Dragon Ball FighterZ

Hello to all of you. I’m back for yet another of my weekly blog posts.

This previous week I was gifted a game. As I am, and likely always shall be, a fan of the Dragon Ball series, I was quite happy to receive Dragon Ball FighterZ. So far I am an adequate fighter, though I’m no where near in understanding all of the controls. Mostly, as usual, I’m a button masher. This makes me formidable to those who like myself lack a complete understanding of all the controls. However, I fear I soon will fall behind those I fight. For whatever reason I’ve yet to remember any of the specials, though I’ve practiced them. Perhaps I should focus on one character and learn them completely if I hope to remain a challenge to others.

I’ve had a number of matches with the co-author, and I win the majority of times. However, I can tell they are getting better while I remain the same. I’ve even caught them watching YouTube video’s about the game, so I know they are going to be better the next time we fight. We even did a mini tournament and added some CPU controlled opponents, and they wound up defeating us rather easily. I need to practice!

The game itself is a triumph of 3D animation made to look like the regular 2D of the show. While it’s not exact, it’s as close as I’ve ever seen a game get, especially in the Dragon Ball catalog of games. Not that I’ve played every iteration, but I have at least gotten to rent some in the past, and have enjoyed them for what they were. This one to me seems more entertaining, at least so far as the fighting goes.

I’ve played a little bit of the story mode, and I can’t say I’m a huge fan of it yet. That may be due to my own moods, as I just want to jump into the fights. I could care less about the story itself, though probably I should. It seems interesting enough, and the cut-scenes are well done. But apparently I just want to do battle.

Another great thing about this game is the voice acting. I’ve mostly watched the Dragon Ball franchise in Japanese, and it’s wonderful to hear those voices while I fight. I can’t speak on the English cast, as the current incarnation from Funimation is not the one I grew to love. I was and always will be a fan of the English cast from the Ocean’s Dub. That and I haven’t turned on the English voice-over. If that’s even a possibility. I haven’t checked, I just assume it’s there somewhere.

All in all it’s an enjoyable fighter game. A great intuitive list of skills, though I do have issues with the specials. But even without those it still flows nicely from attack to attack, and combos are easy to come by. With a little more practice I think I’ll get the hang of it. And luckily the game has a practice room you can work on your skills without worrying about being attacked. It also offers a list of specials and how to pull them off for whatever character you are playing as. I think I’ll have to spend a bit more time there.

Besides playing this game, I’ve once again come to the end of the book. I can’t reiterate how much help it is to have the computer read back what we’ve written, as I’ve caught quite a number of little errors that may have gone unnoticed had I just been reading it back myself. Thank goodness for technology.

And with that, I shall disappear back into my own world, and continue to try to make this book the best thing I’ve ever written. Have a great week.

What I’ve published

Walk On

Walk On Cover

click here for a link to the book

Outsider Trilogy

Outsiders-Book-Cover-RGB-web-safe

Click here for a link to the book

Poetry

poems_front2

Link to my author page on Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/Steven-Oaks/e/B00MEGSEZ6

Link to the Deathship book in the CreateSpace store – https://www.createspace.com/5023771

Or you can help me out on Patreon. Again, thank you. https://www.patreon.com/StevenOaks

Update: Currently on chapter 36 out of 36

Steven Oaks

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Rambling about Writing and Editing

Howdy folks. I’m back.

Not much really to talk about here. The book is still being worked on, and the co-author has written a bit more. I went through the changes, and didn’t find anything really to fix, so there’s that.

Hrm. I have a problem. I don’t feel like I have much to say here on the blog. I suppose I could talk about the books I’ve read or am reading, or even the random shows I am watching, but is that important? That’s the thing, nothing I’m doing seems important enough to talk about. I’m proud that I’m reading so much, as I’ve mentioned before, it is said that you have to read to write. And the things I watch also influence the way I write, but is it important that I talk about that?

You, theoretical person who reads this blog to learn about my writing process, does it matter what media I’m consuming? You certainly have your own tastes, and those will be your influences. But do mine matter to you? Probably not, unless your preferences align with my own and you are on the hunt for entertainment that I like.

Perhaps I’m feeling this way because it’s been nearly a year since the editing(finalizing the draft) has been going on. It’s an extremely important process, and can mean the difference between a good idea that is lost in poor writing, and a good idea that is actually entertaining to read. However it’s extremely different from writing.

Making that first draft, that creative process, is unlike most anything else. It’s not about being correct, or even making sense, that comes later. It’s about looking at all the crazy ideas you have, like unshaped clay, and making a rough shape out of them. Getting all the right pieces together, even if they are in the wrong place, and just trying to tell a story with those ideas.

Editing is about putting all those ideas in the right place. It’s about smoothing out those rough edges, and correcting anything you’ve not shaped correctly. Chiseling away at the bloated mass that you’ve thrown down, until the story is the only thing left, not those random words you may have put down just to keep your word count going for the day. I’ve a bad habit of that, and find excess words in the most random places. This is why I will always say write way beyond what you want your final word count to be, you’ll be pulling out more words than you realize.

Remember, everything you write will have to serve the narrative. It just doesn’t have to be for the story itself, and can be about character development or world building, but there are things that don’t belong. You’ll find those when you edit though, so don’t worry too much about them at first. Let the words flow, and when you put enough together you’ll be able to make something out of it later, but you might find only a short story where you were trying to write a novel if you don’t rein it in a little.

One secret of editing your story is to look at each scene separately. If you were to take it out, would it change the story you’re trying to tell? If not, then cut it. If a cut changes your character in a way you don’t like, then you might want to keep it. You have to make motivations clear. Make sure the audience understands who your characters are. So don’t make cuts that take away from that, but be sure the scene shows that, and has some influence on the story as well. Otherwise you fall into non sequiturs.

Apparently that’s what I wanted to talk about this week. Hopefully it’s helpful in a way, and/or gives you something to think about. I hope you have an enjoyable week.

What I’ve published

Walk On

Walk On Cover

click here for a link to the book

Outsider Trilogy

Outsiders-Book-Cover-RGB-web-safe

Click here for a link to the book

Poetry

poems_front2

Link to my author page on Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/Steven-Oaks/e/B00MEGSEZ6

Link to the Deathship book in the CreateSpace store – https://www.createspace.com/5023771

Or you can help me out on Patreon. Again, thank you. https://www.patreon.com/StevenOaks

Update: Currently on chapter 32 out of 36

Steven Oaks

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Finding Entertainment

Hello all. Here I am again.

Another week has passed, and boy am I tired. I had another weekend of day-shifts, and it sure does take it out of me. Long hours in a time where I see the sun after I usually only ever see the moon certainly doesn’t help my sleep schedule. Honestly it wasn’t so bad, just boring. But again boredom is way better than certain types of excitement, so I’m not going to complain too much.

Anyway, what have I been up to besides working ‘strange’ shifts? Well I finished up watching the episodes of Fairy Tail on Netflix. Decent shonen show, I’ll probably continue it on Crunchyroll here shortly. Also the co-author recommended the animated Castlevania on Netflix, and I watched several episodes last night/this morning while I tried to reset my schedule. I think I like it. I like the writing so far, though I will say some of the delivery doesn’t sound quite right to my ears. Then again I’m generally used to listen to Japanese when I watch something animated, so perhaps it’s just that.

Other than that I’ve been reading, of course. Since I’m a glutton when it comes to the written word, I’m starting to worry that I’m not going to find something enjoyable to read again. Not that I’ve gotten quite there yet as there is a vast ocean of books to read in the Prime Reading category, so I should be able to find something to please the palate. But since my pleasure lies in the sci-fi/fantasy category, and as huge as their collection is, I’m still having difficulty deciding what next I should read. I can’t rely on going through all the books from authors I’ve already enjoyed, as much of those you do have to pay for. So I’m hunting and clicking around much of the time trying to locate a hidden gem. I’ve found quite a few, though I’ve also dropped a number of books that just didn’t do it for me for one reason or another. I just wish there was an easier way to find good books on Amazon. Certainly they have their ratings to go by, but while others may have enjoyed something, it doesn’t necessarily mean I will. As my Goodreads list grows I wish it did a better job at recommending. Oh well, I suppose I’ll just have to keep hunting on my own with little help from algorithms they implement.

We’re still editing, so there’s that as well. It’s going much smoother for me this time around, and I’m not finding too much to change, as I’ve said before. The co-author keeps adding things as well, so I’ll be checking those changes out soon. But mostly I’ve just been re-wording things, and trying to decide if I should add anything, or if there is anything that should be removed. Right now, after re-reading this book around five times, I think it doesn’t need much changing. Of course the co-author could come to different conclusions, but luckily we generally agree on such things.

And with that I shall leave you to it. Have a great week, and I’ll keep working on the book.

What I’ve published

Walk On

Walk On Cover

click here for a link to the book

Outsider Trilogy

Outsiders-Book-Cover-RGB-web-safe

Click here for a link to the book

Poetry

poems_front2

Link to my author page on Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/Steven-Oaks/e/B00MEGSEZ6

Link to the Deathship book in the CreateSpace store – https://www.createspace.com/5023771

Or you can help me out on Patreon. Again, thank you. https://www.patreon.com/StevenOaks

Update: Currently on chapter 28 out of 36

Steven Oaks

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Still editing, still enjoying

Howdy folks. I’m back.

So, what have I been up to? Well I’ve been editing of course, though I’m mostly going over well trodden “edited” words at this point. There’s very little that I find that needs fixing, and mostly it’s just me re-wording things so they seem more pleasing to my tastes. Only rarely am I finding anything that needs any work, though amusingly enough mostly it’s the addition of ‘the’ before names. I suppose when the co-author and myself are writing we are used to using a descriptor as apposed to a name so we’ve been putting ‘the’ there, but looking back they are easily spotted and discarded. But it does make editing amusing when you here someone referred to as “The” so and so. So much import, for no reason. Heh.

I still can’t express how helpful it is to have an audio version of the book to listen back to while editing. The human eye will not catch any errors, especially after re-reading when editing so often, as our brains will re-word everything into what was meant as apposed to what is there. I wish I had used this method for the last several books, as I assume I’ve missed things I shouldn’t have. But here we are, and I get better each time I write. Perhaps one day I’ll look back in embarrassment at what I’ve already published because of such errors. But the truth is I’m proud that I was able to write at all, and without those first books I’d not be who I am today.

Speaking of this book, the co-author continues to edit. They keep adding to it, and I keep going back to the section they’ve worked on. It’s interesting to see what they change, though mostly it’s to add a bit more characterization. They are very good at world building, and in a subtle way that I still struggle with from time to time. An example would be for me, I’ll write a scene, focused mostly on words, but they’ll put in the background, and focus on what they characters are physically doing. I guess I’m an oddball, as while I read another writers book I almost entirely focus on what characters are saying, and only as necessary am I paying attention to what they are doing. So much so I find myself going back through a paragraph to understand what I’ve just read because I’ve missed something. This is something I’ve been aware of for a long time, and I’d like to think I’ve gotten better, but it still happens from time to time. But since I read so fast it hasn’t made a huge difference in my enjoyment, so I’ve probably haven’t tried hard enough to fix this.

Another thing I find so fascinating about this book, is that I find it difficult in recognizing who wrote what. Sure, there are a few things that stick out, and I know for sure there is an entire chapter that was written by the co-author, though I think I put in a few things there myself. It’s a great chapter by the way, but we blend together so perfectly we entwine our words, it’s nearly impossible to tell who wrote what. Together we are making a really good story. At least in my opinion. I can’t wait to have it published so you all can enjoy it.

And with that, I think I’ll leave you for now. I hope you all have a great week.

What I’ve published

Walk On

Walk On Cover

click here for a link to the book

Outsider Trilogy

Outsiders-Book-Cover-RGB-web-safe

Click here for a link to the book

Poetry

poems_front2

Link to my author page on Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/Steven-Oaks/e/B00MEGSEZ6

Link to the Deathship book in the CreateSpace store – https://www.createspace.com/5023771

Or you can help me out on Patreon. Again, thank you. https://www.patreon.com/StevenOaks

Update: Currently on chapter 23 out of 36

Steven Oaks

Follow me on the things below.

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