#ROW80 Check-in 9/10/14 – Still busy and eating chocolate

Here I am, I have returned! I’ve been busy with camping trips and the Grave Touched Rewrite. And PT. And…vacation!

Yep, last week was my second vacation from work, 6 days of bliss. Hubby and I went camping (no surprise there!) where we had the most beautiful view of the lake from our campsite (the beach was literally steps away…and at night? The sunsets? I was in photographer’s heaven!) and where our little camper weathered a HUGE, crazy storm (winds 40 mph) and didn’t have a single leak! It was a lot of fun, a lot of excitement, and a lot of relaxation. Something I needed desperately.

The Grave Touched Rewrite is up to 89k (!). I’m still boggled by this. I did write a bit on vacation because, you know, deadlines and momentum. I also finished the edit of Changeling and sent that off.

So the plan is to try to finish Grave Touched by the end of the month, giving me three months to revise. Crossing fingers. I need a minimum of two months, so I can go over, but I really want that extra month!

Another thing I’ve been giving a lot of thought to is…what’s next? I definitely need a break from the Fey Touched world and a writing break in general, but after that…may work on Soulfire or one of my other revisions. It’s kinda up in the air right now, but I am pondering it.

I also have decided to reopen my darkroom. I’ve had it since 1999 and at one time, worked in there for three to four hours at least 3x a week. Once I got married to my ex, naturally my work output went way down, even though I continued to do photo shoots. When I came back home, I putzed with it a bit, but I was beginning to feel the effects of my age — in my back, particularly. The smell of the chemicals began to bother me when they never did. And the stamina required to stand for 3-4 hours at a time was just not there.

I’d basically given up on it. Whenever I’d think about reopening it, I always thought, well, I can’t stand, I’ll need to replace all my chemicals, I’ll need to set aside the time, blah blah blah. All excuses. My first love, and real passion, is traditional black and white photography. I probably sound like an old-timer, but that’s where my roots are (my grandfather was a darkroom photographer and I didn’t find out about it until I was in school studying it!) and where my soul feels most nourished. I love digital, but there’s nothing like b&w. I’m sorry, but to me, b&w is where the magic happens. I’ve missed it SO much that I regularly have dreams about it. I want to watch the picture emerge from a blank piece of photo paper. I want to spend time with each negative and figure out the best possible exposure time. I want to tone my images again. But most of all, I want to experiment with infrared photography, which is what led to all of this. I did some back in school and it was beautiful (everything glows, green plants and people’s skin is white, contrast is…out of this world) and I tried it again but didn’t have any good results. Tried a pseudo-infrared film but didn’t like it much, either. Then that perfect film was discontinued! Another thing I gave up on (it’s also wickedly hard to use, expose, and develop. But SO worth it). So anyway, a few weeks ago, I said, “Eff it. I’ve wanted to do this forever, obviously things have changed drastically, and I’ll need to put a ton of work into it (oh yeah, another thing — my darkroom area needs to be cleaned, organized, and thoroughly dusted — right now it’s a mess) but wait a sec. I don’t have to spend hours in there. I can buy chemicals little by little. I can still do everything. Just differently.” So, that’s what I’m doing. I’m going to give this a try. I’ve set a goal for myself. By my birthday in March, I want to have a significant portion of the work done to reopen the darkroom. I won’t buy chemicals until I’m ready to start and I’ll have time to get my 35mm automatic camera fixed (for infrared, it’s manual all the way — it’s been decades since I’ve used a manual camera! Looking forward to it!). I also will have enough time to attack it at my own pace.

Time is slipping by. This year is almost over, and it has flown by. I don’t want to go through the rest of my life wondering what beautiful images I could have made if only I’d taken the time to try darkroom again. I miss it, and it needs to be a part of my life again.

So…there’s that.

Okay, stats!

Words rewritten since last check-in: 7,650 (total so far: 35,561 words and I made my second goal!)
Words remaining: 0
What’s happening: The MCs are doing a ritual to ward off possessions
What’s next: MC is going to be very…lost
Eye report: Not too bad, even with a storm today
Back report: A bit better, but progress has been very slow
Chocolate consumption since last check-in: Well…a whole lotta chocolate. Too much to list. ;)

#ROW80 Check-in 8/24/14 – I’m baaack

I have been so busy between camping trips and physical therapy. I’ve finally been able to do a proper check-in post for ROW80.

I’ve been writing like a fiend. I’m up to 77k on Grave Touched, almost 2/3 done! I can’t even believe it. I’m still on track to finish by my deadline (Jan 1st of next year).

I also wrote part 1 of a serial short story called Changeling, about a 17-year-old girl who accidently enters a portal to Faerie and discovers she’s their long-lost princess.

Stats!

Words rewritten: 10,761 words (total: 27,911 words! Made my new goal of 20k!)
Words remaining: 2,089 words*
What’s happening: Burials (sniff)
What’s next: A character is about to make a huge sacrifice for her people
Eye report: Not bad today
Back report: Hurts like hell today :(
Chocolate consumption since last check-in: Oh God, a ton. WW snacks, Chocolate zucchini bread, ice cream, Twix bars (my favorite)…yeah. Quite a lot.

*Revising my rewriting goal to 30k now.

Year of No Fear – 2014 Manifesto – July Progress Report

This one’s going to be a bit sparse. I’ve been working on the Grave Touched Revision like a fiend.

In July:

~Revision: Wrote 16k on Grave Touched
~Diet: Have been working toward eating healthier, watching my dinner choices when we go out to eat, which has been a problem for years. I also have been adding 1 low-cal meal a week to our dinners at home.
~Poetry: Ah, have been thinking about it again. Need to find the time to write some!
~Gratitude: Been thinking of 3 things daily most of the time, just can’t keep up with the journal. May switch to monthly posts instead of daily.

And that’s really it. I hope to get more done as we go.

#ROW80 Check-in 8/6/14 – Movin’ and groovin’

Under Her Protection ebookFirst up: “Under Her Protection: Stories of Women to the Rescue,” our new Turtleduck Press anthology, released on August 1st on all platforms. Basically, we turned the “damsel in distress” trope inside out and had the women save the men. Wicked fun to write. All of the stories are awesome. Mine is “Reaper Girl,” which I’ve discussed at great length here. Check it out. Proceeds go to UNICEF, as always.  You can find out more and purchase it here. /shameless plug

Now on to the ROW80 check-in stuffs. Been moving pretty well on Grave Touched. I’m up to 68k. I’ve had to backtrack a few times to incorporate some new stuff I wanted to add.  New ideas, as always! So I’ve been doing that for the past few days. I feel pretty good about how it’s going. The ending will most likely stay pretty much the same. It’s just getting there using a different route.

Stats!

Words rewritten: 3,270 words (total: 17,150 words!!)
Words remaining: 2,850 words
What’s happening: One MC is trying to save her mate.
What’s next: Burial. *sniff*
Eye report: Not too bad.
Back report: The same.
Chocolate consumption since the last check-in (gotta add that because my mom read the last one and thought I meant my chocolate consumption for THAT DAY. No way, Mom!) : WW snacks mostly. We’re on to lemon zucchini bread now, by my request. Maybe I should change it to “Lemon Zucchini Bread Consumption”? ;) Nah, chocolate is better.

#ROW80 Check-in 8/3/14 – Rocking and Rolling

Wow things have been super crazy with Grave Touched, but a good crazy indeed.

I’ve implemented the changes I was talking about at the last check-in, and it’s going very smoothly. I also had another twist come to me as I was writing today, so that’s always good!

Tomorrow I start physical therapy on my lower back. Should be interesting.

Well, without further ado, here are my stats!

Words rewritten: 6,639 (total of 13,880 words so far!!)
Words remaining: ~0
Pages edited: around 10, maybe more!
What’s happening: Pain and suffering. :(
What’s next: A burial. :(
Eye report: Okay. Today it’s been twinge-y.
Back report: Surprisingly not too bad.
Chocolate consumption: Oh God. Homemade chocolate-chocolate chip zucchini bread, chocolate zucchini brownies, Twix bars, raspberry/dark chocolate ice cream bar, WW snacks (several), chocolate-chocolate chip cookie at lunch today. Lots of chocolate! Most of it WW friendly.

I’m going to do away with the editing goal for now. Most — if not all — of what I’m doing is straight rewriting. If/when I start editing again, I’d add it back in.

I’m also raising my rewrite goal to 20k new words. ;)

Cover Reveal and Announcement: Under Her Protection and other miscellany

Under Her Protection ebookIt’s time for another Turtleduck Press anthology, and this time we’ve cooked up something really, really cool.  It’s called “Under Her Protection: Stories of Women to the Rescue” and it twists the damsel in distress trope inside out.  What if the men needed saving, and the women were the ones to do it?  What if romance blossomed between them while on their respective journeys?

In “Guardian,” by KD Sarge, what if the warrior who saves the scholar is not what she seems?

In my story, “Reaper Girl,” what if a grim reaper accidently reaps the soul of a man who’s very much alive?

In Siri Paulson’s “The Raja and the Madman,” what if a maidservant befriends the madman in the tower?

In Kit Campbell’s “Drifting,” what if a newly-graduated woman, looking for purpose in her life, answers the plea of a Faerie kingdom and finds herself at the center of a family legend?

Check it out — it releases August 1st on all platforms.  And, as always, proceeds will be donated to UNICEF, as always.

 
Annnd for what’s new in Erin land, well…I’ve been working like a crazy woman on Grave Touched.  I think this is the toughest book I’ve ever tried to rewrite.  The whole second half needs to be reworked, and I’ve forgotten something really important so I need to backtrack, again.  As for the plot, I’ve decided to go with some new ideas, as the ones in the previous draft weren’t working too well.  But we’ll see.  Maybe I’m wrong.

I’m also enjoying the hell out of the TV shows Dexter and Hannibal.  For those who don’t know, Dexter is a crime show about a guy who works for the police as a blood-splatter analyst (talk about a neat job!) and secretly kills bad people in his spare time.  There’s a very specific reason why he does it, and it gets my writer-brain all atwitter with ideas.  And deep thoughts.  And stuff.  Hannibal is about the backstory of Hannibal Lector, from when he was a psychiatrist assisting the FBI with various murder cases.  And then there’s Will Graham, the poor soul brought on to assist, too, but who falls too far down the rabbit hole.  I LOVE these shows.  It’s been awhile since I’ve been full-blown obsessed with any TV shows, so this is big for me. Weekends are usually my binge-watching times.

Hubby and I have gone camping once so far this summer in our new pop-up camper and it’s been so much fun.  We have another weekend trip planned in August, a week-long trip in September, and possibly another weekend one the weekend of Halloween.  Let the good times roll!

I am starting to get antsy to write other things, as usual, and it’s no surprise.  I have a new direction for Flamebound and a series to develop about empaths and ley lines.  But Grave Touched needs its second half, and I do have a deadline to meet.  Must resist the pull of the shiny.  Must resist…..

So that’s about it for now.  See you on the flip side.

 

#ROW80 Check-in 7/23/14 – Lots of wordz

I missed both Sunday’s and last Wednesday’s check-ins because I was swamped with preparing for camping and then actually camping. It was wonderful, and the pop-up trailer we bought was a dream. We’re going to be camping in August (a weekend), September (week), and possibly even October, which will be a first for us.

Sooooo I’m finally getting back into the swing. I’ve managed around 1k a day for the past few days, and I’m very close to the halfway mark on Grave Touched. I’m having a slight crisis of faith with my outline. I’m considering veering in a totally different direction and while I think it’s a good thing, I’m not sure what it’ll do to the second half of the book. I think I can still fit certain things in (like the climax, for an example) but I think others may need to be shuffled. For now, I’m writing it as it comes. I’ll deal with the other stuff after I’ve finished this draft.

This will be my third. Hopefully last.

Stats!

Words rewritten since last check-in: 7,241 words (!!!!!)
Words remaining: 2,759 words (!!!)
Pages edited: 0 (no editing needed yet)
What’s happening: [Redacted] is taking over. Yikes.
What’s next: Bad things. Very bad things.
Eye report: Horrendous for the past two days. :( I think there’s a storm coming.
Back report: Not too bad. Twinge-y.
Chocolate consumption (everyone’s favorite :D ): A whole lotta chocolate, too much to list. Including s’mores, 3 Musketeers bars, Twix bar, WW snacks…today I get to sample some chocolate cake (and 2 other varieties) that were made by one of our Mediterranean customers. Should be interesting. (This is the benefit of working in foodservice. SAMPLES YAY).