TTC: Commentary 01

“Time & Tied” PARTS 1 & 2

DAE_MathTans1. Original Date Of Completion: OCT 15, 2000
2. What I Was Doing: Finishing my University Degree
3. Hard Date Change: Carrie originally travelled from Sept 21, 2001 to Sept 18, 1999.
4. Other changes of note:
-Originally the story began with ‘At the back of a rather nondescript two story house, a window rose.’
-Carrie was 17, because I had a bad sense of how old a Grade 11 student would be.
-Dialogue was tightened up. Like, a lot.


I’ve decided to take a page from Scott Delahunt’s blog over at “The Chaos Beast”. (Go check him out! He’s presently publishing a serial story about a high school for delinquent girls.) Every week, he goes “behind the scenes” of his latest entry. I feel compelled to do it here too, because this story has a WHACKLOAD of history (plus a future?). Not to mention my non-fiction is sometimes more popular reading. But I’ll only do this every other week. Why?

Because two parts actually form one entire episode. I originally envisioned this as a television series. With a cliffhanger heading to commercial, then again at the episode’s end. Basically, Babylon 5, Buffy and Farscape were notable influences, but I felt like an hour was too much. Regardless, I aimed for (and accomplished) a 22 episode season.

Then, at the start of 2013, a publisher was looking for stories. So this tale was pulled out, dusted off, and revised to remove all “hard dates” (which were now over ten years in the past), along with turning the 22 episode season + pilot episode into two books, “Awareness” and “Escalation”. The publisher wasn’t interested. Two years later, I’ve sensed this thing is on the cusp of needing more revisions due to technology, etc – so it’s going out there instead! Boom!


If you’re thinking “Time & Tied” came kinda fast on the heels of “The Epsilon Project”, you’re right. Two main reasons for that:

1. The “April Fools Day Swap” of Web Fiction Guide. Optimistically, I thought I might get a bit of a bump in viewers after that – but my story arc was finished, and it would take a couple weeks to get a new scenario going. Which could lose those viewers. Also, the story I wrote for “Legion of Nothing” (check that out too!) involved Time Travel. So why not?

2. The School Musical. I’m a teacher, and April is always the busiest month, because I help with the musical (after school, weekends) in addition to it being report card time. Thus Easter Weekend was my last real free time for the month – so I decided to use the time leading up to it for queuing things up. In fact, the bulk of THIS post is being written on Sunday, March 29th. Hello from the past!

The shift to Friday updates is because they’re supposedly better for traffic, and I only needed Sunday updates in order to pull a rabbit out of my head if I had no “Epsilon Project” writing time from Wed-Fri. I DO plan to return to that series for a break in between books… or maybe only between Books 2 and 3 (there are currently 4 unpublished “Time & Tied” books, and I’m working on the fifth). Or was “The Epsilon Project” a really BAD idea? If not bad, is it better to stick with this for now? Let me know – we’ve got another 20+ weeks to decide.


XoversCNot much to say about story content yet. We’ve seen the two primary characters, and Julie’s been best friend name-dropped. I tend to start slow… there were only 4 characters through the first 22 (admittedly shorter) entries in “Taylor’s Polynomials”. We’ll be with Carrie and Frank for a while. Incidentally, Frank’s last name was obtained by mashing my hands down on the keyboard, then transposing a couple letters for readability.

While I list the original date of completion above as Oct 15, 2000, the earliest text file I have is from DECEMBER 1999. It began: ‘Carrie Baker dropped lightly to the ground and brushed off her hands.’ It continued with her grumbling about being grounded by her MOTHER and STEPFATHER for some phantom charges on her mom’s credit card. After which she headed for the party, hoping to see Jim MacDonald now that he’d broken up with Cindy Carter. (I have no idea who those people are, they never appear in the present story.) She found the machine the same way, but it was Sept 20, 2004.

Even before THAT, I have some handwritten notes (for a 13 year old and 14 year old Carrie respectively – she’s a brunette). And more handwriting came after 1999. I’ve kept it all carefully in a folder. I’ll likely scan some of that material for future commentaries – in particular, I used to sketch illustrations, even back then. The one thing which has been pretty constant through every incarnation is the functioning of the time machine. But that will be revealed in-story.

Hm, anything else? Oh, “Timely Discovery” was the original chapter title, “Time Out” was my recent addition after the episode split. Also, the original name of the ENTIRE story prior to MARCH 27th, 2015 wasn’t “Time & Tied” at all. It was “Time Trippers”. I’ll definitely talk about that in a future commentary.

Coming This Friday: The Plane Truth
(That chapter is already up on Wattpad, if you want to investigate there.)

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