Archive for March, 2014

A Lesson Learned

Posted: March 24, 2014 in On Writing

I tend to be one of those people who writes something, maybe spends a small amount of time editing, sends it to some friends, and promptly moves on to the next thing.

That’s a great thing… if all you ever want is for your friends to read you. I’m starting to move past that though, have been submitting to more places, looking for more places to get paid for my writing, and in general working hard to turn in my amateur card.

I’m writing more, and more consistently. Not every day, to be sure, but writing all the same. I’m averaging about one short a week, and, this the good thing, expanding my audience. I’m not in a position to win any awards to be sure and definitely not ready to quit looking for  day job so I can focus on writing all of the time, but it’s moving along the continuum from “I write occassionally” to “I am a writer.”

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So I came in second for the synopsis contest over at Writer’s Carnival. What this means, in essence, is that I’ve received a huge kick in the ass to get Continuity out the door, something I’ve talked about for years and haven’t moved on.

It also means putting Milieux on hold, albeit temporarily to focus on this.

The big irony for me is that the person who won is someone I recommended the site to and got month trial for. Man, I shoulda paid more attention when they told me about the danger of good deeds.

I have always felt writing, and sharing what you  write, is one of the more intimate, challenging, self-esteem threatening things you can do. By publishing stories, even in such a limited market as this, I am opening myself up to critique, to a sense of “not-good-enough.”

This weekend at Writer’s Carnival, they are hosting a Post-a-Palooza for their one year anniversary. The site will be swarming with writers, all of with different levels of ability, different backgrounds, and different expectations of what they want to accomplish with their writing.

So I’ve decided to take a risk and put excerpts from my first novel, CONTINUITY, on the site. You have to be a member to read it (sorry), but joining is free. Below is the synopsis I wrote of it for one of their contests. (more…)

On the Side of the Angels

Posted: March 20, 2014 in Fiction, horror

This week’s Chuck Wendig challenge. I went with something akin to HellPunk, though with definitely a different spin than maybe I was anticipating. I could see expanding this out a bit. Oh, and yes, fair warning: contains strong language, disturbing scenes of a violent nature, me playing fast and loose with Catholic imagery, and a devil. Not THE Devil to be sure, though I’m sure he’s lurking somewhere back there, but a devil, surely. (more…)

Battle of the Bands

Posted: March 19, 2014 in Uncategorized

This was a challenge at the writerscarnival.ca site. Write a short story using the words: baby, tissue, and metal. This is what I came up with.  (more…)

Old Debts

Posted: March 13, 2014 in Fiction, horror
Tags: , , ,

This week’s Chuck Wendig challenge. It’s actually shorter than the word limit accounted for. For my challenge, I needed to incorporate a faceless corpse and an infernal pact. Jeb Johnson previously appeared in my short story Deal with a Devil, which was a decidedly Weird West kind of tale. This is a bit different from that, but I liked the character enough to bring him back. Deal with a Devil can be found in the outstanding anthology Midnight Abyss.

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So one of the things I am doing as part of the Writer’s Carnival team is writing blog posts and leading group discussions. These are short reads, though it starts to feel very meta. Then again, writing about writing often does.

The idea behind the group discussion posts is to get members engaged, to highlight the social aspect of the site. Only, since it is a writing site, the focus is less on cats and pictures of food or who’s dating whom and more on you know, writing.

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Word Metrics for March

Posted: March 4, 2014 in Uncategorized

So over on the sideboard there (on the left, no, your other left), I’ve added a word count and goal for the current major project.

Milieux is a novel concept I came up with three years ago (give or take) that I’m finally picking back up after a too long hiatus. To be fair, I’ve written quite a few other pieces in the interim, but this is the current big piece (aside from the novel currently languishing in editorial Hell). It has politics, duels, nobility, and the Fair Folk. It’s closer to low fantasy than high, with firm elements of sword and sorcery, and definitely more Lankhmar than Hyboria.

The word count maximum is somewhat arbitrary to be sure, but a solid goal is helpful with these things I find. If I go over, so much the better.

My more specific goal is 1000 words a day (excluding weekends). My long term goal is to get this novel in shape for publication (or at least in shape to be used for queries) sometime this year. Preferably before September. To be sure, this won’t be the only thing I’m working on this year. I’m on the hook with Dark Futures for 2500 words a month for 11 more months. I’ll be completing Chuck Wendig challenges. I’ll be blogging here and for Writer’s Carnival. I’ve got at least one other major side project sitting somewhere on the side burner. So yeah, pretty sure I’ll be busy this year.

Exciting News!

Posted: March 2, 2014 in Publications

My short story, “A Message to Deliver,” is to be included in Dark Futures 1st Annual Anthology. I’ll be joining Doug Langille and Shaun Adams as contributors (among many others), so its a small Midnight Abyss reunion of sorts.  (more…)