Posts Tagged ‘e-publishing’

Yes. I finally finished that chapter of MAGE STORM that has been dogging me for so long.

Mage Storm

And now I can turn my attention back to the final revisions and the polishing edit for BECOME: TO RIDE THE STORM.


I expect to have this one up for pre-order possibly sometime in November. I’ll know better after I really assess the revisions. Most are minor, but there are one or two that will need deeper thought–and maybe more work. And publish it either the last week in December or the first week in January.

That timing isn’t random. First, a new book just won’t get a lot of attention between Thanksgiving and Christmas. People are busy with other things. But at least some readers will probably get gift cards or new e-readers for Christmas. Also, I’ll have those two weeks off, so I can spend more time than I’m usually able to managing the new release.

And, as soon as the polishing edit is done, it’ll be back to work on MAGE STORM. Hopefully, with a better idea of why I was feeling so stuck before, so I can make better progress. After all, it’s a rewrite. I know how the story goes.

That is, unless one of those characters who didn’t have a point of view before but do now was trying to pull me off in a different direction and that’s why I was so stuck. Hmm. Pesky characters.

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Since I was a day late earlier in the week, I suppose I should make up for it by posting a day early.

It’s time to decide on my writing goals for 2017.

  1. Publish BECOME: TO CATCH THE LIGHTNING.becomeblue This means:
    • Finish the first draft.
    • Figure out how many books there actually are in this series and where the break points are.
    • Let it rest for about a month.
    • Run through a couple of revisions.
    • Get it critiqued.
    • Another round of revisions.
    • Polishing edit.
    • Format for publication.
  2. That first goal may be close to enough. But I also want to get restarted on the rewrite of MAGE STORM. (No cover, yet, though I have a couple of  ideas.)
  3. I doubt very much that there’ll be a lot of writing time left over. But that doesn’t mean I won’t be jotting down ideas on some of the other stories I have simmering on the back burners.
    • MAGIC AND POWER: Another story in the same world as DAUGHTER OF THE DISGRACED KING, but centering on another set of protagonists. (MAGIC AND POWER might end up being the series title.)???????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????
    • A couple of fairy-tale retellings buzzing around the back of my mind. One of them might end up in the MAGIC AND POWER world.
    • My weird Oz story is always out there. I actually wrote about ten chapters of it, but it wasn’t working. Partly because I’d left my protagonist completely alone for too long. I need to figure out how to give her an unhelpful, but talkative sidekick that will fit in this more dangerous version of Oz.
    • The prequels to the DUAL MAGICS series, though I don’t think I’m quite ready to go back to that world yet.Dual Magics 1-3 Boxed Set
    • Someday, I’m going to have to go back and write the third book in the Chimeria series. That is a fun world to play in.Chimeria Box 2
  4. Get better at marketing. The only way that’s going to happen is if I make a plan and devote some attention to it at least every month, not just around book launches. It’s just not nearly as much fun as writing. But it has to be done.


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Time to see how I did against the goals I set for myself last year. (Results are in bold italics.)

  1. WAR OF MAGIC: Complete first draft, revisions, get critiques, revise again, polish, and publish. Done.warmagicprintcover
  2. Revise the already-published “Becoming Lioness” and publish the new edition. Pull together the tie-in short stories, “Hunter and Huntress” and “The Seeker”. Put them through the same revision process. Nope. Becoming Lioness Cover 2
  3. Publish a boxed set of the DUAL MAGICS series. Done, though I only included the first three books and one short story, “Modgud Gold”.Dual Magics 1-3 Boxed Set
  4. MAGE STORM: Rewrite this as an epic fantasy. Same revision process as above. Try to publish in 2016 or early 2017. MAGE STORM ended up being pushed back in favor of BECOME.
  5. BECOME: TO CATCH THE LIGHTNING: Get a first draft done. Still working on the first draft.becomeblue
  6. Planning, world-building, etc. for some of the other stories on my back burner: Some planning, but no other progress.
    1. Another story in the same world as DAUGHTER OF THE DISGRACED KING.
    2. A set of fairy-tale retellings I’ve been playing with.
    3. The prequels to the DUAL MAGICS series that explain how the world got that way.
    4. The sequels to MAGE STORM.
    5. My Weird Oz story.
    6. The last novel in the Chimeria series.
  7. I would dearly love to be able to get to a writers’ conference somewhere in there, but that will depend on both time and finances. Nope.

In summary, the most important goal was met. But it took longer than I’d hoped and basically pushed all the other goals back a bit. Still progress. I’ll take it.


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I was making good progress with my writing on BECOME this morning.


And then, after I finished a scene, I paused to go do the grocery shopping–and got a flat tire.

Fortunately, I have hazard insurance (they have a different name for it) on those tires, so America’s Tire Company replaced it, rotated the tires, and checked the air in all of them. And all it cost me was $17.25 for the same insurance on the new tire.

That’s a huge relief.

Well, $17.25 and the time. Which wasn’t really very long, but . . . well, you know how a change in schedule like that can sort of cascade. And then I was tired.

I’m still going to get back into that chapter. Soon.

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Starting yesterday, I have seventeen straight days off. I hope to get a lot of writing on BECOME done in that time.


Though, of course, there will be a few distractions along the way, too.

I don’t expect anything like a chapter a day. Which is good, because I’m not on that pace so far.

Today is also a sad anniversary. Fifteen years ago today was the day my first Cardigan Welsh corgi, Aliza (Tricreeks Simply Irresistible, NJP, CGC) arrived in my life.

My first view of Aliza

The first time I saw Aliza

She was fifteen months old when she came to me and four months shy of sixteen years old when I lost her last spring. Miss you, sweetest girl.


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I’ve said before that I’m a modified discovery writer (or pantser). I generally know the broad outline of a story when I start writing, but not the details. Just the high–or low–points. And sometimes not all of those. In effect, I’m telling myself the story as I write the first draft.

In some ways, that’s more true than usual with BECOME.


Generally, I have a good feel at least for the length of the story. I knew that DUAL MAGICS would take four books to tell, for example, all roughly the same length.

Dual Magics 1-3 Boxed SetI still don’t have a feel for how long this story will be. Not just the number of books, but the length of the books. It still could turn out to be one really long book. Or two or three relatively short books. Or . . . ?

Right now it’s looking like the first stopping point I had in mind will leave the story . . . well, not novella-length, but not really full length, either. Especially for an epic fantasy.

I guess I’ll just have to keep writing and find out.


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It feels good to be making progress on BECOME again!


Especially as I’m at one of those delicate points in the story.

So far this weekend, I’ve written one chapter, albeit a short one, and roughed in the dialog for the next. So, things are going well on that front.

As for the delicate part, this is a point in the story where I have to make a romance bloom–in a very short space, because that’s not really what the story is about, though it has a pivotal role in some of the things that will come next. Not a case where I can spend chapters letting these characters come together slowly–while other stuff happens, of course. So that will be a little bit of a trick to pull off.

Fortunately, this is the first draft. I need to keep reminding myself that I don’t have to get it exactly right the first time.

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For this week and next, my work schedule has changed. And it’s messing with my writing time. Or, at least, I’m finding it harder to whip my muse into action during the time I have available now. Maddening, just as I developed a really good idea of how the next few chapters need to go. At least I’ve made notes.

On the other hand, after next week, I’ll have two weeks off. So that should help me recover and get back to some real work on BECOME.


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A couple of weeks ago I posted about how one of the things my current work-in-process, BECOME


would focus on was the relationship between brothers.

The story isn’t a direct retelling of the Hercules legend. There won’t be twelve labors, as just one example. And I’ve turned other things on their heads, making my hero the son of the earth goddes, not a sky god (like Zeus). But I have given him a mortal near-twin brother, just like Iphicles was to Hercules.

The Greek legend doesn’t really address this relationship, but a large part of my story–especially early on–revolves around the relationship between these two half-brothers and a bit of understandable fraternal jealousy.

But I don’t want to make the near-twin really the antagonist–or at least, not really the bad guy. And this has been a small part of what’s been inhibiting my writing lately. Well, inspiration struck this week. I’d already supplied the near-twin with a younger full brother, who is just perfect for the part. All it took was to see him that way. And the pieces for the next several chapters all just fell into place. He’ll be the whisperer that stirs things up. And . . . a little more.


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Somehow, I always set myself up for this. A long weekend comes along and I start thinking about all the writing I’ll get done. Well, of course, it never works out quite like I’d planned. Especially this time of year.

Still, I’ve accomplished quite a lot. And had a nice time with family, too. So I’m going to be happy with that.  And try to remember to adjust my expectations next time. (Though don’t hold your breath on that one.)

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