Tuesday, January 17, 2012

The Making of: Icarus & Daedalus: 1st short story, Part 1

I’ve been rather inactive on Sci-Fi Media and so for fun and hopefully for someone’s amusement I’m going to be writing short story and sharing the different steps in this blog. I’m doing it in a word program first then copying and pasting it. I’m doing this at lunch at work. At home, I have other stuff to deal with and a larger project I’m working on, which get priority. I am clearly an amateur writer so don’t take my methods as necessarily something to copy. I’m no expert, just sharing my current process. Today is all about….


I have some headway here. I have a speculative fiction universe I’ve been playing with for years in my head and I’ll just use that setting for this piece. It allows me to fill out the world for future possible projects.


Mix of urban/contemporary fantasy with cyberpunk primarily. It’s a parallel earth so history varies at times. I’m not going full on Turtledove. Secondly, magic is not secret but integrated into general society and has been throughout history. I’ll limit things there for now. Don’t want to digress too much.

Secondly, likely going to set it in my fictional city ala Metropolis and Gotham – Optimus, TN. City founded on the ashes of Linden, TN (sorry folks, I had to put it somewhere with a lower populace) after a major accident. Re-built rapidly. Population roughly 2 million creating sprawl in counties surrounding Perry County.


I’ve wanted to do an urban fantasy version of Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser forever and have played with other duos. I don’t want it to be a straight copy and I want it to reflect my brain and me. Anyone can create do some find/replace searches on Fritz Leiber’s work to modernize it, but that’s unethical, likely illegal and boring. Therefore, it is more the main source of inspiration rather than an adaptation. Although I think an urban fantasy, adaptation of F&GM could be awesome in the right person’s hands and I would love it as a TV series. However, that’s a digression.

I keep a database of cool names I make up and any imagery I associate with it. My action duo will be Icarus Sneed and Daedalus Scott. I have nothing associated with them ahead of time. I know they need to be somewhat opposites, but have enough in common for the Bromance to work.

I do plan to make Icarus the wilder of the two, but I have no intention of making Daedalus be an inventor of any kind despite the naming. It’s a gut choice that I’m fairly well settled on.

I also tend to like my heroes to be heroic even if they are a bit shady. Therefore, they need to have some altruistic tendencies to make me be excited about the project.

Being how I am, I’ve longed to do something Robin Hoodish, so now I’m thinking about Zorro and Iron Monkey (Kung Fu movie). I’m not 100% on the Robin Hood thing, but I’ll test it further.

I have a predilection and start thinking in personality types. I don’t do this all the time, but I check it out.

First Thoughts:

Daedalus – INFJ the counselor – Quiet, sensitive, patient, altruistic, nurturing, artistic, hints at psychic.
Icarus – ESTP the promoter – Loud, charming, popular, confident, impulsive, fun, clever, optimistic, daring, excellent wheeler/dealers, hints of hedonism.
I started a little chart below that will expand as I hit other sites to get the brainpan moving. I check out the Fafhrd/Gray Mouser entry at TV.tropes.org. That leads me to the Bash Brothers entry, then Action Duo. Since both characters will be badasses, Action Duo is irrelevant. Not a sibling team, clearly different names. I want both to be decent at combat and thief skills. I’m leaning Daedalus strong man, Icarus nimble ninja. Magic is much harder to jack-of-all-trades with in my universe so powers are narrow and more internalized closer to kung fu wizards and superheroes. More Naruto-ish than Gandalfy universe. Sort of Red Oni, Blue Oni, but personalities are somewhat reversed.

Since I’m working on duo options, I check out characters in the left hand column to check out possible relationships and wander away from F&GM for now.

Off to Duo Tropes. Browse around. Adventure Duo that consider themselves part of La Resistance and do things Just Like Robin Hood.

Daedalus: quiet/shy, patient, altruistic/ascetic, idealist, pessimist, planner, subtle, reactor/the brakes, magic-centered, Fafhrd,

After visiting TV tropes.com…

Hero, Nice Guy, The Reliable One, Neutral Good, Mighty Glacier, Badass Bookworm, Noble Male, Straight Man

Icarus: loud/charming, impulsive, materialist/hedonistic, realist, optimist, improvise, flashy, actor/the gas pedal, spytech/technophile, Gray Mouser,

After visiting TV tropes.com…

Lancer, The Charmer, Loveable Rogue, Chaotic Good, Fragile Speedster, Badass, Roguish Male, Wise Guy.

I’ll go with this for now. Lots of time wasted wandering around TV tropes, but it can feed the brain. Next time, more brainstorming, probably on their pasts, how they met, why they’re friends, etc.



Budd said...

wow, your creative process is so much more organized and directed. I tend to just start writing and see what comes out. Different strokes and all that, but maybe I should fly less by the seat of my pants. Heck, I should just consistantly write, I never write.

Nick said...

If I remember from nanowrimo or somewhere there are successful writers who planners, pantsers (as in flying by the seat of one's), and somewhere in between.

I am clearly a planner. I find its helpful to know what's supposed to happen in a scene and where it is going, like a road map.

I don't have my system down pat yet. We'll see what happens. Could be a train wreck.

Pat Tillett said...

Okay, I not only don't have the imagination, I'm not organized enough to do any of this...