related to cooties or whatnot.) Jack goes into a mad-scientist-with-a-microscope persona to talk about traits passing down from parents to children. Sam gets confused about how she’s blond when her parents both have brown hair, so Jack (and Will) check her grandparents and find the blond trait there.
-Will dons a hard hat and talks about buildings and structures. Apparently, tall buildings are prone to falling over, especially if they’re too rigid. Steel is superior because it flexes and then returns to its original shape.
-Sam is feeling glum about her lot in life, and she consults DEV for inspiration. A search for female Presidents comes up empty, but a search for female leaders gets quite a few results, including Isis’ name. The AI Isis then listens to Sam and provides a room full of objects and a series of riddles. Each riddle leads to an object, which creates a hazardous simulation for Sam to face. Among these, "sled" leads to an Arctic expedition, and "space" leads to a dangerous shuttle ride. The last one is "mirror," which shows the faces and names of the women that braved each of these frontiers. The photos conclude with the smiling image of Sam herself.
-Urgent and furtive, Jack has a secret for Sam and Nick. He knows a way to get out the mainframe, but he’s had to hide it from Glitch and hasn’t had an opportunity to use it before now. He needs them to fly a virtual ship from one place to another (I think it was from the portal to an energy source) and back again before his window of opportunity closes. Saving Jack is a big deal to them, so they get started right away, but they hit a few hazards on the trip out, and it uses up more than half of their time. However, Isis is at their first goal, and when they repair her pixelated transmission and prep to leave, Isis informs them of a wind tunnel that will boost their travel speed to just make it. They find the tunnel, manage a very tight flight, and similarly repair contact with Will, who sets up the rest of the function. The monitor glows and sparks with energy, and Jack reaches out. They struggle to pull at his outstretched arm, and his head is clear of the screen when they all hear Glitch’s defiant voice. Jack is pulled back into the computer, and the portal closes. It’s over, but Jack appreciates what they did for him anyway, and they aren’t giving up.
Overall, I liked this show, though it seems history has forgotten it. If you happen to have seen this, or even anything else cut from this kind of cloth, give me a shout.
-Write a Yu-Gi-Oh! story that does not display any dueling.
-Write a story for my other main fandoms (Ocarina of Time, Sly Cooper, Avatar: the Last Airbender, Static Shock, Homestar Runner, Batman Beyond)
-Develop a method of prewrites and first drafts more organized than "a dozen or two half-used sheets of paper and envelopes"
-Learn the proper use of ambition and goals. Learn to write a character -- or preferably, crowds of characters -- with unique fires in their hearts. Learn to see, to feel the inexorable progress blazed by their determination, to know the pressure as they inevitably encounter obstacles but nevertheless deal with them (or don't) as only they know how. And then, when the dust settles and I dare to pause and take a breath, to look back and realize just how much those characters have changed, and to know that it could not have happened instantaneously but in fact happened as an outgrowth from constantly believing and returning to the field, regardless of its known or unknown perils.
-Clean out the dozens of fanfics in my internet browser's bookmark folder. Preferably by reviewing or favoriting them properly.
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