Category Archives: music

Write 1/Sub 1 check in: week 3

Week 3! This week I finished a long short story. Word count says it’s a novelette, but I think it wants to be a novella when it grows up.

This coming week I would really like to work on some shorter stories.

Writing:

  • Aliens & Invisibility ~ 11,800 words. Aliens & Invisibility is not its title, just a reminder (to me) about its content. Although I feel compelled to say that the aliens in the story aren’t invisible. You can see them. Or could, if they weren’t a fictional construct. You know what I mean. 

Submitting:

  • Long Distance Charges May Apply, another super short story (80 words) that I sent to a postcard fiction site.
  • The Burden of So Many Roses, normally I don’t send stories out so soon after writing them, but this was in response to a prompt call for submissions with a deadline, so out it went.

Rejections, etc.:

  • Cash or Check (that 44-word story) was a finalist but did not make the winners’ list. Which, if you recall, I was totally fine with since part of the prize was reading on stage. 

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Write 1/Sub 1 check in: week 2 is untitled

Week 2! This week I worked on a longer short story and I think I have about 5,000 words. It’s on my Mobile Pro, which doesn’t have a word count function, so I’m guesstimating by its file size. (And yes, I’ve written so many scenes/stories on my Mobile Pro, I can do this. Certainly a skill I can apply to other areas of my life.)

I completed an untitled (for now) flash fiction, which I managed to write without a single line of dialogue. However, it does have neck tattoos. So, you know, there’s that. It’s Desperate Housewives meets Breaking Bad. In 600 words. Without dialogue. Yeah. This one’s going to sell.

Writing:

  • Untitled flash fiction, ~600 words
  • Untitled longer short story, not complete ~ 5,000 words

That longer short story? Another dream-inspired one. I crawled out of bed and scribbled down the notion, even though I had some note cards and a pen on the nightstand.

Submitting:

  • Two Hammers, a persona poem I wrote during a poetry class last year. I found a lit journal that focuses on historical topics, so I sent it there.

Also in this week’s writing news: I did some revising and wrote several pages on a story that only wants to be written by hand.

Be sure to check the Write 1 Sub 1 Satummary page each week. It includes links to all the published stories from the Write 1 Sub 1 participants for the week. Not only is it some good reading, but if you’re a writer, it’s a great way to get a feel for the market as well.

Highlights: UFO anthology editor Alex Shvartsman has a really cool story up at Daily Science Fiction, and my friend Von has a lovely New Year’s story at Every Day Fiction.

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Write 1/Sub 1 check in: week 1

Well, did I do it? I think so! Here’s my tally for the week.

Writing:

  • Fire and Ice, a novelette, ~8,500 words
  • The Burden of So Many Roses, flash, ~1,260 words

Here’s the crazy thing: I totally dreamed the start of the novelette. And in dream-like fashion, I was both writing the story and in the story. This never happens to me. I never dream stories. But since the universe offered up this gift, I decided to go for it and the whole thing tumbled out of me in a matter of three days, no planning, no outlining, nothing but words. It. Was. Glorious.

The flash I hope to cut down a bit, to about 1,000 words. I suspect a good 200 or more are throat-clearing anyway and this won’t be too tough.

Submitting:

  • Cash or Check, a 44-word story (hey, it counts) to a local flash fiction (100 words or less) contest. I am actually hoping not to win or place, since the prize includes getting up on stage and reading your work. The introvert’s nightmare. This will be my happiest rejection ever.

And, thanks to that novelette, I’ve had this Pat Benatar classic running through my head all week. Now, it can run through yours. You can thank me later.

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Musical interlude: Ode to Kindle Fire (with apologies to Bruce Springsteen)

I’m browsing on the ‘net, I click on the Add to Cart
I think I should delete, but this is just the start
I say I won’t like it, but you know I’m a liar
‘Cause when we surf
Hmmm, fire

Well late at night, I’m tapping your screen
Well you say I wanna an app, I say free Angry Birds is just mean
I say I don’t love you, but l can’t hide my desire
And when we surf
Ohhh, fire, fire

You had a hold on me right from the start
It’s a grip so tight I couldn’t tear it apart
My nerves all jumpin’ actin’ like a fool
Your graphics they burn, but your case stays cool

Romeo and Juliet, Samson and Delilah
But Kindle you can bet their love they didn’t deny
My words say quit, but my words they lie
‘Cause when we surf
Hmmm, fire, fire

Burnin’ in my soul, my Kindle’s out of control
Fire

So. Do I love my Kindle Fire? Yes, yes I do. I wasn’t sure I was going to like the back-lit e-reader vs. e-ink, but so far I think I’ve actually been reading more, not less. Of course, being able to adjust the brightness helps.

Oh, and streaming content? Yes, please. Right now, I’m working through all of Ken Burns’s documentaries. (Civil War first to complement the War Through the Generations reading challenge.)

And I can check my email, go on Facebook, and, and, and …

And … check out the book between Pasta and Tina Fey. Could it be Juliet Immortal by Stacey Jay? Why, yes. I think it is. See, even the 2009 Debs are on fire.

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Musical Interlude: Strings and Clocks

The First Time Trivia: Although I don’t mention the song the cafeteria string quartet is playing in my story The Trouble With Firsts, I spent a lot of time listening to Vitamin String Quartet trying to find the perfect one.

Didn’t know there was such a thing as a cafeteria string quartet? Well, the answer to the why and how is somewhere in The Trouble With Firsts.

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Conversations with my son

FADE IN:

[INT. SUV, weekday morning, on way to school]

Son: Mom, is this the real life?

Mom: Or is this just fantasy?

Son: I’m caught in a landslide.

Mom: You know what? There’s really no escape from reality.

Son: Open your eyes.

Mom (pointing): Look up to the skies and see.

Son: I’m just a poor boy

Mom: You need no sympathy

Son: Because I’m easy come, easy go

Mom: Little high, little low.

Son: Any way the wind blows

Mom: Doesn’t really matter to me

Son (dramatic): To me!

PAUSE

Daughter: What are you guys talking about?

FADE OUT.

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Nerd news

Around the web this week, in case you missed it:

Great blog post by literary agent Nathan Bransford on the television show Lost and the High Narrative Price of WTF. And if that title doesn’t tempt you, I don’t know what will. Good message for writers–good message for all of us.

In Nerd News: Remember Windows 3.1? Or maybe you’ve never even seen Windows 3.1 (!). Why not take a stroll down virtual memory lane with the Windows 3.1 online emulator. Prepare yourself for a visual shock, and while you’re there, you can even play Mine Sweeper. (Go on, click through. You know you want to.)

And what post would be complete without a YouTube video. From the fine, fine people who brought us Do You Wanna Date My Avator comes this new music video:

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Summertime …

With apologies to George Gershwin.

Summertime, and the writing is easy,
Verbs are jumping, and the word count is high
Your agent is quick, and editor forgiving
So, hush, little writer, don’t you cry.

Yes, Darcy and I have been busy writing. Will anything come of that? You’ll have to stay tuned … it’s kind of like a cliffhanger, isn’t it?

Oh, and here’s the real version of that song:

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In which I once again reveal my mash-up addiction

I wonder if you have to be a certain age to enjoy this. I thought Andrew (aka classic rock kid) might. He does like Metallica and has Enter Sandman on his iPod. His response when this was done:

“It’s weird.”

I, on the other hand, love it. Love. It.

Not only does the band in question, Rock Sugar, have this mash up, it’s apparently what they do. All mash-ups, all the time. Dude. Even better, they’ve taken Madonna’s Like a Prayer and combined it with AC/DC’s Shook Me All Night Long. Definitive proof Like a Prayer should’ve been a heavy metal song all along.

I tell you, these guys are genius.

So, if you’re of a certain age, enjoy:

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Miles to go

I have one thing to say today:

It. Is. Finished!!!!!

Okay, what is actually finished is this round of revisions. Unfortunately, “It is revised!” doesn’t have the same ring to it.

I still have miles to go before I sleep–or rather, before it’s ready to go. But I think/hope I have the main restructuring slog out of the way. This is really a “my reach may exceed my grasp” kind of story. So for now, I’ll let The Fine Art of Holding Your Breath compost.

Even with the all the work ahead of me, I can’t help feeling a little bit like this:

This leaves me free to revisit Dating on the Dork Side, which I’m also very excited about. Although, I accidently opened one of its files yesterday. As I told Darcy: it reads like I downed half a bottle of NyQuil before I sat down to write.

So. Miles to go there as well.

Think I’ll go list to Ode to Joy one more time. 

Because really, when you finish any draft of a manuscript, the skies should open, light should pour down, and all the animals of the forest should burst into song.

And the Berlin Philharmonic should personally come to your house.

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