Not dead, just busy

Some people wake up in the middle of the night, drenched in sweat and certain they are forgetting something important in their daily routine. I don’t exactly experience that, but I do recall, from time to time, I have been neglecting Misadventures In Writing. Again.

Admittedly, that’s a bit stupid of me since I do pay for the domain name and all, but…Right. Moving along.

I’ve been busy lately. There are a few factors to this, ranging from my new job (hooray!), being in a great relationship (hooray!), and some personal crises (the opposite of hooray), but I’m happy to report I’ve been finding time for writing. Not as much as I should be, but I’m still managing to get some writing done on most days. I’d call that a success.

In that regards, I’d like to direct attention to my latest Misadventure: my project on Inkshares, which is also the current novel I’m working on (and the product of the world-building I posted here). The novel’s working title is Dissonance in Harmony, and it’s receiving a fair bit of praise.

The project can be seen here. Now, this is where I need help. In order for a project on Inkshares to see publication, it needs to meet, at the very least, a light publishing goal of 250 pre-orders. That’s any pre-orders a project receives, including eReader-only ones. All support–sharing the link to my project, following along, or pre-ordering in any way–is greatly appreciated.

What I really like about Inkshares is that it allows me to post chapters as I like. It sweetens the deal a bit, I think, to have a chance to read some of what you might be supporting. The first four chapters are available for perusal; if you like what you see, please consider a pre-order?

On that note: it’s Easter, and dinner is almost ready. Om nom nom.

Some world-building

…and a little teasing.

In case any of you have been curious as to what I’m up to, writing-wise, I wanted to tease a little of one of my more recent novel ideas. Instead of just giving away some of it, however, I thought I’d share the world-myth as a little bit of a tease.

Bits and piece of this had solidified a while ago, but some of the finer details really solidified today. I’m really pleased with what I have here–though it should be noted this is a first draft of an idea that is being fleshed out in a full novel–and so I hope it’s an enjoyable read. Continue reading

A novel conundrum

Oh, hey. It’s six days into 2016 and I’ve managed to not continue writing the date with a 15 at the end. I’ll chalk that up as a pretty solid victory. Hopefully you’ve all had victories of your own, both creative and otherwise. (Really, though; can we take a moment to appreciate how easy it is to slip up and put the previous year on something? Because if you think otherwise, you clearly have your shit far more together than I do.)

With a new year, I find myself with new ideas. This shouldn’t be mistaken for me having new ideas and knowing what I want to do with them, of course, given that the new year also brought me being relocated to a new store at work. At least the ideas are there?  Continue reading

Weekly Progress Recap

I was going to name this day’s entries Wednesday’s Weekly Work Updates, but I would hate myself too much. And so, for now, dies the alliterative titles.

Wednesday’s posts are simple ones, acting more as a kick to my ass to help me get moving a little faster for the remainder of the week (instead of potentially slowing down, of course) instead of a means of being entertaining. Just like all of my other blog posts are something other than a means of entertainment. Zing! I really burned myself there.

My heart’s not in this tonight, as I took a nap that left me feeling like someone pushed me down a cartoonishly tall cliff, complete with many rocks for me to bounce off of.

The Progress So Far

Unnamed Novel-Project – 53/??? pages; 1 new chapter in progress, plenty of editing completed

One Hundred Days of Blogging version 2.0 – What the **** was I thinking?

Things I Need to Focus On

“Cordelia’s” (short story) – Status: Mapped out in a notebook

“Woman Seeks Vampire for Dinner and a Movie” (short story; tentative title) – Status: Locked in my brain-meat

Projects On Hold

The Lodgers (novel) – Started, but trapped in creative Limbo

The Devil Sort of Made Me Do It (novel; tentative title) – Started, but trapped in creative Limbo

[Redacted] – Nope. Nope nope nope. Not telling. Sorry.

Miscellany

Super Deluxe Commented Copy of Joshua Harkin and the Wicked Nightmare King for Lindsey (the best beta-reader the aforementioned book had) – Uh…In progress-ish.

I feel like there’s more going on, but I can’t honestly think of it at the moment. Obviously this is ignoring my 45+ hours of work and tendency to take naps on a regular basis.

Ninety-six days remaining.

Misadventures in writing a second novel

Oh, wow. How far is it into January again? I’m pretty sure the year just started yesterday.

Unless I’m actually a time-traveler who doesn’t realize he’s a time-traveler…

It goes without saying that I’m a little dazed and confused. I’d like to shift the blame to being a time-traveler, but I think this gloomy, post-Christmas gray-and-frozen weather is to blame for my inability to remember what day it is. What I do know, however, is in this haze of work and naps and new things brought along with the changing over to a new year (or a New Year) has also got me working on something new and exciting, and that’s lead to an interesting couple of revelations.

The something new is a new novel-project-mess, which I may have mentioned. It’s another new novel. I lose track because I start too many projects only to let them wander around My Documents, alone and bored until I remember they exist. All of this is especially worth talking about now because it was around this time last year that I went absolutely crazy in terms of cranking out new pages of material for Joshua Harkin and the Wicked Nightmare King, a title I have grown to regret as it might as well read Joshua Harkin and the Paragraph-Long Title.

Progress is a bit more slow than with Joshua’s Nightmares (I’m aiming for brevity here, people), taking into consideration I have a different job than I had this time last year, complete with different hours, responsibilities, and so on. I am also, I’ve found, more prone to taking naps. That’s something I still need to work on.

What I’m also noticing, however, is that this novel has already taken on enough of a life of its own that it’s impossible to really compare it to its predecessor in any real, meaningful way. Joshua’s Nightmares was general fiction in the broadest sense. It features elements of sci-fi, fantasy, humor, horror, and so on. Current Novel Without a Name (the file name, which doesn’t really betray much in terms of plot, is currently The Princess, The Lich, and Some Murders) is more restricted in that it’s a blend of humor and fantasy, skipping out on sci-fi (read as “this will be lacking in epic battles between space pirates”).

The plot itself is taking more time to unfold, as I don’t want to rush getting the major players where they need to be. Events need to unfold over the right amount of time, and getting that figured out is taking up…well, more time.

Fortunately, I can say I’m starting the year off with plenty of writing instead of plenty of slacking, as even on my worst days I’m still adding to this project’s word count.

Of course, there’s always Joshua Harkin and the Wicked Nightmare King to keep busy with until this book is finished (and eventually published, I hope). Definitely just a little proud of having a four-point-three star rating for my first novel. Please check it out and, if you’re feeling extra generous, write a review once you’re done. I’ll be donating 50% of the money I earn from book sales to the American Cancer Society via Relay for Life.

Wherever you are, whatever you’re creating, and no matter how many days you forgot just what point in the week it is, I hope you’re all having a good start to this new year so far.

The 2014 NaNoWriMo decision is…

Tonight is surprisingly devoid of Halloween-related goodness. No scary movies until tomorrow, as Brianne has coursework to focus on. Trick-or-treating happened last night ’round these parts. I’m not feeling particularly motivated to dig out any scary video games or read any spooky stories. Oh, and I’m starting to feel sick but I think that’s mostly thanks to this awful warm-and-cold alternating weather (get your shit together, Mother Nature). I’ll chalk it up to the stars being in a funky alignment or some witch putting a particularly unimpressive hex on me and move on.

It’s NaNoWriMo Eve after all, and there are thousands upon thousands of writers all over who are currently full of anticipation and anxiety for the next thirty days of self-torment under the disguise of writing. After a fair bit of consideration, going back and forth on the topic, I’ve decided to not go for the crazy glory this year. If I’m not doing a great deal of writing already, I can only imagine how much additional stress and frustration this will produce.

Best of luck to everyone who does participate.

The question of NaNoWriMo revisited

I hesitate to admit this, but apparently it’s almost November already. I’m fairly certain it was mid-July just last week, but perhaps time has gotten away from me. At least I didn’t somehow miss Halloween. Yet.

November means NaNoWriMo, which I’ve brought up relatively recently(ish). It’s that special kind of self-inflicted torture writers endure/enjoy for one full month, attempting to produce a 50k word novel before November wraps up. This is only appropriate as The Thanksgiving Food Coma usually spells doom for writers who have failed to maintain a moderate to intense level of daily writing discipline throughout the month. Nothing about NaNoWriMo is easy, from balancing writing against other obligations to fighting against the madness-inducing 50k final word count.

This begs the following question: why in the Hell am I thinking about throwing all caution (and reasonable thought) to the wind and giving it yet another go? It would be in the shadow of the ass-kicking, brain-draining Hundred Days of Blogging (which is so close to being over but still so far away). The holiday shopping season will be upon us too soon, and I still happen to work in a retail setting that is going to get absolutely stampeded. There’s also the small matter of my birthday happening at some point next month, which I imagine will involve plenty of its own distractions as well. I’m still considering it, though. Not a damn clue why. Brianne posed a reasonable question in response to me voicing my interest in tackling NaNoWriMo: “Do you want to torture yourself?”

Perhaps? On one hand, it could be a good way to really kick-start my currently-unnamed novel project. On the other hand, I know too well that working under pressure usually doesn’t make for my best creative moments (although, to be fair, it’s hit or miss because sometimes it lends to me producing my best work). I think the answer will have to wait until November. Around midnight, November 1st. We’ll see where this ends up from there and then.

Updates, excitement, and justifying laziness

Or “I finally fixed my description for Joshua’s Nightmares, I have big writing news, and figured out a way to explain some of the laziness in my writing that makes sense.”

Over the course of the past month or so, I’ve written over fifty-thousand new words in my first draft of Joshua’s Nightmares. That’s a NaNoWriMo’s worth of words. Almost a metric shit-ton, or perhaps more than a metric- shit-ton (I honestly don’t know how to properly quantify that much, but I know it’s a lot). It’s been an extraordinary adventure, and I still have a fair bit to go before it’s over. Again, I want to apologize to, as well as thank, all of the people who have to endure me talking at great lengths about this project. I almost apologized to my journal a couple nights ago because I keep writing about writing this, and that’s when I realized I need to calm down and just enjoy every little bit of the writing process as this idea gradually grows into its end stages. It’s the longest piece of writing I’ve ever worked on, and it’s the most excited I’ve been to work on anything in quite some time (since before Thesis Seminar at Edinboro, which was certainly a thing that happened). It’s fifteen pages shy of hitting the 200 page mark, and that seems pretty amazing to me. Continue reading

How early is too early to plan a sequel?

Or “How to handle being too attached to your own characters without killing them all at the end of the book.”

I skipped out on writing and reading yesterday (ignoring my journal entry last night, which doesn’t really count since it’s not creative writing and the goal was some creative writing each day).  I’d like to say I took a day off for a good reason, but it was mostly just a mix of laziness and being tired from work.  Excuses, excuses.

Naturally, I felt a bit guilty about that today, and so I focused on getting some new bits added to “Joshua’s Nightmares”.  I had errands to run today in preparation of an important interview of the job variety, which meant I had to get a shower at some point.  In the process of getting ready to shower (yes, I know, there is a lot of process to me not being lazy on my weekends off), I found myself thinking about certain prominent characters from “Joshua’s Nightmares” and where they’d end up at the end of the story.  Yes, there would be closure for them, but it felt like there was more that could happen.

And that’s when an idea happened.  It met up with similar ideas, which in turn met with other similar ideas.  I realize this presents a bit of a bothersome situation, as I’m not even close to halfway done with “Joshua’s Nightmares” and I’m already thinking, “Hey, there should be a second book.”

So the real question to you writer-type people is how soon is too soon for sequel-oriented thinking?  Or is it just one of those things you should embrace as it happens?

Either way, I’m afraid to say I’ll have to stash the ideas away in my little red Moleskine for the time being.

The excitement of a writing breakthrough

Short and simple post ahead, which is probably a nice change of pace from my usual, rambling entries (which are still amazing anyway).  I am very happy to say my bit of writing for the day ended up being a small, but strong, bit of work towards “Joshua’s Nightmares”.

As it stands now, I’ve reached a solid ending point for Chapter 1.  We’ll see how much I like it in the morning, of course, but any progress at this point is good progress as far as I’m concerned.  Now for a bit of nightly reading and relaxing.