Fall actual play report – ep 18 Losing Ground pt 1

Montage: Alex goes out fighting vampires every night, angrily slaying vampires to work out her guilt and anger and angst. Megan has been working on her science project, one armed because the other arm is in a sling. Darius has been studying and working out, making himself more kick-ass.Calvin is hanging out with his sister, Gina and Mason. The montage ends with Alex hunting, Darius arrives in his car, hops out and offers to help. Alex holds a vampire for him to pummel.

Alex gets home at about 2am, muddied and worn out. Her parents are sitting up, waiting for her.
Alex’s mum: Where have you been?
Alex asks if she can have a moment to change, when she comes back down her parents are just as concerned.
Alex’s mum: It’s a school night.
Alex: It’s a science project. It’s something I’m working on, you know, the nocturnal habits of certain kinds of bugs in the park.
Alex’s Mum: we’re not happy for you to be going out at night, it’s not safe. We see more and more stories in the paper about this kind of thing. I mean, look at what happened to your friends, just a couple of weeks ago.
Alex goes stony-faced, excuses herself and goes to bed.

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Things I Love Thursday

As you can no doubt tell from my posts of this week, I had an awesome time at Kapcon. Seriously, I loved every game I played in, the LARP blew my mind, I caught up with all my peeps, made a couple of new friends and ate some delicious takeaways.

I love this article about how dogs are rich and happy. It makes me want to be a better person. By being more like a dog. Huh.

My new diary. I finally got a small, portable and yet roomy inside pink diary for 2010. This way I shall hopefully be more organised and less likely to flake. Unfortunately it only gives me a *teeny* amount of space for the weekends, but hey, it’s pink!

Thinking about future awesome roleplaying and costuming. I have signed up for a Camelot LARP (thanks to Donna for letting me take Guinevere) and a Sweeny Todd inspired 1900 LARP. I can make up the Medieval costume pretty easily using my purple dress from the Sanctuary and adding some bling and some cape action. The 1900 one is a bit more challenging, since I don’t have anything appropriate just lying around. Might have to check out some costume stores.

Honourable Mentions: writing going well for me, friends getting publishing opportunities, sunshine, clean clothes, our new (new new) cleaner, Fall last night (actual play soon), laughing, sleeping, M&Ms trumpets, wedding invitations to the weddings of people I love, short stories, new breast cancer research tshirts from Glassons and candy.

And you? What are you happy about today?


With Kapcon and Lee’s sickness last week I didn’t manage the normal load of writing/editing this last week. However having my manuscript all set up on the table is definitely conducive to work and I have got to page 75 on my one-pass edit. That’s a bit over halfway, so it’s going well.


A quick thought on character voices.

I also enjoyed learning what authors get control over.

Another awesome how not to write article about 6 top writing whines.

More on query letters, specifically annotating query letters to show what to do and what not to do.

Kapcon 19 – Day 2

AKA the funnest day ever.

I had a very good sleep after the LARP except that I woke up at 6.30 buzzing with the day before and excited about the day to come. In first session I played Amphigori’s game American Gothix. I was cast as the Artist, who truly believed that to be the best artistically you needed to suffer. Thus I complained about everything and constantly pointed out how terrible everything was. It was so much fun. The only problem was that we all kept laughing. Of course, this isn’t a problem at all. The game was full of awesome players…

Nikki was the newcomer ‘Wishless Star’, the token girl whose parents’ minivan we were road tripping in.
Bryn played Stevie, Star’s annoying little brother who we were forced to take with us so he could play Commodore 64 with his friend.
Glen was The DJ, Vinyl aka The Reefer
Andy M was playing the Delinquent, Zues, who was both scary and desperate to impress John
Ants played John Smith, the uber-Goth, basically the leader of the crew and oh so Goth, oh so smug. (I hated him, because I was clearly a lot more Goth than him.)
My character’s legal name had been Bryan but he was going by Byron.

Lots of awesome quotes from this game, I’ll try and give them context…

When we were deciding where to sit in the minivan John took the back seat, draping his arms along the back of the seat like he was holding court. I hung back while the delinquent chose the seat directly behind the driver, Vinyl pushed Stevie into the middle front seat so he could control the stereo. I was heading for the middle back seat, so that all of us in the back were seated alone. John Smith said: Byron, why don’t you sit next to me? Speak some poetry.
Byron: Nah man, I’m busy.
(I should have done it, really because my character sheet said to take every chance to read my poetry but I hated him so much I didn’t want to do what he said. It was awesome.) Continue reading

Reunion LARP

This year’s LARP was about a number of planets interconnected by gates which were shut down 500 years ago being reunited. My character, Marianne La Grange, was from the delegation from Arboria. We lived on the tops of gigantic trees and dressed like Victorians.

The delegation from Arboria

That’s us. You’ll notice I am standing rather close to a gentleman with a white scarf and a walking stick? That’s Alan Copeland the 26th, current King of New London. We were kind of involved. The thing is though, my character had a reason for going in the delegation that was more than just curiosity. My character’s family was immortal. My parents had cracked the gene coding or something and I’d been alive roughly 560 years. I was keen to catch up with my siblings and also…my husband. I’d married Steven back before the shutdown and we were separated when the gates closed. I had indulged in any number of flings since then, but I hadn’t let myself fall in love with anyone else until Alan…just a couple of years ago.

So, I was anxious. Of course, this was all a secret. None of the rest of the delegation knew my secret, although the physician had been suspicious. Alan’s father, Alan Copeland the 25th had been asking some awkward questions so I left New London and travelled. When I heard that the 25th was killed I went back to see the 26th. Right around that time the gates reopened.

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Kapcon 19 – day 1

I didn’t get my A into G to register for first round games before they started filling up. I decided the right way to start the con was with Games on Demand. Once in the room I managed to peer pressure Steve into running Bad Family. Also in the game were Trish playing River, 14 and whiny, Richard playing Randy the grandfather, Mike playing James the stoner twin of my character Jaime, Dylan was Alex, the eldest and Nasia, playing Beth, the mother of the rabble and Randy’s daughter.

My want for the episode was to win the school talent show. After we’d already established that James and River were rebellious and failing school I decided I had better be the good kid and ensure that Nasia didn’t enter a despair spiral. It didn’t really work. It’s tough being the mother of a Bad Family. If it wasn’t for my character’s addiction to amphetamines, I suspect I would have been rather boring compared to the others. This game was hella frenetic because of the high number of players but I managed to get the following Golden quote:

Beth, yanks River out of the bathroom so she won’t be late for school, interrupting her makeup application.
River: But if I go like this, everyone will look at me!
Beth: So clean all that stuff off your face.
River: but then no one will look at me!

In second round I ran my first ‘proper’ session of The Silver Kiss of the Magical Twilight of the Full Moon. It’s a game I wrote riffing off supernatural teen romance stories, specifically spoofing Twilight but incorporating a lot of the books I’ve read in the last year. It’s a game for four players, two supernatural beings, two humans. One of each falls in love and the other two are the best friends.
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Things I Love Thursday


Science explains how Mega Shark bites a plane out of the air in Mega Shark vs Giant Octopus. I wonder if he’ll go on to explain the whole colour mixing part of the movie soon? I also love how the comments are full of suggestions for how he could improve his calculations.


Lego Batman. We haven’t played it since Lee got sick on Sunday, but the hours of play on Saturday and earlier was awesome fun. Lee plays Batman and I’m Robin. It’s cute as anything and we’re doing well co operating and sometimes I even solve the puzzles first!

Monster watch! Texans saw a chupacabra! I ❤ monsters.

Having a naps, and then propogating naps. I was especially happy about this tweet


I like airports. Whether I’m going somewhere or picking someone up, it makes me happy to be there. The people arriving, the people waiting to leave, all the magazines, books, laptops, the fear of being told you can’t take something on the plane, memories of holidays, watching the planes….I just love it all.

Honourable kapconkapconkapconkapcon Mentions: OK, I admit it, I love Zoo World on facebook. The way you simultaneously have to work so hard and yet not at all makes me really happy. Curly fries, lunch with friends, laughing, my T shirt quilt, jelly beans, new books, M&Ms trumpets, cute stuff, PJs, sunshine and 3 berry cider.

And you, what are you thankful for this week?



I came to the realisation that although it’s awesome that I’m so into working on Rain and giving her all my attention, I shouldn’t actually stop doing everything else writerly.

So I dedicated Tuesday afternoon to my ‘other projects’. This meant sending agent queries out for WtWTCH? Which took a wee while, because I adjusted the query for each agent and had to make sure I was including exactly the right thing for each.

Then I spent a fair chunk of time reworking the first three chapters of Kiki. It’s not quite at the stage where I want to send it out again but it’s getting close. I think one more hardcore session of editing and I’ll be ready to submit it again. I am again astounded at how much better my writing has got since I first wrote Kiki.

The manuscript slog portion of editing Rain is going really well. I have it set up on the dining table, which makes it really easy to dip into first thing in the morning or during my lunch break. Asking myself the questions constantly as I do it has proved to be really helpful.

Today after lunch with Sophie and a nap I got to page 45 on my MS slog. I am quite distractible today. I sort of intended to get more done but it didn’t work out. I might give it another go this evening. It’s such a pretty day though, and I my sleep’s been pretty broken given Lee’s ongoing migraine so I’m snoozy too.


I really really loved Johnny B Truant’s article on how I’m not normal. It’s inspiring.

Lateral Action”s series of ways to work around creative block is quite good. I especially enjoyed Getting it wrong.

Author Intrusion and how to avoid it.

LARP excitement 2009

Following on from LARP excitement, I have some more thoughts.

Plus I’m excited about the LARP and I’m thinking about it a lot. This year’s Kapcon LARP is called Reunion, which is a sci-fi scenario based on a lot of different worlds coming together after being separated for 500 years.

My character this year is a citizen of Arboria, which is basically Steampunk World. I am wearing the beautiful and full on Victorian day dress that I inherited from Michaela with some steampunkery accessories. From Trade Me I got goggles, (handily blue to match my dress), a Harley Davidson saddlebag which I will use as a pouch, watch parts necklace and a sturdy leather belt to dangle things off.

I borrowed the most perfect Victorian style boots off Giffy, they are so super cute and also match perfectly the brown of my belt.

I borrowed a teeny wee hair iron from my mother in law in order to make myself adorable ringlets and I trialled my hair style and it looked awesome. I am so super psyched about my outfit. Expect some photos early next week!

In regards to the game itself, my character sheet is full of the delicious emo romance roleplaying that I love so much. It will be a super awesome night I think.

Must remember to stay hydrated (easy enough last year by having a water bottle on hand and refilling as needed), sit down as often as possible, eat a sandwich or similar when I get home and to not ingest any caffeine at any point. That should ensure a fun game and a drastic reduction of the LARP hangover I’ve been suffering the past few years. I don’t like missing the first round of the second day, especially since I’ve signed up to play Amphigori’s American Gothix game.

Antidotes to Monday

Wellington put on the sunshine this afternoon, so that lifted my mood somewhat. On the other hand it’s still Monday and most of us have settled back into work and that can make you feel a bit less than awesome. Here are some of the things I think might make you feel better.

I made this for dinner and it was really yum. I used frozen peas instead of fresh and bacon instead of prosciutto. I couldn’t find bow shaped pasta so I chose spirals, but it was still really good. Tasty and fresh, pleasant crunch from the pine nuts and…I didn’t actually make enough of it. I want more.

I also want to try out this so called easiest pizza dough. Should really make ourselves pizza, Hell is getting a little disappointing for when we want to order in.

Marvel at the Candy battle of Minas Tirith which Wil Wheaton linked to ages ago and it occurs to me you may not have seen.

Also, Gingerbread alamo. Amazing.

Pretty pretty pretty book jackets, which I really want to buy but I might just rip off the idea and make my own with some sturdy brown paper.

A quick pic of Neil Patrick Harris at the Golden Globes.

I’m getting super-psyched for Kapcon which is this weekend. Especially for the LARP which is shaping up to be rather awesome. I’m also looking forward to unleashing the emo when I run my game.

And finally, a video of a tiny 7 week old puppy trying to go down stairs. That is one appropriately named puppy.