Sunday, November 6, 2011

A bit from my NaNoWriMo book so far, or "Peering into the depth of madness."

Just a small, random segment from the book for NaNoWriMo:

Doing a breath check (You know. That thing that doesn't actually work where you breath quickly into your palm and smell it to determine your breath quality.) and straightening my hair with my other hand, I was hopefully presentable enough. Not for Mrs. Zheng's eye, because she never really seemed to care about my appearance, but because Anya was invariably with her, and... Well, you can probably guess. Anya's only the most beautiful woman in the world. Just saying.

I opened the door to reveal Mrs. Zheng, Anya, and... Her boyfriend. Yeah, I forgot to mention him. Arnold. Jerk. The worst person on the planet. Scum. Satan. Seriously, Anya could do better. Ignore the fact that he's the starting quarterback at his school and will probably play professional football the moment he's out of school. Ignore his good looks and charm. And muscles. Ignore those too. He's just a real jerk. And a jock. I don't understand why she's so in love with him. Well, she's not in love with him. She just likes him a lot. He's cute.

Not that she's superficial. She's not. She's amazing. Intelligent. Beautiful. Cute. Everything. And he's an idiot. Ugh.

Mrs. Zheng got out of the passenger side of the dark red Buick holding a massive pot filled with the chicken soup she'd mentioned. At least, Arnold not withstanding, I would get the world's best chicken soup out of the deal. Anya, amazing, wonderful, beautiful, perfect Anya got out of the driver's side, with stupid, ugly, moronic, insipid Arnold getting out of the back driver's side. It's like he wears shirts that his muscles squeeze out of on purpose.

Not that I'm some horribly scrawny guy. I mean I mostly am. But that's not the point. It doesn't matter how much someone has good looks. It doesn't even matter how much money someone has, though both Arnold's parents and myself have it. It matters what kind of person you are. Arnold is a douchebag.

The three of them, now outside of the vehicle, began walking to my house, which is not a mansion, just so you know. Yes, I have a security gate, but my house is only three stories. That's still big, I get it, but there's only so much room one man can handle.

Mrs. Zheng was always the first through the door to any house she visited, having a distinct dislike of being outdoors at all. She gave me her usual nod she was already inside. And though I tried to take the pot of soup from her, she gave me a look, a quick one, that told me if I so much as touched the pot my hands would be removed from my wrists and she'd use her teeth to do it. Anya followed her and gave me that damn smile.

It's the kind of smile that makes you forget about the world around you. Where even the simplest movements of her mouth make me think she created that very smile for me, and for me alone. It is, without a doubt, the world's most amazing smile. And every time I see her even grin a little, I fall into a near trance of giddiness hoping to never have to come out of it, hoping that if I do come out of it, she'll be there waiting to embrace me and we can run off into the sunset for our wonderfully cliché and cheesy declaration of love.

And nothing punctures that bubble better than the burly form of Arnold walking with his self-righteous strut behind the perfect woman he so thanklessly calls his girlfriend. God. I hate him. And his stupid knowing nod that he always gives me. Which he gave me then. With that grin.

See, look who I'm dating, his eyes silent say to me.

Yeah, she's a catch, my eyes say pathetically in return. But what I'm really thinking is:

Go die in a fire, you ugly jock piece of crap.

Thursday, October 27, 2011


So... I'm doing it. I will be, for the first time, participating in National Novel Writing Month.

Last year, around this time, I was suffering from heart break after being jilted by someone I erroneously considered to be the mystical "One", was hating the fact that I wasn't getting to see my kids for the holidays, and floundering in general misery, compounded by a pair of friends who felt that the world was a place where their problems (however minuscule they were in the grand scheme of everything) were of everyone's sole and intense concern. October, going into November last year, was crap.

That said, it wasn't like my problems were grandiose or anything like that. Except for missing my children, I was actually doing okay for myself. Just miserable in a way that really isn't that important.

But this year, things changed. I'm happier, though not perfectly happy. Maybe happy isn't even the right word. I'm driven. By something that resembles insanity. Megalomania. Zeal.

This year, I get my kids for the holidays, a true blessing, and I've found myself in a group of creative people that have the sense of drive I've been having myself for some time. And they want to do things. They don't want to sit around and complain that everyone else is doing something. They want to do. I'm the kind of person who likes to accomplish things. I fit right in to this group.

Of course, this group is a filmmaking group, and I will admit that my first passion is film. The visual medium is the one that has always really appealed to me on so many levels, spiritual, psychological, physical, it doesn't matter. It fulfills everything for me.

But, that said, I'm still a writer. And I love the art of prose. And I feel like I want to do more. That no matter what I do, I'm not doing enough and that I need to keep moving. Keep creating. I shouldn't have to need an event like NaNoWriMo to motivate me, but it's a chance to get into the all important habit of not stopping. Because any moment I'm not writing or creating is a moment someone else is.

I want this to be a positive experience and I feel like I've scratched the surface, this year, of what it's like to achieve. Instead of throwing unfair hate at others for misfortune that wasn't the fault of anyone but myself, instead of wallowing in self pity because I might have been left in the dust of a great idea. In fact, I'm proud of the groups here, be it the Four Corners Filmmakers or the Void Zone crew. We've accomplished. And it's a great feeling.

But NaNoWriMo is a personal accomplishment. I won't base all my happiness on whether or not I successfully finish a novel. But I will put everything I can into it. I think I'll reserve my true happiness for my children. But my personal triumph will be centered around writing, and the continued movement forward, in both projects personal and with groups.

The future has the potential to be bright, and I feel like November has something great in store.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Quasi psuedo redundancies, or "How to spot the truth in the fiction."

After surviving drama that really belonged in a high school study hall and not in the business plans of adults, I was forced to reexamine a lot of avenues of choice in my life. After having been accused of being an idea thief and the like (although never directly, odd though that might be) and watching the seeming breakdown of sanity in someone I considered a friend, I had to think about who I was and what I wanted.

It's odd, starting out with noble intentions and realizing that your mid to late 20's were not quite the drama-free zone you'd hoped for. And I hoped it so much. I remember my early 20's, thinking that, as my big relationship of that time came to end (thankfully) this wouldn't happen again as I got older. But it did.

I was worried that after all of this, I would be fighting for my reputation with people, but that turned out not to be necessary. Quite the opposite, in fact, as I received a lot of understanding pats on the back, as many people in this area understood the individuals who were throwing this nonsense at me, and basically told me to shrug it off, this was apparently standard practice.

And, of course, in retrospect, the people involved were some of the most insecure people on the planet. And that's important later in this blog.

So, as I said, reconsidered some ideas.

I've been lucky enough to fall in with a group of people who have been making films for a while now, and doing so in the greatest and noblest of ways; by the weight of their own willpower have they made these films. Not studio, not financed. Out of their own pocket. On their strength. And I love it.

After this drama "resolved" (I unfortunately feel like I'll never get any real closure out of this) I decided I was going to become a full-fledged student to this group, and that I wasn't going to allow myself to fall in to the same misplaced egoism and sophomoric petulance that was directed at me and (most unfairly and with no justification) at my girlfriend.

So, I've been working on everything I can to help this group and to get better at all of this.

And now we get to the point of this blog. See, this won't be a vent session of the events of the Summer. Aside from the unnecessary drama, this was a good Summer. Entirely because of my kids, but still. And the individuals in question, who have piled hate on me and did so without ever addressing anything with me... I wish them the best. Ultimately, they're good people. They're just young. And we all grow differently in different areas. And, at the end of it all, I hope the best for them and that maybe, someday, we'll be friends again.

It was my own personal revelations that led me to understand something about people. It's nothing new. Psychology has already really established this. But it wasn't until I saw it first hand that I noticed it in every group; insecurity.

Every single group, clique, whatever, always has this subgroup of individuals that is so filled with insecurity that they resort to varying levels of dishonesty, sometimes with themselves, sometimes with others, sometimes both, to somehow cover their own perceived weaknesses.

And it's astonishing.

In particular, I hang out with nerds. I hate, to some extent, using that word. Partially because I constantly get corrected on the differences between nerds/geeks/dorks, and that annoys the hell out of me. (I will use nerd and geek interchangeably; if you don't like that... I don't care.) Also, I just don't like using this particular term. Just don't like. But, regardless, I hang out with nerds.

This might be something I inherited from my father, this fascination with geek culture, but it's solidly there. I don't really participate in a lot of it, but then I've not participated in much of any clique. I usually sit back and watch, recording what they do for future story ideas and the like. I just ended up liking nerds and so I spend a lot of time with them.

As a result of my self changes, I've taken to watching nerds again and observing them. I've been writing a lot, so it seemed logical to attach to a group again. And this is when I discovered the nerd version of the insecure subgroup. And they are a fascinating bunch.

Instead of the kind of self deceit others have, where they convince themselves that they aren't the problem and lie about the actions of others to justify their own actions, nerds almost seem to develop this self loathing, where they are worried they are inadequate, so much so, their friends will invariably reject them. Instead of relying on the strength of their own character, they turn themselves almost into these caricatures, telling stories about their accomplishments which they really read about on the internet, their nonexistent wealth, and how easy it is for them to meet women, though you never meet any of these girls.

At first, I was almost kind of charmed by this, in an odd, sick way. It amused me, because it only takes a bit of research to see through all of these lies, but they were so dang elaborate that I had to tip my hat to them for the orchestration of this fictional facade that could almost be believable if it wasn't so far fetched. And a few I have met are so good at it that they can throw in just enough truth that they can give their false universe some shield against pressing.

In fact, one of the more well deserved stereotypes present in nerd culture, that of intelligence, is present here as well; they are good enough at deductive reasoning to fake their way through any sort of conversation, making themselves appear experts on any given subject.

My initial interest here, before I get to my change in position on these folks, was because I needed a newer character concept that I'd never really written about before. I thought I had it here.

But as I said, at first, I was charmed by it. Later, it became almost frustrating. Because not one person was addressing this with any of them. Nobody said anything, letting these stories carry on. Except for private discussions, where they carry on about how crazy these tales are.

Being the blunt person I tend to be, I thought there was no way I could hold myself in check and thought I might speak my mind at any moment. Yet I found myself just as tight-lipped as everyone else, keeping any thoughts of telling these individuals of such fashionably fictitious lifestyles that they're full of it wrapped up in my mind and out of the real world.

And the only reason I could fathom was because of how they might react to being called out in such an obvious fashion. You see, many of them had been building up these lies about themselves up over time, stating them as fact so consistently over years (yes, years) that they've almost come to believe them themselves. You might ask, "Is that any way to live?" and you'd be asking a very valid question, because it isn't.

Yet, here they are. And I count a number among my friends. One in particular is a very good friend. And no one has ever said anything to him for fear that he might disappear forever if the lies he's constructed over the past five years were undermined. Disappear or worse.

And that's where it's a bit frightening. He's described real women that I've met as being former girlfriends. And following up, I've learned they were never anything of the sort. He's described a great many specifics about who he is, things that would be public information, but where there is no information to be found. But he's so darn insistent, not confident, but insistent that this information is fact. He's, to an actual expert's face, described information that this expert actually knew better, that this expert was patently wrong and that he actually knew something the expert didn't.

Obviously, I'm being vague in this blog. And you might ask why even blog about this? But it was a disappointment in myself and my inability to write about a subject that I specifically looked into developing a story around. I had developed a character, had back story, everything. And now I find, just as I and everyone else can't call out these people on their falsehoods, I also can't write a fiction inspired by them.

Maybe one of you out there can. And if you find writing about something this psychotic interesting, have fun. Normally I would. Psychoses often offer interesting character concepts and I enjoy exploring them. But this one just unnerved me on a personal level enough that I couldn't write about it.

And if you're worried about any of these guys, or my good friend in particular, reading this blog and realizing it's him, worry not, because;

A) He's never going to read this blog. He doesn't read blogs. And

B) He probably wouldn't realize I was talking about him. And if he did, he wouldn't acknowledge it, subconsciously hoping that I'd stick to my inability to not address it.

Is this all incredibly unhealthy?


Is it going to change?

I don't know.

And that's the truth. Sadly.


Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Time to start using this blog, or "It's just been sitting here, collecting dust."

This is, of course, my blog. Unlike the blog over at Out of the Void Productions this is a more personal one.

Who am I? Well, the name above says WC Briton, but that would be the pseudonym. If you follow Out of the Void, I'm Brit Ward. If you don't, well... I'm still Brit Ward.

The purpose of this blog is more of a personal vent more than anything else. A place to just throw my thoughts out there, whether my thoughts be relevant or not. In fact, they usually aren't. Not to most of you out there, nor should they automatically be. Maybe you end up being a fan. Maybe not. Either way, I'm not the main character of your story. You are. So it will never bother me that you are more concerned with your bills, kids' practices, or whatever else is going on in your life. You need to be more concerned with those things. I'm just an author.

But I'm still going to post these blogs.

Why the pseudonym? Well, it was a dumb joke. I tried to come up with the most pretentious name I could. In retrospect, probably should have just stuck with Brit Ward. But, I've kind of enjoyed having this moniker to work under. Somehow it lets me separate the two personalities (that of the serious, cynical author and the fun-loving, happy film-maker) and discuss things separately.

So, here we are. These will never be well ordered thoughts or essays. Just scattered ramblings or vent sessions to ease my mind. You've been warned.

That said, I'll try to never get really political and, when I do get political, I'll try to keep it reasonably balanced. That wasn't a promise. I said try. But I like all of the Out of the Void fans, liberal, conservative, or otherwise. You're all entitled to your opinions and I'm not about to preach to you. I hate preaching. And the vast majority of you, regardless of your political ideas are intelligent individuals who can hold solid, linear arguments. I'm hoping that if I offend you, you'll understand that wasn't my intent.

There's not much to talk about today. Though, I recently found hope again, especially for the future of what I'm trying to do here.

The Void Zone podcast was an accident, in many ways. Since the first day I'd ever listened to SModcast or The Instance, my two favorite podcasts, I knew that someday I wanted a podcast. Not in the same way a young man or woman knows they want to be an astronaut, or that they want to be a doctor. More of a "wouldn't it be cool" way.

It took a long time for a specific idea for a podcast to jump out at me, and it was Nick Michael, one of my Void Zone compatriots who suggested we do a podcast about movies since Out of the Void is a film group and we all like movies. It made sense and I jumped in head first.

I will also use this blog to post short stories and other writing news. I want to rewrite my first novel a little bit, so I might use this space to talk about that a little, as well. I've seen a ton of people selling short stories on Amazon and I find that I can't do it. Not even selling them for a dollar. I could sell a novella for a buck, but not short stories. So, when I do write something short, I am probably going to just publish them here for people to read for free. And I'm probably going to write short screenplay adaptations of them, which I'll also leave up here, copyright intact, but something that people can use freely as long as the attribution is there, so that beginning filmmakers can have stuff to work on and get better at the craft. I could be the Kevin MacLeod of screenwriting.

Not that it's the hardest thing in the world to write a short film. But not everyone's a writer. I don't know yet. We'll see.

So, stay tuned, you'll hear more from me in the coming months.


Tuesday, March 22, 2011


Welcome to the blog of WC Briton, author of The Brimm-Stone Chapter. This will be where I post my inane rants and general craziness. Also, stuff about my writing. Enjoy!