Q&A: Titles

Over the years, we’ve been asked a couple of times about how we came up with the titles for the series/what meaning they have. On April 8, 2012, Chaos asked on our forum and I wrote the answer below. There are possible semi-spoilers for the series in the answers, mostly in the themes. Q: Question from Chaos: I’ve been wanting to ask about the story titles for a while now. I’ve wondered about the meanings behind them, especially of the series name In the Company of Shadows and Evenfall. I can see the meaning behind Afterimage and Fade, or at least some of it. With what Sin goes through in book two and the early information we find out in book three, some of it is obvious while maybe some other meanings may be more elusive. I finally decided to look up the word “shadow” and garnered many results, some of which I hadn’t thought of. 1. darkened shape of something in light: a darkened shape on a surface that falls behind somebody or something blocking the light 2. darkness: relative darkness in a place that is being screened or blocked off from direct sunlight Part of the room was in shadow. 3. hint of something: a slight suggestion or hint of something 4. ominous gloom: a depressing or ominous gloom 5. threat: an ever-present threat or blight 6. dark area under eyes: a darkened area of skin under the eyes usually caused by fatigue 7. overshadowed state: a state in which somebody is always overshadowed by another person 8. somebody always following after another: somebody who constantly follows another person around wanting to be with the other person 9. person secretly trailing...

WMHB: The Internet-friendly Guard

We’ve been working on the edits of the Evenfall rewrites this weekend. We broke the book into quadrants so we’ve been working on different chapters. I’m editing a scene in Evenfall chapter 22, and I cannot tell you how much I want to write something in dialogue I really just can’t do. But if I can’t stick it in story, at least I can blog about it. Behind a cut for spoilers in Evenfall chapter 22. This is the scene as it’s currently edited: — “What the hell is this?” “If you read it, you’ll see it gives me clearance—” “To release Vega to his apartment, yeah, I went to kindergarten, too,” the guard said snidely. He waved the paper in the air and glowered at Boyd. “I mean, this makes no fucking sense. This isn’t protocol. We get orders through chain of command, not through agents prancing around with special clearance straight from the Marshal.” — What I really really omg you guys don’t understand! want to have the guard say in that last line is: — “We get orders through chain of command, not through agents prancing around with their special snowflake paperwork.” — He can be the internet-friendly guard, all hip to the lingo from nearly a decade prior in an alternate timeline, right? I mean, that’s pretty normal,...

Evenfall research: safe house examples, ch 37

Google streetview made the editing of the Monterrey arc of Evenfall about a thousand times easier and more accurate. This entry contains minor spoilers for around Evenfall chapter 37 so I’ve put it behind a cut. After researching the city to determine the neighborhood where Los  Perdidos live and Lo Más Chingon hangs out, it also became easier to determine which areas Boyd would have identified for safe houses. Below is an example of the screenshots I took in the editing of that arc, to remember a feel for the setting of the area and to use as inspiration when describing the houses and streets. I figured out Boyd’s whole route and popped in along it on streetview to see the different areas and determine whether I needed to make a record of it. I also left myself notes on the screenshots so I could recall aspects of why that screenshot was taken. These are only three of several screenshots taken at that time:...

Q&A: cracking OTP encryption?

On October 13, 2008 , in the course of an email chain with a reader B.L. (name redacted for privacy)  we received the following question. This post is placed behind a cut for minor spoilers through about Evenfall chapter 17. Note: the conversation we had back and forth following the initial question/answer might be interesting for people to read so I included the reader’s question and my answer, and then after that included our back and forth. It’s labeled B.L. for the reader and Ais for me (if that last part wouldn’t have been, you know, self-evident or anything ^_~). Since this conversation happened years ago I didn’t get express permission from the reader to repost this. I am hoping that it is acceptable to share this since there are no identifying details, but if you are the reader and wish for me to remove the conversation please let me know and I will do so immediately. Thank you! Q: How did Jeffrey break the OTP encryption on the second half of Thierry’s disk? A: Good question. Actually, if Thierry hadn’t subtly helped them out, it would have basically been impossible. Jeffrey didn’t mention it but what ended up happening was that as he dug further on the disc, he’d located some small, hidden,encrypted files that at first he’d thought to be throw away, nonsense files. They were each encrypted with a different, long key in a Vigenère square and they’d seemed to just be inconsequential, incomprehensible information to distract from the two larger, more heavily encrypted files. But when he deciphered all those he eventually figured out that mixed in with the mess was the private...

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