Posts Tagged ‘muse’

I have managed the last two days to get in decent morning writing sessions. Redemption’s Child progresses and I’ve reach the first real ‘excitement’ scene. I hope that from this point on the tension, and action just keep escalating. This novel promises to be both very entertaining to me to write, and yet challenging as well.

As I see it, the breathing spaces in the story should come further, and further, apart and be shorter, and shorter, each time. A rising pace through out the novel, that – hopefully – had the reader flicking the pages towards the climax with greater enthusiasm and need.

A story can’t be all action, without some pauses, it simply becomes too much – almost boring – I plan to keep this  in mind as I go. There is also an emotional aspect, regarding what my protagonist is going through, as the story progresses, that needs to be shown. This will help both give small breaks in the action while giving more impact and tension during the action scenes.

I’m worried about my portrayal of the child that Jonathan is watching over. I don’t have much exposure to children in my life, and thus don’t have real world experience to draw on. I do expect  that anything which rings too false or contrary, will be brought to my attention by my beta-reader as she does have such experiences to compare to.

For now, as always, I write. I write without judging or worrying. I write the tale as it is shared with me by my Muse – all other aspects will be dealt with when the novel is edited.

For the last few years my writing life has been firmly planted in the world of Jonathan Alvey. A reality close to this one, but with addition of magic and monsters that a portion of the population knows about. This world is where my brain exists. From novels to short stories, if I’m writing–or even just contemplating possibilities–it is in Alvey world.

This wasn’t always true. Years ago my brain was firmly set in another world. Still urban fantasy, but more along the lines of Charles de Lint than … well, I’ve been told Jim Butcher. I wrote two and a half novels and a number of short stories in this other world. I loved that world, it was fun in it’s own right.

And while I was still dancing with the fairies of that world, a darker, weirder, place got birthed in my brain. A world of the dead, of ash and bone, and – yes – magic. I started a novel based in this world, and had whispers of short stories floating in my mind.

All of this got put aside once I finished that first short story with Jonathan Alvey. With the birth of the White Dragon Black world, all others were laid to a long rest–until recently.

Just over the last couple months, that darker world has stirred. The land of the dead is calling to me and I’m not sure what to do.

Not including ‘Redemption’s Child’, which I have just begun, I still have five more novels set in the WDB to write. I assume there will also be the two, or three, short stories per year as well. I don’t want to leave this world. There is in me a fear that if I step away, I will somehow lose this strong connection, this deep understanding of Alvey, and my ability to channel his world.

And yet…

And yet, I have a strong urge to write a short story set in the that other darker land. I want to feel the ash on the wind and my fingers along the bones.

Do I risk living in one world to taste another again? Do I find out just how good a writer I am? Do I walk that side alley or keep on this wide street? Do I challenge my brain or remain content in my accomplishments.

I honestly don’t know. My Muse may be the final arbitrator in this internal struggle. Maybe, in the end, I won’t have a choice.

I think this beginning to the sixth White Dragon Black novel will need to be heavily edited. The game of slowly give them most of the information they need if they haven’t read any other of the series, while keeping it fresh for the returning fans tends to complicate things.

Sure I could just go with the theory that any readers I’m going to have I’m going t have by this point but I really hate find a series that sounds good only to realize the only book i can find is number five and I need the other four to have a clue — and so don’t read that book or any of the series at all.

At any rate, it seems that this ‘opening’ has gone on too long to be viable, at least that id my gut instinct. But, as I hold firm to the philosophy of  ‘just get it down’ I’m not going to do much about it, or worry how it’s playing out. I’ll try to keep in mind, as I move forward, to pick up the pace a bit but I write what my Muse gives me.

I’m also just going to go with it, despite meaning lots of editing later, because I really plan on just enjoying getting this one out. The plot, should allow for me to stride foolishly forward, and just roll with the punches. It feels like the sort of story that you simple let tumble out of you and laugh in half terror like you are on a roller-coaster.

As for the work that might come of that later, well it will be much later (years in fact) and I managed to get through all the reworking that ‘Binding & Spines’ needed, which included a complete scramble and re-mashing of the first five, or so, chapters. The end result, I believe, worked out quite well and so, trusting my ability to edit as well as write… let the merry winds of creativity blow full my sails.

I’m trying to make sure I write everyday. Somedays I am a complete failure, somedays I do quite well. This morning I wrote over a thousand words but yesterday I barely wrote seven hundred. I am so close to the end of the fifth WDB novel. ‘Backstabbers & Believers’ now. I am ready to draw this one to a close. I am always ready by this point in the game. It’s not that I dislike the story, or even grow tired of it. After months working in the same department I just get to wanting to have a break maybe try another position.

There is also my Muse – by this point I am either chasing a short story, or just finishing one, so I can get back to the novel. In this case, she has given me what I need to start the next novel. So inside me, the sixth book is growing,the idea getting traction, and the images intruding.

I need to make sure the ending is right, so I can’t really afford to be distracted and yet… So I am trying to be a firm but understanding boss to myself. I must finish that novel – there is a dead line – and it is the point where the next novel leaps out, onto the screen, without sparing a glance at the ‘old’ novel.

Working for The Man can be tough – but working for That Woman….

When I upgraded my Mac to a brand new one because the one before died, I didn’t realize that my old ‘Word’ program wouldn’t be compatible. This gave me pause as Mac’s word processor, ‘Pages’ sucks (especially the way the ‘track changes’ feature works). I love Mac’s, have for decades, but the new word processor just isn’t industry standard friendly. I’m sorry Mac but the industry works in ‘Word’ and that is just the way it is.

Another author from my publishing house said they had been using LibreOffice for their manuscript without issue. It was free, and if compatible, then it answered my needs. I downloaded it and started working in it. Then came time to do the edits for ‘Blondes, Books, & Bourbon’. As my editor and I worked through the stories for the anthology, we quickly came to find that there were indeed issues with LibreOffice translating to ‘Word’ .docx files.

This quickly became our bane, or mutual antagonist, and lead to many curses being thrown about.

We muddled our way through, every step being more work than it should. Every single edit was the cause for over vigilance to see if something, somewhere had gone screwy. This couldn’t go on. We managed to finish the anthology but we both agreed there was no way in hell that we could start on ‘Bindings & Spines,’ the next novel, with the current set up I had.

I stated to try to figure out about getting ‘Word’ on my computer. Not only was it expensive (especially since I didn’t need the whole ‘Office’ package, just ‘Word’) but I found out that ‘track changes’ caused the system to crash. Not good, as this is how edits are done.

I mentioned this on the group page for Xchyler publishing and many authors and editors alike were worried as they had just upgraded. Everyone came back over the next few days /weeks and said they hd no issue with crashing. Good – now I just needed to get my hands on a copy.

A good friend contacted me and said he could help. So I finally got ‘Word’ on my new Mac. I loaded it and wrote a sentence, went to track changes and …. it crashed. This hadn’t happened to the one I got the programme for but it was for me.

Story of my life.

I spent the next day downloading all the upgrades that had been put out, and then installing each and everyone. When I had done all I could, I tried again. Wrote a sentence, turned on track changes and ….

It worked! I have yet to go through the process of sending a file out and having it come back to me with changes made and see if it works. Or if it still works when I make the changes on the returned document , but  am staying hopeful. It did manage to translate the fifth novel correctly from LibreOffice – from what I can tell.

I pray to the gods of writing and story telling that all is well now. Maybe my Muse will have a word with them to make sure… I know I don’t like to cross her.