Archive for the 'WIP' Category
Tuesday, July 28th, 2015
Jake Lake once said that he liked to write a book over a period of no more than 3 months. For that long, he said, he could hold the whole plot in his head and he didn’t lose things. Longer than that, and bit and pieces started to fall away and he had to work a lot harder to get the story down. At that time, the idea of writing a 3 month book was absolutely crazy to me. I couldn’t imagine ever succeeding at that.
But then I did. I learned he was right. For about three months, maybe four, I didn’t have to worry about taking a ton of notes on where I was going or what the characters were up to. I could hold the story in my head. In writing that speed, I kept the pacing sharp and I also had a lot of fun. I never felt bogged down in a scene, because the scenes went by too quickly for quagmire. If they didn’t, that meant the scene had a problem.
I learned this lesson. It’s hard, because writing that fast means discipline and sticking to a schedule. It also means the words damned well better flow. One truth for me is that the words tend to flow better when I stick to a schedule, get sleep and exercise, and I eat reasonably health. I feel energized and creative.
My son got sick and that took a lot more out of me than I ever expected. Part of it was having to go to the neverending doctor appointments. Part of it was having to watch him suffer and being helpless. Part of it was trying to be strong for everybody in the family, and especially my daughter. And it kept going on and on. Still is, really, but at least he’s improving.
Anyhow, my creativity grew thick and dense and unwilling. Writing was more miss than hit and I did fewer and fewer words as my schedule fragmented. I have no regrets–I was and am spectacularly happy to be available to the kids when they need me. Not everyone, not even most, can do that and I can and I have had no problems making them my priority.
I ended up having to reschedule my books and give myself much longer to finish them. That meant that I was going to plan for six months rather than three months per book. While that has been necessary, it has also made a difficult creative process even more difficult. Because I feel like scenes lag because I spend more time on them. I feel like I lose the character voices. I feel like I lose track of what I wanted the story to be. It’s infuriating.
In the fall the kids (both!) go back to school. I hope to regain my routine and hopefully my production. I hope to dive deeper into the creative ocean and live in it more so that the story will flow better. I have a lot of things I still want to write.
Tuesday, July 7th, 2015
Today has been a crappy writing day. And by that, I mean I hardly got anywhere. Lots of typing and erasing and doubting and, well, see the title of his post.
I did write a little bit I do like, so rough as it is, I’m sharing:
I contemplated what to do. The trouble was that doing wasn’t exactly an option. That meant my only option was to open the door on the spirit world inside myself. Easy peasy. And for my next trick, I’d fly to Mars and back, and then jump a tornado to Oz.
The trouble was, I didn’t have any other choices, reasonable or not. It wasn’t like I was going anywhere. I took a breath and let it out and focused my attention on the problem. That’s when I noticed how uncomfortable I was. Let me say this: any reasonably well-endowed woman lying face down is for any length of time is going to start to feel a certain ache in her boobs. Before long, it’s going to turn into a raging ache. My panic attack had distracted me from the mild discomfort portion of the show, and now I had to bite my lip to tolerate the ever-increasing throbbing pain. Maybe I could shoot for a trifecta and get cramps and my period now, too.
If I could have, I would have shaken my head. As it was, I mentally smacked myself for going off track—not to mention tempting fate–and pulled myself back to the problem at hand.
Tuesday, June 30th, 2015
Let’s start with what has nothing to do with the title. My dad’s foot is infected again. Apparently the bone infection wasn’t completely gone. He’s now getting daily infusions for the next month, so they put a PICC line in. There’s a scary possibility that there might be gangrene. I’m not sure when we’ll know. Anyhow, we wait and hope.
As for the subject of the post, I hit a wall with the book. I backed up and chopped out about 3K words and now I’m trying to pick up where I”m going next and how this book is going to finish out and I’ve got about fifty gallons of stuff to stuff into a teaspoon. I can do this.
Monday, June 1st, 2015
This weekend we took my dad to the emergency room to get his foot checked out. He’d had an infection that wasn’t getting better. So they did an ultrasound and no clots. Gave him more antibiotics and he seems to be improving. They drove to CA today and we are watching their dog, who is a littermate for our dogs. He’s pushy and demanding and my dogs are jealous. Pet pet pet pet.
Working on writing stuff. Am now past the halfway point in the next Diamond City Magic book. I have yet to have a title for it. But I’m excited to have made it past the half. At the same time, I look forward at what I have to pack into the now less-than-half and I start freaking out that I will never be able to get it all in. And so the neuroses of writers evolve throughout a book.
This is a snippet from something totally different I’m working on here and there, when especially when I get stuck:
Which means that the trap was meant for us in particular. Why?”
“Because of the box, of course,” a young, feminine voice said.
I spun around to face the door. Just inside was the young woman from the elevator who’d seemed so familiar.
That’s when I realized who she was. The incubus had killed her in Vegas. She was a corpse.
Sunday, May 24th, 2015
I’ve been meaning to make another RT post with pictures. Obviously I have not done that yet. I still plan to. But I have to resize the pics and that’s going to take a little bit, cause I can’t do that with my laptop. Or rather, I might be able to, but the program I use is on my other machine.
In the meantime, I’ve been getting writing done, doing boy of size health stuff, taking care of girlie who got sick this weekend, and now I’m trying to overcome a barfy tummy myself. The dogs are doing their best to help by laying next to me and looking very cute.
We went to the coast today and walked on the beach. That was fun. Haven’t been in awhile. Boy did okay, though he did have one seizure episode, but it was short. Girlie had a blast. Found all sorts of cool shells and rocks. Also, the seals were begging from the crab fisherfolk. I think one of them thought that the corgi boys were seals that had found a way to run along the beach. I think it wanted them to come swimming.
I finally got a monkey puzzle tree!!! There’s a nursery that specializes in them out near Pacific City, and so we went there. They had some bigger trees that I couldn’t begin to afford. So this one is only about two feet tall max. It’s a slow growing tree, so I think we’re going to put it in a container for awhile until we can decide to figure out what to do next. And that’s to say where we want to plant it or if we can move other things to plan it and that sort of thing. It’s a girl tree, we think. Apparently boy trees have limbs that go down and then up, and girl trees have limbs that go up from the trunk. Gotta have both if you want to make viable seeds. At this point we don’t. The next tree I want to get is a red dragon contorted filbert. I just have to figure out where to get one.
The drag is that summer is quickly approaching for having kids home. That means my writing could get more fouled up than ever. I hope not.
Oh, went to the farmer’s market on Saturday. Bought some pepper plants. Tomorrow I have to get them in and hopefully plant some other seeds. Melons, cukes, and that sort of thing. I may need to go get some seeds. My cilantro and dill didn’t really take so I’m going to have to replant those. My tomatoes are doing super well. I planted them a little too early, but it hasn’t worked against me yet. Hopefully they’ll start setting fruit soon. Oh, and we’re getting strawberries! The blueberry bushes have berries and so does the loganberry. We put in some new raspberries and I hope they get rooted in nicely for next year.
We still have a bunch of stuff we want to do in the yard. I have a bunch of groundcover seeds to plant, too. So I’m hoping to get them in this week.
Oh, got this ring at the farmer’s market. It’s made by a fabulous local artist. The ring is silver, the spider is cut from a soda can, and the top is gemmy quartz. I have wanted one since I saw the one she made for herself. I’m working on a spider story and have been forever it seems, and this is motivation to finish. I just love it.
The other ring, btw, I got at RT. You can’t see it well, but it’s rainbow moonstone. I love moonstone and this has really nice rainbow flash.
And a little snippet of something I’m working on. It’s rough, but hope you enjoy:
With a flick of Law’s fingers, the magic surrounding the demon melted. Instantly the creature leaped to his feet, propelled by powerful legs and the sharp downsweep of his outstretched wings.
He faced us. The shine on his skin had faded along with the layer of lubricant goo. His eyes had gone black with small hole of orange in the center, just as they’d looked in Tabitha’s memory. He swayed like he was going to pounce, wings upraised, his bony fingers curling, talons clacking together.
Happy Memorial Day. I am so grateful for all those who serve. I planned a post to talk about it, but I don’t know if I’ll pull myself together, so I’m seizing the day. I’m grateful for those who put themselves in harm’s way for the rest of us. Thank you.
Wednesday, March 25th, 2015
There are bad things going on in this country. I hate that people are passing laws to permit discrimination. It’s so very wrong. Why do people have to be such fucking assholes?
The boy has up days now and down days and I’m battling with the doctor for a referral. Or not so much battling, as getting ignored and pissed off. But I’m going another route, so hoping to have progress tomorrow.
Great progress on the next Diamond City Magic book. Which is to say, I’ve been writing it and it’s coming along well as far as I can tell. I’m at least entertained at this point, which counts. For me anyhow. Remember, Edge of Dreams comes out in less than a month!!!! I’m so excited. I can’t wait to hear what you all think. So long as you think good things. I can really wait on the other.
And since I forgot to post this, The cover!!! (sorry, I don’t have an actual image of my own yet, so the link). I love it. What do you think? Actually, that wasn’t the cover, was it. It’s Do you want to hide a body, which I find terribly amusing, so I’m leaving it.
And the actual cover . . . .
Also, the proofer for the manuscript sent my editor some really cool comments on the book. How cool is that? I’ve never had that happen before.
And The Black Ship got a great review!
I’m going to be at Norwescon. I’m going to be incognito–no panels. Just being social. So if anyone is going to be there, let me know. I’ll be up for hanging out.
Also, I did not commit child murder today. This was a good. Teenagers are hard. Sick teenagers are harder. But I was able to channel my irritation into the scene in my book. No death, but a good argument.
Monday, March 2nd, 2015
This Monday wasn’t seriously horrible, actually. Boy of size is still suffering a lot of pain. The MM helps for periods, but not for any sort of duration. He’s utterly miserable. The antibiotics don’t seem to be doing much yet, painwise.
I’m going to the Rainforest Writing Retreat on Weds. for five days. I’ve been working on my talk that I’ll be giving there and wondering what the hell I was thinking suggesting this topic. Here’s hoping I get it sorted out. I’ve already written up a bunch of stuff and I’m not at all sure it’s coherent. I suppose I shall make it so.
In the meantime, I’m developing what I can in preparation for a writing blitz and hoping I can find my head and creativity. I’ve got a short story I’m working on for the Weird Wild West anthology I’m a part of. I also have a third Diamond City Magic book to start drafting. A fifth Crosspointe book to think through some more, and a couple of novellas I’ve been toying with. So plenty to do, and maybe too much.
Over the weekend I read David Coe’s Spell Blind. Go read it. Very good. Magic, police procedure, mystery. Well written and I just loved it. Can’t wait for the second. I started reading Devon Monk’s House Immortal today. It’s really good and I can’t wait to read more of it.
We planted some bulbs today, and some pansies. We’ve a bunch more to plant, but I figure progress is good, and it was a bright sunshiny day. I took the dogs for a longish walk, which was also good. The trees on the street are all bursting into bloom, and there are daffodils, crocuses, hyacinths, and azaleas everywhere. It’s such a difference from Montana. I feel a little like I’m in wonderland.
Sunday, February 15th, 2015
It was a gorgeous day today. About 65 and brilliantly sunny. Crocuses and primroses are blooming in the yard. We took the dogs walking out in a big park downtown. 90 acres, lots of trees. It was delightful. I also met with my knitting teacher to figure out how I’d screwed up my knitting, which was worse than I thought, but we mostly fixed everything. Next time we move on to the next steps.
The boy did acupuncture for the first time yesterday. It may be helping. It’s too soon to tell. I am hoping. I got him to exercise twice today, and that’s a big plus.
I’ve been getting some writing done, along with some reading. That’s all good.
Here’s a little snippet with of the WIP:
He held his hand out. She made herself take it, gripping firmly through her gloves. She didn’t like touching mages. She pulled away, shoving her hands into her coat pockets and curling them into fists.
“Hagen tells me you can read the room,” he said.
Cady’s lips tightened. She forced a smile. “Hagen says a lot of things. Some are even true.”
“Can you read the room?” he demanded.
“Cady,” Hagen chided, his hand on her shoulder tightening.
Blaze flicked him an irritated glance, which won him a point in her book. The enemy of my enemy . . . Not that the bald giant was her enemy. He’d done everything in his power to protect her since she’d left fieldwork.
That earned an inward grimace. Left it. Like she’d had a choice. Yet here she was, about to go back out where all the boogeymen waited, including Blaze Watkins. Hopefully he didn’t plan to put a knife in her back. Hagen insisted the she could trust the mage, had shown her all the files on him. Or at least the files Hagen wanted her to see. She had no doubt there were more hidden somewhere.
Blaze Watkins had had a stand-up career with the PCIA, and then had gone private after he’d disobeyed orders he didn’t like. Most of that episode had been redacted, but Hagen claimed the mage had had good reasons. Which, coming from the head of the PCIA, could be viewed as a positive endorsement. But then again, only some of the things Hagen said were true. She usually found out which when she was hipdeep in a shit creek with crocodiles chewing her ass.
“You aren’t sure?” Blaze asked.
“I never am until I am,” she said. She bent down to pick up her pack and slung it over her shoulder, dislodging Hagen’s hand in the process. “We’re burning daylight.”
Tuesday, January 13th, 2015
I got to hang out with three different writers this week. Michaela Roessner was in town and I visited with her at her sister’s farm. I pet lots of puppies and horses, and took a walk around the land and it was so lovely. I just wish we’d had more time.
Then I visited with Devon Monk, who taught me some more knitting stuff, so I’m that much closer to learning how to make socks! It’s exciting. Really.
Today I met Barb and JC Hendee in person, and Barb and I went into downtown McMinnville and wandered about and we ended up in the yarn store and the quilt store (the quilt store had lovely quilts on display.) Gorgeous sunny day, today.
Now Joyce, when are we getting together????
Boy got through yesterday without vomiting. I so hope it’s a trend.
Tomorrow I take a knitting class and write write write.
My head went back to feeling sluggy and exhausted. Stupid cold. Here’s hoping it’s better tomorrow. Not enough caffeine.
Saturday, January 3rd, 2015
Yep, made it three days in to the new year. Whoohoo!
Boy of size has been feeling mostly good, to the point of bounciness. It’s really nice to see him to happy. Course he just got up out of bed and I suspect vomiting. I suppose I’ll find out soon.
We did some cleaning and organizing today. Need to do so much more. But at least we did that much. And I made words. Here are some of them, good, bad, or indifferent (from Crossointe 5):
“You should stay here on the Root,” she announced. Her eyes had turned the color of wildfire, orange flames billowing hotly.
Shaye just smiled blandly. They’d had this conversation before, and no doubt they’d have it again. “No.”
“You can’t risk yourself. If you go back, Jutras majick will infect you—you’ll go insane or die.” Tears welled in her eyes and rolled down her cheeks. The silver drops sizzled on the wood when they fell.
Yep, boy got sick. I thought maybe he’d get through today without, but at least it’s only once. I’m clinging to that.
Tomorrow we hope to move some plants around to prepare for some yard work in the back yard, and go to Costco. Unless it rains. In which case there won’t be plant moving. Plus I plan to write.
I’ve been toying with this idea that wants to be written. But I am needing to research some military jargon and hierarchies. I’m likely to need some help. I’m going to have to do some research, apparently. Some is language, some is interactions, some is how systems function. Not that I have time to write this. But it may not wait.
I have been knitting and learning more. I am enjoying that, but I’d like to expand my knowledge and do some more. Socks are my biggest goal right now. And then bigger things. And color. Though frankly I lose count quickly and I’m a real beginner and don’t know a lot of stuff about a lot of stuff. Like how to fix my work when I screw up. At least I can do some things and my stitches are even.