The car door clapped, sending a jarring ring through my head, as I hopped out of my distinguishable gold car and shut the door behind me.  My dad popped open the trunk, and and hefted my heavy, but rather small, red backpack and sleeping bag out of the trunk, but swept around to face an approaching person from behind.  I plastered on a smile as the familiar Executive Director hailed me.
       - Very, very light based off of The Adventures of The Second Year.  (That is, my second year at this church camp)

Okay, I was a bit nervous from excitement, but plastered isn't the right word if I was to write it as close to the truth as I could.  But nervous from excitement was true (and nervous for others reasons too - I'm not the most social guy on earth).  I was stoked to be on this adventure - another season of my life - another road worth traveling (to quote one of the songs we sang).

Now, I did quite a good deal of things before this happened, such as meeting and getting to know the others that would be in my cabin (getting the last of the top bunk beds), and getting situated in our cabin (which was called Wissahickon, and was technically two cabins, boys' and girls' side).  After we played a series of name games, we did a few other procedures (checking with the nurse for any medications we'd need, etc.) but that's all pretty boring to read about.  So I'll skip to the first time my blood would really pumping that week.

Darkness overshadowed us as we hiked through the woods.  We numbered close to a dozen, my cabin and I.  The details as to where we were going I do not remember, as it was late at night.  I was last in line.
I stepped over on a wet rock and slipped, falling back and crushing my skull on a hard rock.
Or, that's what I thought it was.  But you can't always remember exactly what it was in dreams.
Yes, it was a dream.  But instead of that cliche and awfully aggravating movie prank of 'it was all a dream', and find out that none of it was real, it was real.
I woke up to feel my head wracking with pain that corrupted my senses.  This time, it was real.  It felt like my head was rattling around in my (apparently) very thick skull.  All I could do was moan as I heard a voice reach out to me.  Something about "are you okay?"  I struggled up, sitting on the edge of the bottom bed of the bunk.
Finally, I was able to respond to my councilor who had spoken to me.  I hardly remember what I said - I think I did.  Bu t . . . how could I remember anything?  I fell about five feet onto a solid as rock surface.  I grasped my head in my arms.  The pain that I felt seemed to blot itself out - but it was there, like a monster controlling me.

       - Much more realistically based on the true events of The Adventures of the Second Year.

My cabinmates told me it woke them all up.  The thump.
The councilor was going to take me to the nurse then, but in 5 minutes most of the pain had gone away and I lay staring at the roof with a major headache - reflecting on what had happened.  (And no, I was in the bottom bunk, I got back up, despite having entirely rolled off the low sided bed.  But as time wore on, as the night wore on, and as I continued to stare at the roof, I felt my eye lids grow heavy.  I struggled to stay awake, but unless I am doing something besides staring at the roof, sleep has won victory over victory.  So I clutched the shallow sides of the bed with my sleepy strength, and finally surrendered after close to an hour of watching the roof - and listening the horrendous fan go: "knock, knock . . . . knock . . . . knock, knock," in a horrible fashion (though by the end of the week, I found myself used to it and I cried.  Just kidding).
When I awoke, I was still grasping them.

Day 1 Moral:  Never take the top bunk of a bed if you have ever had a dream in your life that deja vue'd upon you.
Day 1 Moral #2:  Don't take it anyway.
Day 1 Interesting Fact:  This is the second time I easily could have had a concussion, yet evaded it somehow (I must have a hard skull.  Either that or a brain that won't get easily bruised. :P)

The rest of the week?  That flew by in a blur.  I had arrived Sunday, and on Tuesday we climbed the climbing tower (what else would you do with it, eh?).  And after that, we participated in the very unnerving "Giant Swing".  After being harnessed in, you were raised probably 30 or 40 feet high, and with a bungee cord stretching to your right on a tree, and an identical one on the left, one of the cords was let go, and I took a free fall before speeding through the air in a crazy speed.  As those before me had done, I let out a scream.  Although honestly, it was more of a shout of excitement, even while we were supposed to sound like little kids being scared out of their hair, eyebrows, and pants.
(Speaking of hair, I did not just get a mohawk, which was later shaved down to a buzz cut.  It did NOT happen . . . . . . . . . I think I'm still in the denial stage of how much different I look than I'm used to.)

The days continued to pass faster than I wished they would.  And while I was there only four full days (5 nights) it felt a lot longer.  And as an official as official note can get . . .
. . .

And I realize I just broke a lot of grammatical rules there - but I don't care, those guys in my cabin are worth it. ;)

And yes, if you're reading this Michael, I'll find a way to get you in one of my book sometime.

And besides my actual cabinmates, I met a lot of other awesome people, even a couple from last year.

Wednesday we took a hike.
Up a mountain.

I took the hardest path, that, while it was the shortest, we were the last in arriving, for their were two other trails I could have taken.  The others left 40+ minutes before us, and so once we got going at last, we really started making headway.  Kinda.

We were going straight - I mean straight up the mountain.  My legs felt like shrapnel by the time we reached the time.  Little did I know (or many of the other campers) that we were hardly done.  We took about another fifteen minutes before stopping at a rockpile site where we ate our packed lunches (poor councilors and other staff members took the load) and then head off again.  We were going along the crest of the mountain, for while the other two trails took varying paths up the mountain that slowly advanced up and forward toward the destination at the same time, we had not.  For marching straight up the mountain does prove to not get you sideways very far.

And walking along the ridge crest was the worst part, because it was extremely rocking forcing you to take awkward steps and nearly trip yourself up.  It felt like I had triple twisted each of my ankles thrice by the end.  Several of the others had fallen, water was running short (I had conserved my water from the start of camp, because I forgot a water bottle and only managed to get one of those small, not-meant-for-hiking plastic bottles), temper was running short, and most of us were a bit annoyed (not to mention dripping sweat).

I had a good time, though I wouldn't have said that with such enthusiasm at that time.  So once we reached the top of the mountain, we camped up there for the night.  That was awesome.  They served tortillas for supper, and 'Darn Goods' for midnight snack (awesome camp tradition).  And we also acted out a skit after supper.  That... was alright.  But I was a door. >.<

Anyway, all throughout the week it was fun singing (yeah, I have to admit it), but the singing fun-ness may have pinnacled there.  I don't know - it was all great.

They read Alice In Wonderland that night as we watched the sky from beneath our sleeping bags - but  I fell asleep halfway through.  I tried to stay awake though, because never before had I heard the story of Alice in Wonderland.  Shall I ever?... probably.
I saw a shooting star also, making it the second time from the top of Tussey mountain.

More to come,
~Robert WordWeaver
Nigh a month back, I entered a script writing contest through Creation Works, a group of friends and homeschoolers dedicated to, "use creation evangelism to build the faith of believers and challenge the non-believer to consider the truth of God's word."

This script contest, to write an audio drama script, was to be based on the creation message in the Bible.

I wrote my script in several weeks time, and honestly, didn't expect to win.

To be frank . . .  (and spoil ALL that great drama I could work up in you)

I did.  First place grand prize winner.

Which means . . .

I get my own audio drama made for me.  Hehe. :)

MY script is being made into an audio drama . . .

I'm mindblown.

There it is.  The cold, hard, PROOF.

And now, because I really don't want to be boastful or nuttin' like that, I'll do a little advertising for CreationWorks.  :)


Sent off to his uncle’s farm, Zac clashes left and right with his cousin 
Penelope as they grow a mutual dislike for each other, even while Zac is 
slowly discovering the truth of creation embedded in nature for himself.  
But is his dislike for Penelope enough to drive him away from God 


Aaand, if you live in California (or don't mind spending several hundred on air tickets!) you could be a star (this is gonna be big ya know, you'll be seeing my name EVERYWHERE in a couple years ;)

But in all seriousness (you realize that some of that was a joke, right?  It's hard to tell when someone's joking over a blog post...), please, check out, when time comes, find the audio drama (A Search for Truth, is it's name) and listen to it.

(Oh, and yes, I finally am back from camp, but I have just procrastinated from blogging until I could fully send out all this information to you all, and yes, I will be blogging about my camp adventures.  The pleasant ones, and the not so pleasant ones . . . like nearly getting a concussion.)

Let thy fingers upon keyboards fly,
 ~ Robert WordWeaver
Well, as some of you know, I started a second short story contest a while back.  The winner would receive a signed print edition of The Traitors Tale.  The second place winner would receive an ebook of The Traitors Tale.  The competition was to write a short story.

So now that it's two days after I meant to announce the winners, I shall.

In first place comes... (I'll simply use his first name for his privacy) Jamie's short story, The Case of the Stalked Starlet; an intriguing "James Irons" story that hooked me on paragraph one.

And in second place comes... (I'll simply use his pseudo name) Raptor's short story, about an elite police force unit in Rangiora, New Zealand that ended with an unusual twist.

Congratulations to our winners!
And of course, they'll be receiving their prizes in time.

Unfortunately, it will be a week's delay (since I'm venturing off to church camp).

Well, that wraps up this post.  I will have something quite interesting in my next few posts.  Watch out for it, they're coming at ya.

~Robert WordWeaver
To be an outliner, or to be a pantster? (technically, if actually Pantser, but I chose to use a seat of the pants spin of my own).
To plan?  To write whatever?
To think intensely through every microscopic detail?  To spontaneously erupt?

It's hard to outline, very hard.  Many, many times, I feel the urge to drop the outline for the moment and start writing - I can come back to the outline later, can't I?
If I create a plot mistake halfway through the outline and don't realize it, what's the point of writing an outline?

If I'm writing a seat of the pants novel, I will only have a rough idea of what will happen next in my novel.  I make a mistake?  I rewrite the novel (or a chapter or two accordingly).

I, myself, outline.  But it's debated on just about every writer's forum, every writer's circle, every place where an outliner and a pantster clash.

So which is better?  Outlining or Seat-of-the-pants writing?  
(Best way to do this is Pro's and Con's style, wot?)

1. You'll have an 'adventure guide' to help you through the more difficult parts of the novel.
Any place you are stuck in, you'll have a helping hand to pull you out.  (Or, relating to my last post, if supposed 'Writer's Block' snags you, your outline is the prime option to save you from disaster).
2. If you plan your novel, you will be adding to an already good storyline as you write, rather than making it all up as you write.
3. Your outline is the best way to find gaping holes in your plot, and can therefore be worked out.

And now for the Cons:
1. Supposedly, outlining constricts your creativity (we'll get back to this in a bit).
2. Outlining is excruciating work and will leave you brain dead for at least 48 hours. (I'm just kidding!)
3. For some, they feel an outline constricts their creativity while actually writing the novel.

1. Having the entire novel to be wildly creative is just fun.  Awesome.  And inspiring.
2. You can explore whatever idea pops into your head.
3. You can write tons - real fast.

1. The likelihood of your first draft (or, for that matter, 2nd and 3rd draft) being strong material is microscopical.  Meaning - it's not too likely.
2. In writing high fantasy, there is almost no way you can seat of the pants without a good deal of outlining and planning (which makes it not seat of the pants).  After all, if you seat of the pants a magical rule on page 34, it's still going to have ramifications on page 3,973, meaning - your hero can't defeat your antagonist because that would be defying the magic rule!
3. Pantstering leaves you vulnerable to the snapping teeth and jaws of our imaginary friend- that is, imaginary nemesis, Writer's Block.

So... what is best?  Well, just like every other blog post or article about this style of writing, I'm going to say whatever works for you is the best.

But.  This isn't the end of this post.  Oh no, we have more to discuss.
Do people who use outlines really not where pants when they outline?  For me, in this instance, it's true... because I'm wearing shorts.
Okay, okay, enough with this joking.

In the cons list of outlining, one of the cons I put down was that outlines constrict creativity.
To some, this is true.  But the truth is, having an outline keeps you in the borders of sanity - and realism.
How can the space monkey from Jupiter appear in chapter 5 when it was clear the Hero Rabbit was the only one Sunny Zoney and Freddy Fibonacci were able to Teliwire???

An outline will keep you from writing that mess, so that later on, you won't have to rewrite the whole chapter.

Okay, so does this mean that con isn't really a con?

To some extent, yes.
But the Pantster side does have legitimate concern for an outline (often of a fantasy story) being TOO detailed, thus instead making our Adventure Guide into a Math Lesson.  Or better - a chemistry one.

A Base Positive NEVER reacts social biologically with a N Negative, because hippopotamus is spelled with only one S! Great Golly, you kids never learn!

See what I mean?  No?  Neither did I...

Anyway.  So just how much should you outline?

This is an example that I've begun with.

- The Indians from the Great Lake Regions are living peacefully, until one day a once great tribe, the sworn enemies of the Iroquois, flee to the Iroquois pleading honestly for a treaty.  The Iroquois hold council, and finally decide to do so, after finding what their enemy tribe had fled from.  The white settlers were coming - white skins!

That's just one chapter in the style outline I prefer (and an original WordWeaver method, ;) although, someone else probably came up with it before me without I knowing it).

So, now that we've gotten nowhere with this post, you can see why I prefer outlining - this post, after all, was written without any pants. ;)

~Robert WordWeaver