Saturday, November 19, 2011

Week 4 - Wrap-up and Result Dissonance

Well, I've managed to complete about 10% of my novel so far. I have to wrap up for my assignment, which means looking at what I've done so far. Some key things about the novel is that I was exploring the idea of paradigm-shifts, cognitive dissonance, and how people express their feelings.

So far in the story, we have seen the sister's actions not match her thoughts, the difference in how she and her brother view the world, their reactions to suddenly finding themselves in each other's bodies, their in ability to let go of the fact that someone else is in their body, and I focus repeatedly on how each interprets the other's expressions, instead of saying what the other person is thinking.

Facial expressions is one of those things that I often tend to misread. Because of this, shows like Lie To Me are really interesting. I've tried to study other people's facial expressions, but I tend to only understand the faces of people I've been around a while with. I took an Empathy Quotient test over at and scored an 18 (people with Asperger Syndrome and high functioning Autism score and average of 20). As a counter to that, I actually scored lower on my Systemizing Quotient with a 14. I'm not sure if this says more about me, or about the quizzes. This really confused me since EQ and SQ tend to be opposites. Either way, it means that I think rather equally with both sides of my brain and that in both cases, I just don't do so very well.

Part of what I'm trying to explore with this story is not only how to write expressions and reactions, but also to learn and understand them a bit more myself. Also, the story is about two kinds of people that I've never been myself. In this sense I'm trying to create the lives of an outgoing person and a highly emotional person, and trying to find a way to make the imitation not only into reality but as a way of understanding why people like them behave the way they do.

As for how organized I've been with this project, I must say that I really wish I had less demands on my time. Even the one week I had less work to do at school, I ended up having over-time at work. So even then, I could not have the time I felt I needed. Instead my writing was gorilla style, typing in hundreds of words when I could. In the end I've probably only spent a few hours actually writing, when I had wanted to spend tens of hours.

At the rate I'm writing I would probably need another 27 weeks to finish my novel. Regardless, I'm planning to use this weekend, and next weekend to get as close to the end as I can. If I can beat last year's word count of 30,000 words, I will be very happy.

I'll be posting up my word counts, including my word counts of today and tomorrow, by tomorrow evening, and I'll post a final wrap up at the end of the month.