I’ve hit a wall. Well, sort of. I got to about 235,000 words in my Emo Space Dudes story and realized that I’ve kind of painted myself into a corner with part of the plot. I’m still pretty excited about the story overall, though.

I sent it to a beta reader, so I’ll see what happens. In the meantime, I’ve been watching/reading a whole bunch of really disparate things and they’re all starting to mush together in the back of my head, hooray!

And that’s about all the excitement that is exciting, other than someone just brought me dinner. Yum!

225K Down!

I’m closing in on a quarter of a million words in one document. More specifically, one story.

I have no idea how it happened, but there we are.

I think I’m going to need to send it to a beta-reader sooner rather than later, because I’m not sure if I want to keep certain parts of it. I’m pretty happy with it over all, honestly.

It’d be nice to have an actual title, or even just a working title.

As of 10:12 PM PST, on August 13, 2017…

I have reached 200,000 words in the first draft of whatever this is that I’m writing.

Two. Hundred. Thousand. Words.

It’s not done.
I don’t know what I’m doing.
I don’t even have a clue as to what it might end up as.

But you know what? I don’t care.

I’m just going along with it and I’m letting it happen. It’s only the first draft. It’s okay if it’s not perfect when I get to the end, because I can fix it.

Onward to 225K!

So. I kind of fell off the face of the earth.

Sorry about that.

I don’t even really have a good explanation of where I’ve been for the last two years, either. I’ve still been writing, and I’ve been doing all right in terms of my mental health, but blogging just kind of took a back seat to everything else that was going on in my life.

One of the most notable things that I’ve done in the recent past is that I finished A Reading From The Epistles! And then I went looking for a refresher on submitting things and discovered that my publisher has shifted their focus to pretty much contemporaries and contemporaries only. I’m not going to get into specifics about how I feel about that, because I honestly do still love them, but I am needless to say rather disappointed.

Of course, when you take three years to get off your ass and finish a story instead of the six or so months it should have taken, you really only have yourself to blame when you’re blindsided by things like that. (In other words: It’s my own damn fault, so I should pretty much suck it up.) On the other hand, when the rights to ILLUMETH come back to me, I’m basically in a place where I can combine the two of them to make a short novel.

Speaking of novels! I’m currently working on a story about Emo Space Dudes Being Emo In Spaaaaaace, and I’m closing in on 195,000 words. Yes, one hundred ninety-five thousand words. And I’m not done! There are still holes in it where I have literally written [This is where the explanation of (event) goes, just as soon as I figure it out and write it down.], among other things.

In addition to the amazing word count (because I don’t write novels, that’s what actual novelists do! I write weird little novellas about weird people!), the story is written in a linear fashion, where Event A leads to Event B leads to Event C, naturally and organically; it’s written basically in chronological order, where I wrote Event B between Event A and Event C instead of writing Event G, Event Y, Event B, then going back and wedging Events A and C in where they go; and I’ve avoided using massive time-skips in order to either avoid the boring but important stuff or to get to the fun stuff faster.

This is a first for me. I’ve got a couple of stories that have broken the 100K mark, but they’re all messes — huge holes, huge leaps of months or even years, scenes out of order, etc. This story is–well, it’s still a first draft, so it’s not in any kind of shape to be submitted, but it’s far closer to it than the rest of the long stories I’ve worked on.

I’m not entirely sure how I’m going to end it, though, given the protagonists I’ve set up. I have a few options, and I’ll see how things shake out when I get there. I also need a title, because while my working title of ‘Emo Space Dudes’ is descriptive (and probably pretty memorable), it’s not exactly, ah… Marketing friendly? Or entirely accurate, since they do more than sit around and whinge about how terrible their lives are because [reasons]. (And they have good reasons to be sad about their lives, but they’re working diligently to cope with/move beyond their issues.)

In other news: we moved, Mr. Hairy The Cat passed away, I got a new-to-me car, I got a new dog-walking client that has me walking an average of about four miles a week, my brother moved in with his girlfriend, my Unofficial Nieces are going into the fifth and fourth grades respectively, and we finally had a proper winter with plenty of snow instead of *snow that melts and freezes into ice followed by freezing rain that freezes into ice followed by a thaw and then more snow that melts and freezes into ice, repeat from * until spring. But climate change isn’t real.

That’s about all the news that is news around here. Hope you’ve all been well!

The Joys Of Being Dyslexic…

My particular form of dyslexia manifests itself in transpositions, combining words from two different sentences, and occasionally missing important bits of sentences.

For instance, I may go read the excerpt for I Lift Up My Eyes To The Hills and miss two words and one of the commas setting off the appositive in the opening sentence and nearly call someone in the middle of the night.

What I initially read:

BROTHER EZEKIEL Frost surveyed the knot of new journeymen awaiting assignment with a decided lack of enthusiasm, which of them was to be his new assistant.

I decided I would reread it very slowly and carefully to make sure that I had my facts straight before I went off to calmly scream at someone about it.

What it actually said:

BROTHER EZEKIEL Frost surveyed the knot of new journeymen awaiting assignment and wondered, with a decided lack of enthusiasm, which of them was to be his new assistant.

Needless to say, I was utterly relieved to discover that it was just me not paying attention and not some sort of bizarre error in the actual manuscript.

By the way, it’s November third. That means you can get your copy of ILUMETTH now! Also, I’ll be hanging out at Dreamspinner’s blog from 11 AM to 9 PM Eastern, talking about some of the stuff that went into the making of the story.

Mark Your Calenders: November 3rd, 2014!

That’s the day that I Lift Up My Eyes To The Hills will be available for purchase. You can buy it from Dreamspinner, of course, or you can grab it from your favorite 3rd-party distributor.

Here’s the blurb:

Justinian Clark, new-minted journeyman scribe, has a lot of faith: faith in God goes without saying, faith in the orderly workings of the universe, faith in the administrative minutiae that ticks along in the background of his life. That minutiae has brought him to Saint Gabriel and All Angels Cathedral, where he is assigned to assist Brother Ezekiel Frost.

Ezekiel Frost, a ten-year veteran of The Eternal Brotherhood of the Guardians of the Church of Greater Anglia, is quite comfortable with his routine: helping the people of St. Gabriel’s parish, annoying the archdeacon, and not getting too used to his assistants. While he doubts that having a complete novice assigned to him will change this pattern in any way, he resolves to make the best of it.

Between exorcisms, murders, the attention of something, and an overly observant child, Justinian and Ezekiel have no time to settle into a comfortable routine. Nothing is as certain as they once believed, and they can only hope their faith will see them through.

Yaaaaaay! Also eeeeek. But mostly yaaaaaaay!

The Sequence Alt I M Is Your Best Friend While Editing.

So DSP has this editing policy: absolutely no in-line comments. All comments are to be made using the ‘insert comment’ feature of Word. I was happy enough to comply, since it was less confusing for me all the way around… But the report of Anthony Horowitz’s in-line comments getting published in some ARCs highlights just why DSP makes that demand.

I work hard to make sure that my editors and I aren’t at odds, so I doubt that having my/our comments would really be all that exciting, but I’m just as glad that the issue is unlikely to arise.



That’s it. If there’s anything that needs fixing, it’s too late. (True story: I had to get someone else to read the galley for me because I had been looking at it for so long that my eyes were crossing.)

When I have a release date, I’ll post it everywhere. For now, though, it looks like “sometime in November”. Works for me!

I’m going to do a release party thing on the Dreamspinner blog, so that should be interesting; I’ll also be writing a post for Guys Like Romance Too (but that won’t be published until…December.) I’ll have more info on that as I get it, so. (Topics I’m planning on covering: music, the rosary/Book of Common Prayer, possibly/probably the setting, and I don’t know what else.)

…That’s about all the news I’ve got for the moment.

I was told I can share this, so I’m going to.

Yes, those are all Justinian-related items.

Isn’t it lovely?

John Coulthart patiently took all of the bits and bobs I plucked out of the lint trap of my brain and turned them into this gorgeous cover.

I don’t have a release date, yet, but probably in time for the holiday season.