Monday, January 2, 2017

2016: The Year I Was As Successful As All My Other Years

Yeah, so I keep saying I'm a writer. I write stuff. I do. I don't have any discipline, though. I see all my writer buddies posting about their year in review and I'm like, "I SUCK!"

But I don't. I do write stuff. In fact I wrote a few things last year. I have half a dozen stories finished that I submitted for publication, too. In fact, I got a total of 16 rejections. If you buy into the mantra that every rejection is one step closer to publication, you'll see I'm still not published. Meh.

I'm 6,000 words into the rough draft of a new novel. It's mostly planned out. It has potential

I did the Story-A-Day challenge and have about 20 more story ideas, not counting the above, that are awaiting fleshiness.

I posted 15 times to my blog.


I have a reasonable excuse about my lack of productivity, though. Since June I've actually gotten off my rear end and started biking with some regularity. I'm averaging around 2.5 rides a week and 7.5 miles per ride. Yeah, I'm going blame it on trying to get less fat. The getting less fat, and more fit, is working, but I have a way to go.

So. My goals for 2017? Keep writing. Keep submitting. I have a full-time job and a family so I have to keep all that balanced. Sure would be nice to get a paid credit. C'mon, 2017!

Friday, September 9, 2016

Why It's Hard To Write: Douchebags & Jackholes

I'm sitting in the break room at work, trying to write on my own time, when these three knuckleheads come in and start debating last night's Panthers game.

Fine. It's a free country. Knock yourselves out. Had I watched last night I might even care. I focus and press on.

Then, Mr. Most-Vocal blurts out, "They should just do away with the extra point. It's irrelevant anyway."

Uh, no. The game is called "football". They'd have to change the name if they took away the only foot-driven way of scoring. What are you, a tourist?

Then, as part of his bloviated airtight theory on how team X can be invincible, he blurts out, "Irregardless..."

My knuckles whiten. 

Then some other douchebag walks in with a handheld coffee grinder.

And so, having had these stakes driven through its inspirational heart, my writing session has been thoroughly assassinated. Thanks, jackholes.

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Developing the New Book, part 3

Got so excited planning I couldn't take it anymore. Wrote just shy of 1000 words today. The spreadsheet is around 90% done in terms of major story beats, and about 30% done in terms of minor ones. Thinking through that much has motivated me so much. Today's writing has gotten me through a prelude and a scene. 

I may have even decided on a title. I'm fighting the urge to share it since it's way too early!

Friday, July 22, 2016

Developing the New Book, Part 2

As of this afternoon I've roughly mapped out all the beats of this new book based on Snyder's story beat approach, except for the opening and closing images. I figure I'll add them later on as the writing progresses.

This evening, I created an excel spreadsheet based on the handwritten one JK Rowling used to develop her Harry Potter work. I'll use this to fine tune the beats, sequencing details, and character activity as I finalize the plan for the book. Columns include Chapter, Scene, Day, Beat, Plot Summary, and a column for each character.

Using this method has helped me envision a story more completely than I ever have before. I'm very excited about it. My next step will be to complete the spreadsheet, use it to complete the plot and work around any holes, then begin the writing process.


Monday, July 18, 2016

Started Writing a New Book Tonight

Tonight, I started work on what I hope will be a new novel. After spending about 2 weeks learning about Blake Snyder's story beats, I spent this evening developing the first several beats of this new work. I'm about halfway through mapping it out, and I can see the rest of the story quite clearly. 

I am using a well-known story as a template of sorts (think O Brother Where Art Thou?/The Odyssey and Ready Player One/The Wizard of Oz), which feels kinda like cheating, but also not. Snyder teaches that most movies (and I see this readily applying to any kind of story) have the same structure of beats. In this sense, coupled with the fact that all characters, settings, and actual writing are entirely my own, I feel quite comfortable with the approach.

Not only is the approach entirely new for me, so is the genre and subject matter. Needless to say, I'm quite stoked. Let's see if I can keep that fire alive!

Monday, July 11, 2016

For the Convenience of All 3 of My Fans

If you're interested in a convenient listing of stuff I've written that's available on the interwebs, I'd like to invite you to visit my Stuff I've Written page.

Sunday, June 5, 2016

New Story Finished and Submitted

Tonight I finished a new story I started during the StoryADayMay challenge. "Throwing Shade" is only 780 words but I'm so happy with it I went ahead and submitted it. Keep your fingers crossed.