Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Looking Forward

With 2015 almost upon us, it's time to sit down and make some goals.

This week on Author's Answer, we discuss our writing goals. Mine involve settling in to my new writing room - after all the packing, moving, and oh, finishing the darn house would be helpful - and getting some editing done on the couple projects I had going before construction started. Then it's off to submissions and either editing other projects in my virtual pile or writing something new. We'll have to see how close the whole 'settling in' phase gets me to May as that's my short story writing frenzy month.

As for my usual one word resolution, let me see how the last year went. *searching posts*

2014: WRITE. *smacks forehead* Thanks to the house construction, that one was a total fail. So I'm declaring a do-over, full knowing that I won't get to dive into that resolution until spring. But hey, it's good to have goals and the one word thing really has worked for me in the past.

What's your one word for 2015?

Friday, December 19, 2014

All I Want For Christmas

Wondering what to get for Christmas for the writer in your life? This week on Authors Answer, we ponder this question and offer suggestions.

With NaNo over, writing has come to a complete standstill. However, I have stolen some time from my overbooked schedule to do a quick edit of A Broken Race before sending it back out. I've been bouncing this one around in submissions for a year and, in getting it reformatted for yet another stab at publication, I started reading the first page.

Yes, it's all downhill from there.

This novel has been around the editing block a few times. It's gone through an intensive round of critiques. It should be all shined up and pretty. It was. I swear. And yet...fresh eyes. They found a sentence on that first page that made me cringe.

And so I read a couple pages further and then put on the brakes, backed up to the beginning, and got to editing. I'm two thirds done now and looking forward to getting that one back out on the playing field.

Other than that, I have mortar all over my fingernails from installing cement board in preparation for all of the tile at the house. It's been a long and exhausting job. We have a lot of tile going in because we have radiant heat under the floors. One bathroom is tiled. Another is mostly done, and the last one has yet to be begun. Then there's the mudroom, the laundry room, the hall, the kitchen and the foyer. But let's not talk about all of those or I'll feel overwhelmed. Oh crap. Too late.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Repurposing a First Novel

This week on Authors Answer (which I forgot to post a few days ago. Oops.), we talk about Foreign Language Novels.

Also a few days ago, that I'm just now finally catching up on, author Jim C. Hines did an entertaining presentation at our NaNoWriMo regional TGIO party. He has a new book out that is also an entertaining read. Having seen him in person, the commentary on the page comes alive.

He had a fun idea with this new book, Rise of the Spider Goddess. After successfully publishing a shelf full of books, he went back and pulled out his first novel that never made it to publication. Like most of us, he know realizes that first novel sucked.

Rather than putting it back and trying to forget it ever happened, he decided to publish it as is, but now with commentary sprinkled throughout as to why it sucks. Think of it as a self-depreciating guide to what not to do. I thought it was a rather creative and productive use of an old project. We've all been there so his mistakes were easy to relate to. Learning to overcome the mortification of their existence to the point where one can laugh at them is also a good thing. If you're looking for a laugh along with the opportunity to possibly learn a few things, give it a read.

Friday, December 5, 2014

November In Review

It was an eventful November to say the least. Hectic sums it up nicely.

Your picture taking has awoken me, worthless human! Now go away so I may sleep more, and then you shall serve me more food and clean my litter box and let me out if I so choose, but I shan't be rushed in my choosing. If you do not do these things, I shall knock another glass off your counter and watch in amusement as it shatters on the tile floor. Mwhahahaha.

We now have a cat. Sort of. It decided this was its home. He had a home at one point because he showed up with a collar. But this skinny young fellow gets along well with our dog and he wasn't micro chipped or reported missing. He's a beautiful tabby, sadly not neutered or declawed, which means he has to be watched carefully because he seems to think my newly recovered couch is a scratching post.

When I sent him out with a note taped to his collar inquiring whether he had an owner, he came back without a collar. I guess that means I touched him last so now he lives here. We weren't really seeking a cat, being dog people now, but the new owner of this house does want a cat, so we're cat sitting, in our house, that isn't really our house anymore, for a guy who wants the cat. We'll enjoy him in the meantime.

The early feet of snow have melted and we're back to frozen but not covered in snow, which is normal for this time of year. This means work on the siding of the new house can continue. Hooray for that.

My unexpected two-week sleeping-on-my-writing-couch house guest has left, though my two week cold lingers with a nasty chest cough. I'm really sick of coughing.

NaNoWriMo has come to an end for another year. My goal was 10K. I ended up feeling pretty happy with my effort ending at 25K for the amount of time I had to write. Both stories I was working on have promise, they just need my full attention - which no one has right now.

Work has picked to an insane pace, as is usual with the holidays approaching. This means my days go something like this:

Wake up
Run kids around after school
Work on house
Go to bed

Occasionally there's time for a rinse, mostly it's a repeat.