6/2/2019

Man, where did May go?

Over the course of the month, I've written a short story every week, all at https://andybrokaw-stories.blogspot.com if you want to read them and haven't. The one I wrote Friday left me shaking, which I hope means it was good. It was set in a world that I already know fairly well as I have placed two unfinished novels in it. I dreamt about one of those last night and there's a decent chance that when I finish Faerie Story I will want to return to my dragonverse.

As for Faerie Story... I still haven't finished this round of Book One. I am another chapter or two from done, but like the way it's shaping up in my mind. When I finish those chapters, I'm going to jump straight into another revision because I already have a list of alterations and additions. There's only one more week left in this season of short stories, so I'm actually optimistic I'll finally have something to send the betas by the end of the month.

5/16/19

I finished the rough for the story I started this morning. It's over 3k words and I wrote them all today, so I'm trying to feel accomplished. What I'm actually feeling is lazy because I'm not editing it this evening, but it's honestly better to let it sit a while anyway.

I have been writing and not updating this blog for the last few weeks. Although I have been stalled again with Faerie Story, this is the third short story I've completed since posting here. With the last two, I spent a day writing what could either be an introduction or a full piece if I wanted to stop, then another day or two continuing. Today's story had an obvious early place to stop, but I rushed right past it because I knew the main story already and knew we hadn't gotten to it yet.

I'm also behind on my book blog. I've been reading, but not reviewing promptly. I'm thinking I may abandon my reviewing my queue and just start over with the next book I finish.

Right now, I'm going to watch something with my husband. I'd tell you what, but that hasn't been determined yet. :)

4/14/2019

Today I wrote 2,211 words. And feel frustrated with my lack of progress because they ended in such as way that commits Faerie Story Book 1 to at least two extra chapters. Clearly, I need to work on how I define accomplishment. I created multiple pages of text! (About five or six when formatted for printing.) And yes, I went in a direction that's adding material, but it's doing it in such as a way that will make the book stronger and more rememberable. So I should be happy with myself, right?

I also have a list of things to add into the book before handing it off to the betas. This means I'll probably not be handing it over before the end of the month, which puts me a month behind the imaginary schedule in my head. Again, this is not something to be upset about. I spotted things to add on my own, which implies I know what I should be doing even if I didn't do it already, and, once again, the changes will make the book better. So, yeah, spotting the problems means more work, but it's still a good thing!

In other news, I'm still on hiatus from short stories, but have decided on a theme for the official first season of the new Wording Wednesday format. It shall be Beginnings. I'll be hunting down my six prompts over the next fortnight so I'll be certain they work well together. If you have recommendations for artwork or artists, please let me know! (If the piece is by you, all the better!)

Wording Wednesday is currently on MeWe and Openbook, but I am thinking I may create a blog for it to allow people not on those networks to follow along and contribute if they wish. Eventually, Openbook communities will be visible to people without Openbook accounts, but I have no idea how far away we are from that. At present, Openbook is in alpha and still lacking a lot of features like free accounts and true public visibility.

I'm going to try to relax for the rest of today and get a jump on those new chapters tomorrow. Wish me luck!

4/8/2019

I've had a frustrating week since last I posted. I lost a day to anxiety about someone coming to fix a leaking faucet line. Then I lost a second day to the same thing because he didn't show up on the first day. Then I had a severe headache. And then I simply decided I'd rather play Smash Brothers with my son than work, because he's seventeen and doesn't ask to play with me very often anymore.

Today, most of the day was eaten by a trip to the grocery store. Yes, really. No, the trip didn't take more than an hour. But I had to gear myself up to go, then I had to decompress after unpacking everything. Then I felt I should write my newsletter, so I still haven't done any work on finishing up Faerie Story Book 1. I'm about to to do that as soon as I finish the newsletter... Although I'm feeling a little dizzy all of a sudden, so maybe not...

The bit of the newsletter that doesn't involve the stuff you can see on my other blogs is reprinted below. Cheers!

Happy Spring! (Or Autumn if you're in the Southern hemisphere...)

Spring is hard for me. It's difficult to say if it's better or worse than summer, but it's certainly in my least favorite half of the year. Between hating heat and being allergic to sunlight as well a very long list of plants, spring tends to lead to sniffling and depression. So far this year hasn't been so bad. I have lost days in the last few weeks to sinus headaches, but my mood hasn't crashed, so I'm not going to complain too much.

Clearly, I'm already having problems keeping this up weekly and that's not going to get easier as the year progresses. Therefore, my weekly newsletter is now officially a fortnightly newsletter. I'll be aiming for the second and fourth Mondays of each month.

I have also changed from a goal to write a new piece of short fiction every week. Now I am planning to do "seasons" of six weeks where I write weekly short fiction followed by six weeks in which I focus more on my novels. I'm doing this because while I was enjoying creating a new story every week, it was not the one day a week endeavor I had aimed for but something that takes up at least two or three days, which had a significant impact on my progress in my novels.

Speaking of my novels, I am very close to completing my current revision of Faerie Story Book 1. When that's done, I'll send it back to my betas. I'm debating whether I am then going to try to jump into Book 3's rough draft for the second half of Camp NaNoWriMo (it's like National Novel Writing Month except not in November) or start revising the second book. Since I want to release all three books in very close proximity to each other, I will not be publishing Book 1 until I have at least a solid second draft of the third book. I'm not going to rush all of this. It's been seventeen years in the making to get as far as I have, so another year or so isn't the end of the world but could mean producing a much superior product.

The only other thing I have to report is that my beloved Washington Capitals are heading into the Stanley Cup Playoffs again. If you don't have a favorite hockey team, or if yours didn't make the post-season, I invite you to follow the boys from DC. I'll give you two reasons. 1.) It would make me happy for them to win. And 2.) These guys known how to party every bit as awesomely as they know how to play hockey. The headlines of their madcap adventures after their first Stanley Cup win were epic, and I have no reason to believe they won't be just as stoked to do it again. Oh! And bonus reason 3.) Alex Ovechkin is one of the greatest players of all time (that's not just me being a fan, you can check out his stats) and telling future hockey-watching generations that you remember seeing him play will earn you some cred.

I'm off to write some more for you. Rock on!

4/1/2019

So... I didn't start Camp NaNo WriMo today. I need to finish this revision of Faerie Story book 1 first. I thought Saturday I'd be able to pull it off. Then Sunday I started working on the last three chapters and realized that while the final one is fine, the other two were in desperate need of being replaced by something that sucks less.

Writing is actually really easy. Writing something decent is what's hard.

So, yeah... I spent the day working on part of what will replace those chapters. It felt like it was going slowly, although I wrote 2,022 words, which isn't bad at all. My brain hasn't been working too well today and there's a leak in my kitchen that was somewhat distracting. And will be distracting tomorrow when someone shows up to repair it...

So I'm probably spending the first week of camp finishing the project that needs to be done before I can start my camp project. But my husband's planning to go on a business trip mid-month, so I'll probably manage some extra-long days later.

3/30/2019

I haven't been updating this lately because I've felt underwhelmed by my progress. There has been progress though! I've added an entire chapter and several scenes to the first book of Faerie Story and am hoping to wrap up this revision tomorrow so that I'll be free to start on a new project Monday.

Over the last two days, I've written over 3,500 words, split almost evenly between the two days. The current word count of the novel sits at 67,627. I have two more scenes to add in the next six and a half chapters along with several more sentences of description and will then be able to say I'm done with another revision.

I am still debating what I am going to do Monday. I definitely want to start something for Camp NaNoWriMo. What I'm debating is whether I really want to do the novel inspired by the floating ice bears or if I want to tackle Faerie Story Book 3.

The main argument against Faerie Story Book 3 is that I haven't revised Book 2 yet, and there's a lot about the ending that might change. But I'm thinking maybe what I need to do is go ahead and start Book 3, pretend I made changes as needed, and then revise Book 2 to contain those changes. It really doesn't seem any more muddled that way to me. In fact, it might be more clear because that will mean tackling Book 2 with a more concrete understanding of what needs to happen in it.

The main arguments for doing Book 3 are the one I just mentioned (that it would give me more clarity on what Book 2 needs to achieve) and that it's a way to make sure I don't lose Maggie's voice. Historically, I've been unable to go back to voices of characters after I've moved on from them, so that's a daunting possibility. To help combat that, I've been thinking the ice bear story would actually be written in third person, but I'm not sure if that would be enough.

Also, I've realized the ice bear story takes place in the faerielands. So the end of the entire Fairy Story trilogy could be important. (Although it takes place in another country, so maybe not.) I think I actually know the over all ending well enough to feel confident writing something that happens after it, though, especially since if any of the Faerie Story characters appear the appearances will probably be more like cameos than anything big.

I've got an entire day to think about this, so no rush...


3/19/2019

I finished a short story today, after having started it Saturday and not touched it yesterday. It's the last short story I'll be writing until May. It's a little different from my usual style, being written in third person rather than first. I enjoyed writing it though, to the point that I'm considering doing the book I'm giving next month over to in third.



You can see it over on my story blog at Andy's Stories: A Gift Returned.





I also plan to get some revising done on Faerie Story Book 1 today. I'm going back to the start to add some things that Chapter 23 made me realize I needed to add. My hope is to get through this revision of the whole book by the end of the month so that I'll be free to participate in Camp NaNo WriMo with a completely different project.



Overall, I'm feeling good about today, and that's always something to take note of and be happy about.