Well, It’s been a couple weeks since I put out a writing journal, so I thought I’d get you up to speed on the projects I’ve been working on.
Sam Kane: Into the Fire is still out being read by an agent, so I’m trying not to change anything there. Having said that, I did copy the file out and started toying with the idea of an alternate ending. Cough.
I was invited to submit to an anthology about space battles a while back. The original deadline for submissions came and went without my having submitted anything. This is due in no small part to my being a novelist at heart. Everything I wrote for it was too long (guidelines asked for 3-6,000 words). I received an email that the deadline had been extended to September first, so I sat down and started over, completely trunking the previous idea. I am now on the second draft of a great story that’s coming in around 3700 words! I’m using the next couple of days to tweak the ending, then I’m sending it off. Working title is: First Contact.
My writer’s group is also doing an anthology with stories based around a fictitious book store. I haven’t submitted yet, but I did put my story into the group for critique. I’ll get those critiques this upcoming Saturday, then I have some time to make tweaks as necessary before submitting. I hadn’t originally intended to submit, but then this idea came to me and I couldn’t help myself. That story, once I realized that not only was I going to be writing one, but had it totally figured out in my head before I even started typing, came in at 3800 words, which is great given my nature to be verbose. Title is: Charisma.
There’s another novel project on the plate at the moment. Very lose, very rough draft happening. Not flowing out in any sense of a linear stream. I find myself writing these little scenes, which is so easy to do in Scrivener. This means that I don’t have to push forward through bits that I don’t have figured out yet, or worse, stall on those bits and wait weeks to get these scenes out of my head. I can use Scrivener to put those scenes down and sort of connect the dots after.
At WorldCon, I found myself really inspired by everything going on around me. Before I knew it, I had two fully formed ideas for stories rattling around in my head. I won’t go into a lot of detail about them, but they’re cool. I wrote them out so I wouldn’t lose em.
People keep asking me about my space opera, which makes me A) feel good about that project, given the level of interest and B) think I should be working on it more than I am. It’s kind of funny. I’ve given you a couple of excerpts here and here, if you want to refresh your memory. The idea was actually to do some world building for a different story I have. In order to tell that story right, I needed to setup the world, the history, in my own head. Most of the time, that stuff never makes it onto the page as a piece of fiction someone else might be interested in.
But as I was working on that back history (which would be ‘the future’ to you and I), I realized that there was another story worth telling. Told from the viewpoint of four (maybe five. Sigh.) different characters, three of whom I had fleshed out immediately, this is the story of how we go out into space, the politics involved, how both impact life on earth, what it means to have just two superpowers, American and China, left in the world, and about the balance of power shifting to an unlikely source.
I know the story I want to tell, I’ve done the research, I have the characters (a fifth reared his head recently, throwing me off a little), but this is still very much a middle burner project. It’s not on the front burners, but nor is it on the back – more like it’s sitting on that little bit of space between them where you set a pot down to keep it off direct heat but still warm…
I will admit, I am submitting the first chapter to my writer’s group for a little critique action. I’ll let you know next month what they think. 🙂
Um, two more things rattling around. I have a pair of brothers, Malachi & Madrighan, who run around a sword and sorcery world causing problems. I wrote a piece recently that clocked in at 5500. I like everything except the ending, so I need to rework that. Also, a little something from left field popped into my head one night. 3000 words later, I had a story about an aging rock star who used to investigate supernatural occurrences who is pulled into the search for a little girl who is taken from her home by something he thought he’d killed twenty years before…
Good, right? First draft, needs work, but I think it’s a decent concept.
Okay, that’s it for today. Back to writing.