Sunday, December 30, 2007

Chapter 15 is done!

Chapter 15 is done! I'll probably go back over it tomorrow to check it for typos and such, but the revision is complete. It ended up at 6000 + words which is what I was aiming for. Now onto Chapter 16, which I may break into two as it's pretty long. I'll have to be careful though, as this is where the big climax comes in. I don't want to weaken it.

I have a nasty feeling that I've lost part of a scene in 13 or 14,, so I need to go back and check on that too. But I'm really happy that I'm about back on track now!

Friday, December 28, 2007

Christmas Thingy

I had a lovely Christmas and I hope you did too. Received a new wireless mouse... not many people's idea of the ideal gift but this is a Logitech Nano and it's brilliant. It has the tiniest USB connector and is all around the best mouse ever! I love getting new toys that make my work easier.

I haven't been playing with SpeakingNaturally much. The headset that comes with it is rubbish, and the USB headset that I've been using has been snaffled away by my other half. As soon as I get it back I'll start testing again.

And Chapter 15 revision is going well. I should get it complete over the weekend at this rate. So all-in-all I'm a happy soul.

Monday, December 24, 2007

'Twas Christmans Eve...

I'm just about done with the revision of Chapter 14, thank goodness. I'll be adding a new scene at the start of Chapter 15 and I hope to get at least half of that done tomorrow. Yes. Tomorrow. I know. Tomorrow is Christmas Day, but this will be my Christmas present to myself. I want to try to hit 1000 words, but if I don't I won't beat myself up. I have the scene playing in my head. I may even try Dragon NaturallySpeaking for it. And I really will try to post a snippet by the end of this week. Promise!

Have a safe and very merry Christmas, however you choose to celebrate it.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Where did the time go?

Oh boy! Have I been busy or what? Too much work and not enough time to even think about the blog. Hopefully things have calmed down a bit now. What little spare time I've had I've spent on ASF, and it's been precious little. I'm falling way behind with the revision but I'll get there.

On another, but somewhat related theme, I have an early Christmas present. Dragon Naturally Speaking, which is a speech recognition software package that hooks up to most Microsoft ( and no doubt other) Office programs. I'm going to try it out to see if it is a good as I've been led to believe. I'll post my thoughts on it in a few days. I'm hoping that it will let me get my ideas down on "paper" fast while they're still fresh. If it works it could be a wonderful way to do a first draft. We'll see.

Thursday, December 13, 2007


I added a nice piece to the second scene in Chapter 14 today. It works beautifully. Amazing what can happen when the characters take over. I don't think I'll be able to do much more until next week now though, but hopefully things will loosen up then.

I'm not ready to start posting snippets yet. Ah well... the best laid plans etc.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Slow but steady

Well, I'm making progress. Chapters 12 and 13 are done. I'm being beaten bloody at work, with no let up in sight and Chapter 14 needs a lot of revision. Still, I'll get there. It may take longer than I want but I'm going to keep plugging along.

Friday, December 7, 2007

Chapter 11 is done!

Chapter 11 is finished! Phew! It took a lot longer than it should have, but I'm pleased with it. I also have most of Chapter 12 done, just a few more nit-picky things to put right, and then onto Chapter 13. That needs some work. I'm hoping that I can get a good chunk of it done tomorrow, or on Sunday while I'm in the air. We'll see. I'm planning to start posting snippets next week, if work and internet connections allow.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

No More Excuses

I'm really falling behind with my edits on A Shadowed Flame. I must get my nose back to the grindstone, so tonight, no matter what, I'm going to complete Chapter 11.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Working ...

I've been working day and night so haven't had time to update the blog. I have done a little work on A Shadowed Flame, mostly at the aorport yesterday while I waited for a flight to replace the one that was cancelled. Business travel is SUCH fun. I hope to do better this week!

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Technical Difficulties

I've been really busy, and I've had connectivity issues from my hotel. It's the only excuse I have! I hope to be able to put some time into writing tonight. If the connection hold up I'll update again later, if not maybe tomorrow.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

After Thanksgiving

I didn't do much on A Shadowed Flame today, just a little editing. The weekend after Thanksgiving it's my tradition to decorate for Christmas, and that means two trees (artificial, my days of Christmas tree hunting are long gone), and setting out the nativity scene etc. Tomorrow I'll be flying to San Antonio for a project; that will be interesting in the worst sense of the word. I don't have an allocated seat on the second leg of the flight, so I wouldn't be surprised if I end up getting bumped. We'll see.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Slow Going ... but still going

I've only written about 200 words over the last couple of days. Far below my goal of 1000 each day, but at least I'm getting some words down. I know what I want to say, just can't find enough time to write them.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

The Future is Here

I promised to write a few words about digital books today, so here they are.

Digital books are here to stay, whether we like it or not. It's clearly the way things are going in the publishing industry. I don't see digital books taking the place of the printed word any time soon, but the digital reader technology is improving. If you haven't already looked into it, you should. I noticed what looks like a pretty nice reader on It's "feature rich" -- but I can buy a whole lot of mass-market paperbacks for $299! Of course, a paperback doesn't look as cool as reader, but then again I'm not really very interested in looking cool.

I travel quite a bit and one thing that, for me at least, is a major drawback to using a digital reader is the "10 minute" rule on aircraft; having to switch off anything that runs on batteries during the first and last ten minutes of a flight. That's a lot of reading time even if you're on a direct flight. The cost of the reader is also hard to swallow especially as it's the kind of thing that could get popped into the seat-back pocket and forgotten in the rush to deplane (I lost a pair of Bose QC headphones that way -- ouch!) I won't be buying one any time soon, but I'm keeping any eye things. And one thing is certain, there are tens of thousands of titles out there. The revolution is here to stay.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Tear about Tuesday

I've been tearing around like a thing possessed today, so this will be short. Just landed from a short flight, an hour and fifteen minutes is pretty short, it's the getting to the airport and through security that adds up. Anyway, I haven't had much time to work on A Shadowed Flame today. I did well yesterday, adding about 800 words most of which were written longhand ( yes I do actually put pen to paper occasionally, rather than breakout the trusty word processor) on the flight out. I typed them up last night. This evening's flight was not so conducive to work though. Very crowded, but what can you expect? It's Thanksgiving week after all. I did try to put together a story arc, but the words wouldn't flow for me. Not to worry, I'll get it done later this week. And so to bed... tomorrow I have something to say about digital books and such. See you then.

Monday, November 19, 2007

A Shadowed Flame

This is the title of my current WIP. I finished the original first draft back in February, let sit for a month and looked at it with fresh eyes. Hmmm. I loved it BUT... I could see huge problems with it. I didn't outline or plan anything, just let the book write itself. And it was my first attempt at "real" writing. There were craft issues galore. But I still loved the story so I rewrote it pretty much from scratch. In the process I've added plot lines, and the characters have changed a lot. Some have had to take a back seat (and they didn't appreciate it, I can tell you!), some have pushed themselves to the fore. The bottom line here is that I'm now revising the second draft. And wouldn't you know it, I've found some horrendous timeline issues which have taken me several weeks to fix. I think I have it straight now. As a result, I've had to add scenes, so the word count is going up. At the moment I'm at around 69K, and I think I'll end up with around 95K, maybe more as the story keeps developing.

Later this week I'll post a brief story arc. I still need to write it, which is why it isn't here yet. And maybe I'll put a snippet up for comment.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

It's a start

So here I am, blogging when I've resisted for so long. Why the resistance? That's simple. I'm a procrastinator by nature. Unfortunately it's a trait that I seem to have passed on to my offspring too. I could say that I've avoided blogging because I work in the IT industry and so spending my free time on the internet is something I want to avoid. It wouldn't be true though. I do work in the IT industry as a Database Consultant, and it's a job that I love. It consumes my days and far too many nights and weekends. But that isn't who I am.

I am a writer, albeit not published... yet.

No more excuses! I'll make a blog entry every day -- well maybe not EVERY day -- occasionally my day job will get it the way. But I will endeavor to make an entry every day, journaling the progress of my current project, a fantasy novel called A Shadowed Flame. I'll post snippets, and maybe even some of the backstory that doesn't make it into the manuscript, but I'll also post other things too. Thanks for dropping by.