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 Post subject: Re: Ask Raven
PostPosted: Sun Apr 22, 2018 3:42 am 
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Nice little story!

I don't know about you, but I'm starting to think this Raiker's not a very nice fellow...

Really? He seems so polite and charming...

Quote:
TPmanW wrote:
If you had to populate a sitcom with M:EM characters, what would be your main cast?

I have, on two separate occasions, tried to plan out an M:EM sitcom set in a high school with the various M:EM characters being either students or teachers. In the most recent iteration, the "main characters" were Daneera, Beryl, Aloise, Sharaka, and Aria. It never got past the planning stages.

Holy Joker, I'd like to know more about this so much :D

Are you planning to introduce new planeswalkers to the M:EM?

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 Post subject: Re: Ask Raven
PostPosted: Mon Apr 23, 2018 12:40 pm 
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Nice little story!

Thanks!

I don't know about you, but I'm starting to think this Raiker's not a very nice fellow...

Really? He seems so polite and charming...

Strange, I know. It's really just an inkling.

Also, doesn't "Inkling" sound like a perfect little elemental creature for Raiker to control? A little Ink Elemental that serves as his homunculus or something.

Inklings



Quote:
TPmanW wrote:
If you had to populate a sitcom with M:EM characters, what would be your main cast?

I have, on two separate occasions, tried to plan out an M:EM sitcom set in a high school with the various M:EM characters being either students or teachers. In the most recent iteration, the "main characters" were Daneera, Beryl, Aloise, Sharaka, and Aria. It never got past the planning stages.

Holy Joker, I'd like to know more about this so much :D

If people are actually interested in this silly thing, we can start a thread about it. I'll be happy to post the roles I've come up with and we can play around with it. Could be fun.

Are you planning to introduce new planeswalkers to the M:EM?

My roster of planeswalkers is more than large enough as it is...

So...yes. Yes I am. :D

I have a few in mind that I would like to get out there. There's one I've been working on for, I'm not even sure, two years? Maybe three, by now? It's just that every time I sit down to write the story, it just doesn't quite come together. Maybe this summer, I'll make a push for it.

I have another 'walker who predates all of my M:EM stuff that I've been meaning to add for a very long time, but I just haven't found the right time for. This character was meant to be a potential antagonist for Antine and Sundar, but with them sort of stuck in writer's block limbo, the new character hasn't had the opportunity to emerge yet. Plus, this particular character's "planned" story is super-ambitious, and I just don't have the time these days to invest in something like that, yet.

And there are a couple more that have crossed my mind from time to time that might one day get a full development.


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 Post subject: Re: Ask Raven
PostPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2018 1:00 am 
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Creative Inkling
Creature - Elemental Minion
Whenever a player casts a spell that does not share its name with a card in any graveyard or on the battlefield, put an Ink counter on Creative Inkling.
Whenever a player casts a spell that shares its name with a card in any graveyard or on the battlefield, ~'s base power and toughness become equal to the number of Ink counters on it until end of turn.
"Sometimes, you get just a little creative inkling..." - Raiker Venn
1/1

I think the design's more elegant this way. May as well have it do it's thing from the start. It can die immediately if the wrong card gets played, but I think that's kind of reflective of the creative process. Maybe the flavour text should reflect that it could grow or wither away? Actually, the whole thing should really be red. What color ink does Raiker use? Not sure why Blackblood was an Avatar before, so I didn't make this one.

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 Post subject: Re: Ask Raven
PostPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2018 1:52 am 
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Quote:
Quote:
I have, on two separate occasions, tried to plan out an M:EM sitcom set in a high school with the various M:EM characters being either students or teachers. In the most recent iteration, the "main characters" were Daneera, Beryl, Aloise, Sharaka, and Aria. It never got past the planning stages.

Holy Joker, I'd like to know more about this so much :D

If people are actually interested in this silly thing, we can start a thread about it. I'll be happy to post the roles I've come up with and we can play around with it. Could be fun.

Dunno about others, but the idea makes me smile :D

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 Post subject: Re: Ask Raven
PostPosted: Tue May 01, 2018 11:42 pm 
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Spoiler


My heart, it breaks. :(


Spoiler

My head, it e'splodes! :D


* * *


Actually, that leads me to a question about Nasperge, which is essentially the same question I had about Alessa earlier: What do you think Nasperge really wants? There has to be something that he's been chasing after all these years, or else he would just be living the quiet carnival life someplace. What's still driving him?


* * *


Tryst

Tryst has some really fascinating hooks that make her an interesting character, and I have some ideas for some stories involving her that I think might work pretty well. Not to give away too many trade secrets, but Orcish and I have batted around some of those ideas, and we have something that I think will work, but it needs some work to really take shape. Hopefully someday soon!

Hopefully, indeed!

Frankly, I don't feel like I've been able to do justice to Tryst, myself. She fascinates me -- fixates me, almost, for lack of a better way of putting it -- but she also kind of eludes me. She's so defined for me by her contradictions, but the same thing that makes her interesting also makes her hard to pin down. And so much about her is centered around her self-loathing, and it's hard for me to stare that straight in the eye for too long at a time, because it hurts to see. So I have to kind of take her in small doses, which makes it too easy to not write with her at all. I'm going to have to rectify that at some point.

God, do I hope she gets her happy ending someday... The little non-canon story about her sending her daughter off to the prom makes me so happy.

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 Post subject: Re: Ask Raven
PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2018 10:06 pm 
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OK, I haven't been pitching much to these but here's an odd one that kind of ties in to how I work: Do you ever listen to music when you write, and if so what? And, independent of that, do you ever find yourself associating songs with the characters you create, and if so what are some examples?

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 Post subject: Re: Ask Raven
PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2018 11:25 pm 
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My heart, it breaks. :(

It seems to me that Jackie might have one more lesson for Scar. I picture Scar sort of hemming and hawing about the whole thing when she gets to the Ranch, and then, after the story's out, Jackie may have a thing or two to say about shooting Straight...

My head, it e'splodes! :D

* * *

Actually, that leads me to a question about Nasperge, which is essentially the same question I had about Alessa earlier: What do you think Nasperge really wants? There has to be something that he's been chasing after all these years, or else he would just be living the quiet carnival life someplace. What's still driving him?

Well, one of the ways I said I could answer questions here is by writing a story, so...

Spoiler


OK, I haven't been pitching much to these but here's an odd one that kind of ties in to how I work: Do you ever listen to music when you write, and if so what? And, independent of that, do you ever find yourself associating songs with the characters you create, and if so what are some examples?

I do often listen to music while I write. I like writing with some kind of noise in the background. I usually have it on very low, so that I can barely hear it, because I am unapologetically one of those people who sings along to songs, so it can get distracting at times if it's too loud. My taste in music is somewhat eclectic, but mostly 60s, 70s, and 80s Rock and some 90s alternate stuff, I guess. Occasionally, I throw in some Irish folk music, but usually not as much while writing.

I tend to associate songs with characters only if the character had been created as a reference to that song. Antine will always be linked to the Beatles' "Rocky Racoon," of course. Sage is linked to the song "Seven Spanish Angels," by Ray Charles and Willy Nelson, because his intro story was based on that song. I associate Blink with a song I discovered by accident, a song called "Just Close Your Eyes," by Waterproof Blonde, because my reading of that song heavily informed the plot of "Seeker's Point." And Jade, I guess, is associated with Tom Petty's "American Girl" and Guns N' Roses' "Sweet Child o' Mine" because those two songs helped form "Promises, Promises."

So yeah, that does happen occasionally!

:D

Thanks for asking!


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 Post subject: Re: Ask Raven
PostPosted: Thu May 03, 2018 8:39 am 
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And Jade, I guess, is associated with Tom Petty's "American Girl" and Guns N' Roses' "Sweet Child o' Mine" because those two songs helped form "Promises, Promises."

And yet no mention of Naked Eyes...


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 Post subject: Re: Ask Raven
PostPosted: Thu May 03, 2018 10:26 pm 
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And Jade, I guess, is associated with Tom Petty's "American Girl" and Guns N' Roses' "Sweet Child o' Mine" because those two songs helped form "Promises, Promises."

And yet no mention of Naked Eyes...

I forgot about them. I guess I needed something there to remind me...


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 Post subject: Re: Ask Raven
PostPosted: Sun May 06, 2018 11:43 pm 
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It seems to me that Jackie might have one more lesson for Scar. I picture Scar sort of hemming and hawing about the whole thing when she gets to the Ranch, and then, after the story's out, Jackie may have a thing or two to say about shooting Straight...

I have thoughts about this! Which will have to keep for at least another day...


Spoiler

I'M NOT CRYING YOU'RE CRYING!

*certainly does not reach for the Kleenex*

From the mouths of babes, eh? I think the thing this story gets at -- which has always sort of struck me about Nasperge -- is that, for lack of a better way of putting it, he has a vagabond soul. Maybe that comes from being a performer -- and the one thing I feel like I know with certainty about Nasperge is that he's a performer not just as a vocation, but as a way of life, a sense of self. He has to be doing a show, he has to be building a trick, whether he's on stage or not. That's just the way his world works. It can't be any other way, almost. And, like you alluded to in the very first story, one of the fundamental things about a performance is that is has to end. It has to move on. It has to up sticks, and travel, and find new audiences, because, otherwise, the magic disappears. It becomes a routine, rather than an event. (And, you know, maybe that's where part of Nasperge's ineffable sense of sadness comes from. He's living in a routine which to everyone else looks like an event. The only person who will never be amazed by it all is him. He can live vicariously through the audience when he's on stage, but, when the curtain goes down, it's just him, all alone, with no mysteries left. And I wonder if that's one of the things that made his connection with Moira so special. She was a mystery to him, and she never stopped being a mystery. She was like the trick he never knew the secret to.) And it all goes back to that question of why he can't stay -- not with Moira, not with anyone. Moira can't leave, and Nasperge can't stay. Her body won't let her, and his soul won't let him. It's not just the difference between an outlook that spans decades, and an outlook that spans millennia -- although that's a part of it. It's a little deeper than that.

He wants to be happy. But how can he be happy when he can never hold on? It's that performer's life. It's that vagabond soul.

What a beautiful little story, Raven. Thanks so much for sharing!


And Jade, I guess, is associated with Tom Petty's "American Girl" and Guns N' Roses' "Sweet Child o' Mine" because those two songs helped form "Promises, Promises."

And yet no mention of Naked Eyes...

I forgot about them. I guess I needed something there to remind me...

Have I told you guys lately that I love you? :D

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 Post subject: Re: Ask Raven
PostPosted: Mon May 07, 2018 7:47 pm 
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It seems to me that Jackie might have one more lesson for Scar. I picture Scar sort of hemming and hawing about the whole thing when she gets to the Ranch, and then, after the story's out, Jackie may have a thing or two to say about shooting Straight...

I have thoughts about this! Which will have to keep for at least another day...

I look forward to it!

I'M NOT CRYING YOU'RE CRYING!

*certainly does not reach for the Kleenex*

Do you find it odd that nearly every time you read a story like this, the people around you start crying? Weird, huh?

:D

From the mouths of babes, eh? I think the thing this story gets at -- which has always sort of struck me about Nasperge -- is that, for lack of a better way of putting it, he has a vagabond soul. Maybe that comes from being a performer -- and the one thing I feel like I know with certainty about Nasperge is that he's a performer not just as a vocation, but as a way of life, a sense of self. He has to be doing a show, he has to be building a trick, whether he's on stage or not. That's just the way his world works. It can't be any other way, almost. And, like you alluded to in the very first story, one of the fundamental things about a performance is that is has to end. It has to move on. It has to up sticks, and travel, and find new audiences, because, otherwise, the magic disappears. It becomes a routine, rather than an event. (And, you know, maybe that's where part of Nasperge's ineffable sense of sadness comes from. He's living in a routine which to everyone else looks like an event. The only person who will never be amazed by it all is him. He can live vicariously through the audience when he's on stage, but, when the curtain goes down, it's just him, all alone, with no mysteries left. And I wonder if that's one of the things that made his connection with Moira so special. She was a mystery to him, and she never stopped being a mystery. She was like the trick he never knew the secret to.) And it all goes back to that question of why he can't stay -- not with Moira, not with anyone. Moira can't leave, and Nasperge can't stay. Her body won't let her, and his soul won't let him. It's not just the difference between an outlook that spans decades, and an outlook that spans millennia -- although that's a part of it. It's a little deeper than that.

He wants to be happy. But how can he be happy when he can never hold on? It's that performer's life. It's that vagabond soul.

:huh:

I don't know what you're talking about. Clearly, this is just a story of Young Beryl playing with dolls. Clearly...

:D

Joking aside, I was happy with the way this turned out, and you pretty much touched on all the things I think about Nasperge, so I'll just point out a few things I really like about this story. I like that the first sentence is Nasperge disappearing. It's something of a habit for him to do that at the end of stories, so I liked starting out with that and exploring a bit of what is left behind when the Magician pulls his disappearing act.

I like snotty little Astria being annoyed by Nasperge, and annoying her mother with her annoyance. I particularly liked the "In other words, you don't know" line.

And, of course, Young Beryl is pretty much always adorable. I love how she's just engrossed in her own little world here, presumably oblivious to the conversation Moira and Astria are having, and potentially to the conversation Moira and Nasperge had just had. I just find it all a very cute little scene.

What a beautiful little story, Raven. Thanks so much for sharing!

And thank you for reading! And of course for creating Beryl, Astria, and Moira!


And yet no mention of Naked Eyes...

I forgot about them. I guess I needed something there to remind me...

Have I told you guys lately that I love you? :D

You do mention it from time to time, yes.

:D


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 Post subject: Re: Ask Raven
PostPosted: Tue May 08, 2018 10:58 pm 
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I look forward to it!

Shooting Straight in the Dark

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 Post subject: Re: Ask Raven
PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2018 2:55 am 
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I never pictured Jackie as a physically affectionate person with children (or grown friends), but living in a tranquil place for years would change even the Red-Eyed Woman, or rather it would bring out something hidden even from her. Excellent piece as always, OL, thank you for sharing!

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 Post subject: Re: Ask Raven
PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2018 7:15 pm 
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Scar said "...I was so angry I couldn’t see straight."

Now that's some high quality punning right there. I bet you thought I wouldn't notice, didn't you?

Anyway, thanks for posting! I enjoyed this little moment between two friends. Just two friends talking or not talking, casually discussing or not discussing life, family, and the very real possibility of hunting down and killing a jerk. It makes me think of this scene:

Spoiler


Anyway, I do love good Scar stories, and this is a good Scar story. I wonder how the kids at the Ranch reacted to Scar's unexpected return. And, of course, I love the little dropped line about Scar being the little girl stealing sweets with a rattler in her purse. It amuses me that Jackie sort of has a soft spot for that particular con and always associates it with Scar.

Also, is it just me, or does anyone else envision Hush-Hush showing up just in time to be the midwives? I don't know why, but there's something I like about that image.

Thanks, Orcish!


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 Post subject: Re: Ask Raven
PostPosted: Thu May 10, 2018 10:29 pm 
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Since we're on the subject of Scar...

Story Time


Spoiler


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 Post subject: Re: Ask Raven
PostPosted: Thu May 10, 2018 11:19 pm 
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You really should be.

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 Post subject: Re: Ask Raven
PostPosted: Fri May 11, 2018 9:18 am 
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TPmanW wrote:
You really should be.


That one was really strained.

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 Post subject: Re: Ask Raven
PostPosted: Sun May 13, 2018 12:26 am 
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Since we're on the subject of Scar...

Story Time

That sound you just heard was my head exploding! :D

(Also, can I mention how much I love that there's a kid called Kid? That's totally canon, now!)

I never pictured Jackie as a physically affectionate person with children (or grown friends), but living in a tranquil place for years would change even the Red-Eyed Woman, or rather it would bring out something hidden even from her. Excellent piece as always, OL, thank you for sharing!

Thank you for reading, HN! I'm super glad you liked it!

As for Jackie, I agree that I don't think she's physically affectionate as a rule, although she's definitely not averse to contact. We've definitely seen her hugging before, and her failed attempt to hug Hush-Hush is one of my favorite mental images. :D But I think the thing that sort of makes her make sense to me in this particular scene is that, while she's patting Scar on the flank -- just to provide that sort of physical contact, I think, that maybe Scar needs in this moment -- she's still not looking at her most of the time. Jackie's patting Scar, but she's also staring straight ahead. They're not really looking at each other -- they're both kind of staring out into the distance. And I think that's very deliberate. I think that's Jackie's way of both being there for Scar -- being present, providing contact -- while also giving her space, keeping her distance. And the moment when they do look at each other -- when they do finally make eye contact -- that's not Scar's moment of weakness, that's Jackie's moment of weakness. That's the one moment when it's Jackie who needs Scar to reassure her, not the other way around. That's Jackie saying, "please tell me that you know that I would never let anybody hurt you, if I had the power to stop it." So I think it's that combination of closeness and distance which sort of makes Jackie's half of the scene fit with the notion I have of her in my head.


Now that's some high quality punning right there. I bet you thought I wouldn't notice, didn't you?

You know I would never try to sneak a pun past you. :D

Plus, I always like getting to name stories after music, so that was an added bonus, too. :)


I enjoyed this little moment between two friends. Just two friends talking or not talking, casually discussing or not discussing life, family, and the very real possibility of hunting down and killing a jerk. It makes me think of this scene:

Spoiler


Hah, yeah, I forgot that, in the other little micro-story I wrote about this sort of thing, it came up that Jackie promised Trotter that she wasn't going to go around shooting people anymore. Now I'm trying to imagine how that scene played out. I can hear Jackie saying to him, "Don't ask me for promises you know I can't keep," and him saying back, "You promised me that I was enough, that all this was enough. And I wanted to believe you, but now you have to prove it. You have to choose between me -- between us -- and revenge. And I guess I'm just dumb enough to hope that, when it comes right down to it, you'll choose me."

Or something like that.

Granted, I'm sure there are a few escape clauses in Jackie and Trotter's understanding. I don't think there would be any controversy if a non-friend found their way onto the ranch, and had to get shot. And, like we saw in "Mistakes of the Past," there are certain exigencies which Trotter understands Jackie can't walk away from, and he's willing to let her go, just so long as she promises to come back. But riding out for revenge just to soothe her sense of justice is probably off the menu these days. And, actually, if I hadn't written this little story, the alternative I sort of had in mind was Honeysuckle turning up in Straight's room one night, and basically giving him The Talk which Jackie would have given him, if Jackie could still afford to be seen alive these days. Trying to be as cool and intimidating as Red would have been, to lay out the new facts for him -- basically, some version of: "You're out of Scar's life. She doesn't want you. So don't come looking. If she ever wants to see you, then she'll find you. Until then, you don't exist, as far as she's concerned. So consider yourself lucky, and keep out of her way." And that was a lot of fun to think about. I could imagine Jackie coaching Honeysuckle beforehand -- what to say, how to say it, how to carry yourself, how to hold a man's eye. How to keep that snub-nosed boomstick in your lap the whole time -- not pointing at Straight, just casual, but always where he can see it, always so he knows that you can have it on him and turn him into a cloud of red dust before he can even reach his gun, which is hanging from the bedpost, and much too far away. And then I can picture Honeysuckle just turning on a dime, from tough as nails when Straight's in the room, to anxious once he's gone -- "Miss Red, did I do good?"

Anyway, that was a lot of fun to think about, too. :D


Also, is it just me, or does anyone else envision Hush-Hush showing up just in time to be the midwives? I don't know why, but there's something I like about that image.

Somehow, when I picture that, I imagine that it turns out that Hush-Hush actually know nothing about childbirth, and are totally mystified by the process they find themselves elbow-deep in.

The mental images which result are... weird. :)


Anyway, I do love good Scar stories

I do, too! So thanks for adding Scar to our collective mix, Raven! And thanks for reading!

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 Post subject: Re: Ask Raven
PostPosted: Sun May 13, 2018 12:36 pm 
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TPmanW wrote:
You really should be.

That one was really strained.

That sound you just heard was my head exploding! :D

Clearly, this is the greatest thing I have ever written.

Greatest... thing... ever.

:D

(Also, can I mention how much I love that there's a kid called Kid? That's totally canon, now!)

Actually, it already is! :teach:

The kid Scar rescues in "Ticket to Rid" gives his name as Kid, because it's the only thing his "bad-kind-of-bandit" father ever called him. So this story implies that Kid did, in fact, make it to the Ranch.

:)

Hah, yeah, I forgot that, in the other little micro-story I wrote about this sort of thing, it came up that Jackie promised Trotter that she wasn't going to go around shooting people anymore. Now I'm trying to imagine how that scene played out. I can hear Jackie saying to him, "Don't ask me for promises you know I can't keep," and him saying back, "You promised me that I was enough, that all this was enough. And I wanted to believe you, but now you have to prove it. You have to choose between me -- between us -- and revenge. And I guess I'm just dumb enough to hope that, when it comes right down to it, you'll choose me."

Or something like that.

I've always liked that scene, and it came sort of as a package deal with Scar's original story, "Shades of Red." So, when Jackie offers, almost casually, to go kill Straight, I just imagine Trotter, inside getting Scar's room ready and thinking that Jackie was probably casually offering to go kill Straight.

And then Trotter probably thought something like If I can't go and do just one comeback extravaganza, then she can't go around shooting people, no matter how much they deserve it.

Then he started humming full songs and dancing with the bedsheets until one of the kids walked in and then backed out awkwardly with their hands held up.

...

That got weird...

Granted, I'm sure there are a few escape clauses in Jackie and Trotter's understanding. I don't think there would be any controversy if a non-friend found their way onto the ranch, and had to get shot. And, like we saw in "Mistakes of the Past," there are certain exigencies which Trotter understands Jackie can't walk away from, and he's willing to let her go, just so long as she promises to come back. But riding out for revenge just to soothe her sense of justice is probably off the menu these days. And, actually, if I hadn't written this little story, the alternative I sort of had in mind was Honeysuckle turning up in Straight's room one night, and basically giving him The Talk which Jackie would have given him, if Jackie could still afford to be seen alive these days. Trying to be as cool and intimidating as Red would have been, to lay out the new facts for him -- basically, some version of: "You're out of Scar's life. She doesn't want you. So don't come looking. If she ever wants to see you, then she'll find you. Until then, you don't exist, as far as she's concerned. So consider yourself lucky, and keep out of her way." And that was a lot of fun to think about. I could imagine Jackie coaching Honeysuckle beforehand -- what to say, how to say it, how to carry yourself, how to hold a man's eye. How to keep that snub-nosed boomstick in your lap the whole time -- not pointing at Straight, just casual, but always where he can see it, always so he knows that you can have it on him and turn him into a cloud of red dust before he can even reach his gun, which is hanging from the bedpost, and much too far away. And then I can picture Honeysuckle just turning on a dime, from tough as nails when Straight's in the room, to anxious once he's gone -- "Miss Red, did I do good?"

Anyway, that was a lot of fun to think about, too. :D

:D

And now I'm imagining the heated conversation amongst the kids about who gets to go have that little conversation, each one giving their reasons why it should be them. "I've know her the longest!" "Well, I'm more intimidating that you are!" "Well, my room was closer to hers!" And it just devolves from there.


Also, is it just me, or does anyone else envision Hush-Hush showing up just in time to be the midwives? I don't know why, but there's something I like about that image.

Somehow, when I picture that, I imagine that it turns out that Hush-Hush actually know nothing about childbirth, and are totally mystified by the process they find themselves elbow-deep in.

The mental images which result are... weird. :)

Well, their hearts are in the right place. :)


Anyway, I do love good Scar stories

I do, too! So thanks for adding Scar to our collective mix, Raven! And thanks for reading!

:)


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 Post subject: Re: Ask Raven
PostPosted: Mon May 14, 2018 5:12 am 
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Also, is it just me, or does anyone else envision Hush-Hush showing up just in time to be the midwives? I don't know why, but there's something I like about that image.

Somehow, when I picture that, I imagine that it turns out that Hush-Hush actually know nothing about childbirth, and are totally mystified by the process they find themselves elbow-deep in.

The mental images which result are... weird. :)

Well, their hearts are in the right place. :)

What if they found a way of, say, teleporting the baby out of Scar? Which wouldn't be weird... at all... :paranoid:



EDIT: What are your ships? I mean, beyond the already established couples, which romantic pairs of M:EM characters do you find interesting or you'd just want to read about? The answer doesn't have to involve your characters, and I'm not talking about "there might have been something once", like with Nasina and Nasperge.

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