Monthly Archives: May 2015

Wednesday Words #20 (5 – 13 -15)

Welcome to Wednesday Words!  Every Wednesday I will post some sort of prompt for a flash fiction piece.  The prompt will go live just after midnight Eastern time.

The prompt might be a picture, or it might be a list of things to include in a story, or maybe a phrase or a question or something from a “news of the weird” type thing, or a… who knows?

After that, it’s up to you.  But if you do use the prompt to write a bit of flash fiction (say, 500 words or so) I’d love to see what you came up with, so comment below with a link to where it is on your blog (or on WattPad or wherever).

(And a pingback to the post here where you found the prompt would be appreciated but isn’t necessary.)

Oh, and this isn’t a contest or anything.  It’s just a (hopefully) fun thing for all concerned.

And, hey, if it inspires more than 500 or so words, run with it!

This week’s prompt:

a list
a garbage dump
a lost shoe

 

And, as always, I’d love to see what you come up with!

 

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I Must Be Ill

I’m actually looking forward to starting work on editing The Onyx Sun.

I hadn’t planned on doing any editing this year.  The plan was to just write and try to finish up the first drafts of the (way too many) projects I have started. That’s what my 1K-a-Day Challenge is all about.

But I have missed getting something ready for publication.

Yeah, I know.  Everybody hates editing.  And I…. “Hate” is not a strong enough word for how I feel about formatting for Amazon and Smashwords.

But still…

There is something about editing that appeals to me.

I like focusing on details.  Writing is very “big picture.”  At least, it is for me.

In a first draft I don’t worry too much about word choice – I just leave myself a note to look for a better word later and get on with it. Likewise, I ignore repetition.  Who cares if a character has shaken his head twice in the same paragraph?  Not me, not in a first draft.

And I like seeing it all come together into something that I can share with others.

The Onyx Sun is now printed and in a three ring binder, and tomorrow is a day off from work.  My editing bag and I just might take a walk to the library where I can spread everything out and attack it with paper clips and various colors of pens and highlighters and Sharpies and Post-It Notes.

Unless, of course, I can’t wait that long and take a chapter or two to work with me today…

 

 

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Sunday Snippet May 10, 2015

Posting a few excerpts from a rough draft of a science fiction novel called The Onyx Sun. I’ve been ignoring it for a while, but since I don’t hate it anymore I’m starting editing it this month.

Keep in mind this is a very rough draft of something that I hadn’t even looked at for several months.  Also, the snippet has has probably been a victim of creative editing.

Summary:

Taliya Swann has been away from home negotiating a mining contract on another planet.  When she called to advise her mother (head of House/Company) that they had a contract, Maureena informed her that her grandmother had died the day before.  All that was left to look forward to was being reunited with her lover, Luzita.

Returning home, she was met by Regino, the butler, who told her that her grandmother’s funeral had been held the day she died.  Shortly after that she learned that Maureena had sold her lover into slavery because Luzita couldn’t afford to pay for her upkeep.  She brushed off Taliya’s outrage by saying she would find someone else, someone more suitable.

 

“Unlike you, Mother, I cannot turn my emotions on and off.  I can’t just go out and find someone else.”  She paused, locking eyes with her mother.  “Who did you sell her to?  What slave house?”

“What does it matter?”

“It matters.  I want Luzita back and I will find her.  Now, who did you sell her to?”

“An off-worlder, part of a merchant fleet.  I bought some wonderful Numali silk from another vendor there for less than half the market value.”

Taliya drew a deep breath, not caring now if Maureena saw her struggle for control.  “When?”

 

 

 

 

 

Want to read more snippets from some really great authors?
Check out Sunday Snippets on Face Book.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Technical Difficulties

I would have written and posted this before going to bed last night, but, well, it was already 3:00 in the morning and I didn’t think I was overly coherent.

Actually, I would have written this post before I went to work yesterday (it was on my to do list) but… see that blog post title up there?

Yeah.  That.

My computer (not unlike me) is old and cranky.   Unlike me, it can usually be coaxed and babied into cooperating.

Yesterday morning I suddenly had a black screen – nothing but the task bar at the bottom was visible.  It sorted itself out, I went on with what I was doing, got another black screen, followed by the Blue Screen of Death, followed by the computer rebooting itself, followed by a period of cooperation in which I did a panic-induced back up of everything I could before I had to go get ready for work.

Last night I spent over an hour trying to get my browsers to work.  I finally (around 2:30) got it stable enough to do my 750words.com entry and by then I was so frustrated that as soon as I hit the 750 mark I went to bed. (I still need roughly 200 words before work today to stay on track for my 1K-a-Day challenge)

It’s amazing how dependent we have become on these machines.  All my writing is in this box of electronics.  (Well, okay eight books of The Academy of the Accord series are printed and waiting for me to finish the other four and start editing, but still – who wants to retype all of that from scratch?)

Actually, all of my writing is now in this box of electronics and in a gmail account. (I’m still trying to figure out why I panicked – I email files to myself on a daily basis. so it’s unlikely anything wasn’t already there, but still… That’s how a writer’s mind works. Well, this writer’s mind, anyhow.)

So, what does everyone else do when their computer threatens to destroy all their hard work?

I need to renew Carbonite as soon as I get the money, but what about until then?

I mean, I can keep writing long hand and type it all up another time, but the thought of losing everything else is just… *shudder*

 

 

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Wednesday Words #19 (5 – 6 -15)

Welcome to Wednesday Words!  Every Wednesday I will post some sort of prompt for a flash fiction piece.  The prompt will go live just after midnight Eastern time.

The prompt might be a picture, or it might be a list of things to include in a story, or maybe a phrase or a question or something from a “news of the weird” type thing, or a… who knows?

After that, it’s up to you.  But if you do use the prompt to write a bit of flash fiction (say, 500 words or so) I’d love to see what you came up with, so comment below with a link to where it is on your blog (or on WattPad or wherever).

(And a pingback to the post here where you found the prompt would be appreciated but isn’t necessary.)

Oh, and this isn’t a contest or anything.  It’s just a (hopefully) fun thing for all concerned.

And, hey, if it inspires more than 500 or so words, run with it!

This week’s prompt comes from writingprompts.tumblr.com

ww prompt

(Click image for larger pic.)

 

And, as always, I’d love to see what you come up with!

 

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Not Writing

… is not an option.

When I finished Camp NaNoWriMo with a win pulled out with three whole hours to spare, I just sort of sat at the computer and stared at the screen and said, “Now what?”

For the last 30 days my mind had been constantly wrapped around writing 2000 words a day – or figuring out how many words a day I needed to write on my days off to catch up to where I should be. And especially the last three days when I was overcoming a 15,000 word deficit.

But then it was over and all of a sudden there was a huge void in my life.

It wasn’t that I didn’t have anything to write.  I still haven’t finished book two of The Other Mages trilogy (maybe next Camp…) and I still need to write the alternate (originally planned) version of book one of the Trilogy-Without-A-Name, and, of course, there are the rest of the books in the Academy of the Accord series, especially since I was just handed the solution to plot problems for two of them.

And I still had my 1K-a-Day goal (which I am, sadly, already behind on).

Not to mention there are other hobbies that tried very hard to distract me during April.

And, of course, there was the sense that I should probably find the shreds of the rest of my life and try to weave them back together.  (At least, I thought I vaguely remembered having one.)

So, I posted something to FaceBook about this sense of not knowing what to do with myself now and some of my friends suggested that I take a break for a while and not write.

Not write?!

Can you imagine?

That just… is not an option.

At first there was panic.  What would I do if I wasn’t writing? I can’t not write! I have word count goals! I have stories to tell! I have stuff to finish this year! I have to write!

And that is what it boils down to.

I have to write.

I need to write.

Not writing is not an option.

I think I might be addicted.

 

 

 

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Sunday Snippet May 3, 2015

Posting a few excerpts from a rough draft of a science fiction novel called The Onyx Sun. I’ve been ignoring it for a while, but since I don’t hate it anymore I’m starting editing it this month.

Keep in mind this is a very rough draft of something that I hadn’t even looked at for several months.  Also, the snippet has has probably been a victim of creative editing.

Summary:

Taliya Swann has been away from home negotiating a mining contract on another planet.  When she called to advise her mother (head of House/Company) that they had a contract, Maureena informed her that her grandmother had died the day before.  All that was left to look forward to was being reunited with her lover, Luzita.

Returning home, she was met by Regino, the butler, who told her that her grandmother’s funeral had been held the day she died.  Shortly after that she learned that Maureena had sold her lover into slavery.

 

“You sold her?”  Taliya was certain that she was hearing things.

“She could not pay for her back room and board or even for her current upkeep so I sold her to a slaver to recoup my losses.”

“She didn’t have to pay room and board.  Grandmother–“

“Your grandmother is dead.”  Maureena’s voice was cold. “This house now operates under my rules.”  Maureena’s smile was colder than her voice. “And under my rules, everyone pulls their own weight.  I don’t believe in charity.”

“You sold her…”  Disbelief still softened Taliya’s voice.  “You sold the person I love…”

“You’ll find another, someone more suitable.”

 

Maureena is all about the money…

 

 

 

Want to read more snippets from some really great authors?
Check out Sunday Snippets on Face Book.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Wins and Losses

 

Camp-Winner-2015-Web-Banner

I did it!  I validated my win with three hours to spare.

Let me tell you, it was a wild ride.

But an oddly productive one, even though I still haven’t finished book two of The Other Mages trilogy.  (I swear that book is going to be the end of me.)

The last thing I worked on was supposed to be a stand alone side story for The Academy of the Accord.  Instead, while writing it I somehow stumbled onto the plot for the last book in the series, which in turn let me kick some plot to book 10 which was woefully lacking in direction.

Of course, I now have an even bigger mess to sort out with those books than I already did.  But that’s for next year.  This year I just want to get the books written.

So, yay for story lines.  (I really should make outlines for those two books because 1) I like outlines and 2) the series is really getting too complicated to keep track of without them.)

So, so far it’s been a win-win.  I won camp and I got some plot issues sort of straightened out.

Oh, and I fought off a stray plot bunny (but I did take notes).

But now comes the loss.

That “side story” was a lead in for a scene I’d written introducing a character who was going to be a side story of her own.

No problem, I thought. I’ll just tack that scene onto this and worry about a segue when I edit.

Great idea, except I can’t find that scene.

Anywhere.

I will swear on a stack of Chicago Manuals of Style that I wrote it.

But it doesn’t exist.

It’s not in the folder for the series, it’s not anywhere on my hard drive, it’s not in any email (I email stuff to myself so it won’t get eaten in a hard drive crash), it’s not even in my recycle bin. (I was up until 3:00 in the morning trying to find it in my recycle bin.)

Did I hallucinate writing it? Did I have the scene so vividly in mind that I thought I had written it?

This isn’t the first time this has happened. I have stuff missing from two other WiPs that I was sure I had written also.

One of them, the missing scene is the climax – the battle with the demon that has been possessing women and trying to kill one of the MMCs.  I’m almost positive that I wrote it, but maybe I didn’t. (I hope I didn’t accidentally cut it in a frenzy of editing and rewriting.  I’ll have to try to find the original and see if it’s there. I save everything.)

The other missing part is about half of a WiP.  I know I wrote it, but the more I think about it the less I’m sure that I ever typed it up, which means delving into an unorganized bag of hand written stuff to see if I can find it.

I feel like I’m losing my mind…

Or maybe the fairies stole them…

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