Memorial

74,124 words.  Finished.  I’ve been living with these people in my head since November.  Now… well they’re still there, but not really ‘alive;’ their story is over, so now they’re just pieces on a chessboard that I move while editing Cursed Hearts for a commercial release.

I’ve done this twice before, so it keeps getting easier:  fix the story, format pages and chapters, convert to PDF.  I’m going to need cover art, so besides getting a quote from Createspace, I want to reach out to what little connexions I have in the ‘artist community.’  Friend Tracy made a sketch some months back; as I concept, I like it, but for marketing reasons I want photo-images rather than drawn-images, if that makes sense.

I’m sorry that there’s nothing under the fold, this time.  Giving away the ending is, well, giving away the ending.  I also tie up several plot threads I knew that I’d had dangling for the last few months.

I know I’ve yeoman’s work ahead of me, editing this, but… I’m really glad I got to know everyone:  Chris, Cat, Maya, Anton.  Seven months ago, we were all total strangers.  What a story they let me see!  Thank y’all so much!

Ohayocon 2017 Panel

Friday PM, a looooong walk from the action of the rest of central Ohio’s biggest animecon. I was to give a talk on Creative Writing & Self-publishing.  I expected 3.  Maybe 5.  Ten minutes before the talk, doors open.  18 came in.  I had 15 hand-outs.

Ten minutes later, when I stand to begin my talk, there are just over 50 people.  I reach down for the water bottle, think better of it, and reach for my flask of bourbon, instead.  I raise my head and smile like Milo does.

“Thank you so much for coming all this way!  You’re obviously not here by accident, so let’s get to it!”

One full hour later (the con changed the format so we really get a full hour) completing both my presentation and the dozens of very good questions  (barring, well… never mind), I’m shaking hands, signing & selling books, suddenly the room’s empty.   I look at Daughter #1.

“That went very well, father.”

“Yeah.”

Later this evening, people from the panel stopped me in the halls of the Columbus Convention Center saying, “Thanks so much!  I’m going to start on my book tomorrow!”

Being an asshole, I do what I do:

“Why not tonight?”

 

Fantastic panel, fantastic group; thanks be to God!

“Plots have I laid!”

Whew!  Finished the ‘script’ that I’ll be using with my Powerpoint slides in twelve days at my presentation on Creative Writing & Self-Publishing at Ohayocon.  I’ve much ground to cover, and – since I’ll be a little drunk – cannot allow myself to get side-tracked, so I’ll have a written script in-hand to keep me on the rails.  I’ll likely as not tweak it a little, but that’s one less thing to fret over.

Have to work a short shift tomorrow (ironically with the woman who’ll be starring in the music video I need to finish) so perhaps I can take all my hand-written direction notes for what I’m provisionally calling “Lightning Across Clearest Blue” and type them up and get them to the rest of the team.

What?  Work on ‘Cursed Hearts’?  Never heard of it.

Continue reading ““Plots have I laid!””

Not dead; but dreaming

Haven’t posted as, honestly, there was nothing to say.

Work continues on Cursed Hearts, slowly (it would be oh-so simple to turn it into a novella of 30k words; I’m resisting that impulse.  For now).

I’ve the outline of what looks to be a 11-slide Powerpoint presentation for my Creating Writing/Self-publishing panel at Ohayocon in mid-January.  After a year of watching Milo speeches, I find myself using his voice in my head as I write.

This morning made a re-revision to the images I’m thinking of using in a fan-video; a joint venture of 3-AR Studios LLC and Star Art Works LLC.  I need that in the hands of my collaborators no later than a week from today so they can add/delete/change it.

It’s fascinating to me that the world of Machine Civilization I’ve created is open and flexible enough to swallow all of my other works.  As a former Systems Engineer, I’m absurdly pleased about that.

Christmas break for my girls, so no shuttling them about pools.  I’m hoping for productive evenings this next two weeks.

Ii don’t care that CH is a commercial product (well, yes, I do; that’s not my point) so I’m going to continue sharing snippets here. Continue reading “Not dead; but dreaming”

Curtain falls; curtain rises

NaNoWriMo passed yesterday.  As I expected, I was no-where near finished, much less to 50k words.  Which is fine:  I’ve many other things pressing for my time, and I’m finding the characters engaging and the genre a good challenge, so I don’t want to rush.  Still:  deadlines.  So, I think I’ll set Christmas as my writing stop-date.  As I’m guesstimating that this one will be a little longer than my first two – maybe 65k words – that’ll give me January to… hang on, something just came in on my ‘writer’ email….

Oh.  It appears my one-hour panel, ‘Creative Writing and Self-Publishing’ for Ohayocon 2017, in Columbus, Ohio, has been approved.  Sure be nice if I could give a more current example than 10-month old Echoes of Family Lost.  Hmmm.  January 15th….

‘Scuse me:  I need to go make some coffee for tonight.  I’d best see how Maya gets her memory back so she can start killing people again.  Cheerio!

Updates

Only fourteen days left until NaNoWriMo begins.  About a week ago I finally dug out the script I’d written for what would have  been the webcomic, Poisoned Hearts, thinking I recalled it well enough to serve as a first chapter.

Oops.

While I did recall most of it, the characters were already reforming in my mind for the new story; so, personalities are different, huge timing changes . . . at least the locations….    Nope:  I’d reimagined what the lab at Neuroi looks like, based upon my horror short.

So as it is, what was a first chapter of material is now a stack of notes for Cursed Hearts.  That still puts me miles ahead of where I started two years ago with The Fourth Law:  one mental image and a 20-second sound bite.  Barring any unforeseen RealLife consequences – as such happened last November – I’m feeling very good about this project.  Of course it’s tempting to actively make notes now, but I think that violates the spirit of the month-long challenge.  Dreaming, okay; notes, not so much.

My other October project:  converting my father-in-law’s oral history into written history, has also not gone as well as I’d hoped.  Once I sat down to write all that I recalled as a framework for him to add onto, I realized just how much I’ve forgotten over the past ten years.  Sure, I can ‘see’ the images:  him and his cavalry detachment caught in the second floor of a Polish cheese factory when a Red Army platoon motors up.  Him in a AVO prison, the former Minister of Foreign Affairs to his right and a 2-star general to his left.  I think I shall reallocate this to January, when it’s dark and cold and we’re all inside (December will be given over to editing then publishing Cursed Hearts by Christmas).

Not much meat in this post, but that’s what happens when a writer is between project.  Expect things to get very interesting quite soon.  Cheers!

 

First Pass

Got the interior completed and uploaded last night.  More clumps of hair out this morning trying to get the front/back covers done.  At only 24 pages, there’s no ‘spine’ per se, so had to work around that.  Then, the primitive graphics program I was using decided it was done for the day.

The nice thing about flat-panel screens is they go much further once they’ve cleared the glass of the window.

*ahem*  After applying the typical IT solution (“Did you restart your computer?”), things were less bad.  Images formatted, converted, uploaded.  I’ve gone ahead and submitted them for review by CreateSpace, even though I’ve no blurb on the back cover, yet.  I want one of their proof copies in my hand:  until you’re holding a physical copy, you’ve no idea what stupid things you’ve screwed up (such as leaving page numbers out of my first novel; my then 11 year-old caught that one).

As always, I cannot thank Claudia Gadotti enough for her amazing illustrations.  Please go to her place and lavish her with commissions!