SF


I never knew publishing a book was so much work. Between that and the day job (yeah, it’s at home but it pays the bills) this blog has to be feeling neglected.

But I have had a few nights to get some writing in, which is always good.

I’m mulling over a title. How does Ghosts of the Past sound? It sums up the book pretty well but I’m worried it sounds like a paranormal. What do you think?

 

Advertisements

Some people call this the “log line” or some other such thing, but it’s basically one sentence which tells what you book is about. I think I called the “one sentence blurb” somewhere else.

For example, the story of The Hobbit might read:

A hobbit is persuaded by a wizard to accompany eleven dwarves in order to break into their former home, which is currently occupied by a dragon.

Or something like that.

So what’s my upcoming wild ride? Here’s what I’ve come up with so far:

A cattle rancher returns home to find his lover dying and must renegotiate his relationship with his soulmate: her husband.

I’m writing a more mundane novel for NaNoWriMo (book #2 in my series), but once I’m done with that this one is next on the queue.

Nice article on The Rise and Fall of the Techno-Thriller on this month’s Internet Review of Science Fiction.

While I don’t want to jinx this, I have been stuck, now I am less so.

The problem? Not letting the character be who she is.

She’s a rough woman, a gangsta’s moll, a drifter who cheerfully “cut a few people” to get out of a rioting city. Yet I had her acting nice to a girl who pissed her way off.

I couldn’t figure out why my story stuck in mud until I backed up and really looked at the scene.

(got that tip from lesson 13 of the Think Sideways class, btw)

Got the girl married off, things have settled a bit, and I’ve finally figured this story from the Think Sideways class well enough to go to lesson 9, and begin writing.

Heh.

I thought I knew how to write scenes, but I’m writing a lot better just from this one lesson than I ever did.  The lesson is forcing me to really LOOK at the scene, figure it out in its entirety, put in the detail, and make it MATTER, before I go to the next one.  For someone like me who normally breezes through 2k a day without breaking a sweat it’s a bit slow, but I find that the scenes are much better ones. I can definitely see progress here.

This story is sort of untitled, in the sense that the working title wouldn’t make much sense if you weren’t reading the story, and is a bit silly to boot, so I’ll just leave it Untitled for now. It’s a post-apocalyptic story in the sense that a lot of stuff happened and things are more or less stable, but it’s a whole different world than we’re used to.

Here’s the Sentence:

A penniless drifter in a drowned Los Angeles, intrigued first by a charming yachtsman and later by the secrets he holds, is enticed into a web of lies that extends beyond Earth.

We’ll see how it goes.

What are you working on these days?

There has been a huge discussion over on LiveJournal about race and cultural appropriation, and one thing I’ve noticed is people saying, “Well, if I just wrote about [what they are], then it would be boring!”

Which made me laugh, because none of the things they put in the brackets sounded boring at all … unless they wrote mainstream, which puts me to sleep.

Seems to me that writing about what you know about, with a bit of tweaking to make it not exactly you, might be just what you need.

Take Tobias Buckell, for example. He grew up in the Caribbean. If he had said, “I can’t write about what I know, that would be boring!” then his whole damn freaking awesome series wouldn’t have come about.

Now I know what you’re thinking: the Caribbean is WAY cooler than, say, Hoboken or Seattle or Dallas. But no, it isn’t. Because if you honestly write what those places and people are like, someone from somewhere else is going to find that interesting.

And Tobias didn’t just write about Caribbean people. He wrote about Caribbean people in SPACE, with aliens and immortals and interstellar wars and blowing shit up.

If he had written it mainstream … well you see where I’m going here.

(apologies to mainstream writers … it’s just not my thing)

I say this as I prepare a story set in the Los Angeles basin. Just so happens it’s in the future. Most of the LA basin is underwater due to global warming, gangs run the place, and our heroine is wheedled into working for a guy obsessed with finding his way off Earth.

But it’s LA, I grew up around there, and I’ve driven that damn basin so many times I could practically do it blindfolded. That doesn’t mean someone might not be interested in what it might be like, a hundred or so years from now. Especially if it involves blowing things up. 🙂

So the adage to write what you know still seems right on.

I just started lesson five on the How to Think Sideways class (lesson six is up but I’ve been slow). This lesson … mind-blowing. If you can imagine tapping into your subconscious for all the things that motivate you, then putting THAT into your writing on a conscious level … it’s incredible.

I have two great ideas for stories from lesson 4, but I’m going with the SF one (any surprise?) because I can do a better job on this without a ton of research — I’ll need some (know someone who curses in Chinese?) but it’s set in Los Angeles and that’s a place I already know.

Click the box at the top of the sidebar on the right there for more information on the course, or you’re welcome to ask about it. I’ve gotten my money’s worth already and I still have the rest of the year to go.

Next Page »