So, it’s finally done.
(Typing this from my phone, so… here’s hoping I don’t break the entire site.)
Unless you are just starting reading my stories (hoo boy), you will have noticed the last main story update was in June.
There’s been a lot going on — the entire series is now also available on AO3, and since I have an archive of everything I will be creating a mass-edition PDF with the entire span of my works. (SoonTM).
But the updates stopped because I am doing something, in the words of my Discord readers, as “completely insane”
To wit, I am running a series of roleplaying scenarios based in the PVME, around the 1-year mark after Shepard’s death. The characters in these will be showing up in the main chapters, as will various bits of backstory.
Some of this is already in Bird of Hermes. BOH2: The Monster with a Hundred Heads, will cover a mess involving yet another secretive organization, the Hecatoncheires, a group devoted to trying to figure out all the messes going on behind the scenes as part of a three-way power battle between anomalous control organizations.
The Xabiar files on the Traverse and Terminus also play a HUGE role as both the Broker Fight and the end game occur there. Once all the support pieces are in place (remember, I hate plot holes) then the next couple of chapters won’t take that long.
I have some other stuff to keep y’all happy, though: more military files from DH and the last half of Bird of Hermes, plus this year’s Writecon efforts and maaaaybe a Lion’s chapter for Christmas. We’ll see.
The yearly Death March is arriving November 28th, but since we already tackled the Apple 14 mess maybe it won’t be so bad. We’ll see.
Right now, the next chapter is with the Editing Gang and I am finally working on several other pieces.
Hopefully, out this weekend. We’ll see. It is not as long as other chapters, but I think it’s interesting enough for the length.
Haven’t done much with the site recently… times have been somewhat straining, both financially and emotionally. I’ve never had a good update schedule but I’m aware one update a year isn’t a good look.
Depending on how things go over the next year, I could push out things faster or struggle with writer’s block and other issues until November.
Thank all of you for patience and understanding.
So, if you are following my work, you know I didn’t get a lot accomplished in 2021. Aside from COVID, there’s reasons for that.
We got a few things done;
- Richard Manswell file
- First parts of the Omega Doc
- The ‘early human history’ document is done.
- TWCD two chapters
- Updates to Memories, Order of Battle, and Bird of Hermes
- Writecon 2021 completed
- Wave 2 RP completed (at last)
But I didn’t get a lot of writing done for, as I said, several reasons. The biggest of which was the split of the company I work for, which resulted in a literally months-long Death March that (no kidding) ended up with over 20 people dead of COVID, 4 of heart attacks, 40 or so quitting, and a lot of overtime
I think from July to December I never had a full eight hours sleep except on Sundays, and that my average work week went from 40-42 hours to 68-74 hours. And in December and early January that was higher.
Things are FINALLY starting to calm down, so 2022 should see a lot more productive work done than 2021. I am about a third done with the next chapter, but i have to expand on what the Editing Gang has suggested so the chapter will be split in two. That will come out in February, as I have a week off then.
In a few more weeks I will do both the “reviews of the 2021 Writecon” and my usual “Thanks to” piece. I am mostly resting today as the death marches are finally over and we go back to normal hours and rotations.
I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday. I got a lot of Christmas Cards from you (the Lethath one was the best) and I might make a mailing list in the Discord for people to exchange cards with each other for Birthdays and things like that.
Please be safe. Please be kind. Please be aware of the needs of others. And please read the fics of Xabiar, Aberron, TheElderOne, PallanMinerva, and the others I have recommended.
Unless you live under a rock, you will know by now that
- Apple is launching the new iPhone
- I work in a business that deals with returns and reverse logistics
- Verizon and Comcast have trade-in plans
- Everyone wants a new iPhone
This translates into a massive spike of incoming returns to where I work, GXO. By ‘massive’ I mean dozens of 18-wheeler trailers with 20-25 pallets of phones.
Millions of phones.
While we normally have ‘peak’ in late November in prep for Christmas, this year we are kicking off our intense work period very early — the Death March, as it is called, known for 14 hour work days, very short SLA turnaround, and madness.
As such I expect that my time and effort on working on the fic may suffer. I am just now recovering from my back messing up and hopefully this won’t set it off again.
The next chapter of TWCD is about half done. I have several docs by DarkHorse that I can put up as well as a large amount of Bird of Hermes stuff I may get out, but I don’t expect a chapter coming out in September at all.
Went ahead and pulled the trigger early.
As with a lot of TWCD, there’s some significant alterations from canon. I don’t do this just to do a ‘fix fic’ type of thing, but to address serious structural issues in the games that have long bothered me.
Shepard’s return being so low-key and unimportant in the game was one thing but how she was dealt with by the Council truly boggled the mind. Anderson’s reactions (and Udina’s) were also … off. Wrong.
I don’t usually criticize Bioware on actions they took in making the game work that induce plot holes — some things are by nature of gameplay unavoidable. But it felt lazy to treat her return as a button press and a meme about shops on the Citadel.
We’ll see if I made this any better. As for the next chapter, we’ll have to see if work is as calm next week as it was this week.
Between the combination of Father’s Day and Juneteenth I probably won’t get any writing done this weekend, or RP. But I am always open to questions, either here, on my Discord, or on FF.net via private message.
Assuming nothing else changes, the next chapter of TWCD comes out the 20th and I’m working on the chapter after that.
I may get around to the next chapter of the Tech Guide — trying to get as much done as possible while work is (relatively) calm.
Took a lot longer than it should have, mostly due to work and family events. I am working on the next chapter now, but I was working on this on in February, so…
Haven’t posted anything in months since my schedule has been so hectic I haven’t done anything in months. For now, I’ve finally caught up on sleep and sent the first half of the next chapter to the Editing Gang.
As always, April sucks, but I’d like to get this done and out by May at the latest. We’ll have to see.
Happy 2021 to everyone who reads my stuff.
2020 was not, as I’ve said elsewhere, the best of years. However, in terms of the fic we did get at least a little accomplished:
- First, four chapters of TWCD were completed. That’s very slow, but then again it was about 110,000 words. I had writers block in how to proceed with the story, and since I shifted direction things are now easier to write.
- New STG Reports (Vigil Pt 2, P., Rachel Florez, Richard Williams, Yonis Chu) and an additional few chapters to the STG Handbook
- The new Bird of Hermes series was launched
- The 2020 PV WriteCon was completed and was a smashing success
- Xabiar’s completed Citadel document, expanding hugely on the timeline, politics, and capacities of the setting
- The launch and development of the PV RPG System and the RP games, which has gone wonderfully so far
There’s also some non-fic related things we’ve done:
- The creation of a PV Minecraft Server
- The creation of a place for people to discuss problems and issues in Personal-space on our Discord
- A staggering 199 members on the Discord
- A series of music videos and two world-building videos
- The production of the Uressa T’Shora art and progress on the Shepard Wedding Scene.
- Expansion of Patreon integration, benefits, and merch
I’d like to take the time to thank some people:
Pallan Minerva/Comma: as always expected from him, Comma continued to provide guidance, moderation, leadership, fic feedback, advice, and contributions to the fic. He did this WHILE both going to college full time (and graduating) in the midst of this COVID bullshit, and while managing his own server community and writing his amazing Fate Stay/Night fic story which has surpassed my own in popularity. Comma is his own harshest critic but he’s accomplished more in a single year than some people do in a decade.
Nimiraj : as always, provides strength and comfort. Her insight into the Sara/Liara rebonding section was critical (as with all the relationship pieces) as well as listening to all my self-pitying bullshit and keeping me cheered up is sometimes the only reason I keep going.
Xabiar: Despite the literally titanic efforts on his own fiction (nine chapters of his main fic, twelve chapters of TITANOMACH, twenty seven chapters of the XCOM Files and God only knows what else), the man managed to somehow take the scattered, disorganized and in some cases self-contradicting lore bits I had to create the Citadel Files, nearly 200k words of lore, expansion, and new ideas and characters — in under a freaking year. Very much appreciated, especially on top of running his own community.
Wele: Not only a driving force in working on art for the PV, Wele has been a key player in the success of the Personal Space in the discord chat. Her creation of the asari Sigils and her work on the Wedding Scene hasn’t slowed down her other efforts, on top of all the issues she has. You are appreciated very much.
The Elder One: I can never thank TEO enough for all he does in the background that no one even sees, from fixing up stupid typos and finding plot holes to keeping an eye on the chat. Again, this is on top of working on all his own projects and dealing with the COVID mess.
EnigmaticOne and Mooloor: These two took strong and energetic leads on the RPG Project, taking the insanely stupid and useless half-ass ruleset I gave them and turning it into a finely tuned product that helped produce what I feel was outstanding gameplay. They have continued to refine and expand the rules and at this point deserve a lot more credit for the Fic-RP’s success than I do. EnigmaticOne also went above and beyond the call of duty to collate and edit the RP logs into a format to be turned into stories.
B.W.: B.W.’s entry into the PV WriteCon was incredibly good, some of the best writing any of us have ever seen! Their work in discussing some aspects of where I’m going with the fic and other contributions have also been of seriously important help!
Jacob: Last but not least, Jacob — despite some personal issues — came back strong in 2020 to throw down both edits to the files he’d already done and an incredible piece on Richard Manswell. Jacob remains one of the few people I trust to handle my lore and build on it without oversight and I am deeply humbled by his contributions.
A few others deserve thanks as well:
Sevoris for managing the SIENCE with his usual deft tough
Bish09 for handling, organizing and managing the Gaming Discord
Kep for some very interesting and useful art that has given me ideas.
Krieg for returning to the chat in a far more productive fashion!
Mrosera for keeping the Warframe Clan organized and expanding it greatly!
DaSkyBurner for taking on the challenge of being our Minecraft Server Admin, out of his own pocket I might add
EternalConcern for adding many much needed (and becursed) emotes
SodiumEnriched/Fperson1 for being the original IsLurk and showing everyone how to go from lurker to key member.
JimHero, Eggnogui, DevilNero, Kinnix, Nolan, Neprau, Samael, and Seras for being Bro-Tier
Spicy for being the true and undisputed Lord of Cursed
Of course, I appreciate each and every person who reads, comments, reviews, or shows up in chat.
What does 2021 hold? Ideally, things will improve. COVID vaccines and perhaps a return of more conventional normalcy would help a great deal. As for the fic…
The Editing Gang has indicated — and repeatedly — that this shit is beginning to drag. I will endeavor to wrap things up in a way that does not take too long, but this is where people start dying and actually staying dead.
As for my personal condition… still have knee, back and wrist issues. Due to some medical complications, my finances are shit, and work remains hectic. Purportedly sometime this year we are moving to a new platform, so I expect a great deal of trouble with that since we are adding many new clients. The 2021 Death March is likely to be hellish.
However, I’m still alive, still in good health, and still trolling. I hope you all had a happy holiday season and have a wonderful new year, and that things get better, and not…
Well, you know, not like the Days of Iron. <voncern.jpg>