juniper: Demon Boy on Fire and Happy About It (critiques)
Saturday, July 3rd, 2010 03:14 pm
I handed BRAWL the first three chapters of Iron Debt and said, "What's wrong with this?" I couldn't see anything wrong with it, but I knew there was. There always is, and with River's Wrath stuck in slush-pile purgatory, I have tremendous room for improvement here.

Well, they told me. Little devil boy up there is pretty much exactly how I feel about it. Ooo, scorchy! Yay, scorchy!! I'm probably going to have to sit down and assault using red pen. They don't want to see it again until it's done, but if I can whip the first three chapters, I am pretty sure I can *get* it done, because then, I'll have this *very* solid foundation to work on.

The Fabulous Margaret apologized afterward. She told me that she was sorry she'd been so harsh. I told her that was silly, and she should stop apologizing. It needed it, after all. :) And then we spent about an hour walking around, talking shop, and coming up with neat ideas for where I could go with it. I probably won't use all of them in Iron Debt, but I suspect that some of them will make it into Zytomancy.

Now, I just need to figure out where Ben Franklin is buried...
juniper: Typing at a computer. (Default)
Thursday, May 27th, 2010 08:51 am
Well, after floundering around for ages with Iron Debt, I finally broke down and wrote a ferblungit outline. I don't like outlining much - I'd really rather sit down and see where the characters take me. But the place the characters were taking me was a corner, where they sat and stared at the wall, and then at me, and then back at the wall, and so forth.

Outlining always feels like writing code to me. I can get away with not writing out the algorithm I'm trying to create in the code if it's short. Scripting, for example, where the entire blat of code can be seen on a single 80x24 text window, I can get away without diagramming.

But apparently, outside of the exception of River's Wrath, I need to outline novels, just as I need to outline code.

I'm sure better writers than me have figured this out much faster, but hey, I can be taught. And I have sort of rewritten Chapter 1 to take advantage of the outline. Now the trick is to go through the next two chapters and finish the jiggery-pokery necessary to make them line up mostly with the outline without getting bogged down too much in rewrites. And then I will hopefully be able to resume proper writing.

After Wiscon, though - I'll be there, but I have no idea what panels if any I will be going to. I do intend to hang out with the Fabulous Margaret if she goes to karaoke, though I may not sing.
juniper: Typing at a computer. (Default)
Monday, May 24th, 2010 08:51 am
One of my novels got hit with Plot Wanderitis, so I sat down to outline it. Over the past couple of weeks, I've been thinking about what I wanted to do with it, and scribbling out index cards that I could rearrange into approximately the right order. This morning, I wrote about 1800 words of nothing but outline.

At last, I know where I'm going with this story.

Now I just have to go back and do some serious overhaul of the early chapters.
juniper: Typing at a computer. (writing)
Thursday, May 13th, 2010 10:35 pm
I'm stuck on Zytomancy right now because of the rewrite of Iron Debt's outline - I should just decouple it and swap the protagonist to be somebody else, it doesn't have to be the character from Debt, but that's what I wrote at first. The more perplexing problem is "What does he do with his answer?" I haven't answered that yet, so the story is still in the pile.

But I got about 1000 words written today (about 400 of which are outliny description bits) for a story tentatively titled The Things In Lybob Forest, so I am not at all displeased. That one will potentially go to my writer's group if we meet this month, because I'm probably due up.
juniper: Typing at a computer. (Default)
Monday, May 10th, 2010 08:21 pm
...for I now have my rejection letter from F&SF for Easter Lillies and Imaginary Angels. It has been properly baptized as a piece of short fiction, and will now be sent to other, more likely markets.

But I had wondered...ah well. Someday.

In the mean time, I continue to struggle with the outline for Iron Debt, which is resiting with every last infected iota of Wandering Plotitis that it can muster. Stupid novel, don't you *want* to get finished? (Apparently not. But it will be anyway, one way or another.)
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: 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, 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)
Sunday, September 6th, 2009 10:13 am
I should hopefully have word count on something that's solely mine this evening. But in the mean time, I will simply observe that I really, really hope that this article about Urban Fantasy taking off in the SpecFic market is right.

Because yesterday was the one year mark from the last time I heard from Baen about River's Wrath, and while I am happily chugging away on Iron Debt, and trying to get my foot in the door on the short fiction market (two stories out on submission, third to go out in Tuesday morning's mail) I am still hopeful that someday, Wrath will see the light of day.

I probably should email the nice junior publisher at Baen and see if anything's happened lately. But for the moment, I think I will focus on writing. And hope does spring eternal, especially on lovely autumn days like today.
juniper: Typing at a computer. (Default)
Friday, August 21st, 2009 11:19 pm

When science meets fiction in a fantasy story, science usually wins unless there's a lot of handwavy magic going on, which doesn't work so well in urban fantasy all the time. However, my fiction appears to be dovetailing perfectly with the science which I didn't even know was there. Hee hee hee.

I need to do some more research, but I may just have been handed a really spectacular thingy.