New work in progress

Good Witch, Bad Witch, and the UndeadDon’t I always have something I’m working on but never finishing? But this time I’ve committed myself to this new story. I’ve even bought a book cover image to go with it. That’s a first.

Good Witch, Bad Witch, and the Undead is set a few hundred years ago and revolves around four sisters. Temperance, Prudence, Constance and Mercy. Its genres are magical realism and folklore and historical fantasy. It’s not really a historical novel because I’m not focusing on events of the past, I’m just trying to channel a feeling for the novel. It’s also a more character-driven story that revolves around the four sisters.

The story set up is more episodic. With the chapters being 5000+ words long, almost like short stories. Currently, I’ve completed the second chapter. I do not know how long the book will be or when I finish it. However, I am planning on this to be my next publication.

I’m mostly pantsing my way through this novel, writing a chapter at a time and then planning the next one with a few key events in mind. If it’s novel-length, then I might make it a physical copy through Amazon.  

Using a plot outline for the first time

I had a loose idea of a story that I wanted to write. It involves witches, ye old times and maybe the undead but I didn’t really know where I was going with it and how to get there. So instead of doing my old and tried true method just doing a rough outline with points and ideas added to it as I go or just winging it, I decided to find a novel template (something I hadn’t bothered to do before) and see where it takes me.

I found Derek Murphy’s ‘The One-Page Novel Plot Outline‘ and was like, this looks put together, so I printed it out and started to fiddle with my story. With brainstorming with the ideas I had and intending to set up the inciting incident, I somehow ended up with a 6000-word first chapter that maybe is its own contained story with leads to a sequel. I’m not tossing out what I wrote because I like it and maybe that’s how I’ll set my book up. Long chapters that contain mini-stories that push towards an overall story, why not?

I’m working on chapter two and brainstorming ideas that will lead to connections to later on for foreshadowing or something. Who knows what I’ll think up of.

Glue

Just came across this interesting bit of advice. If you want to complete something, you need to glue your arse to the seat and do it. Funny enough it came from one of those Reddit read-it videos that have popped up on YouTube recently.

And I agree with it.

For the longest time I wrote in my living room alone, usually without music playing and then after burnout, I was all over the place. Nothing could reignite my ability to write and now I can’t seem to write as well as I did. I now go to cafes and let the background noise help me. But that shit adds up and I can be a cheap ass sometimes. So I need to retrain myself to write in my home again and save monies for my move to the Netherlands.

 

Works in progress

Currently, I’m looking at shorter works that I can polish up while I’m in a bit of a writing slump. There is this one group of short prequel stories that belong to a story I haven’t written yet. That’s three years old now and I’m starting to panic. The days are passing by, and I’m not as successful as I want to be. I am also moving to the Netherlands in about two months and the stress is getting to me.

The most current things I’m rotating between are;

  • A social sci-fi YA that I think will be quite long. It’s 60ish thousand words and maybe a third? done. Not too sure where I’m heading with the end. Maybe I might have to break it into two books? Atm, I’ve run out of steam so it’s going on the back burner until I get some more ideas for it.
  • A dystopian novel that is not even halfway through the first draft but I have a guestimate of where the ending is. I’ve changed the POV from first to third so it needs a rewrite.
  • A sci-fi YA that’s over 120 thousand and I need to complete the 3rd draft. I’ve lost a character somewhere and need to resolve that one.
  • The prequel stories I’m editing at the moment does not have a novel attached to them and I need to write a story plan for that, plus write a first draft of the novel.

I don’t think I’ll have any stories ready for publication for at least 12 months. That worries me because I wanted to have more done by now. I’m almost 30 and with not much to show for it. I know when I move I will have some time off and hopefully, I’ll use it to my full advantage.

 

Looking back on my first book

Feet or Fins was first published four years ago. It entered the world quietly because I didn’t market it and that was a good thing because of how bad it was written. I had to have a friend point it out to me and I went back and was like, ‘Yeah, your right. Good thing no one bought it.’

That was my first foray into the self-publishing world and boy was I glad no one noticed. I did like 14/15 drafts of that book and it still wasn’t good enough 😦 But the next draft was immensely better. Thank you, friend.

For the longest time, it was only on Smashwords and then I got over the idea that Amazon was somehow lesser because it was a global corporation and knew that it would help me if I joined. Then I used the site to create a paperback version. By this stage, I had created a second cover image and when I finally got around to ordering a physical copy for myself I saw a few formatting issues. I used asterisks to separate some scenes instead and a few of them were out of place. Recently I updated my cover image again! I think this one is a lot nicer, and it features two mermaids.

Alas, I overestimated myself.

I will be 30 in about five months and my goal of having 10 stories out by then looks to be kaput. I thought it was a reasonable goal, but alas it was too much for me. On a brighter note, I’m getting my writing bug back and have been slowly working on some stories. There is one that I mentioned way back that it might be my best story yet. I had stalled on it but have now written another chunk. But I know this book is far from completion. There are a lot of others that are nowhere near completion and I don’t know when my next publication will be 😦 Maybe it will be a case that in a year or two I will end up pushing out a lot of them.