Yakuza 3's trophy for the mini-game master is atrocious. I thought I'd be able to manage after getting 100% and platinum for Yakuza 0 and Kiwami. It's the general clunkiness of some of the controls that I can't stand in this one: batting cages, darts at higher difficulties, fishing, GOLF. After I beat the game on EX-Hard and get that trophy, I'm moving on to Yakuza 4. The platinum for Yakuza 3 will have to be a marathon over time...a long time. I'll go back to it at some point.
As for Chauvinistic Coquette, I'm again writing chapters out of order. A little less than half of the story focuses on the past, but it doesn't seem that way because of the way these chapters are interspersed. I made an outline and "settled" on 20 chapters total, with eight of them featuring flashbacks. It seems like a lot. I pace them so that they're relevant to the present. I don't have any issues with figuring out where to go at this point. Everything's clear now, which is strange. I'm not used to it. It's not a bad thing, of course. There's a catch to having this certainty with the plot, with the characters, with everything:
I'd say the main thing I'm hung up on is how futile all of this feels. I used to write because I needed to. I had things I wanted to say, to express. Chauvinistic Coquette is more of a commentary on my own cynicism with relationships. Sure, there's flirting and romance and whatever else. I don't feel an absolute need to write this like I did with my last two books. I didn't "need" to write The Scorpion's Empress, either. That was more of an experiment. This isn't so much an experiment as staying true to my word about rewriting this story someday and making it better. It's already better--it's different, it's hardly like the original except for the emotional rollercoaster and drama, and it has strong writing from me.
I think I'm annoyed that the stories I don't put as much of myself in, they turn out to have more appeal than the ones that are true to who I am as a person. It makes me have a certain disdain for this manuscript that only bolsters the cynical intentions behind the story itself. I don't care how long it will take me to finish it. If I suddenly decided to put it down, I'd only be disappointed in myself for not reaching the goal I'd set, on a superficial level. Other than that, I could move on with my life, write something else and not care about this book anymore.
The constant struggle between not wanting to show who I am and feeling sad that people only ever love an idea of me--
The result is a veneer on the page. It's up to you as the reader to either not notice and indulge in the illusions, or look deeper and find out what it is I want to say. The truth is never there, though.
You have not, and you have naught.
It's funny that I had all of this in mind months ago, and then some things happened recently that reinforced this theme, strengthening my vision for it in the story. Was it meant to be? Is that why this all feels so familiar in pain? Because I was fine for a while, and then this happened. It's great for the story, but not for me. It's because of the switch. I found my balance again, somehow, by working on this manuscript.
The one book I absolutely need to write after this will be long, and arduous (for me), and most likely obscure (to you). I accept that CC will overshadow it through mass appeal and popularity. I accept it, but it makes me uneasy, because this last book will be quintessential to me, to understanding who I am. And it will likely fly under the radar because of that.
It's all so convenient that cynicism is my main fuel for Venus and Astrid together. So very convenient, everyone.