Here’s the last of the prototype chapters. I am much older about peaks (Nichole’s sharp voice, here and there), valleys (Mackenzie’s, everywhere), and RMS (the relationship between those levels). In learning such, I’ve also gotten the volume waaay up from where it was before. Tanjed near burst my eardrums in the headphones…
With this complete, and taking in any constructive criticism y’all might have, I’m going to try making notes and writing some very raw ideas I have about Faustina and her third novel, “Goddess’ Crusade.” It is setting the bar a little high, but I want all three of her books and the complete audiobook of “Friend & Ally” out no later than Christmas. We shall see.
Sorry for the quiet… when the H1B’s at Kindle fixed one problem with the cover of “C&DC” they broke a different part. Trusting them not at all to not screw it up again, I used my very limited Acrobat skills to make a change and submit it. With chance and luck will hear something by Monday.
With that – hopefully – behind me, I’ll be looking about for a copyeditor and cover designer for my short story collection. I’m still tinkering with that MS a bit but still look to a publishing date in early March.
As for this weekend, it is once again Ohayocon here in central Ohio! As each year there are fewer and fewer panels that interest me, we’re only staying one night at a hotel next to the convention center. Daughter #1 in even driving down from college to attend; I believe she’s cosplaying Weiss from RWBY. Me? After sounding the waters on Instagram, I dusted off Elias Ainsworth from “Ancient Magus’ Bride,” for Saturday. Come Sunday PM, I hope finally to re-read my notes and start in on Part 2 of Crusade. Cheerio!
Finished the segment I began yesterday: Faustina having a brief chat with the mayor of what’s left of Asheville. With that in the bag, I went to review some maps about their upcoming troop movements. Yeah, there are those three dams, but I’m sure the barges and escorts will fit through their locks… Those dams look a little small… let’s look them up and also check ‘street level view’!
Well, dang. Having spent a half-dozen of my formative years around the Columbia River, I took it for granted that a great waterway would have locks for barge traffic. I realized now that the Savannah River is not a “great waterway.” Important, certainly, but it is a creek compared to something such as the Columbia.
I still think I can get their artillery onto barges in Augusta. But the legions are going to have to cover the 160 miles from Asheville to there, first. Then, while the barges – under guard – move down-river, the infantry will march another 125 miles. I see that a few days of maps, calculations, and re-writes are ahead of me. Hope to have something by Wednesday.
Finally! After banging my head against the six-month rock that was the discrepancy at the beginning of “Crosses & Doublecrosses” I had an idea as I stumbled, drunk, to bed last night. Deciphering my scrawl of a note this morning, I got it: Dunning-Kruger.
Dunning-Kruger is a two-sided coin of fail: on the obverse is the stupid thinking they are not: “anybody can do that!” said the idiot about to shoot an apple off of his son’s head. The converse is just as deadly: “since I’m a smart [profession], I’m smart at everything!” You’ve read before about my comments when Doctors of Pharmacy try to hang a picture. It’s a mess.
So in this case, two things happened: the DK is that Sylvia, having been the best and brightest in the room her whole life, figured that that what she had heard about the Breakup of the US just couldn’t be that bad for someone like her. The other, much more subtle thing – right at the end of this rewritten opening – is an allusion to one of the Machines we have never met, Ninon.
With this in mind I can FIX THE NOVELLA! With the help of a miracle I might have it done by Thanksgiving. If you like these updates and stories, please keep praying for my liver.
Wife and family are off ten days on a vacation: the perfect time to write! I got up at 0800 Saturday…
Breakfast. Pay some bills. Sort some investment reports. Start first laundry. Put dishes in dishwasher; clear around sink. Go for walk. Drive to mother-in-law’s house to feed/water her parakeet. Come home to start loads of towels. Write a blog post about not writing.
And it’s not at if I’ve nothing to write about: last night I jotted down several ideas for Part Two of “Crosses and Doublecrosses”. More importantly, my copyeditor gave me the suggestion that, as my soon to be released “Worlds Without End” is a ten-year-on sequel of “Echoes of Family Lost,” for anyone who hasn’t read the first I should include a preface and cast of characters. That seemed pretentious to me so instead I saw a Prologue where, just about to turn 13, Gary is assigned an essay by his Brotherhood: to reflect upon his family. In that reflection I will be able to re-introduce the characters from EoFL.
Dammit. Except for another load of towels, I have no more excuses. Guess I’ll do that now…
Completed my first editing pass of “Worlds Without End”: formatting into 6″ x 9″, block-justified text (which boofed up all of my block-quoted text…), catching any gross rhetorical errors and plot holes… that sort of thing. In this raw form it is 263 pages; that will grow a little as I add the chapter breaks and make some plot clarifications for Part 2; right now I’ve just highlighted a couple of sentences to alert me on the next pass to ‘clean this stuff up!’
Speaking of the two parts, part one is called CODE:ASCENSION and part two CODE:DESCENSION, alluding to something that happens to two of the characters.
I hope to have my second pass complete by mid-week at which point I’ll run it through Grammerly then hand it off to my copyeditor. Things are proceeding quite nicely, for once!
Nope. Not me. Right around 2130 of Halloween, I send the third-pass edit of Foes & Rivals to my talented copyeditor, at the same time taking a vow I’d write nothing, original, in November.
I now turn to implementing her edits to Friend and Ally while she processes its sequel. I don’t think I’ll have F&A ready for the Local Authors Fair on 17 November… maybe “limited edition” proof copies? Like Niven’s first edition of Ringworld, where the Earth rotated in the wrong direxion.
Besides DayJob, Husband/FatherJob, and WriterJob of 173k words in 7 months, I am so, so tired.
An editor would probably tell me to lose this entire post below the fold. Yet another reason I self-publish.
What will have to be radically reassigned it the last bit of my last post, the part that is first-person Gil. There’s no way Nichole can ‘remember’ something from someone else; she’d run off at that point. Still, I was drunk and saw it, so I wrote it down. I’ll slip it in somewhere.
Which is something else I’m trying very hard to do: keeping this first-person Nichole. While my books have (few) good reviews on Amazon, there is particular criticism of how much I flick from character to character. I realize it is – hopefully becoming was – a bad habit of mine: as you all know, I ‘see’ these scene and write them down. Many are from the perspective of other characters. As in a film or animation, it would all be simple and obvious. As a book? My fault entirely. So, I’m really trying to rein that tendency in and getting into the heads of other characters as few and far between as I can.
It is tough. Especially once I’m into Part Three, when not just Nichole, but a host of other pivotal players in that Act. Rhun, Tessmer, Bakke, the Mayor, Teresa, Nike… how can I get this bloodbath done by Halloween?
Never really meant to go dark like that. A few unrelated – that is, closely related – things happened at once I was left to manage them.
Firstly, the revised, re-edited, and re-covered edition of my first novel, “The Fourth Law,” is now loose in the wild! I am once again thankful to my copyeditor for all her hard work. In close relation to that…
At the suggestion of another writer, I am going to try serializing T4L on wattpad for a couple of weeks to see if it gets any traction. So, if you’re too cheap to spring for the ninety-nine cents for the Kindle edition, and too lazy to post a review afterward, you can read along for free for at least another ten days.
While I was setting all that up, my copyeditor delivered the re-edit of “Echoes of Family Lost.” I applied most of her recommendations – I’ll never say ‘Asian’ for ‘Oriental’! – and should have the physical proof copy of that in my hands tomorrow. If all’s well, it shall be re-released by this weekend.
Not wanting her idle and, besides weekends, not having a day off since January, I made a four-day weekend out of this last. I’ve been doing the work of 1.6 people since the end of December and I needed a tanjed break. Besides sleeping until noon I also have nearly finished my editing pass of what was ‘Defiant’ and is now “The Saga of Nichole5: Friend & Ally.” I’ll need a cover for that so shall be setting up another campaign on 99designs in a couple of weeks.
Actual writing-wise, a year after I said I would I am finally typing out as much of the oral history of my father-in-law as I can recall, especially as regards his service in WWII and time in Hungary’s gulag. Hopefully I can get all the basics complete in no more than three weeks… I still want to know more about Gary’s younger sister, Faustina.
So again, apologies. I’ll try to do better in the coming days!
Short? Sure it is. Abrupt? I don’t think so. Lampshade hung? I thought I did, both in the main story and this coda.
Consider: the “short” story of ‘The Second Bridge’ came in at 11.4k words. This “little” bonus ending is 4900 words. Sometimes, no matter how interesting these people are, I need to walk away for other projects.
To wit: my copyeditor has returned the 2nd edition of ‘Echoes of Family Lost.’ This weekend shall be spent implementing those changes. I tell you: no matter how you might prize your storytelling, when an editor hands back a manuscript – that you thought was fine – essentially bleeding red ink… it’s an incredibly humbling experience.
Thanks, everyone, for reading about Henge and her families. I hope you love them all as much as I do. After this weekend’s editing, we’ll be off again!