Thursday, March 26, 2009

Biz News

I don't usually link to lots of news, but some really exciting things have crossed my inbox and twitter feed over the last few days.

For starters, many of you probably heard back in January that the amazing fantasy magazine, Realms of Fantasy, was closing. The announcement marked a sad day for many, myself included. I'm a long time reader of the magazine, and always intended to submit a short story (but I don't write a lot of short fiction, so never did.) Well, I found out today that Tir Na Nog Press purchased RoF earlier this month! They are not yet open to fiction submissions, but the magazine will return in July. Welcome back Realms of Fantasy!

In other, completely unrelated news, the Knight agency is currently running a cool contest for unagented writers called Book in a nutshell. The challenge it to write a compelling 'query/pitch' in only three sentences (150 words.) Twenty of the best queries will be requested by agents at the Knight agency, and feedback (and possibly an offer of representation) will be given. It sounds like a fun little challenge, and the Tri Mu plan to work on some three line queries this weekend at the lock-in.

Speaking of the Tri Mu and the lock-in...yes, we are having one. Husbands will be abandoned and manuscripts embraced this weekend. We are going on a mini writing retreat, with the plan of being highly productive (my wordcount needs it) but I'm sure there will also be much goofiness, and at least one or two short story challenges. I'll be headed to the lock-in after work tomorrow and returning Sunday. My goal is to hit 30k by the end of the weekend. That gives me four days to write 12k (I haven't started my writing yet for the day) so wish me a productive lock-in!

Current wordcount on HB2: (Woot! I hit the 20% mark)

18023 / 90000 words. 20% done!

Monday, March 23, 2009

Still alive!

I've been trying to blog regularly, but I totally failed at that goal last week. I didn't post once on my personal blog, though I did post about why I keep a scrap file over at the Tri Mu blog.

Speaking of the Tri Mu blog, we are in the process of revamping the site. We added two new members at the beginning of the year and created a new (and much improved) blogging schedule, so a new look was also in order. I designed the newest layout (see the image at the right) and worked out the coding over the course of the last week or so. We are still creating some of the content, but the site is now live and coming along nicely. So check it out and let us know what you think! (It's been a lot of fun, and we had a 'Tri Mu picture day' yesterday. You can see some of the images at the site, but I'll post more here in the coming days, so stop back by soon.)

Other than my work with the Tri Mu, I haven't felt very accomplished recently. I spent several days extremely ill. My puny wordcount reflects both the ick and my ignoring the book during recovery. I'm tossing the wordmeter out for the blogsphere to see, and hanging my head in shame (all the more drive to catch up--right?)

Progress Meter: HB2

16155 / 90000 words. 18% done!

I have a busy week ahead of me, both in writing and in my day job. It's going to be a crazy one, but I'm over the ick, so hopefully I can make good use of my time. My goal for this week is to double my current word count. Wish me luck!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

A little behind, but still confident

This weekend wasn't as productive as I would have liked. I always hope weekends will be my chance to pull ahead, after all, they are theoretically less busy than the chaotic work week. But, alas, I fell behind instead of pulling ahead. It was my own fault. I should know by now that I am always busy. I seriously need to utilize my time better.

But, hope is not lost. During my lunch hour I finished the last scene in chapter 2. The next chapter includes a scene I love and can't wait to write, and then the chapter after that (I think) introduces a new character to the series who is one of my favorite secondary characters in the book. So, hopefully the next couple chapters will fly off my fingers. That said, sometimes the scenes I look forward to most take the longest because ideas get lost between the picture in my head and the keyboard, and I struggle to get the scene right. Does that ever happen to anyone else?

Well, wish me luck. I'm supposed to cross 10k tonight, but I'll be happy to hit 9k and pick up the extra thousand words tomorrow.

Current Wordcount for HB2:
Zokutou word meterZokutou word meter
7,084 / 90,000

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Writing Progress and Busyness

Wow, it's already Thursday and the fifth day in March. There is so much going on right now that I feel like I'm behind on everything. But, I'm right on target with my word count. I haven't done my writing for the day yet (darn day job getting in the way) but I'm moving along in my gradual crawl, so I should cross the 5% mark. Okay, its not a grand mile marker, but it's progress!

Word Count for HB2:
Zokutou word meterZokutou word meter
4,167 / 90,000

Monday, March 02, 2009

The SC Book Festival and A Challenge Begun

This weekend I attended the SC Book Festival. I have been going to this particular festival regularly for the last three or four years, and I always enjoy it. This is a readers festival, not a writing conference, so I don't go expecting to learn much (though this time I did pick up some grisly details about decaying bodies from an author who co-writes with the man who started the body farm.) But, I do usually come home with a new writer (or, at least, new to me) to read. This year I went to a panel with the very interesting J. T. Ellison, and I will definitely be looking for her thrillers next time I stop by the bookstore.

In other news, the the Tri Mu started a writing challenge this weekend. We had planned to have a writing challenge at some point later this year, but as I need HB2 written sooner rather than later, NLBerger recently discovered a shiny she couldn't wait to write, and Tori needed a push to finish her WIP, we moved up the date. My goal during this challenge is to write a decent draft in the next three months. Usually I write a really fast but bad first draft and then spend a lot of time editing. With HB2, I'm setting my daily wordcount goal lower than I normally would (only 1k a day) and I intend to do a macro edit as I write. I've never tried this approach before, and if I get too caught up in editing the previous day's words and not writing new ones, I'll have to abandon it, but hopefully by using this method I can effectively end with a product that is more of a second draft than a hideous first. We will see.

Current progress:
Zokutou word meterZokutou word meter
1,544 / 90,000

Wow, that's a sad little word meter, but it includes only the first day and the work I did at lunch. That little red bar will be growing soon.

What has everyone else been up to? Did you have a good weekend?