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Posts Tagged ‘Novels’

What Project to Tackle Next

December 5, 2012 Leave a comment

Under the Darkened Moon is not yet done, but it is getting close. A few more chapters need polishing. Then it will be off to whatever is next on the list once the novel is sent off to fend for itself in the slush piles of literary agents and publishers. And boy, is that list of potential projects long. I have so many that it is going to be hard to choose.

There are a lot of short stories I am working on. I have considered finishing up enough of those to wrap them up into an small book of maybe 100 pages or so and get something published and available for sale. Right now I am preparing to get two stories (Frist and Second Lessons & The Yoke) critiqued by my writers group. Second Chances is available to do something with too. So that could be the start for this idea. Read more…

Kind of Depressed Over This

August 22, 2012 Leave a comment

I just realized my Tickler List is over 90 entries long, all sci-fi and fantasy. Each one of those entries is a story I want to tell. Some are short stories. Others are single novels. Others still are series.

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Start Your Own Trend, Don’t Copy!

June 21, 2012 Leave a comment

I hear aspiring authors such as myself say it all the time. They say they are going to write a vampire novel because vampires are hot. They say they are going to write chick lot because that’s where the money is. They say they are going to write a novel about this teenage wizard because Harry Potter was a smashing success. They say they are going to write a post apocalyptic adventure with teens fighting each other and struggling to survive because, well, because look how many copy’s The Hunger Games has sold.

What these people are doing is writing for other people and trying to hop on a trend. They are not writing for themselves. And, if you ask me, it shows in their final products. I’ve read more than my share of these concoctions.

It seems that every time one of my friends opts to put up a novel on Amazon written in such a manner they ask my opinion on it. Ok, ignore the fact that vampire (the blood sucking type) novels are not really my thing. But I do like a good story. Note I said “good”. It doesn’t even have to be great! Read more…

My 12,000 Word Rule

May 17, 2012 Leave a comment

I tend to find that when I am working on a novel project it generally takes about 50 pages or 12,000 words before the real basis of the story itself is charted.  Usually by about page 50, about three quarters of what I had originally mapped out as the course of the story has gone into the scrap heap.  Or at least that stuff is stashed away for a possible future story.  Under the Darkened Moon followed this rule which I did not even consider a rule when I started writing it as it was my first project.  However over time the law seems to be holding true.  I have at least 50 pages completed in several other novels and each of them have resulted in 75% of the planned course being discarded or seriously revised.  Be it The Half-Orc Princess, Cry of the Golden Wyvern or Her Lovely Blood, the 12,000 word rule has been a nemesis to the finest laid plans for each of them.  Even a project I just started today as a sort of test story, The Arrow, completely went off in another direction by the 1,500 word mark and is, honestly, better than what I had sketched for it.

I attribute this to the fact that I seem to work better when actually writing than postulating and sketching things out.  I just cannot see how everything fits together until I start actually writing the actual text.  Maybe some other writers can.  But I cannot.  So I am just accepting this and embracing.

New Project Opened – The StoneFlesh Curse

March 23, 2012 Leave a comment

At the risk of putting too many irons in the fire, I am opening another new project with the working title of “The StoneFlesh Curse”. The premise behind this story comes from a simple story prompt that I wrote a few days ago into my list:

“What if Medusa were not evil?”

I wrote a one chapter opening to the story already. Don’t know how long it will be when done but for now it will be listed under my novels section of this site.

Going In For The (Over)Kill

February 16, 2012 Leave a comment

Something I have noticed in a couple of the novels I have been reading lately is that there is a lot of, what I consider, overkill in certain passages. Especially when it comes to descriptions of things and events in the story.

These passages turn me off because they seem to drone on and on describing what seems to be mundane items or events in exorbitant detail. Even when the item or event is important to the story, I find myself flipping forward and scurrying past the repetitive words. Especially when I feel the author has already sufficiently described what is happening. Sometimes brevity is best I feel, and I certainly do not mind the occasional embellishment to add emphasis. But when it seems to happen over and over, I find myself and my mind starting to wander away from the story and having to refocus.

I am sure some people like this sort of writing. Apparently I am not one of them however. I just unnerves me that a good story gets sidetracked by an over use of over zealous descriptions. I wonder if they are just used in such an overkill fashion to add girth to a story.

I already have gone through my novel Under the Darkened Moon and ripped out huge swatches of these sorts of descriptions because they annoyed me so much. Maybe by doing so it makes the story too simplistic. But to me it makes the story better.

Reading Level For A Good Story

February 9, 2012 Leave a comment

A friend of mine, a published author, suggested that any story I write should have a Flesch-Kincaid Reading Level of between 3.5 and 5.5 or 6.0 at most. I thought that seemed low so I cut and pasted some segments of published novels I have around in digital format into Word and checked. All of those tests actually fell into that range.

So I took the new Chapter 1 I have just written for Under the Darkened Moon and ran it though the readability statistics analyzer in MSWord.

The results were:
Passive Sentences – 2%
Flesch Reading Ease – 86.9
Flesch-Kincaid Grade Level – 3.8

So looks like I am in that range and if there is anything to this I have that, probably minor, hurdle hurdled.

Just to make sure though I ran my free writing exercise which I recently completed though the tool as well.

Passive Sentences – 5%
Flesch Reading Ease – 83.4
Flesch-Kincaid Grade Level – 4.4

I also ran my short story Second Chances:

Passive Sentences – 5%
Flesch Reading Ease – 85.8
Flesch-Kincaid Grade Level – 3.8

Yep. Looks like I am solidly in that range.

Where do I start?

July 16, 2011 Leave a comment

Well, I am sitting here today wondering where to start. I thought I would just sit here at the keyboard and brainstorm a little bit letting my thoughts come out and see if they lead me to a conclusion.

I have a bunch of half completed novels from years past. But that just not seem like a good starting point to me as an unestablished author in the fantasy/sci-fi field. Finishing up an existing transcript and sending it out without any credentials in the fantasy and science fiction genre would probably be a fool’s errand.

I think my best bet would be to try and get a short story or two or three or four published in a reputable publication. I have a lot of short stories that I have written in years past. But reading them over, and knowing what I know now, they need a lot of work. The basic stories are good, but they could use some tweaking, but some of the prose is not its best.
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