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Posts Tagged ‘sekrit projekts’

What a difference an empty seat makes

On the way home from World Fantasy tonight, I had the entire row to myself, all three seats, with my husband in the aisle seat across from me. I took advantage of this space not only to sprawl out and read a sizable chunk of Wolf Hall, but also to get some work done: 1500 words on a proposal for a Sekrit Projekt, and another 2300 on “The Unquiet Grave,” whose title has been hacked down to “Unquiet” for the time being. The only reason I didn’t finish was because my computer was almost out of battery and we were about to land anyway; after I got home and ate dinner, I parked my jet-lagged butt in the chair and knocked out the last 200 words.

So that’s a draft! Not necessarily a good one, but it’s easier to fix a story that exists than one that doesn’t. And it’s nice to write something for which I don’t have to do any research whatsoever: things like that are pretty rare for me these days. I’ll let it sit for a bit and then have some friends pull it to pieces, and then — wonder of wonders — I’ll have something new to send out!

Probably couldn’t have done it without those empty seats, though. It’s amazing, what a difference some elbow room makes.

apparently I still have some brain

How excited am I about the project I intend to pitch next to Tor?

Excited enough that I spent part of this afternoon working on the proposal for it, instead of just drooling on myself in a fit of post-novel lethargy. I think that must be a good sign.

Other blogging will return shortly, with fight scene advice, Wheel of Time analysis, and more. But first, I will probably drool on myself for a while.

What happens when I do Fun Work

It’s hard to say how many words I wrote today, since some of it involved replacing a bit of scene I’d written before, but it’s definitely north of 5K.

This is what happens when I let myself work on something other than What I Should Be Working On. (Even if the something else is, technically, also something I should be working on. It ain’t the novel currently under deadline, which is all that really matters.)

Tomorrow, we see if we can’t polish off that nearly-finished short story, and get some other stuff done, too.

Not sure how long I can keep this up . . . .

. . . but it’s good while it lasts. I’ve spent a couple of weeks now bouncing between more narrative projects than I would have thought possible: the Victorian book, a Sekrit Projekt I can’t talk about, “Mad Maudlin” (not done; so close), the revision of “Remembering Light,” and my Scion game. It’s been a pleasant surprise, how much I’ve been able to gear-shift from one to another, but I feel like I’m nearing my limit: the brain can only be flexible for so long. Fortunately, the Sekrit Projekt thing pretty much just needs one more push from me, so if I can knock that and “Remembering Light” off the list I might have enough brainpower for “Mad Maudlin,” and then I’ll be down to two, the Victorian book and the Scion game.

Which is good, because both need a little more attention than I’ve been able to give them. I do want to get moving on another short story once “Mad Maudlin” is done, but I think it’s going to be a new draft of “On the Feast of the Firewife,” which will take less brainpower than a full-blown new story. I’ve figure out what I want to do with it; now it just wants doing.

talk about misplaced effort

Dear Brain,

Did we really need to run upstairs so as to type out 563 words belonging to the third book of a trilogy for which we have not yet written the first book?

Did we really?

I mean, what you interrupted was the cleaning of the living room, so it’s no big loss, but still. Devoting that energy in a slightly more productive direction would be appreciated.

Thanks in advance,


I wrote 5,661 words today on the Silly Project.

If I kept that up for the rest of the month, I could finish NaNoWriMo in a third the time.

(This is not going to happen.)


On the one hand, this is so not remotely any of the projects I intended to be working on right now.

On the other hand, it’s 3,854 words so far today, and I’m having fun; which is worth something all on its own.

State of the Swan

I don’t have to report for jury duty today — yay! So here’s an update on where I stand work-wise, in the wake of the India trip and A Star Shall Fall.

1) I do, of course, have to deal with copy-edits and page proofs for Star. Not sure yet when those will show up, though, so for the time being that work is in limbo.

2) Next after that one is the Victorian book. Due to the vagaries of my last few years, this, the fourth Onyx Court novel, will be the first one where I’ve had more than a month or two of lead time in which to do my research before I put words on the page. You have no idea how wonderful that feels. In order to give myself more time for the actual drafting, I plan to start that at the beginning of April, but that still leaves me five months for a leisurely, low-pressure campaign of prep reading. Look for various “help me o internets” posts as I figure out what I want to pick up first.

3) Writing full-time means I need to hold myself to a higher standard of productivity than I did while teaching or taking classes. Ergo, I’m also starting work on a pure spec project. For those not familiar with the term, writing “on spec,” i.e. “on speculation,” means you’re doing it on your own time, without a contract promising money when you’re done. This project, code-named TLT, is a just-for-me novel; if I don’t finish it, or if I do finish it and then decide it isn’t really for publication, then that’s okay. I’m doing it because I want to, because I think it’ll be fun. And “having fun” is an important part of this job, for the preservation of sanity. Anyway, the plan for this is to aim for 5K a week, with weekends off, and if I don’t make my goal then I won’t beat myself up over it.

4) I also have another sekrit projekt on the back burner, code-named FY. No wordcount goals for this one; I just want to play around with it and see what happens.

5) Short stories. I’m beginning to accept that short stories aren’t likely to happen while I’m drafting Onyx Court books, but the result is that my pipeline of stories has gotten fairly empty at every stage — very few upcoming publications, because very few sales, because very few submissions, because very few stories prepared, because very few stories awaiting revision. Between now and April, I’d like to make some progress in fixing that. The tentative goal is to finish both Edward’s untitled story and “Serpent, Wolf, and Half-Dead Thing” before the end of the month; we’ll see if I can manage it or not.

Now I head up to the city for errands and the Borderlands signing tonight. India pictures later — hopefully tonight or tomorrow.