Monday, June 22, 2009

Eden's Gate and Danvers State

What I'm Listening To: The Dresden Dolls - Good Day

What I'm Doing: Spazzing (again) over writing a book.

Two days after my last post, in which I rambled incoherently about a nameless story constructed of a few ideas, and here I am again to present you with my newest project.

Eden's Gate. It takes place in a fictional mental hospital (based off of real hospitals, that I've spent the last three hours researching) in New England, and follows a boy named Zander Jaden who's haunted by demons in the dark, demons that want to use him to break out of their world and into the human world. He makes friends at the hospital, and finds something worth being happy about, and still manages to save his own life in the process.

It's dark and twisty, I think, or at least that's what I'm aiming for. I'm more familiar with writing fluffy, happy stories, angst-filled but not 'dark.' I guess it's... supernatural/paranormal, because of the heavy ghost/demon influences, but the main relationship is slash. (99% of my fanfics are slash, but it was Mami who gave me the balls to write a full-length slashy novel.) It's something of a by-product, though, at the moment.

It's amazing how quickly it came together. Amazing. Two days ago, I was angsting about having no outline, and no plot, and was just writing aimlessly.

Last night, I sent little excerpts from what I've written so far to Schatzi, and talked mental hospitals with her. She helped me figure out exactly where and what Edensgate is, because it carried on through to today, when I looked up Danvers State Hospital.

It used to be in Massachusetts, and was built over the site of the home of one of the judges in the Salem Witch Trials. It was abandoned in 1992, and torn down in the early 2000's to be replaced by apartment buildings, of all things, but it... it was gorgeous while it stood.

(I have a thing for old, abandoned buildings. Don't ask me to explain it.)

Isn't it beautiful? Danvers State Hospital, built in the famous Kirkbride style (that broken arch layout of the main building)

It's very imposing.

This is one of my favourite pictures of it:

Also of interest is the fact that the 2001 movie Session 9 was filmed almost entirely inside that hospital, and the building itself inspired the intricacies of the plot; the crew went there with the vague idea that they wanted to make a movie inside a mental hospital, and when they saw Danvers State, they decided on what it would be. Without Danvers State, there would be no Session 9.

Anyway, I'm rambling (is as my wont when confronted with something I love, such as old, abandoned mental hospitals) Looking up Danvers State lead to looking up other mental hospitals built in the Kirkbride style, and led to the firming up of the plot for Eden's Gate.

It was very sudden. When I woke up this morning, I had no idea WTF the story was about. Three hours of looking at mental hospitals, and the plot zipped itself up into one neat little package, from beginning to end. Edensgate itself (the hospital) told me a lot about what it's like, and gave me some very keen insights into what happens. (Yes, settings can be characters. Hush. Eversong-the-world is it's own entity, as well.)

So now I'm back into the constantly-grinning, uber-excited "OMFG I'M WRITING A BOOK!" mood that hit me with Eversong.

Eden's Gate nearly didn't exist. I started on it because I couldn't figure out what to work on next, but like I said before, I had no clear idea of what it was about. Now I do.


  1. WOW. The progress you've made since your last blog of coherent incoherentness is astounding. It's amazing what a little research can do for your story :)

    And can I just say that I LOVE Danvers State Hospital? Simply gorgeous ... in the creepiest way possible. That photo of the inside screams paranormal/thriller/horror.

    Do you think it'll be a stand alone or perhaps a trilogy?

  2. 15k word count so far!! That's 10k words today alone. I'm so excited about it. I'm a little worried that it won't be long enough when I'm done, and that I'll have to go in and add a bunch of stuff to it, but I'm about 1/3rd of the way into the story now, and I've still got another 2/3rds to stretch my wordcount out to something novelistic.

    Mm, the research helped so much. With Eversong, there basically wasn't anything to research, as it was all coming out of my own mind, and if I had a question I needed answered, I just thought about it for a little while until it came to me. I got about 2k into the story the other night, and it started fighting me, so I opened a new word doc, and rewrote it, taking bits and pieces of my original 2k and stuffing them into the new version. It's coming along so well. In a few weeks, I'll have written two whole books. This is more exciting than I can possibly convey via text.

    That creepiness is what makes it so awesome, though. And pretty much all of the Kirkbride hospitals I've seen so far are/were creepy as sh*t, just in the fact that they're all boarded up and closed down and falling apart, with paint peeling and broken windows and papers everywhere... Oh, I love it so much, though. I'd have given my left arm to have been able to poke around inside Danvers State while it was still standing, even for five minutes, and I've made it a mission in life to find one that's still whole, and if not open, then not patrolled by angry policemen. XD

    Mm. At the moment, it's just a stand-alone. XDD I kept feeling like it ... had to be a trilogy, however, because I don't know how to set decent limits on myself apparently, so I made a note at the top of my ... well, notes, that said THIS DOES NOT HAVE TO BE A TRILOGY, and it's come easier since I reassured myself that I'm not signing up for the long-haul with it if I run out of story at the end.

  3. This really has captured my interest Kori-chan! x3 I'm very excited hearing about it! If you need my peer editing skills developed since the 2nd grade to help, I would be more than happy to!!~~ xD Je t'adore.