Category Archives: The cat

Weekly writing check-in: more short stories, novella, and Photoshop

Oreo, volunteer editor

I am diligently trying to keep myself out of the Photoshop black hole. Fortunately (or, perhaps, unfortunately), I don’t have a title for the first book or the series it’s supposed to be in, so there’s only so much cover designing I can do.

Yeah. I need a title, especially since I’d like to publish this year.

In other news, not only did I complete the outline for the novella, but I started the draft. I finished up revising/editing two short stories that I plan to send off this week as well.

All in all, it was a good writing week.

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Weekly writing check-in: Hello, July!

Kitty can’t believe the year is half over

A quick update from last week: I did successfully find some cupcakes. The girls demolished the strawberry ones so quickly it was almost frightening.

In writing news, I have somehow managed ~12,000 words of revised/new content while using the exercises in The Emotional Craft of Fiction. This surprised me since I feel as if I’m plodding along and not making a lot of progress. Additionally, I revamped the opening scenes as well.

Sometimes, you have to stop and take stock of where you’ve been.

This week, I’m looking forward to getting some more work done on the exercises in the book as well as some additional brainstorming for the rest of the series. I have several high-level story threads that I want to keep track of as I move through not only this revision but the rest of the series.

I also might follow kitty’s lead and schedule some time for a nap.

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Weekly writing check-in: reading pillows and dictation

So tomorrow is the big day. My BookBub featured deal for the first season of Coffee and Ghosts goes out the door (or through the email server) bright and early.

To say I’m nervous is an understatement. In fact, I’ve been dreaming about the featured deal. I’ve been checking obsessively to make sure that the book is still free everywhere. So far so good.

If you haven’t grabbed a copy yet, you should, you really should. Because, again, it’s free everywhere.

To follow up on my cryptic note from last week about productivity, I’ve decided to try dictation.

While I am hoping it will help me write more, I’m not sure if I’m going to use it to dictate actual stories, or if I’ll just use it to brainstorm notes, outlines, and things like that. But the main reason I’m looking into this is that I want to future-proof my writing.

Last year on Mother’s Day I woke up with my upper back, my neck, and my right arm completely seized up—and it hurt like you wouldn’t believe. I could barely move. I really couldn’t write, and I could barely do my job.

We just finished up a huge software update at work, and I was starting to head down that path again, and that’s not a place I want to go. Despite doing all of my physical therapy exercises, it’s still a little iffy at this point.

I did write this week, but not as much as I wanted to. So. Dictation. I’ve been reading up on it. I’ve been practicing. I’ve also made some classic mistakes as well, like jumping into my work-in-progress and trying to dictate that.

Pro tip: don’t do this.

New reading pillow: what’s mine is hers.

I’ve discovered I can’t look at the screen when I dictate, and a lot of the advice on dictation echoes this. Looking puts you into editing mode, and I think it’s even worse than editing while you’re drafting on the keyboard.

I think my ideal set up is going to be to walk and talk. Right now I’m just trying out a recorder app on my phone. I don’t want to spend a lot of money on a system that may not work for me. On the other hand, I did dictate last week’s blog, and right now I am dictating the draft to this week’s blog.

True, I need to do a little editing, but a lot less than I expected.

And now, I’m going to go reclaim my reading pillow.

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Weekly writing check-in: an outline in the bag!

I have an outline for the first story in the fairy tale series in the bag (along with a cat). Not only that, but I have an inkling of what might happen in the other books, and how I’ll go about accomplishing that.

Well. More or less.

I might start writing the draft this week. I want to do a little more brainstorming of the entire series, get something more concrete than “bad stuff happens here” and things like that.

That’s about it for this week. I think I got a rejection (checks submission tracker … yep, I did), which I’ll look to sending out in the next few days or so. Otherwise, I’ve been focusing on the new series and getting everything ready for the Coffee and Ghosts BookBub in May.

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Weekly writing check-in: quiet holiday reading and writing

Things slow down once school is out for winter break, and the dance team is on a break as well (that sound you hear is my sigh of relief). So it has been a quiet week.

Well, except for the cat, that is. It took her until the 22nd, but she finally claimed the tree. She didn’t stay long. I suspect now that she’s older, it isn’t as much fun.

I did get some writing in this week and made progress on the fairy tale project. Plus, I hit 90 books read for the year (so far). Even though I’m on vacation, I’m not sure I can make it to 100 books by the 31st. That being said, I think I’m going to try.

Writing work:

  • Series work (structure, brainstorming, research)
  • Truby masterclass
  • Fairy Tale Project
  • Writing ~4,300 words

Submissions:

  • None

Rejections:

  • None

Acceptances:

  • None

Publications:

  • None

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Weekly writing check-in: cat and mouse and keeping time

At the last minute, I decided to sign up for a flash fiction course. It’s very short–two weeks with assignments every other day. So far I’ve written three flash pieces. I thought today we might get a rest. But no! The instructor just posted today’s lesson.

Also? I need to write my last essay for the fairy tale class. I will need to get my writing on, once again.

A couple of rejections this week, but–hey!–I sold audio rights to Keeping Time.

And in a few weeks, I should have several more stories to submit.

Assuming I go get my assignments done.

Writing Work:

  • Planning/researching new series
  • Story planning and notes
  • Fairy Tale class/Folklore class
  • Flash Fiction class (!)

Submissions:

  • None

Rejections:

  • Fire and Ivy
  • The Way Home

Acceptances:

  • Keeping Time (audio)

Publications:

  • None

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Weekly writing check-in: the one with the animals

Tortoise

For the second weekend in a row, we’ve done something fun with my daughter’s Girl Scout troop. This time, instead of volunteering at a walk, we raised money and completed the walk. Her troop raised ~1,500 dollars for the Animal Humane Society and we had a blast at the walk.

We also met this gal. She’s a youngster, only twenty years old.

The only thing left to do is bridge the girls to senior scouts (!) and eat some cake. Yeah, I’m pretty sure that’s going to involve cake.

In the writing world this week, I’m doing something to shake things up a bit. I’m following along with A Story a Day in May. This week, I ended up with six short stories. I took one day off to work on edits for a story that’s in a forthcoming anthology, but otherwise, I got it done.

Now, granted, one story was a drabble (exactly 100 words), but those can take more time than you might imagine. I ended up with two stories that involve dragons, one that features a succubus, a vignette, one told entirely in text messages, and one that can only be described as crazy.

It was a good week.

Writing Work:

  • Writing: ~ 5,000 words in six short stories
  • Craft work (reading, video lectures, etc.)

Submissions:

  • Like Bread Loves Salt

Rejections:

  • Like Bread Loves Salt

Acceptances:

  • None

Publications:

  • None

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