05/22/09 | Genius Mode, My Writings | 3 Comments
I have been writing this novel in one form or another since I was 15. It doesn’t have any of the original plotline left - in fact, I think the only thing that’s the same is my protagonist’s name, Simon - and there have been months and even years in between periods of working on it.
I finished it at 12:44AM this morning. Well, I REALLY finished it two days ago, but I didn’t realize it until yesterday. I was planning on adding more to the chapter I was rewriting, but I noticed it had a perfect ending where I’d left off, so that’s where I left it! You probably would’ve laughed at me, because I almost started hyperventilating when the realization struck. It’s DONE!
It’s now 133,700 words, which is about 13,000 words less than my last count, and that’s actually a good thing! It was a little long and I didn’t really want to admit it, but where it’s at now I can’t shave any more off. There was a lot in this last round I deemed unnecessary, including most of a subplot for one of the minor characters, and it all got the ax! You have to be ruthless with your baby, sometimes.
Now, it’s up to Dawn, Francine and Nikki to tell me how it reads! I’m getting copies printed this weekend at Staples, and they’ll get shipped out shortly after.
Okay, enough squealing on my part! Just wanted to let everyone know why I dropped off the face of the earth for the past couple of weeks… I WAS FINISHING MY BOOK.
I like the sound of that.
Kyle W. Kerr
What do the two of these have in common? Nothing, apart from the fact that I’m going to discuss both of them in this blog post.
I never read the comics when I was younger, but I did watch the cartoon, so there was definitely a certain level of anticipation on my part when the first of the X-Men franchise was originally slated for release. Though I’ve deemed the X-Men films as the movies where good actors go to get a break from acting, they’ve served their entertainment purposes and I’ve liked all three of them.
X-Men Origins: Wolverine is supposed to be about the—er—origins of, well, Wolverine, if the title wasn’t obvious enough. It starts off when he’s a kid and he finds out he’s half-brothers with Victor Creed (aka Sabretooth), goes through a choppy montage of clips with the two of them fighting in every war imaginable in recent history, to the point where they’re both recruited to become part of William Stryker’s personal SWAT team of mutants. That’s all in the first five minutes. To say that this film is roughly edited and moves at too quick of a pace is an understatement. I had a connection with Wolverine because I’ve already been through three other movies with him, but it didn’t leave me enough time to bond with the other characters.
One of my favorites has always been Gambit, but the eight minutes of screen time he had wasn’t nearly enough for me (though they were probably the BEST eight minutes of the movie!). The whole storyline was a bit contrived and I left feeling disappointed. It was entertaining, don’t get me wrong, with some decent action and a look at a bunch of new mutants we hadn’t been privy to in the earlier films in the franchise (and some of them, like Gambit and Deadpool, already have Origins spin-offs of their own in the works), which was cool. But the acting in this installment was particularly bad, even on Hugh Jackman’s part, which pains me to say.
And there’s also the fact that they CHANGED Wolverine’s origins for this movie! Like I said previously, I didn’t read the comics, but even I know that Logan didn’t have his claws UNTIL the metal was added to his bones… they were a sort of perk of the operation. In the movie, young Jimmy (I don’t know WHY he’s called Jimmy in the beginning and throughout the film by Sabretooth and is now Logan, but whatever) gets mad and the claws come out of his hands as bone, and he goes through all the wars and most of his life with the bone claws (which I actually found kind of disgusting for some reason) that turn into metal during the operation. And since when does Sabretooth have long life like Wolverine? He also seemed to have healing powers of some sort, because he never seemed to be hurt, no matter how he was shot, stabbed, cut or impaled. Anyone know anything about X-Men that can let me know about this?
Basically, it’s a pretty mindless movie with some decent action and cool special effects. Hopefully the Wolverine 2 movie that is already being planned will be a little better in the story and acting departments, because this one was definitely lacking in both. Go to see it in theatres if you like (mostly because the SFX will look better), but it’s not really necessary.
Score: Not great, but didn’t want to throw myself on Wolverine’s claws… 6/10.
Neil’s name has popped up over the past few years, but I never picked up one of his books. Most recently (if you call two years ago recently), I saw the movie Stardust, which is based off of one of his novels, and I really liked it! Now, I still haven’t read any of his books, but I subscribe to his Journal on his official website and I also just followed him on Twitter.
There are some authors that I love to read but who can be fairly boring people. There are others that I don’t particularly like their books but I LOVE to read them talk (meaning, anything BUT their fiction, ie. blog posts, interviews, etc…). Stephen King is one of the latter. I HAVE eighteen of his books and I’ve read exactly four of them. They’re okay, but don’t have me itching to pick up the next one (then why do I have eighteen of them? I have mentioned my compulsive book buying before, haven’t I?), but his On Writing book is incredible, I read every Entertainment Weekly column he writes, and every time I see an interview or anything with him I have to read it. He’s just an incredibly interesting and intelligent person whose brain I love to get a glimpse into.
This is my problem with Neil. Not a problem, per-se, but definitely a predicament. I love reading him talk so much that I’m afraid to pick up one of his books! Take his latest Journal entry for instance (read it here… trust me, you’ll enjoy it!). A very well thought out response to a question that plagues most published authors, but also an answer to an email from a fan! As a heavy reader myself, I like to see instances where authors take the time to communicate with their fans, and Neil does that on a daily basis through email, his Journal, and on Twitter. It’s very frustrating when some of your favorite authors don’t even have a WEBSITE, let alone a blog or Twitter account or Facebook page. A great amount of interaction isn’t necessary (they do have to have time to actually write the books we so love!), but a little would be nice, and a bit more is always appreciated.
Are we too connected? Only time will tell, but I enjoy the communication and is something I plan to do myself when I finally get published. I mean, how else would I have known that Christopher Rice finished his fifth book last week if I weren’t friends with him on Facebook? I know he has no clue who I am, but it’s nice to have that little connection.
But back to Neil. I have been enjoying his Journal entries for months now and think it’s finally time to venture into his world of fiction. Are there any fans out there who could recommend a first read?
And if you haven’t checked out his Journal, definitely take some time to do so!
P.S. Follow me on Twitter if you haven’t already!
Kyle W. Kerr