Posts Tagged ‘ghost hunting’

(writing/cons/personal) Decisions to be made

It’s been a long week.  I seem to be saying that a lot lately.  I think it’s because it’s the end of winter – I’m so tired of the cold, and the snow, and the cold, and did I mention the cold?  I hate being cold.  I’d so much rather be hot than cold.  And I miss the sun.  But it seems like the days are so long, the nights are so short and I’m just not sleeping well.  I’m trying to stay positive, to keep myself looking towards the sun, but it’s hard.  It’s not that there’s anything wrong, per se (although I’m still looking for good job mojo for Hubby, who is still looking); I’m just bummed that winter isn’t over yet.

 

On a tangent, snow would be awesome if it would come down and be pretty in 60 degree heat.  Wouldn’t that be cool?  I would love it then.

 

Anyways, I’m looking at time right now.  Specifically, how much time I have to write, and what I have to do in order to get Winter Secrets ready for the world.  And I’m realizing that there is not enough time between now and Balticon to get it ready for the world the way I want it to be, not without taking some time off from work (which I can’t do, sorry).  So Winter Secrets will NOT debut at Balticon, but Into Thin Air will.  Yep, we will have ghosts.  And heiresses.  And a set of cops who are so in over their heads that it isn’t funny.

 

So for a while, I’ll be doing a few things.  I’ll still be working on Secrets most nights (because I do want to have the rewrite done for a November release of all three books, if I can), but I’m also going to be working on Deep Waters, which is the second Pendragon novella.  Into Thin Air is almost ready to go (it’s written and edited, but I want to do one more proofreading pass before I send out review copies).  I’d like to have both books ready to go by Balticon, with A Mother’s Love (the working title for the third Pendragon novella) in the works.

 

It’s ambitious.  But I think I can do it.

 

PS – Don’t worry, Schrodinger will still be at Balticon with me.  He’s very excited, and I’m afraid to see what would happen if I left him behind.

(writing) Updates

Wow, I really do suck at this blogging thing, don’t I?  I’m working on getting better, I promise.  Things have been stupid busy over the last two weeks, and some things have had to give.  I’m hoping to get a bunch of stuff up in the next week, though.

 

Here’s what’s been going on.

 

For starters, my new schedule is AWESOME!  I love it.  It’s just what I needed, and if that was the only thing that had changed, I probably wouldn’t have been so quiet here.  Of course, life doesn’t work like that.  There was the snowstorms, for one thing.  For all the poetic beauty of a snowstorm in New Hampshire, I personally hate them.  I hate shoveling, I hate being cold, I hate having to wear coats and shoes.  HATE IT.  I know, I know, I’m living in the wrong area.  Trust me, I know.  Winter and I do not get along.  There was my husband being let go from his job this past week.  That royally sucked.  No fault of his, either – the company was downsizing and sadly, contractors are always the first to go.  So if you are in southern New Hampshire (you know, Concord to Nashua) and you know of a shipper/receiver job, please let me know.  He’s a really good worker!  And then my great-uncle died yesterday.

 

Yeah, it’s been a rough couple of weeks.

 

But there are some good things coming too. I have a cover reveal for an author friend coming on February 17th, and I’m working on a new release of my own.

 

I’ve decided not to query Into Thin Air, but to make it the next release I’m doing.  And so, I had to commission a cover, of course.  There will be more on it later.  But isn’t it pretty?

PC1-ITA-350

So that’s been my last two weeks.  Hope you guys are doing better!

(writing) An update, only a little late

This week has not been good to most of my life, I’ll be honest.  I’m in the last week before my Remicade treatment, the weather is playing havoc with my allergies, and it seems like every one around me is sick at work.  The upshot?  A migraine.  Yeah, a migraine.

 

But despite that, I’m here, at the computer.  My words are nonfiction tonight (yep, I count blog posts as words, because dammit, I had to show up), but they are words, and this will be my 145th day in a row of writing.  Which is pretty damn cool.  Not sure what I’m going to do when I hit 150.  Maybe color my hair?  Something cool.

 

I’m almost done with Into Thin Air; I rewrote the ending to the last chapter last night, and now all I need to do is the epilogue.  Then it goes out to beta readers, and I start work on the next project.  Nope, not taking any time off.  Let’s be honest – I don’t want to break my streak.  And NaNo is fast approaching.

 

Something to keep your eyes open for – if you are heading to CapClave in October, I’ll be there!  Right now, I’m on 4 panels on Saturday and Sunday, but I’ll be around on Friday if anyone wants to meet up.  My schedule now is:

4 pm Saturday – Quoth the Raven

Panelists: Val Griswold-FordJames MaxeyTee MorrisJames Morrow (M), Steven H. Wilson
Forbidden Planet shows some strong similarities to Shakespeare’s The Tempest and Honor Harrington’s historical borrowings are easy to spot. But what if your influences and references are not as well known? How do you connect it for readers? Should you spell it out or hope someone catches your subtle references? What authors do this well?

 

5 pm Saturday – The Evolution of Fantasy

Panelists: Scott H. AndrewsVal Griswold-FordKathryn Morrow (M), Michelle D. SonnierLawrence Watt-Evans
Dark fantasy, Urban fantasy, and Tolkien fantasy are just a few examples of modern genre writing. Trends and tastes change over time. A Song of Ice and Fire brought gritty fantasy to the forefront. Is the reading public ready to move on? And to what?

 

12 pm Sunday – Magic’s Price

Panelists: Iver CooperVal Griswold-FordMichelle D. Sonnier (M), Jim StrattonAllen Wold
How do magic users tap mystical powers, and since there are no free lunches what is the price? What authors create the most interesting magical systems? What do authors do when the magic user becomes too powerful?

 

1 pm Sunday – Devourer of Books

Panelists: Judi FlemingVal Griswold-FordRahul KanakiaLeona Wisoker (M)
The speed reader gets to the end faster and as a reader they can outread every author they follow. They need new books, or old books to explore. Where do they get and keep their choices? General discussion of being a fast reader.

 

(writing) TGIF – seriously.

I should have remembered that Remicade weeks knock me for a loop.  I”m sorry I didn’t have a review for you guys for Wednesday, but I was so exhausted Monday and Tuesday that I just barely did my minimum for writing.  Between the Remicade and my allergies (which are just awful this year.  I swear, they get worse each year), I feel like I’m behind on everything.  I just gave up and called in sick to work on Thursday, so I could sleep.  Not catch up, sleep.  Yeah.

 

However, I’m still up to date on my streak, and I’m rapidly approaching 100 days of writing.   One hundred days.  I’m in awe of myself, really, and wondering if I can approach other things like this.  I just haven’t figured out how, but I’m working on it.  So, here’s the current state of the writing.

 

Into Thin Air  is chugging along.  I’m wondering if it will still be a novella by the time I’m done this rewrite, or if it will have grown into a short novel.  Either way, I’m starting to look at some markets for it.  It’s going to be e-published, either by an established publisher or, if I have to, by me.    I love this world, I love this story, and I’m determined to get it out.  Some how.  Anyways, my writing group saw the new first chapter, and really liked it.  Even those who said it wasn’t something they would normally read.  Yay!  For those who don’t remember, this is my ghost hunter book.  First in a series, one way or another.

 

Baker has a first chapter, and the beginnings of a second chapter, but I have some work to do, worldbuilding-wise.  This may sound weird, but I kind of hate worldbuilding.  Actually, I hate worldbuilding a lot.  Not the actual dreaming up the world, but the getting in and figuring out how the guts work.  Especially that.  Ugh.  I thought editing was my least favorite part of writing, but no, I really think worldbuilding is.  The reason I hate it is that I’m very much a big idea type of person.  I get plot ideas.  I get character ideas.  I really don’t get world ideas much.  I think this might be why I haven’t done any real fantasy stuff, and since I have now recognized this flaw in my writing, of course, I need to work on it.  So I’m going to start worldbuilding and outlining the Baker world for a while, and see what I can figure out.  Since I have three novels planned for this world, I really need to know what’s going on.

 

And, of course, I have to start outlining the third Advent story.  This one at least is a bit easier, because I get to work on a calendar schedule.  And the world is pretty well made.  Of course, this one is going down the rabbit hole (pretty literally), so I need to figure out some of the other worlds that they’ll get to.  And I think a certain pirate might show up….

 

That’s the state of the writing this week.  No snippets, but you might get one over the weekend.

(writing) Update on the writing

Happy Friday!  Happy August!

 

As promised, Fridays on the blog are writing days.  I’ve been plugging away at the rewrite of Into Thin Air, the very first Pendragon Casefiles novella.  Since I do a pretty extensive rewrite, it’s slow going.  Also, I’m exhausted this week, since my schedule has been all out of whack.  I’m hoping to get some major work done this weekend, but we’ll see.

 

I’m also working on the first draft of my new novel series, which has the working title of Baker.  The series title is Butcher, Baker, Candlestick Maker and it’s paranormal romance.  Lots of fun.  Witches in New Hampshire!

 

What’s coming up?  Well, once I finish the rewrite of Air, I need to start working on the next Schrodinger story.  Christmas is coming, you know!  I also need to start working on some outlines, I think – there are a few stories that are niggling at my brain, and I want to at least start planning them out.  Even if I don’t get beyond worldspinning on them, that’s more than I have now.

 

And I have to decide what next year’s plan is.  I’m continuing to write every day, and I will need some new projects!  (As my bunny brain goes “Yay!” and starts offering things.  Not yet, bunny, not yet!)  I have a bunch of ideas, and I’m toying with doing a series of short stories and self-publishing them next year.  We’ll see.  I need to decide soon, but not that soon.

 

And, since I haven’t given you much yet, I think you all deserve some actual writing.  So here’s a bit from Air.  This is the first in the series that I want to write, and it’s my ghost hunters.  Because ghost hunters rock, you know.

 

Sapph Pendragon is not a ghost hunter, exactly.  She’s a psychomorph, which is a very specialized type of psychic.  Literally, she turns into a ghost.  Which is damn cool, I think.  Lance and Amari are ghost hunters, and very skeptical of psychics.  Which is a good thing in the real world, but in my world?  Not so much.  Scottie is Sapph’s bodyguard.

 

Enjoy!

 

Lance looked over at her and Scottie, wondering just what he’d gotten himself into. This was NOT what he’d expected.

 

“I don’t know how to say this any way but outright,” he said finally. “Uncle Malcolm didn’t specify what kind of psychic you were, just that you were reliable. We don’t usually work with psychics…” His voice petered out as she grinned at him.

 

Sapph removed her glasses; her hazel eyes were bright with mischief, which worried him. “Malcolm told me it was a special case. Luckily for you, he sent a very special psychic.”

 

“Oh?” Lance couldn’t help it; he raised his eyebrows at her. “What kind of special?”

 

“Do you know what a psychomorph is?”

 

His jaw dropped. “You can’t be serious.”

 

Sapph nodded, her eyes sparkling. “I am serious.”

 

“What’s a psychomorph?” Amari demanded, looking back and forth between Lance and Sapph.

 

“A myth,” Lance said flatly, recovering. “A legend. There are no such thing as psychomorphs.”

 

“I hate to correct you when we just met, but they are not myths,” Sapph said. She turned to Scottie. “I like legend, though. Remind me to add that to my business cards.”

 

Scottie snorted softly. “As if your ego needed feeding.”

 

“Hey!” Sapph turned back to Lance and Amari. To Lance’s surprise, she squinted at the small dog still snuggled up under Amari’s chin. “I think it’s okay,” she said. “Bear hasn’t alerted, so that means that it’s quiet around here, parapsychologically-speaking.” She looked back over her shoulder at Scottie. “Do you sense anything?”

 

“No,” he said. “And Bear’s far more sensitive than I am. I think you’re safe for a short demonstration. But keep your jacket on, and keep it short.”

 

“Yes, MOM,” she said, wrinkling her nose. And then…she vanished.

 

“Holy shit!” The words exploded out of Lance’s mouth as he looked in awe at the spot where Sapph had just been standing – probably was still standing, he corrected himself. “She really is a psychomorph. They really exist.”

 

“What is a psychomorph?” Amari demanded again. “And where did she go? How did she do that?”

 

“She moved into the Ghostland,” Scottie said calmly, crossing his arms over his muscular chest. “That is her talent. She can physically move herself into the world of the dead.” He raised his voice a little. “And she needs to come back, as she’s not really dressed for ghostwalking right now.”

 

Lance forced himself to stare at the spot she’d stood in, and this time, he saw the ripple in the air, almost like the shimmer of heat rising from the asphalt on a summer’s day, right before she reappeared. Instead of heat, though, he felt an icy chill surround her, and her cheeks were bright red, as if she’d been somewhere very, very cold.

 

“How did you do that?” Amari asked, staring in awe at Sapph, her hazel eyes wide.

 

“I don’t know,” Sapph admitted, rubbing her hands together. “I just can. I’ve been able to do it since I was about ten or so.”

 

Lance was still staring at her, unable to look away. It was real. “It’s really real,” he said finally. “The Ghostlands. It exists.”

 

“Yes.” Sapph wrapped her arms around herself and shivered. “It’s very real.”

 

 

 

(personal/writing) Getting back into the swing of things

I’ve been writing again.  In fact, my new streak is at 8 days and counting.  It feels good to write again, like I’ve found the right thing that I need to be doing.

 

I used to wish I was one of those authors who could have two or more projects going at once, because they always seemed to be getting stuff done.  However, as part of learning my own process, I’m realizing that I’m not built that way.  I have two current stories going, and I’m going to be putting one aside so I can concentrate on the other one.  I can’t switch back and forth from different worlds – not when I’m writing, at least.  So I’ll choose one (Pendragon, actually) and then, once that draft is done, I’ll switch back to Midsummerland.

 

I’m okay with this.  Yes, it takes me longer to write and finish things.  But that’s okay.  It’s my process, and I’m owning it.  I have other things I can work on as well (like the page proofs for Last Rites), and the sooner I finish Pendragon, the sooner I can start shopping it around.

 

And that’s a good thing.

(personal/update/writing) I really don’t do this blogging thing well, do I?

I’m trying, I really am.  I need to get myself on a schedule again, where I settle in to write before work, so it’s done.  I also need to start working on more blog posts.  I just feel like I don’t know quite what to say, so blogging feels – I dunno.  Self-aggrandizing.  Ah well, I’ll get over it.

 

So, what’s been going on?  I’m still writing.  My streak ended at 54 days – I’m starting a new streak today after missing yesterday due to a ghost investigation.  It was a FASCINATING investigation, and I can’t wait to work on my recorder tomorrow.  I have something like 7 hours to listen to.

 

Writing news – I have the interior proofs of Last Rites, which are due by the end of the month.  I’m also working on the rough draft of Midsummerland, which I’m planning on having the rough done of by June 1, so I can revise it and get it sent on the agent hunt by September.  I’m still plugging away on Pendragon Casefiles 1 too, so don’t worry.  Ghost hunters will be out by the end of the year!

 

More later.  I just wanted to make sure that folks knew I wasn’t dead.  And that I’ll be doing more blogging soon.  I promise.

(personal/writing/health) Not dead!

In fact, I’m doing really well.  Just amazingly busy.  (What else is new?)

 

I’m up to day 34 of writing every day.  I leveled up last week, which means in order to get my points, I have to write 300 words a day, not 250.  I’m not up to NaNo level yet, but the habit is really sticking.  I have high hopes for Camp NaNo next month!

 

The current project is Pendragon Casefiles #1 – ghost story.  It needs a better title, but that will come.  At this point, it’s going to be a novella.  I’m looking at doing a series of them.  In anticipation of that, I submitted a prequel story to Every Photo Tells…  for their March photo.  As soon as that goes live, I’ll have a link for you!

 

I’m also still in training for my 5k run in April – only like 3 weeks away! Eek!  I’m so not ready.

 

But I’ll make it through.  The current plan is to blog here 3 days a week (Monday, Wednesday and Friday) and blog over at Cassandra’s blog on Tuesday and Thursday.  That blog is going to be more centered towards editing and proofreading, but there will be all sorts of things going on at both.

 

Also, con plans.  At this point, the only con I am planning on attending is CapClave in October.  I might go to Readercon, but I haven’t decided yet.  A lot depends on finances.

 

More info to come.

(personal/writing) 12 days and counting…

That’s the current chain on my writing.  I have now written at least 250 words for the last 12 days in a row.  I love it.  I’m finally getting things done.  I’ve already finished the rough draft of a short story for Every Photo Tells and gotten the synopsis for the first of the Pendragon Casefiles (which is the new series I’m working on) done.  I’ve also started the actual rough draft for Pendragon 1 (which really needs a title…so does the short story, for that matter).  I’m embracing a new me – one that does, rather than says.  One that writes, rather than talks about writing.

 

Race day is coming up too – April 6.  Just a bit over 6 weeks.  Eek!  But I’m heading to the gym, and I’m working on running.  I will cross that finish line.  I will.

 

Also, I’m branching out a bit.  Those who know me know that I’ve been building a bit of an alter-ego for a while, because I’m looking at branching out in the stuff I’m writing.  However, I’m changing her focus (sort of).  I was a copy editor and proofreader at a major newspaper for several years (the Daily Campus, which is the 5th largest daily newspaper in Connecticut), and I’m offering proofreading services.  If you are self-publishing, or just want to make sure your manuscript has no typos in it before you start submitting, stop by Cassandra’s blog to look at rates and other information.  I’m not editing right now (I don’t have enough time) but I’m a good, fast proofreader.

 

That’s life lately!  I’m trying to update the blogs as I get a chance, and I have several ideas in the hopper of things that I want to do.  Including a full website redo.  At some point.  And I’ll probably do a blog post soon about being a ghost hunter.  Especially since we’re getting busy!

(personal/writing) Goal met! And on to the next!

Today, I stepped on the scale and blinked.  Several times.  Guys, I’ve been trying REALLY hard to moderate my eating and to exercise, and I’ve finally broken through my first goal.

 

I’ve dropped 10 lbs.

 

It might not seem like much, given I’d like to lose approximately 100 more pounds, but it’s a first for me.  Yay!  I’m so excited!  Now, on to the next goal!

 

Today, I’m working on the first of the Pendragon Casefiles, as well as cleaning up the place a bit, and maybe making cookies.  Oatmeal cookies, with coconut flour and maybe apricots.  Depends on my mood.