Author’s Log: Ooh! Shiny! (& #ROW80)

Warning Some of you may or may not have remembered my mentioning the Tech Monkey getting rear ended in stopped traffic a couple of weeks ago, right after Comic Con. The other guy took complete responsibility for not paying attention with his insurance company, and things are getting resolved right quickly as these things go. As a result, the Tech Monkey brought home a new mamber of the family on Sunday, a bouncing baby convertible we are referring to as “Zoomy”.

Actually, it’s really an adoption of an older model, but it only had one owner prior to us, so for a 15-year-old car it’s in as mint a condition as can be.  Apparently, said owner only drove it to and from church in nice weather and rubbed it with a cotton diaper the rest of the time, like that Ferrari in Ferris Bueller. It’s my first convertible, and the nicest car I’ve ever owned, so YAY! This also means I’m terrified of driving the thing in Florida. Maybe I’ll only drive it to and from work on nice days, and rub it with a cotton diaper the rest of the time. 🙂

So we have been spending time dealing with all the ensuent rigamarole that goes with dealing with post-accident paperwork and new-old car Awesome.

All this means I haven’t been able to take my weekly trips to the grocery store to get those little things I need to cope. Namely, caffeine (I can’t drink the coffee at work, as it triggers stomach-related issues, and anyway can be easily mistaken for something siphoned from the La Brea Tar Pits). So I have been sagging and dragging these last couple of weeks.

Somewhere in the middle of all the Timey-Wimey and Wibbly-Wobbly, I managed to “cast” my Assassin for Big Dang Projeckt. Shelley Conn is utterly perfect for the “role”–in physical beauty, in mannerisms and speech patterns. This gives me a whole new angle on this character, and means now I’ll have no trouble figuring out what she’d do or say. I can simply see it, like some sort of strange, limited Jedi power. And she is even more fun to write than I anticipated. I love delightfully evil characters!

I also got to write another scene I’d been looking forward to. It’s a very sweet scene between my hero and his Minstrel, up in a peach tree in his mother’s garden, talking about how difficult it is to live up to their respective fathers’ examples. Meanwhile, there’s a couple of dozen children running amok below, on a scavenger hunt of sorts. All this includes a touch of worldbuilding in regards to festivals and myths–a myth that’s going to come into play later. Plus, we get a hint behind the mystery of one of my hero’s Helper character.  I’m officially referring to this chapter as the Chapter of Foreshadow. It’s going to be one of those that resonate later in the story as Events Unfold. If I do it right, it’ll give my readers chills. CHILLS I SAY BWA-HA-HA-HA-HAAAAAAAAA!!!

Ahem.

In other news, I’ve also finished typing Waking Muse #1 into the computer, completely rewrote the epilogue, and came up with a final rough draft count just shy of 18K. Now it goes away again for awhile to marinate until it’s time for revisions.

On to the foreshadowing, Status Updatery:

ROW80Logocopy Production Schedule (& ROW80):

BRIGHID’S MARK (In Production): All’s Quiet on the Production Front. At this point, it means I have a reprieve of sorts, as I struggle with revisions on Keepers #3. I did, however, receive a list of review sites from Editor Awesome where Samhain sends ARCs, which I may or may not be able to parlay into a Blog Tour. I’ll go through the list at a later date to see how feasible this may be. That being said, if any of y’all are interested in an ARC to review, or want me to drop by your blog for a guest slot, feel free to drop me a line. 🙂

MINSTREL’S DAUGHTER (Drafting): I broke the 40K mark! W00T!! This means I get to treat myself with a finger or two of my favorite whiskey and take stock of my progress. I am way further away than 5,000 words to my Midpoint, which either means that (a) this is going to be a longer book, with a distinct possibility of it clocking in at 100k, or (b) It’ll clock in much larger than the current 90K I have slated, but will shrink once more in revisions. I like to write a tight story, so I hope the latter proves to be true, but only time will tell. At this rate, my rough draft will take me into October, so I’ve got a new goal of Oct 31 to finish it. I’ve also outlined the scenes I need to write for the next three chapters. I’ve got two chapters left to Midpoint, at the end of which I’ll probably be at 50K words. After that, it’s only two chapters to Pinch Point 2, and then two more to the end of Act II and the 75% mark. If I push myself, I can easily finish Act II by the end of September.

KEEPERS #3 (In Revision): This is the weekend I have allotted for going all Beautiful Mind on this #^&*! draft. Meaning, I take physically take it apart, paragraph by paragraph, and reconstruct it, page by page. If this sounds exteme, you don’t know the half of it. But more and more lately, I’m reminded how my the craft of writing with where the story comes through it all its shining glory. I’ve had some time away from it, now it’s time to play Twister With Words. CHALLENGE. ACCEPTED. *dons construction hat*

Fortunately, I found myself helped along, once again, by the Bearded One Chuck Wendig, with this verily awesome tip list on Revising That Sumbitch: 25 Steps To Edit The Unmerciful Suck Out Of Your Story.

This is an absolute must-read before and during revisions. Seriously, it lit an unholy fire under my Writer-Monkey’s butt, and I now I wield the scissors, tape, and Red Pen Of Death like a fiend. Go forth, fellow monkeys, and read. And only then revise.

Also, this week I blogged over at the Samhain Publishing site (aka Publisher Amazing)  about how music instills pretty much every moment of my waking (and sometimes dreaming) life: The Music I Breathe.

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