Writing Wednesday: I finished a book!
It always strikes me, when I use that phrase, “I finished a book,” that I usually mean something different than 99% of other people do when they say it. Possibly 99.7%. I, of course, generally mean I finished writing a book, as opposed to reading one. (Although let me tell you, there are times anymore when finishing reading one seems like as much of a triumph…)
Anyway, so on Monday I finished the (oh my god so very) rough draft of REDEEMER, which has been hanging over me for what feels like forever. It came in at 104K, which is about where–in the past couple weeks, anyway–I thought it would land (previous to that, 120K still didn’t seem out of the bounds of possibility). It needs more work than my manuscripts usually do when I finish the draft, which is sad, but that’ll teach me to try to do like three different difficult things in one manuscript. @.@
On one hand it’s a huge relief to have the book done. On the other, finishing it triggers the rest of the production to-do list, and that looks like this:
Redeemer Wars (Redeemer) To Do:
get cover art done
– revise manuscript to fix notes, descriptions, language, etc
-submit to editor
– revise to editorial specs
– resubmit to editor
– do line edits
– submit to copyeditor
– submit for cover design
– submit for page layouts
– get ISBNs
– submit for econversion
– deliver to kickstarter backers
– submit for possible audio book
– submit for reviews
– submit for self-publication
Obviously this does not all happen at once, but it’s a REALLY LONG LIST and I’m almost certainly forgetting things. So I’m glad to have the book done but AUGH SO MUCH TO DO NEXT. This is why writers like traditional publishing. @>@
Anyway, none of that is happening this week. It’d be nice if none of it was happening even in February, but I’m already horribly late with the book and need to move on it more quickly than not. Still, I need a few days away from it, at least.
In the meantime I’ve reached 41.4K words written for the month of January and it seems like sort of a pity to not push it up to 50K. Sadly, the thing I really kinda wanna to work on isn’t likely to give me that kind of wordcount, not unless I do a great deal more of it than I could reasonably expect in the next five days (so what am I doing instead of working hard on it right now? Writing this blog post!), whereas writing a new Old Races short story would give me close to the wordcount AND get a new story ready for the Patreon crew and is therefore what I obviously *should* be doing.
I’m prolly gonna do the other thing anyway. :) I have a–well, let’s face it, an unrealistic–goal of getting a book out every other month this year, and getting going on this thing might make that possible. Yeah. YEAH. So THERE. SEE?!?!
…or something. :)
2016 work schedule
Want to know what I’m doing this year? Or at least, what I’m trying to do? Here. Let me tell you!
Publishing MAGIC & MANNERS
I’m in the very last stages of getting MAGIC & MANNERS out into the world–the last bits (the ISBN bar code, mostly) are being generated for the cover, it’ll be handed off to a professional to convert it into e-books, and it’s the first book I’ll be publishing through the Ingram self publishing system, which will theoretically make it order-able in bookstores all around the country/world. Official pub date is February 16, 2016, and the audio book will be out right around then too! And I can’t STAND not showing off the cover, so this post is also a Cover Reveal!
(SQUEE!!!! Cover art by the magnificent Tara O’Shea at Fringe Element!)
That means finishing the draft, revising it to get fix all the NOTE:s left in it (which include things like description, slang, word repetition, just all sorts of things), then sending it to my editor, who will tell me everything that’s wrong with it. Then I’ll fix it, send it back to her, give it to my parents to beta-read, get line edits/polishing details, do THOSE, send the manuscript to the copy editor, do THOSE, get the book laid out and e-files made for it, get the cover art finished, get ISBNs, get it out to the Kickstarter backers, perhaps see about submitting it for proper reviews, and finally get it out into the reading public’s hands.
Revising BEWITCHING BENEDICT
which involves everything listed above from “fix it, send it back to her” and goes on pretty well through the end of that paragraph. Perhaps not review copies for that. Maybe not even print copies right away, IDK.
Revising IMMORTAL BELOVED
closer to REDEEMER than BENEDICT, except it needs to go through two pre-editorial revision passes, for Reasons. With luck, the revision process on both of these books will be something I can do while REDEEMER is with Matrice.
which is the last of the YA quadrology I’m writing for my nephew, and which may turn out to be a Kickstarter project, which entails everything under the ‘Redeemer’ header except for for FOUR BOOKS AT ONCE.
Writing KISS OF ANGELS
the Grace O’Malley novella, & another 8 or so Old Races short stories (get them HERE first!), and overseeing production on one, possibly two (depending on how the short story project goes) Old Races short story collections.
the 2nd Walker Papers/Skinwalker crossover novella with Faith Hunter
the epic fantasy proposal
the climate change series proposal.
if I have _time_ after all that a sequel to either REDEEMER or MAGIC & MANNERS or BEWITCHING BENEDICT ahahahahahaha
writer alarm: engage!
So I’ve been looking into what’s necessary for submitting self-published books to major review sites (RT, PW, etc) and the answer is primarily “a long lead time.” Several months. Four, for RT, ideally four but 3 is bearable, for PW.
Which means if I want to get REDEEMER in for a late October launch, just post-Octocon, I have to have it written and edited by 21 June.
Written, yes, it will be written. But *edited*? Like to the editor, returned to me, and revised? That seems…unlikely!
I mean, I’m gonna go for it, obviously. I’ll try to do it. And it struck me that of course I can always *delay the general release*, it doesn’t *have* to come out immediately following Octocon, it’d just be *nice*, and it’ll obviously be out to backers well before that, but holy beans, this is a side to Official Self Publishing I hadn’t wrangled with before.
I’m pretty sure I could get the whole thing done by 21 June if I didn’t also have MAGIC & MANNERS revisions to do and the rest of Easter break to deal with (not to mention this Amazingly Snotty Cold), but since the start date for writing REDEEMER is around the 20th or the 27th, it would take some truly amazing work to get it done *that* fast. And it’s true that I’m amazing, but I don’t know if I’m *that* amazing. :)
I guess we’ll see how that whole Thorough Synopsis thing goes. :)
Speaking of MAGIC & MANNERS, I have great hopes of getting the *completed*, revised, copyedited, etc, book to backers at the end of the month, although that may be…a little ambitious. Mid-May is probably more likely, but again, I’m gonna go for May 1. Because that would be satisfying and they have been patient and yeah.
I love all you guys. <3 :)
As mentioned previously, I’ll be at Dysprosium, AKA Eastercon 66, from Friday morning to Sunday evening.
My schedule is as such:
Friday, 6:45 pm – 7:45 pm: The Ultimate Urban Fantasy Panel
Something nasty in your neighbourhood? Everybody wants to go to the big cities, so why not the supernatural?
with Charles Stross, Mike Carey, CE Murphy, and Alice Lawson as Moderator.
Saturday, 10 – 11:15 am: Kaffeklatsch
“Armstrong,” my information says. I’m not sure if that’s a location or if I’m kaffeklatsching with someone named Armstrong. :)
Sunday, 4:15 – 5:15 pm: Putting the Fantasy into History or History into Fantasy?
In historical fantasy, how far can you go in portraying real people and events without diverting from the established timeline and falling into alternative history? How far do you have to research your background looking for gaps in which to insert your story? Can you still get away with magic or superscience in some form? All these questions answered and more!
with Jacey Bedford, Raven Dane, CE Murphy, & Kari Sperring (mod).
I have been assigned the task of hugging, or being hugged by, two people (one of whom doesn’t know me and may be somewhat taken aback by this intimacy), but aside from that, I’m surprisingly unscheduled. Normally I’m highly organized and have all my meals sorted and all of that, but I guess I’m playing it by ear this time.
*Probably* Twitter will be the best way to get hold of me over the weekend. If the hotel’s wifi is not up to snuff, though, I guess if you want to find me you should either have my phone number or check the bar. :)
end media blackout
At least, a theoretical end to the media blackout. I should probably carry on with it to a fair degree, because it was pretty successful.
I think I got around 40K written in September, maybe as much as 50, including all the synopsizing and stuff I did for the epic proposal. It made a dent, anyway, in my to-do list, and I’m considerably less freaked out than I was at the beginning of September.
The epic proposal isn’t quite done, although that had been my hope. The bulk of the work is done, but I’ve got polishing to do and at least one chapter to bulk up. I’ve made huge inroads on improving the first book synopsis (which wasn’t bad to begin with) and I’ve written a considerable amount (some of it, ah, more coherent than other parts) for Future Books/Series Synopsis stuff. In a truly ideal world I would get the whole package off to my agent on Friday, but that’s wildly unlikely. (Actually. *stares at what I need to do this month* This Friday might be necessary. Hrm.)
Remaining goals for this year: finish two books, write 3-5 short stories & make 40 pounds of fudge. Not necessarily in that order, mind you. (Not even vaguely in that order.)
The media blackout gave me a chance to also do half a 500 piece puzzle (I didn’t stop, I’m just not done yet :)). I read a few books (not many, although a couple more than I expected to). I watched four or so episodes of Person of Interest on non-writing nights, and saw a couple of movies. I also managed to tidy the dining room and, to a lesser degree, the office, so that they are more bearable places to be in. I probably also accomplished some other stuff I can’t think of right now.
I have ambitions, in October, of making Young Indiana’s Halloween costume *before* Halloween eve. #nods