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started: date lost due to a fiasco with saving in different versions of Word, but probably sometime in 2000
finished: June 4, 2001
While writing "The Arborire," I realized that I could take the idea a lot further with other stories about arbosens. The first idea I had involved a genetical engineer. Shortly after I had finished "Arborire" (the first time), I wrote the first few paragraphs of "Arbolacer" and then moved on to something else. Then, when I was done with the final revision of "Arborire," I went back to work on "Arbolacer."
My goal with this story was to explore the mind of a fanatic. I wanted to try to accurately portray someone who's locked into his mindset. It was a little disturbing at times.
Starting out, I wasn't sure just who was going to die. I knew the tree would, but I wasn't certain about the doctor or the fanatic. The ending itself was a little misty, but I start a lot of my stories that way. I make up stuff as I go along.
I wrote up to the part where the fanatic (at this point nameless) shoots. I then decided the doctor should die (for reasons I don't exactly remember) and introduced Cynthia as a secret arbosen, an idea I had come up with out of the blue some time back.
I wrote through Cynthia and fanatic's conversation up to the point where fanatic runs away. At that point I had to stop and consider what would happen next. Thinking through all possible outcomes, I knew that fanatic had to die. I wanted to wrap up the story, and that wasn't possible if fanatic lived. And this time, I couldn't fast forward to the future like I did the last time. So, I had fanatic commit suicide.
Next was the section involving Cynthia. I invented a name for the fanatic, one that I am proud of. Thomas Maven has a nice sound to it. (the name Maven came from the computer opponent in the game "Scrabble," though I didn't realize that until later).
At this point, I figured I was about done. However, considering all that had happened, I realized that this story was much darker than the one before and didn't have a happy ending either. I figured I had to brighten the end a little. So, I came up with the arbosen support group. It was a way to make a good thing out of a bad situation, and will also play a big role in future stories.
The name "arbolacer" came from some Latin word meaning to cut or something similar. I just liked the sound of the word. It seems to fit with its meaning.
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The "arbosen" idea is mine and may not be used without my permission.