Thursday, September 29, 2011

Darklight is Finished

As the title says, my current WIP, Darklight, is finished. Well. Sort of!

Greetings, Fearless Readers. A dreadful night of zero sleep plus a day off from work ended up victorious - as I gave up trying to get any sleep last night, got out of bed and FINISHED MAH NOVEL! Well. Sort of. Back to where I began.

I'm torn, as it's been soooo long since I finished a novel, I feel I deserve to celebrate. However. This book has so many problems. It was written it over such a long period of time, it can't help but sound disjointed. It has too many characters just standing around in scenes, not doing anything. The romance I wanted never developed, because the love interest wasn't in enough scenes. It doesn't have a real antagonist. Luckily, the little brain has been percolating as I've gone along, and I believe I have all my fixes, it's just a matter of going back and writing them in. *deep sigh*

No! No dithering. No sighing over what must be. The first draft is done. As it's been so long in the making, I'm not going to let this one sit and fester, I'm going right back in with rewrites. Most of it is foreign to me since it's been so long, anyway. Then to beta. Then to polish and sub.

How are you in your WIPS, Fearless Readers? Finishing? Beginning? Dithering? Sighing? I'm going to relax for a day, and then seize this mutha by the horns and get back to work.

Monday, September 26, 2011

For the Calendar Tells Me So....

Monday was teh awesome. I made some goals and I actually kept them.

I'm making use of Google Docs, including the calendar function. I made mention that I didn't keep a writing calendar this year and I really think it affected my productivity. For my regular journal, I like a dated, day by day calendar. For my writing, I used a month by month calendar and just jotted down my daily word count. I thought about using the Google docs calendar for that, but I noticed it has an hourly timeline on it. That's the problem with most online or electronic calendars - it's all about appointments. Then I thought... what about making appointments for the stuff I want to get done?

First, I admit, I went through and jotted in my "must see tv." Ok. I like a little tv. I have really really cut down my watching over the last few years. I have niche interests. I don't usually watch what everyone else is watching. I have only 4 or 5 must watch shows at a time, spread over the week. Then I went in and blocked out time to blog, just a half hour, then an hour for writing and an hour for editing. And I did all three of those things. Yay, Calendar! Yay, productivity!

Do not interfere with the will of the calendar!

Productivity and Organization

Greetings, Fearless Readers. I have yet to come to the end of Darklight. I really thought I'd be done before this. I was derailed by insomnia last week, which left me a stumbling, drooling automaton whose desire to write was el zilcho. I did do some outlining for my NaNo, though. The end of the year is coming, and November! I did a shit job of keeping a journal or track of my writing output this year, and I think my productivity suffered. I think it always suffers when I'm not organized. As we head toward the new year (the last quarter of this one will be done before you know it!) I'm all caught up in getting organized.

I don't think anything is more basic organization for a writer than an outline. The first outline I ever did was NaNo '09 and it was very fast and loose - maybe a page and a half of single line paragraphs with plot points. (I entitled it: What I know - Just like Oprah!) I wanted to write write write, with no looking at the wall and contemplating my greatness, just production of words. I wanted to know where I was going, or what I was aiming for that day. It helped a lot. I wish like hell I had done it with Darklight. I would up writing myself into wandering pathways that don't want to connect. I am now doing the outline with the thing almost done, and foreseeing lots of rewrites. The NaNo novel I plan on doing is currently a very detailed outline, lots of paragraphs and structure - I've even got it figured out by "books" or parts, - you know: Book I, Book II, very old school novel structure.

My other thing is with calendars. I didn't have one to keep track of my writing output this year - a mistake. I've kept one for the last five years, but not this year. A testament to how broke I've been! I had one for my "journal" - not a Moleskine like usual, but one of those Border's specials, a daily calendar sandwiched between two plastic flaps with a girly-Ed Hardy-esque pattern on it. I've already picked one out for next year, dammit. It has a calendar page for each day AND a section that has the whole month on one page so I can list word count. I'm also using the Google Calendar - I found it on the Google Docs page. I'm scheduling writing time, blogging time, editing time. I hope being more organized will affect my productivity, and get me in the groove for NaNo!

How about you? Do you organize your writing time? Do your organize your goals? Do you organize your plots? Do you know what you're doing for NaNo? Tell me in the comments. I'm dying to know.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

The Headache

Well, my weekend was blown. My nice 3 day weekend, with Monday off and everything, and all my plans to write and edit and post and make use of social networking completely screwed. And I apologize. This is one of the worst posts I've written. But, oh, do read on. If only to see how the universe has mocked me.

I woke up with a little headache on Sunday that soon emerged into a full-blown brain-matter munching migraine, the likes of which I have never experienced before. I am loathe to say I have migraines - I believe they are usually sinus headaches with pain, a little pressure on the face, the slightest aversion to light, and over soon. This one: Migraine with a capital M! It felt like someone had reached inside my cranium and put their hand on my brain and was pushing down on it. For no other reason than to cause me pain. Even moving my head made it throb. My glasses, the ones that fly off my face at the slightest provocation, were too heavy for my face. My dark cave of an apartment was too bright, even with all the lights off and the shades drawn and my eyes closed. The rag I wet and draped over the top of my head was not sufficient: it was WHITE and didn't block the ferocious sunlight that made it past my blinds and the 3 layers of sheet covering my two windows! Why are there two windows in my apartment, and why are they SO BIG!? These are not questions I normally ask.

And what medication did I use, you ask? The bone thrown to the mongrel of my pain?

One Tylenol.

That was all I had. I am so broke, I only had ONE Tylenol left in the farking bottle. The dogs that were my pain were not satisfied with such a small token to their ferociousness and redoubled their efforts.

We're not going to talk about how I opened the medicine cabinet this morning, all vestige of headache finally gone and the bottle of Aleve that fell out. For one moment, everything went over red and my eyeballs started to quiver in my head. Of course, we can talk about how I opened it in disgust and horror.

Only one tablet remained in the bottom of the bottle.

I wonder if the tablets of Tylenol and Aleve paired up and ran off, like the dish that ran off with the spoon. I did pause for a moment to listen to the laughter of the universe before I started screaming. I mean, it's not like there's anything else I could have done. Well, there are things I could have done, but I would have wound up in the looney bin or the pokey, and I would like to get some writing done this week.

Here's to better days ahead. And full bottles of pain medication in the cabinet.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Greetings, Fearless Readers

I am terribly sorry not to have been around. I've experienced a lot of ennui lately. I hope I'm using that word right.

But seriously. I lost my focus and wasn't writing, and I didn't feel like coming back and blogging like a writer until I had done some writing. And I have. I'm very close to finishing Darklight, an Urban Fantasy about a government agent (not our government, you understand) who looks for people with magical abilities. As you may imagine, that can get dicey.

I'm on Twitter now. Not that I use it very much - but I occasionally throw up a witty, profanity laced tirade you might enjoy. Twitter.

I've also written and subbed a short story for an Anthology. Miracle of miracles. I am not a short story specialist but I managed to get in there under the 10k limit, so, hallelujah!

Aaaand... more good news! For some mad reason, I went to check on my official "author" email that I use only for subbing. It's sat fallow for much longer than this blog - ever since last summer when I was sending out Jale of Dragonfael to agents. I found an email!! zoinks! No, it wasn't a request - but it was an incredibly positive response. The agent said the story wasn't for her, but my writing had potential! Did you read that?! I haz a potential! She urged me to re-submit to her in the future.

Two words. Wow. Za.

Also: (yes, I'm not done - I been up to a lot!) I've got my NaNo outlined. I even have the ending. First time that I've ever outlined a whole work. There's a little fuzz in the 2nd part of the story, but I have ideas for it. It's a gothic paranormal .... well, maybe I shouldn't say anything. But I really like it. I've got the plot. I need to do a little more character work. I'd like to know my main characters a little better before I get into it. I'm really excited.

And later tonight, I might make some cupcakes! Yes! Bakery goods! On top of writing and all that other stuff! I'm going to try and light up the social network scene this week - actually blogging and twittering and facebooking and everything. It's terrifying. I hope I survive.

Thank you for your patience, and I hope you'll be reading me again, soon.