The Five Hundred and Fifty-Seventh Post: The One Where I Give Away The Plot!

So, I have an idea for a vampire novel that is going to address one of the complaints I have about vampires and how they’re currently viewed in pop culture.

I am personally exhausted with the notion of vampires being avatars for raw sex. Vampires as lovers, or objects of desire for me has been played out. I want to go back to the idea of being a vampire being something horrific in the short term.

So, I thought just how bad is it to be a vampire, but not know what to do. No sire, no instruction – just wham-bam-fanged-you-ma’am and left on the side of the road. Sure – vampire lore is everywhere, and the main character isn’t completely ignorant, but everything else the main character needs to learn is going to be on their own (haven’t decided if the main character is going to be male or female). It’s a good idea, and I am going to work on it closer to the end of the year. When I finish The Show Must Go On, and the werewolf book Your Tribe, Our Tribe, I’ll work on the vampire book tentatively titled Fang Baby.

I amazingly got up on time this morning, and not hitting the snooze button three or four times. I got a lot of work done today. The only change I had to my evening routine was I went to the gym shortly before I went to bed. Didn’t write, but I did walk a few miles. This morning, when I woke this morning, I was fully awake – not bleary minded or anything like that. I felt good. I even wrote 850 words in about an hour. I’m going to try to repeat this and see if I can develop a habit. It was just weird to wake up and get right to the shower and breakfast, If I try to repeat what I did this morning for the next morning, then I need to figure out when to go to the gym since today is laundry day and that takes a good chunk of my time.

Is there anything else going on? Not really. Still focusing on getting the current novel done in a month and a half, then moving on to the next one. I want to have at least four novels first draft finished by the end of the year with one ready for publication. Whether it’s going to be picked up by a publisher or not – who knows? Still mulling that over in my head.

Take care, and stay safe.

The Five Hundred and Fifty-Sixth Post: The One Where I Change Antagonists in Mid-Stream!

I’m going to work on Your Tribe, Our Tribe after I finish the current work. I’ve noticed that my last few works featured female protagonists, and I should take a break from that. Well…that and Breeder isn’t coming together like I want it to, but YourTribe, Our Tribe is bubbling along quite nicely. Given the themes of identity and groups vs. individuals are really salient today, I should strike while the iron is hot for a change.

The Show Must Go On is coming along very well, even though my writing habits are becoming spotty again. I’m about to declare one of the secondary characters dead and really kick off the strangeness. I’m excited to do this, because we’re getting into the horror of the story, and I’ve been itching to get into that real deep. I am still looking forward to having this done by the middle of next month, but for my own mental health, I’m calling that a soft finish line. I guess the schedule will be that I write in the morning, afternoon and evening, but on the weekend, carve out an hour or two for re-writes for ServeMe Now. Now that the text is finished, I am getting better ideas on what I should have included. Working them in is going to be a task, but it has to get done and get done soon before I can try submitting this book to a traditional publisher.

Yes, I decided, and I am going to try to get this book out there for a small to medium sized press. I am going to try to get it published that way for a year. If nothing happens by the end of the year, I will self-publish again. I have a good feeling about this book. I can feel things coming together with it. Maybe horror is my genre? Who knows? Comedy and fantasy haven’t really worked out well for me.

Well, having said all of this, I do need to get to work. Thanks for stopping by, check out my books to the right of screen, and feel free to donate a cup of coffee to the cause.

The Four Hundred and Fifty-fourth Post: The One Where The Cat in the Box is Reading My Novel…

I can haz review?

Apologies for the lateness, but I had finished the book as far as word count goes – wrote 60,000 words in about 22 days – but as far as the story goes, I need to finish one chapter and then I am completely done. It’s turning into quite the Schrödinger’s Novel – both done and undone. There are a couple of chapters that I might pad, but there is definitely one chapter I need to finish. I don’t know if I want to pad them or not. I might bring them it up to the writer’s group. So far, it looks like the whole novel is going to end up with a fist draft of 62-63,ooo words. After that I need to trim off 10% and then bring it to another group (if it’s still there). I am leaning towards getting trying tradpublishing this so I really want to get the word count down to something that is appealing.

On other news, I think I have a werewolf story to round out the four for the year. I was

going to do something along the lines of “My 300-lb Conjoined Twin” to throw in some body horror and a light poking fun of reality shows. However, this werewolf idea is too good to pass up. The title (taken from lyrics to a Soulfly song called “Tribe) is Your Tribe, My Tribe. I hope I’m breaking some sort of new ground…because I am bored with shifter romance. I want to bring some sense of madness back to werewolves. We’ll see what happens.

There’s not a whole lot going on here to be honest. I’m just trying to finish this book before the end of the month, and me being the procrastinating type will probably not get it done until 11:59:59.99 PM April 30th. Here’s to writing while one’s hair is on fire!

The Four Hundred and Fifty-third Post: The One Where I Looks Like I Might Finish Something For A Change…

I am so close to finishing the novel. I just need to pad the final chapter and write a couple that I skipped over (Candy Coated Freakout and Serve Me Now, respectively) while writing the first draft. After that – I am done with the first draft and I can begin the re-writes and the edits. Hopefully, I can keep this a still tight 60K words. Once all of that is done – I get to do the thing I like the least (even less than re-writes and editing) is trying to design the cover, but I am going to worry about that later.

It feels so good to be near the end of this. The next project is going to be The Show Must Go On. This one is going to be a total re-write from what I had initially started. This one is going to be a first-person, which is my weakest P.O.V. writing. I haven’t written that many, so I am looking forward to the challenge. While I am writing that, I am going to brainstorm for my third horror book called Breeder and it’s my first haunted house story. I have another idea that definitely needs to be fleshed out a little bit more called The Golden Ticket, and we’ll see what happens from there.

I’m hoping that some of my other books will get picked up from these four horror books. I just need to find the genre that I can profit from. I’m going to get back to The Marvelous and Malefic Doomsday Medicine Show since it has both a horror and fantasy vibe to it, but I want to spend 2023 getting a better platform put together.

And that’s all that this year is for me – trying on horror since that’s a genre I love nd have read plenty of. The other one is fantasy…even though I never read Lord of the Rings. Yes, yes – please feel free to clutch your pearls and swoon. I’m just not a fan of the writing. Worldbuilding? Holy crap – I wish I could get to that level of detail. Besides, I’ve seen the movie dozens of times and it’s a source of inspiration for me.

Mostly, I am ready for this book to be done. I’m ready to move on to the next project and start that over again. I have a better feel for the beats, and I’ve been watching enough ghost hunting shows that I think I can fake a good one. I just have to get this one finished. Three chapter, I should get that done by the end of the month. I hope I didn’t jinx myself.

Not helping…

The Four Hundred and Forty-Eighth Post: The One Where the War is Without and Within…

I have a problem.

I love games with deep lore and in-game history. I’m not into the mechanics of the games so much as I am with the history and the personalities that make up the game’s atmosphere. One of the games I like with a super-deep lore is Mechwarrior/Battlemech. I played it as a table-top game, and as a video game when they came out. I have the latest iteration of the game: Mechwarrior 5: Mercenaries. I love it because it takes place at the same time frame I’ve played the table top game. I like watching what’s going on and knowing that there is a deeper story unfolding that I can’t wait to see happen.

Also being a writer, I have a premium on time. There are only twenty-four hours in a day and a lot of them are allocated to every other thing that gets in the way like work and sleeping.

Look at him. Lazy.

At some point, I have to write.

Writing takes discipline. Discipline that I really don’t have with the omnipresent Mechwarrior 5 begging and pleading for attention. Before you say, “Just play an hour.” This isn’t a game that you can settle up in a session or two. This is a looong game – as long as Borderlands 2 (another favrotie game). You can see my problem.

Get thee behind me…

As much as I love writing, even when it’s a struggle to get something out – I love the distraction of the game. That’s what it is, is a distraction. I need a better way to deal with it. Right now, I write during lunch and that’s it. When I get home, it’s the game before and after dinner before I go to bed. I should be writing. If I do my 850 twice a day, I can finish this book in a month and a half.

But Mechwarrior…

Trying to find something to inspire me, I watched the movie Creed and there was this line from Stallone:


[pointing toward Adonis’ reflection in the mirror]

That’s the toughest opponent

you’re ever going to have to face.

This is the mindset I need to cultivate. It’s me against me – the creative me that wants to do this for a living against the lazy, game obsessed me. It’s going to the gym me against the junk food and TV watching me.


It’s you against you,

and he’s in the way.

Get him out of the way.

I need to get Mechwarrior out of the way. I need to get TV out of the way. I need to get junk food out of the way. Will it be easy? Nope. Will I stumble? You bet. But I’m only going to fail if I quit.

The Four Hundredth and Forty-seventh Post: The One Where I Ask If Dentists Prefer Black and Decker Pilers to Craftsman?

The first chapter of my latest horror novel (titled: “Serve Me Now”) is not really the first chapter and that’s a good thing, because it was like pulling teeth to get it written in the first place. After it was finished (and I felt like I’d just climbed Everest with a 300 lbs. conjoined twin on my back), I let my wife read it. She said it wasn’t the best I’d written – which means it was a pile of hot garbage. I showed it to my writing group – they said I could do better. That definitely means it was a pile of hot garbage.

So, I went on ahead and wrote the second chapter. I figured that I could continue along with the book and just come back to the first chapter and rewrite it in the second draft. I let my wife read the second chapter, and she said it was a lot better – no shoehorning of things, no beating the reader about the head with certain concepts. I haven’t shown it to the writing group yet, but I’m sure they’re going to like it better than the first first chapter.

This is what it’s meant when the writing advice: kill your darlings is uttered. I kinda liked the first chapter. Sure, it was clunky, but I liked the opening of Leslie taking the cherry tomato from Brian’s salad. I liked that visual and how it set up the future of the book. However, the rest of the chapter was, as mentioned earlier, hot garbage. So…it got cut, but I am going to keep that scene with the cherry tomato to be used later. Maybe as a sign that the hunger is getting more intolerable for Leslie.

How was your writing experience?

I am continuing along with the novel, and the tooth-pulling has diminished, but not gone away. I’m concerned that the hunger is growing too rapidly so far. I really want it to be a source of dread – especially when it drives her to the point of legit insanity. Pacing is always a problem for me. Maybe I should bring that up to the writers group. Been writing since I was about seven, and I am still learning things. Never quit learning, kids.

The weather is getting better here, but I am not going to do any photography for a few more months. I want to make sure we’re not going to have a cold snap anytime soon. I’m still struggling to find a good subject, so right now I’m just working on technique. I need to get good soon, so I can make my own covers, I have so many ideas, but I need people to work on them with. Any local volunteers? I can guarantee a steak on one photoshoot.

Well, that’s all for now – sorry this is a little late, but my schedule’s been crazy. Check out the books on the right – I am going to be adding a couple more soon from favorite authors. Stay safe, stay dry and ta-ta for now.

The Four Hundredth and Fortieth Post: The One Where I Pop In To Say ‘Hi!’

Hello, everyone! I’m sorry I’ve been gone for so long, but I decided to step away from the keyboard after Nanowrimo just to recharge my batteries. I’m hoping that I can re-capture the energy of Nanowrimo and make it last a little longer (19 books longer to be exact). I won Nanowrimo as in I wrote 50,000 words in 22 days. It was a matter of getting few done during the morning, afternoon and after work. On the weekends and write-a-thons is when I could pull down some big numbers. I’m going to try to keep this schedule up with the help of caffeine.

Shown: Nanowrimo Energy

The book is coming along well, with the characters surprising me at almost every turn, but sticking (kinda) to the outline I wrote. I’m not a hardcore outliner. I’ll just have something to keep me going, and some note of good lines to fold in at appropriate times. I haven’t had a lot of writer’s block this go around. Mostly, if I got stuck, I would just skip ahead to another scene and figure it out later. This rarely happened, so I got most of the story done. Right now, I’m trying to write a convincing speech for the characters to rally behind and outlining the second book.

I’m feeling really good about this one. I’ve got a model for monetizing it, hopefully to get some breathing room and get this out of the ‘fervent hobbyist’ level. Most of the other things that I had I could only monetize when I was done with them. With this, I can submit it a chapter at a time and give out various short stories (provided I can write them. Short stories aren’t my strong suit) and build a subscription model through Patreon. At the end, I can gather all the chapters together and sell it as a complete book. I might even do that with Dirt Elf – once I get rid of the lame character aspect. I’ve got on already in the current work and I really don’t like repeating myself.

Well, other than that – everything is good here. I’m going to put up another posting soon, then take two weeks off for the holidays. Again, sorry for the spotty posting, but with Nanowrimo and December there really isn’t going to be much time for me. First of the year, however, I am going to go back to regular Thursday posting. Hope you all have a good holiday season and look forward to seeing you in the first of the year with good news!