Tag Archives: Survivor

The other magnum opus, in progress for 2 years. Psychological horror at its finest.

#ROW80 Check-in 9/16/15

I’m still here, and I’ve been copyediting. I finished freelance project #2 on Monday and turned it in and have started back up on Burning Bright, KD Sarge’s awesome fantasy novel.

I did write about 600 words on Covenant recently.

And that is really it. I’ve been thinking about future projects, and I’m considering starting Survivor for NanoWriMo (unless I have an editing job or two, then it’s a no) because while I’ve done enough prep work and thinking, I realize that I’ll need to just jump in and do it. I haven’t really had an opportunity on a Sunday lately. But a solid 30k would be fantastic (I can no longer do 50k due to my wrists, but 30k is doable).

Rewrites are a bit tricky for me and my muse. We’re afraid to screw it up, so the beginning feels momentous. With an older project, Pirouette, which I rewrote a total of 4 times, each rewrite had accumulated more weight — this one was going to be The One. No, this one. Or this one. I can’t screw this up… I remember the fourth time  — I wasn’t even ready yet, but it was weighing on me so one day I wrote 200 words. And then I felt a bit better, because I’d started the damn thing. And then I added a few hundred more. The more I wrote, the better I felt. I still feel #4 is my strongest yet. I am planning another rewrite, but I wonder if maybe all it needs is an intense revision. It’s been 5 years since I set it aside. I was too close to it and I was losing the love. I’m considering making it a 2016 project, depending on how Survivor goes.

Sooooo this beginning to Survivor is huge, but I have to remember: sometimes it’s not the words, because they can be changed, but the physical act of beginning again that counts. We shall see.

Annd that’s really about it for me.

Chocolate consumption: Not as much as I’d like! I just had a WW sundae so that helps. 🙂

#ROW80 Check-in 3/8/15

I’ve been busy proofreading and haven’t had the time to do a proper ROW80 post, so please forgive me. I did finish the proofreading, but I was a few days late. I’m having some stress/eye pain issues that have made it tough to concentrate. My editor was okay with it (I’d worried about that). But now it’s done and I can breathe again.

My #1 goal is to RELAX. So I haven’t done anything writing-wise. It seems my brain and body need a break after intense writing/editing/deadlines and the last thing I want to do is stress myself out too much. So yesterday was a “free” day. I worked on Grave Touched’s cover because I need to give myself enough time to get it done properly (first time doing a cover! Wish me luck!) and I binge watched Game of Thrones. I also ran a backup, which I promised myself I’d do once the book was sent off to my editor. (I’m very OCD about my backups).

So…what is on the horizon?

~Today I will poke a bit at Survivor. I was rewriting the first chapter when I started the edits on Grave Touched, and I don’t want that to be left hanging.

~Some point soon, I will get back to Fireborn and write those 661 words I need to make my goal before the end of this round.

~Ever Touched plotting

~Poetry. I have several poem drafts to weed through, and some old ones I discovered by accident, so that should be fun. (And maybe some more #badpoetry. *winks.*)

As for when, just gonna say soon. I have a really hard time taking breaks (as much as I need them) because my brain is ALWAYS spinning with ideas and I feel a desperate need to get them down. And, I’m just used to writing every day. The last day I wrote anything was January 27th. Yikes! Two months ago. Granted, I was editing and proofreading, but that doesn’t count. My Inner Slave Driver has to relax. *rolls eyes*

So that’s what’s going on. I hope to make some progress, even a bit, before the end of the round.

Also, chocolate consumption: through the roof. Stress = stress eating. Enough said.

#ROW80 Check-in 2/22/15 – Finis

Yep, you read that right! Just a few minutes ago, I finished the Grave Touched revision! It will need another pass for proofreading and such, but I will make my March 1st deadline. I’m ecstatic!

The plan for today is to rest. I’ll start the final pass on Monday. After Grave Touched is turned in, I will resume Survivor on Sundays and Fireborn. And maybe play with some poetry. And start the cover for Grave Touched! I’m doing it myself this time, and I need enough time to get it right! I already have the stock photo purchased and the special fonts my wonderful friend SM Reine used for Fey Touched.

And now for the stats!

Pages revised: 261
Pages remaining: big, fat goose egg!
Scenes finished: 129
Scenes remaining: big, fat goose egg!
What’s happening: A lovely happily ever after for my Hunters.
What’s next: Proofreading! Fireborn! Survivor! Cover creation!
Eye report: Terrible this morning, but a bit better now. I’m also a bit sick, so that’s a factor.
Back report: Holding up okay after walking around the Sea Life Exhibit yesterday.
Chocolate consumption since last check-in: Ye Gods. Chocolate-caramel thingies, Twix bars, WW mini sundaes, Samoas (my favorite Girl Scout cookie), chocolate/mint pudding.

Annnnnd that’s it!

#ROW80 Check-in 1/18/15

Here we are for another check-in.  I’m making slow progress on Fireborn.  It’s not moving as fast as I want it to, but it’s moving and that’s the important part.  Up to almost 6k.

On the Survivor front, I did poke at Survivor last Sunday and Monday, which was good.  I read the first 3 chapters and the revised first scene I wrote back in 2007ish, I believe.  I think this is my longest-running book ever.  The read through kind of depressed me because it was so bad.  Granted, the first 9 chapters or so were written in 2004, and the rest was written in 2007 and 2009, respectively.  I’m assuming those parts are better, but it was just painful to read.  So today I’m going to see what I can do besides mope. 😦

(For context, I started writing seriously in 2001 but didn’t really get into it until 2003.  I began Survivor in 2004 for a writing class, and wrote it on Sundays, while I worked on other projects on the other days.  I stopped writing it in 2005 to work on my second longest-running book, Pirouette, and didn’t pick Survivor up again till 2007, when I took a short hiatus from Pirouette. Started working on Pirouette’s second draft until 2008-2009, when I finally finished Survivor.  I looked at it briefly a few years ago when I was considering working on it again and made a master file with every single plot thread in one document.  I also made some decisions on what plot lines to cut.  There are just too many.  So…that’s where I’m at.)

Okay, return of the stats!

Project: Fireborn
Words written: 5,872 words
Words remaining: 9,128 words
What’s happening: Leliel and Rick are investigating stuffs
What’s next: Another murder/suicide

Project: Survivor
Work done to date: Read through first three chapters and alternate first scene

Feeling: Depressed and stressed.
Eye report: Horrendous for the past 2 days, but not bad at the moment
Back report: Twinge-y
Chocolate consumption: Surprisingly, not a whole lot.  Although I can’t resist my Oreo balls or the WW chocolate/caramel thingies.  Or M&Ms. *shifty look*

#ROW80 Check-in 1/11/15

Here we are with another check-in.  I am happy to report that I accomplished a few of my goals!

~Started Fireborn.  Up to 2,582 words currently.
~May have an actual plot for Ever Touched, but I’m still noodling.
~Nothing on Survivor yet.  Hopefully I can get to that sometime today.

So, since I started Fireborn, I’m adding a new goal.  I’d like to have at least 15k written before the end of the month.

That’s about it, short and sweet!


So I definitely decided to write a novella (and maybe more!) in the Reaper Girl universe. It’s called Fireborn, and it takes place after the events of Reaper Girl, and continues Rick and Leliel’s adventures.  Leliel discovers she has some interesting abilities, which not only get her into trouble, but enable her to help other people.

So there are these young men killing themselves by self-immolation.  It’s horrifying, but there’s something about it that Leliel thinks is unusual.  She determines that it isn’t suicide, but murder.

Yeah, so that’s the premise.  I’ve already written almost 2k on it and I’m having a blast.  I just love Leliel.  She is such a fun character.  Rick is cool, too.

I hope to finish the draft by the end of the month.  And revise/edit it and release it ASAP.  And I’m brainstorming ideas for more novellas.

If by some chance you haven’t read Under Her Protection (which is where Reaper Girl can be found — check it out here.  There’s four awesome stories in it about some very special women who rescue men.  It was a blast to write!

Future projects include Ever Touched (Fey Touched book #3, as soon as I can settle on a premise) and Survivor. Stay tuned.


#ROW80 Round 1 2015 Goals

Here we are again with A Round of Words in 80 days, or ROW80 as we call it.  I participated in 3 of 4 rounds in 2014 (first time ever) and it was amazingly productive.  I also met some great people, too.

So, naturally, with the new year comes new goals and projects.  I decided to dive in and join Round 1.

I have a few main goals, which I’m not setting wordcount goals for yet.  Maybe later, once I get rolling. I need to get rolling first!

So here are my goals:

~Start writing first draft of Fireborn (Reaper Girl #2).  I aim to have it written by the end of the month.  It will be a 25k novella (I hope! I write long!)
~Settle on a plot (loose) for Ever Touched (FT #3)
~Work on Survivor one day a week (“work” loosely defined as: plotting, planning rewrite, brainstorming, actual writing, poking at it with a sharp pointy stick…)

I’m going to start with these and see what happens.  I’m coming off an incredibly long, hard year-long slog on FT book #2, Grave Touched, and I need some easy stuff to dip my toes back into the writing pool.  I’m already feeling the itch to write again, so hey, that’s a good sign.  The muse is starting to get interested…

Looking forward to lots of fun, chocolate (oh yes, stats will be back at some point! I promise!), and productivity.


2014 Year-End Review and 2015 Goals


2014 was a busy, productive year for me.  It was also my (first) Year of No Fear, which went pretty well.  I know I’m slightly late with this, but hey — better late than never, right?

So, first up: Year of No Fear.  I did a review on the Turtleduck Press blog recently and rather than repeat myself, I will point you to that post here. In summary, I did pretty well.  A lot got crossed of the list, and other things weren’t done.  But overall, I’m happy with my progress and will be carrying it forward this year (*points to 2015 Manifesto above*).  As always, you’re welcome to join me. *grin*

Okay, next up: 2014 goals.  How did I do on them?

~Rewrite and revise Grave Touched by deadline (Sept/Oct – we’re not sure yet) ~It turned out to be January 1st and I’m happy to report that I’ve turned it in to my editor and am (*twitches*) waiting to hear what she thinks.
~Continue working on another draft of something (Flamebound is the top contender) if it doesn’t interfere with GT ~This did not happen as such.  I ended up starting an erotica novella as part of my Year of No Fear, which is on the backburner for now, and also wrote a novella for a TDP anthology.  So, yes, new drafts, but nothing from the revision pile yet.
~Continue the Flamebound revision (ties into the draft above) ~Not done for the above reasons.  But I have been doing a massive amount of thinking about it and that is progress. *fierce look*
~Make some type of ruling on Survivor – when to work on it and COMMIT to it ~Yes!  I’ve decided to poke at it on Sundays, which is what I did back in 2004 when I started the draft.  I can probably handle another book on one day, and this gives it a separation so I don’t mess myself up.  It’ll be slow, for now, but I hope to increase the pace sometime soon.
~Plan/plot/figure out Ever Touched ~ Eh, been working on this.  I’m sure of a few things, but not of others.  The main players have changed, however.
~Write more flash stories/poetry ~Done.  Wrote 10 poems and edited 2 drafts.  On flash – wrote and posted to TDP this year: Changeling, part 1: The Faerie Lights, Warped, The Contract, and The Penitent. More to come!

And now, finally, 2015 goals.  I have so much I want to accomplish this year, but don’t want to put myself under too much pressure.  So, here goes:

~Publish Grave Touched, pending approval, in May (tentative)
~Write Fireborn, Reaper Girl novella
~Figure out a plot for Ever Touched
Start writing Ever Touched
Poke at Survivor (my book, not the TV show) on Sundays
~Start rewrite of Flamebound
Write 1 poem per week minimum
~Do something with darkroom

Annnd I’m stopping there, as that’s enough to wrap my head around.  I’m hoping to do some of that writing stuff simultaneously so it doesn’t look so daunting…yeah, I will be busy!

Your turn!  What are your goals for 2015?



Year of No Fear – 2014 Manifesto – February Progress Report

February was a rough month for me. I spent most of it sick. I was hit by bronchitis right after my fall at work, and then once I started feeling better, I got hit with a severe cold. So most of what I wanted to accomplish did not happen.

Hubby and I didn’t ice skate — we still have plans to do more as soon as things calm down.

The Grave Touched Rewrite is going slowly. Still making progress. I’ve spent a lot of time fighting my muse on it so it hasn’t been fun. But I think I’ll be able to continue regardless. I also wanted to start poking at Survivor, another book needing revision. I have a rough plan for that, but I still need to go into the mammoth file and figure some stuff out (1,000+ pages! Yikes!). I was all set to do that when an idea to resurrect my 2009 NaNoWriMo novel Soulfire hit me like lightning. And, naturally, the muse is gung-ho, so I might try to squeeze some work in between stuff. A few hundred words a day won’t hurt, will it? (Don’t answer that.) Ahem. So I still want to work on revisions, but I’m getting sidetracked. Ugh.

Photography! I gots plans for that! I’m starting a Photo-A-Day thing for March. I did it way back in, I wanna say, 2010 in February, and kept it going into March. But then I got sick (see a pattern here?) and stopped altogether. I’d like to do it again to get into the mode of shooting again. I haven’t done any Serious Business photography in forever, and I’m feeling slightly intimated by the idea. So, dipping my toes in. (I also am considering re-opening my darkroom, but I need to get my 35mm automatic camera fixed. Also have a plan for that).

Been thinking more and more about poetry, even joined a few groups. Just need to write some.

Also worked on my erotica idea. Nowhere near time to write it, though. Needs to simmer.

I’m also actively working on dieting — but not the deprivation kind. I’m definitely watching what I’m eating, and decreasing my portion sizes. I still snack occasionally, but I’m trying to be more aware of what and how much of it I’m putting into my mouth. I’ve lost 2.5 pounds. Hopefully I can continue.

Trying to be more optimistic and such, but sometimes the depression gets to me. That’s the honest truth. But I am trying to be more aware of that, too, and counteracting it with positive thoughts and doing things that make me happy.

So I’m making slow progress. I’m hoping to ramp up my efforts this month.

2013 in Review and 2014 Goals: Year of No Fear

This has been a very tough, challenging year for me because of my eye problems and everything that went along with it. An awful lot got compromised and set aside. But, I have accomplished some things that I am very proud of:

~I didn’t write for 3 months and did not go insane or kill anyone. That’s a big plus, right?
~I finished the revision of Grave Touched and turned it in on time. (Unfortunately, it needs a rewrite. More on that later).
~I took Holly Lisle’s Flash Fiction class and wrote 7 flash stories, 6 of which I self-pubbed as an anthology called In Flames. I also contributed to the Turtleduck Press Freebies with actual stories: Beloved(sci-fi) and Mirror (horror). I have another flash story going up on the TDP website on Jan. 1st, The Penitent (supernatural/horror).
~I made great progress on the Flamebound. I’m up to lesson 17 of 22.
~I took Holly Lisle’s Motivation class and learned some very, very important things that I have been trying to put into practice. Not quite there yet, but it’s happening.
~I got several new story ideas to add to the ever-growing writing queue.
~I worked a bit on Darklight as well.
Other goals I set not mentioned above:

~Reread Survivor and make notes for rewrite <–This has been started, but not much work done on it to be honest.
~Start a new novel? (Contenders: Darkweaver and Soul Touched, Fey Touched book 3) <–Not done. Darkweaver's still in the queue, and Fey Touched book #3 has been changed to Ever Touched. I can haz a plan!
~Redesign website so it makes sense Have decided to put this on hold.
~Get on a regular blogging schedule Started, with WWW Wednesdays. Would like to add more.
~Continue to look for more freelance editing/proofreading jobs <–Not really done, as my eye thing made it impossible to do anything except drafting for a loooong time. Still not out of the question — just not right now.

So you see I'm working little by little on reclaiming my life. It might not look like much at all, but I did things — I didn't bemoan my fate and give up. I kept plugging away. And while my writing numbers are quite low, I managed to release an anthology, write 7 flash stories, and finish Grave Touched. Not bad in my book. (I also want to add that as of November-ish, I’ve written just shy of 150k for the year. Not bad for having eye pain for almost a year!).

A little aside about Grave Touched… What can I say? I was be-bopping along, thinking I’d nailed it (or came close to it), only to find out that I screwed up. Bigtime. I believe I might have been a bit delusional. I won’t blame my eye entirely, but it did mess a bit with my creativity and story decisions. My editor — bless her soul — is totally right. It needs a rewrite. I know I am up to the challenge, and I know the book will be better and stronger for it. Am I disappointed? Hell yeah. But I consider myself a professional, and a professional would take a step back, shed the ego, and really look at what’s going on. Once I did that, I knew she was right. And I’ve already started on the planning, and I have some good ideas for improving it. So, no big.

As for the release date…we’re rejigging our release schedule and tentatively it looks like around February 2015. That may seem like a loooooong time, but in writing time, it’s not. It’s partly to accommodate the new schedule and to accommodate my need for enough time to do a thorough rewrite. So that’s the story.

As for 2014 goals…I’ve made some big decisions for this year. I am going to do things that I’ve been afraid to do. Fear is a HUGE factor in motivation, I found out. And when I dug in and followed the path to the source, it was mostly fear that was holding me back. So I want to fix this in 2014. Along with the following:

~Rewrite and revise Grave Touched by deadline (Sept/Oct – we’re not sure yet)
~Continue working on another draft of something (Flamebound is the top contender) if it doesn’t interfere with GT
~Continue the Flamebound revision (ties into the draft above)
~Make some type of ruling on Survivor – when to work on it and COMMIT to it
~Plan/plot/figure out Ever Touched
~Write more flash stories/poetry

As for the non-writing goals, check out my 2014 Manifesto (forthcoming!)

Hopefully, things will settle down in 2014 and I can get more creative stuff going. I miss photography and I want to grow and enrich my life. I also hope to nail the GT rewrite and get back on track with the series. And WRITE MORE.

Happy 2014. See you on the flip side.