juniper: Typing at a computer. (Default)
Sunday, January 24th, 2010 07:52 pm
Last week, I handed BRAWL "The Half-Daughter's Curse," and I really didn't know what they'd think of it.

Today, I got back seven very helpful critiques. I have apparently done a good job of setting the voice of the story. People are kind of split on certain details - but not everyone likes every story. And as usual, I've managed to be subtle in all the wrong places. For once, I have been told to make a story longer, not to cut anything, but to add detail and explanation.

I never look forward to editing, but for stories that I know have problems, it's always a big help to hand them over and say, "Make of this what you will, but tell me what it is."

If I get published, it's going to be directly related to their help.
juniper: A stick figure at a typewriter working like mad. (monumental wordcount)
Wednesday, January 13th, 2010 08:49 pm
I just wrote a short story. A whole short story.

I've been sick for a week and a half, and writing at all has been a somewhat monumental chore, mostly because I couldn't think, but at least partly because the short story I *was* working on just doesn't want to cooperate. I need to figure out what's making the protagonist tick and nail down his motivation before it's going to go anywhere.

This thing just came blasting out of my head in a huge fit of frustration and gore. It's pretty gory. I'm not sure what I think of that.

But it's done. I'm going to do some editing on it before I post it to BRAWL, but I have to say, having a deadline can sometimes make all the difference. (Well, that and having a dream with a couple of images that firmly lodged in my head - and that I know are mine because I was off the cold meds last night...ugh.)
juniper: Hands with a pen and paper (editing)
Monday, January 4th, 2010 08:42 pm
Easter Lilies isn't done. I *think* I've figured out the major thing that was driving me up the wall on it, but I just don't have the energy to work on it tonight. I had enough trouble just generating some minimal momentum on What Would Have Happened this morning.

But I persevere. Wordcount *did* happen today, in spite of insufficient sleep, cold weather, and computer problems. (The computer problems are the reason I'm not sure how MUCH wordcount I generated - the data is currently trapped on a flash disk I'm too tired to jump through the hoops to access right now.)
juniper: Hands with a pen and paper (editing)
Saturday, January 2nd, 2010 05:44 pm
It's full of fertilizer, but it's a pain in the back and several other parts to get it from under the horse to the garden where it belongs.

Unfortunately, there's not much point in getting helpful critiques if I don't then apply them to the WIP. And equally unfortunately, nobody's told me the secret incantation for magically migrating the horse manure of my story into the compost crock of publication.

That metaphor didn't come out quite right. You all probably know what I mean, regardless.

(Why, yes, I am posting in my blog to avoid editing some more? Why do you ask?)
juniper: Typing at a computer. (Default)
Friday, January 1st, 2010 10:59 pm
Hopefully, this year, I'll get *something* published. And just to encourage myself, here's the state of the two active novels under development, and the short story that's due in three weeks:

What Would Have Happened
1213 of 5000

Iron Debt
28540 of 80000

A Paradox of Archons
4592 of 80000

That last one would be much more discouraging if I hadn't started it less than three weeks ago. :) Happy New Year folks.
juniper: Fuchsia with Fireballs (I am not nice)
Tuesday, December 29th, 2009 01:19 pm
I am open to evil opinions on what to do to my wussy protagonist here. ;) He is sufficiently full of himself as to need taking down a peg, and he's been offered probability magic.

I have some ideas, but I love hearing what other people think I could do with this. ;)
juniper: Typing at a computer. (Default)
Saturday, December 26th, 2009 02:51 pm
Iron Debt seems to be stalled out for the moment. I think I will have to let it settle for a bit and come back to it again once I figure out what it is in the background that's driving me berserk. There's a question I haven't asked because I don't know what it is, and once I have the question, the exploration of the answer should help me figure it out. I suspect that one will require a several-hour quiet period of brainstorming in outline to get 'round the block.

A Paradox of Archons on the other hand, is going gangbusters. Just what I need - another novel. ;)

Fortunately, What Would Have Happened (working title - I'm not pleased with it, but perhaps it will find a new title when it's done) came out of the bottom of the stack without a hitch, and the protagonist is now safely ensconced in the kitchen with a rather alarming sorceress who is about to get him into far, far more trouble than he knows. Heh. Heh. Heh. If I'm lucky, he'll have navigated the peril by the time it's BRAWL season again, and I'll have short work to hand off.

But before I go torturing him further, I must feed some starving cats.
juniper: Typing at a computer. (Default)
Monday, December 14th, 2009 08:11 pm
http://whatever.scalzi.com/2009/12/14/ethan-ellenberg-agency-looking-for-new-clients/

Well, there we go then. I've done my writerly ego-flagellation for the day! (They ignored me completely last time - I didn't even get a rejection letter, that's how bad it was.)

I need more stuff to submit. However, today is not the day when I will write more stuff to submit. Today, I'm lucky if I can type straight. One of these days, I'm going to get cited for typing while sleep-deprived, and they'll take away my Creative Commons License for a year and make me write essays as penance.

But just as long as I'm not sentenced to writing Documentation, or worse, Press Releases, I think I'll survive.
juniper: Fuchsia with Fireballs (I am not nice)
Saturday, December 12th, 2009 11:44 am
I like worldbuilding.

I'm building frameworks. Particularly, I'm building broken frameworks for my protagonists to wander around in and go, "What idiot made a universe like THIS? Can't you see that if you just give it a good shove here --" *SHOVE*

*ominous creaking from the set*

"Uh-oh..."

*more ominous creaking*

*evil laughter over the speakers*

"RUN."

In the real world, it is my job to iron-plate everything, to make it impossible to break it, tear it down, or shoot your foot off with it. Therefore, it's a real, honest, evil-wish-fulfilling joy to build something that I know is going to break, know that it's going to break in a big ugly interesting way on my characters, and know that it's SUPPOSED TO DO THAT.

My protagonists don't seem too pleased with me. Fortunately, they haven't found where I locked up the pitchforks yet.
juniper: A stick figure at a typewriter working like mad. (monumental wordcount)
Thursday, December 10th, 2009 05:57 pm
I have an outline of more than 2500 words, all written in the past few days in addition to everything else. I'm not done, either, but I seem to have the first three/fifths done, along with notes on the next fifth.

And I know how it ends. (Gotta have an ending, or I can't write.)

But I really *don't* usually outline like this. I have to, because I have to make sure that I'm not doing terrible things to the plot that will come back and bite me later, but at the same time...it feels weird.

I wonder if I will finish it or just give up in disgust and start writing?
juniper: Fuchsia rejected (rejection)
Wednesday, December 9th, 2009 10:30 am
I seem to be getting closer in terms of finding the correct sort of market for Trickster's Wish - it was apparently not entirely to editorial taste, but I was congratulated on writing a far-more original wish-granting story than the usual, and also on having it be well-written.

I know where I want to send it next, but they're shut for submissions until 2010, so in the mean time, I guess I'll just put it on the shelf and work on something else instead.

I'd rather Popinjay's Daughter or Easter Lilies and Imaginary Angels get published first, but the latter needs an attack with a red pen first, and in any event, I'm not sure how much choice I really have in the matter, short of not sending things out for attempted publication. :}

I got a suggestion on where to send Sufficiently Advanced Printing, so perhaps I'll try to get that out of the drawer this weekend.
juniper: Typing at a computer. (Default)
Tuesday, December 8th, 2009 08:36 am
The fabulous Margaret has gone and got me working on a *different* novel. I talked to her over tea on Sunday night, and muttered about this thing that I'd been working on a long time ago, and blah blah blah, I was stuck.

And she gave me one Word. It was the Word I needed.

Having acquired this Word, I spent over an hour yesterday starting to outline this thing. It's wandered in so many different directions over the years, and there's so much...well, stuff, in there that doesn't need to be there, and isn't central to the story. (And some of it is really awful.)

Looking at it from a critical perspective too, there're plot holes *galore* in there that need clearing out too, and questions that must be answered in my own head, even if they're not down on paper.

Also, must do research, as one of the two protagonists needs to be Not An American. The other one is from a culture that I am creating, which requires worldbuilding - the culture is a bit too nebulous in my head, and I need to know enough of the relevant bits to clear this up.

But the basic story that I came up with, what, 7 years ago? That is usable. And now I have the necessary Word (word of power!) to make it work.

Because, of course, I really needed *another* novel to work on. :}
juniper: Typing at a computer. (Default)
Tuesday, December 1st, 2009 10:45 am
In the light of day, I'm coping a bit better with the rejection from yesterday. I've sent The Popinjay's Daughter off in search of another locale, and checked over my writing page of other stuff I should be doing.

I need to work on rewrites. Blah.

Well, it's not New Year's yet. I don't have to make resolutions just yet.
juniper: Fuchsia rejected (rejection)
Monday, November 30th, 2009 09:23 pm
My rejections are now coming from second tier editors.

Pardon me, on a day where I was not struggling with the Bronchial Crud Of The Abyss, I would be absolutely *delighted* to hear that I'd had a short story make it out of the slush pile and into the second-level editor's stack, but today...

...not today.

(For those who are curious, Popinjay's Daughter.)

Wordcount will resume when I stop sleeping 18 hours out of the day, and the $payingJob calms down. It might resume before then, but I do not count upon it.
juniper: Hands with a pen and paper (editing)
Monday, November 23rd, 2009 08:45 pm
I started poking at Easter Lilies and Imaginary Angels this evening. I can see some places that need some serious work in here now, and I need to reread all of BRAWL's crits, but it's salvageable, and more importantly, aside from one day in early November, this is the first time I've felt like I might manage any writing at all for the past month.

Granted, the holidays are going to eat my life, but it's something.

It also has the nice side benefit of shutting up Ms. Grumpy-Protagonist-in-Hole over there, as she's also the protag for Easter Lilies. ;)
juniper: Fuchsia rejected (rejection)
Thursday, November 19th, 2009 08:41 pm
I got a rejection letter today from an agent for River's Wrath.

It was a *very* nice rejection letter, that boiled down to, "There are chunks of your manuscript that I really enjoyed, and chunks I didn't like so much, and I was torn...I'm very sorry I took so long dithering, good luck with your work, but I'm going to have to turn you down...this time. Please send me more of your stuff."

Ahem.

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAGGH!!!!! Dammit! Thank you, Ms. Agent. You are now on my list of marvelous people, and you will see future work but, but...agh!

*sigh*

I'm really, really starting to think I should pull the manuscript back from Baen and ask BRAWL to crit it.
juniper: Typing at a computer. (Default)
Sunday, November 15th, 2009 08:05 pm
Stupid $payingJob...

(The protagonist, by the by, is still in the hole, though she has progressed a bit further.)
juniper: Typing at a computer. (Default)
Tuesday, October 20th, 2009 10:11 pm
Protagonist: Hole! This thing, it is dark! And I am still in it!
Writer: Sorry, $payingJob sucked mightily today.
Protagonist: My paying job sucks too.
Writer: So you can sympathize.
Protagonist: I bet your paying job doesn't leave you stuck in a hole for 48 hours, though!
Writer: Have you been through Logan Airport lately?
Protagonist: ...
juniper: Typing at a computer. (Default)
Monday, October 19th, 2009 10:01 pm
Protagonist in hole.
Author not in hole.

Protagonist is very, very annoyed at her author for leaving her in hole overnight. Her author is tired and going to bed while protagonist is annoyed because she'll still be annoyed in the morning, but more importantly, I will know where I left her.

Because if I stay up late and take her out of the hole, in the morning, she'll go off in all directions at once when I'm not awake enough to keep up. ;)

I am very amused by the dimensions of the hole. And slightly "oh dear, that's obvious in hindsight, isn't it?" [personal profile] jenett knows.

(Also: the AbsoluteWrite forums are very, very dangerous. To both my wordcount and my $payingJob. I think I will need to put a kibosh on reading them outside of lunch hour.)
juniper: Typing at a computer. (Default)
Saturday, October 17th, 2009 03:04 pm
My spouse is a boardgame nut. He wants to get his boardgames published. He reads Boardgame Geek.

I am a writing nut. I want to get my writing published. I read...?

Thanks to a very funny, tasty-sounding Making Light post I appear to have found my board - AbsoluteWrite.

Now the trick will be to avoid spending all my time reading forums when I should be writing.