Posts Tagged ‘ achievement ’

Project X: Signed, Sealed, Delivered

With my days off from work falling on Wednesday and Thursday, my ‘weekend’ is always a little off-kilter. The advantage though is that I’m the only adult who’s home and that provides good writing time as long as I’m able to manage my time properly. This past ‘weekend’ I was able to complete my work on Project X. Then I took a step into unknown territory… I submitted it.

I feel like throwing a party or doing a dance but honestly my nerves were all wrapped up in the worries that I was following the guidelines correctly. If there’s one thing I’ve had hammered into my head in the past few years it’s this: “Follow submission instructions to the letter!” There’s likely nothing worse than spending copious amounts of time working on a WIP to then torpedo it by not following instructions.

Composing the email was a task that took me almost an hour as I read, re-read, and triple-re-read the submission guidelines. Did I include my real name? What about my phone number? Did I remember to attach the damn file?!?! Universe-ending questions such as these ran through my head with each pass of my unsent draft. Actually worrying was a good thing as I did miss the ‘Real Name’ field and quickly inserted that into the list of information required for submission.

In the end, I was satisfied that my email was 100% correct, the file was attached and then I hit send. A momentous occasion to say the least but the lingering ‘nothingness’ afterwards was a stark reminder that there’s more words to write, more story to edit and tons more work to do. I’ve set my first story free and now I wait impatiently for an answer that likely won’t come for many months.

Aside: I loved the movie Project X as a kid and just thought it was fun to pay homage to this cool movie from the 80’s in my writing.

Hello?

*pokes head out*

Anyone here?

First, let me blow the dust off this place.

Holy crap, I’m blogging! Wow, this post has been a long time coming. I’ve actually been pondering when to get out a blog post for a couple of weeks and I’m just coming off a 90-minute writing stint on Spirit Hackers. I’m going to try to keep this blog post somewhat short because while my posts have been few and very far between, I think long ones are a bitch to read, so I’m gonna try to keep it brief.

NaNoWriMo: This year I actually participated in National Novel Writing Month and I will say it was a spectacular failure for me. My grand total was 2,928 words, which is lightyears short of the 50,000 word goal. I really only wrote in three sessions and due to my work schedule I had no opportunities to get into the social aspect of the experience with meeting people and participating in write-ins.

Looking back on NaNo, my biggest enemy was time and also a lack of planning. I didn’t have a plot until November 7th and even then it was just an idea. There was no outline and nothing else. The bottom line: I had no story. I knew it would be a near-impossible task but now I know that unless you go into November with guns-a-blazing and enough ammunition you won’t get far. I’ll likely try NaNo again next year and see what happens.

Spirit Hackers: Contrary to (my imagined) popular belief, Spirit Hackers has not been abandoned and I have been getting words down into it. Granted it’s been slow as a snail but writing is writing. I haven’t forgotten about my old friend and I still believe in the story. I still believe that this can be a successful novel and something that has the potential to sell.

So here’s the overall breakdown of the book’s progress: As of my last update to this blog’s sidebar the book was at 30 pages with a word count of 11,395 words. Based on Scrivener’s stats, the book currently stands at 49 pages with a word count of 18,448. Now of course I’ve gotten writing done here and there since that last update so this jump is a compilation of many sessions. Today’s session was a good one though at 1,421 words, which is 10% of that updated word count. It’s up to chapter 12, which is probably a quarter-done right now.

The story still has legs and looks good. I’m still hopeful that once it’s eventually finished, things will move a lot faster and I can get it edited, out to some betas and then submitted for agents & publishers.

Podcasting: My podcast The Geekcast is still going strong after it’s re-launch back in February. I’ve moved into two episodes a week with two separate co-hosts to make it easier. While the show takes up a bunch of time, it’s much easier to do with other people rather than solo, which is how I did it for three years. I think writing is similar to that where you don’t have anyone to rely on or to hold you accountable. As a solo enterprise, writing has those pitfalls of self-discipline, which for me is rough.

Alright, so that’s it for now. I’m hoping to slowly get back into updating this place more often than every four months but like everything else, we’ll see how that goes. If anyone still checks into this place and reads this post, I want to thank you for believing in me and for sharing in my experience.

Be well.

The Freelancing Has Begun

Suite101 Logo

I mentioned last week that I had been reminded about the freelancing options out there on the internet and decided it would be a good start in establishing myself as a writer in some sort of published form. I would like to announce that my freelancing career has officially begun!

Late last week I was informed that Suite101.com had reviewed my application and approved me to be one of their writers. After a busy weekend I spent some time on Tuesday writing up an article and submitted it. With no surprise, it was retuned to me requesting some minor edits. Yesterday those were done and the article is now up on the site! You can read the article here.

One thing that does get me slightly down is that I cannot reprint the article anywhere for one year. This means that I will not be able to place them here on Copious Notes when I get new content out there. To help compensate for this, I have added a link at the top, right which will get you to all my articles. Additionally, I’ll post here with a link to the article whenever a new one goes up.

I’m pretty excited that I am actually writing for a site and it’s content that people may actually get to see. I don’t expect to get any real money out of it, so I’m not quitting my day job any time soon. 🙂 I hope you all enjoy it and I’ll let you all know when I get more content submitted and approved.

Beta Time

100%

As of last night, I’ve finally completed the second round of editing of my Robert book. The story comes in at 130 pages (unformatted) and 56,000 actual words. I think this is a good length and I also think this book has potential to go somewhere. That, though is where my beta readers come in.

I have four beta readers ready to go. My wife being one of them, has started the book and has already made comments. I’m in progress of informing my other beta readers that it’s time to call in their generous offers to read my story. So this is where I now stop working on this book and try to focus on other projects. I haven’t touched Mars in a few months and I’ll probably end up picking that back up again to get the story working. I only have two chapters written.

I know my beta readers have all the time they need, but I’m guessing within a month, all four will have probably finished it and have a crap-load of comments and suggestions for me. I’ll take all that and go on another round of editing. Once that is done, I’ll be querying for agents to see where I can go. Hopefully things can happen.

For now, I just want to enjoy my accomplishment and revel in the fact that I’ve actually written a book. Not many people can actually say that. Now lets hope people think it’s good. 🙂

Editing Round 1: Complete!

100%

Well it’s been six months in the making but yesterday in a marathon session I completed the first round of editing of my Robert story! At times I found it hard to focus but I got through the final ten pages and it was great to save my progress on the last word of the document. Talk about exciting!

This round of editing has opened up my eyes to show me the piece is not ready for prime time. My initial thoughts were to write the book, edit once and then self-publish via print on demand. My writers group has opened my eyes to show me that not only do I need to do more to polish it but I also could have a great story on my hands. I really don’t want to screw this up and so I came up with a better editing system to give this book the best chance possible:

1. Read entire book and line edit. Make changes and insert items as needed.
2. Refine the structure. Move things around, add needed items, etc. Make it flow and work better.
3. Beta readers. Have a few people read it and go to town with suggestions, thoughts, etc.
4. Final edit. Take everything from beta readers and incorporate as needed.

I think once I completed these four items, I will have a piece I can feel good about and I can begin sending it out for submission & also query agents.

For now, though I’m going to celebrate with some ice cream and TiVo! W00t!

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