January 2007


I found this article this morning: Get a Hobby (I shortened the title a bit). But go read it. It’s short and to the point.

As writing artists (I say that reservedly in my case *grin*), we sit and stare at computer screens and scribble in little notebooks, putting out story after story. But it’s good to get input once in a while. Something that’s not about writing or publishing or submitting or a story at all. Just life.

I go out and do yardwork. Or paint. Or read (just to read, not to analyze or to dissect or any of that). Or watch a movie. Or play a game with my kids. Because what are we writing, if not life? And life isn’t in a notebook or a computer screen. It’s all around us.

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I spent a good amount of time last night looking through the Fantasy Rants page. I like what this person has to say. There’s a lot there that can be extrapolated to SF writing.

I read some of these rants to my spouse who said, “You’re going to have to decide whether you want to please the critics or the public. I don’t care about whether something is written according to someone’s rules, I just care if it’s fun to read.”

And of course the spouse is always right.

If I had the choice between a fun read and a properly written read, of course I’d choose fun! Hey, I’m a genre writer! But I don’t think the two are mutually exclusive. Often, what makes something not fun to read is some error in writing craft. Telling for pages and pages. Lame plotting. Boring, two-dimensional characters. And the like. People will say, “This book just wasn’t as fun,” or “as good,” not knowing what the issue is, just that they didn’t like it.

Our job is to make this look easy. *grin*

Now that I have a variety of novels written, I thought I’d better schedule when I was going to edit them. So today I made a list of the rest of the year month by month. I won’t get to all of them this year, unless I double book myself (which might happen, I’m fond of multi-tasking).

Here’s what I came up with:

January:

  • edit Freedom (not going to finish this month, but I’ve made significant progress … even though now I see this needs a rewrite. Argh.)
  • snowflake my FebNoWriMo story (Test of Time) . I got to step 5 so far, I might jump ahead and start outlining just so I have what’s in my head down. (see sidebar for the Snowflake Method). If you want to participate in FebNo, go over to NaNoPubYe (see sidebar) and sign up.

February:

  • write Test of Time

March:

  • get caught up on the 2 Year Novel (2YN) class I’m taking over at Forward Motion (see sidebar for link) . The story is called Tachyon People.

April:

  • edit Clan Twelve

May:

  • participate in the Story A Day challenge over at Forward Motion

June:

  • snowflake a story for JulNoWriMo. NaNoPubYe had one last year, and there’s another site just for this which I never did much with.

July:

  • participate in JulNoWriMo.

August:

  • participate in the Labor of Love challenge over at FM. The idea is to write as much as you can in one week.
  • get caught up with Tachyon People and the class.

September:

  • edit The Vacation Game

October:

  • snowflake a story for NaNoWriMo

November:

  • NaNoWriMo!

December:

  • edit Double Cross

This will most likely not happen in exactly this way, but writing a schedule feels freeing. I don’t have to worry about when my novels are going to get edited anymore.

Oh, the glamor!

I never knew Piers Anthony worked eight hours a day and twelve on Sundays. That exceeds my butt-in-chair and typing stamina.

I told my spouse this and the response was, “Too bad his stuff isn’t any good.”

Well, the guy’s selling books hand over fist, so someone must like his stuff. The last time I read any of his books was back in college, and I liked them then.

This is a big step, starting a blog under my writing name. Here goes!

What I’d like to do is post about projects, things I’ve learned, etc.  Just a seed to a larger website, should one become needed (like if I’m ever published).

I hope you like it here.  Have fun.