Monday, August 27, 2012

Done by Summer's End - Week Three

Hey kids, me again.

I finished Chapter 14 on Sunday. Which is awesome.

Then I did some plotting. I finished the first half of Chapter 14 in a rush on Saturday, so I decided to start out Sunday with some coffee and some brainstorming. I wanted to figure out in more concrete terms what I wanted to do with the end of the book, what I had to do at the end of the book, and how exactly I was going to go about it all. So I did

And, well... this is awkward...

I still have four chapters left. That's at least two more chapters than I initially estimated. But then, I suppose that's why it is called an "estimate". Of course, depending on how things shake out once I start doing the actual writing in the coming days and weeks, this could actually end up as a give or take a chapter or two situation, but until then, yeah... it looks like there's four chapters left.

So what does this mean for you?

Nothing. Why would it?

Well, nothing except Done by Summer's End is not happening. Partially because four more chapters is a good chunk of verbiage to put down, but mostly because there's only one week left in summer...

Oh well.

The upside is, I had a 3500 word weekend and now the end of the first draft is totally within sight. Do you know what that means? It means that I will soon be done with the shitty first draft of my second novel. That's awesome. Most folks never even complete one novel, even after several attempts, so I'm feeling pretty good about that particular accomplishment at the moment.

As to how I'll be feeling about myself, my latest book, and my writing in general in a month or two, especially after the first read-through in preparation to begin a second draft, well... we'll cross that most likely scary and terrible bridge when we get to it.

A problem for another day.


Saturday, August 25, 2012

Halo 4: Forward Unto Dawn

Last year I posted a series of webisodes called Dragon Age: Redemption -- starring nerd-goddess cutie-patootie Felicia Day -- all for your entertainment, well maybe not for your entertainment, really. Honestly, as it turns out, it wasn't really for my entertainment either. P.U. stinky, know what I mean? In the end, it was just LARPing with delusions of granduer... So, in the spirit of failed experiments, good intentions and perhaps a somewhat foolhardy belief in kind of undeserved second chances I've decided to try again with a new webseries.

Hope springs eternal and as such, kids, I present to you:

FORWARD UNTO DAWN! So stupid. Who came up with that name? $10 says it was some game-nerd who has watched 300 one too many times (Once is too many times...). At first listen, the title sounds all "Once more unto the breach, dear friends", but it's actually just another scabby bastard child hopelessly lacking in self-awareness and formed out of the hope that it will hopefully cling to the familiar shape of its parent-words, since the meaning is pretty much out of the question. FORWARD! UNTO DAWN! Yeah? And do you know why? That's right, because it's always darkest before the dawn. See what they did there? Oooooooo... God damn, that's deep...

No. No, it's not. It's dumb.

Hmmm... Let's hope the title choice isn't really a sign of things to come, but it probably is. Oh well, it's a webseries... Anyway, let's watch the trailer, shall we? SHALL WE?

(Note to J-Town: The "Pincer Movement = Japanese Crane Wing Attack)

Could be interesting. Could be fun. It looks like there was some money put behind the sets and the costumes, which is hopeful. And it doesn't look like a lot of bad CGI and greenscreen present, which is great. The acting looks decent, what little of it you really get to experience. I love the inclusion of the Warthog and it's always nice to see the Master Chief show up. Ok, I intend to follow this thing as it shows up; I'll post each new video... I mean: webisode, as soon as I see it.

Stay tuned.

Also, here's a little extra character bit to watch, it's called: Enlist.

Right on. Nice haircut, boot. Try not to get killed. (Note to audience: Unlikely.)

Kick some Covenant ass, Chief,

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Done by Summer's End - Week Two

Hey hey, I'm back again.

It's me, Jon, your favorite.

So, as some of you may or may not remember, I am currently working on a new book and I am well along in the process. In fact, with only four chapters left, it's fair to say that I am rounding third and headed for home, so I am posting weekly updates in order to keep track. I started last week with this post here. The idea, for those of you out there too lazy to click on the link, is that with four chapters left and four weeks left in August, if I put down a chapter a week, by the end of the month my book would be done.

Well, first draft done...

It became a project within a project and it's called: Done by Summer.

It's kind of a big deal.

Woooo! Done by summer! Wooo! Hoooo!

Now the bad news: It's not gonna happen...

Because I won't be off by much. A week, maybe two. First off, just by taking a look at the calendar, it's clear to me now that I started a week late right off the bat. These things happen. Secondly, I just finished Chapter 13, otherwise known as only the first of the four chapters I have to complete in order to be "done by summer" and I barely have two weeks left in the month. Shit. Okay, so I'm a little bit behind. Just a little.

But that's okay.

It's okay because, as I mentioned last week, "done by summer" is just an arbitrary thing. It's a goal, not a deadline and there's an important difference there. Besides, the last three chapters should go a little easier, hopefully. Probably. See, two of them will be the big action set piece and the third will be the wrap-up. I'm feeling pretty good about them, because I've wrote them once already for the original short story version, more or less. So, we'll see, but I'm feeling confident. Anyway, yesterday was a clutch writing day and I got good work done. I'm going to try to pull off something similiar today. It should be fun. Today is the start of the good stuff, the downward slide to the end, the big fight...

Today, there be dragons.

Today, there will be blood and fire.

Oh, shit. Look out. Scary.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Done by Summer's End - Week One

Ok so, just to catch up the folks in the cheap seats...

My name is Jon. This is my blog. I am a writer and as such, one of the many things I enjoy doing is writing stories. Specifically, whole books or I try to, at least. Anyway, I have very nearly pushed the giant boulder that is my second Work in Progress (or WIP to the cool kids in the know...) to the top of the big hill know as The First Draft. Very nearly. Almost.

Any day now...

This is good news for all the obvious reasons, but mostly because my plan when I started this book in earnest, way back when in the long ago month of January, knee-deep within the frigid grip of the winter of '12, was to finish the first draft by the end of summer. At the time that seemed reasonable, it seemed easy-peasy lemon-squeesy, y'know? Eight to nine months from now? 90,000-ish words, give or take? Sure. Why not? No problem, right?



So, I started out. What else can you do? See, like the lead singer of Live taught us in that song from the Hobbit: the greatest adventure is what lies ahead.

I was so damn hopeful.

And then suddenly, here we are on the far side of a hellishly hot and doggedly miserable summer, the cool breezes of fall only now beginning to lick its cool relief across our feverish brows, and I find that I am only three or four chapters away from being First Draft Done.

WTF, man, right? I have no idea how but I did it. Three or four chapters? I am nearly done, thank the Flying Spaghetti Monster for its myriad of blessing, because as many of you long time readers may remember me mentioning a time or two... this draft has been a bitch. Just terrible. Mean. Stubborn. Unwieldy. Ugly. Misshapen. Nothing but a pain in my ass. But now...? Now, the end is in sight and that's a mighty fine good deal. Three or four chapters left? Three or four weeks until Summer's End? That's do-able, folks. Do-able. And not just do-able, the symmetry makes it seem like it was meant to be. I can totally do this. I have a whole month.

However, today is the end of the first week.

Shit. That kind of snuck up on me...

So how did I do?

Ehhh... the first third of a chapter is done.

Didn't quite make it... yeah, so right from the start I'm a little behind. Off like a herd of turtles, as they say. However, this weekend is open for me, so I'll have a chance to catch up. I can do that. I can be done by summer. I really can. I can do it. Come on, it's only another 25,000 or so words to hit my target. No problem. I can totally do that.

Hopefully. Wish me luck.

See ya' next week, kids,