Tag Archives: writing

Challenge: Write 500 Words a Day

Just a quick note here to let y’all know I’m still here.

Plugging away after life threw me a couple curve balls — our Raleigh office closed in April, and they let go pretty much everyone at the office, including me.

So I’ve been job-hunting and networking like a champ since then, which becomes a bit draining after a while. You look at all the jobs, try to narrow them down, and then fill out the online application (some of which can be long and tedious), add a resume and custom cover letter, and hope for the best. Then you start to worry you’re missing the perfect job, so you keep hunting. It becomes a vicious cycle.

But I’ve got some leads, and while I got sidetracked by a job that I (and one of my potential bosses) thought was all but wrapped up in late May, and I’m feeling good about the prospects.

What I haven’t been doing is writing fiction. I tried to keep up with the novel in April after the lay-off, then by May I was knee-deep in job applications and creating some (pretty awesome, if I say so myself) writing samples for potential jobs. But I wasn’t working on my novel.

June 15, 2015 progress
So nice to see this finally move off the 27,000-word mark where it had been stuck for about a month!

I wrote all of 1,800 words on my current novel in May. That’s just 6 pages. In a month. Bleh.

So for my birthday I decided to challenge myself: I will write 500 words a day, minimum, every day.

If this is my dream — to be a full-time fiction writer — then I need to keep on writing, despite what distractions are going on in my world.

The tentative cover to Hunter's Moon!
Tentative cover to Hunter’s Moon

On Saturday, my birthday, I got up early and got back in touch with my characters in Hunter’s Moon, the sequel to my novel Family, Pack.

And I wrote about 600 words. Sunday I wrote about 700 more. And yesterday, even though it was a crazy day, I squeezed in another 600 words (a car chase scene, woo!).

Which leaves me with today. I just wrote about 350 words on this blog post, which could’ve been used on my novel — I could’ve finished up that car chase. What was I thinking?

And so the challenge continues! Wish me luck, and thanks for reading!

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Half a Decade from the Master Class

From October 3rd to October 17th, 2009, I attended a Fiction Writing Master Class with a dozen other writers. We had hours of classes every day, assignments every night, and we wrote. A lot. I came away with three complete stories, pages of notes, and ideas for at least a dozen novels.

I also learned a ton about publishing, and that led to all of my adventures in indie publishing with UnWrecked Press. Definitely a life-changing experience (and I even had to miss the wedding of two of my friends to attend it, so I knew I had to make the most out of every minute).

Looking a bit smug there, aren't we, Mr. Sunglasses?
Looking a bit smug there, aren’t we, Mr. Sunglasses?

So what have I done since my return from that Master Class workshop in mid-October 2009?

What have I accomplished in the past 5 years?

One thing I did was make ebooks. Lots of ebooks – close to a hundred! I did one short-story-as-ebook a week for the entire year of 2011 (that was kind of ambitious, eh?).

And I learned how to create print-on-demand books.

And I found narrators to make audiobooks out of three of my novels and one short story, which was a fun exercise. I’d love to do more, and maybe even narrate one myself.

Oh, and I started my own publishing company. With its own website and online store. Check out our Catalog!

As for actual WRITING, well… (continue reading if you like minutiae!)

Continue reading Half a Decade from the Master Class

The Finder Team: Take 2

For the past month now, I’ve been getting up early to work on my new mystery novel that has a splash of the supernatural in it.

Well, I was plugging away on the book, that is, until 1) I got a nasty cold, and 2) we had family visit and I got knocked off schedule.  But I’d planned for the second option (and we had a great visit with family from in and out of state), and my plan is to be up and running again tomorrow. Typing away in the early hours as usual…

One thing I did in some of my downtime in the past few weeks was work on a couple of covers for the new book, which is still called The Finder Team.

I’d love to get your thoughts on which cover you prefer, so here are your two options (click on a cover to see a bigger version):

NOTE: The first five people to comment with their preferred cover either here or on the UnWrecked Press Facebook page get a coupon code for a free ebook from the UnWrecked Press store! Thanks for your help!

Continue reading The Finder Team: Take 2

Screenplay Achieved!

Cross another item off my Bucket List. I finished my screenplay this morning!

Unassisted Living Page 1It’s right about the length I planned it to be (113 pages, or a one hour, 53 minute movie, and around 26,000 words). All told, it took me three and a half months to write, but about 60 hours total spread out over those months.

But, more importantly — what’s the screenplay ABOUT?

First off, it’s called UNASSISTED LIVING.

Continue reading Screenplay Achieved!

My August Challenge: Finish writing a screenplay…!

Sharp-eyed readers of this blog and website may have noticed some movement in my “2013 Word Count Goal” over there in the right-hand sidebar. Yep, I’m getting some writing done again — new words! It feels GREAT.

My current project is a new one for me. Instead of a novel or story, I’m writing a screenplay.

I think I’ve got the basics of the formatting down (I’ve been reading a lot of screenplays from the IMSDb and raiding the library of veteran screenwriter John August for assistance, as well as reviewing the latest version of Screenplay on my Kindle). Luckily I have some experience with the odd formatting of screenplays from my work on the script for our digital comic a few years.

But screenplays, yeah… They can be a bit weird to draft.

Image by orchid | morgueFile
Image by orchid | morgueFile

I figure I can go back and fix the formatting issues later. Right now I’m just chugging through the story. Getting the dialog down, letting the characters get into trouble, keeping up with the action, and so on. Figuring it out as I go.

And I’ve been having a blast. So much so that I want to keep at it. And that’s why I’m going to push myself.

As a writing challenge, I’m setting a firm deadline of the last day of August to finish this screenplay.

Continue reading My August Challenge: Finish writing a screenplay…!