Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Desperation, inspiration

I've struggled with the Mars outline.  I've already mentioned that.  I think I'm on the right track now, but I still have lots of hammering away at it before I'll know for certain.  I haven't done squat for the last week or so due to the holidays, but hopefully I can get back on track soon.

The problem is that, aside from not having a ready outline, the struggle eats away at my confidence.  It provokes a sense of desperation, as if I must finish it soon or the whole thing will slip between my fingers and shatter on the floor.

On the other hand, inspiration can hit when you least expect it.  Though Mars has proved elusive, the idea for my next series has come crashing into my consciousness like a tsunami.  I've already sketched out a setting, characters, and plot points for nine books.  Yes, a nine-book series.  Ambitious, I know.  And meaningless until I write full outlines.  My hard drive is full of undeveloped ideas that may never see the light of day.

Nevertheless, it's nice to know that my creative juices can blank out in one area and overcompensate in another.

Sunday, December 20, 2015

When your outline just ain't right...

...you make a new one.

That's what I'm doing with Mars.  I wasn't happy with the story as planned out, so I'm totally re-vamping the thing.  That's the great thing about outlining, though--you can go in a completely different direction before committing to putting a lot of words on the page.

Better to have a bad outline than a bad book.

I've also started making notes for my next series.  I had thought about doing a fantasy series, but it looks like that won't happen yet.  The next one, like the Free Space trilogy, will also be science fiction.

Unlike Free Space, though, it won't be hard SF.  And it will have a metaphysical/supernatural component.

Of course, all plans are subject to change at any time.  ;)

Thursday, December 17, 2015

First draft is done

Mercury is now ready for revision.  It currently stands at 56,088 words.

It took about two months, which isn't great, but understandable given the season.  This time of year is simply too full of distractions.  I can't write at the same pace that I can in June.

But I got it done, and that's what counts.

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Progress Report

I'm at about 51k words in Mercury and nearing the end.  I should have the first draft wrapped up in a few days.  I expect the final draft to be longer, of course.  I tend to add more during revision than I subtract.  During first drafts, my mind tends to race through the story faster than I can type, and things just get left out.  So I have to go back and connect the dots.

I've also started working on the blurbs for the trilogy.  I've got some pretty good ones, I think, for Venus and Mercury.  I'll wait until the first draft of Mars is done before I write a blurb for that one.  After all, I'm still outlining it, so I don't really know what the story's about yet.

I've been experimenting with a lot of different cover designs, and I think I've finally settled on one.  I just have to make a final decision on the typography and a few minor details.

So that's where I'm at.  It's gradually coming together.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Some days...

...are better than others.

I had a good day yesterday.  I wrote somewhere in the neighborhood of 2000 words.

Today, I'm struggling.  I've written maybe 200 words. 

I think it's because I added in a scene that's not in my outline.  The result is that I don't know how to get the story from point A to point C.  There's a point B to be found, but I haven't nailed it down yet.

That "point A" scene is pretty cool, though.  :D

I'm definitely getting tired of the story.  I'm close to being done with the first draft--I've got just over 48k words in, and only a few scenes left to go.  Once it's done, I can go back and add in all the stuff from my notes.  (I don't like going back and making structural changes until after the first draft's done.)

My goal is to have the trilogy up some time next fall.  I may finish by next summer, but I think fall's a better time to publish, so I'll postpone it until then.  That's the plan for the time being.

In the meantime, here's a little post-apocalyptic awesomeness from The Sword:

Sunday, December 6, 2015

What am I writing...

It's been several days since I've had a chance to work on Mercury.  It's the season, you know.  All sorts of Christmas-related stuff going on.  Plus I've got other things to do.  Anyway, the last time I wrote anything was Wednesday.  I think.

So I opened the file today to get back into it.  I scrolled to the bottom and skimmed the last paragraph to see where I left off.  The first phrase that caught my eye was "They charged into the rape mob..."


It's really not as ridiculous as it sounds when read in context.  At least, that's my hope.  *fingers crossed*