Tag Archives: Life as a Moving Target

My poetry chapbook about living with fibromyalgia and intractable vertigo. Currently looking for a publisher.

NaNoRevMo day 1

I’ll admit it: most of today was spent reading (and finishing) Dreamfever by Karen Marie Moning.  If you haven’t read her Fever series, I implore you to do it NOW.  She’s that good.  So good that I put everything on hold to finish it in less than 2 days.

But I did manage to work on the Pirouette notecards.  I have some new ideas.  Just from writing down the conflicts and why the scene matters, which is an HTRYN thing.  I’m jumping around alot in the methods, sort of freeform, more or less to see what really helps really fast.  Might seem counterintuitive, especially to HTRYN folks, but so far it’s working.  Somehow forcing yourself to pick apart each scene brings everything that’s working — and not working — into focus.  I also have a few scenes that need to be changed due to decisions I made either mid-draft or after.  With the notecards, I’ve got all the information right there.

On the Alpha Female front, I’m a bit stuck.  I have this one plot issue that needs to be figured out before I can even consider moving on.  Been thinking about it but nada from the muse. 

So, score is as follows:

Pirouette = 1, Alpha Female = 0 Poetry= 1*

*Because I had an inkling of a good first line for a poem.  Not sure which chapbook it belongs to yet.

Also, the Turtleduck Press teaser site (which has some very cool things on it) is LIVE! Check it out! http://www.turtleduckpress.com .

Alpha Female is done.

I officially finished it Thursday, and it came in at 27k, just 2k over what I needed.  It is now with a trusted beta reader, who’ll give me the lowdown on what’s working and what’s not working, and I’ll have less than 2 weeks to do a revision plus a 5-page synopsis.

I must be crazy.

Actually, while I’m still actively trying to make that deadline, it’s not a huge thing.  I mainly wanted to see if I was capable of producing something on a deadline.  And I pretty much did, for the most part.  It’s going to depend on what my beta reader says, because I’ve lost all objectivity.  So, I gotta wait for that.

Pirouette is next up, particularly finishing the notecards and rewriting the first few scenes.  Beyond that, it’s just tearing through the manuscript much how I did with Alpha Female, except on a bigger scale.  I’m worried that I won’t nail it, and I simultaneously believe that I can.  Which will win out?  I has no clue.

The website is almost finished — at least the writing section, anyway.  That needs to be done before Life as a Moving Target launches on December 1st.  I have a few things planned for that so stay tuned.

Life as a Moving Target is almost ready to go on sale.  I have a second proof ordered and if it’s good, then it’ll go on sale with the other Turtleduck books on Dec. 1st.  It’s so exciting, seeing it in print, something I never thought would come true.  I’ve gotten some wonderful support and encouragement on it so far, and that’s so important as the subject is so personal to me.  All in all, I believe this is going to work out nicely.

It’s after midnight as I type this, but I still consider it Oct. 16th until I wake up in the morning.  It’s a weird quirk of mine.  So….today was not only Sweetest Day, but it was the 1-year anniversary of the day the family drama began, and my life, as I knew it, changed irrevocably.  The person who caused it still remains out of my life, although I still think about this person and what this person did almost daily.  It’s not enough to say that I’m hurt, or angry.  I’m livid.  Still a bit numb, even after all this time.  My world hasn’t quite gotten back on track and I’m still feeling pretty dark and empty inside.

I don’t even know what to say.  Except there are poems in this.  They’ve been whispering in my ears for months,waiting patiently for me to put them to paper.

In other news, I’m now in a cast because my foot doc feels that immobilization of the joint might do the trick.  I’ve never been in a cast before, so it’s been a real interesting — and frustrating — experience.  Exhausting, too.  I went downstairs to my office for the first time in 4 days and was terrified the entire trip up and down.  I did it twice today, and I feel more stable.  But dang, it’s tiring. Especially going up.

I hope this is it.

Also, I got hit with a doozy of a plotbunny.  I’m not even going to speak of it, because evey time I even think about it, it grows.  Halloween is perfect timing, but I’m standing firm on my no new projects decision for the rest of the year.  It’s going to have to wait, and so will my mini-Nano.  There’s always next year, right?

So that’s what’s happening here.  I’m so excited about everything.  I can hardly stand it. 🙂

Chapbook news.

I’m very happy to say that I received my proof copy of Life as a Moving Target yesterday and it is beautiful!  I’m so excited!  I have a few tweaks to finish up, but it’s pretty much done.  It will release through Turtleduck Press on Dec. 1st. Here’s a little preview: https://www.createspace.com/3486326 .

What is Turtleduck Press?  Well, we’re a group of writers who endeavor to publish quality fiction that skirts the edges of the standard genres.  But, you ask, what does that mean?  Well, our works don’t necessarily fit the standard conventions.  My poetry doesn’t — it’s poetry, and it’s in a niche market.   That kind of thing.  I’m so excited about this I can barely stand it!

I will also be starting on another chapbook of poetry tentatively called Broken World, Mad Dreams.  It explores the idea of family and betrayal, love and pain.  It’s funny, but I’ve wanted to start on it since last year, but the timing wasn’t quite right.  Well, now that I have a zillion things happening, I get murmurings of verse and ideas and stanzas from my muse.  Usually when I can’t write any of it down.  So, I might need to start getting these things down soon before they disappear.

In other news, Alpha Female is pretty much done.  I need an ending, but that’s it.  It’s also the first project that came close to its intended wordcount.  26k of 25k.  How about that?  So I have to cut some, add some, and edit the hell out of it.  Hopefully before Nov. 1st.  It’s going to be tight, but that’s my goal.  It’s beenan interesting process.  Rewriting it a total of three times and editing at the same time.  Kind of crazy.  But, it might just work!

So that’s what’s happening in ny crazy world.  Hopefully things calm down soon and I can breathe.

Stuck and then unstuck.

I spent 2 days being stuck on Alpha Female.  I knew what would happen in the climax, but not how to get from where I was to that.  I needed more to happen before that.  And I’m still unsure of when the physical intimacy between Natasha and Luke is going to take place.

But…..I got 1,167 words and I’m almost to 18k, the point where I was when I restarted.  I estimate I’ll need another week to finish, putting me at mid-September and giving me two extra weeks to revise.  It has to go out to beta readers first, though.

How did I get unstuck?  That’s a damn good question.  I thought about it alot.  I played out different scenarios in my head.  I let my subconscious mull it over.  But I was in the shower when it came together.  The shower is the best place for getting ideas.  At least for me.

I was considering doing some freewriting if nothing tore loose.  Since I’m on a tight deadline, I couldn’t afford to lose another day.  Luckily, I wrote over 2k and then got stuck, and today I wrote over quota (800 words) so I’m about where I should be. 

This is the dark side of pantsing.  While it’s fantastic when it works, it can be really difficult when it doesn’t.  But I’ve learned over time to not force it.  To let it percolate and gel and come together inside my head.  Some of it I can see in my head or hear like overheard conversation.  I just had to wait it out.  And I was rewarded.

If I hadn’t, then I would have started poking at it.  But luckily, it never got to that point.  Crisis averted.

I’m still a bit foggy on a few things, but I know enough to move forward.

On the website front (yeah, I’m redesigning it yet again to coincide with the launch of Life as a Moving Target), I’m looking at some new options that will make life a bit easier for me.  I’m self-taught and my skills are basically obsolete.  So it’s been fun trying to get my head around newer ideas.  But it is coming along.

Also took some pictures the other day at a lake.  First time in I don’t know how long.  I’m proud of myself.  Naturally, it all came back, and I used my black&white mode, too (even though generally I shoot true b&w — that is, film) and I think I might have a few contenders for the cover for the chapbook.  I would like to use one of my own pictures if possible.

So things are coming along, if slowly.  I’ve been incredibly tired lately, which I suspect is the fibromyalgia, and that’s been a bit of a problem.  But I persevere.  Hopefully I’ll have more things to share soon.

10k to go.

I’m up to 15k on Alpha Female and I fear that I’m stuck again (I’m also talking in Natasha’s voice…by sheer accident…oops).  I wrote 1,001 words today but it was like pulling teeth.  I think it took me 2 to 3 sessions spread over 5 hours.  Ye Gods.  I admit that I’m a bit lost on the transition from before the hunt to beginning the hunt, and I wonder if I even need it at all.  For now, it stays.  I’ll make a ruling once I start revising.

Sooooooo I know basically what happens next.  Luke and Natasha bond some more, discuss her becoming Lupi.  They talk about Meaningful Things, possibly even Natasha’s deceased nashan (husband).  They may get intimate, I’m not sure.  But then I know where to go from there.  It’s just the execution.

I’ve got 10k more to finish this.  I suspect I might go over, but hopefully not by much.

As for other things, I just finished edits on Life as a Moving Target.  It’s been approved by the others, so now I need to figure out formatting and find a cover.  I want to use one of my own pictures for that.  I actually had a concept come to me recently but it would require a really complex image.  Not sure yet if I want to go that way.

On Pirouette: unfortunately I haven’t had much extra time to work on the plotcards.  I’ll try to get some don this week.  I feel like I’m losing touch with it, and that’s not good.

The song stuck in my head today is “Lost in Life” by Sirenia.

Fragmented.

Alot has been going on.  First, hubby and I are finally moving.  It’s been exciting and tiring.  This week is our official “move week” but we actually started two weeks early.  So the work has been pretty light.  But alas, I’m still friggin tired.  I am on vacay this week from work with the exception of Wednesday so that’s been nice.

The other thing is my ankle.  I have a bone fragment in my ankle joint, and almost needed surgery.  Oddly enough, the pain isn’t where the fragment is, but where the ligaments and tendons are.  It has to do with my ultra-high arches.  Yay. So my foot doc gave me a shot and some new meds.  I see him in 3 weeks to assess.  For quite awhile I was hobbling around (with a cane no less!) but this week it’s been feeling much, much better.  Except when I’m not wearing my brace.  Then I feel it.  It’s still a bit swollen, and when the meds wear off I can tell, but it’s far better than struggling to walk.  Hopefully, it’ll heal and get back to normal again.  I hate not being able to walk properly.

Third, the Pirouette notetaking is almost done, which means I can start on the notecarding and re-reading the manuscript.  *rubs hands together* I can’t wait to dive in and make this book better.  I had an idea of some backstory hit me in the shower, and I have  few ideas for Alisia and Lucien’s scenes.  I also wrote another query letter draft just for shits and giggles.  It brought to light an element that I should ramp up and make even darker.  I love the way my mind works sometimes.

Broken is also coming along.  I was a bit stuck for a bit, but today some things came to me.  So that’s good.  Might try to write a bit soon.  I’m definitely feeling odd not writing much.  And I don’t like that feeling.

Lastly, I have some news.  There’s a possibility I might be self-publishing Life as a Moving Target, my poetry chapbook.  Nothing is final yet and I hate to jinx it, but it’s very exciting to me because I’ve wanted to get it published since I wrote it back in 2004.  Want to get the word out about fibromyalgia and vertigo.  And it’s such a niche market that I’m not surprised no one’s wanted to publish it.  Self-pubbing has been on my mind for quite some time, and I’ve been seriously considering it.  So stay tuned.

2009 in review and 2010 goals

This year hasn’t been the best as far as emotional stuff is concerned.  The family drama that started in mid-October is still ongoing, and kind of derailed me a bit.  But, I persevere!

As far as productivity goes, I did very well.  I started and finished Pirouette’s five One-Pass Revision, got it out to critters, and have been rewriting the draft, implementing suggestions, cutting, adding, and hopefully making it better.  I’m almost halfway through the draft.  I hope to be done with it early next year.

It’s taken me longer than anticipated, which is okay, but sort of screwed up my schedule.  But it is really okay, b/c I’ll take however long it takes to make it submission-worthy.  As such, no query letters were sent.  I’ve decided to wait till the draft is done and critted.  The story, while essentially the same, has been morphing in interesting ways.  Hopefully in good ways.

Flamebound is on its way towards being totally revised, using Holly Lisle’s How to Revise Your Novel class.  I have high hopes for this.  I want to get Flamebound revised, critted, and submitted somewhere next year.  I can do this.

I planned on participating in Nanowrimo and writing a new novel.  Unfortunately, life had different plans.  Two days in I ended up quitting.  The book was to be Soulfire.  I’ve come to the conclusion that the timing just wasn’t right on this one.

I finished Survivor, which was a HUGE goal.   I hope to rewrite it in the next few years (depending on if I sell something, etc).

I don’t think I broke 100k on new words, but that, too, is okay.  Because I said I’d do some serious editing and finishing unfinished projects, which I accomplished.

I submitted my poetry chapbook, Life as a Moving Target, to a publisher.  Did not bite, but that’s okay.  I might try again next year.

For next year, I have a few more projects besides Pirouette the Third and Flamebound.  I have Unforgiven, which is a personal challenge to myself for various reasons.  I also have MindBound, the next book set in the Flamebound world.  And I’m seriously considering pulling out Darkweaver and starting work on it.  And then there’s Pirouette book 2 (Blood Dance). Ambitious, I know, but want to aim high.

I think the biggest goal for 2010 is to get something submitted somewhere, be it Flamebound, Pirouette the Third, or something else entirely.  I need to start moving forward with my goal of getting published.  I’ve been working like a madwoman, but I need to focus on that more.  So, hopefully I can do something about that next year.

So, to all, Happy New Year (a few days early!) and reach for the stars.

Pirouette Revision, take 2.

I’m up to 89 pages (of 482) and it is going well.  I’m feeling pretty good about this.  I hope to finish (or be close to finishing) by the end of the month.  Then it’s type-in time.

I’m confident that the changes I’ll be making will make it even better.  And one more step closer to the submitting process.

I also submitted Life as a Moving Target. Wish me luck.  Am considering putting together another chapbook for another publisher.  I need 60 pages minimum and the deadline is in mid-March.  It would be cool to have my stuff out there again.  It’s been too long.

Living poetry

For the past few days, I’ve been digging through my chapbook manuscript, Life as a Moving Target.  I wrote it 5 years ago (??!) after being diagnosed with fibromyalgia and intractable vertigo.  Originally, it was just to cope with the changes in my life, but it grew beyond that.  So I decided to try to write a chapbook.  I ended up with about 40 pages.

Over time, I tried to get it published, but no luck so far.  That’s why I’ve decided to renew my efforts.  I want to educate people about fibro and intractable vertigo.  I’ve been made fun of, judged, and treated unfairly because of my health.  Most of it is simply ignorance.  And that was understandable 6 years ago.  Now, with medication out and commercials and stuff, people should be more aware.  But I still encounter ignorance, and it stings.

I feel that the poems in the chapbook are some of my very best.  They’re also a bit different from my other work.  They are grittier, more in-your-face.  I tell it like it is.  I think that suits the subject matter, because fibro and vertigo aren’t exactly light subjects.

So I hope to find a publisher for it. 

I wrote two poems late last year for the chapbook, and I noticed a difference in the feel.  Like, I’d changed.  And it’s true — I’ve made peace with it, am happier than I’ve ever been, and I’m almost pain-free.  I’d made some changes in my life, all for the better, and it has really helped.  I did include them, because they are pretty good.  But it’s interesting to note the difference.

And I’ve found that I really can’t go back and find my voice from when I wrote the bulk of the manuscript.  It’s like I’ve changed so much that my voice changed, too.  And that’s okay.

I also noticed, when editing the manuscript, I used alot of the techniques I use with writing.  Parts needed to be rewritten, and I found it tough to get back into the poetry mode.  It’s been years, folks, years.  I remember when I was younger, all I did was write poetry.  Got alot published, too.  But as fiction took hold of me, I began to write poetry less and less.  I did write a good amount of poems around the time I broke up with my ex-spouse, again as a way to cope, but that’s the last “poetry binge” I’ve been on.  Kind of sad, really, how life changes and your goals change. 

I thought about trying to get back into it, and I think I will, gradually.  I don’t want to put pressure on myself — I’m already a perfectionist — but I’d like to give it a shot.  Like, devote a few hours a week to it or something.  I have another chapbook, Love Letters, that I never did finish.

So, viva la poetry.  It’s time.

295 pages down.

I’m about 60% finished with the revision.  I’ve been having some crisis of faith lately.  Like, how am I really doing?  Is it any better, or, God forbid, is it worse?  And what about the scenes I cut?  The scenes I’ve revised and rewritten look pretty good, so I’m not as concerned about that.  But, it still niggles at me.

Been doing ALOT of research on agents.  I have 7 so far on my list, and I’m reading 3 agent blogs to stay on top of things.  Granted, Pirouette might not be ready for a while yet, but I want to be prepared so I can get it out the door as soon as possible after it’s finished.  I just hope that I can make this happen.  I’m willing to work my patootie off.  I’ve spent the past 18 days working on the revision, every day except one, and on some days, that’s all I do when I come home from work.  But that’s okay.  I want this, and it will be worth it.

Another project I’d like to get out the door is Life as a Moving Target, my poetry chapbook.  There are a few contests with late March deadlines.  In February I’ll take a look at the manuscript and do edits, and add in the 2 poems I wrote late last year, and send it off. 

I also just started my first b&w project (photography) in probably forever.  Even used my older automatic film camera.  I’m very old school about it sometimes.  There’s nothing like darkroom, and actually shooting on film.  I love digital, but that to me comes first.

And along with that is my 2009 website revamp.  To include a writing website off the main one.  I think it’s time I expand it more.  In preparation for the agent hunt and all that.  😉