Brown River Queen cover art

Sunday, May 4, 2014

One Away, One on the Launch Pad

Fig. 1, the gun my Muse keeps pointed at my head.
I'll say this much for the year 2014 -- despite the usual (and a few unusual) external pressures, I've been able to get some writing done.

The new Markhat novel, The Darker Carnival, is in the hands of Samhain Publishing. I'll probably have a yes (yay!) or a no (no!) in about eight weeks. That's the first book I wrote this year.

The second book, All the Turns of Light, is now undergoing the brutal process of first-draft revision. So far, it's been a relatively painless process, but I'm only about ten percent into the book, so anything could happen.

All the Turns of Light is the second book I've written this year. It's only May. If I can maintain this 2000 word a day pace, I might manage another pair of books before 2014 closes.

I don't say this to brag. But if you're out there, like I was last year and all the years before that, thinking 'I'll never be one of those writers who can turn out ten pages a day,' please think again. You can do it.

Look. I'm inherently lazy. There are sea sponges with more vim, vigor, and get-up-and-go than me. I believe hard work is best performed by other people, preferably at a location so far away the sounds of their determined industry don't interfere with my napping. If work truly builds character, thanks, I've got enough character already and anyway it's time for Supernatural.

So how did I defeat my powerful inner sloth, and actually get a respectable amount of work done?

I trumped my inner sloth with my inner OCD freak. Every morning, I make a list on a little card of the things I need to do that day. On that list is the entry 'Write 2K words.'

I cross things off the list as they get done. Now, my sloth would gleefully eat the list, or wander away from it to find a nice patch of cool shade, but my inner OCD guy cannot abide the sight of an incomplete item.

Yeah. It really was that simple.

I am using my own mental defects against myself. There's probably a clinical term for that, but if you know it don't tell me.

Motorcycle Update

My mighty Honda is back! Putting everything back together took several hours, but when I turned the key and hit the starter, she cranked. 

Honestly, I couldn't believe it. I was fully prepared to hear the engine sputter and fail. I wasn't even going to employ bad language at the realization I'd have to start all over. I nearly fell off the bike when she started, as though nothing had ever been wrong.

I got the book below, and followed the instructions, and avoided a trip to the shop. Books rule!

Final Words 

Like I said, the new Mug and Meralda is only about 10 percent done with the first editing pass, so I'd better get back to work. Have a good week people!

And don't forget -- the new Markhat The Five Faces goes on sale June 17! But you can pre-order now, wink wink nudge nudge...


  1. You know, I have one book sitting with two beta readers, so waiting on that, and another book I have to get to editing... but my goal wasn't the writing, it's been social media. Maybe I need to switch that up and chill on the social media and make that list to get these books out there in the field... good post and something to think about.

  2. Hope you like it, Black Cat! Lyse, I hope this is the right approach. But who knows? We're all running headlong in the dark here, sometimes...

  3. Ordered! I have the same battle with my sloth versus OCD. I have an app called "Epic Win" that gives points for completing tasks (which are completely useless) and the same thing happens--if I put in on the list, it gets done, because I can't stand an undone task. My sloth outsmarts me by refusing to put some things on the list.

  4. Carol -- I do the same thing, much to my shame. I will check out 'Epic Win' though, thanks!