Posts Tagged ‘serialization’

I have learned through experience that when I struggle with a story as much as I have been struggling with BECOME lately, it means there’s something wrong.


It’s time to take a step back and try to figure out what and how to fix it.

And yesterday I might have come up with an answer. Maybe. Not sure yet.

I’ve always known that the structure of BECOME was going to be odd.

I really feel I need to include the background of the brothers’ relationship as adolescents. In the latest iteration, I’ve tried to do that through flashbacks, but that just interrupts the flow of the story and forces the early part of the brothers’ story to be very episodic–only the most important events can be included that way.

Then, of course, there are some important events in the protagonists early manhood. In part, because of the weight of those extensive flashbacks, I’ve been forced to keep those somewhat episodic, too. Because it’s already taken way too long to get to the inciting incident.

And, even then, there’s still going to have to be a major skip in the story because there are a couple of important characters who haven’t even been born yet. (That part, at least, has the possibility of being somewhat fluid. I could make some changes in who those characters are, though I’m not sure I want to. I’ve intended more to use that as a cut-off between the first and second books of the series–which, unfortunately, tends to end book one on something of a cliffhanger.)

The result of all of this is that I’m not happy with the story as it’s developed so far. And if I’m not happy with it, I can’t expect anyone else to be either. So, then, the question is what to do about it.

I think, though I haven’t made a final decision yet, that one answer might be to break it up. For example, I might just reconstruct the brothers’ early story–I have a lot more written than I’ve been able to include in those flashbacks–and publish that in novella form. Maybe certain other parts of the early story, too–in a separate novella. Then start this first part of the main story line much closer to that inciting incident and move forward.

I’ve got to think about this some more before I jump in. It’s an unconventional way to publish an epic fantasy. It’s not too unusual to publish prequels, but they’re usually published after the series is complete, not before. On the other hand, that’s one of the advantages of indie publishing–it allows me to try unconventional things when I think it’s the right way to handle the story. And I can always bundle the novellas together. Even include then with that first book.

Well, we’ll see.


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And it feels good. Ever since my Weird Oz Story petered out on me, my productivity has been less than usual. Oh, I’ve kept on working, but I haven’t accomplished as much as I wanted to.

The decision to concentrate on one thing at a time (think of that) has helped. I’m making real progress on my rewrite of THE SHAMAN’S CURSE, adding depth and conflicts and all the things that will ultimately make the story even better. (Also longer, but I’m not going to worry about that.)

I also have some ideas on how to break up the log jam on Weird Oz, but I won’t tackle that until after the first of the year–probably not until after the conclusion of Pitch Wars. I’m going to have to go back and restart the story, but it won’t be the first time that’s happened.

Meantime, ‘ve put up another new chapter of BLOOD IS THICKER on wattpad, where you can read it for free.

Also, there’s only about another month to buy the Chimeria Omnibus,


containing both BLOOD WILL TELL and BLOOD IS THICKER, for the price of either book alone. In mid-January, the price for the Omnibus will go up.

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And it’s not just because of the season–although that’s part of it.

This post is a day late because life–and my house–got a little crazy on me yesterday. Oddly, most things seem to have returned to normal today. No better explanation so far than poltergeists. And, really, the only ghosts in this house should be friendly ones. Oh well.

I’m also feeling a little scattered–or maybe schizophrenic–because I’m trying to revise three different novels at the same time! I’m just waiting for the time I catch myself typing the name of a character from DREAMER’S ROSE into either THE SHAMAN’S CURSE or MAGIC AND POWER.

I may just have to decide to work on only one thing at a time. Think of that. If so, I’ll probably finish this pass through THE SHAMAN’S CURSE first.

My day was brightened by this very nice review of BLOOD IS THICKER this morning.

Blood Is Thicker Cover

Speaking of BLOOD IS THICKER, there’s a new chapter available on wattpad, too.

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Another reason for using orphan heroes, especially in middle grade or young adult fiction, occurred to me. Sometimes it means the hero has nothing to lose. This is certainly true for Harry Potter. Did anyone seriously doubt that Harry would go with Hagrid to Hogwarts rather than stay with the Dursleys? What did he have to stay for?

But isn’t it more interesting when the hero, like Frodo, has a real choice to make? When they are giving something up to follow the call to adventure?

Of course, there’s still another reason for using an orphan, abused, or misunderstood character–when it’s central to the plot. For example, I mentioned Menolly from Anne McCaffrey’s Dragon Song series in my last post. If Menolly hadn’t been misunderstood and neglected, she would never have been in that cave to find and impress the fire lizards and the story wouldn’t have been even vaguely the same.

Harry Potter, too. If Voldemort hadn’t killed Harry’s parents and failed to kill Harry, then Harry would not have been the chosen one who could ultimately kill Voldemort.

That, of course, is a horse of a different color. So, I guess the lesson is, if you’re going to use an orphan hero, don’t just use it as a starting point. Make it important to the story.


For another month or so, the omnibus edition containing both BLOOD WILL TELL and BLOOD IS THICKER is the same price as either one alone.

Also, another chapter of BLOOD IS THICKER is now available free on wattpad.


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I don’t know about other writers, but my output definitely slows down a bit around this time of year. There are too many other things that need to get done, too. (To all my writer friends doing National Novel Writing Month right now, trying to write 50,000 words in the month of November, more power to you.)

This year, Thanksgiving will be at my house for the first time in almost 15 years. Eep. It’s not that I can’t handle the cooking. I cook a turkey every year anyway. And I don’t have to do all of it this year. I’m only responsible for the pies (as always), turkey, cranberry sauce, sweet potatoes, and rolls (with help from Pilsbury).

But there’s a lot I need to do before then. I mean, despite my somewhat lackadaisical attitude toward housekeeping, the place has to look at least minimally picked up, dusted, etc. I’m going to have to find another chair or two somewhere, too.

Meanwhile, I’m working on revisions to three different novels, as the mood strikes me. The rewrite of THE SHAMAN’S CURSE needs a second look-through to work out a few structural issues (like losing the main conflict for several chapters). The rewrite of DREAMER’S ROSE needs some new scenes to replace places where I used telling in the original. And, of course, the revisions to MAGIC AND POWER that I outlined in my last post.

Oh, and Christmas is less than a month after Thanksgiving.

Yeah. No pressure.

Blood Is Thicker Cover

Meanwhile, a new chapter of BLOOD IS THICKER is available free on wattpad. And don’t forget there are still a few stops on my blog tour tomorrow.

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Well, my blog tour arranged by Bewitching Book Tours, starts tomorrow.

Blood Will Tell & Blood is Thicker Button 300 x 225

Here’s the schedule:

November 18 Spotlight and review

Penny For Them…



November 18 Spotlight

Book Reviews by Xunaira J.



November 18 Spotlight

AC James



November 19 Spotlight and review

Diaries of 2 Thick Chicks



November 19 Guest blog 

Mythical Books


Guest Post: The Journey or the ending


November 19 review

Romance with Flavor



November 20 Interview

The Simple Things in life



November 20 Interview

Musings and Ramblings   



November 21 Spotlight and review

Fang Freakin’ Tastic Reviews



November 21 review

trips down imagination road 




November 21 review

Corey’s Book Reviews     



November 22 Guest blog: Character Profiles

Books, Books The Magical Fruit



November 22 review

Crazy Four Books



November 25 Spotlight

My Tangled Skeins Book Reviews



November 25 Spotlight and review

Ramblings of a Book Lunatic



November 25 review

happy tails and tales 


This is my first blog tour. It looks like it’s going to be a busy week.

Also, there will shortly be another new chapter of BLOOD IS THICKER available on wattpad. (Forgot to do it last night. Sorry.)

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Well, sort of, anyway.

It’s a strange fact of writing–for me–that ideas only really come to me while I’m writing. That’s probably one reason that outlining doesn’t work well for me. And it works a lot better when I’m writing something “new” than when I’m revising. However, rewriting something old seems to be close enough to writing new material, because I’m getting lots of new ideas for this story, DREAMER’S ROSE.

The final product is going to start much like the previous version. Somewhere around chapter ten, however, it’s going to diverge and never look back. Even the antagonist is going to change. It’s a whole new story. (Which is a good thing. Trust me. There’s a reason why the original version has been buried on my hard drive. I love the premise, but the first attempt just wasn’t working.)

I’m thinking now that I’ll need four point-of-view characters (including the antagonist). The three protagonists will be part of–well, not exactly a love triangle, but something similar to one. (It’s not a true triangle because one choice, while perhaps tempting, is patently impossible. The readers will know that, even if the characters don’t–at first.)

This is hopeful for WEIRD OZ, too. DREAMER’S ROSE just needed to marinate a little longer before the real story revealed itself. Maybe that’s all WEIRD OZ needs, too. 

At any rate, I’m having fun with this one right now. There’s so much I love about this new version.

Blood Is Thicker Cover

Also, a new chapter of BLOOD IS THICKER is now available on wattpad.

The blog tour starts in just over a week. Stay tuned.

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