Saturday, April 24, 2010

My Blog Moved

Funny things those blogs... you can find it here:

Thursday, April 22, 2010

nighthunter's bite in progress again

I'm liking the new title Etherea in her Veins but on the lookout in case anything more interesting comes jogging by. I'm rewriting the story from memory, guided by my edit list, things I need to keep in mind when writing this. It's interesting this way; there's no writing pressure to rushrushtypetype and I'm a lot more relaxed about it. I've already written it, so I know my setting and I'm intimate with my characters. Rather than go line by line from the old version, I am writing it how I love it. To be honest, I also need to do it this way so I can work on it a little over the weekend. I'm visiting my sister out of state and taking my daughter to play with the cousins. It'll be crazy, but thanks to my laptop and its 9 cell battery, I don't have to worry about plugging in anywhere.

Deadlines though; I'm submitting this one to Sword & Sorceress and we're already a week into the submission period. I don't want to wait for the last week to submit it. I need to give this story a fighting chance. My only concern is that they want strong female characters, and in every story I've read in S&SXXV, the women start out in positions of power, or at least respectable positions. Mine starts a slave and comes into her own. Hopefully, they'll like it. If not, we'll see who else will.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

triangulation rejection

For a story that I wrote, revised, and submitted over the course of 30 days, I'm surprised I received such a quality rejection. I'm pleased she went into such detail, points being positive and constructive. I figured a personal rejection from Triangualtion would be myabe a paragraph, some feedback on whatever ailing issue destroyed the story. But no -- it was a page long. I am very grateful and will definitely be revising this one before sending it out again.

And I think the response has encouraged me to maintain the theme in the story. I don't think I can pull the rainbow out too easily. I'll revise the rest of it and start submitting it elsewhere and see what happens.

What I learned? Don't wait until the last minute. I was stuck on the idea for the longest time before I finally wrote it, and had only enough time for two decent revisions. One more revision round might have been enough. When next year's theme is announced,  I'll be getting to work on it right away. I want to get better at deadlines. I'll write and revise better. This is my first year of serious submission: it's my training-wheels year. Next year, I'm riding a two-wheeler.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

shadows and bites

I'm in a weird place right now. I'm preparing for a road trip at the end of the week, but trying to jump into two projects that both require serious concentration. Shadows needs a massive block of worldbuilding, which I'll be trying to work on tonight, and Nighthunter's Bite is is need of a kind-of rewrite because I don't think the viewpoint (1st again) really works for the story. I tried, but the it's better from third. Third works most of the time, but every now and again I decide to fiddle with. It's good to try things differently. Maybe one day I'll find the perfect story for 1st person. It's not this one though. Well off to do some dishes then choose between projects...

Friday, April 16, 2010

back to work

Insane week, boy am I glad it's over. Computer's in good shape, and the only thing left to deal with is getting to know office 2007 as I work in the programs. Getting some sleep tonight and picking up with Nighthunter's Bite tomorrow. The new title may be "Etherea in Her Veins". I'll sleep on it. :)

Thursday, April 15, 2010


I'm learning Windows 7 and I'm learning to get comfortable using the laptop keyboard (very comfy size compared to the HP I use for work) and I'm even learning how to use the touch pad and am only using the mouse when I get stuck and am not sure how to do what I need.

The dual monitor bit isn't working like I'd hoped and I'm not sure why at the moment. I'll have to read up more on it. I do know location matters.  The little computer desk I'm using now is a little cramped with all this stuff on it, but I'm not sure how often I'll be down here with this setup. The dual monitor thing is neat, and may come in handy during editing. The plan is to convert to an on-screen revision process and view the old material in one screen and use the new screen for retyping. We'll see how that goes. In the meantime, I've got to make the laptop recognize the second monitor.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

new computer :)


Probably no writing tonight, have to figure out the new toy. But tomorrow – Nighthunter’s Bite, with a new title and some new attitude from my MC. I promise.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

story submitted

Technically submitted. The envelope is on my desk, signed and sealed, and awaiting a trip to the post office. I won't make today's closing, so it'll go out on Monday.

This is a record for me: less than one week between writing the first draft, revising, and submitting. The beauty of flash fiction that works. I just seriously hope this one makes it, because the theme is so strong in this story, there is no way I can rewrite it to avoid the "colors of silence" theme.

Friday, April 9, 2010

trying to fit it all in

I've been horrible with my fitness and healthy eating plan, so I've finally figured out how to fix the food situation. First, no more buying food from the cafeteria at work. On Sunday, I'll be prepping veggie and fruit containers to handle that. I have to test how long a made salad will last in an air tight container, and I have to remember to hardboil five eggs on Sunday while I'm prepping my food. I managed to eat healthy for 3 workdays this week, which happened to be the days I was able to get up earlier.  So it all ties in.

But the exercise? I've been walking during lunch on the nice days, but walking isn't enough. I need a way to fit in weights and max cardio. Walking should be a bonus. Unfortunately, it looks like I'm going to have to mess with my writing schedule to fit this in. My least productive writing time is the evening session, so do I give that up to do a dvd workout after the kids go to bed? I'd still be able to fit in my reading afterward. Having the new laptop will help too - maybe I can get a half hour of writing related stuff in. I'm going to have to play with this. I was only planning on using 3 lunches a week at work for writing, the other two for fitness. I have a hard time with running a different schedule from day to day, but I think this is what I'll have to do. Even play it by ear-- if it's a lunch workout day, then I write in the evening. If it's a writing lunch, I work out in the evening.

The problem with that, is betwen the day job and getting the kids sorted out, the rest is kind of relfex. "It's 8:15pm so I need to be at my computer writring", etc. I like reflex. It's what makes my schedule work. I think I could reduce my 8x11 weekly schedule sheet down to an index card and print it off so it's more accessible in my purse calendar which I look at daily, rather than in my writing folder, which doesn't come out until I sit down to write.

And the bad news is this gets adjusted 2-3 times a year based on the amount of sunlight available to drive home in after work. Which means I'd lose my after work writing time November through January.

Damn it, I need to be more flexible. :) Or move someplace where the sun shines more in the winter. :D Better wait for the bestseller for that . . .

Thursday, April 8, 2010

time, energy, and the life of a good idea

The new story option veered away from the silence theme, as did the second new story option.  With seven days left, I have decided to clean up the Angel story as best I can and submit that, and be done with the theme.

All is not lost though; I am pleased with the results of this endeavor. In trying to get Black Violas ready for submission, I ended with a new contest entry, two strong story ideas, and the conversion of Black Violas to either a full length short story or development into a novella.

I learned a lot about writing on theme. I've written according to prompts before, and pictures or words that inspire me, but I've always allowed myself to let the idea evolve naturally. Deviating from that prompt was necessary. For a contest--that's pretty much a rejection.

So I have a strong entry for parsec. I'm happy with that. I'm going to spend the next few days making it stronger, and then getting back to my other projects. It's not just about how much I can do, but how GOOD I can do.

And speaking of good, March was horrible for working out. I managed to walk a few times, but only made it to the gym once. I need to fit it in someplace other wise my sedentary lifestyle is going to be very bad for me and my wardrobe. :P

Wednesday, April 7, 2010


Talk about storms... my post from this morning is now outdated as far as Black Violas goes. Black Violas is a good story, and the contest theme led me to it, but they don't fit together. I broke the story elements out to what would fit, but my heart isn't in it. I like the story the way it is, aside from fixing plot holes and getting it to fix inside the 3500 wordcount limit. So why do I need to do that? I don't. I can turn this baby into a novella, get into all those nitty gritty details without freaking out about writing a full length novel on this topic.

So my new plan for the parsec contest: I'm taking the elements I broke down and fitting it to a fantasy story, changing the setting from a cave to a forest (because I really don't need two cave-in stories!), and THIS concept seems to fit the theme better, more naturally.

Here's the catch: I only have eight days to write, revise, and submit this thing.  I am insane, but I'm going to give it a shot!

eight days left

Eight days. Technically nine, but I need the ninth day to go to my day job and hit the post office, which also happens to fall on Tax Day. Punishment for waiting until the very last minute I suppose, but I've been struggling with this story for months. Every time I think Black Violas is done and in the right direction, I've discovered a solid reason that it doesn't work. For the longest time, I had a whisper in my head that I was forcing the theme. And really, I was on the right track, but the way I was using it was forcing it.

The good news is I've finally figured out how to fix it. I let go of "I want" and started at the ending, thinking of how the theme and issue could be resolved together, and figured out what needs to happen to get Meghan there. And what's even better, I get to keep the cave-in scene I liked, I just need to change what planet it happened on. There's more to it than that, but that's enough to keep me going.

The bad news? I'm losing my beloved title. I had been trying so hard to keep the part of the story that gave it its title. It was my visual for the entire thing. Oh well. No sense in destroying a story if the title is going to kill it. :)

Eight days.

Monday, April 5, 2010

shadow of blood

Shadow of Blood is a novel I started in 2005 that I dropped midpregnancy (and alas, mid-novel). It only needs another 40k until it's a good length for a first draft, so it's a good project to start with, as I haven't written novel length fiction in a few years.

I started reading this with horror, unable to believe the content and the quality of the writing, which speaks of how far I've progressed in these years. I also learned as I'm reading the halfway point in the existing story, that I can probably just chop off the first half of it. The story picks up, and I'm in love with it again. My two main characters are showing their true colors (to each other, not to everyone else!) and I'm seeing a lot of places where cutting characters or at least making their roles more vital (every character has to matter in some way, and carry their own weight).  This is good.

I've even got my Sentence for the story:

After the senseless death of his brother, a despondant slave and his rebellious mistress conspire to end one hundred years of oppression by learning and using the forbidden art of magic.

Friday, April 2, 2010

new story today

While analyzing Black Violas, I had inspiration for a new story (also related to the parsec theme) and I wrote it right then and there in the parking lot. Came home and typed it up after dinner and am now looking at the revision. I've never written flash fiction before, and it was amazing that I got the elements right. I'm tweaking the details, but I love the story. It'll come into its own before long. :)

Thursday, April 1, 2010

March Progress / April Goals

March was amazing. I figured out the writing schedule and I got my goals done. Of course, I did revamp mid-month, but that's par for me and goals. Goals are guidelines and I tweak them in order to get stuff done. I have more deadlines in April, but they are spaced out, thankfully.

March results:
  • Viable Paradise application and submission story
  • Rise of the Tiger Princess: drafted, revised twice, submitted
  • The Lonely Orchard: revised and submitted
  • Watering the Black Violas: revised
  • Shadow of Blood: rereading novel-in-progress

April Goals:
  • Watering the Black Violas: revise and submit by 4/15
  • Nighthunter's Bite: revise and submit by 4/30
  • Shadow of Blood: read, review world notes, complete neccessary worldbuilding, and continue the writing at 500 words daily for a weekly goal of 2,500 words. Estimated completion date is July.