15/5/17

Today has been an Assembly of Planets day. This morning before work, and then during my lunch break, I worked on an outline for an Assembly story and I’ve done a little work on developing one of the alien races that’ll be in this universe. Then this evening I started adding Owen’s notes into The Space Watch. I’ve done one chapter so far and I’m finding I’m doing a more thorough job then I thought I was going to. When I started I thought I’d just be going through and making Owen’s changes but I’ve found I’m doing a full edit. I’m tweaking sentences, adjusting details, praying I’m getting the grammar right, and just going in deeper than I thought I was going to. This will add time, but if it needs doing then I’m going to do it as I’m working through it. I am also making notes of key details for the universe Bible as I go.

Tomorrow, I’m off to see Alien:Covenant, so I don’t think I’ll be doing much editing but I will continue working on getting this outline done. 

21/4/17

No words today, in fact I deleted 7200 words from the fanfic piece. I am repeating to myself ‘it makes it stronger, it makes it stronger, it makes it stronger’ and it does. I’ve cannibalised dodgy scenes and made them better and hopefully it’s made the story work so much better.

I’ve done a few notes for a couple of anthologies I’m planning to submit to. I’ve also done some work on the outline for a future story as well, and I’ve had a great world building detail for an alien species for mine and Owen’s sprawling universe we’re working on.

I’m wrapping for the night. I’m beat, it’s been a busy day at work and I’ve half chilled out this evening and half done some editing. I’m not being as productive as I’d like but I feel I’m picking up the pace a little.

19th April 2017

I’ve only written about 500 words today, half on the fanfic piece and half on the short story I’ve been working on.

I was working on the fanfic tonight, while watching a bit of TV, but it was more editing than writing. I added a few words at the end of the scene I’d been rewriting and the next one was more editing than writing.  This is something that I’m hoping outlying will help me with. I seem to have to go back and do a lot of gap filling with my writing and that’s got to add to the time it takes me to get a story done. I know I can write pretty fast (three NaNoWriMo victories in the last three years), but I’ve got to learn to write a coherent first draft.

I’ve got a couple of short story anthologies I’m going to try and submit to, so I’m going to get this short story wrapped up and then focus on those anthologies and get the stories written. I am brainstorming and scribbling down ideas for them but I want to make some time to focus on them properly in the next week or so and give them the proper attention they require and deserve.

It’s been a busy day at work, and a slower but busy evening with writing. I’m feeling beat, but I’m feeling energised and enthusiastic. 

(I’ve not proof-read this, so please excuse any typos). 

Good Morning, Good Sunday! 16/4/17

Good morning! Well, it’s another Sunday morning, the dog is snoring at my feet, and the cat is nowhere to be seen (probably stretched out on a bed somewhere). I can hear the birds singing in the garden but that is all the sound I can hear right now. I live in a rural area and this time of the morning on a Sunday is quite often very peaceful (as I said that a car went pelting up the road at a silly speed). Anyway, this last week has felt somewhat slow, writing wise. I’ve not written a huge amount of words but I have written everyday and have averaged about 300 words a day (I’m not including yesterdays words in that). So I’m pretty chuffed with that. It’s felt like an odd week where I haven’t got much work done, but I was quite pleased when I saw that I’d done that much this week.

This last week has seemed to have gone by in a flash, but aside from Wednesday when I had a Write-In, I’ve not had an especially busy one outside of the day job. That said though, I only really had Monday and Tuesday night’s to write. I did do a few words at the Write-In, but not many. My brother and his family have just moved house, so on Thursday night I helped him move a lovely sofa they have, which wasn’t easy but we got it out the old house and into the new one. That took a bit of doing. And then on Friday we moved the bulk of his furniture. So Thursday and Friday I didn’t get a lot written, but I wasn’t expecting to because of helping my brother out. Last night I just flaked out, but I did write 600+ words in the morning before I went to work.

This week I’ve got today to get some work done, and tomorrow is a bonus day. As it’s Easter Monday we get a Bank Holiday (same with Good Friday), so no day job. I’d like to have put a big dent into my FanFic piece. I’ve barely touched that this week and would like to make some serious progress with it. ┬áThe majority of the work I’ve done this week has been on the short story I’ve been playing with. It’s over 3000 words now and I like a lot of it, although I’m not sure about how strong it is. It’s a story in Owen and my Assembly universe and at worst it’s a great character piece which is letting me flesh out a character we’ve got plans for in the future, and at best something we’ll put out one day, probably in a collection.

I am thinking through to NaNoWriMo a little. I know November is a long way off but it’ll be with us sooner than we know, and I’m seriously considering writing the zombie piece I’ve just done the primary outline for. I’m thinking of this story because I always assume I’m going to be able to do more than I can during a year. It’s about seven months till November and I’m not sure we’ll be able to get The Space Watch locked down by then, I’m also going to try and submit to some anthologies this year so I’d like a little time to be writing for them as well. I’ve also got one Assembly story I’m working on the outline for, and I’d like to get another couple of outlines done for next year. I’m also thinking like this as a way to start planning what I’m writing. I’ve tried to do that a couple of times but it doesn’t play out like that. Partly because I wasn’t outlining at all, or anywhere close to the depth of outline that I need to have. So, if I decide to do this zombie story for NaNo this year then I know I’ve got over six months to spend more time on the outline, I don’t think I need that amount of time but I’ll know what I’m doing and what time frames I’ve got to work with.

Having that amount of time will also give me time to work on any submission calls I come across, as well as some short stories I want to work on in addition to outlining and planning future pieces.

I’d love to be smashing out a thousand words a day and writing where the wind takes me, but I’ve been doing that for many years and it’s not working for me. I’m hoping this steadier, more prepared, approach will prove fruitful.

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Snoring like a steam train!

April 4th 2017

A much less productive day, today.

I managed to finish off the basics of the character details on the zombie story I’m outlining. It may seem a simple thing but each character now has a name and a fair few details about who they are and what their backgrounds are. I’ve just now figured out the next stage in this outlining and that is to decide what each character’s role in the story will be. I know what three characters will be doing in the story for definite, the rest I need to sit down and figure out how they play their parts.

No words today though. I went to the cinema to see Free Fire (an awesome movie) this evening so that took up a chunk of my time.

I’m going to call it a night now, and read a chapter or two of David Wellington’s Monster Island. 

3rd Of April 2017

I’ve written 1493 words on this Fan Fiction piece tonight, and damn was it fun! This was the first writing I’ve done since the 8th of February. In that time I have done a little outlining and have editing two novella length pieces.

I’m a little surprised at how much easier it was to write those words with the outlining notes I’ve got. Considering how hard I found the outlining process for The Space Watch, I’m feeling optimistic about outlining in the future. I think with The Space Watch some of the problem I had was that it is a story Owen and I have been working on for a long time and maybe I was a little tired of it. Although I do think it’s turned out well. Another problem I think I was having was that I was trying to be too in-dpeth with it. With the outline I’ve been working on for this zombie piece I’ve not tried to do a chapter-by-chapter outline. Instead I’ve just written what happens in the story, and created the characters for the story.

When I was talking to Scott Sigler and A Kovacs a couple of weeks ago I spoke to both, briefly, about outlining and A said that Scott’s early outlines wouldn’t be very long, but his most recent book the outline is around the eighty page mark and much more detailed. I think that was what I was doing wrong; trying to put too much into the outline before I was ready too. It’s like when Owen and I were trying to get Project Apollo written, we weren’t ready to write a story that was as long or complex as that one is. The pieces I’m working on now are less complicated but I think the more that I outline the more complex they’ll get because I’ll be getting more experience with doing them.

In addition to the words I’ve written today I’ve done some work on the zombie story outline, not much but I’ve got some more work done on the characters. Aside from some character details I’m not sure how much more I need to add to this outline, but once I’ve finished these last few character bits I’ll leave it for a little while until I’ve finished work on this Fan Fiction piece. Once I’ve done that I’ll look to start writing the zombie piece.

I am going to try and get back into blogging daily. I find it quite motivating, which I think is good for me.

A Productive Day 2-4-17

I didn’t make a start on a short story like I was hoping but I did manage to knock out all the work I needed to do on the Fan Fiction piece. I created a Scrivener file, sorted the story into chapters and scenes, put my notes into the chapter/scene summary’s and added additional notes as I was going. I then added a few notes for scenes that I need to add to tie it all up, although I think some of that I’ll digress from when I come to writing them, but it’s a place to start.

I was working on this pretty much from mid-morning and didn’t finish till pushing seven this evening. Towards the end of that time I was drifting a little, but it felt really good getting so much done today.

I’m going to crack on this week with getting these edits done and try to get this fan fiction piece wrapped up. I’ll be outlining as well, and hopefully I’ll get on that short story.

I’m going to wrap up now, finish watching this episode of Red Dwarf and then get some reading done.