December 2007


You might have noticed a row of cute little buttons on the bottom of my last post. These are icons for the various social networking sites out there. I don’t know much about any of them, except for Stumble, which I do use myself from time to time. But I have been told they are a good way to increase traffic on a blog, so I thought I would give them a try.

It is a mildly technical operation to get them there, as WordPress doesn’t make it as simple as dragging a widget but I figured it out after a lot of trial and error. I had to use the CODE EDITOR!!! (scary…)

So if you like what you read, please take a moment and add my blog to any networks you subscribe to.  Thanks!

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The weather has gone all southerly, after a couple of glorious weeks of sunshine. Good for the garden though, as everything was getting pretty dry. Good for me too. I am in one of those happy modes when the words are coming pretty easily, and I want to sit at my keyboard all day and write, write, write.
It remains to be seen whether any of those words will be of use in the long run. I can’t read over things right after I have written them and have any sense of their quality. It is like there is a another area in the brain that they must be written to first, and then I can see them in a different way. Something like the “objectivity lobe.” Sometimes stuff takes a looonngg time to get there . tee hee.

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My book has hit the aether, and I couldn’t be more excited.  I have rearranged my blog so that the HofH page loads first, but you can still see the latest entry in my blog by looking at the box on the right.

I have been checking out the various eBook retailers to see if I am there.  So far I have found my book on Mobipocket.com and Cyberread.com.  Soon I hope to be on Amazon, Fictionwise and Ebooks.com, but they take a few days to update their sites.

And yeah, I bought the first copy!  

Just finished the first of several sad scenes in book IV. I have to be in a certain head space before I start writing emotional stuff or the words just don’t come out right. I might have to think of sad episodes in my own life, which isn’t that hard, but can be distressing. Sometimes it bothers me for days afterwards, and I get a bleed over from my imaginary world into the real one. Other times I can just listen to sad music and that does the trick. In fact, I have a whole playlist on I-Tunes, with things like Barber’s ‘Adagio for Strings’ and Evanescence’s ‘My Immortal,’ to get me in the mood.

But there was one scene (involving the torture of a favorite character) that I wrote for book III and I still can’t read it again. It’s that upsetting. I don’t know how I am ever going to edit it.

How do the rest of you writers out there deal with writing the difficult passages?

Awesome weather today, sunny and mild.  We spent the morning running errands,  going to the Farmer’s Market in town, and looking for Christmas presents.  Usually by this time of year I am done with my shopping, but this year, thanks to my publication schedule I haven’t even started yet!  Not that I am complaining.  I’ll just have to do a couple of marathon days sometime soon.

My name is up on the Mushroom website as one of their authors, although if you click on  me you get a 404 error. 😦  Hopefully that will change sometime in the next few days.

I did some new words today,  chapter 2 of “Beyond the Gyre.”  I was trying to write a conversation (well more like an argument) between ten people all in the same room.  It was pretty difficult and I am not sure how successfully it turned out.  I’ll have to read what I wrote tomorrow and see what I think then.

I may, perhaps, sign up for an intensive screenwriting seminar to be held at the University of Otago at the end of January.  I know little about writing for movies and television, and I don’t have any plans to do so, but I thought it might help me with dialogue and pacing and scene setting, within the framework of a novel.

Has anyone done any screenwriting?  Is it a subject in which it would be worth trying to acquire some skills?  This class is expensive, so I don’t want to do it unless it will be beneficial to me somehow.

Been at the keyboard most of today, doing the final tidy up of Ketha.  Every time I go through it I find a few more mistakes!  But now I am going to put it away until after Jan 1st, review it once more and then send it off to the publisher.  Otherwise I will keep picking at it and picking at it, with no good result.

Tomorrow I will get back to work on Book IV.

I did take a break for an hour or so, to take my son and his girlfriend out to lunch at a new Japanese restaurant that just opened in town.  We had some excellent teppan yaki, and enjoyed ourselves, but when I came out I discovered someone had sideswiped my honda and scraped up the bumper!  Not a happy end to my lunch.  At least the guilty driver left a note…

Last night I finished going over book II, Ketha’s Daughter, with Mike.  We had forty pages to work through and it all went pretty smoothly.  I only have a few minor edits to take care of before I send it away to my publisher after the Christmas break.  Then we will go into another round of editing and changes, but hopefully not too many!  I have trimmed about 3,000 words from Ketha over the last few months, leaving a tighter story with less “telling” on my part.  The urge to tell and explain everything to the reader is one I have constant difficulties with, especially since my “world” is a fairly complex one.  There are two or three levels of story, with attendant characters, going on all the time.

But I tell myself that I mustn’t spoon feed the reader.  I like challenging works, and I hope other people do too.

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