Writing Update: March 2016

So my life kinda-sorta fell apart this month. (And then stitched itself back together, thankfully. Loved ones in the hospital, pet’s health declining rapidly, etc.) As such, I’m behind on basically everything. Homework, housework, study abroad forms. . . and of course my writing goals. In fact, I only have two stories to give you updates on. Eek.

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It’s the 23rd as I type this, and I have yet to hit 3,000 words this month out of my 6,000 target. Yikes, am I right? However, now that spring break has wrapped up and now that life isn’t so chaotic, I can hopefully get back into the routine of things. I am however 16+k into THE IMMORTAL at this point, so around 20% of the way to my goal length.

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The In-Between? What the heck is that, another new story?” Alas, no. This one used to go by the title The Cradle, but has been changed to The In-Between on account of it sounding less. . . well, less like a nursery item, and more true to the content of the book.

I’ve also decided to change up this story in a big way. I’ve had the full four page outline for this novel for over two years, but something about it just felt off. Finally I identified what it was, and to fix it requires a big overhaul. Essentially the story lacked a clear goal or tangible end-point for the main character to aim towards. (This is why outlines are great, kids, but I digress.) Before, it was about a guy plagued by ghosts and oddities trying to teach him lessons about his life before it’s too late. Interesting, but a little vague. The outline’s feel reflected that. Now, it’s about him being stuck in limbo and traveling over to Death’s side, only to encounter bizarre beings and events along the way, all of which attempt to turn him back around.

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How has March been treating you? Have you gotten a lot done or have you fallen off the wagon like myself? Comment below!

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Writing Update: January 2016

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At long last, The Final Advent has been published! This brings the No Angels trilogy to a close, which is a bittersweet moment for me. (There’ll be an entire blog post on this later.) This is a huge accomplishment for me, and is a promising way to start off the new year!

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I’ve finally started drafting The Immortal! I plan for the first draft to clock in around 70k, and have already knocked out 6k. To be honest, while first drafts famously suck, I am having a LOT of fun writing it! I hope you guys will like reading it just as much. ;)

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The Stolen Sun

Still subbing away on this one! It’s at Tor right now, a place that can take months to respond, but hey, we’ve all gotta play the game at one time or another, am I right?

Where Gold is Born

Yep, this piece has already been published. I know. But! Since the previous place didn’t have exclusive rights over it (the window for their rights have since expired), I’m trying to squeeze another credit out of this one by subbing it as a reprint.

Heartless (WIP title)

My current sci-fi/horror piece! To be honest, drafting this one is . . . laborious. I feel like the story is quite literally dying under my fingers with each sentence, but that’s also how I used to feel about TSS, and look where that is now! I’m holding out hope for this one. I’m aiming for 6k for the first draft, and am at about 2k as it stands.

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Stay tuned, everyone! What progress have you been making on your goals?

What’s Changed in NO ANGELS

As with all long projects, No Angels has had a multitude of alterations made to it. While the bare-bone structure has largely stayed the same, that’s about it. Below are just a few of the most memorable changes that’ve been made to the series over the years.

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Riven used to be little more than a comic relief character. His name was Bobby. (And no, I’m not kidding.)

For a time, Liz was actually supposed to end up with Mark. I’d liked the idea of the non-special, normal friend getting the girl, but as Riven’s character developed, Mark got cut out of the picture. Muggle.

There were originally four books. Count ’em. The extra (and initially second) book took place in the Australian outback because, as a kid, I was obsessed with the deadly variety of creatures the continent hosts. I deemed it extraneous pretty early on.

Originally Guards who’d been brought back to life existed only in animal form, but I’d found that didn’t work into the mechanics of the story as well.

Liz’s primary weapon used to be a flame-arrowed bow. She also used to have power over stone/earth, but I thought that was getting a bit too Avatar: The Last Airbender-y so I gave those powers to a different race, the Viri Lapideus.

Liz’s last name was originally Crenshath. She had about 10 last names before I finally just picked one.

Liz initially had another best friend in addition to Mark: Josie. In the end, she betrayed Liz by trading confidential information to Jakeus in exchange for him not attacking her when his plans came to fruition. She didn’t serve much of a purpose in the story overall, though, so out she went!

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Did any of these surprise you? Did you see some of them coming? Comment below!

 

Writing in 2014: My Year in Review

I have to be honest, 2014 was an extremely trying and difficult year for me. So, it was difficult to get myself up and writing. But I also didn’t recognize just how much I’d accomplished this year either until I sat back and started reflecting!

Without further ado, here’s a compilation of everything I’ve accomplished this year.

No Angels

I finished re-editing No Angels; cutting out no less than 14,000 words, adding in scenes, cutting scenes, etc.

This monster weighs nearly two pounds!

This monster weighs nearly two pounds!

Afterwards I reformatted the novel in both eBook and paperback form and held a giveaway to celebrate its release!

Collapsed Cathedrals

This one wasn’t a huge priority, but I still felt it needed tending to. Long story short, Gaiman’s Law got the better of me, and, since I couldn’t bear the idea of there being potential typos in my book (unavoidable as it may be), I gave it another read through and uploaded the edited version.

The Final Advent

I’ve been making progress on editing TFA and getting beta edits done. Also, I’ve made a lot of headway in creating the cover. Nearly done, too! This one will definitely be released in the earlier half of 2015.

The Stolen Sun

I wrote The Stolen Sun, edited it multiple times with the help of many an amazing beta (shout out to Intisar Khanani & Elisabeth Wheatley!), and have been submitting it to quite a few places! No bites yet, but my fingers remain crossed.

Where Gold is Born

This piece finally got picked up for publication by the Sagebrush Review! Volume 9 is actually out now, if you want to pick yourself up a copy ;)

The Immortal and The Cradle 

The Immortal and The Cradle became significantly more fleshed out versions of themselves than they ever were. I fleshed out the outline for The Cradle, and even though I’m still not totally satisfied with it, progress is progress. The Immortal took on a whole new life, the plot getting fully brought to life, characters created and given backstories and personalities, have conducted mountains of research, and so on. The Immortal has been itching to burst out of my fingertips, and will likely be my central writing-focus of 2015.

Silverhart

I’ve done little bits of work on this one, creating the world, developing some story arcs, and building up the mythology and world rules. This story is HUGE though, (at least 5 books), so it’ll probably be at least 5 more years before I start actually writing.

So, there’s you have it! My writing progress of 2014. How did this year go for you in terms of accomplishments, writing related or not?

Also, I want to tag Elisabeth Wheatley and Intisar Khanani to do a post similar to this as well! How did y’alls year go in terms of writing?

Have a great rest of your year, everyone!