Wednesday, February 26, 2014

When the high wears off

I'm in the middle of after-the-fact-outlining the rough draft of Sahmara's Sunset and I hate this novel. There, I said it. It's been awhile since I've immersed myself in bringing order to a rough draft and I was hoping this point in the process would overlook me this time. Alas, I am not so fortunate.

What the hell was the potency of the sparkly-my-words-are-made-awesomesauce endorphins that I was riding high on when writing this? Yes, there are good moments, but damn, the misnaming of stuff, horrible phrasing, extra words in the middle of sentences, summary telling, and where-the-frak-was-I-going-with-this moments are overwhelming.

I brought this upon myself, I know this, having written 50k of this years ago and the dropping back in to add another 21K as time allowed with multiple year gaps between efforts. The random was sure to happen. But damn.

The saddest thing is that I read through what did exist just last October and straightened things up at little. At least I thought I did. Clearly I was in the midst of some high stress times because I screwed things up far more than an form of straightening. Towns were misnamed from one chapter to the next. People had helms and daggers and then they didn't. Inline notes made defied logic. And the thing is, I remember thinking these things over, sure I was correcting mistakes.

And the lesson in all this? When under heavy stress, step away from the keyboard.

Okay, venting over. Back to slogging through the hate to find the bits of sparkle.

Monday, February 10, 2014

So how's that resolution going?

WRITE has been working out fairly well for me. Not that I've gotten a whole lot of new writing done, but I have been doing a lot of reading, critiquing, editing and following up on submissions. So I'm calling it good progress given everything else going on in life.

The new laptop for writing and relaxing only has been working out wonderfully. Its so much easier to turn work off at night when I don't have access to my work programs right along with my relaxing ones. The separation has also done wonders for my stress level.

In addition to three shorts in edits, there are a couple in the percolator and a Sahmara's Sunset to finish. While I'm pondering changes on the shorts, I'm concentrating on outlining Sahmara's Sunset. This poor novel has been on and off the back burner so many times that it's in dire need of continuity checks and major tightening of the plot threads.

I'm not a big fan out outlining up front, but I do enjoy going through a rough draft and outlining after the fact. Because of the Frankenstein factor on this on and off again novel, I'm making a list of all the questions that pop up that I'm pretty sure I never got around to answering as well as making sure I have the correct character details in my notes. Creating a chapter by chapter summary also helps me get the whole story back in my head so I can better attack the draft and make it something I wouldn't mind showing someone. Eventually.

Anyone else still keeping up with a resolution?

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Another short story published

Nothing makes my morning like seeing one of my stories in print. Check out A Little Thing Like Death in Issue 11 of Isotropic Fiction

Bill wants to know why Kate never returned from Cedar Springs Revival Center. What he finds doesn't make the truth any easier to bear.

Saturday, February 1, 2014

January Reading

Because I still have a bunch of books beside my bed begging to be read and several on my computer...I went to my Kindle library to find something to read. What the heck is wrong with me?

I found the sequel to Atlantis Gene that I'd read last year waiting there for me, begging to be read. Who am I to say no? A.G. Riddle's,  The Atlantis Plague is a fast paced continuation of the first book. I finished it in three days. This thriller picks up right up where book one left off and leads nicely into the final book in the trilogy while still being a complete story - which is a wonderful thing, because I absolutely hate the sudden cut endings that some trilogy books suffer from. Thriller, mystery a bit of romance, all in a tasty science fiction shell.

Then it was off to more book crack...because I said was stopping, but my local book dealer found this and pointed it out to me, and yeah, it somehow ended up at my house. Sherrilyn Kenyon's Seize the Night turned into a twenty-four hour readingfest. Somewhere in there I got some sleep and a little work done. Having read the first three books in this series, and then the last, jumping into the middle was fun in that I happened to pick the book that included the single event alluded to in the final book that I'd really wondered how that had come to pass. That's my considerate way of putting it without any spoilers rather than an major effort to be vague. So yes, book 7, that's where that happens. I'm sure I'll succumb to the rest of the series eventually. I'm weak like that.

Next up was The Queen's Vow by C. W. Gortner. On occasion I like to take a break from the paranormal, fantasy and sci-fi and wander into historical fiction. This well researched book was a lovely portrayal of a woman trying to please her country, husband and her God. Mostly it showcased how the church manipulated everyone from royalty to pauper and how many countless thousands lost their lives due intolerance. That aspect was quite tragic, but there was also romance, and lasting friendship to balance out the betrayals and hardships.

Jenny and the Jaws of Life by Jincy Willett has graced reading stack for a while. I picked it up while on a David Sedaris kick a while back and it got lost in my workspace for over a year before I recently rediscovered it while on cleaning frenzy. This collection of short stories is best described as: off the wall, touching, silly, sad, laugh-out-loud hilarious, and thought-provoking. An eclectic array of characters deal with life, death, marriage and everything in between. It was the perfect book to keep in my car to read in between shuffling kids around...until I lost it by taking it out of my car. Oops.