Tag Archives: WIP

Wednesday’s Writing Stuff

Exciting title, no? It’s been kind of a crazy week, I’m a little off-kilter, and that’s actually the best I can do.

Quick update:

  • Torn is off for copy edits and proofreading, which means I have a few weeks to freak out get back into revisions on book three, which needs some adjustments after Torn‘s big edits (and just because I’ve come up with a few ways to give the story a more satisfying conclusion).
  • We had the cover reveal for Torn on Monday. Big thanks again to everyone who helped out by sharing or posting the reveal on your blogs! It made it a great party.
  • torn_full

    So pretty!

  • Pre-orders are up, too. It feels like this is really the point of no return, but I… *looks over shoulder, whispers* I feel good about the timing on this. Still releasing in March (31st), but leaving time in case things go wrong.
  • And Bound is on sale for 99 cents this week, in case anyone missed THAT on Monday, as well.

 

WIPpet Wednesday

I guess we only have a few weeks left when I can call Torn a work in progress.

Holy carp.

As always, potential spoilers ahead. I’m trying not to give away twists or surprises (or the main plot), but if you’ve read Bound, you might guess who’s being described here.

And be happy. I can’t be held responsible for that.

2 paragraphs from chapter 25 for 2/25, from the mysterious 3rd character’s POV. She’s just met some strangers, and isn’t feeling particularly warm toward them.

I guess you’ll meet her when we do the prologue reveal in a few weeks… 😀

One look at him told me I had better not let my guard down. It would be far too easy to be overcome by his obvious charm. Skin the same color as the woman’s, eyes like the depths of a lake on a summer day, black hair that he brushed back from his face in a gesture that was somehow bashful and self-confident at the same time. His smile revealed the hint of a shallow dimple at the corner of his mouth. I glanced lower, taking in the challenge. Broad shoulders, a muscular body obvious even under layers of clothing. Big hands with long fingers gripped the reins in an awkward hold.

I’d always had a weakness for beauty. We saw so little of it in Cressia.

Hmm…

For more WIPpet Wednesday, click here. The WIPpeteers (including our host, KL Schwengel) post snippets of works in progress every Wednesday, and it’s always fun to see what they’re up to. The only rule is that the snippet has to relate in some way to the calendar date. If you think that sounds like a good time, jump in on your own blog! We don’t bite.

Hard.

 

 

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Writing Stuff Wednesday: Insert Interesting Title Here

Yeah, sorry. I don’t have time for a clever title, or to dig deep into all of these cool new scenes to find something fantastic for WIPpet Wednesday.

But since you stopped by… 2 lines of dialogue for the 2 in the date. No context. Just two characters in a life or death situation. No big deal.

“Pathetic as it sounds, you’re the only family I have, and those two are my only friends. I can’t let you all wander off to your deaths without at least joining in, can I?”

“At least you won’t be lonely.”

If you want to see what the WIPpeteers are up to, here’s the link. I hope I’ll get around to everyone this week… I think I managed it last time. I couldn’t comment on everyone’s, though. THANKS, BLOGGER. I did read, though!

 -_-

 

ROW80 UPDATE: TORN

Things are progressing well with this round of edits on Torn. I have one chapter left to completely re-write, one in which I only have to re-write the second half, and one that only needs partial re-writes.

Those climaxes, man. They get me every time.

I was hoping to get that done this week…

But this weather is killing me. I’ve got a migraine today, but am working through it (God help my characters!). The kids were home for another snow day yesterday, and their dad is away for training this week. The boys are old enough that they can play by themselves or go outside when the storms calm down, but I still can’t close myself off, stick my headphones on, and work while they’re around. I have to be listening, and available. They want me to do crazy things like play with them.

I try to remind myself that this is how I wrote the first draft of Bound, but it doesn’t help. That draft sucked. These scenes aren’t allowed to.

And then there’s Bruno, who I have decided is not, in fact, a Chihuahua, but a Mexican Bed Hound. I’m not getting much sleep with him curled up between my knees–between not being able to move and being worried that he’s going to suffocate under the blankets, I’m waking up exhausted.

IMG_7288

But if I shut him out, he cries. And my husband gives me sad eyes.*

I need more coffee. And a plan.

In case anyone’s wondering what the months before my book release look like, here’s the goal, with dates removed–because things go awry. Snow days happen. Editors get sick, or have other clients put them off schedule, or hey, they have personal lives. Beta readers take longer than anticipated, though no fault of their own. I get sick, or get headaches, and until I’m making more money than my husband**, I’m responsible for this household: laundry, getting the kids to school, cooking, cleaning.

I need a housewife, is what I need.

But here’s the plan:

  •  finish rewrites
  • compile notes
  •  final clean-up pass (will take about a week, I hope, and will involve reading aloud, making the prose read more gooder better, adding in a few ideas I’ve had along the way, and really taking it from a solid story to a beautiful reading experience. In theory).
  • Send to second-round beta readers, hope they can get it back in a week.
  •  write cover copy.
  •  Set up pre-orders.
  •  Figure out whether I can format the paperback through Scrivener (wasn’t an option in the PC version… we’ll see)
  •  cover reveal. Pre-orders. Other fun stuff!
  •  newsletters
  •  fix whatever my lovely betas say I screwed up
  •  send for proofreading/copy edits (2 weeks)
  •  Prologue reveal (not to be disregarded, thanks)
  •  formatting
  •  final version to Amazon (10 days pre-release)
  •  teaser photos
  •  relax and/or freak out and/or get back to work on book 3
  •  upload to other vendors
  •  RELEASE DAY. Party on Facebook.

And then REALLY get back to work on book three, because I’ve had some ideas for big, scary revisions.

So… yep. That’s the plan. Please cross your fingers, toes, and anything else you can spare that I can get this all done soon!

For more about ROW80, click here. For more updates from other participants… um… I’ll add the link when I find it.

Thanks for stopping by! Hope you’re all having a fantastic week (and staying warm, if applicable).

—-

 

*Not this week, but there’s still the crying.

**Okay, even then, it would still be my job, because I work from home.


WIPpet Wednesday – Awkward Spoiler Avoidance Edition (and a lesson learned)

WIP it… (duh nuh nuh nuh)… W-WIP it real good!

Sorry, I was tired of getting Devo stuck in my head every time WIPpet Wednesday rolled around. Thought I’d try Salt n’ Peppa. You know, instead of “Push It”.

It’s not actually better. Live and learn. *sigh*

WIPpet Wednesday is the day where we post a snippet from a work in progress that relates in some way to the day’s date. I’ve been having a lot of trouble participating lately, because a) I’m busy, and I don’t post if I know I can’t get around to comment (though I sometimes miss a few who post late–sorry! I’ll try harder!), and b) I’m seriously running out of spoiler-free snippets from Torn.

Like… even saying who’s in it is a spoiler, aside from the obvious suspects.

So here’s what we’re going to do. I’m going to share a big snippet, and I’m not going to say who’s in it. The POV character (herein referred to as “I”) is female and a Potioner, and that’s all I’m saying. The other party in the conversation is a dude, and… we’ll call him Y here.

Warning: If you’ve read Bound and really don’t want to know whether certain species are going to show up again, skip it. You’ll probably guess. I doubt anyone will be disappointed, but there you have it. 🙂

Okay, it’s super obvious. Just don’t say I didn’t warn you.

19 (short) paragraphs. WIPpet math: 1+1+8+2+0+1+5 = 18, plus one to grow on.

I’d only need one more ingredient. I brought out one of the daggers that my unfortunate soldier friend had left behind.

“Can I help?” Y’s voice drifted from the trees behind me.

“You’re getting quieter,” I observed. “I barely heard you coming.”

Y stood up straighter. “I’m working on it. I don’t think I’ll ever be as graceful on land as I am in [awkward redaction], though. What are you doing?”

“Trying to be prepared. You might not want to see this.”

The shadows covered much of his face, but I caught the concerned furrow of his brow. “Do you want me to leave? Whatever it is, I can handle it.”

The firm set of his jaw and the look in his eyes told me he wasn’t lying. I wondered what he’d seen in his life. Such a strange man. I couldn’t deny I was glad to have his assistance, and his company. Something about him calmed my mind, even as his presence tended to do the opposite to my body. I could ignore that, though.

“You can stay, if you want to,” I said. “Hold the bowl for me.”

He stepped into the clearing and cupped the bowl in his hands, holding it out from his body. “Like this?”

“Perfect.” I slipped off my cloak, then tried to roll up my sleeves. They were too tight. The whole thing would have to go. I thought about asking Y to close his eyes. We didn’t need to complicate things further.

Don’t be silly, I told myself. You’re both adults. He’s seen more, and probably prettier.

Y’s eyes widened as I unbuttoned my shirt, then swallowed hard as I slipped it off, leaving me in a thin under-shirt in the cold woods.

I waited for his gaze to return to mine. “Don’t [oh, so very redacted] go around naked most of the time?”

“Yes.”

I raised my eyebrows, and fought back a smile when his eyes wandered again.

“It’s just different with you,” he said. “It’s fine. Carry on. Please.”

I took a deep breath and traced the tip of the dagger over the skin of my arm, trying to decide on the best spot to get what I needed while doing the smallest possible amount of damage. I settled on the top of my forearm and stroked the tip of the dagger gently over my skin once, twice, three times, building my nerve.

“Use my blood, if you want,” Y said.

“No. Thank you. I’ve had worse injuries.”

“So have I.”

Well, my work here is done. Smoothly done, Sparkes. SMOOOOTHLY DONE.

O.o

For more and probably less awkward WIPpet Wednesday fun, scoot on over here to the linkie, and feel free to join in on your own blog. Thanks to KL Schwengel for hosting!

But seriously, guys, I think I’m out for a few weeks.

ROW80 Update

On the only goal that matters at the moment: Still editing. I think I have about eight chapters left to go, only two of which are full rewrites.

*cough*

Yes, it makes things harder. Yes, it’s more work than I thought I’d be doing two months shy of the projected publication date. It’s going to be worth it, though.

I’m done stressing about dates. Some people might be irritated if things are delayed by a week, but once the book’s out, no one will care. As I’ve said before, I’m not half-assing anything to meet a deadline.

My readers deserve my best. No shortcuts.

For the record, there will be no promises, speculation, or hints about the next book’s release date until after edits (professional, not self-edits). We’re looking at the same kind of space between books as we were this time, but beyond that, my lips are sealed.

Having a deadline is motivating, but it’s useless when it stresses you out too much to do anything.

Consider that a lesson learned.

ROW80 posts or to learn about the event, click here

 


WIPpet Wednesday: All Trussed Up and No Place to Go

So… yeah. This character and I are getting along famously. I don’t know whether anyone else will love her as much as I do, but things are just peachy.

I mean, the plot needs work, but the character is there.

Catalen is at a wealthy person’s house, and someone’s been getting her dressed up for a fancy dinner. Cat is a little out of her element, but she handles these things pretty well. At least, she has so far. She’s on a mission, and her self-confidence has yet to take a beating.

WIPpet math: 2 + 6 + 1 + 1=10 sentences. First draft warnings apply.

By the time Madam Hat is done with me, I’m trussed up like a hen ready for roasting. My waist looks waspish under this striped blue corset, and my tits are squished nearly up to my chin. I could eat off of them. I swear there’s room to balance a plate, maybe a cup and some cutlery.

But when I look in the mirror, I realize that I’m the one who looks like a feast. The full blue skirt puffs out so you can’t tell what’s dress and what’s me, and it’s long enough that I seem to be floating when I tiptoe across the floor. I’m all curves in this thing—not that I wasn’t damn fetching before, but now I look like the girls in movies.

Feck that. I look better than them. Definitely more fun and more capable, and less likely to blow away in a stiff breeze.

You know what they say goeth before a fall, right? We’ll just leave her to enjoy this moment for now.

For more WIPpet Wednesday fun, click here. If you want to join in, the only rule is that you post a snippet from a current work in progress that relates in some way to today’s date. And it’s not a rule, but being a good neighbour is encouraged. Get out there, read some! Comment some! We all love it, and tend to return the favour.  🙂

Many thanks as always to the Flying Monkey-Master (or is that Flying-Monkey Master?) KL Schwengel, who hosts WIPpet Wednesday every week.

ROW80 UPDATE

Okay. I’m still trying to win NaNoWriMo, because all of my friends are getting pretty dragon badges, and I WANT ONE.

It’s the little things, you know?

So here’s the plan. If I can write 5,000 words today and 5,000 tomorrow, I’ll have done it. Three separate projects this month, but 50,000 new words. I’m not going to have access to my computer(s) after tomorrow, so this is it.

Wish me luck.

Oh, and as far as goals after that go… I do have this Bound-related short story back from my editor that I’d love to share with you all before Torn comes out, but I haven’t even read over the notes/corrections yet. So I guess that’s what comes next.

Other updates:

Reading— I did some this week! I read Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking* by Malcolm Gladwell, and it was fascinating. I read that thing in less than 24 hours. These days, most books take me weeks. Interesting information, and well-written. I’ll be looking for more of his stuff.

I also finished Broken Aro (The Broken Ones Book 1)* by Jen Wylie just last night. I enjoyed this book, too, and look forward to seeing what happens as the characters’ adventures continue.

It’s never too late to join in on ROW80 if you feel the need for some creative accountability. Here’s the link.

Thanks for stopping by! I hope you’re having a great Wednesday, whatever you’re up to.

*Affiliate links. These cost you nothing extra, but if you buy after clicking, they help me out. I feel skeevy not mentioning it, though…


WIPpet Wednesday: Not Even Here Edition

That’s right, I’m not here. I mean, I am… but I’m not at home. I’m still going to try to get to everyone’s posts this week. I got through 16 last week before things got crazy. I’m going to try for everyone this time, even if it takes all week.

So where am I? Halfway across the province, visiting my parents so I can a) visit my parents, and b) sign the books they’re taking with them when they go to visit the rest of the family in Ontario next month.

books

Bad lighting = bad picture. Sorry.

I’m still waiting on most of my order from CreateSpace, but Amazon got other people’s orders to them quickly, so that’s fine. JUST FINE. -_- *

Turns out signing books is awkward. I don’t know what to write. And now I’ve learned that “personalized” doesn’t mean that I lick the spine to mark the book as my territory.

Someone should really get this information out there.

TO THE WIPPETORIUM!

Okay, math… Today is the 23rd. 2+3=5 paragraphs from the scene I was working on a few nights ago. We’re back to Rowan and Aren here (yay!), and she’s referring to someone who readers should recognize from the end of book one who’s not a big fan of Aren.

Man, it’s hard to not be spoilery. -_-

This is mid-scene. I just completely re-wrote this, so it’s a little rough. Aren’s POV, starts with Rowan speaking.

 

“She’s warming to you.”

I snorted. “You’re the second person who’s tried to tell me that, and I’m no closer to believing it than I was months ago.”

“It’s true. She doesn’t speak badly of you any more. I don’t think she’s forgiven you for things that happened in the past, but she finds you useful, and I think she’s stopped worrying about you using certain talents.”

“That really doesn’t make me feel better. A young dragon is less fearsome if its fire is doused and its teeth pulled, but then what does it have left?”

“You still have your claws.” She stood and pressed her body against mine, flashing that wicked little grin that always set my blood surging. I rested my hand on her hip and gripped the fabric of her cloak. It slid without resistance against the smooth skin beneath. “I like your claws.”

For anyone not in the know, WIPpet Wednesday is when we share a short snippet from a work in progress that relates to the day’s date. If you’d like to join in at your own blog space with 23 lines from chapter 7, seven paragraphs from page 23, or whatever else you’d like to work out, have at it! Link up here, and be sure to stop in and say hi at everyone else’s blogs. Thanks to monkey mistress KL Schwengel for hosting.

 

*One of my boxes finally came yesterday, over a week late. Still waiting on most of the order. But I will say that CreateSpace customer service was amazing once I got past my phone-related anxiety and called them. If you ever call and talk to Jeimy, be nice. She’s swell. And anyone who’s waiting on signed copies… I’m sorry. We’re working on it.


Wednesday Shenanigans

It looks like it’s Wednesday again! For anyone just joining us (hello, there!), this means two things: a ROW80 update, and WIPpet Wednesday. Both are blog events that are open to all. One’s a great help for procuctivity/accountability (both of which I’m in desperate need of at the moment), and one is just buckets of fun.

Let’s start with the fun, shall we?

WIPpet Wednesday

Let’s see… math. WIPpet Wednesday is when we share a snippet of a work in progress that relates somehow to the day’s date. I have to be careful about what I share right now (spoilers!), but I think I’ve got something that will work, if I can make it fit…

I’m taking the 16th and chopping it in half… because this is from book 2 of the Bound Trilogy, and because I said so. I’ve been teasing a little with short WIPpets lately, so here’s something a little longer. Eight paragraphs.

This character was abducted (well… more like conscripted) by a group of soldiers, and while she was trying to figure out how to escape, someone set off a dragon flare in the woods that attracted a big, flying fire-breather. It helped her escape, but she’s none too pleased with the methods these strangers used to rescue her…

 

“That was incredibly stupid,” I said to the three of them, who had just caught up with me. The woman led them, a stunning creature with clear skin the color of my morning’s tea with just a drop or two of cream in it. She didn’t speak, but kept her gray-green eyes trained on me without fear or concern for propriety. A huntress, and certainly not from the northern provinces.

I slowed my horse to a walk and patted his neck. He was beautiful, a fine traveling companion and better quality than any nag we’d had when I was growing up. The woman rode ahead of me, the men behind. “Did you not know what that stick was before you lit it?” I asked. “Or was it your mission to kill us all?”

My voice remained smooth and level, though inwardly I trembled with apprehension. The soldiers had been bad, but at least I knew what they wanted.

One of the men rode up beside me. He appeared healthy, in spite of his pale complexion, and was handsome enough in a pampered sort of way. Not someone who spent his life toiling outdoors, then. But he appeared strong, if lean, and rode with the same proper form as the soldiers. He could have been one of them, had he the right weapons and uniform. “We knew what it was,” he said. “We needed a distraction.”

“I’d say you got what you wanted, then.” I let out a little laugh, as though the whole situation amused me. Best to not show fear, or how frustrated I was becoming with the whole damned day.

He glared at me. “It worked. I don’t see any ropes binding your wrists or soldiers chasing you.”

He seemed to expect some show of gratitude. I wasn’t going to show anything until I found out what he and his friends wanted with me. People don’t try to help unless they want something. “I would have been fine without you. I’m quite capable of handling myself.”

The muscles in his firm jaw clenched as he gritted his teeth. May a windwyvern piss on my head if you ever find me a joy to converse with, I thought. His very presence irritated me for reasons that seemed just beyond my mind’s reach.

 

Ho-ho.

*cracks knuckles*

Check out what the rest of the WIPpeteers are up to here, and if you have a blog and a work in progress, join in! Super special thanks to KL Schwengel for hosting.

ROW80 Update

A Round of Words in 80 Days is a writing challenge that lets you set your own goals. I set mine here. Time to check in.

I stalled for a few days, but I think I’ve figured out what the problem was. Sometimes a scene is intimidating because it has to do so much, and it has to make it all look effortless. I’m working on one of those scenes right now. Planning is what I needed, and it’s what I’m doing.

It’s gonna be goooood. There were a few hiccups in the last draft, a few things that fell flat or might have disappointed people, but I’m SO ON IT NOW.

So the goals have not changed. Third draft revisions on Torn continue. Time is the biggest challenge right now. I need to average two scenes a day if I’m going to have this thing ready to go to beta readers in September, and right now that’s just not happening. Most scenes need partial or full rewrites, and between the kids being home and… well, the kids being home, I’m not getting the time I need.

Still working on the whole “getting up early” thing. I slept right through my alarm this morning because the fan drowned it out. Note to self: turn up the ringer volume on the my phone tonight.

Going to try for a few hours this afternoon if I can find something to keep the boys occupied, and I AM going to get up and work tomorrow.

Just need to get that momentum going again.

(And guys? This one’s going to be so good…)


Quick WIPpet

Well, this is awkward. I have to worry about cross-book spoilers now.

But it is WIPpet Wednesday, and now that launch day business is done with, I should get back to it.

What is WIPpet Wednesday? It’s the day when a bunch of fun and fantastic writers working in a variety of genres post a snippet from a work in progress that relates in some way to the day’s date. We link back, we comment on each other’s stuff, a good time is had by all.

Feel free to jump in by posting on your own blog and linking!

Okay, for July 9, nine lines (on my screen in Scrivener, anyway) from the scene I was working on last night. I’m not going to identify the speaker, because then I’d have to explain things. But some of you already know Kel.

Just a draft, not edited, not great yet, needs to be filled in, yadda yadda…

Kel turned away. “No, I suppose it’s not. I just wanted you to know that I’m a little different. I wouldn’t mind trying the love thing some day. You don’t want that, and that’s okay. I like you. I’d like to be friends with you. That’s why I’m not trying to overcome your defenses with my irresistible charms.”

I snorted. “You’re adorable, but I think I’m safe.”

He stepped in front of me, stopping me short. A smile twitched at his lips. He raised one hand and brushed my hair back. My mouth went dry as he trailed a finger down my jaw line from ear to chin, barely grazing my skin. The meadow seemed to disappear, shrinking the world to the size of the space between us. His eyes filled with undisguised desire, and my body responded in kind.

Before I could say anything else, he walked away. “We should go,” he called over his shoulder.

“Be right there,” I whispered. He seemed to have taken my voice with him.

Not their first flirtation (she’s seen him naked… um, kind of), but I like this moment.

So there you go. I’m back. No guarantees that I’ll be here every week, and I’m going to have to spread out my visits this week because NO TIME, but this is a thing and I did it. So there.

To see what the other WIPpeteers are up to, click here!

And thanks as always to our host K L Schwengel, she of the flying monkeys and book that I wish was out already because I’m impatient. 🙂

 

ROW80 Update

‘s going good. Gotta go.

 

 


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