Tag Archives: get the damn book finished already!

#ROW80 Round 4 2016 Goals

Happy Round 4 ROWers! Dang, what happened to the year? It’s almost over!

Here are my goals. I am trying to keep things simple and relaxed, as I have a revision due to my editor on 12/1 and I suspect I might end up wanting to take a break. But I would like to do something, so I may choose a project and go slow with it for the rest of the round.

I am still feeling exhausted, and I seem to be in another fibro flare, so I need to concentrate on taking care of myself. Meditation, trying not to stress, and earlier bed times will hopefully help. 🙂

Here are my goals:

~Finish the Ever Touched revision.  I can do this. 🙂
~Stay on top of FYFB class. Taking a class through Monica Leonelle. It happens to be going on at the same time as my revision, but might as well go all in. It’s three months. Should be fun. 🙂
~Make a ruling on my next project and start prepping (contenders are Fireborn, which needs a revision, Survivor, which needs a rewrite, and Death Dancer, which needs some tweaking — and may be my next Turtleduck Press release.)
~Drink 1 glass of water 5x a week
~Exercise 2x a week
~Do All the Things related to anthology release (TBD — release is Nov 15th)
~Keep up on reviews (I’m on 4 ARC teams)
~Lose 5 pounds.
~Take more pictures: infrared and normal.
~Post-process infrared pics from camping trip
~Chocolate consumption report, as always!

Annnd that’s it. Good luck everyone!

 

Terrified

I’ve got to revise Ever Touched in 60 days. The first draft is technically not done, but I’m almost to the end. I see no point in struggling to finish — and eat into my 60 days — when the ending may end up changing anyway.

Today I said I’d start it. I’ve got my music ready, I’ve read the first few pages to familiarize myself with it (I haven’t read them in months), and I have an idea about how I want to work this.

Soooo what’s the problem?

Well, I’m glad you asked.

It’s something I call the “Rewrite Terrors.” Basically? It’s the fear of screwing up a book when rewriting or revising. F*cking it up good. And, as I only have 60 days, I can’t screw up anything. This is why I insisted on starting today. To give myself a month buffer. I was going to start Nov 1st, giving myself 30 days, but that seemed waaaaaaay too tight, especially with Thanksgiving and a guest coming in from out of town. I also set up my 2nd vacation the last week of the month so if I did get into trouble, I’d have more time to fix it.

I’ve done everything I can possibly do. Typically, I outline the book after finishing, but I am considering skipping that step. I may outline as I go, which will save time, I think. This way, if I do need that big picture view, I’ve got it.

This book is very, very different from the other two. It introduces a whole new race of people, and some interesting abilities. It may continue in the next book, if I can’t finish the story in this one. Maybe. I haven’t decided yet. But it also grapples with some interesting concepts. There’s science-y stuff in there, too, which I won’t reveal right now. All in all, I’m pretty happy with it. So why am I so goddamned scared?

Every single revision is scary and challenging, as I told my husband a few minutes ago. Every time it feels like it won’t come together, it won’t work, but it always does. Sometimes it requires more work, or more brainpower, or more fanagling, but it happens. I have to trust the process. I’ve revised *counts* 1 book 3 times, and 2 books once each, not including novellas and such. That’s to completion. One revision I abandoned because I’d changed everything so much that it required a rewrite (still pending). And I get scared each and every time. With the one I revised 3 times, I was super scared because it was the book of my heart and I needed it to be perfect. I still have another to do, but that’s another story.

Okay, time to chill and see if I can make this happen. Wish me luck.

Oh, and a hint as to the theme song of this book, which announced itself last week: The Sound of Silence, covered by Disturbed. I will be playing this a lot. If you haven’t checked this out, do so. It is absolutely amazing. Off to revise!

 

Talking to myself: Ending Ever Touched

I’m a bit hung up on a plot point in Ever Touched, so I’m gonna do my usual “talk to myself” thing to see if I can shake something loose.

As always, POSSIBLE SPOILERS for the end of Ever Touched. I may or may not use what I discover here. You’ve been warned.

Okay, so let’s get down to business. I need a way for the Hunters to find the three others who are hidden before they are [redacted].

How, with their implants turned off? I had a thought that maybe they could still sense each other, somehow, but that feels too easy.

What about the old-fashioned way? Using their knowledge of Julian and maybe some clues to find them? But what clues? Tari’s in a shack in the middle of nowhere. I haven’t figured out where the others are.

I’ll try talking to Brianna….

So, how are you going to accomplish this?

I’m not entirely sure. I think there has to be a link between the locations — where each woman is. Maybe places of significance, even if it doesn’t appear to be that way.

What if you are able to sense them without the implant working?

That’d be cool, but I can’t depend on that. He’s going to make sure they are off. And any psychic sense? I just don’t know. It seems risky. We’ve got a time limit.

Tari could possibly develop a sense without the implant, you know. She’s got a computer brain.

I’m still not sure.

Could Julian somehow show his hand and not realize it?

He’s an arrogant SOB. I don’t put it past him to somehow hint at where they are, thinking we’re too stupid to catch on.

And your situation is unstable….

Time’s running out for me, too.

But the visions…they could show you where they are, right?

Vaguely. It would give us a starting point. It will still be tough.

I think you guys could do it. You’ve been in impossible situations before.

Possible, yes. And hopefully before I have my, uh, problem flair up and uh, [redacted].

Right.

 
Okay, so I blame it on the day I’ve had. Of course it was the visions! That’s how this whole thing started, and hello, we’ll come full circle. It’s brilliant!

So I will probably use that or some variation of it. Now I need to figure out where the other two are and how these visions play out.

Lots to think about. 🙂

 

#ROW80 Check-in August 7th

It’s been a very rough week. My knee is no better, despite icing and anti-inflammatory meds and all that. I will most likely need to see the doctor. 😦

And I’ve been exhausted.

So progress was very minimal.

Here’s the rundown:

Ever Touched – 2,310 words written since last check-in, 98k in draft. Would love to hit 100k in the next few days. Implemented my new twist, and it’s going well so far.

Covenant – Nope, but thinking a lot.

Exercise – Nooooooooo.

Water – 4x this week.

Reviews – Finished a book and posted review today. Three more to go!

Secret project – Ideas are simmering.

Chocolate consumption: Chocolate birthday cake from my mom’s birthday party yesterday, WW sundae, WW ultimate chocolate sandwiches, WW caramel-chocolate thingies, chocolate chip cookies, chocolate zucchini bread, and these new chocolate pastry crisps from Aldi. Yummy!

#ROW80 Round 3 2016 Goals

Happy 4th of July to all Americans, and Happy Monday to the rest!

So, here we are at Round 3 of A Round of Words in 80 Days. I started a few years ago not really knowing how it would go, but it’s become a huge part of my writing life. 🙂 Accountability is HUGE for me, so it works well.

Without further adieu, here are my goals:

~Finish and submit TDP short story by July 15th deadline (I’m in the home stretch now on the rough draft, so I *should* be able to do this.)
~Do All the Things related to anthology release (TDB later)
~Restart Ever Touched and finish by end of round (32k left to go)
~Read-through of Fireborn
~Reinstate Covenant/8 minutes a day writing 2 days per week
~Drink one glass of water 5x per week
~Exercise 3x per week
~Experiment more with digital infrared
~Take more pictures!
~Keep up with review books (I’m on 4 ARC review teams)
~Complete 2 author interviews

I think that it is for now. 🙂 As always, I will also report on my chocolate consumption because c’mon, everyone loves that!

In the home stretch

I’ve been writing a lot since I last posted.  Something like 30k or so.  My drop-dead deadline is April 1st to get it to my Turtleduck Press editor.  And that is a polished, publication-ready manuscript…not the mess it is currently.

The first half of the book needs to match the second half.  I changed quite a few things.  And it needs some smoothing.  That’s the only problem with completely pantsing it (that is, writing without an outline) — you end up with a lot of things to rewrite or clean up.  But it works.  I haven’t written a book this fast in a long, long time.  And the kicker is that I haven’t written down any of my plans.  I’ve let things happen organically.  I’ve followed my muse wherever she’s led me, and I believe the finished product will be awesome for it.

I’ve had a few setbacks, though, like migraines and wrist issues.  I’ve been careful, but unfortunately, my left wrist is soooo sensitive.  So I’ve been taking care not to overdo it.  And if I do, I usually skip the next day’s writing session to compensate.

My original goal was to have the draft done by mid-month.  That’s not happening.  The draft is at 108k now, and I anticipate at least another 5k to wrap things up.  I’ll be cutting some things so I hope to have it end up around 100k when I’m done.

My new deadline is to finish the draft this weekend, but I’m not sure if I can do it.  I’ll try like hell, though, because that will give me more time to revise, edit, and polish.

I also have decided on book 2, both the name (Grave Touched) and the main “problem.”   So that’s good.  I’m not sure what I’ll be doing in between edits, but I’ve considered starting book 2.

I also wanted to get some work done on the Flamebound revision and the Survivor Rewrite.

Recently, I sat down and put all the Survivor files together into a master document.  Then I can just move stuff around, cut, add, etc.  It came in at around 300k and 800+ pages!  This will be a big job, but I want to try to get it traditionally published.  Same with Flamebound.  We’ll see how it all shakes out.

So. Back to writing.

Working hard or hardly working?

I guess it’s a matter of perspective.  I’ve made some great progress on Pirouette.  I’m up to page 107 (of around 281) but that’s a bit deceptive because I ripped out 3 scenes and replaced them with one new one.  I’ve had a few missteps, but I think I have it nailed.  What’s going to be a challenge is integrating the new stuff into the old stuff.  While watching my ever-growing wordcount as well.  I always tend to write long when drafting.  I still have quite a few scenes to cut, but I’m still nervous.

I also have been brainstorming a new idea which might end up being a future Turtleduck Press book.  That’s right.  The explanation is long and complicated, so I’ll just say this: I want to experiment with this and see where it goes.  I’m still looking to publish traditionally and that’s still the goal, but this could be something, too.  I believe in being open to all opportunities.  Anyhoo, it’s tentatively called Darklight, and all I know for sure is that there will be witches and doppelgangers.  I’m leaning towards horror/paranormal, but I really don’t know.  It’s still up in the air right now.

So, that’s what’s been going on.  I might poke at the Flamebound revision this weekend with my pokey stick of doom.  It’s occurred to me that June is only a few days away and it means that almost half the year has gone by.  Which means that I need to hustle.  And work faster while not sacrificing quality.  That’s the whole point of this.  To make these existing manuscripts better, not let them just languish. And hopefully submit them somewhere.

So, I will enjoy my three-day weekend and I’ll see how much I can get done.  Hopefully a lot.

Update – Still alive, mostly.

Um, yeah.  I’ve been working on Pirouette (up to page 88 of 281) and promoting both Life as a Moving Target and Without Wings.

I’ve had some issues with Pirouette.  I’ve made a very critical change to the book near the beginning, and while I believe it will make everything stronger, it kind of threw me for a loop.  Alisia and Lucien have to react to this and it’s not something they’ve encountered before.  Also, they are newly married, so things are a bit tricky right now.

I just finished the second new scene of 3 and I’m not sure I nailed it.  Lucien leaves the room at the end, and I didn’t plan that.  I asked my muse, “WTH? Why did he leave?” And my muse hasn’t answered my question yet.  I hope she will sometime soon.

I’m also a bit worried about the length.  Two words: Growing. Again.

In cheerier news, I have some new and not-so-new stuff happening.  I’ve decided my next project is to try to finish the revision of Flamebound and then begin the rewrite.  I have some ideas for that, and I might try to fit in some revision work here and there when I can.  Pirouette is still the priority though.

And lastly, I have an idea for a horror story.  I don’t even know what it wants to be – short story, novella, or novel.  It came fast and furious in the shower one night and I’m pretty excited.  Just don’t know when I’ll be working on it.  It doesn’t even have a title yet.

So that’s what’s shaking here in my world.  Stay tuned.

Without Wings is now available!

Without Wings, my second chapbook with Turtleduck Press, released yesterday!  It explores the dark side of love.

My friend and fellow indie author SM Reine wrote an awesome review!

Here’s an excerpt:

Her poetry has a way of painting pictures with negative space– that is to say, the things she withholds from the poems, rather than what she puts in them.  She dives right into the depths of emotion without hesitancy, and she has arranged the poems within to create a rhythm throughout the chapbook that flows as well as her poetry itself. ” 

You can read the review, as well as a short interview I did with SM Reine, here: http://www.smreine.com/2011/04/review-and-interview-without-wings-by.html  .

And to buy or for more information, visit us at http://www.turtleduckpress.com . I will be doing a giveaway very soon!

In other news, the Free-For-All ended up becoming Pirouette month. Which is just fine.  I’m on page 32.  It sounds like not a lot, but I’ve made some fantastic progress on the worldbuilding and the characterization.  I also have some ideas for the story as a whole.

Which leads me to my next point.  I realized that, while writing and rewriting novels may at times seem slow and inefficient, it also helps bring the entire thing into better focus.  For an example, in draft 2, I had Alisia totally unwilling to do something.  She fought with the people forcing her into it, but eventually figured she was overruled and went along with it.  That to me seemed rather shaky and Alisia is not one to go along with something she doesn’t want to do.  So, instead, in this draft, she’s going along with it, yeah, but to prove everyone wrong.  I think this is keeping with her personality more than in draft 2.

I also added some neat little touches to the world that will become important later on.

Alisia is more snarky now, if that’s even possible.  I’d wondered if I’d forgotten how to write her.  Nope, just took a little sabbatical.  She’s alive and kicking again!

So you see, I had to write 3 drafts to get to that destination.  I believe that nothing is ever wasted, even if I scrap something and start over.  It’s still there, in my head, and it can be revisited or refigured.  But I wouldn’t have gotten here without the original scene in draft 2.

Now my task is to keep the characterization consistant throughout the book.  Alisia and Lucien have to work for their happiness, and there needs to be obstacles.  And there are many.  So, that’s what’s next.

As for Alpha Female, I have a few changes I want to make, and the things I added to Pirouette will affect a few things in Alpha Female, so I think it would be best if I put it on the back burner for now.

I also was considering trying to write more poetry this month.  We’ll see how that goes.

Free-for-All month!

That’s right, ladies and gentlemen!  Since I can’t decide on one project to focus on and the muse is complaining, I’ve decided to do a free-for-all.  Whatever I feel like working on (besides the chapbook – that has to be done), I will work on.  As long as it’s a current unfinished project.  So basically Alpha Female and Pirouette are in the running.  Today I rewrote the first scene of Pirouette and got 606 words I didn’t hate.  That is progress.  😀

I’m not sure if this will work, and what the result will be, but I’ve got to get whatever I can get out of my muse.  Because that’s better than taking a month off, which I considered, but dang.  With just over 14k for the entire year so far, I didn’t want to do that.

But why torture myself?  If I want to work on Pirouette, then good.  Alpha Female?  Fine.  Something else?  Sure, as long as it’s unfinished (I highly doubt that, but gotta give myself room to move here).  It’s an experiment.  We’ll see how it goes.

The running tally:

Pirouette – 1 day, 606 words
Alpha Female – 0 days, 0 words

I’m crazy, I know.