Posts Tagged ‘Kony 2012’

I’m about a third of the way through editing Video Rage. And while I was editing Chapter 12 yesterday, I had a bit of a problem that I had to really rack my brains to solve.

Does anyone remember the Kony 2012 video from two years ago? If you don’t, here’s a quick reminder: Joseph Kony is an African warlord leading a terrorist organization that recruits children to be soldiers and sex slaves. The video Kony 2012 exposed many people to Joseph Kony’s crimes to many people in the West for the first time, amassing nearly 100 million views and becoming one of YouTube’s most viral videos ever. However, despite a powerful Stop Kony campaign, a Cover the Night event, and a sequel to clarify points made in the first video, interest in Joseph Kony and Invisible Children, the organization behind the video, waned after questions of the legitimacy of the campaign came up and the video’s narrator/producer suffered a very public mental breakdown.

Maybe it was because I was really impacted by the video at the time, going out of my way to make a Kony 2012 T-shirt and participating in Cover the Night, but when I decided to make an original viral video in Video Rage, I wanted to use Kony 2012 as an example to compare to the viral video in the story. So I wrote it in, ignoring the reservations I had about using such a famous (and infamous video).

Well, perhaps there’s some truth to the phrase “Another year older, another year wiser.” I was 20 when I wrote that chapter, but I’m 21 as I edit the novel. And I decided to cut Kony 2012 from the story. It’s just that a well-known video like that being featured in my novel might do more harm than good, especially considering everything that went on in the aftermath. So I ended up replacing it with a fictional documentary that I made up pretty much while editing. It took me a while to come up with the subject matter behind the documentary and what it did to achieve the level of fame that it would inspire a viral video in the novel’s universe nearly forty years later, but I finally managed to come up with something that I was satisfied with. And hopefully any future reader will be satisfied with it as well.

So what’s the point of this post? I’m not sure there is a point. Maybe I just wanted to tell you all a story while letting you know how the editing for Video Rage is going. Or maybe I was trying to illustrate how something that seems like a good idea when you’re younger or at an earlier stage of a project (or both) can really seem like a bad idea later on and you just have to nix it. (Strange that Stephen King didn’t think of that when he wrote in that scene in IT with the kids all having sex with each other).

In any case, I’ve fixed what I considered to be a great problem with that one chapter of Video Rage, and I think that the rest of the draft will go smoothly…if I can stay on track with finishing the second draft of the book.

Well, that’s all for now. It’s late, so I’m going to bed. Have a good night, my Followers of Fear. I’ll update you on Video Rage and anything else that needs updating as time goes on. In the meantime, pleasant nightmares.

I love this shot!

Normally I’d be getting ready for bed now because it’s late and I need my sleep for classes. However, I started writing this evening, and I got so much of Chapter Twelve of Video Rage done, I was like, “No way am I going to let this chapter wait till tomorrow to be finished, especially with the amount of homework I’m likely to have!”

And I’m proud to say the hard work paid off. I’m now about one-third of the way through the first draft of Video Rage, the sequel to Reborn City. Well, it’s actually a little less than a third, seeing as the book has a planned 37 chapters, but it’s close enough, so who’s going to start a protest over it? Anyway, it’s a third of the way done, and I’m very excited to announce it.

The last couple chapters I’ve written for VR were actually a lot of work. I had to go through 10 and 11 twice before I could leave them alone, And Chapter Twelve had to be written just right so that it’ll have the impact I want it to have. In fact, a lot happens in Chapter Twelve. I bring up Kony 2012 in the story, and it has an impact on the protagonists, the Hydras. Yeah, I know that video, for all its hype, didn’t lead to Joseph Kony getting caught, but it was influential, which is why I use it in the story.

Remember this video? It makes itself known in Video Rage.

I also made a reference in the chapter to an early idea for VR called Bee Colony, in which the Hydras meet a colony of giant man-bees. Yeah, it sounds ridiculous, especially when you consider how Doctor Who used the idea with Agatha Christie. I thought so too about a third of the way into the outline, so I scrapped the idea and went back to the drawing board. It wasn’t until I saw Kony 2012 that I had an alternative to the man-bee plot, and it’s worked out better than the original idea, I’m happy to say. And the honeybees make an appearance in this chapter, though they aren’t man-sized or anything.

Now for the page and word counts. In total, the number of pages I have in this draft so far is 103 (double-spaced, 12-point Times New Roman font, in case you were wondering), and the word count so far is 28,039 words. Jeez, this novel’s coming together. I wonder how long it’ll be by the time the first draft is done. Heck, I wonder how long it’ll be when Reborn City comes out in November!

For now though, I’d like to take a little break from writing to rejuvenate and relax, or as much as I can while still doing schoolwork and working 3 days a week. In my spare time, I’ll probably take a few days, read a book, watch my shows, sleep, celebrate the Jewish New Year, edit chapters of Snake when I get them, and make jokes that are funny about thirty percent of the time. After that, I’ll probably write an article for Self-Published Authors Helping Other Authors, and then start on Part II of Laura Horn, the other novel I’m working on at the moment.

Until then though, I’m going to go to bed. Good night everybody, Happy New Year from your friendly Internet Jewish blogger and horror writer, and I’ll write again when I have the energy to do it. See you later!

Today in my history class we had a guest speaker, whose focus was African history, particularly in her native country of Liberia. While discussing the civil war in Liberia, she also broached the topic of child soldiers and Kony 2012 and how they related to her research. After class, I went up to her and told her that I’d recently published a short story titled Aasif (here’s the link for those new followers who haven’t read it yet: http://mobiusmagazine.com/) and that I thought it was interesting that she’d mentioned child soldiers and Kony 2012, which were the inspirations for Aasif. Not only did our guest speaker ask for the web address, she also gave it to my teacher, who also happens to be her advisor in the graduate school.

As we were all leaving the classroom, both my teacher and the guest speaker said they’d take a look at it…and possibly discuss it in class. Discuss my short story in class? Now that’s some exposure! And in history class too! What’s next?

Has anything like this ever happened to you?

Oh, happy first day of Septhember! The Buckeyes are preparing to kick Miami of Ohio’s butt, the sun is shining, and a certain little short story got published! The web address for Mobius Magazine is down below. Once you get to the website, you’ll find my short story on the left under fiction. I hope you enjoy reading it.

This story was inspired by the Kony 2012 video that came out back in April, and you can definitely see the influence there. The story itself may have taken me a week to write, but I credit the fact that I had great inspiration behind it that it didn’t take longer.

Please feel free to tell me what you think of the story. Did you like it? Hate it? Was there a particular part that stuck with you? Did you think a certain character may have been a racist caricature of some ethnic group or another? Whatever your thoughts, please leave me a comment and let me know.

So, without further ado, here’s the address for Mobius Magazine. Hope you like what you read.

http://mobiusmagazine.com/

That’s right, ladies and gentlemen, another one of mine is getting published! Oh my god, so happy right now! The illustrious magazine Mobius, which deals with literature involving/revolving around social change, has decided to publish a short story I sent them, and it’ll be coming out in their fall edition in September (I’ll do a post then when it comes out).

“Aasif” was inspired by the Kony 2012 video, which I’ve covered before on Rami Ungar the Writer. I thought about doing a story involving child soldiers and the warlords who force them into killing, and then I started writing. What resulted was “Aasif”, and I’m so happy it’s getting published.

If you want to visit the website for Mobius, maybe see if you have anything that matches their criteria, the link’s below. Gotta go, I’m dancing in my kitchen.

http://mobiusmagazine.com/

Volunteers for Cover the Night. I'm the guy at the very end of the top left.

On Friday night at 8:oo, about twenty people, most of them students, gathered together behind the Ohio Union to Cover the Night, an awareness raising event to bring attention to Joseph Kony. Among them was me. And I had an excellent time, if I do say so myself. We basically covered the edge of south campus and went all the way into the very heart of the Short North, Columbus’s artsy shopping district. All told, we must’ve handed out at least 200 fliers and talked to nearly as many people, trying to get them interested.

Because that’s the whole point of raising awareness, right? So that people get interested and do something about it. And this was going on across the nation, if not the world, so I’m really happy that I was able to be apart of it.

I hope to turn this into an article for the Pulse, even though I told my editor my next article will be about something else (hey, nothing says I can’t do two articles, right?).

A very good way to spend a Friday night.

I know, that title sounds like something after a NCAA basketball game, but I’ve already used “update” twice in relation to winter quarter, and I don’t want to be redundant.

Now on to the news. Well, I had a slightly lower GPA this quarter, a 3.1, but I’ve got less classes next quarter and despite the reviews of some of them, they don’t seem too difficult or terrifying to me, so hopefully I’ll have a higher GPA than this quarter. I’ll even be taking a class on the search for extraterrestrial life and ways of going about it (yes, my school offers a class on that, you can take it to fulfill a science requirement). Although I don’t believe in alien visitations, I still think the class will be interesting to take. Though if we’re going by what our book teaches, it’ll mostly be what allows life on Earth and how we go about looking for that on other planets.

And as for writing, I’m still working on the final edit for Reborn City, but I hope to get some more of that done. I also wrote a new short story based on the Kony 2012 video I mentioned in my last post. I hope, after that story’s been edited, that a certain magazine I know might want to take it. Fingers crossed, right?

I’m looking forward to spring quarter. More flexible schedule, more time at work, what could go wrong? Wait, don’t answer that.

See ya next post, when it strikes my fancy to write one. Have a good spring break.

I just saw the Kony 2012 video on YouTube. You know, it’s one thing to hear about kids being put into armies like that. It’s another thing entirely to be confronted by the evidence like that, all in your face, and want to do something about that. And you know, I do want to do something about that. Heck, I’m now writing for The Pulse, I start my first assignment this week, I’m all about the social activism now.

So, I’m in.

SPREAD THE WORD. TAKE HIM DOWN

Joseph Kony has kidnapped nearly 30,000 children and forced them to become soldiers and sex slaves for his private army, the LRA. He is wanted by the International Criminal Court, the Ugandan army, and human rights groups for war crimes and crimes against humanity.

 

I’ll do what I can to help spread the word and bring Kony to justice, because no child should be abducted from their parents and forced to be a soldier or slave, and no parent should have to suffer their child going through that. On April 20, 2012, I’ll even go out and do the Cover The Night, an event happening in nearly every major city where we put up posters, stickers, you name it, to spread the word. I don’t care if it’s the Jewish Sabbath, God would want me helping people.

Finally, I’d like you to check out the website and the video (I’ll be putting them down below at the bottom of this post). If you don’t like what you see, spread the word. You may be an individual, but when an individual is motivated to do something big, all they need is to find others who feel the same way, and they can change the world.

So let’s change the world together, and nab Kony by the end of the year.

Thank you.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y4MnpzG5Sqc

http://www.kony2012.com/