Archive for the ‘short stories’ Category

(personal/writing/updates) The Weekly World Review, 2 weeks version

Sorry that this is late, but I’m getting over an eye infection AND an eye ulcer (in the same eye), so last week my computer use was limited. I even had to take 2 days off of work, which sucked. Oh well. The eye is healing nicely, and it doesn’t hurt to look at anything with a lit screen anymore, which is the important part. Apparently Crohns’ patients are prone to eye infections, which I am just learning about. Yay, compromised immune system! When you get this kind of thing, you get not one, but TWO medications to drip into your eye. I’m a fun person at the moment. At least I don’t look like I’m detoxing from a 4-day meth bender anymore.

 

But it put a cramp in my writing, my work, and pretty much everything other than listening to audiobooks. So I start this week over again, with new goals.

 

This week is also Great Northeastern War, which I will be going to. This is my final vacation of the year (and my only camping event, sadly), so I’m making the most of it. K-J and I are going up mid-week, and taking our time. Bear and Tayla are unimpressed, especially since we’ve actually reminded the landlords that no, they really don’t get handfuls of treats at a time anymore. If you hear howls, it’s from them.

This Week’s Goals:

Morning Pages: Going for all 7 days again. Sunday to Saturday, and not let the vacation derail me. I’m almost done with my first notebook! I’ll have to dig a new one out of my stash.

Writing Goals: Taking a bit of a break to let some noodling about Advent go on in my head. I think this week, I’m going to work on Lily and Spike, and a new Sapph short story. Both can be done long hand, and I don’t need the computer.

Non-Writing Goals: Finish Rachel’s bag, and then bring the cross-stitching for Brewcie’s coat, and washcloths to knit for Kris. I also want to make myself a lunch bag, but I don’t know if that will happen this weekend. It might.

 

I hope you guys had a great 4th of July, and I’ll see you in a bit!

 

(writing/organization) Getting my thoughts in line

I’m in a mood right now. There is so much swirling in my head that all I want to do is take a vacation from everything and just write. Sadly, I’m not independently wealthy, so that’s not happening. However, Balticon is coming up in two weeks, so I’ll get a bit of a break then! A working break, but that’s a good thing.

 

I’m setting up some KanbanFlow boards for myself for projects that I want to get done this year. I’m working on an anthology for Paradise City, as well as the finishing up of last year’s Advent and publishing this year’s Advent. Also, I’m working on writing Resonant Frequencies, so I’ve got a board set up for that. And I’ve got some short stories and poems (I know, weird, right?) that are kicking around in my head too, so I’m going to be working on those.

 

I want to do so many things, and I’m realizing that if I don’t make myself a schedule, I’m going to miss all the deadlines. I’ve already decided that I’m not going to try for Viable Paradise this year, as the book I want to use is not up to my standard. So I’ll keep working on it and try for next year. I’m hoping Kanban will work. If not, I’ll try something else.

 

Advent 2017 is going to be re-released and finished in July of this year (yay, Christmas in July!), so thank you all for being patient. And you don’t need to go back and re-read – I’m going to release all of it each day, just like in December. And I’ll have both Secrets AND Storms, as well as calendars, at Balticon! So cool! Let me know if you want one (I won’t be at a table, but I’ll have stuff). Also, I’ll have copies of the Complete Guide 1 and 2 – I’m out of 3!

 

Oh, and Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms on my blog! And yes, this is from Tayla and Bear, who wish to inform you that I am the meanest mommy ever, because I would not give them treats before I left this morning.

(writing) More Advent, of course

It’s getting to be that time of year again, after all. Yes, there WILL be a Carter’s Cove story this year. But I’m doing other things as well. I’ve just sent out a short story to a magazine for consideration, and I will be doing more short stories in the future. It’s an interesting exercise, and I think I need to hone those skills. First drafts will be posted to my Patreon, and then revised and sent out. And yes. I’ll be sure to announce if any of them get sold. 🙂

 

It’s my way of coping with depression. I’m realizing how unhealthy I’ve been lately, despite all my efforts. I need to concentrate on me. It needs to get better.

 

Christmas will be hard. I’m totally going to hide in Carter’s Cove for a lot of it. Besides, Molly has tea.

(writing) Day 2 of #100daysofwords

Day: 2
#100daysofwords
Starting Count: 2511
Ending Count: 3823
New Words: 1312

Opening Line:
The ring of the doorbell woke me from a half-confused state, somewhere between research and sleep. For a moment, I thought the book in front of me, open to a confusing swirl of stars and what I think might have been a cross between an alligator and a spider, had moved in my hands, jarring me. There were too many legs either way.

Closing Line:
Afterward it had left the room, I waited, listening for the front door to close. Once it did, I rose and went back to my room. Tomorrow would be soon enough to call Tallin, and by then, the stranger would have joined his god.

Day 1, again

Day: 1
#100daysofwords
Starting Count: 2989
Ending Count: 3380
New Words: 391

Opening Line:
Sapph filled him in quickly. “So if we take her words at face value, there’s no reason for this place to be haunted,” she finished. “But I can feel the Ghostwind here, a lot stronger than if there were no ghosts.”

Closing Line:
“How do you know?” Sapph said, following his gaze. The main room they were in had a large oak card catalogue and three desks, each of which had a typewriting and a stack of books on them. There was a microfiche machine in one corner. And on the air was the scent of old paper and the faintest trace of mold.

Darling:
The building they were in now was not the building she and Scottie had entered. It was smaller, and Sapph could see water damage creeping down the walls. It lay like old mold over everything: almost decorative, not interfering with the books she could see in the old bookcases, but definitely there. The books were large, substantial looking, but the titles were missing. She wondered what she would find if she opened one. “Do books have ghosts?”

(writing/updates/personal) Good intentions rarely survive the first fight

Because I can mix metaphors with the best!  And seriously, it’s how I’m feeling right now.

 

Why?   Because I had PLANS for October, dear friends.  PLANS in all capitals.  And real life looked at my plans, patted me on the head, and said, “You’re adorable, did you know that?”

 

I have a book coming out on Friday.  Did you know that?  No, probably not, unless you’re me, because all my plans to do a blog tour and get the word out and be giving you guys teasers all month did NOT happen.  Why?  Well, work blew up and I got sick and LIFE.  LIFE with all capitals.  Welcome to my world, where 24 hours is just not enough.

 

I could put the launch off, but I’m not going to.  I refuse to give in to circumstances.  Besides, I’m going to be on Mitchell Plested’s “Get Published” podcast on Sunday, and it’s all about the book, so you know…  But I’m not kidding myself.  There will not be a lot of storming the lists, or anything like that.  I really wish I could not be at work Friday, so I could promote the hell out of it.

 

I mean, come on!  It’s a ghost novella!  On Halloween!  And….

 

Oh, yeah, I suppose I ought to tell you what book is coming out, huh?

 

Into thumbnail

 

 

Isn’t it pretty?  Here’s the blurb:

Shipping heiress Sapph Pendragon never thought about how to use her unique psychic gifts. Not until a phone call brought her to a small town in New Hampshire to help a pair of ghost hunters discover what really happened to a missing girl. But will the detectives investigating the case accept their help? Or will Terri Reynolds be missing forever?

 

This book marks my decision to not write what “the market” (whoever decides that) wants, but to write stories I want to read, and publish them under my own name.  It combines three of my favorite things: ghosts, mysteries and police detectives.  I’ve described it as “Ghost Hunters meets Criminal Minds, with a bit of Supernatural thrown in.”  Although it could be Midsomer Murders too.  I just don’t know enough about England to set it there.

 

It’s going to be a great ride – this is the first episode of a six-novella first season.  I have enough stories planned now for 10 potential seasons of 6 novellas each, but we’ll see where the ride ends.

 

Okay, more news.  Another reason to do this now is because it means the novella will be live by the time Tales of the Tesla Ranger: The Life and Times of PG Holyfield comes out.  This is the anthology Tee Morris and I are putting together of stories starring our friend PG, who passed away far too young.  Included in this anthology is a short story called “The Guide,” which happens after this novella.  It’s a bridge between Book 1 and Book 2, which will be out in February 2015.

 

Finally, tomorrow, I’ll have the Pendragon prequel story I did for Every Photo Tells – “What’s Past is Not Always Past” posted here on the blog.  If you’d rather here Katharina and Mick read it, you can do so here.  I’ll post the link again tomorrow, with the hard copy of the story.

 

And Friday?  Friday is going to be fun.  Not just because it’s Halloween.  Not just because you’ll be able to get your hot little hands on Into Thin Air.  But because…

 

Well, you’ll have to wait and see, won’t you?

(personal/writing) An update – PG Holyfield Memorial

So I didn’t really write today, although I did read a lot.  Tee Morris (of the Ministry of the Peculiar Occurrences) and I are co-editing an anthology in memory of PG Holyfield, called “Tales of a Tesla Ranger: The Adventures of PG Holyfield” and I was editing stories for that.  I have an original Pendragon story in there, Tee has a story, and there are some amazing stories in there as well.  I’m not giving any more details yet, but if you were at the memorial tonight, you heard about it.

 

But I was also thinking tonight about lost opportunities.  PG will never get to write again.  We’ll never get another Aramas Kragen story.  We’ll never get him reading anymore.  So here is my plea tonight:

 

Don’t wait.  Don’t wait for “tomorrow” because it never comes.  Make the time NOW to do what makes your heart sing.  Share your passions with your friends.  Let what makes you YOU out into the world.

 

I’m taking my own advice.  There will be an announcement coming up very soon about the Pendragon Case Files, so keep your eyes peeled here.  There is more fiction coming.

 

I have stories to share, and I don’t know how much time I have left.  So thank you, PG, for teaching me to be proud of my geekiness, and I just wish you didn’t have to die to teach me it.

 

I miss you, PG.  I miss you, and I don’t think I’ll ever stop.

(personal/writing) Not really dead yet

Just quiet.  I’ve been dealing with life, and now I’m sick.  *sigh*  Did I mention that my immune system sucks?  Seriously.  Someone coughs down the street and I get sick.  So when I don’t take care of myself because of other things, I get run down really quickly.

And then I get sick.

So life has been…yeah, it’s not been fun.  I’m in a dark funk, to be perfectly honest, and although I know some of why, I don’t know all of it.  So I’m not talking about it, because why bother people with something I can’t figure out myself?  Which means not blogging.  Which means no traffic here.

I’m hoping to get moving soon.  I have a story that I’m finishing up, and then I’m going to be working on a couple of projects – the next Advent story, and a novel I outlined several years ago that I never wrote.  It’s time to write again.

 

(Personal/writing) Getting to a new normal

Tomorrow starts my new schedule.  For those who don’t follow me on Facebook or Twitter, I’m going to what’s called a 4×10 schedule.  I’ll be working Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday from 9:30 am to 8 pm, and have Wednesdays off.  Now, I still have an hour commute each way, but that day off in the middle of the week is huge.  The last time I had a 4×10, I was the healthiest I’ve been in years.  I’m really looking forward to getting back to that state.

 

Part of doing that is getting back to making my own food.  Yes, I talk about cooking all the time (or so it seems) but the truth is, for the past month or so, I’ve gotten away from really cooking.  Most of the stuff has been premade by the grocery store, or (sadly), bought at work.  Now, don’t get me wrong – my work has a lovely cafeteria with an emphasis on natural and locally-sourced foods.  But it’s expensive, and not free from cross-contamination from gluten.  And it’s expensive.  So today, as I take it a bit easy (because I haven’t done a 10-hr day in about 3 years), I’m going to be taking stock of my freezer and fridge and figuring out what to make for the next two days.  Wednesday night is a return to dinner WITH MY HUSBAND!!! So that will be a special one too.

 

I also want to write today, but I’m not going to push it.  250 words would be great.  Just enough to start my streak again.  I need to start brainstorming a February story (I may not do a full publication on it, but if nothing else, it will go out on the blog).  I also need to keep working on FTP’s worldbuilding/plotting and I need to write a plot synopsis for Into Thin Air.  I’d like to get that out the door for queries by the middle of February, so I can start working on other things.  I’m also going to start editing Advent #1, since I’m going to be releasing that at Balticon.  Gotta get moving on that!

 

(Also need to look at other things for Balticon, such as cards for Cassandra and tea blends for Molly.  And cards for Schrodinger!  He wants some.)

 

And no, not watching the Superbowl.  Might watch the Puppy Bowl, though.  Or not.  We’ll see.

(writing) A new year, and new projects!

New projects and new goodies for my readers!  I unveiled this on Facebook earlier today, but now I’ll share with you guys.  I’ve taken a challenge up to self-publish 12 of my short stories, one each month.  The lovely JA Marlow designed this month’s cover for Convoy, which is a short story set in a world of mine that I’m calling True Souls.  This story was originally published in the 2012 Forward Motion anthology “The Princess, the Boatman and the Lizard,” and is going to be available soon as an ebook.  I’ll definitely let you guys know when that’s available, but I have to share the cover now.

Convoy-VGF-1000H (1)Isn’t it lovely?  I am SO happy with it!

Now, this isn’t the only thing that I’m working on this year.  This year is the year of finishing and submitting things.  Right now, I’m working on the prewriting for my next novel, tentatively titled Faerytale Princess, which is about a female executive who is literally stolen away from her work’s bathroom by a prince of a magic kingdom.  It’s a fun romp, and the plan is to have it finished and out to submission to agents before November.

This month, I’m also starting to revise the very first Advent story, so it can be done as a novel.  I haven’t decided if I’m going to self-publish the Advent stories, or if I’m going to sub them as well.  I figure once I get them revised, I’ll decide.

My goals for this year are pretty lofty.  I plan on subbing at least three projects to agents/editors, writing and/or publishing 12 short stories and writing four new projects.  Those include the next Pendragon novella, and the next Advent story.

2014 is going to be MY year.  Be sure about it.