Tag Archives: works in progress

Episode #69 (Dudes!): Antagonists, Villains, and the Writers’ Challenge

With weeks remaining in 2016, we find ourselves hitting the show landmark that makes us both snigger like fifth graders: SHOW #69!!! We’re not talking about sex, erotica, or naughty bits. We are looking at the antagonist. Sure, the antagonist is a villain, but a villain is not always your antagonist. What are the challenges you face when developing the foil to your protagonist? Where is the line drawn between the mustache-twirler and the complicated antagonist?

Let’s talk about how good it is to be bad…

00:00 —  Introduction

  • As we have said before, we are twelve years old…
  • Can you feel the excitement over Guardians of the Galaxy, Volume 2?
  • Groot. The new Hodor.
  • Nobilis Reed, celebrating a new book and a new house!
  • Show #69? Do we talk about sex, baby? Do we talk about you and me?
  • No, we actually decided to take a high ground for this show, and go low…

02:28 — Episode #69: Antagonists, Villains, and the Writers’ Challenge

  • One writer’s villain is another’s antagonist…sometimes, according to Miss Fancy Pants.
  • New drop-in’s are getting a workout.
  • Tee has already talked about the importance of developing your villains, but it’s worth returning to.
  • This is Pip’s current dilemma in her new fiction coming in 2017. (Something to look forward to…)
  • If you want to know more about editor-of-infinite-awesome, Jennifer Meltzer, pay her a visit at One-Stop Writer Shop!
  • What is Pip’s villain lacking?
  • Pardon the Galaxy Quest tangent…
  • Pip can do villains and antagonists. Look at Geist and the other Books of the Order.
  • Worthy to note: Mysteries handle antagonists different than Epic Fantasy.
  • Then you got antagonists within antagonists ala The Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences.
  • Tee & Pip audition for a Metallica tribute band.
  • Antagonists risk going neglected when “pantsing” through a work-in-progress.
  • The value of having a focus with your antagonist
  • No SPECTRE without Earnst Stavro Bloefeld
  • Lessons in antagonists from William Shakespeare
  • A turning point in the development of the game, Destiny.
    • The Fallen. Bad Guys. Eh.
    • Then we meet the Taken King…
      There’s your focus.
  • Making antagonists sympathetic
    • Done right: Loki and Marvel’s Thor
    • Done wrong: Vader and the Star Wars prequels
  • More on an antagonist’s focus
    • The lack of focus in Star Trek: The Motion Picture versus KHAAAAAAANNNN! 
    • The Phantom Menace. What was it again?
  • Antagonists as the central character of your property
    • Dr. Hannibal Lecter
    • Walter White
    • Dexter Morgan

24:57 — Writers Off the Clock

  • Pip tries to bleep herself. She fails.
  • The creepiest cover of “Edelweiss you will ever hear…”
  • Amazon Studios’ The Man in the High Castle
  • Talking about Dick
    • Lou Anders says it best…
    • Some great films coming from Philip K. Dick’s concepts
  • The details add a degree of creepiness.
  • A quick run-down of the cast form The Man in the High Castle
  • The story of The Man in the High Castle
  • It’s worth Amazon Prime just to have access to this!

34:41 — Voicemail

  • We had dinner with Nobilis…and told him “Share this with the show!”
  • Steve Saylor asks for our favorite Dungeons & Dragons stories.
    • We’re RPGing again, and you can hear all our current adventures at the Geek Wolfpack Podcast
    • Pip’s Memory: When Ashimei enjoyed her own “Leeroy Jenkins” moment…and some things still never change.
    • Tee’s Memory: When Eryk can’t hit the broadside of a barn. The next week, though, Tee goes all John Woo on the “hobogoblins” in range…
  • Nobilis Reed has a new book out…and he asks about shipping books and how you work it into the cost of a book.
    • Pip is a big fan of using Indica.com or Stamps.com, especially when it comes to shipping from our online store.
    • Flat rates are best for domestic shipping for one book.
    • Going international? More than one book? Well, there’s a grey area…

48:13 — Wrapping up

  • Not done yet with 2016!
  • We’ve got some bonus audio we are going to throw in to a feed for the holidays! Thanks for hanging out with out this year!
  • Best. Year. EVAR! For posting shows, that is…
  • ONE MORE SHOW for 2016…with K.T. Brisket. (Sorry, K.T. Bryski.)
  • What we have coming up in 2017…
  • What was your favorite or most informative show in 2016?
    • Call us at 703.791.1701 (now accessible through the Instagram app!)
    • Send Tee email — tee@teemorris.com
    • Send Pip email — pip@pjballantine.com
    • …or find us on social media everywhere.
  • Join us for our final show of the year featuring 100% MORE CANADA! 

Find us on Twitter at either Tee’s or Pip’s account,
leave us a voicemail or questions for the show at 703.791.1701,
or leave us a comment here at the blog.
We’ll talk about it!
And remember, you can find the show on iTunes or Stitcher!
Subscribe, listen, and review.

Enjoy the ride
and we’ll catch you later.

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Episode 54: The Post-Retreat (with Special Guests Piper J Drake, Matthew Drake, and KT Bryski)

 

TSD-back2back_PJ-Matt-KT

In our previous episode of The Shared Desk, Pip, Tee, Matt, and PJ all looked ahead to a week at the Smoky Writers’ Retreat. Now we jump ahead to the end of the week, and this time we are joined by KT Bryski. Cracking over an hour of word count goals, reflections on the fun, and serious talk about moonshine, The Shared Desk presents the Post-Retreat podcast.

Be warned — This way lies shenanigans!

00:00 —  Introduction

  • The drop-in’s reflect the week, pretty much…
  • It’s a NEW drop-in, just for Foo!
  • What is the name of this event?
  • Matt and Tee are ending the week as they started it — with Ole Smoky Moonshine’s Apple Pie!

03:54 — The Post-Retreat Podcast (with Piper, Matt, and KT!)

  • Only one hit of the shine, and Tee’s off the rails already.
  • What we accomplished at the Retreat…
    • Pip finishes The Silver Pharaoh, begins The Iron Lily, and continues into the Broken Galaxy; and she hit a Lowell! Just over 30,000 words accomplished.
    • Piper J Drake rocks her deadline with the True Hero series. 40,000 words in the can.
    • K.T. Bryski was a short story machine. BE AFRAID OF THE AWESOME!
    • Tee finally wrote Little Red Flying Hood, got handouts sorted for an upcoming RT workshop, and kicked off Blackstar Rising. Over 30,000 words in the week.
    • And now, Matthew J Drake, our accidental author…landing in over 20,000 words in a week!
  • A quick tangent on the Apple Pie Moonshine…and then, back to Matt….
  • Matt’s ascension into a full-fledged writer’s life.
  • Just avoid the dreaded note from KT Bryski, editor…
    grumpy-cat-no-1
  • KT Bryski does NOT care for the new drop-in.
  • The story behind Piper’s new drop-in. (We love you, Foo!)
  • That drop-in and Penny Dreadful…KT’s kryptonite.
  • And now—what happened after hours….
    • KT’s favorite time — the presence of Lauren, and composing music with Starla!
    • Matt’s favorite time — the first group reading
    • Jumping back to KT’s off-hours visit to the Titanic Museum…a surprising find in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, and what an experience!
    • Piper J Drake’s favorite time — visiting Ripley’s Aquarium and the somewhat-lubricated, off-hours chatter between authors.
    • Pip’s favorite time — chilling with Alex White
  • The Moonshine of Gatlinburg
  • All the neat touches of our cabin…
    IMG_6608
  • Hugh O’Donnell goes WAR BOY on us all!!! WITNESS HIM!!!
  • What a great experience!
  • Bryan Lincoln almost lost his work on account of a cleaning fit from Tee.
  • Let’s talk about the food of Smoky Writers Retreat!
    • Katie’s favorite meal — the Sticky Toffee Pudding
    • Matt’s favorite meal — the handmade Gnocchi
    • Piper’s favorite meal — the Ribs and GROWN-UP Mac-n-Cheese
    • PIPER CHEATS! STEALS TEE’S TASTY-TASTY REUBENS!!!!
    • Pip’s favorite meal — the Beef Wellington
    • Tee’s favorite meal — the Crepes and the Scrambled Egg Sweet Poatoes
    • Scotch Eggs, Chicken and Waffles, Brisket….cue Deadpool.
  • Tee returns to Piper and Matt about the comparison between Smoky Writers Retreat, Writing Excuses Retreat, and other writing retreats.

1:02:0o — Wrapping up

Find us on Twitter at either Tee’s or Pip’s account,
on Tee, or the Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences on Periscope
leave us a voicemail or question for the show at 703.791.1701,
or leave us a comment here at the blog.

Enjoy the ride
and we’ll catch you later.

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Episode #35: The Shared Desk — RECORDED LIVE AT BALTICON 48!!!

 

TSD-what

Recorded LIVE at Balticon on the final day of the event, Tee and Pip are joined by a lively audience, all of whom take pains to keep Tee in line and muster up the courage to ask Crazy Uncle Charlie a few questions on writing…

….and Crazy Uncle charlie has a few surprises in store for them! It’s a wild ride with the Parsec-nominated podcast, The Shared Desk, at Balticon 48.

00:00 — Introduction

  • Shutting it down like a boss!
  • Reflection on a Balticon Cookout. (Thank God we made it out alive!)
  • We’re keeping this episode on a tight(ish) schedule because we got stuff to sell!

3:35 — Perspectives (or the “I Love You, Man!” Show)

  • Lessons learned at Balticon
    • Pip was enjoying many an “I love you, man!” moments last night with the grown-up Gummi Bears.
    • Sonic Boom in the House!!!!
    • P.C. Haring…put back in his box by Nick (MOTHER F-ING) Fury.
    • Leading into a quick shout-out to our Intern of Awesome, K.T. Bryski.
    • And if you’re wondering what people were laughing at…10265531_10203014335618254_8819894192693187496_o
  • A Perspective on Success
    • There was something about Balticon this year…
    • People were really excited for the Ministry, and yet Pip and I still feel like were the rookies of steampunk.
  • When J.R. Blackwell and Jared Axelrod pull you aside to have a heart-to-heart, you know it’s about to get serious.
  • The audience looks at Tee and thinks “Wow, that’s Tee Morris! What an ass.”
  • And a few thoughts from Sonic Boom…
  • A slip of the tongue…and people pile-on correcting Tee. (But he comes back for more. Always.)
  • The thoughts of Jared and J.R. and Jon Stallard of the 501st: It’s not the same. Can we go back there?
  • But is that a bad thing? Don’t we want to spread the geek love? (Phrasing.)
  • In the middle of Balticon, Pip wanted to tell friends how it is…and that’s a good thing.
  • Pip even said something sweet and endearing to her husband. Kind of.
  • Tee looks back on his first Balticon as P.C. Haring brings Cybrosis in print to the event.
  • Our kid can do math! Huzzah!
  • From Rockstar Treatment…to the Real World.
  • The dangers of losing perspective.
  • Remember — there’s always someone in the playground bigger (and in some cases, meaner) than you.
  • Considering the Up’s and Down’s of 2014
    • Pip’s found her zen.
    • Tee’s winding up and going on mic with his “I love you, man!” moment.
    • OMG! We have to mention TEH KITTEHS of New Zealand!!!
    • When it comes to friends, we are in the 1% tier.
  • What else is going on with us?
    • Our agent is pitching new properties from Tee & Pip
      • Deadly Hollywood, a new property from Pip Ballantine
      • Immortal Progeny, Pip’s Epic Fantasy currently in the works
      • Darkwater, a spinoff title from the world of The Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences featuring Rafe Rafton (100% Elf-Free!)
      • Wolf in the Fold, Tee’s first step into Urban Fantasy
      • The Curse of the Silver Pharaoh, Pip’s Y.A. spinoff from the Ministry universe
  • Tee gives a quick shout-out for a steampunk Y.A. film The Adventurer: The Curse of the Midas Box, the best-kept secret of steampunk films.
  • Yes, we have enjoyed success, but we’re ready to level up.
    • The audience wants to start up a new hashtag — #MoPOForever
    • Pie-in-the-Sky dreams for who would produce the Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences series
    • Shout-out for Hiddlebooks and Jenna Louise-Coleman with Brian Cox and Nathan Fillion on deck….

32:40 — Writing Advice from Crazy Uncle Charlie

  • And the room goes rather silent as Charlie enters the room…
  • Sonic Boom is not fooled.
  • Crazy Uncle Charlie is having a tough time knowing where he is…
  • Question #1: Writer has a short story, popular with his peer readers, but he’s having a tough time selling it. What should he do?
    • Charlie is momentarily distracted by Lauren “Scribe” Harris. (Could Charlie have a potential stalker on his hands?)
    • And Charlie comes out of box, swinging…
    • Hold on….is Charlie making sense?
    • And then, we come back to the Charlie we know and love.
  • Question #2: Writer wants to know the sweet spot between “creative inebriation” and “rat-faced hammered” for consuming alcohol.
    • Charlie reveals the line between inebriation and genius. It is cotton balls.
    • Writing drunk is like drunk tweeting. Think before you plot.
    • Be responsible for the words you herd. (Holy cow — Charlie is working a new strategy in writing advice!)
  • Question #3: Writer wants to skip the laborious process f writing and editing and just get to sharing the story. How do you develop the discipline?
    • The Concept is the Process, and the Process is the Concept
    • What kind of writer are you? A Pantser or a Plotter. (Charlie doesn’t believe in pants.)
    • Find your routine and stick with it.
  • Question #4: Why do first-time writers balk at the end of projects? Is it a fear of failure? how do we get past that stumbling block?
    • That fear never goes away.
    • Every new title is a challenge, a new place for the bar to be set.
    • Let the fear fuel you.
  • Charlie blanks out for a moment, then pulls it together for a giveaway.
  •  And there is jubilation over the Shared Desk’s Mega-Prize Pack and Super-Prize Pack…
  • …hold on — what’s this third prize pack Charlie is giving away?!

47:36 — The Wrap-Up

  • THAT. WAS. CLOSE.
  • Giving The Shared Desk sign-off very quickly…
  • Now — let’s sell some books!
  • YES! We want your feedback — 703.791.1701

48:26 — Warm, Fizzy, Sign-Off

 

Find us on Twitter at either Tee’s or Pip’s account,
leave us a voicemail or question for the show at 703.791.1701,
or leave us a comment here at the blog.

Enjoy the ride
and we’ll catch you later.

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Episode #27: Talking about Works-in-Progress

TSD-overtheshoulder

It’s taken us a while to get back to the miss but get back to the miss we did! Pip and I took a few minutes before a Writers’ Retreat to fire up the studio and let loose their tongues on works-in-progress. What’s coming down the pike? What will be percolating while in Pigeon Forge? And is it a good idea to talk about works-in-progress? It’s back in black for Pip Ballantine and Tee Morris on this, the first show of 2014!

00:00 — Introduction

  • Working to get back your trust…
  • The Shared Desk returns! (And what do you know — more drop-in’s!)
  • Nine years ago, MOREVI went live. Where did the time go?
  • Tee laments on the lost “new” job.
  • Vinnie over at Trinity Manassas Church gives Tee a little perspective
  • A Writer’s Retreat is now in our future!
    • Organized by Alex White
    • What Pip is looking forward to.
    • Living like rock stars for five days!
    • Woah! Tee’s sleeping with his new boss!!!
  • A promise of recording audio at the Writers’ Retreat.and other audio that we captured…
  • Big thanks for the writing keeping us sane…
08:11 — Talking about Works-in-Progress 
  • Tee reflects on The Survival Guide to Writing Fantasy.
  • Pip and Tee disagree on revealing works-in-progress
    • Pip likes teasing her audience.
    • We have found a new favorite drop-in for Pip.
  • Talking about works-in-progress is good.
    • Shows the audience you have new stuff in the works.
    • Actually delivering on an idea as opposed to just talking about it.
    • Pip’s new work-in-progress — The Immortal Prodgeny
  • Talking about works-in-progress is bad
    • Tee Morris and Billibub Baddings
    • How the Powerpuff Girls worries Tee about returning to the Billibub Baddings Mysteries
  • Tee’s work-in-progress — Wolf in the Fold
    • Has Tee done urban fantasy before?
    • Will this be a spoof or will Tee turn tropes on their head?
  • Another idea from Tee — Villainy LLC
    • No, this is not Playing for Keeps. It’s more like The Tick…taken to the next level.
    • In this story, Tee goes after Richmond and Social Media douchebags.
    • If NYC and the agents pass on it, Tee can always go the self-publishing route.
  • Anxieties on sharing works-in-progress
  • Pip’s attitude on sharing works-in-progress with the readers: FOLLOW THROUGH!
  • Another idea taking shape for Pip: Verity Fitzroy and the Ministry Seven in The Mystery of the Silver Pharaoh.
  • And to add to the retreat’s schedule — Tee and Pip’s next idea: Broken.
  • Continuing to look ahead with the Ministry in 2014…
  • Upcoming news on Pip’s latest Pip blanks on her special New Zealand day…

30:30  — The Wrap-Up

  • Keeping it simple on account of the upcoming road trip.
  • Pip gives Tee a truly “Bazinga” moment….but Tee doesn’t play that drop-in.
  • Write by the Rails is holding a blog tour! Come join us!
  • What’s coming soon…
  • Thank you, everyone, for the kindness and support through the false start that was Tee’s “new” job.
  • And Tee pulls out a flawless ending. Not too shabby after nine years….
 
Find us on Twitter at either Tee’s or Pip’s account,
leave us a voicemail or question for the show at 703.791.1701,
or leave us a comment here at the blog.
Enjoy the ride
and we’ll catch you later.

 

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