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Christmas Carol: A Short Story - Part XV



Well, I'm quite happy to inform that I have finished Chapter 8 and I am now about to start Chapter 9.  I'm on a roll, and very excited, for I think I'll be able to get really far this week, if not finish the story altogether.  Wow!  That would be a treat, indeed.
I'm not counting on it, though, I think what I count as two more chapters in my outline will turn into four or more when I get to them.  I have just added a new chapter right now.  You see, Chapter 8 was titled "Snowflake Gardens" and, as originally planned, would have Carol discover the eponymous cavern full of magical snowflakes.
However, she didn't quite make it to the [i]Snowflake Gardens[/i] yet.  She's still in the tunnel leading to it when the narrator broke away to describe the [i]Evil Snowman's[/i] doings.  It turns out that Chapter 8 was all about describing the cunning plan of the Snowman, which includes two things:  reprogramming a toy robot to hunt down Carol, and setting up an ice cube trap to capture her.
We also get introduced to the [font='courier new']Toy-Of-Mischief 3000[/font], or [font='courier new']T.O.M.Bot 3K[/font] -- the affectionately named "Bad Toy" in the game, which the [i]Evil Snowman[/i] has reprogrammed to aid in his foul deeds.  This is how the [i]Bad Toy[/i] was originally described in the [url="http://www.carolvsghost.com/pg_story.html"]game's manual[/url]:
[b]T.O.M.Bot 3k, a.k.a. The Bad Toy[/b]
The [font='courier new']Toy Of Mischief 3000[/font], or [font='courier new']T.O.M.Bot 3k[/font], can be found in most little boy’s Christmas Lists this year. However, don’t be fooled by its cute and mild demeanor—[i]this toy is designed for mischief[/i], to the chagrin of mothers everywhere! This one is especially naughty, for the Evil Snowman has reprogrammed it to aid his foul deeds.[/quote]
That little blurb turned into three whole paragraphs in the book, which retains the feel and most of the words intact.
Thus, it felt right to rename the chapter.  Playing with words together, my wife and I came up with "A Devilish Device," which I thought was clever but a bit obscure.  I then thought of "Mischievous Machinations."  Both of them alliterative, which I like, and both of them suggestive of the mechanical fiend set loose by the Snowman.
I'm keeping "A Devilish Device" for now because my wife prefers it, but the more I think about it, the more I personally like "Mischievous Machinations" better.  The alliteration is more pronounced, and the words are even more suggestive of a master plan which includes a robotic machine.
In any case, both are better than my original idea, the utterly simple and commonplace "A Clever Plan."  If anybody is reading this blog (apart from myself, of course), I would really appreciate their opinion on both titles.
Anyway, so "A Devilish Device" it is, for the moment, which moved "Snowflake Gardens" to Chapter 9.  My outline shows now 11 chapters plus an epilogue, which I imagine will turn into 15 or so by the time I finish.  I'm not worried, though.  My wife gives me this look of consternation and says, "It's going to be a novel!!" which makes it sound like a bad thing.  I typically respond with, "Haha! No, still a short story, just not too short."  However, what I'm really thinking is "yeah, I wish."
Like I said, I'm not worried, and like I've also said before, the story will be as long as it needs to be, and that's that.  Of course, once it's completed we'll likely go through some editing process and figure out if anything needs to be moved, removed, or altered; but I don't think about any of that right now.  Right now, I'm just trying to get the story out of my brain and onto the paper.  Er, word-processor document, that is.
So that's the progress.  I'm very happy with it so far, and now I can continue to follow Carol in that long tunnel she's in, and be around her when she discovers the magical "Snowflake Gardens."
     See ya'!


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