Check below for information about my podiobook, "The Price of Friendship"

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The Price of Friendship by Philip 'Norvaljoe' Carroll is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 United States License.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

I speak for desmond

I wrote a 100 word story about Desmond on about the third week that I had started submitting stories to the weekly challenge. I kept hoping for the prompt to come up in a way that I could use it for this story....It took me 15 entries to finally win one and choose a prompt that would fit.

This week was the result, 'Chicken Nuggets', and everyone was a good sport about it. There were some good stories and I voted for each that I liked.

I had Des record my story. Both Lisa and I spent time saying the words and having Desi record them. Then it was tons of editing to get all the words in one long line. I recorded Bekah playing "Twinkle, twinkle, little star" for the intro and outro music.

I just listened to it on the Weekly challenge podcast and it seems like it came out pretty well. You can hear it and see the text at and the text of it is below.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Back at it

Ward choir started up again, yesterday, after the break for Christmas. We had six people show up, and no pianist. I guess I didn't give people enough advance notice. So I ended up trying to play the piano, as well as direct.

We are working on some great songs:

'My Shepperd will supply my need' arranged by Mack Wilberg. The Motabs have sung this one. It is a southern melody and has some beautiful words that have stayed with me since we sang this in 3rd ward 10 or more years ago.

'There is a hill' by Brown and Mabbott. It is a variation of 'There is a green hill far away'. I bought on piece and reading through the melody in my mind it sounded really bland. Fortunately, we have a piano at home. What a beautiful melody. It breaks into six parts at one point, and it may push our choirs abilities to its limit, but it will be wonderful.

'Woman, why weepest thou?' Written by Rob Gardner and available directly from You can hear the acapella group, 259, sing it on their 'Witness' album. It is a beautiful and moving song.

I may actually have to gird up my loins and make some phone calls this week to try and get more people out. Our performance for Christmas in both 8th and 10th, we're combined again, was such a high, for me as my first Christmas as director, and for the choir, because they sounded so good. I look forward to a wonderful year.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

I won

I'm a double winner this week. First time for both. I the weekly challenge on Great Hites, or course I was the only entry, maybe that made it a weakly challenge.

After entering 15 times on the 100 word weekly challenge I won. "Winner, winner, chicken dinner!!!! I've wanted to say that since I saw 21 for the first time.

My prompt, Chicken Nuggets, is the challenge for next week. I have been trying to get this prompt for 14 episodes now. I hope this story flies, I have been thinking about it for a long time.

Also, I got to help record a story for someone else, with Jeff Hite. We'll see what it sounds like when it is posted on the 100 word challenge today.

Here is my story going in the challenge today:

The stalker followed his prey across the university campus, keeping enough distance behind her to avoid detection. She was young and slender and he ached to hold her in his arms, to wrap his hands around her neck and squeeze the life from her.
He had followed her before and knew her schedule, her routine. Tuesday and Thursday nights, her class would begin in daylight, but would be fully dark when it let out.
A tidal wave of urgency washed over him. Crouching, ready to attack, he saw her, alone, unaware, last to leave Phys Ed 203, advanced kick boxing.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Great Hites

This week I entered Jeff Hites' story contest for the first time. Lawrence of the 100 word story podcast mentioned the prompt that Jeff had chosen, it was about space elevators. I first read about space elevators about two years ago in an astronomy magazine. The whole idea intrigued me and I have spent a lot of time since then imagining the process at work. I figured that now was the time to branch out and try a complete story longer than 100 words. I will post the story below.

I have enjoyed the 100 word story contests. I like the challenge of honing the text around a single idea until you have just the barest structure to present the idea. Recording the story has also been a learning experience, and though it may not sound like I have improved much when listening to the podcast, I have seen a remarkable decrease in time it takes to go from sitting down at the mic and uploading it to podcasting.isfullofetc.etc.

Writing the story of the space elevator felt almost like taking a relaxing run down a forest trail after spending a week doing nothing but speed workouts around a track. (I started running at the same time I started Nanowrimo, so my thoughts are also on physical activity.) It felt good to describe Jeremy's past, share some of his feelings, etc.

I heard the prompt on Monday, and the story was due by tuesday eve. While listening to the story after it was posted, I realized some inconsistencies. I caught one before I recorded. Origianlly I had Jeremy sprawling across the floor when the lift door opened.....Doh! That would be tough in low earth orbit. One that I didn't catch was his age. I had him as a child when Elison Onizuka died in the shuttle disaster. He sounds like a young adult, and has a little sister. That would put the narrator of the story, at his age, right about now. For a little more credebility, I should have written him in, at least, his thirties. My daughter, who is now 22, was born in Hawaii, but was not old enough to remember the space shuttle disaster, though it happened while we were there.

Oh, well. We'll see if my next effort makes more sense.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Nanowrimo follow up.

I have to say that the Nanowrimo was great experience. I started late and had to hit it pretty hard, but was able to finish a winner.

I had to average more than 2000 words per day. It was interesting to see my attitude change while the word count climbed. On the Nano site they give you encouragement based on where the average person would be on that day of the month. Starting ten days late, I could get the advance scoop on when I should start getting discouraged.

The first 10,000 words were a lot of fun, and everyday I felt like I had the whole world at my disposal and everything would be wonderful. The next 15,000 words were written from under a fog of discouragement. Every night when I sat down to write I would ask myself if I could do this, or if I shouldn't just quit now.

The weekend before Thanks Giving I pumped out a lot of words and brought myself to where a lot of other writers were, and I could see that I just might pull it off.

As I finished my last words on November 29th, I had a feeling of satisfaction that I had set a goal, worked hard, and completed it. I also thought that I had written 50,000 words of rubbish, and had expressed that sentiment to several people since completion.

However, I have started my first edit and rewrite and have found that I really like my story. I have found many places that I now feel are trite and some others that were poorly written. But I like it enough to go back through and make it right.

My goal has alway been to podcast a story. The original plan was for my scouting story, but I want to do this one. I am practicing recording my reading by participating in the 100 word weekly challenge, and now I have also entered in Jeff Hites short story podcast as well.

The plan is to spend the next two months editing and rewriting. Then have my brother proof read the story, and do a third rewrite. Finally, I want to take a week off in March or April and record the entire story. I don't know if I'll be able to get all the episodes produced in that week, but I should have a big portion of it done.

I emailed Mur Lafferty about my Nano experience and she read some of it on 'I should be writing' podcast. Here is the portion that applied to Nanowrimo:

These are the things that I learned from Nano.

Plot happens. I had listened to you, your interviews, and feedback talking about words per day. I always thought, ‘what a mechanical and unartistic way to create’! I found that putting out 1500 to 4000 words in a day squeezed creativity out of me that I didn’t know that I had. Plot twists appeared from around corners, and my characters started saying and doing some interesting things.

I also came to understand what ‘organic writing’ is. I would sit down at 8:30 pm, with a Monster energy drink, knowing that I needed 2000 words before bed. I knew where I wanted the story to go, but not outlined bit by bit.

Write now, rewrite later. If I worried about spelling, grammar, and consistency, or even coherencey, (at 10:30 pm, I get up at 4:30 am), I could get about 500 words per hour. Throwing all that to the wind, I would get 1000 + per hour.

Finnally. It’s a better story than I thought. After it was over and people would ask me, “Did you make it?” I would respond with, “Yeah, but it’s mostly rubbish.” I started my rewrite yesterday and found that I really like my story. It has potential and I might as well take it as far as I can. (Being a big Nathan Lowell fan, [not to mention a big Mur Lafferty fan]), I am going to podcast it initially, while submitting it to regular publishers. If I can cast a shadow even faintly comparable to these two giants, I will feel gratified.