Saturday, November 26, 2016

Outlining to a Cheshire Moon

the most beautiful thing
First light and a wet moon smiles down on me from the top of the sky. When "the 'horns' of the crescent moon point up at an angle, away from the horizon . . . the moon's crescent takes on the appearance of a bowl or a smile." So it's a pleasant AM to have insomnia and continue working on my sci-fi/ fantasy young adult novel. 

A word on my new method of outlining. On a blank Word screen, I wrote out 22 chapter headings. I choose the number at random as a starting point. With characters and a rough idea of where things are heading, I add stream-of-consciousness info to chapters.  For example: here is Chapter 10:

"Four days later. Panic stricken Lysander despite having half the Light Horse camped on the outskirts. A small party sent forward, including Boris, Tambara, the sub-commander from the relief of the Dressel watch tower, and a political operative in charge; a nice enough older man, but very dogmatic, urging him not to antagonize the Veen under any circumstances. And to translate exactly everything that he says.

Tambara forces her way into the treaty party. Hopes Boris isn’t mad at her for refusing to take the honorarium and letter down to Lambert and Holly. "

These info nuggets serve as mental markers. Often, I will experiment with different outcomes to each situation, listing two or three possibilities. Right now, I'm up to almost 30 pages of scenes, dialogue, back story, etc. When I finish, I'll sort through and see what manner of story I can whip up. Next comes:

Time line.
Map the world.
First Draft
Second Draft
A lot more drafts.
Beta reads.
Send out to publishing house.
Continue until a sale is made.

Who needs sleep?

(Note: Now the Cheshire Moon has retired from sight for the day.)

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Insomnia and Back Story

Couldn't sleep, flipped and flopped; thought about the fantasy book I'm researching; had some great ideas for backstory; got up and wrote them all down, four pages, single-spaced. Now I'm considering going back to sleep. But I thought I'd post this rare triumph over my recent writing ennui. 

Friday, November 11, 2016

Hodge Twins Weigh In on Election

Propose Emotional Cooling Off Period

Salty language and surreal-ending warning as my intermittent fasting mentors, the Hodge Twins, offer insights and commentary on Tuesday's U.S. presidential elections.

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Happy Birthday, United States Marines!

241 Years Old Today

In 1775, at Tun Tavern in Philadelphia  Captain Sam Nicholas received his orders to recruit men for the Continental Marines, as they were then called.

 Capt. Samuel Nicholas
Now in their third century, the United States Marines continue to serve country and Corps with pride and distinction. (Today I recall one such Devil Dog, my friend Kurt, whose combat wounds led, in time, to his early death.) 

So on this November 10, a big old Semper Fi  to the men and women who wear the Eagle, Globe and Anchor. Accomplish the mission, be true to your unit, come home safe. 


Wednesday, November 02, 2016

Writing Projects Over the Last Year

My mental state today.

Progress Sucks

Since completing the last draft of Hallow Mass on this date in 2015, I've meandered aimlessly through the fiction wastelands.

As I prepped Hallow Mass for a late April launch, I spent a few months assembling book videos. First for 50 Shades of Zane Grey, then Hallow Mass. Next I set up a nice YouTube channel.

Then I started writing a science fiction novel. Progress lasted until July. This was followed by an attempt to write and sell a tub of short stories. That fizzled also due to lack of author follow-through. (Save one short story still under consideration.)

Desperate, I briefly considered jumping into NaNoWriMo.

Where did the stinking year go?

I'll complete something soon, long or short. This I so declare.