The Quest Blog


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03/31/2010: Chapter 53 up

Finally! Took a little while to get it done completely, but here we go.

Chapter 53: Away


03/30/2010: Chapter 53 coming

Okay, I've been having an unusual amount of homework in the past couple of weeks and a ton of other stuff to do (okay, so many of them involved cuddling with Shadey, but that's not the point), but the chapter actually is pretty close to being done. I've still got an assignment to finish tonight, but then it's Easter break for me, so I'm hoping to finish it sometime tomorrow. Stay tuned.

03/15/2010: Chapter 52 up

Chapter 52: The League Finals is up. Enjoy.

Thanks go to opaltiger for beta-reading it. As I've been saying, chapter 53 is likely to be quick, so expect it soon.

03/15/2010: Almost Done

Looks like it's going to be a bit shorter than I thought last time; I was extrapolating from the length of the battle when it was halfway done Pokémonwise, but the latter half turned out a bit shorter than the first, so now I'm really almost done with the chapter. Hopefully I can get it up later today or this evening.

(Incidentally, the Quest for the Legends Word document is now 600 pages long.)

EDIT: Chapter finished. I think. I'm sort of iffy on whether or not to include one more scene after what I'm currently calling the end of the chapter. We'll see after I take a nap and proofread.

03/12/2010: Status Update

I always find it sort of unsettling when I reread something I wrote that seemed awful at the time but see nothing wrong with it anymore. I always get this paranoid feeling that my original assessment was during a rare moment of clarity about my own lack of writing ability and normally I'm just blind to it.

At any rate, I'm over the non-writing-mood, apparently everything I wrote during it wasn't as bad as I thought it was (maybe), and my current estimate places the final length of the chapter at something like twenty-two or twenty-three pages. So yeah.

03/08/2010: Annoyance

I'm not in a writing mood. I'm pressing on to finish the chapter anyway, but everything I write feels horribly worded and just wrong. Hopefully that can be fixed with proofreading.

At least chapter 53 will hopefully be relatively quick.

02/25/2010: More Progress

Chapter 52 is still going. Not particularly fast, but not slow either. Not sure if I'll make it before the end of February (I only just now realized there are only 28 days in February), but definitely not that far into March.

And then it's just chapter 53! Which I've been looking forward to for a very, very long time.

02/17/2010: Oh, dear.

Damn it, this conversation just won't end and they keep talking about more and more stuff I never meant for them to talk about anywhere near now. <_< Stop trying to be the main focus of the chapter, conversation! There's supposed to be a battle here!

02/15/2010: Stuff

Every time I reread One-Shot A, I like it more. No particular point to this; just an observation.

Still writing chapter 52. It's gotten itself into a bit of a knot because this conversation is going places I never meant for it to go (though on the plus side, it's setting up some stuff that I'd been worrying would just come off as an asspull later), but it'll sort itself out. And then I can hopefully get to the main battle, which should be reasonably straightforward to write.

Chapter 53 will be fun.

02/08/2010: Fifty-Two

Man, there's a lot of stuff going on in this chapter. Why is there always more stuff going on than I think? This could end up as one of the longest chapters of the fic so far.

At least it's getting itself written pretty quickly. Personally, I'm hoping to have it done before the end of the month.

The Quest for the Legends chapter 52: featuring two battles, media, May, Tyranitar, and Chaletwo talking about souls. Tune in sometime before February is up!

02/04/2010: Thoughts

Welcome to the Quest Blog. Today, we ponder the question, "Should some future Quest for the Legends rewrite strive to actually get to the point reasonably soon instead of it taking until chapter 25 to introduce the actual plot?"

Which is a better question than you'd think. Obviously, it makes little sense to write a story such that the plot doesn't start until somewhere in the middle; I'm all too aware of that. Where the matter gets hairy is, given a story that for some reason does only properly start somewhere in the middle for some reason, could it necessarily be improved by cutting off what comes before that?

Thing is, sure, I could write the story of Mark Greenlet, a young boy in the middle of his badge journey who is killed and involved in a plot to save the world by capturing all the legendary Pokémon. But by cutting off everything before Chaletwo's arrival at the Pokémon festival, while the main plot wouldn't be harmed, everything else would be, fatally so.

The badge journey? Well, it would be mighty lame to start a story with the protagonist being recruited on an epic mission, only to then have him decide to first continue this routine badge journey that's been happening off-screen and we have no reason to give a damn about. That would pretty much have to be cut in its entirety. But what about May? Would she honestly come with Mark if that meant abandoning her attempt at the Ouen League? Eh, I might be able to make her somehow, but she would still inevitably lose most of her character development. But who cares about that, right? It's not like it's relevant to the plot.

Scyther? To make him join Mark, something like the Mew Hunter chapter is needed, and that wouldn't happen unless the Mew Hunter saw Mark release Mew, which in turn can't happen unless Mark did release Mew, which he obviously can't do at any point after he is recruited on his legendary quest. Thus, it would pretty much necessarily happen before the start of the story. But honestly, how lame is that? "Oh, by the way, the main character actually obtained Mew off-screen, and released it, and was kidnapped and threatened by this Scyther, but we're just going to be telling you about it while he goes around battling legendary Pokémon"? There is a limit to how interesting the events that happen off-screen in a story can be before it just gets ridiculous. I'd end up having to introduce gratuitous flashbacks to stuff that's too interesting to leave out altogether but too unimportant to the main plot to actually happen chronologically in the story, and it would be horribly awkward. That or, of course, I just cut Scyther out altogether or change his backstory to something simpler. He's irrelevant to the plot anyway; who needs him?

I could go on. In general, the rule is that either the first chapters of that fic would have to be stuffed with "Also by the way Gyarados has been able to use this move Dragon Beam the whole time, and Mark's really been wondering about that, and also on his badge journey this happened, and that also happened because of this," or all sorts of elements and characters that don't directly have to do with the main plot would have to be cut out altogether. Either it would feel very, very obviously like being dumped into the middle of a much longer story (and how much would that honestly help?), or, more sensibly, it would just strip out all the stuff that doesn't directly matter to the main plot in order to get to the point.

And sure, I could make that story. But it would not be this fic, and I really would have absolutely no interest in writing it. After all, since when am I writing this because I want to make Mark Greenlet battle a bunch of legendaries? It would be some silly battlefest fic with an interesting ending but not much more, and I don't even like writing battles. No thanks.

Obviously I am not saying that the late introduction of the main plot isn't problematic for this fic anyway, or that anyone ever ought to write a fic the way I did. I am simply saying that, given I'm going to be writing this fic to begin with, it really wouldn't help to try to get to the point. This fic wouldn't work if I just got to the point. If I'm going to write something with a more sensibly structured plot, I'll write some other fic, but I think this one will just have to remain this way. And sure, that makes it awkward and odd and too long, but it's not as if I'm still writing this because it's perfect. I'm writing it because I love it, and I couldn't possibly continue love it the same way if it were cut down to get to the point.

I've been writing a bit more of chapter 52, by the way. Yay.

01/23/2010: Dragon styles up

So. If you haven't noticed, the Thunderyu, Volcaryu and Polaryu styles I've been talking about for ages are up. If you desperately want to continue using the Chalenor and Chaletwo styles, however, they still work if your cookie is set to one of them, and you can set it by clicking the links I just gave you.

Polaryu style took a while to get made since I got lazy with making the Polaryu sprite trace that now decorates the Polaryu style, and once I started making it, it was quite a challenge, mostly because I had to shade each of the crystals individually and I wasn't really sure exactly how to go about shading them to begin with, though I ended up doing something that I think came out pretty well. It's my favorite style now, anyhow.

Comments on the styles are of course always welcome.

01/13/2010: Chapter 51 up

Chapter 51: Fake-Out is here.

It's… a bit of an odd chapter. You'll see. Twelve pages. Hope you enjoy it.

I will update a couple of character rambles in light of what has happened here when I get around to it.

EDIT: Updated the bits about Spirit and Gyarados in the bios for May's and Mark's Pokémon, respectively.

01/12/2010: Writing, for a change

Surprise! I have actually been doing some writing. :o As in, I've written a page of chapter 51 since last time and don't plan on stopping.

The remaining character bios are coming too, but I thought it would be nice to give you a heads up that I haven't completely forgotten about actually writing the fic.

EDIT: Whoa, this chapter is turning out one hell of a lot better than I thought it would.

01/10/2010: Scyther Bios

The Scyther spin-off bios for Razor, Stormblade and Shadowdart are up. I had way too much fun with Shadowdart's, if you couldn't tell. There would be more in it, but since that concerns the interplay between Shadowdart and Stalker, that's going in her bio.

01/08/2010: More Bios

Since I had three Internetless days to work on stuff like the character bios in peace, I now have all of the ILCOE bios (but not the Scyther spin-off ones) up except Molzapart's, which is also nearly done.

Featuring, among other things: the horribly tragic story of Sparky's life, the Mew Hunter's inability to form bonds normally, the name of Victor's sixth Pokémon, and Chaletwo's daddy issues.

01/04/2010: Hee.

I'm reading over the Good Battle Style again and came across this paragraph at the end of the otherwise terribly misguided chapter twelve:

At first, it was just the nightmare he’d been expecting, more reliving the day, more feeling death, more Fangcats and Scythers and more blood, but after that, he saw two yellow eyes, felt horrible pain, and then he woke up, all sweaty. His pokémon were all still asleep. Then he fell asleep again. He had another such dream, but then he was with Mew in front of him, and threw a pokéball. Mew was absorbed into the ball, and he saw himself taking the ball, but he had no face. Then a roar found its way through the dream and Mark woke up to see Scyther awake. It apparently had a nightmare, too. Scyther had seen itself killing Mark, Fangcat, the feeling of the fang through its body, and then it had seen itself attacking various pokémon, but Mark wasn’t there. The other pokémon didn’t have a trainer either. They both went back to sleep, had more nightmares that were all something like that, and kept waking each other. It was a terrible night.

And the reason this is noteworthy is of course that these dreams are all stuffed with deliberate foreshadowing for stuff that I'd already thought up at that point, which is really fun for me to realize again.

First, Mark sees blinding yellow eyes and feels horrible pain. These are of course Chaletwo's eyes, and this directly foreshadows Mark's eventual death. This dream made it into the ILCOE.

Then, Mark sees himself capturing Mew in a Pokéball, but he has no face. This dream is in the ILCOE too, and refers of course to Mark going around trying to capture legendary Pokémon after his supposed "death".

And finally, interestingly, Scyther dreams about fighting Pokémon without a trainer - the Pokémon Frenzy Tournament, that is. And this bit really surprised me, because I didn't make up the Scyther/Charmeleon subplot until I was writing this very chapter, and I was pretty sure I only made up the Pokémon Frenzy Tournament as an excuse to have Scyther and Charmeleon resolve their conflict. Finding out I had it planned here is interesting.

Nope, no other point to this. Just musing about the past.

01/02/2010: The Original

I have just been reading through the original version on a whim. It is hilarious.

Mark makes the most ridiculously inane comments in between reading about all the legendaries in the book; the book itself is written like a section on Butterfree's Pokémon Site; the battles are of course awful as ever; Mark is all thinking about teams and moves and catching both Suicune and the mysterious disappearing Gyarados; and then once he gets to Rick's gym, you have gems like these:

“It’s cloned, you fool,” said the trainer.
Then, a very funny pursuit began.
Gyarados started to laugh, that is, to roar wildly between catching his breath. The other trainer also laughed, fell to the floor and rolled around of laughter. He reminded Mark strongly of Sandshrew.
“Char! Mele! On!” Entei fainted.
“The Suicune… it’s cloned from the one that cleans the lake! It must know Gyarados!” Mark whispered. “Suicune isn’t going to battle anymore!”
“Cune,” Suicune said weakly and then fell to the floor.
“What do you want now, kid?” (If you didn’t guess, Mewtwo said that.)
“Whaddayawant?” said Mewtwotwo.
“I’m going to buy… uh, one Thunderstone, one Fire blast TM, one Surf HM, one Shadow ball TM and one Earthquake TM,” he said to the woman at the counter. She got it all from shelfs and said: “It’s 10700, but as you’re a young trainer and you’re buying 5 items, you can get it for 96700.”
(The best thing about this one, if you didn't actually do the math, is that the special price the woman is offering him is actually more than nine times higher than the original price.)
Mark thought of how the Mewtwo had teleported away. And the trainer had said “the last one also did”. How many Mewtwos could be lurking around, waiting to take over the world? Mark tried not to think about it and went through.

This is great. I'm going to go read the Good Battle Style now.

Also, by the way, I've made a sort of new year's resolution to try to write at least 100 pages of The Quest for the Legends in 2010. Which is exactly the same resolution as I made in 2009 and didn't manage to fulfill, but I think the reason is just that I've been writing very battle-heavy chapters this year and those have always taken me a while; I'm hoping that in 2010 I'll be able to write a bit quicker, since there are fewer huge battles.

EDIT: The Good Battle Style has a "large ironic door". Oh, my wonderfully poor grasp of English.

01/01/2010: Taylor's Bio Up

Taylor Lancaster's ILCOE bio

I'll just be adding them as I write them.

12/31/2009: ILCOE Bios Up

New Character Bios page

The listed but non-linked characters are planned to have bios, though they haven't been made yet. If you think some more characters should have bios, just say so.

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