Posts Tagged ‘muse’

I am only a few chapters from the end of this the final round of edits — well, the final round before I send it to my publisher — and I discovered something. I’m a scatterbrained, sponge-headed, ninny.

I have somehow got random versions all mixed about, despite carefully trying not to. The chapters I’m working with are not necessarily the ones I should be, the manuscript I was going off, may not be the latest version and I have one version which may be the latest (pre this edit round) but I can’t find the proof of it.

Last time I was going through this – and had been sending chapters to my beta-reader I came to a point where I stopped. Life happened, but also I had a thought, a creative blurp that I didn’t know if I could actually follow. There would be good things to it, but it may interfere with the flow of the novel. I paused, waiting for more chapters to return and to deal with whatever it was life was using to beat me down.

Time passed

When I returned to this novel, to finish a final edit /read through before passing on to my editor at Xchyler, I had assumed I could follow this side track. I got the inspiration from my Muse and wrote a half chapter and then a new ending to tack on to the one already there. Based on these additions I wove in a tertiary plot line, because it worked and would enrich the tale just that little bit.

Now I know I have pasted the place where this new chapter would come in. I realized that I had been adding chapters to a manuscript that just stopped – assuming this was the right one because it stopped when I stopped adding the edited version to it. However, it should have stopped at this point of possible revelation…which it didn’t.

I have already tried combing through the knots in all the different versions of chapters, and manuscripts trying to find that place – that moment captured in words. I have yet to find to find it. Thus I have to widen my search and get a finer toothed comb as well.

If I can’t find the right place, I will have to cruise through and see if I can find a place it should go – or more importantly can go. I have to see if I can actually fuse this new chapter into the manuscript. I want it there, I think it helps – but if there isn’t a true place waiting for it’s inclusion… forcing it may just result in further work all along the writing that will simply be cut out again once my editor reads it.

I finished up with the last chapter edits from my beta-reader. I have four or fine chapters left to edit. I will leave it as it is for now. I am getting my Scadian on this week, and going to a five day camping event leaving Wednesday morning. Tuesday will be final run around and packing up – and so the issue of guessing which is the right manuscript will wait. I will attack the puzzle fresh when I return next week and try not to stress about it until then.

I’ve been busy these last few days and loving it!

Let’s start with the Bad Ass — Jonathan Alvey. As I mentioned in an earlier post, I wrote a new chapter that fit near the end of Bindings & Spines.  This opened up the way for a new final chapter to be tagged on – a sort of wrap up, on a lighter note. My editor, McKenna, over at Xchyler Publishing, told me to get to work on final edits, because she couldn’t get to working on the project soon enough. Not one whose foolish enough to argue with Muse or Editor, I did just that.Bindings and Spines1

(cover art for Bindings & Spines – created my Carrion House)

I have started the edits, which will also involve adding new material. The path opened by that new chapter, allows for the occasional incursion of a tertiary plot, which I hope will be a nice, slightly comical, side line. So as I edit, when the opportunity arises, I will include new scenes. Bit more work, but I believe it will help the flow over all. If I’m wrong – I have no delusions that McKenna will allow them to stay.

Now, on to the Brass and Glass.
BglassKRingThe other creative side of my life, the making of pretty shiny things for SCA play, has been going rather well. I made a new bronze ring for my wife, with a nice blue glass ‘gem’ set in it. And another that has a small little St.Mark lion engraved into the face. St. Mark being the patron saint of Venice, where our scadian persona are from. She didn’t have any rings that fit anything other than her pinkie or ring finger so I had to change that. Woman of the period wear many rings on their fingers, sometimes two on the same finger, so she definitely needed more.

I also am working on a brass signet ring for myself. It will have my heraldry and my makers mark on it, and will be able to be used to make a seal in wax – a very period thing for a male to posses. I have been running into some difficulty getting the soldering job to hold. I don’t know if this is because I simply haven’t done soldering of any sort in a decade, or if the solder I have is crappy, or if it’s because I’ve never worked with brass before, or if my pieces are just not fitting true enough. Many things to factor into understanding why something isn’t working. The process of figuring out just what is the the problem, is one of trial and error. Patience is a virtue when trying to teach yourself something as tricky as proper jewelry techniques, luckily I seem to possess that– at least when it comes to this aspect of my life.

I have to admit to finding this reoccurring mistake less frustrating that I might have a decade ago. This can be laid squarely at the feet of being on the right medication. Just one more reason I’m glad that we found out about my mental health issues, and worked to get them under control – no more hammers flying across the room.

Well, that’s my update, now I have to see if the latest refitting and solder job held. If not, well, maybe it’s time to hit the manuals and see why.

There is no doubt, the Bitch is back, and am I glad to see her!

Yesterday, I wrote most of a new chapter for the next novel, Bindings & Spines. Just over 1300 words, put down and those words set a certain path before me. It opened up a small part of the novel I wasn’t sure I was going to traverse, but now, with my Muse giving me the words for that chapter, it’s inclusion or not was no longer a question.

With that chapter, I could now add a new wrap up chapter, which also opened the way for me to include a small element of the novel, enrich it slightly and weave it through the course of the tale. Mostly it will serve as a bit of a light hearted break, a jog into the slightly silly to adjust the flow of mood in the novel.

Just to prove she was back for some serious work, this morning I sat down and my Muse opened up the understanding for how that new last chapter would go. I wrote essentially the whole thing in one sitting – 1600 words.

It feels so good so have those words pour out of me, and I think I can say – the fever has caught me because…the Bitch is Back!

I haven’t been writing much these past few weeks, as I’ve said, but that doesn’t mean I haven’t been picking at the flesh of the stories already started.  Last night, I get into bed relishing the fact that it is finally warm enough that I can sleep unencumbered by clothing. I no sooner lay my head down, and my Muse sends me a postcard from wherever it is she’s off vacationing. What is this notice about? It seems it may be the key to unlock the plot snafu of a certain short story. What do I do? What every good author does – get out of bed and head for the computer.

So there I am, happy to be possibly working out this issue, happy to be out putting words, happy I’m not freezing to death in my birthday suit. I know, an image none of you wanted in your head, but it made me happy. It’s nice to not have to put on layers just to get out of bed and do anything. There is a freedom and ability to be spontaneous.

ShadesAndShadows_Cover_full-resbigcoverLLAnyway – I only wrote 450 words or so, but I did write. At this point I’ll take every single word with joy. The bitter sweet part of this is that the story was started to be submitted to this years Xchyler’s paranormal anthology. So if I can work it out, it’s a little too late to be submitted. I feel strange about this as I first got a WDB story published in such an anthology, Shades and Shadows, and then was in the following years, Legends and Lore.

On a down side, my drive belt slipped off the tensioner pulley and shredded. I got a new belt – ouch, that wasn’t cheap – and put it on. I only ran the truck for roughly 30 seconds, and then stopped and checked out how the belt was sitting. It was half off the tensioner pulley and the next one in the route. Not good. So a couple hours of internet searching told me that I needed to swap out my tensioner unit – not good – but it did tell me how, which is good. Whether I can actually accomplish this feat is yet to be seen. The replacement part is ordered and should come in Tuesday, so that gives me some time to fight with it (which, hopefully, won’t actually be the case).

Maiden's Heart completed

In other news, I finished the jewelry piece I was working on, my wife’s maiden Heart, and am not entirely displeased with the outcome. Mostly, I wish that when I started it, way back when we were last playing in the SCA, that I hadn’t used epoxy to put it together. I am sort of on a kick now to do everything properly. I guess time has made me a purest. I do the same with my writing – I don’t make up monsters but work hard to find folktales and myths that have creatures that fit what I am looking for – more work, but more satisfaction.
I can now move on to one of the other projects I have in mind to do for our SCA life. I am making a ring for myself, and there is feast gear to make period and pretty, and a toothpick pomander for my wife. All of these will be made in a manner I can proudly show off, even if it means it takes longer to finish them.

I need to start going through the next White Dragon Black novel, Bindings & Spines, once again, to make sure it it as good as I can make it. I will soon be working with my editor, McKenna Gardener, at Xchyler Publishing to get it out into the world, and the more issues I can spot and repair myself the better for us both.

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Speaking of novel’s out in the world; my first, Tomorrow Wendell, just recently had a bounce up in the Amazon ratings. It shot up from 768 684 on Wednesday to 116 252 on Friday. It is now slowly sinking again, but this is the second spike it has had since the Ad Astra Con. This makes me hope that maybe, just maybe, people actually downloaded the free version of the anthology, Blondes, Books, & Bourbon, and not only enjoyed it, but enjoyed it enough to get my novel.

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So all in all, I can’t complain about where life has me situated right now. Taking each day in stride, and trying not to worry and stress about tomorrow.

So I have been dry on the writing front for a couple weeks. No real desire, no scenes in my head, no dialogue in my inner ears. No Muse . . . well, no usual Muse.

Maiden's Heart MoreWhile my writing Muse may have stepped out, another has taken her place. I have been making, crafting, constructing, with great joy and success. I don’t want this to stop, and have lots of inspiration and many things that need making, and that’s just for me, and my lady’s, use. The real fun comes in making things for other people, especially when they don’t know you are doing so. So, I’m glad to be creating, and to know my skills are still there.

But – I’d also still like to maintain my relationship with my other Muse.

This morning she dropped by just let me know she hasn’t forgotten me, and to make sure I remember how much she enjoys torturing me. I was on the toilet! Sitting there, pants around my ankles and suddenly – ‘Hey, here’s a scene for you with a bit of dialogue to go with. It’s for a new short story – in case you didn’t catch that. So any way, gotta run, have fun.’

So the next place I sat down was my desk.  I put that short story opening into my word processor and saved it. One more started short story. One more file waiting for more words to fulfill it’s purpose. But if I can finish this one – it may just be that it is destined for somewhere, that my Muse gave it to me in response for a wish to submit to a particular magazine. I have often thought about submitting to this well established, detective magazine and only recently told myself to go for it.

Maybe later today, I’ll write more, or maybe tomorrow. In the mean time, at least I can make pretty things be.