Sunday 23rd July 2017

Normally I title these posts with a big ‘Good Morning’ but I really don’t feel that energised at the moment. It’s not been a great week. Let’s do the highlights first: War For The Planet Of The Apes. Fantastic movie that really took me on a ride. It was very well done and a good way to wrap up that trilogy. Matt Reaves has directed the last two movies in this trilogy and I am very happy he’s at the helm of The Batman. Another plus point was seeing the new Defenders trailer. I was extremely excited watching this, but those last few seconds had me bouncing up and down! And I think I’ve made as many notes on how to fix my zombie story as I can.

To the bad now; I’ve only written 2536 words today. I have edited as well because the fan fiction piece is part re-writing and adding new scenes but also editing what I’ve written already. That said, I would have liked to have at least hit the 5k for the week. The worst part of the week has been the death of Chester Bennington. I will write a post about this because of the importance of Linkin Park in my life.

This week, I’m going to turn it all around. I’ve been incredibly sloppy with writing for a the last few weeks. I should have made more progress with the Fan Fiction piece, so I’m planning to have it done by the end of the month. This draft at least; it still feels a little like its in a bit of a mess. So once it’s done I’m going to print it off and have a good read through it. Once I’ve finished this draft I’ll be back onto the zombie story and get that sorted out and aim to have it done by the end of August.

My word count for the next week is 5k, which is my unofficial weekly target, but I’m going to go hard today and try to hit half of that number. So I’ll check back in tonight and give an update.

4-6-17

Well, it’s been a productive day. I got cracking with the editing of The Space Watch at about 9ish this morning and cracked out the last few chapters and sent it off to Owen, then realised I forgot to put a detail in, but we’ll get that on the continuity pass through. I am considering this as being done! We’ve literally just got to go through a couple of small details and that’s it. The only thing I’ve got to do after that is go through and make notes of any details in the story that I need to add into a story bible at a later date.

Once I’d got The Space Watch done I cracked on with Beta reader notes on a short story that I’ve written. I even came up with a title for it, which I hope is as good as I think it is.

Then once I’d wrapped that up I started to put together the Scrivener file for my next novel. I’ve got the character profiles done and will start on the breakdown of the chapters and scenes on Tuesday (I’m off to the cinema tomorrow evening). I was hoping to have started writing this new story in the next couple of days but I still need to do some work on the file before I start writing. My primary Beta readers offered to have a look at the outline for me, and they had a good couple of points and liked it overall. This is a story that I’ve had in mind for a few years, have attempted to write it once or twice but have never been able to get more than a few hundred words done. But a good few months ago I had an idea for how I want the tone of the story to be. So I’m hopeful and excited that I’ve got it right this time.

It’ll be nice to be working on some new fiction again.

Good Morning, Saturday -3/6/17

I’m just going to write a quick post this morning. This week has almost flashed by, but I have made a lot of progress with this final edit of The Space Watch. I’ve been getting up early and working on it before work, and had built up a little momentum till this morning. Yesterday I got three or four chapters done which only leaves me with three chapters to go. I had planned to get into it last night but after I’d gone to the hairdressers, done a little shopping, had got home and had a bath and dinner it was pushing nine o’clock. I’ve got friends over tonight for a Mario Kart night so I won’t get anything done tonight. I am planning on smashing through those last few chapters tomorrow though.

I have had some good feedback on a story I’ve written for a anthology I’m planning to submit to next month. I’m going to get those tweaks done tomorrow as well. I had my primary Beta readers look over an outline for a zombie story as well. They gave me some good feedback on that as well, which was handy. I’m seriously considering starting on that in the next few days. I do have another anthology on my radar I’d love to submit to, but I’m still struggling with an idea for it. I might have a look over the guidelines again tomorrow and see if anything shakes loose.

Making Progress

After a very difficult week on a personal level Owen and I made some serious progress with the Space Watch yesterday. We’d batted a few emails to and throw this last week and wasn’t getting anywhere and made more progress in a twenty minute phone call on Friday night than we had done with a dozen emails. We arraigned that Owen would come to my house and we’d go through the draft, which we did. It took us about five hours (with a few interruptions here and there) but we got through it. I read it allowed and made red-pen notes for alterations as and when I saw them and Owen weighed in with plot problems, character details, and world building. All the disagreements we had on the story we’ve resolved and the only heavy lifting that is needed now is to re-write the final scene, and make the final edits. Owen wrote his version of the ending and we’ve realised that if we merge the one I wrote and his then we should have a stronger ending. I’m going to do that today and get it emailed off to him. Then once he’s okay’d it I’ll get it into the text of the story and then go through and make the edits we made yesterday.

The week as a whole has been a loss. As I said at the start of the post it’s been a bad week on a personal level, there has been a couple of good points to the week but I didn’t get much writing done at all. I did get some more work done on an outline for a story that Owen and I will be working on. The story itself is outlined, and now I’ve just got to work on character profiles, some world building details, and go through it and tweak a few things that have changed due to world building and character details that I’ll be adding. I did have a really good conversation with a few of my writer friends on Facebook about character gender in reference to one of the characters in the story and it really opened up some ideas that I’d never thought about and I’m going to run with one of them because I think it’s going to work really well for the character in question and give an insight to a species that is in this universe we’re creating. That said I haven’t ran the idea by Owen yet, so he may totally veto it. I think he’ll like it though.

I’m back in a period where I haven’t written anything for a few weeks again, and I’m getting twitchy about it. I’m actually thinking about moving this years NaNoWriMo idea to next month and start getting stuck into that once I’ve finished the edits on The Space Watch. It feels like a long time since I’ve just got cracking with something. Aside from the short story for an anthology submission I’ve not really written anything for quite some time which wasn’t working on already written drafts that needed work. I know all this prep work that I’m doing will pay off, and the editing is all part of the process but I’d like to just get some writing done. Hopefully I’m doing the right thing with working on outlines and when I have a first draft done it’ll be cleaner and more coherent and not need extensive editing.

That all said, time to get cracking on with my ‘to-do’ list for the day.

 

21-5-17

I’ve managed to get this edit pass on The Space Watch done and dusted. I’m now waiting on Owen as he wanted to re-write the ending. I’ve also got a list of details we need to clarify and we’re going to have to do a huge continuity check as well.

I didn’t do any outlining today though, now I’ve cleared this up on The Space Watch I can get stuck into that.

I did receive my copy of Dark Cities from Titan Books and edited by Christopher Golden. I primarily brought this because it’s got a Scott Sigler story in it, but when I saw the rest of the line-up it’ll be a no-brainier to buy whether Sigler is in it or not. Speaking or which, here’s the line-up: Nathan Ballingrud, Amber Benson, Kealan Patrick Burke, Ramsey Campbell, M.R. Carey, Nick Cutter, Tananarive Due, Christopher Golden, Simon R. Green, Sherrilyn Kenyon, Kasey Lansdale & Joe R. Lansdale, Tim Lebbon, Jonathan Maberry, Helen Marshall, Seanan McGuire, Cherie Priest, Scott Sigler, Scott Smith, and Paul Tremblay. Now that’s a damn impressive line-up and I’m looking forward to diving into it. Although I’m not sure where on my ‘to-read’ stick it’s going to slip into!

Right, I’m off to read for a while, but I’m back at it tomorrow, I want to get this outline done. 

18-5-17 (2)

A little wrap up for the day. I’ve followed the routine I mentioned in my post earlier and done some work on outlining at lunch time and then this evening another chapter on The Space Watch. I did it a little differently tonight though; I watched some TV and then started work at about nine this evening. I’ve wondered for a while that if I have a time restraint that I’ll be more productive. Tonight it has proved to be the case, but I’m also on a high from wrapping up season two of Sense 8. This show really blows my mind away. It’s so beautifully written, acted, directed, and produced that it’s a true emotional commitment to the show. There have been times during this season that I have been on the edge of my seat, that I have been jumping up and down and fist pumping and cheering the characters on. It’s very few shows or movie that get this response out of me, and Sense 8 is absolutely one of the ones that does and it’s near the top of my favourite all time shows. I cannot wait to see where they take the show from here on out.

I’m calling it a night now, I’m going to read a little before bed and then hopefully do it again tomorrow.

18-5-17

I’ve had a couple of busy days this week so I haven’t got much done, but I did get stuck into The Space Watch again last night and I’ve now got two chapters fully edited. I’m hoping I can get into this now a little bit because I haven’t got much planned socially in the next week, so there’s no reason for me not to.

I had some really good little ideas yesterday which I quickly wrote down before I forgot them. I’ve been working in the mornings, during my lunch breaks, and then in the evenings at the moment. If I can get into the habit of doing this each day I’ll be a very happy man. I am feeling more productive although it’s a little frustrating that I’m not writing fresh words at the moment but I understand all of this prep work is aimed at helping me when I’m getting stuck into future first drafts.

Short story submission-wise, I’ll be sending the first of the two I was told about off to my Beta readers next week. The other story, I still don’t have a solid idea for. I’m going to have a look at the guidelines for it again in the next couple of days to see if it shakes anything loose.