Writing in Public: Day 10, Month 6

Well, the day’s writing wound up getting interrupted in a few different ways, so I didn’t get to start “False Seer” like I had wanted to. I did, however, finish the second draft of “Fire with Fire.” It is coming in at around 8,000 words, and I’m thinking of expanding it and making it my entry to the Writers of the Future this quarter. There are some complications arising in the story telling. Good complications to the plot, that is. But, we’ll see. I’ll be brainstorming that a bit tomorrow while I decide my next move.

In the meantime, the rough draft of “False Seer” will begin tomorrow morning, and that should be the bulk of the day’s work. I also have a flash fiction idea that I am tossing around, one that would tie in to the novella “You Are My Brothers” from the perspective of one of the female knights before the events of the novella.

Here are today’s numbers:

Blog Posts: 158
Planning and outlining: 000
Short Fiction: 3,997
Novel Fiction: 000
Salable words: 000

Total Fiction for Month: 23,153

Total Salable for Month: 988

Total Fiction for Challenge Year: 224,780

Total Salable for Challenge Year: 45,382

Writing in Public: Day 9, Month 6

Earlier today I received word back that my short story “Common Cause” did not make the final cut for Third Flatiron Publishing’s Abbreviated Epics anthology, but it was on the short list. That in itself is encouraging. It is already off to a different market, so hopefully we will get some good results from it.

Now, on to today’s work. I spent part of the morning working at outlining “False Seer.” I plan to start the rough draft of that tomorrow. After I finished with that the rest of the morning and the bulk of the afternoon was spent working on the second draft of “Fire with Fire.” I have finished with the first three scenes, but there is still quite a bit to be done, not to mention more editing once the whole draft is gone over a second time. The plan is to finish the second draft tomorrow, and then immediately get onto the editing. This second sweep’s focus has been on adding emotional impact and tightening the language in the action-oriented scenes. There were also a few areas of the dreaded “exposition dump” that needed to be trimmed or worked in better.

Blog Posts: 224
Planning and outlining: 1,718
Short Fiction: 5,840
Novel Fiction: 000
Salable words: 000

Total Fiction for Month: 19,156

Total Salable for Month: 988

Total Fiction for Challenge Year: 220,783

Total Salable for Challenge Year: 45,382

 

Writing in Public: Day 8, Month 6

Today was mostly devoted to finishing up the Soulweaver flash fiction story “Barrels and Flasks,” which has since been renamed to “Casks and Flasks” due to its rhyming quality. It’s a little bit harder to say without tripping up my tongue, but hopefully that’s just me. Anyway, it came in at about 988 words and has been sent off to Flash Fiction Online. Hopefully it makes it to the winnowing process like “Blue Pearls” did.

Tomorrow the plan is to begin the second draft of “Fire with Fire” and start the rough draft of “False Seer.” I also want to continue planning out the “Still Water” novelette, but we shall see what the day holds. It’s a day free of any other work obligations, and I have to be up early anyway. So, the entire day will be devoted to writing. Let’s see what can get done. With luck, I won’t get overconfident and drop in hourly efficiency just due to the sheer amount of time I have to myself tomorrow.

Blog Posts: 198
Planning and outlining: 000
Short Fiction: 1,500
Novel Fiction: 000
Salable words: 988

Total Fiction for Month: 13,316

Total Salable for Month: 988

Total Fiction for Challenge Year: 214,943

Total Salable for Challenge Year: 45,382

Writing in Public: Day 5, Month 6

The rough draft for “Fire with Fire” is done! This will be my first short story written in the Soulweaver Universe, and also the first chronologically of the three tales written to date (The others being the flash fiction piece “Barrels and Flasks” and the novella “You Are My Brothers”). I plan for it to be no more than 6,000 words, and right now the rough draft clocks in at about 7,900. Of course it will need to be completely rewritten. I’ve noticed that my rough drafts still tend toward the crap side of the equation. I am able to draw the core story and certain details from a rough draft, along with basic story structure. But, other than that the whole thing is usually scrapped and rewritten from scratch. And then whatever I write in the second draft gets heavily edited in a third draft, and then lightly edited in a fourth and fifth draft.

By the end of it I tend to write three words for every salable word at the end of the line. So, for a story of about 6,000 words I plan to write a total of about 18,000 – 20,000. I want to be more efficient, but it’s a bit of a struggle for me. It is something I will need to do, though, if I want to up my productive output.

In addition to “Fire with Fire” I also spent a little bit of time editing “Barrels and Flasks.” Not much time, as I wanted to dive into the rough draft, but it’s a good start. There is more work to be done on the flash fiction piece, but I think it’ll be ready to send out sometime next week.

Further, I got started on the outlining for the Wendigo novelette “Still Water.” Mostly I was getting the characters and setting down. I want to spend more time tomorrow working on the actual story. I know part of it will be somewhat of a coming-of-age story, part investigation, part magical warfare against dark evil. It should prove interesting at the least. Hopefully by the end of tomorrow I will have a basic word count. At a minimum it will be 10,000 words. At a maximum, 17,500. It cannot exceed that maximum if I want to send it to the Writers of the Future at the end of the month.

Anyway, here are today’s numbers:

Blog Posts: 393
Planning and outlining: 000
Short Fiction: 4,872
Novel Fiction: 000
Salable words: 000

Total Fiction for Month: 11,816

Total Salable for Month: 000

Total Fiction for Challenge Year: 213,443

Total Salable for Challenge Year: 44,394

Writing in Public: Day 4, Month 6

Today was pretty productive. During the morning hours I finished the second draft of “Barrels and Flasks.” I should probably let it sit for a few days and then go back with a fresh set of eyes, but I might do some minor edits tomorrow morning for an hour or so before getting back onto the rough draft of “Fire with Fire.”

Speaking of “Fire with Fire,” I finished with the first half of the rough draft today. Part of it had already been written earlier, but I spent a good deal of time editing as I wrote, so I will consider it all new material. It still is only rough draft quality and will need a lot of work, but I expect tomorrow to go more smoothly. I’ve noticed that the latter half of a story can go much more smoothly once I’ve plowed through the first half. I guess I work out the kinks as I go and by the time I’m midway through a story the characters and plot are much more solid in my mind.

I would like to do some serious brainstorming on “Still Water” tomorrow, so maybe I can do that in the afternoon once the rough draft of “Fire with Fire” is finished.

Anyway, here are today’s numbers:

Blog Posts: 250
Planning and outlining: 000
Short Fiction: 4,059
Novel Fiction: 000
Salable words: 000

Total Fiction for Month: 6,944

Total Salable for Month: 000

Total Fiction for Challenge Year: 208,571

Total Salable for Challenge Year: 44,394

Writing in Public: Day 3, Month 6

Well, September is here and with it more chances to get a lot written. I have a few goals for this month, not the least of which is a novelette for the Writers of the Future competition. It will basically be a hidden excerpt from the first Wendigo Universe novel I am currently rewriting.

And by “hidden” excerpt I mean it is a set of scenes not included in the novel, but rather alluded to. There is a part in the story where the main cast comes across a literal fork in the road and the group splits, a few heading off in one direction while the bulk of them continue on. The branching roads then intersect once again at a town further on, and that is where the rejoin one another.

The group’s overall purpose is to investigate strange happenings in the Tundra Wastes, so for realism’s sake it makes sense for both roads to be traveled on. There will not be room in the book to follow both sets of characters, so the small group will be followed in this novelette. The working title is “Still Water” for the moment, and it follows a priest, a young nobleman, and an even younger quartermaster.

Now, as for today’s work the main focus was on getting a new flash fiction piece written. It is titled “Barrels and Flasks” and is set in a region of the Soulweaver Universe known as the Bickering Sea. I had hoped to finish with it and then move on to the rough draft of “Fire with Fire,” but flash fiction pieces are always a challenge. Telling a full story in 1,000 words or less is tough, but also fun. I am midway through the revisions of it, and hope to finish with that tomorrow before moving on to “Fire with Fire.”

Here are the numbers for today:

  • Blog Posts: 534
  • Planning and outlining: 000
  • Short Fiction: 2,885 (And all on a flash fiction piece, too! That’s rewriting for you.)
  • Novel Fiction: 000
  • Salable words: 000

Total Fiction for Month: 2,885

Total Salable for Month: 000

Total Fiction for Challenge Year: 204,512

Total Salable for Challenge Year: 44,394

Writing in Public: Month 5 in Review

Well, I didn’t keep up with the posting as much as I would have liked (At all, in other words), but I did manage to keep up with the challenge. While not as productive a month as I would have liked, two submissions were made and a third was missed (But will be finished the first week of September). They are:

“Common Cause” – 2,980 word short story set in the Wendigo Universe and submitted to Third Flatiron Publishing’s “Abbreviated Epics” Anthology.

“You Are My Brothers” – 2,400 word excerpt of a 30,000 word novella set in the Soul Weaver Universe and submitted to Tor.com’s Imprint publication line (22,000 words completed as of this post).

“Fire with Fire” – 6,000 word short story set in the Soul Weaver Universe and intended for Crossed Genre’s “Destruction” themed issue, but is general enough that it could be submitted anywhere accepting fantasy (3,000 words completed as of this point).

My plan for September through the end of the year is to write at least six short stories a month, in addition to a novelette-length work and to complete at least a portion of a novel, be it outlining, writing, or editing. For September through November, the plan is to do a rewrite of the

Total Fiction for Month: 48,023

Total Salable for Month: 5,380

Total Fiction for Challenge Year: 201,627

Total Salable for Challenge Year: 44,394

Writing in Public: Day 1, Month 5

And we’re off! I had some unplanned distractions during the day, so my actual short story writing was below what I intended, but that was all right. Between outlining and writing it came to be close to 4,000 words. I mostly finished with the rough draft of the Abbreviated Epic story, so tomorrow I should be able to get started on the revised draft. I say “should” because weekends are always odd. When I think there’ll be time it turns into a day of chores and errands and other stuff that ultimately is not writing.¬† It’s much easier to maintain a routine during the work week, I guess.

In any event, here are the actual numbers for the day:

  • Blog Posts: 000
  • Planning and outlining: 1,422
  • Short Fiction: 2,450
  • Novel Fiction: 000
  • Salable words: 000

Total Fiction for Month: 2,450

Total Salable for Month: 000

Total Fiction for Challenge Year: 156,054

Total Salable for Challenge Year: 36,034

Continuing the Writing in Public Challenge

Well, after a hiatus of two months (May through June) dealing with a family emergency, it’s time I stopped neglecting this website and get back to work.

The last real amount of writing I did was back at the end of May, but I have not been entirely idle in the meantime. A lot of brainstorming has been done on a new book idea (At present titled simply “Life Mage” just so I have something to name my reference files and to use as a header for my notebooks) as well as on a couple of novellas I would like to write for TOR Impact and the Writers of the Future contest, respectively.

I have also been taking advantage of what free time I had to delve into several books on writing that had either been recommended by authors I respect or that just happened to catch my eye at the local used bookstore. I’ve learned a lot, but it’s time to get back to writing if I’m to make use of the texts. It’s all well and good to learn more about writing, but it’s only with the act of writing that one truly betters oneself.

So, without further ado, the Writing in Public Challenge will begin anew tomorrow. Even though we’re beginning the 8th month of the year, this will be the 5th month of the challenge. It is my hope this will be my most successful month yet, but that remains to be seen. It is the goal, however.

Here are the current word count year totals:

Total Fiction for Challenge Year: 153,604

Total Salable for Challenge Year: 36,034

 

Writing in Public: Day 22, Month 04

Today I did not do any active writing, but I did quite a bit of brainstorming on a couple of stories, but mostly on the story¬† I want to write for Penumbra’s “Pain” themed issue. The story is temporarily titled “Pain Junkies” and is going to be something of a mystery/suspense story. I don’t write these as a rule, so it will be a good exercise if nothing else.

The story is almost planned out, but I’m still having trouble coming up with try/fail sequences. At least initially. A lot of this will come as I just sit down and write out the rough draft, but I really want to get better at handling that in the planning phases. Well, anyway, my hope for tomorrow morning is to get the tale written and revised, but I’ll be content with a completed rough draft and some more brainstorming on the revision.

  • Blog Posts: 179
  • Planning and outlining: 1,000
  • Short Fiction: 000
  • Novel Fiction: 000
  • Salable words: 000

Total Fiction for Month: 24,127

Total Salable for Month: 3,500

Total Fiction for Challenge Year: 153,604

Total Salable for Challenge Year: 36,034