Friday, December 31, 2004

The End is Near!

Okay, the end of the year is here! I've finished up the last of my work for the year, with Written in the Sand 1 more or less done (boy is that ending going to need a lot of work!). I have Vision nearly ready to go up. Russ is going to write up Interview questions for me, including some from the people at FM. It's going to be fun, I think. I'll do that early tomorrow and then post the new Vision tomorrow afternoon.

2004 went quickly. I had a good year, averaging a sale a month plus four more 'placed' pieces, like the new essay at A Picture's Worth. There's a problem with the picture that the moment, but I hope that we have it cleared up soon.

Beyond that, it's just been a fairly nice evening. Russ and I are going to go do our annual 'watch shows game' and have fun!

So see you all in 2005! Have a good New Year!

Saturday, December 25, 2004

Merry Christmas

I'm having a wonderful night. Russ and I watched one of his favorite movies While You Were Sleeping which is a really sweet story, and Christmas related, too. Earlier, we spent part of the night visiting a few friends around town. Tomorrow we'll spend a little time with my parents, but for the most part the day will be ours. We'll probably watch shows, play games, give the cats and dog their new toys, and eat a lot of food. There will be a few presents, but neither of us are really big into the present part of things. Besides, I got mine last week with the wonderful trip to Squaw Creek Wildlife Refuge.

I hope everyone else is having a good night. I'm going to go take a nice long relaxing bath and get some sleep.

My Internet Connection seems to be a lot better again. We'll see if it holds up for a few more days. I have work to do!

But not tonight and not tomorrow. I'll do a little writing (Written in the Sand is going very well), and just have a good time.

Have a happy holiday!

Tuesday, December 21, 2004

Almost done!

I'm quite stunned to realize that I'm almost caught up on everything for the year. Really. Oh sure, there are some niggling little things like Vision still out there, and everything I want to do for FM -- but the writing is virtually caught up. I'm working on my last two writing projects for the year. I'll have the editing for Freedom and Fame done fairly quickly, and while I'm not making any real headway on Written in the Sand, I have faith that I'll get there.

I need to put together two more submissions for the year, but I have some stuff piled up to go back out, so I don't think that will be a problem. Having gotten so much done already has given me confidence that I'll get the rest. Probably a bad thing. LOL.

The weather here is very cold, but there's no snow and it's apparent there won't be any before the holidays. This is normal -- it's really rare that we get snow this early in the year. Most of our worst storms are in March, right at the end of the season. But a litle snow wouldn't hurt.

And that's it for me tonight. I have other work to get to!

Friday, December 17, 2004


I just finished the Dancer outline. Yay!

The mail came with the new AIO contract.

Russ is not teaching a class tonight and should be home soon. Food....

In the meantime, I'm going to pull up the last outline and see if I can't get it jumpstarted again. It would be nice to have it finished and then use the rest of the month to write the last half of Written in the Sand.

Yes, things are looking a little better. I was starting to think that I wouldn't get nearly this much done before the end of the year, so I'm already much happier. We might even have a little snow tomorrow, which would be nice as well.

I've been working on the Freedom and Fame edits, and they're nearly done, too. Yay! I suddenly have the feeling I am going to achieve something!

Wednesday, December 15, 2004

Running out of time!

I don't think I've ever felt like I have quite this much to do at the end of a year, and I think this might be the one where I don't quite get everything done. Most of this is because of new responsiblities -- Dragon Tooth takes a lot of time and effort -- so I'm not going to berate myself for not getting my entire list finished.

In fact, I have purposely made myself step away and do other things rather than trying to drive myself crazy. I've even been reading books -- something I have fallen woefully behind on in the last few years. I want to read more.

My list of must do things for today is pretty short. I've edited 1.5 chapters for DT. I worked a little bit on an article for Vision and I need to get the rest of that work all set up and contracts out. I have a list of addresses for cards. Need to find the mailing labels and print them out.

But I am tired. I've been tired for a week or more now, and all I really want to do is curl up in bed and sleep under nice warm blankets for a few days.

Maybe in a couple weeks....

Tuesday, December 14, 2004

Things done... and not done!

The zoo site is up. There are over 1000 pictures there. I will gradually add in the information about different animals. Getting the pictures up, though, was the important part.

Zette's Pictures from the Henry Doorly Zoo Website

I still have far too many things on my list to do and I am running out of time. So why did I stop and do the picture site? Because it's almost the end of the year and for months I had been talking about doing this. I even bought a new website for it. There comes a point where you just have to do something for yourself that isn't writing-related.

The kitties are better. I'm really surprised that they've all come out of this so well. Pip is back to terrorizing poor Wind, so all must be well in the world.

I have projects that need to be done. Vision is the most important at this point, and I need a few more articles for it. I think everyone is worn down this year.

And my other projects that I still need to finish?

I'm working on the editing of Freedom and Fame which is the sixth book of the Dark Staff series. It will be the last novel I edit this year. If I do about fifteen pages a day I'll have it done a bit early. Seems wise to me.

The outline for Serendipity Blues keeps stalling out on me. I know the basics. I just can't seem to get the story to fall together properly. I'll get there.

The outline for Dancer is going well, but then it's based on an older novel and I know the sequence of events.

I haven't even looked at Written in the Sand. I need to start working on that stuff.

I have been wearing down the submission pile for Dragon Tooth, with a second novel acceptance yesterday.

I have a list of things to do for Forward Motion and I need to get that stuff lined up, too.

Ack. Looking at the list now has me worried. I think I'll go work on the Dancer outline for a while. It, at least, is moving.

Friday, December 10, 2004

Crazed Days

That's ice on a tree. I really like that shot.

Russ is off to New York on an emergency tech job. He should be home Sunday, we hope. I'll know more in a few hours when I talk to him.

Most of the cats are getting better. Kwi is still miserable and so is Cricket. I'm surprised to say tht Willow is looking much better. I feared we were going to lose her, but she seems to be up and moving and even eating a little again.

The writing, of course, suffered through the bout with Kitty problems. Last night I finally finished a new Sangre story and today I've been working on the Resolutions of Trust outline, and I might even have it done before I go to bed -- about 6-8k of outline, which is kind of a middle of the road length for me.

I've finished the final edits on Eliora's World and turned it in. I'm about half way through the first edits for Freedom and Fame, but considering I did 100 pages last night, I'm not too worried.

I would like to get the outline done tonight so that I can mark another thing off of my rather long and annoying list. There are three outlines, and one of them is going to be very difficult. I might end up with just doing the high points for it, and reworking the outline into something deeper next year. Or maybe, if Russ and I can find some time to sit down and talk it out, I might get more.

I have a great deal of work to do at FM, too. I'm doing some reorganizational work, and I think it's going to take some long, dedicated time to get a few of these things done. I'm looking forward to the results, but not to the work.

Overall, things are looking better. The house is a pit. I might get some of it cleaned up while Russ is gone, or I might just throw myself into the writing and not come back out until Russ gets home. It might be my only hope of getting everything on my list done.

21 days left in the year. Ack.

Monday, December 06, 2004


I have several sick cats right now. Some little kitty virus has gone through most of the herd, and some of them are pretty miserable. I've discovered that when Willow is ill she reverts to wild cat, and that just makes it worse. She's coughing and sneezing and gasping, but won't even consider letting me pick her up, let alone give her medication. Kwi and Pip have been in and out of the vet's often in the last week. If Cricket doesn't improve soon, she's going to go. I don't know what we'll do about Willow and Maynard. At least Wind is improving. And Pip is better. So is Kwi, somewhat. And the Vet said to mix the antibiotic into their food, so if I can get some of them to start eating again, we might have a chance.

Anyway, that's part of the reason why I'm not around here much right now. This is really wearing me down. And making it hard to concentrate on anything at all. There are now only two who are in really bad -- Cricket and Willow -- and if I can work with them, I think all will be well.

And I'll be back around soon. I'm trying to work through the last stage of my 2004 writing. I have far too much stuff piled up, but I'm getting there.

As long as I don't go crazy first.

Thursday, December 02, 2004

A million words

I made it through NaNo with190,165 words, about 40k of which is utter crap. I hope I can sort it all out later.

This evening I hit 1,000,004 words for 2004, which was nice.

I just watched the first four episodes of the final season of Buffy, and I'm having a very hard time stopping here. But I'm tired!

My leg is better, my cat seems to be getting better (we're really worried about Pip), and my mind is not on anything reasonable at all. I have very many things to get done, even though I worked hard through most of today and got a ton of stuff done already.

I think I'm going to go sleep, though. Sleep and get up tomorrow and work on other things that need to be done. Eventually I will either catch up or run out of year.

I thought I should get back to posting here, though. I need to recover from NaNo. This is a good start.

Wednesday, November 24, 2004

Working my way through everything!

The convention was great. I had a wonderful time. My publisher introduced me at the opening ceremonies as a kick-ass sf writer, so it was hard for anything to be bad after that. I met a lot of people, talked to many old friends, and had a wonderful time! It was a great drive down and a wonderful ride back.

However, not only did it slow me up on NaNo, it put me behind on everything else in life. And I came back with an injured leg that is just giving me hell. Nothing serious, just painful. So much so that I'm skipping turkey tomorrow and doing a pot roast instead. Much easier to cook.

I'm never going to get really caught up, but I'm doing better.

In the good news department -- I have a shot at one of the upcoming Double Dog books (Yard Dog Press 'Ace Double' publication). They still have a few other books in the line up first, but Selina wants me to do half of an sf one. Yay!


The day after I got back I found that I have apparently sold Ada Nish Pura to AIO. The contracts will be arriving, so nothing is absolutely set, but it looks good!

Life is good! What a great way to end out the year!

Much celebrating and general merriment.

Monday, November 15, 2004

Yes, hello....

Yes, I've badly neglected this blog this month. NaNo and all that, you know. But I haven't posted in my NaNo blog for the last couple days, either. I've just been far too busy.

Right now I am waiting to see if Russ makes it home before he goes to teach class tonight. If not, then I'll find something to eat and get back to work. Darkness Falls has reached a very interesting spot, and while the writing is slow, the story is interesting. I just don't want to jump into his part if Russ is going to show up with food. (grin)

It looks less likely, being a quarter to seven now. So I think some soup or something is in order for the night.

I am going to a convention this coming weekend.

It'll be good to get out for a little while, even if it does play havoc with my NaNo project. It already is -- I have a number of things that must be done first, so the NaNo work is falling a bit behind. Maybe I'll get caught up after the convention and maybe I'll just slow down and slide into the end of the year. (grin)

But right now, I think there's some food calling to me....

Thursday, November 11, 2004

And Onward!

I have finished my first NaNo novel (Bad Connections, 106,042 words) and started in on Darkness Falls. Right now it's a bit difficult because my brain hasn't quite moved from the Bad Connections feel to this one, which is completely different.

I'm almost purposely slowing down in order to get other things caught up. If I get caught up... well, I might pick up and run again and I might not. I love NaNo, but I do have a lot of other duties to handle.

Right now my plans are to write about 5k a day from here to the end of November. I might push that a bit here this week because I will have about 4 days with only a few hundred words as I head to the convention.

So expect me to not be all here again for a while. (grin) I'm having a great time, though!

Monday, November 08, 2004


Yes, I'm a bit behind here, aren't I? Well, it is NaNo month, and all my free time is going into the NaNo novel -- which just hit 80k in 7 days, so no complaints there.

In fact, it has been a remarkably wonderful, quiet week. Very few problems anywhere. I've been watching other groups implode and explode and get very messy over the election, and I have to say that I'm very grateful the people at FM are wise enough to know that not everything in life is about politics, war and religion. Like I've said before, the people at FM have come to the site with a specific interest in mind, and they're not there to berate and lecture others about their political (etc.) beliefs.

I've seen some nasty disagreements at different sites and watched people who had been parts of groups for a long time, leave in disgust. What I did not see, not in a single one of these cases, was anyone change their mind by the arguments. I didn't even see anyone say they'd been undecided and were influenced by what they read.

And the same thing happens with religion and discussion about the War in Iraq. There are other places that welcome such discussions and revel in the gory shouting matches, but not at FM. We're there to help people learn to write better, and I don't care if you backed Kerry, Bush or your mother for president.

And again, thank you to the FM people who kept all their discussions calm and have been wonderful during this difficult year.

Thursday, November 04, 2004

Good writing

Tried to get in yesterday, but nothing seemed to want to work, and I didn't have the 'time' to sit around playing with it. (grin)

Yes, the writing is going well. I am no longer worried that I won't make enough words per section -- almost all of them have gone over. I'm inching up to 45,000 words tonight. I'm taking a break now because I need to go eat something and this is a good break point.

The story is going well, too. I had trouble on the third day of writing, and I'll likely end up editing out a lot of that days' work when I'm to the editing part.

So, just checking in. I have snippets in my NaNo blog. I'm pretty happy, over all.

Time to go make dinner.

Monday, November 01, 2004

Well into the first day of NaNo

I'm taking a break for dinner (have to eat to take meds anyway), and to check on anything that has to be done before I go back in for the last six hour stretch of the first day. I've just topped 10,000 words, so I'm not too worried about word count at this point. And I've really fallen into the story, which is nice.

I love the first day of NaNo. Lots and lots of writing. My count generally drops off after the first day, so I have fun while I can.

Don't expect anything coherent from me for the next few days, though.

And off to do more work so I can get back to writing!

Sunday, October 31, 2004

The Countdown!

It's down to the last few hours before NaNo. I really have about everything done. I have Vision ready to go up, I have two outlines written. I've posted this week's 2YN and done all the updates for the site.

I will not have the Dancer outline done before NaNo, but I don't need it anyway. I might try to finish a short story tonight, though, just to get it off the list. I think I may have too much stuff to finish up in December! (grin)

Beyond all that, things are calm and quiet here. I went over and checked the other house out today, just to make sure all is well. When I came back, a couple of my strays were 'playing penguin' outside my window -- crouching on their hind legs, their front paws held up. In a black and white cat, it looks like a penguin, and we've had a lot of black and white cats, so the name has stuck for this kind of behavior. Anyway, it was cute. I gave them extra treats tonight.

I have a couple more things to do around the house, like make my own dinner. But then I'll be heading over to the FM NaNo Chat room for the duration. I'll likely be living there for a few days.


We're almost there! Yay!

Friday, October 29, 2004

Writing About Writing

Without a Fear of Words came out today. So, I've been busy updating my website and listing it at various places -- like this. Amusing how this stuff keeps turning up. A good couple days, though!

Russ is off to New York tonight. He'll be back on Tuesday. I don't intend to do much except prepare for NaNo and do NaNo. I've gotten a lot of site stuff done today, and I've nearly finished the work with Vision as well. Updated my site, answered some DT email -- and now I'm ready to sit down and work on the Dancer outline.

I did mention the Dancer outline, right? The one that I shouldn't be doing since I still have two other unfinished outlines as well? Years ago I wrote a series of 8 books called Devlin's Team. Dancer is the first of them. Interesting story, but as you can imagine, the prose sucks. So I'm just writing out the events, adding a bunch of new things, and making a nice phase outline out of it. I don't know if I can have it done before NaNo, but if I do, I'd be tempted to make this my second novel on the list.

But that's why I'm working so hard to get everything else done early. I want to just wallow in this story for a while. Enjoy it.

Oh, and I'm just a few hundred words from dropping below the 200,000 words needed to make 1,000,000 for the year. Going to be a tight couple months between now and the end of the year, but I think I can do it.

Right now, though, I need to go do my other journal. Then, maybe, I can just sit down and write!

Thursday, October 28, 2004

Yay! A Sale!

I just received word that I've made a second chapbook sale to Yard Dog Press. Yay! This is for Star Bound, a three story collection of about 20,000 words. The only problem is that I need to get the edits done and back to them right away. They want them by the end of November, but we all know that I'm going to be a little... sidetracked (?) during the coming month, right?

Besides, there aren't many changes at all. I think I can have them all done tonight and the material in the mail tomorrow before Russ leaves for New York, or no later than next Wednesday when he comes back.

Anyway, it's nice to have a sale like this!

Now if I can just get the edits and Vision done!

Wednesday, October 27, 2004


That's from the ruins at Mesa Verde. I've been stumbling across a good amount of my pictures from there, and pretty soon I'll put together a set of pages for my new web site.

We're drawing awfully close to NaNo!

I've done something silly -- made a NaNo Blog. I think it's going to be fun. And it will give me 'someone' to talk to in November, because from the looks of things, Russ isn't going to be around very much! He'll be in New York the first of the month, Indiana the end of the month, and he not only has his day job, but classes to teach four days a week for most of the rest of the month. The only time I'm likely to see much of him is on that middle of the month trip we're taking to Oklahoma City.

I've gotten a good amount of Vision put together today. I'll do more after I've slept. I have done a couple long rejections, explaining a few problems I saw in novels, and hoping that helps them in the future. I've done a little reading, picked up a few things, and generally just not gotten too fired up about anything I should be doing.

Maybe tomorrow. It's 4am, and I really think that's late enough for tonight. Time for sleep, and then tomorrow I really seriously honestly truly have to get some work done. (grin)

Tuesday, October 26, 2004

One week to go....

Look at that. One week to NaNo.

I have my outline done. I am so looking forward to writing Bad Connections. I love working with Elias Singer and Nicholas St. Jude, my two undercover cops in an alternate near future where LA has been nearly destroyed by quakes. I think writing this one is going to be great fun.

Will I do a second novel this year as well? Maybe. Depends on how the first one does. And I do have another finished outline if I decide to. I might even have a third one so that I could have a choice.

Or maybe I'd do what I've done before and just 'fly without a net' for the second book. Those are often fun, too.

Work in general is going pretty well. I've been working through the slush pile for DT at a good rate. A couple possibles, but I need to some reworking before I can accept them. I have Vision all nicely lined up. Chat is down at FM, but I've arranged for it to be returned to us about Wednesday.

I'm starting to feel fired up about NaNo. Good thing, with it so close. It'll be nice to throw myself into the writing stuff for a week or so, at least!

Tonight, though, I think I'm going to kick back and relax for a while. I've been very tired lately, and I think a few more days of 1000 words and just reading isn't a bad idea. I'll go into crazed writer mode soon enough!

Monday, October 25, 2004

Working at things

The outline for Resolutions of Trust is going pretty well. Poor Emil hasn't quite accepted that the only way he's going to get out of this mess is to kill his wife, though she's already made it plain that no one is safe if she thinks they're going to be a problem for her during this crisis. We've already seen one person take a leap from a building top -- and not entirely their idea, either.

And then there are the FBI people asking around and trying to get him to come to their side -- but he's not ready to make that kind of a target out of himself, either.

It's an odd story. The outline is moving slowly, but that's all right. I'm purposely slowing down for these last few days before NaNo. I need to get some editing done over the next few days and line up a couple submissions for November. Beyond that... not much I need to worry about until 12:01am on November 1st.

While reading through submissions for DT today, I found that I may be far too sensitive to 'was' statements. The moment I see one, I immediately begin to rewrite the line to take it out. No other passive voice wordings affect me in this way. And yes, I know that a 'was' statement is not always passive voice, but it doesn't matter to this odd affliction!

There is something else that I think is weak writing, and that's repetition of a word, either in the same sentence or in the same paragraph. This obviously doesn't apply to every word. Usually it's a bit of description or a noun. The storm, blowing in from the east, dropped rain all during that stormy day. We tried to out race the storm, but by midnight the storm had caught up with us again. Stuff like that, though usually not quite so blatant.

The two of them can ruin a story, no matter how interesting it might otherwise be. They are both usually invisible to the writer, though, until it's pointed out. Holly Lisle threatened to remove the W-A-S letters from my keyboard not too long ago. I also often find the repetition in my own work and grimace as I try to rework the sentences.

And that makes me think about NaNo and not worrying about such things. I'm not sure what I expect out of this year's NaNo project. I am looking forward to the Singer and St. Jude novel, though. NaNo may be insane, but it suits me. (grin)

Sunday, October 24, 2004

A few changes in the blog

Just checking this out to see if the changes took.

There are other things I should be doing -- but then, there are always other things to do.

Is it November yet?

I have my second outline done. I even have a good amount of Vision completed. I'm not used to being this far ahead. It's unnatural.

I still have two more outlines to work on. One of them is giving me trouble, and I don't really know why. I want to write the book, but getting into the story is not easy for some reason. I know what happens, I just can't quite get the characters and events to line up for me to do it.

Except, of course, the moment I said that I started getting ideas for one of the outlines, and I'm now two hours later. Hey, whatever works.

What hasn't worked the last couple days is my head. We're having massive odd weather changes here, and I've been suffering through some unusually bad headaches for it. I slept a good part of the day and I'm still tired. So I'm heading off to bed again and get some rest.

I got the 2YN class stuff posted, at least.

Friday, October 22, 2004

As NaNo inches closer....

I have a workable outline for Darkness Falls now. It's only 150 points, but the story itself is all laid out. I think I'm going to have trouble getting the ending to feel important enough, but we'll see when I get there.

Vision work is going well. Really. The 24th issue is almost ready to go together. Editing done, copy editing done, most of the articles actually in my hands... it's good!

And then I get hit by a weird stupid problem.... For the last two hours we've been trying to figure out why the County site that I do isn't showing properly. I do the upload. I have the proper file names. Everything looks good on my end. I check the upload. It's fine. No one else can get it.

Well, you know, two things make a difference. One is that they changed the site name. Okay, that makes a difference... but more than that, the server people moved the entire site and didn't bother to tell anyone. In fact, I've been uploading to the old site, and no one bothered to tell me that it was no longer in use.

So now I'm trying to figure out how much material they don't have up, because I have NO IDEA when they did the change and no one seems willing to tell me. It's 5:30pm and no one is around, either.

I am beginning to think that I'm going to have to wipe out the entire site and upload again. I've been doing this site since 1997. That's a lot of pages, but I sure as hell don't want to go through page after page and make sure it's all there.

Argh. I'm waiting for Russ.

Thursday, October 21, 2004


I feel like there ought to be choirs singing the Hallelujah Chorus right now.

I have found my answers to Darkness Falls. Not only do I have a second character, I know that her pieces will be presented as journal entries in a computer. Nothing long -- just pieces into insights as she tries to reconcile her survival with the loss of so much, and understand her place in the future -- and view the two human groups vying for power.

But tonight another thought occurred to me -- or, at least, finally became articulate.

Survival just to survive is barbaric. I don't want my humans to look forward to barbarism.

So I started thinking about what it is that makes humans not always barbarians. It's more than just the culture from which they came, because we have so many human cultures that it's impossible to claim any single one as the piece that keeps us all from barbaric backsliding.

What is it that groups like street gangs give up when they turn to the power of guns? When was the last time you heard of a gang member quoting even one of their own to any purpose? They have no past or future. So they just act for today.

Personally, I think we are not barbarians because the past talks to us. We can 'hear' Homer, Plato, Locke, Kant, Augustine, and Darwin. Even many societies that never developed the written word of their own have, at this point, been transcribed as best they can.

Those who don't read history are destined to repeat it, right? My people may have lost Earth, but that doesn't mean they have lost their past. It was one of those true 'duh' moments.

And then I started comparing that to what I had created in my alien society. Is it possible they don't have written language? They have a scientific notation... but not symbols for writing common words. They have created a strict hierarchy of status to avoid chaos, and into that system an occasional 'Holy Man' will bring enough change to keep the world from becoming completely stagnant.

And now one of my humans has taken on that role. He doesn't quite understand what it is he's bringing to the aliens, being rather preoccupied with helping is own people survive and convincing some of them not to fight him.

It probably sounds boring as hell. But it's exciting to write up the outline and see if I can't introduce at least a little of the philosophy into the action.

Oh, and that second POV character? She's the only surviving communications officer from the ship. She's been trained to deal in words, and her very act of writing down the history of what happens from the time Earth is destroyed has a significant symbolism.

Wednesday, October 20, 2004

Are you listening...

You know, there are days when maybe I should listen more to what I tell others.

For the last few weeks I've been frantic to get things done before NaNo. The last few days I've barely been able to get any sleep -- the minute I turn off the light I suddenly remember all the things that I meant to do. Vision is top of the list right now, of course. I spent all day working on the upcoming issue, and I don't feel that I'm any closer. I have a glitch in my Excel file and merge for the contracts. I still have articles to edit and I have not even begun to put the issue together yet. That last part really isn't hard once I get all the rest of it done, but I need those contracts to go out! I think I'm going to just have to do them by hand tomorrow. It means more time, but....

But that's not what this was supposed to be about, although in some ways that's exactly what I'm talking about.

I have not yet done the final little bit of work on Ada Nish Pura and printed it off to go out. Instead, I spent all day working on Vision. I wrote close to 4000 words today, but none of it was fiction. It's been like that for about a week -- little bits of fiction shoved in between all the other things, and all along this NaNo is coming! feel over everything I work on.

I love NaNo. I have great fun just setting everything else aside for at least the first week and writing. But I have to have everything caught up in order to do that, and right now it's still looking a bit iffy. Vision, FM, DT -- if I wasn't so new at DT, I'd have the schedule for that down a bit better.

My reading has gone to hell again. It's always the first thing that drops by the wayside when I run out of time. That and the tiny bit of TV I watch. Although, to be honest, I watched the pilot episode to 21 Jump Street tonight. I did it as a purposeful break from the I must get this done! feeling that I've let run my life lately.

Because, well, here's the deal.... Nothing I do is so important that if I don't get it done on time it's really going to matter. I know that and it doesn't bother me. I'm involved in a lot of neat things, and I donate 3/4's of my time to stuff like FM, Vision, Estand -- and even DT won't be paying until I start getting some stuff in production. I like doing the kind of work I do, and spending time with writers.

But I start making it more important than it is sometimes, and that leads to madness.

Writing is the most important thing I do. It may not be what I do best, and it may not be important to the wider world, but in my place writing is my goal. Sometimes I let that get lost, though. Even when I write every day, it doesn't mean that I have committed more than some finger movement to the work. Did I make 1000 words? Good enough.

I've even let the idea of NaNo become more important than the writing part of it. I must have outlines! I must have everything else done and the world must be perfect or else....


So what is this all about? This is about it being four in the morning and I wasted two whole hours tonight watching the new 21 Jump Street DVD. And I don't care that I should have been working on Vision or the next challenge, or checking to see what's coming up in Back to School or 2YN. I don't even care that the damned Vision stuff is giving me trouble again this month. I don't care. I'll get it done because I always do.

And it's time to remember that I am a writer again, not just a Site Administrator, ezine editor, class instructor, ebook associate publisher, and whatever else there is tagged on to my name these days. I love doing those things. I just need to put writing up at the top again.

Ada Nish Pura should have been out by now. So should Muse for that matter, and there are a couple other novels I have let slide while I worked on everything else.

Time to get my priorities sorted out properly again.

Well, maybe not yet. Maybe after I get Vision done.

And after NaNo.


Monday, October 18, 2004

Back to work!

Okay, no more playing around.

Last week was one of those transition weeks that I get now and then. Part of that came because I was actually out of town for part of it -- including Saturday when we went to Omaha. So now I have to really sit down and get to work on several things.

First up is the Vision work. I was waiting for some last articles so that I could do the contracts all at once, but I'll go ahead and get the ones I have done.

Then back to the outline for Darkness Falls which is going well -- up to about 60 points -- but is odd. It's more about the mental and cultural reactions as the humans and aliens interact. Last night in chat I talked myself into a second POV character, though. This one will not have as much interaction with the aliens so I'll be able to deal more with the human side of things.

I'm going to write out my entire main plot first, though. That will make it far easier to see where my humans are going to have their biggest moments of conflict and put her (I think her) at the right place.

At any rate, Darkness Falls is not quite turning into the novel I thought it would be when I started, but that's not a surprise. My novels usually go this way!

Am I still writing this blog to avoid doing any real work? Watever would give me that idea?

Unfortunately, there is nothing else I can talk about so I might as well go off and get to work. It's not that I don't want to get Vision done -- I just don't feel like doing it. (grin)

Friday, October 15, 2004

Home, home, home....

Busy, busy, busy....

But I'm getting things done and sites updated, and thinking about my outlines. So far today I've managed to write up a rejection for DT and update the new Forward Motion Bookstore. This is a spot for FM members to put up their work.

The work at DT has been interesting. Since I have most of the basic rules now set up, and the site mostly the way I want it, I'm able to concentrate on the work. Of the ten manuscripts I have received since the start of the month, four were rejected straight out as the wrong genre, wrong format, or short stories rather than novels. Two others have been rejected after a reading. That leaves me now with four more manuscripts and the promises of three more on the way.

I'm working on the Darkness Falls outline. It's made a strange little shift in direction that I didn't see coming until I suddenly stood on the precipice and wondered how I got there. It's a good shift, though. It gives me humans a reason for survival and a more definite foe. I'm glad I thought of this part, and it plays into the role of the alien Holy One and what he means to the society. It's a great theme to play with.

Have I mentioned that it's COLD here? We haven't gotten higher than 47f today and the wind chill has kept it down in the 30's all day long. Russ and I have been trying to guess if we'll have snow before Halloween or not. It's happened before.

If things go well tonight, Russ and I will go out and buy a new toner for the printer and some paper. I have two novels ready to go out -- two of them! -- and need to get them packaged up over the weekend. Then I have to prepare two more submissions to go out in November so that I don't mess up my 'at least two a month' goal that I've kept for several years. Since 1998, I think.

I am having a great time. Lots of stuff to do, and nothing much to complain about. You know, long ago I decided that I had control of my own life and I'm an adult. Things that happened in the past only matter if I let them matter. I absolutely will not let how my parents raised me dictate what I am today, and far less so the reactions of others whom I have had problems with. I'm in charge of who I am and what I do -- and my only restrictions are the ones that we all face like finances and time.

So today is good. I get to do all the things I want to do, and while they don't always work out well, I know that they're my choices, and I'm not going to blame my failures on family, friends, poor schooling, or anything else. My choices, my mistakes -- and my successes.

It's good to have control. (grin)

Tuesday, October 12, 2004

One Outline Done!

Yes, the outline for Bad Connections is done. It took me a few days too many to get that last part finished up, but I finally worked through the problems to the end. I look forward to writing it!

I have pulled up two other unfinished outlines and hope to get them done this month as well. I have one other written on notecards to type in and finish, too. I have found that I like having outlines done and novels ready to start at any given time. With so much else going on in my life, it saves a lot of 'down time' while I think of something.

I did start a new story, too. I needed something more than just the outlines to work on, since they take far more work to write than the story. I played around with a story prompt generator and got a few things that got me started. I don't intend for this to be more than a novella. (Why do I have to keep telling myself that part?) I'm working on the outline to Darkness Falls (2YN novel) and had a vision of the opening -- the opening keeps changing drastically on me, but I think this might be the one this time. I think once I commit to what I want, I can just push through this outline. Resolutions of Trust (other 2YN) is also up for work, but it's a little harder still. Not a genre I'm comfortable with, I guess. The third one Serendipity Blues, is a story that I really want to write, but can't quite get a grasp of how it falls together. I think this is going to be another case of just write what I want for it, and then start figuring out how it falls together. Two story lines braided together for that one, and the material needs to slip in and around each other.

So what else? I am working on Vision and trying to figure out why some stuff didn't work last month on the emails and things. I dont' want it to go that way again, and I would like to figure out who did and who didn't get the emails. ARGH! But I'll get it fixed. This issue is going together well.

Beyond that, I have two novels ready to go out as soon as I get new toner and paper. I don't think I've ever had two novels ready to go at the same time! I'm looking forward to getting them shipped off!

Sunday, October 10, 2004


I am very nearly done with the outline for Bad Connections. It's very long, of course. I love it! I can't wait to start writing this one -- which is about three weeks away. I have some other outlines to work on during that time. In fact, I have this fear that by the time NaNoWriMo does start, I'll have so many outlines that I love that I won't know which one to start with!

My plan is to do my usual two novels in November. I might not make it this time because of some 'down time' in the middle of the month to do a convention. But if I can do that I'll still have one or two more outlines, and that'll give me a nice start for 2005. December will be devoted to finishing the last half of Written in the Sand which I have been purposely holding off for that time.

Right now, though, the focus is on finishing Bad Connections. I have only maybe two and a half chapters to go. I might add something back toward the middle, though. I'm at 265 entries. Might go to 300 or so.

Yes, I write excessive outlines sometimes. But when I get to the actual writing, it just flies, and I love that part! So I am going to devote more time to fancier outlines for a while. Fill in all the holes that I can and then just have fun when I get to the novels.

But right now.... I think I'll take my PDA and rest for a while doing notes. I'm near the end and I think I need to slow down and think this part out again.

Saturday, October 09, 2004

Stupid people....

Something occurred to me today after hearing about an incredibly rude person at Forward Motion.

Have you ever noticed that the people who most loudly proclaim they're so much smarter than everyone else are the ones who obviously aren't? It's amusing to watch people justify rudeness because they claim to be smarter -- as though, even if it were true, it would be an excuse. When someone like that tells you how much smarter they are, take a good look at them. See anything they've achieved by supposedly being a genius? Or is it just another bitchy person trying to make themselves more important with words rather than deeds? Shrug them off. Someone should have taught them manners when they were children. Now it's better to just laugh because they don't deserve anything more.

Wednesday, October 06, 2004

NaNo Q&A of the Day!

Just a quick note to point out that today, 10/06/04, I am the person answering the NaNoWriMo Question and Answer.

LOL. It's just fun to do.

Now I suppose I'm just going to have to go write something....


Yes, I am done with Ada Nish Pura! 101,431 words. I'm happy with it and I'm happy.

I'm also very tired.

But I thought I would post here tonight before I forget. I'm going to be very busy tomorrow (well, today -- but after I sleep) trying to get caught up on everything I should have already done. (grin)

But... but... I like it.

Time to go to bed before my head hits the keyboard, though!

And, of course, it doesn't want to upload. I'm giving it one more try and then heading for bed!

Tuesday, October 05, 2004

Oh, I'm here....

Busy few days, and yet with the feeling that I'm not getting nearly enough done. However, I am within about 10,000 words of finishing up Ada Nish Pura. I have some drastic changes to make at the end here from the original version. The changes may, in fact, cut down the length quite a bit now that I think about it. Since I've gone over 95,000 words I'm not going to worry too much.

Before I put this one aside, though, I think I'm going to do some reworking on a couple major parts. As I draw closer to the end, I see a few additions and changes that I want to make before I do the read aloud/clean prose phase.

And no, Mirrors has not gone out. I'm trying to make some decisions on it, as well. As I've told a couple people, I really like this story, but I also think that means it's doomed. LOL.

Anyway, it's coming up on 3:30am here and I'm ....

OH! A new Making Fiends! Yay!

Yes, that was fun. And now I can go to bed in a much better mood. (grin)

Monday, October 04, 2004

Thunk... again

It's been another long day. But I got a considerable amount of stuff done! And Russ and I even went for a lovely drive this afternoon. I've felt much better for having gotten out and seen a bit of the world again.

Right now, though, I'm dead tired.

But I've just about got Ada Nish Pura done. I should have this draft done by the end of the week. Probably sooner. I am then considering short story and outline work for the rest of the month -- or at least until I have everything ready for NaNo.

The main outline is going very well. I'm going to enjoy writing this one.

But it's late tonight and I'm just dead tired. Just got some FM site admin work done, and now it is really time to go to bed!

Sunday, October 03, 2004


I'm too busy.

Well, I'm sure that's a surprise to people here. But really -- I've just been a bit too busy the last few days, and here it is the morning of the third already, and I keep thinking it's still the first. I'm sure that can't be right.

I have, however, gotten a lot of work done. I haven't yet had a chance to send a novel off, but it will get there. I might have a second one ready to go before too long, too. That would be fun.

I have a couple submissions to handle for DTF. This is fun!

I'm about 1.5 classes ahead on 2YN which is also very nice.

I am going to go work on the outline for my NaNo novel after I post this. I might even pull up the other unfinished outlines and work on some of them as well. I need to get them all done before the end of the year anyway. And then I'll have outlines to start out the writing in 2005, which would be very nice. Planning ahead is a good idea, if you have the time.

Right now, though -- I'm going to go do some writing. Or maybe work on some other websites. Yeah. I've already written over 5000 words today. I really don't need to do more.

I wish I could talk Russ into a trip to the zoo. I've been trying for four years, but I kind of suspect that he's really not at all interested. LOL. A refuge might be nice instead. Although not since we're going to have company tomorrow night, and tomorrow is the only day he'll have free to himself. Alas. That's the problem, you see -- I don't get to spend much time with him because he's always busy, and the only time we could maybe do something I would find fun, it's the only day he has off and the poor guy does need some rest!

But still.... it would be fun. Not that we don't do other fun things, but I like to go see things. (grin)

Time, I think, to go do some other work! But at least I finally updated!

Friday, October 01, 2004

October? Oh hell....

Okay, so maybe I lose track of time, and suddenly there are only three months left in the year and I have things to get done right now! but I usually get call caught up by December 31st. It's just not always pretty. I think this is going to be one of those years.

Still, not all is bad. The new Dragon Tooth Fantasy pages are up.

Ah, fun stuff!

I have a new photography site that will be going up soon, too. I'm really looking forward to that -- my zoo pictures back! Yay!

What else? Wrote about 130,000 new words in September. I have about 276,000 to make 1,000,000 again this year. With NaNo coming up I have a good chance at it. But that means I need to get my outline done. Or maybe two done. Maybe I should be working on it instead of writing in this weblog!

Yeah, probably time to get to work. Lots of stuff to do. Really. And I have to stop looking at animal books and matching up pictures! (Sits piles of books on shelves behind her so that she doesn't see them and start leafing through the pages again.)

Ada Nish Pura is just over 77,000 words right now. About 20,000 or so more to go is all. I'll have it done soon! Yay!

Time to get back to work!

Thursday, September 30, 2004


I've just printed out my schedule for October. Should a person really need a schedule for running their life? Well, at any rate, it's got 18 things listed and we'll see how many of them I get done each day. The top ones are a given -- walking, writing, editing. By #4 we start getting into the iffy stuff for a while -- Outline, 2YN, FM Vision DT -- but then we hit Journal, which I haven't missed since October 1, 1998. (The other journal, not this one) so that seems like something I'm likely to get up. After that everything starts looking less likely to get done again. LOL

What else? Got a list of panels from the convention in November. I need to choose a few.

I had things to say before I got here, but it's not happening now. I think my brain goes to mush every time I open the window to do my weblog. I was thinking about things to write about all day -- writing related, life related, cats.

Oh! I do have a new interview up:

And now I'm going to post before this goes any later!

Saturday, September 25, 2004

Russ is home!

I just about have the background material for Mirrors finished. Amazing how such a few pages of things can take so much longer than writing the same amount of novel. (snarl) However, it will be going out soon. Yay!

I have the pages for DT set up and nearly ready to go. I have just one more piece to add in. I hope to have it live in October. This is really wonderful and a lot of fun. There is so much that I want to do.

Russ made it home today. Yay! It's good to have him back. He felt like he was gone for a long time, but really it was only a couple days. I should have gotten more done around the house, but we both agreed that I need to not push work that could hurt my back while he's gone. It's bad enough when he's home -- but home alone and with those problems is really awful.

What else? Oh, two of the three Grzimek's Animal Life Encyclopedia books arrived today. These are the first two books on birds, and I immediately found information on a bird I hadn't been able to identify before this. That was so nice! I have the third bird book still on the way, and then I only have to hunt down reptiles.

I've been reading Volume 3 - Mollusks and Echinoderms. I really hadn't intended to start it until October 1, but it doesn't hurt to get a few pages ahead. (grin)

I've started outlining the next Singer and St. Jude novel. That is going VERY well, too. I am so glad I remembered that I need to get this one written now if I want it in the queue for publication next year! Life is so odd. I forget the strangest things these days.

I'm also reading the Trachiniae by Sophocles, which I had to say I like far better than Eumenides by Aeschylus. I thought I would never get through that one. A shame because I loved Prometheus Bound. I've read all of these before, by the way, but just so many years in the past that I can't remember at what point I stopped.

I just noticed how much this post jumps around from one thing to another -- and right now that's pretty much how my life is going. I love it. There's so much fun stuff to do!

But right now, I think I'll try that sleep thing I hear others talk about!

Friday, September 24, 2004

Done with Mirrors!

I just finished Mirrrors. That should be the final draft before it goes out. I have cover letter and synopsis to do yet, but I have hopes that both will go quickly. Having Mirrors done is a wonderful relief. I like this novel -- and like I keep saying, that probably means it's doomed. (grin)

But I have to admit that I'm really tired out now! So I'll post this and get some rest.

And start thinking about that synopsis. LOL. No real rest, you know!

Monday, September 20, 2004

Write and write more

Ada Nish Pura is up to about 46,000 words. I've begun to hit some really rough spots in the story -- items showing up that have not been mentioned before, repeating actions and words apparently just for the word count (grin), etc. But my people are going into their first real battle, so things will speed up again.

The editing of Mirrors is wonderful. I can't gurantee that the book is wonderful, but I'm having a great time working on it.

I've been working on the website for DT, too. I hope to have it up next week.

It's interesting to see novels take shape and reshape themselves with each set of edits. I barely wrote Mirrors a year ago, but I can see a lot of change from the first draft to this one. Ada Nish Pura came in two parts originally, and I'm at the melding point where it just didn't work out well. I can see some of the problems, in fact. I started using different names for items, adding in things that hadn't been there before -- stuff like that. The work on it has been intense, but enjoyable.

I feel like I'm really at a sort of crux point in my work. As soon as I get DT up and going, I'll have to change gears somewhat again, and focus on new work and new challenges. I'm looking forward to it, but this stage between will drive me crazy.

So I'll go bury myself in more novel writing. It seems wise before I drive others crazy as well.

Friday, September 17, 2004


I've been getting an incredible amount of work done lately. I'm up to 30,000 words on Ada Nish Pura already, and 100 pages of Mirrors read aloud and edited. I've got 2YN stuff nearly done, and some neat stuff for FM created. I have the DT website designed but not completed.

Autumn agrees with me.

Reading classical material I always find that there are lines that stay with me. Prometheus Bound is like that again:

There hath gone up a cry from earth, a groaning for the fall
Of things of old renown and shapes majestical

...for Art Is by much weaker than Necessity

The holy to the holy,
With frequent feet and lowly

This winter's tale of wrong

Better to die at once, than live
And all my days be evil.

I collect the lines in little notes, and sometimes I find a quote that suits a particular character. I have a book I'm about to write in which one of the characters will have a far more 'classical' background than the others expect. To have wonderful little lines that he might quote now and then is going to be great.

But just to read them, sometimes, is wonderful as well. This isn't the first time I've read Prometheus Bound. It's a short piece (Aeschylus, and this the G. M. Cookson English Verse translation).

I'm going to be reading a lot of odd things for a while. Bits and pieces of stuff, mostly, relating to different subjects. I'm using the Great Books Syntopicon and going through the various subjects they listed there. It will take me forever and I might well lose interest or time or both before I get very far....

But I've alwasy believed in learning just for the sake of learning. So I'm reading the Grzimek's Animal Life Encyclopedia (just scored three of the four missing volumes, so things look good!), and I'll read pieces of related material out of a few dozen books for the Syntopicon, and other odd things as well. My fiction reading has suffered again this year, though. I need to read more fiction, but I was badly disappointed in a few books, and it's hard for me to throw myself back into it again. Even bad nonfiction usually has something interesting to present.

And classics... well, there are a few little Dickens that I haven't read yet, and I love reading his work. Maybe that will come next!

I intend to have Mirrors out by the end of this month and Ada Nish Pura by the end of next month. I likely won't make it. Things seem to happen when I make such plans. But at the moment, everything is moving along and I'm enjoying it. Seems wise to get back to work now, in fact, since Russ will be home soon and I can't say what we might do with the rest of the night!

Thursday, September 16, 2004

An Excellent Writing Day

I had one of those wonderful writing days that a person could wish would not end. Two stories sold for the DDP $1 downloads. Over 5000 words on one novel and over 50 pages edited on the other. I did some work on the 2YN class, got a set of pages done for FM and did some design work for the DT site.

I am also reading Prometheus Bound (translation by G.M. Cookson). It's a short work, and part of a larger reading project, and... it gave me an idea for a story. Well, I suppose that's not surprising. I get ideas for stories just about everywhere. But I would have thought this would be a fantasy story, but instead I found something sf-ish in it. I'm going to jot it down in the handy 'idea' list and see if anything else comes of it.

But now it's late and I really do need to get some sleep. I'm hoping to have nearly as good a day tomorrow.

But 4 am is late enough for me tonight!

Tuesday, September 14, 2004

Doing well

Maybe I shouldn't curse myself, but I am doing well. The back isn't giving me much trouble, even though I worked on cleaning up parts of the house today. My back is a little stiff, but nothing too troublesome.

Russ is going to be gone most of the next two weeks. He's doing a speaking tour through most of Nebraska -- and Nebraska is a very large state. For the first few days he'll be home each night, but as they head out into western Nebraska he won't be driving back each night.

If he were going alone I'd travel with him, maybe. but this is part of a business deal and he has someone else going with him. Ah well. Gives me time to work on house stuff, as long as I'm careful.

We have had thunderstorms all day! I can't remember the last time we had storms as steady as these. Of course we also have flash flood watches tonight, but that doesn't worry me. I'm not close to any creek or stream. I am relatively close to the Missouri River, but that does not 'flash' flood. If we get a 'flood watch' then I'll worry.

What else?

Ada Nish Pura is up to 16,000 words already! And I sent off two submissions in the last two days. Always a good feeling!

I now have a schedule with fourteen things on it, starting with Writing and ending with websites (the general kind, not FM or DT). Three of the items involve reading, which I seriously had to schedule in because I'm not doing nearly enough of it! I plan to go on a great fantasy reading binge. (grin)

I'm still trying to work out the DT parameters for submissions. It's an interesting part of the business to go through. I'm not interested in defining anything to strictly, but it does help to have some basic ideas of what I'm looking for.

Lots to get done yet tonight. And I still have a few Angel episodes to watch. (grin)

Sunday, September 12, 2004

Thank You

Thanks to everyone for the good wishes! I'm still a bit stunned. Day two as an Associate Publisher has set me thinking about all kinds of things. I get to set up this imprint in anyway I want. I'm going to have a website, submission tracking, and lots of info on what I am looking for, as well as a newsletter....

I obviously have a lot of work ahead of me. I've pulled out my schedule and begun reworking my priorities. Well, all but the top one, of course. I will never take a job that has a higher priority than my own writing. I'm just crazed that way.

Which reminds me, Ada Nish Pura is going along fine. The second chapter had way too many melodramatic scenes, but I think I've gotten that bit of overwrought excitement handled. I should have been on the third chapter today, but this one took more work than I expected. Several rewrites before I got it toned down and still conveyed the feel of someone lost at sea, alone, and suddenly given hope.

I'm just about done with the edit of the short story Stalking, too. This one goes to DDP tonight, I hope. And then... one more after that, if all goes well. And it's gone will so far, so I'm happy enough.

But busy. Very busy!

Saturday, September 11, 2004

Associate Publisher

I am the new Associate Publisher for Double Dragon's fantasy ebook imprint, Dragon Tooth Ebooks.

This has been a possibility for some time. I've been reading slush, as people knew, for awhile in a sort of test of the position, and preparing for the real work of taking books from submission through publication, as well as doing some marketing. I will also now get a percentage on the sales of all books I produce. Did I mention I have complete control over everything in my section?

I imagine some people out there are wondering when I'll find the time with everything else -- but the truth is that I've been preparing for this for some time, and I'm getting better at alotting time to the proper causes. It's really a great opportunity. I'm setting up a page on my web site to explain what I'm looking for, what to expect if you submit, and how the process works.

I also plan to produce at least one anthology a year. I'm working on the submission guidelines for it as well.

Oh, and the back is still bothering me, but I'm working anyway and ignoring it as best I can at this point. I have the first chapter of Ada Nish Pura done and I really like the rewrite -- I'm now working on the second chapter. If I can get it done at a chapter a day, I'll be finished by mid-October, I think.. I have another story for the DDP $1 download section almost ready to go off. The class for tonight's 2YN is nearly done.

Friday, September 10, 2004

Done and Done!

Early yesterday morning I finished Paid in Gold and Blood. And then, right around midnight tonight (less than 24 hours later), I finished the work on Mirrors, except for some general clean up (aligning chapters properly, making certain they're numbered correctly, etc.).

And I'm happy with both. Okay, that may be a result of the pills that have finally knocked the pain out of my back, but still -- I got them both through their current drafts. Paid is preparing for a jaunt out into the world. Mirrors is going through a general check over to get the chapters lined up properly and a recheck of the spelling for a couple words, which I noticed I kept changing.

I have Ada Nish Pura pulled up to do a massive rework. I also need to do two more short pieces for DDP. No, hold it. I think I need three now. I'll pull one of them up for my current edit project and put Ada at the top of the list for rewrite -- which means printing it off and starting new. There's a lot about it I like, but quite a bit that needs reworked, expanded, better explained....

Still, I have hopes for getting it done fairly fast. The book is about 96,000 words right now. I do not expect a lot of growth, but I do expect considerable change.

I'm still having some back problems, but I'm getting caught up, finally.

It's a good way to head into autumn and the last months of the year!

Thursday, September 09, 2004


That's actually bad back. Much better tonight than in the last 36 hours. I can actually move from one room to another, and sit in this chair for long enough to get something done.

I'm within a few thousand words of finishing Paid in Blood and Gold which makes this all the more annoying. And the house, which I had just started to get cleaned up, is a pit again. Argh!

But I'll get it all back soon. A couple more days and my back should have subsided to an occaisonal twinge rather than this annoyance. And not everything has been a waste, of course. Tonight I figured out a major problem with an upcoming novel and talke dit out with Russ. I'm glad to have that one settled because I could not get past the third chapter in the outline. Very annoying. But I found the problem over pizza tonight and felt much better afterwards.

And I think I'm going to tough it out and finish off Paid in Blood and Gold tonight. I need to clear a novel off the list because I just found a chance for another one, and I want to get it done and ready to go out. Ada Nish Pura suddenly just made a dashing leap to the front of the line because it sounds to me like just what this publisher is looking for. That means some serious fast work here on it.

Ah, the writing life.

Some day it's even going to pay off. (grin)

Monday, September 06, 2004

Done and off!

If you look closely, it's obvious that I put in my own background on that picture. The kit fox was up against a messy stone backdrop that just drew away from seeing him. This is much better.

I just sent Without a Fear of Words off to the publisher. Nice to have such a quick turn around and get something out of my hands like that. This book also makes my 9th sale for the year -- averaging one a month isn't too bad. I also have two in a non-paying market -- the picture and essay site called A Picture's Worth (this is my last entry there). I really love doing stuff for that site and should plan to do one or so a month next year. That would be fun. They only require between 300-1000 words. And a picture. I don't have a problem with the second part and you'd think I shouldn't have trouble with the first, either!

What else? Paid in Gold and Blood is very nearly done. It's going to be a bit over 80,000 I think, and not a bad story at all! Once I have it finished, I'll go back to work on Written in the Sand.
Tonight, though, I'm celebrating another sale, and one I had not expected -- at least not in this format. It's fun to have writing surprises now and then.

Saturday, September 04, 2004

A Sale!

Today I sold Without a Fear of Words, a collection of articles on writing. This will be an ebook from DDP -- and it was an unexpected sale. I had offered some of the articles as a small collection for the Dollar Download section. Deron upped the ante and suggested a full priced ebook instead. With that in mind, I said I would add some new material and get it all ready to go.

The good part of this is that the majority of the material has already been edited by the wonderful copy editors that have worked for Vision. That means far less work for everyone concerned. My biggest problem right now is to arrange the material (I'm going mostly for alphabetical), cull some of the stuff that is repetitious, and then get it all formatted and ready to go. I think I can have it done by the end of this weekend, especially since it appears Russ is going to be working out of town again. (sigh)

What else? Well, the other novels will be on hold until I get this done, mostly because if I just apply myself to it for the next couple days I can have it completed and not have to worry about it becoming another unfinished project. And since I already have the contract, I think that's a very good idea.

Friday, September 03, 2004

Moving On....

I am coming very close to finishing Paid in Gold and Blood (or Blood and Gold -- still can't decide which it should be.) Probably another 30,000 words or so is all. This version has fallen together very well and I can't wait to have it done and see what I think.

I have let Written in the Sand rest for a few days, specifically so I could finish the other novel first and then turn my full attention back to it. Just a personal choice because I want to concentrate a little more on some of aspects of the story, and I can't do that with too much else going on. I'm doing a lot of work on editing projects right now, and it makes it difficult to focus like I did during the 10,000 word days.

I miss them. (grin)

But I have other work to do, and it's all going well. I'm waiting on word for a couple submissions, I have the start of second half of the 2YN class going!

We have nearly sorted out the two house division, as well. I'm starting to see a real change in this one, which some walls and corners that I hadn't seen in years. I'm trying to organize my books -- never an easy task because I end up spending more time looking through them than organzing them. Well, I'm sure there isn't a single person here who hasn't faced that one!

It's almost 3am and I think it's time to call it a night and go watch another Sharpe episode before bed.

Life is so hard....

Wednesday, September 01, 2004

And a new month!

Let's see.... last month ended with 140,048 words. I also got Vision done and up and a edited and sold three short stories for Double Dragons $1 downloads (or free if you buy the book they are assoicated with:

Year of the Fire Rat (Free with Aubreyan)

Raven (Free with Brendan's Song)

Unlikely Companions (Free with Crystal and the Stars)

The last one originally appeared in a Eggplant Production's 'Winter Sampler' back in 2000. It even got a very nice little note in a review back then. I did a little bit of editing this time around. It's fun to see the things I've learned even in that time.

But anyway, here we are in September already! Autumn, my favorite time of the year...

But hold on. We had a very cool summer, over all. Lots of nights where it dropped down into the 40's and days in the 70's and 80's. Amazing weather, and nothing to complain about in general. It's made me wonder what the fall months will be like, and what kind of winter we'll have this year.

So imagine my surprise when I find the first day of September is over 90.

Something is not right.

I think I'll go throw myself into one of my imaginary worlds for a while where I can at least understand the weather.