Wednesday, April 30, 2008

There are days I want to quit

I'm irritated with myself, mostly. Project 3 has staggered to a halt, mostly because I'm beset by the unshakeable notion that I'm doing it wrong. And even worse, I can't say just WHAT is wrong with it. The best I can do is say that the "flavor" is wrong. And being that I'm not a great cook (my family eats many things out of boxes), I don't know what spice I need to add to make it behave the way I want.

My attempt at a solution is to read some things that may be in a similar style as what I'm trying to write. I'm hoping they'll jump start my brain, show me what's been done before, let me sample someone else's flavor.

That sounded vaguely dirty.

And I just spent an hour looking for a decent lolcatz picture. Someone else is welcome to do better.

Saturday, April 26, 2008


You ever have that feeling that you're on the verge of something great but it's not...quite....there yet? I feel that way about project 3. The potential is there, if I can just...figure out what it is that I'm missing. I think the plot is good. I think the characters are good. The premise is great. But there's something in the tone I just haven't captured yet.

The closest explanation I can come up with is: I am aiming for a steampunk-ish world. I have the steam, I'm seriously lacking in punk. And I'm not even sure if that's an accurate complaint.

I am seriously considering going back to do a major revise on the first chapters I already have done before I can move on. I swore I wouldn't do it, but it may become necessary.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Easy Peasy

So my goal for the week (set just this morning! Better late than never) is to clear 20K words on project 3. I started this morning at 18,400, with the intention of writing 800 words today and tomorrow. Well, I got on a roll today and wound up with 1,400 words, so I only have 200 more to go to hit my goal tomorrow! Whee!

No new news on the submission front. I sent out a few new queries this week (got a 24-hour rejection on one of them)and we'll see what happens.

Tomorrow marks the 6-week mark on the partial that has been out the longest. That was the one that I sent snail mail. I remain firmly convinced that bad news will come in my SASE, but good news will come in e-mail. I'll keep you posted on whether or not my theory pans out.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Hail the Conquering Hero

Or something.

I did finally beat chapter 7 into submission. It was a great victory for writers everywhere. Hear me roar! (Ok, not really. Mostly, we just agreed to call it a draw and reconvene at a later time to resume hostilities)

I have also decided that I am officially moving my "no response=no interest" query into the rejection pile. The agent listed a two week turn around on queries, and I gave them six, so it's an official no. Other than that, I've heard nothing. I need to sit down and look at my list and see who else I want to query next. I'm running out of e-mail lovers, and I'll be doing snail mail queries soon. (the cheapskate part of me was hoping to avoid this, but ah well)

I took kiddo to the park over the weekend, and it was the most perfect warm/cool day (I don't know how else to describe it. And I'm a writer. That's not good). And all it did was reinforce my longing to be able to take a laptop and go somewhere like that, and sit in the sun and write to my heart's content. (Though it should be noted that the realist side of me is scolding me for the sunburn I would most likely receive. I do not tan.)

Maybe someday. When I'm rich and famous. Or homeless and deranged. Whichever comes first.

Friday, April 18, 2008


I managed to write a whopping 1200 words today! Whee!

I was struggling with chapter 7, so I decided to just have a character walk around and see what he bumped into. So he took his walk, and I followed him like a literary voyeur...

And I realized that one of the elements I was working in turned out WAY creepier than I'd imagined. I'm a little worried about what else might be lurking in my head, unbeknownst to me.

Thursday, April 17, 2008


I admit, this has been my worst week as far as writing goes. It just seems that things keep getting in the way.

Today's excuse is that I spent half the day running around getting my car licensed, and postal packages picked up, and doctor appointment-ing. The good news is that I really am sick, not crazy, and that there might be medicine to help. If it doesn't help, I'll be getting steriod shots every six months. Feel my enthusiasm.

But with only a half day spent at work, it meant I actually had to DO work instead of secretly writing.

I swear, tomorrow I will write. I don't know what I'll write yet, but something will go on paper. Or screen, as it were.

And did I mention that I got my picture taken with Jim Butcher?

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Night of Squeeness!

Ok, no one is allowed to hassle me over not writing for the last couple of days. You know why? Because I got to see Jim Butcher tonight!

It's the second one of Jim's book signings I've been to, and even though I've heard a couple of the stories twice now, they're still hilarious and he seems to be a genuinely great guy to be around.

I got all books signed (including Gita's, she'll be happy to know), and while I still have an entire list of things I would have liked to say to him but didn't, I DID manage to get the courage to ask for a picture!

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Gods Bless Beta Readers

In particular, today, bless Theo and Chie. In a matter of an hour or so, they've managed to pinpoint things that are going wrong already in the first few chapters, AND add a new character that's going to add an unbelievable new element to this story. It's so amazing what a fresh pair of eyes can do, as well as people to just listen to me babble, and bounce ideas off of.

And to my utter joy, the problems they've found are easily corrected, and the new character is easily inserted without major rewrites. I am sans child, this weekend, and while hubby is sleeping today, I may rework those first six chapters to add the things needed, then move on with chapter 7. Perhaps, when I see the changes in the flesh so to speak, chapter 7 won't seem nearly so daunting and I can get it underway.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008


I finished chapter 6 today, coming in above my word count goal. But I've been pondering something.

I don't feel emotionally attached to this new project. I mean, yes, my heart pounds at the exciting places like it is supposed to, and I love my characters and the world they're in but... I don't know what it is.

I wrote project 2 in a flurry of inspiration, scrambling to get it all down on paper while it was still hot in my brain. Sure, I outlined the chapters first, but even that was a trial and error process, figuring out what worked and what didn't. I stumbled a lot, and blundered my way through unknown places, but it came out good in the end.

With project 3, I made extensive notes, did research, made most of my outline way in advance. And now, I more feel like I'm following a map with the trail well marked. I don't know that it's a bad feeling, per se, just different than my previous experiences.

It's also possible that I feel this way because, while I wrote project 2 only when the inspiration hit me, I'm forcing myself to write on project 3 whether I "feel" it or not. It's going to do wonders for my word count and progress, but I wonder if it adds some distance as well.

I suppose part of me has believed that I would eventually find the method that "worked" for me, and I would stick to the same process for every book that followed. But maybe it will always be a work in progress, and what worked for project 5 won't work for project 8 and project 189 will have to be done in some completely off-the-wall manner.

Meh. I'm rambling. It's the allergy meds talking, maybe.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

And on and on and...

Honestly, there's very little to report. I hit my writing goal today (almost doubled it). Seems I either blow it out of the water, or don't write at all during the day. I'm sure that means something, but I'm not sure what.

I'm about 2/3s of the way through chapter 6, still moving on nicely. Even more importantly, I can already see things I want to go back and flesh out. It always makes me feel better when I can see the room for editing, even before I get to that point. Gives me hope for the future. (and in the case of project 2, it gave me 33,000 more words that I desperately needed)

I just have to keep reminding myself, waiting is not unproductive time so long as I am writing something new. And if project 2 doesn't sell, in the end, project 3 might. Or 4. Or 12. Or whatever.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Sunday Funny

No, not my cat. Theo's cat. I needed the giggle.

funny pictures
moar funny pictures

Friday, April 4, 2008


So, to console myself for the reject, I sent another query to a new agent. Only to have it rejected in less than two minutes.


Friday blahs

I didn't want to work today. I didn't want to write today. All I wanted was to be out of my office and somewhere else. It probably had to do with the fact that the sun was shining for the first time in like forever.

Of course, when I get home, I find a lovely rejection e-mail from one of my partial submissions. This one has me kinda down. The first rejection wasn't so bad, because I know that particular agent doesn't truly rep what I've written. But this one... This one has me questioning my skill, my plot, my characters, everything. And the agent didn't even say anything negative! Oh the neurosis one standard form rejection letter can breed. It's a wonder any writer is sane.

I still have two partials out, and two queries. One of the queries and one of the partials I only sent recently, so I figure I'm in for a long wait on those. And the other query is one of no interest = no response, so I figure another two weeks and I can mark it off my list as a no. And of course, I have an entire list of agents to query, after this. It's all part of the process.

I'll try to keep working on project 3. I know that these rollercoasters of emotion are par for the course, and that I shouldn't take anything as a nail in the coffin or anything. Knowing it doesn't make the disappointment hurt any less, though.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Sweet Bliss

I did blast through my writing goal today, but it was on WoW writing, so I have no progress to report on Project 3. However, any writing at all is spectacular, considering that I had Small Favor calling to me from my desk drawer all day at work.

I adore Jim Butcher. He is what I want to be when I grow up. And if you have never read any of the Dresden Files books (Storm Front is the first one) I'm not sure we can be friends anymore.

And if urban fantasy isn't your forte, or you prefer more traditional fantasies, you should try out his Codex Alera series. The first of this is Furies of Calderon. I'm just kicking myself that it took me so long to pick those up.

Ok, this is my author-crush-geek-post for a while. I tore through Small Favor in a few hours, and I may go back and read it again. Lotta stuff happened, and I want to make sure I can take it all in.