M.A.P. Blasdell

Writing

Currently: Revising

Genre: YA High Fantasy

Summary: Fel is the daughter of Feldrin the Fool, the leader of the Five Warriors, protectors of the land of Fa. He was known to be able to make anyone laugh, and entertain even the most sober of crowds. He died on a final adventure, leaving the quest unfinished. Fel is experiencing waking nightmares, seeing creeping ooze out of the corner of her eye ever since she read her father’s journal. She has no hope of defeating the evil on her own, being a student of academics, not combat. So she reads further into her father’s journal, finds the names of his fellow warriors, and the first clues as to where they could be hiding.

Fel
Fel is the daughter of Feldrin the Fool. She never met her father, as he died during an adventure. She inherited his unruly red hair and his unfortunate clumsiness. It’s very hard to be taken seriously as a bean marketeer-in-training when you trip over your own two feet all the time.
Khal
Khal is viewed as the greatest magician in the world. He has abilities that could change the entirety of Fa with one flick of his wrist. Great magic comes with greater prices, however, and Khal hasn’t cast a truly powerful spell in years. The more magic he uses, the older he gets. Vanity takes precedence over his irritable nature and is literally a life saver. However, chasing after Thren–his trouble magnet of a husband–through bouts and bouts of danger tends to put more wrinkles in his brow.
Thren
 Thren’s magic is subtler than Khal’s, and uses his whispering voice to convince nature into working to his whim. Thren’s personality bleeds and blends with his magic, one of the reasons he’s one of the strongest whisper magicians Fa has seen in a millenia. A rational yet empathetic person, Fel relies on him for honest and reasonable advice in the face of constant danger and crotchety old men. Thren says the compassion he shows Fel comes from a place of duty-a trait all elves have-but there’s another reason, one he’s keeping secret from everyone but Khal.
Bandor
Bandor The Great has spent the last few decades drinking and trying to forget everything but the bottom of his mug. He is the strongest physically of the Warriors, despite chronic back pain. Because he emphasizes his physical prowess more than his mental, people often forget his intelligence. He loves reminiscing and his golden snake Slithers. 
Melkin
Melkin is the slipperiest of the warriors, and also the richest. He is a master of the swords, and his apprentice is his son, Mel. Fel doesn’t see any reason to be alert, but the dubious looks and warning talks she has with the other warriors make her think twice before completely trusting him.
Mel
Both socially inept, cynical and perpetually moody, Fel and Mel can’t stand one another. Mel is around Fel’s age, and is too living in his father’s shadow. He is trying to become the great swords master his father is, and more. One of his arms is entirely made of stone, and Mel refuses to tell them all how it happened. He has a soft spot for small animals but keeps a distance from humans and Bandor’s snake, Slithers.

Hello,

So, it’s Pitch Wars time! I’ve decided to enter my WIP because I believe I’ve revised this manuscript to the moon and back, and I’d love to make it all the way to Pluto (still a planet in both my heart, and my MC’s). I am also here for the community, and people have been all kinds of wonderful and helpful. I’m excited to submit, but I’ve also been loving the support and reading about my fellow hopefuls!

About my WIP

My novel, Eldora, is a YA Sci-Fi Fantasy about a teenage girl who is not at all excited to be part of a great adventure. Eldora thinks she’s too young for all the demands the universe seems to have for her. She’s not too keen on helping out the saggy aliens that abduct her from Earth, nor the arrangement they try to force her into after that. Eldora has no desire to risk her life for people she’s never met before. Even when The Fated–the organization that abducted her–tells her she’s the mortal reincarnation of the universe. Especially when they treat her like an object.

She’s something called the Essence. Powers include understanding all languages and sensing when something alive is close to her. One day she hopes she’ll be able to fly, or shoot lasers out of her eyes. Y’know, stuff she could actually use to protect herself. Or even aid her escape from The Fated.

When she escapes her abductors and explores the universe, she travels through jungles, deserts and ship hangars. Eldora sees worlds and meets people that make her understand what she endangered when she chose to run. She laughs at the funny, screams at the unfamiliar and occasionally stabs both with her sword.

Eldora’s not perfect. She’ll be the first person to say it. In fact, she struggles throughout the entire story with her warring selfishness and empathy for others. But she puts value on herself, even when those around her say she isn’t more than a bargaining tool. She’s sarcastic, slippery and uses humor to cope with constant danger. Eldora isn’t completely confident in what she’s doing, but she’s not going to let that stop her from fighting for herself.

About Me

  • My name is Magali Blasdell
  • My initials are M.A.P.B. Hence, M.A.P. as a pen name
  • I’m getting ahead of myself with the pen name
  • I’m the youngest of two
  • Studying English in college
  • Have just finished my second novel-length project (eep!)
  • It may be a mess, but it’s my mess
  • Lo-Fi music is an absolute gift
  • I can fly in my dreams
  • If I nap, my mind makes sure I have to run for my life
  • ūüáĶūüá∑ w/a dash of unknown European origin
  • I once made a music video where I cropped pictures of hedgehogs and put them into family photos

About Both

I came up with this story while I sat in my bed the summer before my senior year of high school. A challenge to myself. Write a novel. Prove to yourself you can pursue writing seriously, and stop dishing it aside like all the other hobbies you’ve had in your life. I was applying to colleges, prepping for the ACT’s (a way to test kids on their “intelligence” but just really singles out who can focus for a solid three hours while sitting in a classroom) and spent time wondering if all of it was really worth it. But I know that my senior year felt wonderful because I knocked out the first draft of my book. Then another. And another. And another, another. Then a blog post about how I “finished” editing my first manuscript. Hah! Try four more drafts, skipper. But for the first time, a hobby felt like something I could do every day, something that made my chest feel full. That tingling feeling in your cheeks when you’re smiling unconsciously was all the more familiar. So, when I wrote about a sweaty teenage girl who was perfectly content in Nevada, and ripped it all away from her, she returned the favor. Eldora ripped away my complacency and gave me purpose beyond studying.

Fun Facts

  • I try to guess the breed(s) of all dogs who walk by me
  • My five-year plan is to move into my sister’s attic and occasionally come down for Cheerios
  • Brooklyn 99 is ridiculous and that’s why I love it
  • I’m currently reading Six of Crows for the first time
  • One time I met Mike Ditka (led the Bears to the Super Bowl) and complemented him solely on his acting in Kicking and Screaming, a children’s movie about little league soccer

Thank you for stopping by, and best of luck to us all, mentors and mentees and otherwise! May we find good people to share ourselves with.

This time last year I had started writing a story. A vague dream of mine has always been to be a writer, sure. But a novelist? That was new. It felt right, though. So I tip-tapped my way through the school year, until April 2017 hit, and I typed two very important words:

THE END.

That was it. 53,318 words of a completed story, from beginning to end. For the first time in my life, it felt like I had the drive I’d need to become a big-boy author. I love my characters, the story felt true, and even when I wanted to give up, I surged forward! Because of this, I reaped the reward of completing a sci-fi/fantasy YA novel. A very important question occurred to me, then and there. What’s next? Sure, I’d read Stephen King’s¬†On Writing (highly recommend it, puts writing wonders into words) but waiting a whole month to look at the manuscript seemed like way too long.

And it was.

I had to distract myself through other means of writing. I got into a new TV show, started making bullet points for other short story and novel ideas. Still, the book was itching at the back of my mind. I had to do something, anything! After two weeks of waiting, I gave in and started editing.

What I did first was read through the entire story and comment on the major errors I saw immediately. Whether it was the grammar or plot holes, I wrote down a big “WTF” in the margins then forged forward, not looking too long at the mistakes. This is key. I found that obsessing over certain parts while still trying to look over the story as a whole was counterproductive to the entire process. The flow of the sentences was cringe-worthy, and it pained me to move past them without immediate correction. I know what you’re thinking: MAP, that’s super obvious. I thought so too. But my heart was firmly against my mind on this one, as if someone was going to sneak up and read my story before it was ready, see that scene, and proceed to shit all over it before I had a chance to bring it to the final form.

This, of course, did not happen. No one will see it if you don’t want them to.

Secondly, I marked down the plot holes in a separate journal, then went back and fixed those glaring errors. There’s no point in fixing a chapter grammatically if you end up taking it out because the plot’s direction has changed.

Thirdly, and fourthly,¬†grammar! Grammar is one of my greatest weaknesses in the fact that I hate conforming to it. Many years of writing have been spent avoiding these types of corrections. Not very conducive to success. I should also mention that I include sentence fluidity in the grammar section, because I have an addiction to creating long, complicated sentences that don’t make sense to anyone but me. So fixing them is a problem of grammar, as well. In my head at the very least.

Fast forward to September, and now, I have completed the edits brought to me by wonderful beta readers. This was edit number five. Beta readers, to me, were essential and so important to making the story stronger.

At this point, I feel like the manuscript is “done”, which I’ve heard is the point where you should be ready to query, and have agents tear a new one in your story! Is it weird that I’m excited for a professional to take the time to do so? Means they think it’s worth the critique.

In conclusion, writing a book is disheartening, thrilling, fulfilling and frightening all at once. But once you finish one? You’re finally not one of the millions who says “i’m writing a novel”, but you’re someone who says “I wrote one”. Concretely impressive instead of doubt-inducing is a great mile marker to pass in one’s life. Some people never get there, be proud if you do.

First AI author to make the New York Bestseller’s List

It is said that every year, the rate of the development of technology doubles. This has impacted people both positively and negatively, as society’s efficiency increased, but jobs were taken at the same time. Today, a novel written by an AI topped the New York Times Bestseller list for the first time in history. The story takes place in 2016, and revolves around the stimulating election of that year. For those of you who skipped U.S. History, that was the year Donald Trump was elected as president of the Old United States government. Many attempts have been made by programmers to create a system complex enough to comprehend and exert the appropriate effort to create a novel full of intrigue and a human-like touch. For years, there were disasters a plenty. Who could forget Mobile Rick, a cheap, volcano based rip-off of Moby Dick? Or when a computer simply wrote the exact words William Shakespeare did so many years ago? Programmers have been told to just “leave it to the professionals,” as novelist and New York Times bestseller James Mandolin remarked to our reporters.

“It’s ridiculous to assume that a piece of metal can replicate the experience of humanity. It may be able to craft a nice flow of words, but it will never be able to feel what it’s words really mean. To even allow it’s synthesized prose on the market¬†is an insult to writers everywhere.”

When asked if his passionate response was because he was #2 behind the AI, he had no comment.

We were also given the chance to interview the creator of the AI, Suzy Sherman.

It was easy to tell that Ms. Sherman was nothing less than ecstatic about this development. “It’s amazing, what she’s been able to do so far,” she replied when asked about her invention. “Imagine what she’ll be able to create in two, maybe three years?”

When asked about the inspiration behind such a project, Ms. Sherman simply shrugged. “I’ve always believed robotics had endless possibilities. If machines can work a factory line, why couldn’t they top book review¬†boards? I had a friend once give me the advice I’ve learned to live by. ‘Suzy,’ she said, ‘don’t ever let anyone tell you that there’s a level your work can’t reach.’ So I didn’t”.

Ms. Sherman’s invention also draws inspiration from a human dear to her heart.

“My wife, Carol, she was a writer. That’s where I got the acronym, C.A.R.O.L. Cartridge Based, Authentic Reverb and Oral Linguistics. I took some of her poetry, her essays, short stories. I took them, of course, from everywhere. Old videos I had, pages in her journals. I compiled their patterns into a computer, then ta-da! C.A.R.O.L. replicated her style. I simply let the robot decide what to do next.”

Ms. Sherman and her robot C.A.R.O.L. have an interview on Good Morning Ameranada this Sunday to discuss what this hefty development could mean worldwide.

Murder: By Man or by Malware?

Last Friday, a man was charged with the murder of his wife and two children. He turned himself in the next morning. The problem at hand?

He claims his Mind Drive was hacked.

Since the invention of the Mind Drive by Stephan Inkle, society has been able to expand it’s¬†ability to work together in cohesive and uniform ways. Grass¬†is¬†greener, the air¬†has become¬†cleaner. There have been few incidents, the biggest so far being a man forgetting what time it was every other Sunday at 2:00 p.m.

“It isn’t plausible that Mr. Cradings’ Mind Drive was hacked in such a secure net port,” comments Tech Expert Michael Morse, “he was only in the subway track for 30 minutes, hardly enough time for malware to be installed in such a complex system. The auto-bodies would’ve cleared him of it, and alerted the local authorities.” Michael Morse is the creator of the Technology Checkpoint and Registration department in the New¬†U.S. Government. One of the first security measures needed to keep the ruling majority of U.S. citizens using the mind drive safe and unhackable.

Mr. Cradings came home from work at 7:00 p.m., reported watching The Brainy Bunch for one hour, then remembers nothing until 12:30 a.m. when he found himself holding the murder weapon in his hand, his wife and children on the floor below him.

“I can’t remember what I did from 8:00 onwards,” he tells our reporter at¬†Future News, “and there was a time on the¬†Subway, from 5 to 5:05 that I can’t recall in perfect detail.”

Here I remind our Non-Equipped readers that with the Drive, one can remember every point in their day, before automatically clearing itself of unnecessary data when the user falls asleep. This helps one reach maximum potential, with their brain working at an increased rate of 40%. Such rise in efficiency has caught the intrigue of the American Militia Forces, and many test subjects were given Mind Drives to see how they worked in the field. One of them being Mr. Cradings. Before he worked for Steele Construction, Mr. Leonard Cradings was a member of the 3rd wave of Drive Soldiers placed in Biron, the new capital of what was once Greece. There he proved to be more capable, intelligent, and on task than the regular operative.

General Mercer works with several Mind Drive units, and has seen the impact they make on the field first hand. He stands by the technology, stating that, “the Mind Drives have proven to save lives on both sides of a fight. Civilians who were once cannon fodder can be analytically removed from danger, as our soldiers are now able to make tactical decisions that used to take us hours to plan, but with a higher success rate.” Basically, what used to take several high ranking officials five hours, a soldier like Cradings could do in five minutes, saving more people in the process. When asked about the state of Cradings mind, the general had no comment to make to the press.

“Something’s wrong,” Mr. Cradings stated, “and the people need to know.¬†I wouldn’t wish this on my worst enemy.”

Mr. Inkle sent his personal doctors¬†to do a service check, and we were told a thorough five hour analysis¬†of Cradings’¬†Mind Drive was done, finding no evidence of malware.

“What we have here is a man overcome with grief,” says Police Chief Sharon¬†Toews, “and ¬†he’s trying to find some sort of scapegoat. It just so happens that his scapegoat can be found behind his frontal lobe.”

To be safe, Doctors removed and replaced Cradings’ Mind Drive, and may remove it once more pending his trial and/or execution. Here I remind the public that criminals are not allowed the privilege of¬†a Mind Drive.

Cardings’ defense lawyer is pursuing an Insanity plea, as well as using PTSD as a possible catalyst to the multiple homicide in hopes of getting a¬†lighter sentence for her client. We caught Ms. O’Cannon¬†outside of the courthouse, where we were able to get her statement on the case. She did not come to the press lightly, stating, “what he needs is help, not persecution. He served his country. Just as he vowed to protect us, We the People must protect¬†him.” Ms. O’Cannon has been one of the top criminal defense lawyers since she graduated Brown University, a once Ivy-League status school, and has a¬†penchant for cases involving prosecuted veterans.

“I’m holding [Stephan Inkle] responsible for what happened to my family,” Cradings stated, “and I won’t stop until my name is cleared, and he’s brought to court¬†for what he’s done.”

Stephan Inkle was unavailable for comment.

Hello,

This is a mostly informal first post that finds me taking on a new form of sharing my work. Not for any monetary gain, just for schnitzel and giggles (that’s the phrase, right?). Anyhow, as anyone knows, the first blank slate is the most intimidating. So here’s me, filling that vast white field with somewhat of a sort of off-grey color. If you’re here, welcome! I hope to provide some sort of momentary bliss before you dive into another person’s world. Enjoy.

With An Undetermined Regard,

M.A.P.