Geoffrey Long
Tip of the Quill: Archives
NaNoWriMo update: Yay Ugh Yay Ugh.

A bit of a hiccup in my NaNoWriMo scribblings, due to this turning out to be an incredibly tempestuous week (and it's only Tuesday). Big news is breaking here in the Comparative Media Studies program at MIT, which I'll link to as soon as it is officially announced... And now the cat is out of the bag: Henry Jenkins III, my friend and mentor and advisor and academic hero, is leaving MIT for USC. After that announcement, suffice it to say that I didn't feel much like writing yesterday.

Oh, I still banged out about 500 words, but that didn't happen until after midnight, and the scene that resulted is likely to be the first thing that I've ever written that I may wind up self-censoring out of a project. Most of the evening yesterday was devoured by a freelance consulting project I'm working on, for which I've been mucking about in the wonderful and woolly world of online video, so between that and the weird vibes here at the office, yesterday was a wash for NaNo'ing.

Today, however, has been an altogether different kettle of fish. I woke up with a little click in the back of my head, and like the tumblers in a lock, several very important pieces fell into place for the story. I realized that something I'd put in as more or less a throwaway concept was actually the cleverly-disguised key to making the third act work and giving my protagonists a way to defeat the villains, which is awesome, and that I suddenly had a very strong idea about how Children of Winter, Children of Wolves will end, and I even had an idea about what the main plot of the third book, tentatively titled The Wild Hunt, will be and how it will unfold – and until this morning I didn't even know that there was a third book in the wings. That was fantastic all on its own...

And then I checked my e-mail.

This morning a press release went out announcing the Media Lab's new Center for Future Storytelling. Just like that, my various plans and schemes for possible directions for my Ph.D research were completely upended, like that scene in Ghostbusters: "The flowers are still standing!" There's also a write-up in the New York Times under the title "Saving the Story (the Film Version)", but there's very little additional content about the actual 'labette' than in the original press release. Believe me, I'm watching this with both eyes. The best thing about this possibility to my mind so far is that it won't officially launch until 2010, which gives me a year to get certain other massive projects done or well underway, but, as always, we'll see what happens...

Plus, now USC has a very definite allure for obvious reasons! So now I have multiple programs that could provide a great home for my Ph.D research whereas before this last year I was still wandering in the desert. The Media Lab, USC, Ohio State, Georgia Tech, Queensland, Madison... Dang!

So, yes. Wild, crazy times – and the week's just started. Heaven only knows what will come of the Futures of Entertainment 3 Conference coming up this weekend, aside from getting to see some friends absent too long... But I do realize that this means I have to get some serious writing stockpiled before Friday morning!

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