Tag: CherryPop Updates

CherryPop McGee Returns

She’s back. After quite the hiatus, I’m back at it with the CherryPop McGee story that I hope one day becomes a book. In fact, I know it will because I’m going to self-publish it, hehe 🙂 So whether it’s crap or really good, I will at least be able to say I wrote a book 🙂

I hope it’s good though. I’ve also revived the website, and I’ve released three chapters and the prologue so far. Interspersed with the chapter releases are blog posts from the two main characters themselves: CherryPop and Liam (the Zombie). Liam and CherryPop are also on Twitter, though things aren’t looking so good for our girl as she’s become the victim of a Stupid Zombie bite that was infected with something and now she’s out cold. You’ll have to follow them on Twitter to find out what happens next.

I’m slowly building up a little ‘verse for my story that I hope can get noticed and (hopefully) is enjoyed by folks who dig on Zombie/Magic/sci-fi-y type stories. Ican’t narrow down a genre to pin this to yet.

I also have plans to do a podcast, maybe 30 minutes or so on Zombies that would end with the release of another chapter of the story. I figured I could do Zombie trivia, have someone review a Zombie movie and umm, other Zombie stuff. It’s a Zombcast. Or will be if I can recruit helpers. If anyone reads this, get a hold of me and let me know if you’d like to help me out 🙂

So that’s me done pimping what I’m up to. This is my main project right now in my free time and I am having an absolute blast working on this.

Lazy Sunday

Do ant bait traps work? I’ve discovered that ants have been getting into my kitchen via a very small tear in the weather-stripping on the back door. I hate ants. Sure, they’re harmless. But they’re all buggy and twitchy and make me feel itchy and seeing one crawl across the kitchen counter makes me jump about ten feet. I bought some ant bait thingies, but I’m skeptical on whether they’ll actually work. We’ll see I guess. I fixed the weather-stripping hole so maybe they won’t be able to get in now and the traps will kill the ones who did make it. We rarely use the backdoor, so I never even realized the hole was there.

The weather’s been nice – a break from the storms – and I went for a walk yesterday with the cam. Didn’t take any stunning pics or anything, but just knowing that I *could* take a stunning pic while on a walk makes me happy 🙂 Shan’s had the car this weekend while she worked, so I’ve been stuck at home. I did not make any progress on CherryPop, but I’m okay with that for now. I’m not feeling the guilt just now. Some ideas are percolating in the noggin and I’m pretty sure at some point I’ll just have an uncontrollable, overwhelming urge to spew out volumes on the story. I’m looking forward to that.

I do have a new project for the summer that I’m very excited about. I hope it’s okay to mention it – not sure if it’s a big secret or anything. The Buffy Between the Lines folks, as I’ve mentioned before, have grand plans to produce Angel Between the Lines as well as Firefly Between the Lines. Apparently, planning has been underway on Angel for a fair bit now, but unfortunately (but fortunately for me) one of the writers had to drop out. So I jumped at the chance to write for ABtL when the email went out asking if anyone was interested. I will get to co-write the first episode 🙂

First drafts are due on September 1st, so I actually have a deadline to work towards. The Fabz Tabz (“The Joss” of this whole Between the Lines phenomenon) gave my writing partner and me a great outline to work with and I think this will be a very good learning experience. Seeing the outline and spending the past few days making notes and working within the confines of the storyline someone else made up is going to be a lot of fun. My writing partner had great notes herself and I think she’s going to be a lot of fun to work with. I just can’t express enough how exciting this is to me 🙂

And it just may stimulate the whole CherryPop storyline too, or at least give me new ways to work on it.

I think I had more to write about but I’m trying to fight on oncoming migraine so I’m not very focusy. Might go for another walk and see if the fresh air helps.

Experiments and bad days

I had a bad day yesterday. It was one of those days where absolutely nothing goes right, computer “issues”, dropping things left and right, noisy neighbours at 3am, pounding headache, forgetting routine things and oh yeah, getting hit by a car.

Oh don’t worry. I’m being slightly dramatic on that last one. I was not hurt.

It began with the noisy neighbours. I suppose I should be thankful they weren’t having sex. But still, 3am’s a bit early (or late depending on your POV) to hold a normal, full-voice conversation on the other side of a wall you know to be thin from having to listen to 2 girls laughing loudly (but during normal hours) at the cat or funny Fark headlines.

So being woken up against my will is never a good thing for me. I get… grumpy. So after a groggy start to the day, I decide to stop by HyVee again after dropping the kidlet off to check if they have any of the Hint O’Mint tea I really love. I’ve stopped there in the hopes that they have it about 5 times in the past week and no joy. As I’m walking in from my car, a minivan parked illegally decides to back up just as I’m passing it. He hits me and knocks me off my balance a little. I smack his gas tank and give him a very loud, “OI!” He just looks at me like a slack-jawed idiot. No offer of apology or checking to see if I’m ok. Nope. Just a blank stare. Fucker.

And after that, HyVee STILL DID NOT HAVE MY TEA. Fuckers.

So I get to work, realize I’ve left my red Scheels sports bottle there the night before and so I have no lovely yummy Brita water to drink as is my habit. I grimace at the thought of going thirsty. I hate not having *something* to drink. I make plans to take the bottle home at lunch and fill it up. At lunch, I fill it and walk to the car, feeling better and carrying my water. Then I drop it. Now, it’s a tough sucker. The bottle bounces, and if I had better reflexes I probably could have caught it and had a good chuckle at how weird that was. But I do not have good reflexes apparently and all I could do was watch it land, the lid fly off and all my lovely Brita water spill everywhere.

I’m now late for work and besides, if I went back to refill it, the water would be tepid at best. I sigh, pick up the nearly empty bottle and head back to work where a slowbuilding headache begins powering up.

My computer decides to pick this day to do wonky things and I spend most of the afternoon wrestling with it, cursing at it, sighing frustratedly, and finding myself weighing the probability of getting fired over how satisfying it would be to pick it up, walk outside and heave it at the nearest passing semitruck. 5pm cannot come fast enough.

It finally does, and the minute I get home, I sit down, and stay there nearly catatonic until bedtime. Everything bothered me. I growled at the kid over stupid things and promptly apologised and then felt bad for being such a nitpicky bitch and finally I just crawled into bed.

Thankfully today was fine. Nice even. I didn’t drop a thing, no one ran me over, the computer behaved and I spilled no water. I even got to duck out of work 15 minutes early thanks to a surprise announcement from the kid that she had to work at 5pm and she had the car.

The cool thing I did this evening was venture out to Hastings (a bookstore along the lines of a Borders or Barnes & Noble) with the laptop with the purpose of getting started writing my book.

Other than being completely ignored by the staff there when I really would have liked to order a cup of tea (you apparently have to hunt down a clerk if you want to order stuff. I say screw that) and one screaming kid, I was quite productive in the hour and a half I was there. I was able to outline almost the entire story so that I have a base to work from. I needed that to help me focus. Otherwise I look at the blank Word doc and feel overwhelmed at not knowing where to begin.

I think I’ll try someplace else though next time because Hastings is full of crappy clerks (I did decide to name an annoying character in the story after the crappy store though 🙂 ) I’m just afraid if I go to Starbucks I will not be able to resist the siren call of the beautiful Mocha. God I miss my Mochas. Being good sucks sometimes.

Wow this is getting long. Sorry. Anyway, I made good progress on the book and I can’t wait to get in there and really flesh it out. I was looking at self-publishing options this morning (I’m not getting ahead of myself, I was just talking to a columnist at the paper who wrote a book a couple of years ago and he was telling me how he did it.) It looks like I’m going to use Lulu.com to publish it. They don’t require any dosh up front which is good because I don’t have any 🙂 I’d love to try and get the book published the old-fashioned way via a proper publisher but I don’t see that happening.

Except you know, sometimes bloggers get noticed by publishers. It worked for Dooce and that chick who blogged about being a cabbie in NYC. Those guys are part of the reason I began blogging as CherryPop. That and I want to post as her as much as possible so I can inhabit her headspace and do a good job writing this book. It’s going to be in first person so yeah, better get some practice. And if cherrypopmcgee.com happens to get some traffic along the way, then cool! Besides, it’s kind of fun 🙂 I also hooked her up with a MySpace page for the hell of it too. Why not!

Ok I’ve rambled far too much. I’ve got a Dresden book to finish up and then I think I’m off to bedfordshire. Gnighty!

A Kooky Idea

Sorry dear readers, I’m still on my CherryPop kick. I had a rather odd idea for this whole thing the night before last. Just as I was turning off my bedside lamp to go to sleep, the idea that maybe I should buy a domain for the CherryPop character popped in my head. I discussed the merits of it with myself and decided I’d do it in the morning. I thought I would use the domain to maybe flesh out the character, keep a journal of my progress as I write this thing – all that good stuff.

But later that day, I thought, wouldn’t it be fun to put a blog on the new site and post as the character? A sort of online extension of CherryPop (ohmygod Steph quit saying CherryPop) that potential readers of the book could come to and learn more about the character. It could become a viral marketing thing I could use when it’s done. It could be a way for me to inhabit the character, much like an actor does, so I can make her and her weird world believable.

And it has the added bonus of being something that will motivate me if I find my inertia on this waning. BUT I don’t see that happening this time. I’m too excited about this 🙂

Sooooo without further blather, here’s CherryPop’s blog. Just a post or two right now, remember I just started it yesterday 🙂 But I’m planning to write as her quite frequently as well as continue to add to the ficlet series.

This is gonna be fun 🙂

For the first time ever

I think I have a viable idea for a book-length story. Ok, I love writing but I’ve never been very good at thinking up story ideas. At least, none that would go longer than short-story length. I just couldn’t find a way to sustain a long, novel-length story. I never felt like my ideas were good enough or interesting enough.

I’ve tried everything I can think of too to jump start my stupid brain. Writing exercises, I’ve started many many blogs aimed at giving me a place to bounce ideas around, NaNoWriMo… nothing was working for me. Then I met Ficlets. The place has been amazing and I can’t say enough good things about it. I know I talk about them quite a bit here, and you can see my latest ficlets in the right rail over there ———>
but I think there are several things about the site that make it so perfect for me.

The very short format forces you to try and tell a whole story in a few paragraphs, which means you have to edit and re-edit and piece your idea together like a puzzle to make it work and still be cohesive and good. Sure, you can sequel your story if you need more room, or if you’re creating a series. You can even prequel your story (or someone else’s!). So you get good practice. The site offers many ways to get inspiration for a story – you can flip through thousands of Flickr images, or use a story starter, or sequel someone else’s ficlet, or read the site owner’s blog when he throws out quotes and ideas for ficlets. The community has also started incorporating writing challenges you can enter.

My friend used his space to create a nifty challenge called 18-1 where you have to tell a story but the first sentence must be 18 words long, the next 17 words, then 16 and so on until the last sentence is just a word. I’ve entered many challenges, but that one kicked my ass.

But probably the best part of ficlets is the feedback. I’ll admit it straight up. I am a feedback whore. I’ll write a ficlet and publish it, then refresh the page until I see someone’s commented on it. And people aren’t afraid to be honest either. If you suck, they’ll tell you. They don’t know you. It’s not like asking your family or best friend to read your stuff an they’ll probably try to be nice. I find I need that constructive feedback. I need to know what works and what doesn’t. It’s encouraging when they like your stuff because it’s mildly thrilling and prompts you to keep it up.

So that’s a helluva lot of blather on ficlets, I know. So what’s the point? What’s the big idea for a story that’s got me so excited? Well it’s thanks to Ficlets that I had this little epiphany. The other day I was in the mood to write a ficlet but I didn’t have any ideas. So I searched for ‘zombies’ in the Flickr images (I’m in a supernatural frame of mind atm what with the vampire porn and Dresden Files floating around my head.) I found a picture of a handpainted sign that said ‘Legalize Zombie Marriage’ which I found amusing.

And with that picture, a little ficlet series happened. When I was trying to think up a name for the girl, for some reason calling her CherryPop seemed like a good idea. What a weird name, I know. But I like it. A lot. So my ficlet series is sort of about CherryPop’s weird life where the supernatural stuff is slowly being accepted by society as ‘real’ – ie vampires and zombies and ghosties etc. are really real and CherryPop grew up amongst the “monsters” and now she spends her time helping the the normals to get used to the idea and fight for their rights etc.

Anyway, I’m obviously working on the details in my head, but the ficlet series is practically writing itself, it’s so much fun, and I’m making each one up as I go which is probably a bad idea when you’re creating a whole world etc. but I can’t stop thinking about this idea. I feel so excited about it and I’ve never had this feeling about anything else I’ve ever written. So wish me luck and check in with me now and then to see how it’s going (and to see if I’m still doing it.) I’m working up a storyline for it tonight and I might write another ficlet for it as well. I hope to get this written and then I’m going to try the self-publishing route at lulu.com because I don’t have the first clue about how to approach a real publisher. Anyway, I’d better get to it 🙂