Tritti’s Ascension

Yesterday when I was writing or thinking about that wretched Wretched Excess plot I spent some time looking up other’s lists of master plots. So far I’ve only collected them into my writing wiki and skimmed the contents. I find the variety interesting; I may employ some of them in future months.

My twenty master plots book wraps up with a bit of a cheat if you ask me. Tobias combines the chiral Ascension and Descension plots as if he were running out of paper to print his book and just now noticed how similar they are to each other. I don’t begrudge him the aggregation, but I would be less critical had he done the same with his other matched plots.

Anyhow. He contends the difference between these plots and others is the gradual nature of each, the protracted crescendo or decrescendo of the main character. The plots I find them similar to, Transformation and Wretched Excess, should be administered quickly and focus on the effect each change has on the character rather than drawn out and focusing on the character…or something like that.

Both Ascension and Descension rather an ultra-real charismatic character who can hold a reader’s attention and carry the whole plot.


I keep thinking maybe a day with these plots in my head will turn them into something appealing by evening. I suspect I’d need to devote brain time to the effort to get anything out of it. Funny that.

I hope Tritti the Pilgrim from The Shanty thread helps me out here tonight.

Theme – Ascension

Setup – Tritti pilgrimages to ah’Taconschientee.


Plot Point 1 – Against tradition, Tritti decides to enter ah’Taconschientee to deliver the [McGuffin] Johnka gives her. She meets Brother Gane.

Pinch 1 – In the land-side market You attempts to kill Tritti. People she’s just met protect her with their lives.

Mid-point Twist – Johnka confesses to Tritti that he is a demi-god.

Pinch 2 – You kills Johnka but misses Tritti.

Lull – Tritti recovers from her wounds at Brother Gane’s monastary.

Plot Point 2 – Tritti inspires the monks to escort her back to ah’Taconschientee to complete the delivery.

Conclusion – Tritti fights off the folks she’s been battling and ultimately delivers the [McGuffin].

378 words on day 677

Watching the Wiz

Nodding off watching The Wizard of Oz I realized the Tritti/Johnka meeting and story thus far is quite like the Dorothy/Fortune Teller scene early in the movie.  I’ve not read the books, so I have no idea how it matches up that way.

It struck me that unlike the Fortune Teller, Johnka doesn’t make the slightest attempt to persuade Tritti to return home.  This realization bothers me for several reasons.  It makes Tritti appear old enough to be out on her own and I didn’t really want that appearance.  It reveals the author’s intent in the story of propelling Tritti toward Ah’Taconscientee rather than obscuring it.  And it apes the fantasy trope of gathering fellows for a journey to a prize.

Let me start with the least of my worries first: the aping thing.  My primary goal is to write a good book, but I’m sure I’d be somewhat satisfied with just a book.  I could do worse than to write an entire novel that aped fantasy tropes left and right.  The fact that it’s taken me so long to notice means that it is not as obvious as it feels or that I’m so hopelessly deluded I’m not likely to ever recognize my own short comings.  In any case, I’m not worried enough to stop.  I am glad I noticed.

Continuing to work backwards through my original order and upwardly through my increasing concerns brings me to Tritti’s age characterization.  I know when I initially wrote this I intentionally avoided starting scenes.  Tritti meeting Johnka in the middle of a desert already halfway to where she’s going wouldn’t make much sense.  Except it feels right.  I’ve leapfrogged the adolescent angst of running away and all the characterization to make it look plausible for her to survive.  If she’s there she must have run away and she must have been capable.  I guess the rest falls out as carefully done backstory.  Maybe it’s not so jarring that Johnka accepts her for who she’s becoming rather than turn her away for who she still is.  She’s earned the right.  In that case, I have some insight into what the two will need to discuss along the way.

And now the persuasion part.  Despite accepting her for who she’s becoming wouldn’t it be prudent for Johnka to at least try to turn her around?  Suggest comrade caravans headed back to where Tritti was coming from?  He could still help her out but only by making her life safer.  Which begs the question have I characterized ah’Taconscientee well enough (at all) as a place of ill repute?  As well as am I as an author being too transparent about Johnka’s role in this story.  Do his action need a little more realness to keep him from being an agent of the author?

Day 300

One Sunrise Coming Up Soon

Johnka’s loose schedule and plodding pace left Tritti unconvinced hitching a ride with him saved her any more time than traveling alone, on foot, with no provisions.  He rose each morning at the hour when late sleeping early risers woke.  He heated a brass basin of water and shaved his whole round face vigorously, but without incident.  Then he asked—to no one in particular Tritti eventually realized—”Let us see what we have for breakfast this morning, yes?”.  At which point the same rasher of bacon appeared from the cool-cupboard and was relieved of half a dozen strips with the razor lately employed on Johnka’s double chin and rotund cheeks.  Next he would say, “I’ve rinsed that of course, of course.”

This morning he surprised her by waking early.  So early, in fact, it was still night time.  “The desert is cold tonight.  Bring your blanket up to the cockpit after you get dressed.”

“What’s the hour?”

“Not sure dear Tritti.  It’s one of the ones neither of us sees very often…anymore.” Johnka answered and left.

Tritti wanted to be angry.  After all she’d been woken not long after retiring to her bunk.  But he didn’t sound like he was being purposefully mysterious, just uncertain about the hour.

She stretched and groaned awake as best she could in the short bunk.  When her exertions dangled her legs over the edge more than on she slipped the rest of her weight over the rail and stood naked on the floor.  Immediately curiosity fueled her speedy dressing.  Panties, tank, socks.  Tritti reached for her pants but thought better of it.  She’d worn them for five days in a run so far.  She wrapped the blanket around her body and shuffled out the door.

The earthy smell of roasted coffee greeted her for the first time since coming aboard.  She  continued shuffling to the bow of the sledge and the cockpit.  At the end of the hallway the three-step ladder posed a brief problem because she didn’t want to loose her arms from the warm blanket.  Instead of climbing, she sat backwards on the upper part of the ladder and maneuvered around in a half circle with her feet. Eventually she stood back up.

She flopped in her usual perch—the co-pilot’s chair—but said nothing.

The outside air drifted in cooling the cockpit.  After a while her body adjusted to the difference.  She wriggled an arm out to pick up the warm mug Johnka placed on the dash for her.  She acknowledged his thoughtfulness with a still wordless toast.  He didn’t speak either.  The starry night provided all the conversation necessary.

Tritti set the empty mug back down after drinking all the hot liquid and siphoning off the last dregs of warmth from the mug.  She retrieved her arm to the warmth of the blanket like a rabbit going to ground.  Johnka pointed to the empty mug and raised his head as a question.  Tritti silently shook her head.  Johnka broke their silence, “I know it’s bitter.  I don’t make it much any more.”

“Good that way.”  Tritti rubbed a drop of it from her lips with the blanket.  “I just can’t drink it much.”


Did a tiny bit of cleanup in the quoted stuff from yesterday.  You may or may not notice.

Day 299