On a tangent, I've been re-reading Continuum. This is the second full read-through I'm giving it, and it makes a lot more sense this time, thought the precise nature of frag and what happens when a narcissist causes frag in his Yet but dies before accomplishing it are still making my head hurt. The game is still damn fine for a detailed time-travel setting, and of course gives me the Further Information line to use. Fun.
Back from the tangent and speaking of writing, I've recently cleared out Orpheus' hard drives. Due to circumstances here the amount of use my poor desktop is getting is frankly not much, and the amount of games and other oddments I will never use is piling up. So I had a bit of a clear out of installable software. I needs do the same for music, and for documents.
The reason I didn't do music or documents was a combination of time and looking through the documents. Deep in the bit bucket I found some of the first fiction I had written. Bear in mind that this crap comes from around 1995. It was the first stuff I wrote with a word processor, and I had kept it around for sentimental value. This was back in the day when space on screen was nothing do do with zooming the document (thus everything is written in 14pt Times) and if I could get to three pages without losing interest I was happy. Now, for the longest time these files had been password protected, I assume to stop parents reading it and beating the shit out of me for being a really fucking awful writer. Fortunately, this was from back in the days when Word's password protection was a lot weaker than it is today. One password cracker written, and I was in to the files.
My eyes feel like burning.
Seriously, looking at this stuff I cannot see how I came to be where I am as a writer. Sure, there's a good level of spelling and grammar, but the stories and the characters... oi. One was a self-insertion thing based on a roleplaying game. I will say that I didn't use my real name. I will also admit that if I had it would have been "Stew MacCool" or some shit. Then something truly lame featuring me and some lass I liked at the time. And finally some excerable tripe which was my first foray into superheroes-in-prose. You may wonder how bad it really is, whether I am applying hyperbole to make what I write now sound better. After all, like many writers I am never truly happy with my work. I am not. This stuff exists. It is pathetically lame. It's not even funny in a pathetic fanfic way.
I am however going to keep these files around. They were my start. The first things I thought disk-space to be worthy of. And while I was wrong. I feel an almost perverse joy at starting with those stories. A kind of "That was where I came from. Thank fuck I got out when I did." They are a reminder of how much I sucked once and how much I will never suck again.
: I shit you not, ROT13ing the file would have been only marginally weaker security...
: No, I will not offer it for public use. It's useless past 6.0/95 anyway, and if I did it would come replete with a full explanation of how the encryption could be broken. It was an educational diversion, nothing more.
: If ever I had reason, you have no idea how much I would alter Option X. #6 in and of itself has to my eyes very forced pacing and jarring scene-changes, in a story which I had not fully realised until most of the way through.