Tag Archives: editing

Ten Days…

We have a new toilet!

(No, it hasn’t been ten day since the leaking toilet saga started, although, come to think of it, it might be close to that. It’s just that the new toilet was the most exciting part of my day.)

The bathroom still needs to be put back in order but that can wait. I’ll do a little bit tonight and probably finish tomorrow but I’m too tired and sore to do much tonight. (Hopefully that won’t take ten days.)

In ten days Camp NaNoWriMo starts, as does NaPoWriMo. I’ll be doing both, as usual.

For those who don’t know about it, NaPoWriMo (National Poetry Writing Month) is based on but not affiliated with NaNoWriMo. It’s a challenge to write 30 poems in 30 days and post them on a blog. I actually find it easier to write 50,000 words than 30 poems.

As for Camp… I haven’t quite decided what I’m working on.

I should work on edits, preferably of Onyx Sun or The Academy of the Accord, but I never do well on editing goals, so it looks like I’ll be writing again. I’m just not sure what. I’m torn between Song and Shadow or Hedge House so I’m kind of thinking of maybe doing both, adding 25k to each.

Ah, well… I have over a week to not come to a decision…

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Now What?

Have you ever finished a big project and suddenly found yourself feeling lost? You spend so much time and energy and focus on a project and then suddenly it’s done and there’s a huge void, no matter how many projects are waiting their turn.

That’s sort of where I am right now. Yesterday, courtesy of a wonky internet that kept disconnecting, I finally finished going through the last book of the Academy of the Accord series (not counting the very incomplete prequel) and now I’m sort of like, “What do I do now?”

I mean, there’s a long way to go on it yet – I’ve barely made a dent in the project but still…

What do I do next?

Do I keep working on the Academy of the Accord? If so, do I start by printing Book 1 and going through it and taking notes for the concordance?  Or do I go through the books that are already printed (from many years ago) and see what I might have changed in them and make the changes to the files before I print them. Or maybe do both, since the printed ones start at Book 5 or so?

Or do I take a break from the series to work on something else? I mean, one of my goals for this year was to release Onyx Sun and I pretty much haven’t touched it. (Yeah, I know. It’s only the first day of March.)

And a friend is not-so-patiently waiting for another Elven Bard novel.

And there are an unknown (because I’m scared to actually count them) number of Works in Progress and Plot Bunnies waiting in the wings. (Seriously, I could write and release a book a year and live to be a hundred and still have more to go.)

But will I even be able to work on something else since I seem to be on fire for it at the moment for some reason?

And I’d really like The Academy of the Accord to see the light of day before I die and I’m not getting any younger.

Of course, that goes for the rest of the Elven Bard novels, Onyx Sun, the Other Mages trilogy, and a host of other books and trilogies in various stages of completion, too.

*sigh*

But on a brighter note, I’m pretty sure I’ve just talked myself into continuing with The Academy of the Accord. I’ll get Book One printed soon and in the meantime I’ll start looking through what’s been sitting on my shelf for years.

Here’s to living to be a hundred and twenty…

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T.G.I.F.

(Someday that “F” is going to stand for “Finished” but for now we’ll settle for “Friday.”

Only one more Friday in Bedlam. People who work with special needs kids do not ever get enough credit. Or money. I know I couldn’t do it long term, or even for a five day week.

Still plodding along with The Academy of the Accord. Only two more books to get ready to print. (I’m not counting the prequel as it’s nowhere near done.)

The last book I worked on had chapter breaks… Starting on page 70. Yeah, no. I added a few before there. Probably a few too many but I’ll sort that out in edits.

Some of the books were printed ages ago (I knew that) and have paperclips marking their chapters, as well as margin notes and post-its (I’d forgotten about that). I suppose I should probably go through them before I print them again.

Then I got a bright idea to change something in the last book. It’s not going to affect the outcome at all, but it will affect large parts of text and will make me have to work in a new subplot.

Maybe by the end of the year I’ll be able to start a solid round of edits and bible-building.

(Yes, I know it’s only the end of February. But there’s an overwhelmingly long road ahead of me…)

So, anyhow, it’s supposed to rain this weekend so my plans are to curl up with a bad draft of a good book or two, drown myself in tea, and see if I can get ready to start the comparisons with what was printed earlier by the end of the weekend.

And blog hop and set up my weekly posts for the next month.

Happy weekend, everyone!

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Plodding Along

And I have chapters!

And possibly a cold.

And probably bronchitis.

And how was your weekend?

I went to my mother’s on Saturday and took both dogs with me. I took my two out for a potty break and hers got out too and all three ran circles in the snow, chasing each other and having a great time and completely ignoring me when I tried to get them to come in.

I finally got the Demon Dog inside, but the Diva was having too much fun on her “girls’ day out” and I might as well have not existed.

Then mom’s dog (Hershey – yes, she’s a chocolate lab) took off around the front of the house with the Diva in hot pursuit and I lost sight of them.

By that time I was starting to panic, worried that something would happen to the Diva, and, in addition to my own guilt if something happened to her, my roommate would kill me.

So I trudged along after them, following their tracks in the snow, breaking through a crust of ice and floundering in snow halfway up to my knees.

Fortunately they hadn’t gone far and came when they saw me and I was able to grab the Diva’s leash. (And she walked very nicely beside me on the way back, which should have been my first warning.)

Got her inside with my feet soaking wet (sneakers are not the best shoes for breaking trail in the winter) and freezing cold and discovered that all four of her legs were covered with blood. (She’s white, so it was pretty noticeable.)

I cleaned her up and there were no big injuries, just some tiny scratches and scrapes from breaking through the crust on top of the snow and continuing to run like a maniac.

Through all of this it was probably 13 or 15 degrees Fahrenheit out there, so I spent yesterday feeling like death warmed over and left to congeal again.

Today I’ve only felt like death warmed over, so not quite as bad, although it still hurts to breathe. (We had a snow day today so at least I didn’t have to go to work.) Since I felt semi-alive today I got chapter breaks put into the book that didn’t have any. I’m pretty sure they’re temporary and will move a lot.

Anyhow, I’m back to work tomorrow (or so my checkbook hopes) and am finally back on track with getting the Academy of the Accord ready to print for editing and concordance-creating.

Here’s hoping the momentum continues.

 

 

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Chapters

And the lack thereof.

So I finally finished the latest untangling of the middle books of the Academy of the Accord series, and thought I was finally in for some smooth sailing to get the rest of them ready to be printed.

I was wrong.

When I write, I put in chapter breaks. (Usually labeled “Chapter Break” because I lose count. I put the numbers in when I do the first round of paper edits.)

When I get a manuscript ready to print for editing, I have each chapter start on a new page. (It’s just how my mind works at organizing things.)

So, I opened the next book and did a Ctrl F to find the word “Chapter” and Ctrl F said “Word not found.” And I said “What the F?” and tried again in case I’d mistyped it.

Nope.

There are no chapters.

And I said “F” a lot. (Without “Ctrl”)

How?

How could I have written this whole novel and never put in chapter breaks?

And how could I have read through it multiple times and never noticed that I didn’t put in chapter breaks?

At any rate, I decided it could wait until tonight, but work left me with a migraine so now it’s waiting until tomorrow so I’m not tempted to delete the whole thing. (Kudos to teachers and support staff who deal with a roomful of special needs students five days a week for nine or more months of the year. You all are a special breed of human who deserve a whole lot more money and recognition than you’ll ever get.)

But at least I got the most problem-filled book printed after work tonight so it’s ready to be attacked with paper clips, post it notes, highlighters, colored pens, margin notes, etc.

I should probably start on that fairly soon, while the memory of what I was trying to accomplish with that mess is still semi-fresh. (There is likely to be more swearing in my near future.)

But tomorrow I have to go try to help my mother recover and reset all the passwords that she lost because despite my best efforts to orient her to the truth she is under the delusion that I am some sort of computer guru.

(Some computer guru. I have a Word doc that is “Read Only” and I know I didn’t do that (at least, not on purpose) and have no idea how to fix it. *sigh*)

Anyhow, I hope everyone has a great weekend.

 

 

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I Finished It!

Really short post tonight because today totally got away from me and it’s already 9:00pm and I have to get up at 5:00 to get ready for work, just in case school isn’t delayed or cancelled. (Lots of places around us are already announcing a two hour delay but I swear this school district is allergic to calling it until the last possible moment.)

So, what have I done today?

Well, I shoveled snow and salted the sidewalk. Made a pot of chili. Mixed birdseed and filled the feeder. Played doorwoman for the dogs.

And, for the most exciting thing: I finally finished the paragraph by paragraph fixing of the spacing issue in the Academy of the Accord novel I’ve been swearing at for most of the month. Please cross your fingers, toes, eyes, and any other movable body parts that the remaining books aren’t like that because I’m beginning to think that it would be easier to just retype it than go through all of that again.

It seems that I’m following my heart this year – or at least at the present time – and working on the Academy of the Accord series.

I have a lot of stuff that is so much closer to being finished that I should be working on, but this is currently consuming me, despite trying to find a balance, so I’ve decided to just roll with it. I only have four more books to read through, then I can get them printed (one or two each pay) and start on the concordance.

(And if ever there was a series that needs a concordance, this is it!)

(Five books. Just realized I forgot about the prequel.)

So, anyhow, that’s been my day today. Well, that and a change in my work schedule that will result in an extra hour of pay and one hour less of commute.

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Word Problems

No, not the kind from math class where no one really cared where the trains were when they passed each other.

No, this kind is worse.

I’m on Book 8 (number subject to change) of the Academy of the Accord series, and I have no idea what happened to my formatting.

I usually use 1.15 line spacing, and “remove space after paragraphs” and double space between block paragraphs. (Yes, it’s a pain in the rear to do the formatting for Kindle later, but it’s easier for me to “see” it this way, and I spend a lot more time writing and editing than I spend on Kindle formatting.)

Somehow this book is… totally FUBAR’d.*

All of it seems to be in “add space after paragraph” mode (with the exception of a few lines here and there that I stumble across at random intervas).

And just to add to the fun, I just found a section with spacing of 2.25.

I have no idea how any of that happened.

I tried to paste the whole thing into a new document with proper formatting to see if I could get it to “use destination formatting” and that was a no go too.

And I can’t seem to fix the whole thing at once so I am going through and fixing every paragraph manually. I’m on page 88 of 316 pages (size 14 font: easier on old eyes).  At this rate I’ll still be on this book at the end of the month.

 

*FUBAR: F’d Up Beyond All Recognition

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February Goals

I’m still working my way through re-reading the Academy of the Accord series, and am up Book Six. Er… Book Seven. (I have to renumber them.)

Books Five, 5.5 (Six) and now this one are… a mess. Book Five is the one that I pulled a lot of stuff from to create Book 5.5 (because it didn’t really belong in Book Five).

The result is that Book 5.5 is a hodgepodge of stuff that needs to be tied together and finished. It has also somehow lost its plotline.

The one I’m currently reading through has a sequence of events that fail to fall into any semblance of a workable timeline. It should also win an award for the most plot holes in a single draft: two sets of wizards Warders in the same tower, one of whom is too young to have gotten her Master’s robes yet; one antagonist who has had something like three different names (and I still have forty pages to go); and a cadet who is there and then not there. (An overall timeline for the series would probably help a lot with that last issue.)

Anyhow, by the end of the month I hope to finished reading through them and have them either printed for editing or at least ready to print. I’m pretty sure they get easier after this one. (The next book might still be slightly problematic because of the timeline, but I don’t think it’s as much of a chaotic mess as this one is. At least, I sincerely hope it isn’t.)

I also need to get back to work on a concordance so I can pick up some dropped threads. (Book One has a couple dozen things that never got picked up again.)

Other goals are to get the changes done to Onyx Sun and figure out where I need to reinsert a scene that I cut and need to put back. (No, I don’t know why I cut it to begin with.)

And keep chugging away at Song and Shadow, although I may put that on hold until I work out an outline and start a concordance.

That sounds like an awful lot of stuff for four weeks

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Almost Gone

January, that is. But where? I can’t even figure out where today has gone, let alone this whole month. I could have sworn the year just changed a week or two ago.

I’m slowly getting used to my new day job assignment. I don’t seem to be quite so tired at the end of the day, at any rate. (Seriously. Who knew that riding a bus for seven to eight hours a day would be so tiring that all I want to do is sleep?) Of course, there were two days this past week where I didn’t work, so I don’t know if it really counts as getting used to it or not. One day was because the school district closed due to weather, and the other was the student being kept home.

I got my car inspected today, then got my second dose of the Covid vaccine, so those are both out of the way. And outside of a doing a load of laundry and taking a bag of garbage down from my room I haven’t done much of anything else.

Except read.

I’m working my way through re-reading the Academy of the Accord series so I read Book Four today, and so far it’s coming in as one of my favorites, although the ending totally sucks and needs to be completely redone. (Endings are a major weak point in my writing, but this one is especially bad and lazy. I really need to “read as a writer” and note how other writers wrap up their books.)

Yes, I know I’m supposed to be writing the prequel to Song and Sword, and I am still plugging away at it, but it’s not what’s calling to my heart right now.

And I’m also still poking at edits for Onyx Sun, and the rearrangement of my computer hutch is making that project much easier, so there is light at the end of that tunnel, although I’m afraid that my self-imposed deadline for it is going to go swooshing by. (Kind of like my To Do list that I just keep changing the date on.)

The Academy of the Accord, even with the amount of overwhelm and frustration I feel about it sometimes, is truly my heart project. I just sometimes despair of ever getting it finished and edited and free of continuity errors. (Especially that last one!)

Then there’s going to be the issue of finding a beta reader (or readers) for a 13 book series plus a prequel.

And coming up with titles for all of them. (Naming things is hard.)

And blurbs. Fourteen blurbs.

But one thing at a time. I have to finish writing a couple of them, and edit all of them, but I’ll get there. Eventually.

I just need to find a balance between the big picture and a narrow focus, and to a creative mind that frequently goes in several dozen directions at once – and multi-tasks in all of them – that is easier said than done.

 

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Over Booked

No, this has nothing to do with the overcrowding on my bookshelves. (Although it would be appropriate…)

It also has nothing to do with my ever-growing list of Works In Progress and Plot Bunnies. (Although it would probably be even more appropriate…)

No, this time it has to do with scheduling.

I know I always give myself a bigger list of things to do than any thirteen people could accomplish, but now I’ve gone and overbooked myself for Friday.

I had made (tentative) plans to go to my mother’s to get help with that damned waffle stitch scarf (that looks more like a lumpy pancake than a waffle), but then I realized that the month is almost over and I have to get my car inspected. No problem. Inspection, trip to my mother’s, done.

But when I was entering the inspection appointment into the calendar on my phone I realized that Friday is also the day of my second Covid vaccine and now I need to be in three places at once.

Meanwhile, as far as writing and such goes, I am making progress. Slow progress, but progress nonetheless. I fixed up the scene that I thought I’d already put into Book One of the Academy of the Accord series and hope to get it inserted before the week is out.

I’ve also come to the conclusion that I make my goals too big sometimes, and then they feel overwhelming and don’t happen. Like “Enter changes to Onyx Sun.” That’s a big project. I think I need to reword it to “Enter changes to one chapter of Onyx Sun every day.” That’s a lot less scary.

I’ve also come to the conclusion that I really need to stop and make an outline of some sort for Song and Shadow. I have no idea what’s going to happen and only a vague idea of who the Big Bad is and even less of an idea about how the reveal is going to go.

And while I’m working on the outline I should start a series bible.

*sigh* Here I go. Overbooking myself again…

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