Discover more from the vampire shift
11. Updates and loves
What I'm doing and what I'm really into at the moment
Hi friends. Is that a cult-leader-sounding salutation? Whatever.
It’s been a while! My partner and I have just returned from our honeymoon. Writing this update is the latest in a series of attempts to claw back some grip on a semblance of routine. It’s nice to be back. I am mildly paralysed/terrified by the prospect of now needing to come up with something ELSE to publish here now that the last project has concluded (accidental short story that was recently known as Shipwrecks and Stupid Questions and now has a shiny new name). But also excited :)
Okay here’s a project udate:
THE VAMPIRE SHIFT AKA ‘the main novel’ — still only have an extremely vague skeleton, in terms of storyline/direction. I don’t want/need to have all the details sketched out, but I think I need more than what I currently have. This will involve me making at least one (1) attempt to — uh, *checks notes* — ‘stop being a coward.’ Exciting, right?
ACCESS ALL AREAS AKA ‘the porno story (OG)’ — okay, this is embarrassing. I wrote the first draft, it was an excessively long trainwreck (the Jack Kerouac of porn stories, if you will) (I haven’t read On the Road, I’m just making a Reference from osmosis’d knowledge, dilettante-like), and I learned some things and then had massive trouble writing the second draft For Some Reason and now I may have — maybe! — maaaybe — totally lost enthusiasm for it. Okay, not totally, but functionally, sorta yeah totally. I think part of this is losing steam/deciding that surrender is looking real appealing now, and the other part is:
THE STORY FORMERLY KNOWN AS SHIPWRECKS AND STUPID QUESTIONS AKA ‘the spontaneously serialised short story whose final part I published last update’ — I’m quite happy with this story. So happy, in fact, that I’m going to Make A Whole Thing About It, which here means: giving it a final edit, then laying it out all designerly in a PDF with a sweet illustrated cover and maybe a few (new!) internal arts too. Are you interested? If yes, that’s amazing and I’m delighted. If no, I’m going to do it anyway because no-one asked for this in the first place and also, I can’t wait to turn my uni/career-gained graphic design skills to the production of an indie smut fiction zine.
I don’t have fiction for you today but I feel compelled to include something else. So here is a list of Things, generally, that I’ve been enjoying a lot lately:
All Time Low’s latest album Tell Me I’m Alive — hoooooly shit I love this entire record. So fucking much. Here’s 1600+ words of me gushing about it song-by-song if that sounds like fun to you. I wrote it in response to a friend being like ‘yeah, feel free to go through song by song’ and of course this is what happens when my delighted ravings are greenlit — REAMS.
Waterparks’ song ‘BRAINWASHED’ — all the manic feelings I have about Tell Me I’m Alive, I have about this one song. This is a fucking banger about insane limerence. Obviously I love it.
TTRPGs! Table-top role-playing games. I’ve gotten into them. It was only a matter of time. Shout-out to:
Wishless — two or more players, fantasy/sci-fi world, very flexible. No prep required so long as you can improvise storytelling a bit. It’s so fun.
Eyes on the Prize — fake-marriage court intrigue for two or four players. I’ve decided to try playing it solo as a journaling/writing exercise and have only just settled on characters/setup, but so far it’s been a fucking fun way to develop ideas. And of course, yes, I now have an AU (alternate universe) of The Vampire Shift brewing, because I’m pathologically incapable of committing to other characters at the moment.
Divined Journey by — a solo journaling game guiding you to use tarot cards as prompts to develop characters/plot for an entire story. I’ve just gotten started and am loving it. It’s so fucking fun. Look, I am aggressively secular, not very spritiual, and don’t buy the supernatural aspects of tarot, but — I love imagery and symbolism and creative rituals/structure that prompt idea generation/development. So obviously I love this game. I lack the patience to thoroughly study/consult the traditional card meanings at the moment so I’m mostly doing intuitive readings (making things up myself based on the imagery) … which is really fun. You do need a deck with meaningful imagery though (as opposed to a really minimalistic/purely aesthetic one), which brings me to …
The Linestrider tarot deck — y’all the art is so beautiful. So packed with symbolism. Love it. Perfect for intuitive readings.
The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V.E. Schwab — I’m partway through reading this (so if you spoil it for me, or tell me anything about the story, I am going to hunt you down and piss in all your most prized possessions) and I FUCKING LOVE IT. It’s about a young woman cursed to be immortal but forgotten by everyone she meets. I LOVE V.E. Schwab, she’s one of my two absolute favourite authors and this one … is somehow better than the other (INCREDIBLE) books of hers I’ve read. Highly recommend.
Everything Everywhere All At Once — an awesome movie. Go watch it. It’s better if you know nothing about it going in, if possible.
Palm Springs — another deliciously fun and awesome movie. It’s got Andy Samberg and Cristin Milioti in it. If you like the trailer, you’ll probably enjoy the movie. I LOVED it.
Chess — my partner’s been watching a lot of Chess Simp videos and I have now inevitably become obsessed with chess. I’ve been doing 5-minute games on Chess.com and routinely getting absolutely thrashed by said partner, who’s rated a hilarious 600 points higher than me. But hey, resilience-building and sweet, sweet victory with rare but extremely satisfying checkmates, right?
Cryptic crosswords — in case you’ve read this far and are still under any delusions that I’m anything but an artisanal-grade nerd.
And thus concludes this newsletter. Hey, can I do polls? YES I CAN DO POLLS:
Thank you for participating in this democracy. Lmao it’s not a democracy. I’m the benevolent autocrat of this newsletter, who is also indecisive and loves validation. That’s a really sexy quality, right? …That must be a sketch idea: insecure emotionally needy autocrat. If anyone makes this, show me.
ANYWAY. Thanks for reading! Stay fresh, cheese bags.