Trunk Novels & Research

By my count I blew five weeks and generated ~100k words on a novel I’m regretfully consigning to the metaphorical trunk. And what’s funny is that I’m sure that if this novel was written forty years ago, it’d be on its way to my agent. The difference is research and realism. With a little research […]

Quick Post-Prandial on Manuscript Maintenance

I did some time-and-motion monitoring in terms of getting changes to a manuscript fit from Scrivener to Word and cleaned and ready for The Agent to use. Fine-cleaning two scenes (~2.5k words). That means reading them aloud, copying the pieces to a word file, then reading that to ensure it’s clean: 75 minutes. Compiling from […]

A Writer’s Primer on Computer Care and Feeding

We’re in the midst of NaNo, and I’m reminded of several instances where the moan of “I just lost everything!” was heard. I’ve talked with writers who’ve lost entire manuscripts. Others that lost hours or days of work due to various issues. So, quick technical primer. Work stably. Make sure your computer works, that the […]

WWI: A Century’s Past / Veterans Day

World War I was hideously expensive and wasteful in terms of talent. A generation of young people, of talent, of possibility–gone. The hope and potential of growing their lives and cultures mowed down, gassed, and slaughtered. And that lost of hope and potential kept the survivors from the social buoying that youth inevitably bring to […]

POVs and Trunking

I’ve been wrestling with getting my next novel started before getting a full-time, paying gig. And score is trunk novels: 5, Shlomi manuscripts: 0. It kept coming across lifeless, a narration of facts and events that even extensive external and internal dialog didn’t help. I’m a pantser, so I wasn’t worried about “where the book […]

Hopes, Dashed

I’m already several thousand words into my latest, but had to stop for some research. More research. Interviewing dancers research. (Okay, my daughter, but still…) And then I remembered Jeanne and Spider Robinson’s book “Stardance.” Well, I actually remember the original novella. It was a bit odd delving that far back into SF writings. Winced […]

An Author Moment

Just finished hand edits of Last Run, a monster novel (originally 185k or closing on 800 pages). I’ll have a much lower word count when I’m done, if for no other reason than most post-apoc manuscripts are best salable when they’re under 120k. Or so I’m told. This month, at least. I find the act […]

Baby Novelist Issues: Writing Myself Into a Knot

I’m 116,000 words into a SF novel. It’s got great tech, interesting characters, action and thrills… and no motivation for bad guy actions. Well, it did, when I started. But the pitfall of pantsing is getting pulled off course, one degree at at time. (And when writing about matters aeronautical, there’s three dimensions to those degrees. […]

A Progress Tool

Recently I posted a graphic showing words per day. (I’ve used it before: you can see posts here and here.) It’s part of my musings about writing velocity and general “feeling like an author.” I’ll tee up a few posts on that in the future, but for now I wanted to provide a Google Sheets document, called […]