Pausing to Learn

I have a bad habit (Well, numerous bad habits, but specifically in this instance…) where I tend to focus solely on writing to the exclusion of anything else. Editing takes time, and even though that’s where the real story appears it sometimes feels like a waste of time. I feel pressured to get back to drafting and redrafting, and creating something new to start the process over. I also sacrifice time spent reading and learning new things in order to draft more. Writing more is always good, but without involving learning in the process I’m just spinning my wheels in the mud. I’m not getting anywhere.

I wrote a ton of flash fiction pieces back in 2011, when I had a good bit of spare time. Every other day I was cranking out a few drafts of a 1,000 word story then sending it off to somewhere. And rather than read someone else’s work or try to learn a new process or technique, I would dive on into the next story idea. And guess what? Stuff was getting rejected left and right. At the time I just assumed it was because it was good, but not good enough to get published.

No, actually, it was all crap. Half-finished ideas, second-draft rather than third-draft material, world-building exercises rather than full stories (Still guilty of that one from time to time). I was doing everything wrong, and not learning a thing from it.

That’s bad.

Today my intent was to brainstorm ideas for an upcoming Black Library submissions deadline. I didn’t get any of that done. I spent my exercise time listening to a couple of Writing Excuses podcasts and came across a great video series on story structure by Dan Wells. He outlines a story structure he came across in a roleplaying game manual, something that works for any genre and really any medium (He uses both books and movies in his examples). The videos totaled up to just shy of an hour, but I spent nearly three hours going through it, taking notes, and basically absorbing everything I could from it. It was very illuminating, and I’d recommend it to anyone.

Suffice it to say, I didn’t get to work on my brainstorming, nor did I get to work on my own novel. But, I did learn a new method that I believe will help tremendously, with short stories and novels. So, a wasted day? I think not.

Work begins again tomorrow! Stay tuned for more updates.


Writing in Public 2015: Day 18, Month 1

Not much to report on today, from a writing perspective. I spent a good deal of the afternoon working on “Evaporated Ocean” some more. It’s been fully transcribed to the computer, and partially edited at the same time. I’m going to let it sit for a couple of weeks while I focus on drafting a new story next week, and work on a line-by-line and scene-by-scene edit of my Writers of the Future entry.

That’s really it. Wanted to work on my novel, but the short story ate into a lot of time. Also, I don’t think tomorrow will be much of a writing day. My wife and I are both off from work, which is rare. We’ll likely spend a good deal of it together, and some of that time will include reading. Maybe I can get caught up on Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson.

So, that is it for the next day or so. See you Tuesday!

Blog Posts: 187
Planning and outlining: 0
Short Fiction: 0
Novel Fiction: 0
Salable words: 0

Total Fiction for Month: 14,400

Total Salable for Month: 1,000

Total Fiction for Challenge Year: 14,400

Total Salable for Challenge Year: 1,000

Writing in Public 2015: Day 17, Month 1

Saturday’s mostly over, and a good bit was accomplished on all fronts except the novel.

  • Short Story Writing: The first fully completed draft of “Evaporated Ocean” is done! As I said, quite a bit of the changes have already been implemented in the three different outlines I made before ever putting pen to paper, so I’m fairly happy with the way everything’s turned out. It’s been transcribed, and now it just awaits more research on my part to tighten everything up. I’ve done a fair amount of the research, so I’ll implement the changes I can think of tomorrow into a pseudo final draft. The real final draft will come in a couple of weeks during the final editing phase.
  • Short Story Editing: The first round of “The Lone Blue Strand” has been completed and kicked back to Venessa Giunta at Fictionvale. This bit of extra editing during the week taught me that I can get short stories written and edit short stories at the same time. So, I’ve figured out how I can better get short stories finished, I think. I’ll get a story drafted up as much as I possibly can (3rd or 4th draft) during its week of creation, and then set it aside for a minimum of a week. Then during the “edit” week I’ll spend at least an hour a day working on it, getting it as tight as possible. Then, and only then, will it be submitted to its final destination. With that as my goal, next week I will finally finish my WOTF entry for Q2 and get it submitted.
  • Novel Outlining: No new work again. Hate falling behind, but those short stories knocked out my day more than I thought they would. Sometimes, short stories aren’t so short! Not on the time investment, anyway.
  • Fiction Reading: Read another chapter of Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson. Still not as quickly as I would like, but I plan to spend some time doing nothing but quality reading soon.


Blog Posts: 320
Planning and outlining: 500
Short Fiction: 2,750
Novel Fiction: 0
Salable words: 0

Total Fiction for Month: 14,400

Total Salable for Month: 1,000

Total Fiction for Challenge Year: 14,400

Total Salable for Challenge Year: 1,000

Writing in Public 2015: Day 16, Month 1

Yay, it’s Friday! Except, not yay. It’s another day, and Saturday will be just as busy. So, get back to work!

Not too much to say about today. Most of my time was spent between two different short stories, “Evaporated Oceans” and “The Lone Blue Strand.” Unfortunately my novel time got eaten up through a combination of chores and general time mismanagement. But, as always, stuff was accomplished:

  • Short Story Writing: I started what should have been the second draft of “Evaporated Oceans” and ended up becoming a redrafting of the outline and the beginnings of the third draft. Interesting how things develop that way, right? I had just written a line of description on page one, only to have that single line turn the story in a completely different direction from what I’ve planned. Because of that I lost a lot of my actual writing time and only completed four pages. But, I’m in a good spot to finish it tomorrow, and then get to work on the first round of edits Sunday.
  • Short Story Editing: I’m still down to the last couple of scenes here. Got some stuff accomplished, but a few paragraphs bogged me down for much of my time. Still, I’m on target for finishing it tomorrow.
  • Novel Outlining: No new work today, other than reading over stuff that was done before and thinking on some different ideas.
  • Nonfiction Reading: Writing the Blockbuster Novel by Albert Zuckerman. As expected, I didn’t get any of this read today. Shame, but such is life. I’ll at least finish a chapter tomorrow.
  • Fiction Reading: Read another chapter of Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson. Going slower than I would like, but even with the 3-52 challenge reading takes a backseat to writing. Maybe I should just schedule a catch-up day and that’s all I do.


Blog Posts: 805
Planning and outlining: 500
Short Fiction: 1,100
Novel Fiction: 0
Salable words: 0

Total Fiction for Month: 11,650

Total Salable for Month: 1,000

Total Fiction for Challenge Year: 11,650

Total Salable for Challenge Year: 1,000

WIPika Fridays: What Draft Is This Again?

Another week, another bit of productivity.

First on the block is the editing for “The Lone Blue Strand” for Fictionvale. I received the edits on Sunday night, and have spent an hour or so every day this week working on it. There’s still a little bit left to do tomorrow, but for all intents and purposes it’s finished. I’ll send it off tomorrow morning and wait for the second round of edits to come back my way.

Second accomplishment has been the short story codenamed “Evaporated Ocean.” It’s actually a rewrite of a short story I wrote back in 2012 that didn’t go anywhere with publishers. Looking back on it, I understand why: it’s unreadable! There are aspects of it that are neat (Such as the setting), but the characterization and plot were blah. Not coherent in any way, shape, or form. The core setting is largely the same, but the characters and plot have been changed almost completely. I’ve completed three outlines of it, and have started on what could be the second/third draft of it. I plan to finish that tomorrow, and then Sunday work on heavy edits for it.

First line from it:

Jisan paced along the dry ocean floor.

The name of the story will have nothing to do with evaporated anything, so I hope the idea of the ocean floor being anything other than wet will stand out to readers and make them want to continue on. I try to start my stories either with a conflict, or with a strange premise that grabs them. Don’t know that I succeed at it, but I know I’m a lot better than I used to be.

That’s something I should post up one day. A list of story first lines, from my earliest works to now. Should be amusing for somebody, at least.

The novel outlining has had its ups and downs this week. I’ve completed more than I probably would have had I not been on any sort of schedule, but I’ve officially gotten behind. I don’t know that I’ll be able to make up any time Saturday, but Sunday I will have to put my nose to the grindstone and get caught up. Even if it takes all afternoon and evening, it’ll have to get done! Fortunately we have leftover pizza that we made last week, so dinner’s sorted.

Where reading’s concerned, I’m also behind. I had hoped to finish with Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson before the weekend, but that’s just not happening. Same goes with Writing the Blockbuster Novel by Albert Zuckerman. I want to take my time with them and really read them, so it’s taking longer than expected. Alas.

Still, not bad for the second full week of adjusting to a new writing schedule. I need to hold onto this level of productivity, and ratchet it up. As long as I don’t slide backward, it’s all good from here.

Writing in Public 2015: Day 15, Month 1

Today was another day where not everything went according to plan, but a good bit of work still managed to get done. Let’s see what happened:

  • Short Story Writing: I decided not to finish the rough draft of “Evaporated Oceans” and instead focused on a revised outline based on what I already knew of the story. It shaped up quite nicely, with the appropriate (I hope) amount of rises and falls in the action, and a satisfying climax. The story is really about two friends reconciling with one another, but it’s set on the backdrop of a post-apocalyptic world and a dangerous situation. Tomorrow morning I will dive into the second draft and get all of it written before lunch. That’s my goal, and I’m sticking to it! I’m estimating it will be around 15 pages or so.
  • Short Story Editing: I’m down to the last couple of scenes in “The Lone Blue Strand” before I go back and finish up any other areas I thought were soft. It’s amazing how you can write and rewrite something, and it’s not until much, much later that you realize what you wrote doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. At least, not in parts. That was the bulk of today’s edits. Not the edits given, but things I noticed and wanted to change. Cutting a paragraph here, adding a couple there. It’s shaping up nicely, though!
  • Novel Outlining: Today began what Karen Wiesner calls the story evolution process in her book “First Draft in 30 Days.” During the next two or three days I’ll be going over the scene outline and my other notes to determine – and then tweak – the overall flow of the story, from the first mentioning of conflict and the story’s goal to the climax and resolution of the tale. All in all, it’s around 29 different points spread across Beginning, Middle, and End. I didn’t have as much afternoon time as I would have liked today, so I could only tackle the first 3 points in the Beginning. That is, a description of the initial conflict that starts off the story, a description of the true story goal (Not minor subplot goals and the short-term goals), and a description of the main protagonists who will attempt to achieve the story goal. This is likely an area that will be revised and edited as I go through the points in the Middle and End, so I’m curious to see how everything will turn out in the end. This is an area where I absolutely do not want to rush or screw things up. The last thing I want to do is get to the end of the rough draft and realize I’ll need to rewrite at least half of it from scratch because it needs to go in a completely different direction.
  • Nonfiction Reading: I read a little bit more of Writing the Blockbuster Novel by Albert Zuckerman, and likely won’t get to read any more until Saturday.
  • Fiction Reading: Now six chapters into my rereading of Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson. Enjoying every page of it so far!


Blog Posts: 485
Planning and outlining: 1,391
Short Fiction: 0
Novel Fiction: 0
Salable words: 0

Total Fiction for Month: 10,550

Total Salable for Month: 1,000

Total Fiction for Challenge Year: 10,550

Total Salable for Challenge Year: 1,000

Writing in Public 2015: Day 14, Month 1

  • Short Story Writing: It had been my intent to finish the rough draft for “Evaporated Ocean” today, but it didn’t happen. Got sidetracked completely by other things, namely outlining the novel. I’m trying to break up my day into three big chunks: short stories in the morning (Planning, writing, and editing), novel in the afternoon, and reading in the evening. Rigid adherence to this will likely be impossible, but it’s a good goal to push for. If I run out of time for one activity, shift gears to the next activity and keep going. Make up for lost time later.
  • Short Story Editing: I’m 3/4 through the first round of edits of “The Lone Blue Strand” for Fictionvale. I expect to finish the last couple of scenes tomorrow, and then Friday I’ll go back through it again to see if there were any soft spots that I either didn’t touch on, or didn’t notice before.
  • Novel Outlining: I’ve finished the first scene-by-scene outline for the first Wendigo novel. The story is currently coming in at around 90,000 planned words, or 360 pages. Already I see areas where this can be tightened and made more dramatic, so I’m looking forward to the next run-through on the outline. I’m going to continue forward with the plan from Karen Wiesner’s “First Draft in 30 Days” and see where we get with that before I go back and edit the outline. Once again, it’s getting me excited for the actual drafting process to come. But, I don’t want to rush it. The next two weeks or so are critical to getting this outline as close to perfect as possible. That’ll mean a lot less time wasted in the drafting – and then editing – process.
  • Nonfiction Reading: I’m halfway through Writing the Blockbuster Novel by Albert Zuckerman. This book is great. The chapter I’m currently wrapping up is the longest one detailing the outlining process. He uses Ken Follett’s The Man From St. Petersburg as his example, and goes through four different outlines for the book. It’s amazing what changed between the original draft idea and the final outline. It’s also heartening for anyone writing something for the first time (Be it their first novel ever or just the first time on this particular novel) because there are a lot of weak areas in the original draft, things I noticed immediately that I could tie into the outline I’m working on currently.
  • Fiction Reading: Three chapters into my rereading of Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson. Still as great as I remember it, and it’s been years. I’m trying to go through it at a slower pace this time around, to analyze story structure, character development, dialogue, etc. So far, an illuminating journey.


Blog Posts: 869
Planning and outlining: 2,847
Short Fiction: 0
Novel Fiction: 0
Salable words: 0

Total Fiction for Month: 10,550

Total Salable for Month: 1,000

Total Fiction for Challenge Year: 10,550

Total Salable for Challenge Year: 1,000

Drafty Wednesdays: A Look at “Snowmelt”

Yes, I still haven’t come up with a working title for this viking-esque romp. I’m not fully finished with the story yet, so that’s probably why. Sometimes story titles refuse to come to me until I’m ready to push it out the door. Not sure if that’s laziness on my part or if I’m just bad at naming things. Either way, here we are.

I’m deviating from the (currently) established norm and will not show the opening scene to the story. Instead, I want to illustrate how well a fight scene can turn out once it’s gone from crappy rough draft to less crappy second draft to hopefully brilliant (At the very least, passable) final draft.

In this fight scene, Ylva (the protagonist) is facing off against Randolf, a subordinate challenging one of her decisions to the point of questioning her leadership entirely. She is an experienced shieldmaiden and has only just recently been made jarl of her town, following the death of her father. A more established jarl could get away with not accepting a challenge, but not in her case. So, the duel goes on.

This is my first time writing a fight scene since reading the book Writing Fight Scenes. In it, Rayne Hall breaks fights/battles/scuffles/violent action into six main areas:

  • Suspense – the proverbial calm before the storm.
  • Start – what it says. The opening blows, the opponents sizing each other up, etc.
  • Action – the fight begins in earnest.
  • Surprise – optional depending on type of fight, but adds depth. Could be anything from a sword shattering to a monsoon occurring.
  • Climax – the final, decisive moves.
  • Aftermath – the winner dusts himself off, spouts a noir-worthy one-liner, and heads off for the next big hurrah.

I would love to show the whole fight here, as its final version is no more than 820 words from the very beginning of the Suspense phase (Even a bit before it, really) to the part where the victory has to choose whether to slay the defeated or not. But, since I’m going to be shopping this around to some professional magazines, I’d rather not shoot myself in the literary foot for revealing too much. Instead, the Start, Action and Surprise phases will be shown.

Rough Draft:


They circled one another, each holding their shields close, but with the rims facing their opponent. She had learned from her father long ago to do it


Randolf struck first, his axe head whistling through the air. Ylva stepped back. He swung again, too fast to dodge. She caught it on her shield. The blow reverberated up her arm. She hissed, and thrust with her sword, inside his shield guard. He jumped back. She pursued.

She pushed him back with a flurry of well-placed blows. She aimed at his thighs, his abdomen, his weapon hand. He dodged or caught the strikes on his shield. They approached the challenge ring’s edge. The crowd roared.

Randolf growled, and struck with his axe. Gods, he was fast. She blocked one blow, and then another.


A third strike connected. Her shield split, the axe blade held fast in the wood.

“Not even the Kraken could break that!” someone yelled.

A flash of anger ran through Ylva. Her father had given her this shield! She twisted and wrenched the axe from Randolf’s grip. She threw shield and weapon away.

Badly written, right? Well, that’s what rough drafts are for. Too much information (Does it really matter exactly how they’re holding their shields? They’re holding them. The reader can imagine it how they like), too many passive verbs (Was/Were). It’s also a bit lacking for a fight between individuals who are well-matched against one another, one with strength (Randolf) and the other with experience (Ylva). There’s also not much in the way of emotion on either’s part.

But, the basic structure is there. Let’s see what we can do to make it a bit better:

Second Draft:


They retreated a couple of steps, and then circled one another. Ylva kept her feet close to the ground, her boots clinging to the hard-packed dirt until she needed to move them. The crowd kept silent. No one wanted to miss the first strike.


Despite his earlier confidence, Randolf moved in cautiously. Ylva took advantage of his hesitance and slashed at his axe-hand. He jerked away and deflected her blade with the rim of his shield. He raised his axe to strike her, but stabbed just as he opened his guard. The point tore through his shirt and cut his chest. He grunted.

“First blood to the Jarl!” Tyr shouted, his voice almost lost over the screaming crowd.

Ylva tried to press her advantage, but Randolf counterattacked. The veins in his neck and head stood out as he advanced. His axe rose and fell in a flurry of blows. Ylva dodged some, but blocked others with her shield. The repeated impacts reverberated up her arm. Her shoulder grew numb.


Randolf swung again. Ylva raised her shield. Woodchips sprayed. He tried to jerk the blade free, but it held fast. She wrenched the shield back. The axe came with it. She flung shield and weapon away.

In this version another character, Tyr, is introduced. He’s basically the town priest and the one who oversees such challenges to the jarl’s authority. In this instance he’s part referee, part announcer.

So, it’s gotten better, even if not by much. There’s a definite build-up of action, and passive verbs have taken their peace-loving hippy ways elsewhere. While they’re all right in other scenes, they won’t do in action scenes. Or, I should say they’ll rarely do. There are few absolutes in writing, after all.

Now, for this last one – the final draft as of now – I’ll show just a bit more of the surprise phase. I decided on having two surprises during this fight: one where Ylva seems to gain the upper hand, one where Randolf seems to take the advantage back. It finishes in a brutal climax shortly after, but hopefully it’ll make it somewhere so everyone can read it.

Final Draft:


Ylva and Randolf circled one another. She kept her feet close to the hard-packed dirt. He made wide steps, as if to remind her of their difference in size. The crowd kept silent. No one wanted to miss the first strike.


Randolf lunged forward. Ylva danced back. He struck again. The axe glanced off her shield. She slashed at his exposed arm. He twisted away and deflected her sword with the rim of his shield.

He raised his axe. His shield shifted slightly. She stabbed into that sudden gap. Her blade tore through his shirt and pricked his chest. He grunted. Blood stained the ripped cloth.

“First blood to the Jarl!” Tyr shouted. The townsmen cheered.

A line of crimson ran down the length of Ylva’s sword. Her dagger had looked the same that day. Her chest constricted. Hot guilt burned through her. She couldn’t let it touch her. Not again. She flicked the accursed liquid away with a wild swing.

Light flashed overhead. Panic seized her. Sindri’s knife? No, Randolf’s axe!

She snapped her shield up. His heavy blade slammed into scarred wood. The impact reverberated up her arm. Her shoulder ached.

The veins in Randolf’s neck and head stood out as he advanced. His axe rose and fell in a flurry of blows. Ylva’s arm went numb. She gasped for breath. Gods, he’s fast!


He swung again. The axe bit into her raised shield. Woodchips sprayed, and the blade held fast when he tried to jerk it free. Her shoulder screamed in protest. With a cry, she wrenched the shield back. The axe flew out of his hands. She flung both away.

The roar in her ears drowned out the roar of the crowd. She rotated her left shoulder to work the numbness out.

Even unarmed, Randolf continued to advance. She stabbed and slashed. He dodged and blocked with his shield. Her sword went wide.

He stepped inside her guard. His fist connected. Pain exploded in her jaw. She staggered back.

Randolf slammed into Ylva. His weight bore them both down. She landed hard on her back. Her sword skittered across the dirt. She reached for her dagger.

He pressed against her flesh and pinned her left hand to her side. His arm pushed against her throat. She struggled for air that would not come. He leered down at her.

Ylva’s right hand scrabbled through the dirt for something, anything. Her vision blurred, and darkened at the corners. Fear jolted through her.

Ok, so part of that last bit is the beginning of the climax phase. But, I figured that last sentence was the best place to stop. The most dramatic place, in any event. Our heroine is seemingly down for the count. How is she going to defeat him? What’s for dinner that night? Oh, wait, that last one doesn’t get covered here. Sorry. (That’s what I get for writing blog posts before dinner)

It was during this draft that I really tried adhering to the 6-part structure, and I think it’s turned out ten times better than the previous iterations because of it. Is it good enough to sell to someone? Well, I’d like to think so. But, I know more work can be done on it. More work can always be done.

Oh, if you’re wondering what the “Sindri’s knife?” line is about, Ylva is suffering from a little bit of PTSD from the last battle she was in. I won’t say more, but there are instances of this scattered throughout the short story, reminders for her of a recent event that she is ashamed and horrified of.Anyway, I hope you enjoyed this foray into fight scenes. At the very least, seeing how horrible my earlier drafts are should encourage anyone to get a rough draft out. Even if you think it’s terrible, realize this: it’s terrible for most of us! Get through it, and get to the editing. Editing is where the real writing begins. It’s where the magic happens.

So, there you have it. My first attempt at writing a fight scene in 2015. Did Rayne Hall’s book help me? I think so. I’ve always loved writing fight scenes, but I don’t think I fully understood how to account for the build-up of action and the general ebb and flow of chaotic situations. But, I’ll have more experience in a short while. I’m currently outlining a book that will have several fights in it. I expect I’ll showcase more of them here.

Hurray, more exposure for my crappy first drafts!

Writing in Public 2015: Day 13, Month 1

Today has been a day full of (mostly) uninterrupted writing and reading. Quite a bit was accomplished on multiple fronts:

  • Short Story Writing: I’m halfway through the rough draft of “Evaporated Ocean.” It’s rough as rough can be, but I’m starting to see where the story will really shape up in the second draft. I’m looking forward to finishing and outlining the rough draft tomorrow, so I can get onto the second draft Thursday. In all, around 2,000 words were written, or 7 handwritten pages.
  • Short Story Editing: I’m also halfway through the first round of edits of “The Lone Blue Strand” for Fictionvale. Man, looking back on something I wrote in March of 2014 is painful, and I know it was better than what I was writing even in December of 2013. My craft has improved, but it still has a long way to go! So, yeah. Editing older stories can cause much cringing, but it is always therapeutic in its own way.
  • Novel Outlining: I’m now halfway through my scene-by-scene outline for the first Wendigo novel. Roughly 55,000 words, or 215 pages, is planned out. In a rough sense, anyway. There’s still much work to be done over the rest of the month, including finishing this summary outline. I hope to mostly finish with it tomorrow, and the rest on Thursday. Then the real work begins: bringing all of these scenes together in ways that further the three POV characters’ arcs, and the overall plot. Scenes that do not do at least one of those things (And preferably two or more) will be altered or cast out, and new scenes will take their place.
  • Nonfiction Reading: I have finally gotten back to reading Writing the Blockbuster Novel by Albert Zuckerman. I want to get this finished in the next few days, then move on to my next nonfiction book: Word-Loss Diet by Rayne Hall
  • Fiction Reading: Volume 30 of the Writers of the Future is finished! The book has many excellent short stories in it. Better yet, I’m finally starting to see what makes some short stories better than others, other than the nebulous, “Wow, I really liked that.” The more I study other people’s works – as well as my own – the more I start to see the framework of the story. Its beginning, middle, and end. It’s quite a bit of fun looking back at stories and trying to figure out exactly where all of that is.


Blog Posts: 413
Planning and outlining: 3,432
Short Fiction: 2,000
Novel Fiction: 0
Salable words: 0

Total Fiction for Month: 10,550

Total Salable for Month: 1,000

Total Fiction for Challenge Year: 10,550

Total Salable for Challenge Year: 1,000

Writing in Public 2015: Day 12, Month 1

All right, a new week. Mondays are always slow from a words-written standpoint. It’s my plan-the-attack day, where I try and come up with the game plan for the rest of the week. Outlining, organizing, reading. Still, I had hoped to get more actual stuff written, but life came up and I had to step into that role instead.

Still, a few things were accomplished:

  • Short Story Writing: I’ve decided on this week’s story. It’s going to be a post-apocalyptic choosing-one’s-path kind of tale, a story about two lovers reconciling with one another in the midst of very dangerous work. It’s ambitious, but I hope something good will come of it. The rough draft outline is finished. Tomorrow the actual drafting begins.
  • Editing: Last night I received the first round of editing notes for “The Lone Blue Strand.” As always, Venessa Giunta at Fictionvale is thorough. The edits are due back on Saturday, so I have broken the story up into manageable pieces each day this week. I’ll have it finished by Friday, if not a little sooner.
  • Editing: I also had a bit of time to work on editing “Snowmelt.” The story is gelling together quite nicely in its fourth draft. A fifth draft might still be necessary, but we’ll see.
  • Read Volume 30 of the Writers of the Future. I had some time to sit outside the house whilst waiting on things, so I brought my copy and kept reading. I read several great stories, ranging from fantasy (“The Clouds in Her Eyes” by Liz Colter) to science fiction (“What Moves the Sun and Other Stars” by K.C. Norton) to those written by established authors (“Robots Don’t Cry” by Mike Resnick). I will finish this book tomorrow, thus catching me up to this week. Then I can get back on track with Mistborn.

Tomorrow we get back on schedule with rough drafts, more edits, and novel planning.

Blog Posts: 673
Planning and outlining: 619
Short Fiction: 0
Novel Fiction: 0
Salable words: 0

Total Fiction for Month: 8,550

Total Salable for Month: 1,000

Total Fiction for Challenge Year: 8,550

Total Salable for Challenge Year: 1,000