Summer Camp Wrap and Reading Challenge
All in all, I would call my first World Anvil Summer Camp an unmitigated success. I participated. I grew. I picked winners in my sponsored categories. I'm looking forward to next year!
Summer Camp Wrap
I set a goal for Diamond, wanting to write 32 prompts. But as the weeks passed and the prompts kept coming, I found it easier and easier to link them all together into a cohesive story. One that tied all 42 articles together into a single narrative. This is, hands down, the part of my Summer Camp journey that makes me most proud. It took some work, but I feel like it paid off in the end.
Summer Camp Badges
Summer Camp 2023 Platinum Towel 42/42
Just When We Thought We Were Done...
Along came Dimi and gave us two more prompts, right at the end of the month-long journey that is World Anvil Summer Camp. And because we are
we wrote them. All of them. All 42 of them.
We wrote until our brains were numb. We wrote until the words dribbled out of our bleeding fingertips. We wrote way too late at night, and way too early in the morning. We wrote in the interval of shows. We wrote in the park, and in the hotel, and in the car. Some of us even wrote on the plane, and in the loo, and in the bath.
But in the end, we got it done: a bare minimum of 12,600 new words in our world-building projects. And for that monumental achievement...we deserve this digital doodad.
Claim this badge if you answered all 42 prompts for Summer Camp 2023 using [imgblock:4791498] or [img:4791498].
In addition to all of my writing and all of the images I made to go with my writing, I made a badge for everyone who, like me, made it through all 42 article prompts. Inspired by Dimi's need to make it 42, I created the Platinum Towel, because IYKYK, and that makes you...a hoopy frood, in clear possession of your towel, and deserving of a pan-galactic gargle blaster.
And as a cherry on top, I also got to collect the Summer Camp Spooky Shenanigans badge I created for everyone who, like me, enjoys adding a little bit of the haunted, cryptic, or cursed to their world. I did it with my article Threebl's Inspiration, telling the story of how one little ship used the story of a famous ghost ship to avoid a sticky situation.
Where I Started vs. Where I Finished
Looking at the map, and at the places I'd begun to explore, I decided on Tilth, the Island of Glass. I had no idea where that would lead, or what all I would find there. I went in knowing that I needed a place filled to the brim with tension, I needed a place for the adversary to be hiding in plain sight. That's exactly what Tilth, and especially Central Tilth, gave me.
I see so much of my own inner self in what I've written this summer, my longing to know and do everything, my love of lore and books, my helplessness in the face of climate change, so many different aspects of myself have come to the front in very unexpected ways. It's a pretty fascinating journey, and I'm looking forward to seeing where it goes. It's gotten me excited not only to plot my next novel but also to revise and rewrite the first one!
Now that I'm done judging articles, I can finally get started on my August Reading Challenge! And in the fine Anvilite tradition of Twisting the Challenge, instead of reading three Summer Camp articles each from three different prompts, I will be reading three Summer Camp articles each from three different world-builders I admire!!
And so without further ado, here is my list!
As much as I admire E. Christopher Clark's writing, I am even more fascinated by his imagination. His deep knowledge of the fantastic lore that made many of us want to be writers and world builders (Wonderland, Narnia, Oz, etc.) gives both depth and breadth to his writing and world-building. And his blender-like imagination that can weave a narrative of how the Cowardly Lion and Aslan are distant cousins? *chef's kiss* Perfection.
There is both humor and humanity in his writing that makes it easy to pick up and hard to put down. (And yes, Chris, you can quote that on the back of your next project.)
In addition to all of this, Chris is an outstanding member of the community, frequently appearing on World Anvil Twitch streams and hanging out on the World Anvil Discord server, dishing out advice, feedback, and just generally being there to make people feel welcome.
Like Chris, CrazyEddie is another wonderful, friendly, helpful member of the community. I often yell at him (as comments on his articles) to stop reading my journals. This is because we write about many of the same things! Dragons, libraries, lunar eclipses are just a few of the overlapping topics that threaded through both of our Summer Camp collections.
Eddie is a constant reminder to me that different people can write about the same thing, and it will come out in entirely different ways. Whenever I have a down moment while I'm writing or brainstorming or plotting, and I think to myself how no one will be interested in reading about this because so many other people have already written about this...I think about Eddie and how I still love reading his things. And I bully on.
In addition, he's wonderful to bounce ideas around with and is generous and glad-spirited with his help and advice.
It's difficult, sometimes, to determine whether I enjoy Polina "Line" Arteev's artwork or writing more. They are so very good at both. And, keeping with the theme, they are also an outstanding member of the community. That's what makes it so very exciting to be Tomies -- members of the Chapter of the Seven Tomes -- together!
Oh, and did I mention that it was Line that gave us all the incredible concepts for Camp Feral and Dewy Diamonds? That's right, you owe your feral dewdrop status to this wonderful artist, writer, and all-around cheer-leader! Seriously, few people get excited about the success of their friends and acquaintances as Line does for theirs.
In fact, it was Line who inspired me to create the Spooky Shenanigans badge and all the others that I've created since then. Thanks, Line!!
Five, I Meant Five!
Alright, you caught me, I didn't actually know when I set out to read that I would end up reading five from each. But as I looked at their Summer Camp submission pages, I found it super difficult to choose just 3 articles. So I bumped it up to five. Because, damn, these worlds are just so much fun to romp around in! Which is, of course, the point.
Looking Ahead, Moving Forward, Onward & Upward!
The rest of this year is going to be me experimenting with and making new processes to juggle several important projects at once:
- revising and continuing my Adventure April plot,
- revising The Haunting of Library Inn,
- plotting Murder In Spectrum Spire (working title), and
- developing a class based on my new worldbuilding project, World-Building Through the Tarot!
- (...And at least one secret project, as well.)
- (Oh, look...another secret project popped up!)
Revising Adventure April
If you know anything about me and my goals behind Argentii, then you'll already know that I'm doing my best to build it from the ground up as a fantasy world without racism. I want it to be a place where thought and care has been put into the evolutionary circumstances behind ethnic features.
So I was surprised and dismayed when I came across some "fear of the different based on how they look" type racism creeping into my story. Not a cute look. (The understatement is what makes it funny.) So I did a hard stop, and threw all of my energy into getting ready for, and then participating in, Summer Camp.
While the front of my brain was processing all of the new information about Growing Unrest In Central Tilth, the back of my brain was coming up with some alterations to the background of the main character in that plot, Amia Notari. You can read a little bit about it in the article I wrote about Observing the Lunar Eclipse. The changes reflected in that article come from some interesting conversations I've had with Chris L, as well as reading different pieces from his post-racism World of Wizard's Peak.
World of Wizard's Peak
A hole in the world opens up to a different world or reality every day. Come see how the Kirinalos balance politics and innovation against multiversal invasion.
Revising My NaNo Novel
This is the reason I've been doing all of this world-building to begin with! It has been both a convenient and necessary distraction. A procrastination, even. But now, it's time to get serious about the revising.
Y'all, I'm going to print the damn thing. And then...I'm going to sit down and work up a detailed outline of the plot. I know, I know! You weren't expecting that. I might even do a whiteboard here on World Anvil and share it with my Patrons!
Plotting Murder In Spectrum Spire
This is a "later this fall" project because I expect to spend most of October (aka NaNo Prep Month) working on the plot and outline of this. I have a lot of it already laid out just in my Summer Camp articles, so I've got a good start, but I really need to look at the details as well as the climax and conclusion.
To do this, I'm going to be leaning on one of the best hardcore plotters I know, Janet Forbes. Not literally, of course! But she has produced a wealth of content centered around world-building advice and, as an author herself, she has even done some things on plotting! I know, big surprise.
Class: World-Building Through the Tarot
I have big plans for this, and it'll mostly be what I spend World Ember working on, I think. I want to outline the class during the fall (I suspect this will be my procrastination project for a while), and then develop some techniques and advice by actually doing some world-building with the Tarot...and with some other things, as well!
And everything else...will come out as it comes out. Some things are a waiting game. Some things will happen quicker than others. Some things will be much more public than others.
But they will all happen in their own time, and in their own way. And when they do, and when I can, I will share them with you. I promise.