NSFW: Dogs and Goddesses Plotting Chat for McDaniel

Sep232012

Hello, Argh. I’ve been on the road forever so I owe you a post, and the McDaniel students asked about how Krissie and Lani and I collaborated on Dogs and Goddesses so I’m posting a piece of a chat transcript here (with digressions edited out) that shows how we worked out the climax of the book while we were writing it. It’s NSFW, so if you’re squeamish do not keep reading.

And all of Argh Nation keeps reading.

Lani D. Okay – so climax. End of Act Three – the fire – Abby’s POV. Act Four starts – rising from the ashes, right? So they’re gonna be drinking the punch in that, right? Is that the moment Abby figures the punch out? After the fire?

Krissie O. Yes. Toasting each other. Originally I had her figure it out in the middle of the night while she was having sex with Christopher. Or around that time.

Lani D. Because here’s the thing – I’d like that punch to give them something they didn’t have before. “I feel kinda invincible.”* Would that work for you guys?

Krissie O. Oh, yes!!!!

Lani D. But it’s the first time the three of them have it, right?

Krissie O. Yup.

Lani D. Okay – so they drink the punch, they have their invincible moment, and they decide they need to kick some ass. Now – question Jenny – when does Sam run off to die? Is it before the fire? After the fire?

Jenny C. No, after. The fire is what makes him leave. He realizes that Kami’s going to take them one way or another, and he has to get rid of her before she hurts them, so he goes to tell her that they’re going back to Mesopotamia and she can sacrifice him there.

Lani D. Okay – so, will this work – if they drink the punch, get kinda invincible, and then Sam goes off to die. That needs to be in Shar’s POV – does Shar have an after-the-fire scene?

Jenny C. Not so far but she can have.

Krissie - I think Shar has to have the POV where Sam goes off to die, don’t you?

Jenny C. I’m open.

Krissie O. It makes sense — the scene for the POV of the person who has the most to lose.

Lani D. So maybe these can be shorter scenes – they rise from the fire (Abby) Sam goes off to die (Shar) They plan to kick some goddess ass (Daisy). Will that work?

Jenny C. Man, you just want to see her bleed to love him.**

Lani D. Oh, I’m sorry. Did you not get the memo? We’re writing ROMANCE.

Jenny C. LOL

Lani D. I’ll give you a minute to look it up on Wikipedia.

Jenny C. I was writing a dog story. Now if MILTON was going off to die. That would be entirely different.

Lani D. ROFL

Jenny C. Besides Sam’s not awestruck during sex so really, no loss.

Krissie O. Oh, I had a thought about Sam and sex. I don’t remember ever getting the sense that he really really wanted her. He was just bumbling around, fucking everything. I never got the sense that he would really do anything for her. Is there anything in an earlier scene that shows him really wanting her? Because I think we need that for the scene to have power.

Jenny C. Well, you know, women. Dime a dozen.

Krissie O. We know Shar’s been thinking about it.

Jenny C. I had notes on stuff. But I kind of ended up moving story.

Krissie O. But I don’t know that we get a sense of Sam really needing it from her.

Jenny C. Sigh. Second act rewrite.

Krissie O. Just a thought while it was zipping through my SCB.

Jenny C. I did a thing where they danced to “One Night,” but there was no place for it.

Lani D. I think there are hints with how he loved Sharrat. But yes, that needs to be in there.

Krissie O. Yup. But that was it.

Jenny C. No, you’re right.

Lani D. And just a little AMAZEMENT. That’s all I ask.

Jenny C. “My GOD, she has a VAGINA! And I’m IN IT.”

Krissie O. No, she has a glittery hooha.

Jenny C. And the blue glitter is AWESOME.

Krissie O. lapis blue

Lani D. heh heh heh

Krissie O. or do I mean labia blue?

Lani D. Oh dear

Krissie O. stop that!

Jenny C. Penicillin clears that right up. So, glitter, awestruck, loves her more than Milton. Got it.

Lani D. Lol. She’s on it.

Jenny C. Jamie had any yet?

Lani D. Jamie will get some, don’t you worry. Nice deflection, by the way, Crusie.

Jenny C. ON THE PAGE?

Lani D. YES ON THE PAGE. Jesus.

Jenny C. None of this “and later they had great sex” stuff.

Lani D. You give me amazement, I’ll get Jamie laid. Deal?

Jenny C. I want to see the AWE IN HIS EYES.

Lani D. YOU WILL.

Jenny C. LOL.

Lani D. Hey, babe, you had dick, but I had AWE.

Jenny C. Awe without dick is meaningless.

Lani D. Can I quote you on that?

Jenny C. Absolutely. Just spell my name right.

Lani D. OOOH on the header at the site. “Jennie Cruise says…”

Jenny C. I SAID SPELL MY NAME RIGHT. Jesus.

Lani D. Dick and awe? Kinda like shock and awe only effective.

Krissie O. A new slogan.

Jenny C. Dick and Awe. The old vaudeville team.

Lani D. SERIOUS. WORKING. PROFESSIONAL. Oh, hell.

Jenny C. Okay, I think the fourth act was a little short without the extra scenes so I think it’s good.

Lani D. So that’ll work? Then we storm the castle.

Jenny C. Works for me.

Lani D. Abby gets us there, starts the chant.

Jenny C. Although I have to write that goddamn emotion again. You know, I’m just not GOOD at that.

Lani D. Daisy takes it, they get knocked on their asses, Kami stabs Sam . . .takes it from there when the Three regroup – Mina tries to kill Shar – Kami saves Shar, gets banished for her trouble. And then, Shar’s POV when they raise Sam. Heh heh heh.

[Major Buffy Digression)

Lani D. You know, it just occurred to me that I don’t think we’re gonna work tonight.

Jenny C. I have to write that freaking drunk scene since I got NOTHING done today.

Lani D. Well, the mood we’re in now works great for the drunk scene.

Krissie O. I wrote two lousy pages of my love scene. But I intend to persevere.

Jenny C. It happens after a FUNERAL. I gotta get them from “My GOD she’s dead,” to “She said, ‘Awe’ heh heh heh.”

Lani D. No, it doesn’t happen after the funeral. It happens after they witness a traumatic death.

Jenny C. Oh, right, that’s BETTER.

Krissie O. Yeah, but Daisy doesn’t care, remember?

Jenny C. “MY GOD SHE DIED, pass the punch.”

Krissie O. Not a tear was shed.

Lani D. Oh, hell.

Jenny C. Heartless bitch.

Lani D. “I never liked that tramp…”

Jenny C. There’s an idea. Let’s kill Karen. None of us liked her.

Lani D. Yes! One more to the body count…

Jenny C. We have a body count of one. And it doesn’t really count because it’s a human being, not a dog.

Krissie O. Karen? I’ve forgotten her. Which means she’s expendible.

Lani D. Right.

Jenny C. Now if we killed a DOG . . .

Krissie O. Body count of two. Sam dies.

Lani D. Tallie needs company. It’s no fun being dead by yourself.

Jenny C. Yeah, Sam and Tallie in the afterlife. Sam would rise just to get away from her.

Krissie O. He’d fuck her. You know he would. He’s equal opportunity. Since he’s not awed by Shar.

Jenny C. OH FOR THE LOVE OF GOD . . .

And it all went downhill from there.

But yes, that’s how we collaborated.

*Quote from Big Trouble in Little China
** Fleetwood Mac reference

Filed in Writing

26 Comments to 'NSFW: Dogs and Goddesses Plotting Chat for McDaniel'

On September 23, 2012 at 2:39 pm JulieB said...

Of course we keep reading. . .

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On September 23, 2012 at 3:09 pm RainyWeather said...

Thanks. Fascinating and funny (always a nice combination). Oh, and thanks for noting and explaining to quotes; I would have missed them completely.

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On September 23, 2012 at 4:28 pm Skye said...

If we didn’t keep reading, we’d never get to the good stuff. And how on earth do you actually get to these scenes with all the digressions and interruptions? I am in AWE ….

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On September 23, 2012 at 4:35 pm Sure Thing said...

@Skye – you got the awe and dick was just referenced!

Fave quote “Penicillin clears that right up.”

For me there is someone that if they died soon, I’d be all “Champagne, please?” I’ll gain nothing except knowing that the *fourth-worst person in the world is dead. – Morning Glory reference :-D

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On September 23, 2012 at 5:08 pm Terrie said...

Hilarious! But as someone who is always up for a Buffy digression, I felt a real twinge of longing . . .

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On September 24, 2012 at 4:10 am Katie said...

Yeah, when I saw that I thought “Ooohhh, Buffy!” Never say no to ANY discussion of Buffy. Those are all my favorite parts of StoryWonk :)

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On September 23, 2012 at 6:37 pm robena grant said...

I enjoyed this. I love looking at your process. And you do get a lot accomplished in those brainstorming chats. Also, speaking of Dick and Awe (they really are a coupla characters, aren’t they?) I laughed along with Biden when his wife introduced him recently and made a dick joke. There’s a youtube video of it, don’t have the link. sorry. : (

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On September 25, 2012 at 4:14 pm PG said...

Will we ever be able to quote Dr. Jill Biden again without a “That’s what SHE said!”?
http://www.buzzfeed.com/dorsey/jill-biden-inadvertently-makes-a-penis-joke

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On September 23, 2012 at 6:37 pm Muria said...

All of Argh Nation continues reading after checking to make sure the elementary school kids aren’t hanging around, but lament that the digressions were edited out.

From what I’ve been able to discern, some of the funniest bits tend to be edited out. :(

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On September 23, 2012 at 7:06 pm Jenny said...

I edited out the really NSFW parts. This is supposed to be a TEACHING post.

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On September 23, 2012 at 8:45 pm Mary Stella said...

Hey, Professor Crusie, speaking as one of your students, don’t edit them out on my account. ;-)

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On September 23, 2012 at 9:01 pm Jenny said...

I didn’t want you to lose all respect for me. And that would have done it, too.

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On September 24, 2012 at 7:57 pm Micki said...

Well, we’ve got a lot on our plates, but there’s always room for DESSERT! LOL!

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On September 24, 2012 at 10:04 pm Mary Stella said...

I didn’t want you to lose all respect for me. And that would have done it too.

Never happen.

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On September 23, 2012 at 7:44 pm Louise said...

Love the free falling brain storming. I laughed and so feel better starting yet another day where no writing will be done until the fog has lifted from the lurgy that lingers. :-)

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On September 23, 2012 at 8:37 pm Kelly S said...

Thank you for sharing! Time spent laughing is always well spent. :)

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On September 24, 2012 at 3:58 am lily malone said...

This is a first-time post and I know it sucks that it’s the ‘absence’ of your Argh posts that gets my fingers to keyboard… but I’ve so missed reading your news! I love your website, love all these writing conversation posts and the 12 Days of Liz (who I miss terribly already) was brilliant for a newbie writer such as me.
p.s. I don’t even know what NSFW means – that’s how green around the gills I am – and I soldiered in regardless boots and all.

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On September 24, 2012 at 10:31 am Egads said...

NSFW = Not Safe For Work

I laughed out loud when I read And all of Argh Nation keeps reading.

You know we love the writing discussion, but it’s the Dick and Awe that keeps bringing us back.

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On September 24, 2012 at 12:38 pm Jane Birdsell said...

Thanks for the translation. I just assumed it was American, which I’m not completely fluent in.

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On September 25, 2012 at 6:24 am JaneB said...

It wasn’t a great comment: but my finger slipped and the autofill spelled my name out, so now I’m a stranger. Sorry!

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On September 24, 2012 at 1:10 pm Robin S. said...

Like we’re not gonna keep reading. And what were supposed to be the squeamish bits? Or am I just that far gone?

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On September 24, 2012 at 1:11 pm Kieran said...

Yes, who would turn away?!?

Jenny, you mentioned a long time ago some program you three used to keep tabs on the collaboration process–do you remember what that was? I’ve been Googling but nothing rings a bell. I could swear it had a name with the word FIRE in it, but maybe not. Thanks!

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On September 25, 2012 at 8:12 pm Jenny said...

Campfire from 37 Signals.

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On September 24, 2012 at 8:06 pm Micki said...

Kieran, I think they used “Campfire” as a group chat . . . not sure if the program (website?) has an archive function (well, it must, or we wouldn’t have this learning experience, LOL).

For those of you playing at home with the actual book, it’s interesting to see how it all worked out. Abby made the potion after The Best Make-up Sex, but right before the fire. (pg 350 in my book)

Shar and Sam have a brilliant “he loves me!” scene right before the fire (p. 343 to 345).

Daisy and Noah actually have a break-up before the fire and rescue scene (p. 338-ish), but love and battle will bring them together (around p. 381). Oh, and Noah gets a name change — he used to be Jamie. It’s rather interesting that Daisy and Noah are the only ones going into the battle not sure of each other’s backs.

OK, so this is what you do when you collaborate. What do you do when you are all by yourself? Various girls in the basement slug it out just like this?

(-: I should ask this in class . . . . Thanks for the post! It’s really enlightening.

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On September 25, 2012 at 2:48 am CrankyOtter said...

Favorite bit

Lani D. Oh, I’m sorry. Did you not get the memo? We’re writing ROMANCE.
Jenny C. LOL
Lani D. I’ll give you a minute to look it up on Wikipedia.

Whole thing is fun and you each bring different strengths to the process. And Duh, of course we all kept reading.

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On September 26, 2012 at 7:29 am Carol-Ann said...

Thanks for the laugh, and yes I’m reading at work, but the girls in the office are used to seeing me laugh for no reason at lunchtime…

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