Monday, November 26, 2012

The End that isn't

I finished the draft of Wharf Rat this evening, finally! It needs some work, mostly because the denouement dragged out way too long. Next week I'll reread the whole thing in one or two sittings so I can get a feel for where the pacing sags. It's only about 72,500 words in all, which is short for a fantasy; I'll probably need to add some scenes and maybe another subplot too.

But for now, I can't stop writing. I still have almost 8,000 words left in order to complete NaNoWriMo. I've opened up the old, neglected Adventures in Zoology to continue writing it. It would be nice if I could finally finish it--I've been meaning to work on it all year, and I even have the rest of it outlined, I just haven't gotten around to it.

Now's my chance!

Monday, November 19, 2012

More pictures of food

If I didn't cook (and didn't have this awesome little camera), I don't know what I'd blog about.

I made these from this recipe, only I added a tsp of almond extract to the dough, and for the filling I mixed about 1/4 c. raspberry jam with about 1/4 c. unsweetened, smooshed-up raspberries (because I wanted these to taste like raspberries instead of jam).

As it happens, I don't much like rosewater. I bought it on impulse last month and found this recipe because I wanted to know what to do with it. It's very strong and perfumey, naturally, but it makes me feel like I'm eating face cream. Next time I make these I might use lemon extract in place of the rosewater.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

1,000 words an hour

Last night was our local NaNoWriMo group's big write-in. We gathered in a big open room in an office building one of our members had arranged for us to borrow; it had lots of tables and power strips and a place to put our food. We all brought food, everything from bags of chips to a honey-baked ham.

I'd signed up to make pumpkin bread, but it was a recipe I hadn't tried before wasn't a success. Obviously. The bottom and sides were overcooked and when I tried to tip the loaf out of the pan, the still-liquid insides puked out. So I stopped at the store on the way and bought a cheese log and Wheat Thins.

We gathered at 5pm and had the building until midnight. Our municipal liaison had a posterboard where we all wrote our names and our word goals for the night, and she had glittery star stickers to put next to our names every time we wrote 500 words. By the end of the night, all the stars were used--and we only had 15 or 16 people there.

I wrote just over 6,000 words, which got me caught up from where I'd been lagging behind on my wordcount. I should reach 30,000 words total today. I also had a good time talking with the other writers, and of course eating like a pig.

It was almost 1 a.m. when I got home. I slept late--until 11 a.m., which is unheard-of for me, but I was short on sleep to start with. Then when I got up, I realized I have galleys to proof for my Etopia book Blood and Ashes, which will be released soon in print. And of course I have to write my daily words.

So I'm going to get right on that, even though I am lacking sausage balls and tortillas with awesome seven-layer dip and leftover Halloween candy (three or four different people brought their leftover Halloween candy). At least I have half a cheese log.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Hurray for my friends! And me

I've been meaning to do a post like this for weeks. So many people I know have books that have either released recently or will be out soon. Here is a big shout-out to as many of them as I remember. If I left anyone out, let me know so I can update.

Cate Gardner has a story in the Circus: Fantasy Under the Big Top anthology! It is sure to be delightfully unsettling.

My Etopia stable-mate Charley Descoteaux has a m/m erotic romance releasing in December, Comfort and Joy, which is probably exactly what you need to get you in the holiday spirit.

Lee Collins' weird western The Dead of Winter just came out from Angry Robot Books. I'm really looking forward to reading this one once NaNoWriMo is over.

Another Angry Robot Lee, Lee Battersby, had his book release a few months ago, The Corpse-Rat King. I've read it and it was great.

Alan W. Davidson has a story in the Friday Flash Vol. II anthology, out now! It looks like a fun collection.

Paula R.C. Readman has a story in the anthology Crime After Crime (US link) which is a collection of crime stories. You probably guessed that, though. It just came out like two days ago.

Carrie Harris also has a just-released YA horror (funny horror not OMG I will never sleep again horror) book out--actually two: Bad Hair Day (sequel to last year's excellent Bad Taste in Boys) and its related e-novella Bad Yeti. I'm going to have a lot of backed-up reading to do after NaNo.

I am remiss in not mentioning this sooner (although my blogging has slowed way down lately), but Conor P. Dempsey's science fiction book The Exiles of the New World was released in April! That cover makes me want to die of love.

Mercedes M. Yardley's horror/dark fantasy short story collection Beautiful Sorrows is available now from Shock Totem. Another cover that makes me want to die, in a good way.

Michael McClung has several books available and I'm embarrassed to say I'm not sure which of his is the latest. I know The Blade That Whispers Hate is available recently although I think it's not the official release--it's mostly for people who just can't wait for it to be out in its final form. But hey, it's free, so if you can't wait....

Whew. I think that's everyone. I need to read faster and also, somehow, blog more at the same time.

Oh, and I shouldn't forget myself. Jack of All Trades has just been re-released by Double Dragon, and it includes the short story "The Neverstone." I've got a Goodreads giveaway running for a copy.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Wow, am I boring

You know what I've done all day? Listened to Pandora Radio and failed to write.

Actually, I did have galleys of The Taste of Magic to proof and return (for the upcoming print edition), which I did. It took me most of the day. And I did go into Knoxville for a local NaNoWriMo write-in, except that the Panera where we were meeting was absolutely packed and I couldn't find our group, so I left again. Then I took a walk since it was almost 75 degrees out. Oh, and I went grocery shopping.

See? Boring.

On the other hand, I've opened up my NaNo file at last and I'm planning to write my way to a scene where our hero is mistaken, due to a complex series of actions he has no control over, for a princess. By the princess's fiance. So I may be boring on the outside, but my brain is busy coming up with cool stuff.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Pix of my new badge (with bonus Jekyll)

I almost forgot I wanted to post a picture of my awesome new Mister Ghost badge that I got from Evil Supply Company. That's why I am wearing my nightgown in the photo; I was too lazy to put a real shirt back on. I wanted to show Jekyll investigating the badge, but he was much more interested in the camera, which is odd because he'd never seen the badge before and I follow him around with the camera like his own personal paparazzi.

Here's the badge a little clearer, but I didn't want to just post this pic because it's mostly of my cleavage. Ooh la la.

I've also ordered some stationery (the Boneyard design), because I could not stop myself.

I followed @EvilSupplyCo on Twitter when I saw a post someone had retweeted. I had to follow them because I have a book called Evil Outfitters, of course, and then I found out they are a real company and I about died of awesome.

This seems like a propitious time to remind everyone that there are only three days left to enter my Goodreads giveaway for a copy of Evil Outfitters, Ltd. AND a copy of the original edition of Jack of All Trades, its companion volume. Jack of All Trades has been reissued by Double Dragon, and I got an email this morning letting me know that it's available now as a print book for anyone who wants the new edition (which includes the short story "The Neverstone").

Sunday, November 4, 2012

First world problems

Mostly, I find writing with an outline helpful. It keeps me from having to stop writing and figure out what comes next and why, and how it should fit into the larger plot.


I knew I didn't have enough plot for Wharf Rat, but I didn't expect what happened yesterday. Three days into NaNo and I slammed to a dead halt. No clue what comes next. I haven't written a word all day. (Tweets don't count.)

The problem is that I wrote a paragraph that would launch a subplot, which I need. Usually when I do that, I can come up with something on the fly, jump right in, and go back later and backfill necessary scenes to make the subplot fit in. But this time...nothing. Crickets. Dog barking in the far distance.

So now it's 9:20 pm and I spent most of the afternoon baking (pumpkin pies that turned out terrible, blueberry tarts that turned out terrible, rice pudding that turned out wonderful thank gawd) and most of the evening browsing membase (which was funny at first and then just depressed me). And I still have to write something.

*drums fingers*

I guess I'd better skip ahead and write a scene I know I'll need. I hate doing that. I feel like I'm cheating.