The general dreariness of winter in Nova Scotia has forced me indoors, where I can usually be found wrapped up in a fuzzy blanket on the sofa wearing fingerless mittens because my hands are aggressively attempting to become popsicles. The upside of this is that I have had time to work on Cerulean Bound, which means I can now announce that I have reached the 3/4 point of the novel! Huzzah!
It’s looking to be roughly around the same length as Chasing Nonconformity at the moment, so probably about 40 chapters in total. Now, as of right now it’s pushing 125k words, but expect that to drop significantly once my mother sits down with her blue pen and starts slashing. I say that like it’s a terrifying thing, and it kind of is, but at the same time it’s completely necessary because I tend to ramble. And YA books aren’t known for their rambling. Unless it’s something like Twilight, with endless pages of Bella rhapsodizing over how amazing Edward is. But Eris can only get out a few lines of rhapsodizing about Varrin before someone tries to abduct her, so short and snappy it is.
In slightly awkward news, I haven’t actually figured out how the book is going to end. I mean, I have a fairly good idea, but the specifics are totally up in the air. And right now I’m planning on the series being either 4 or 5 books long, which means I need to tie the end of Cerulean Bound into book 4. Of course, I have no idea what’s happening in book 4 yet (other than that it’s the “Rakor book”), so I may end up completely changing the ending once I decide that. I really envy people who can sit down and plot out their entire book, then stick to it. I couldn’t follow an outline if someone held a striker to my head.
What else can I tell you about Cerulean Bound … So I just finished writing Chapter 30, except it’s actually now Chapter 31 because it was in the wrong place so I had to move it. The plot will follow two POV characters — Eris and Miguri — so I need to switch between them and sometimes one plotline will affect the other so I have to make sure they’re slotted into the correct places in the narrative. It’s a real headache, let me tell you. And I already experienced that headache while writing Chasing Nonconformity, so I’m not entirely sure why I’ve done it again in Cerulean Bound. And I’m almost definitely going to repeat the feat in book 4. Maybe I just like tormenting myself. It would explain why I keep eating pizza, feeling sick, vowing to never eat pizza again, and then wind up eating pizza like three days later.
I think that’s it for now. I hit up the farmer’s market this morning, and the chocolate tart I bought is calling me. Which is a bit alarming, considering most baked goods don’t generally speak. Maybe this one’s a mutant? I should call Professor X.
It’s possible I need more sleep.
Until next time!
Unrelated media of the day:
Today’s fan art comes to us from my wonderful friend Denise Gow-Morse, who painted me this gorgeous painting of Eris floating dramatically in space for my birthday. Check it out!
Thanks so much, Denise! Tragically my super-slanted bedroom walls don’t offer any space to hang art, but as soon as I get my hands on some flat walls, this painting is going in a place of honor!
Related media of the day:
I’m going to be a bit cryptic here and tell you that this is the song I was listening to while writing a certain scene from Cerulean Bound. Make of this what you will!
I’m psyched to announce that I have officially passed the 100k word mark on Cerulean Bound! Now, don’t start celebrating in the streets yet — I still have at least ten more chapters to write, and a whole ton of other stuff in the first half of the book to fix up and make, well, not awful. But 100k is still a big deal! Woo!
Since my usual first drafts end up being around 120k words, I can expect to tap out at least another 20k before the story reaches its natural conclusion. Then we go into several rounds of editing and dramatic cuts, with the eventual goal of getting the manuscript down to somewhere in the 90k-95k words range. Cutting 25k words sounds a bit drastic, and honestly the idea is freaking me out a little bit, but I’ve managed it twice now so I have faith I can make it happen a third time.
No news on the “finding an agent” front. I’m compiling a list of possible agents to look into, mostly gleaned through this awesome lady on Facebook who posts about new agents looking for clients. My current plan is to focus my efforts on finishing the first draft of Cerulean Bound, then turn my attention to sending out my query letter. If anyone has tips on acquiring an agent, by all means send them my way!
That’s all from me. Have an excellent weekend!
Unrelated media of the day:
Check out this new sci-fi/fantasy short story collection from Nicholas C. Rossis! I haven’t read it yet, but I did proofread the previous one and very much enjoyed it, so odds are this one’s pretty good too 🙂
Exciting times, indeed. You’re in for a Ride, my 4th collection of short science/speculative fiction stories is now live on Amazon! Those of you who have read one of my previous works will be…
Self-pubbed author Audrey Driscoll is releasing three new short stories — and check out the cover art! It was created by her using Canva, which looks like a really great tool that I will definitely be checking out.
Here are cover images for three short fiction pieces related to the Herbert West Series. I designed these images myself, using Canva, which has been dubbed “The easiest to use design program in the world.” Not having used any other such programs (unless you count Microsoft Paint), I can’t verify that, but I was able to produce what I consider usable images with Canva, after a short and not too steep learning curve.
Each image is followed by its book description, and then my comments on how I put it together, for what they’re worth. Keep in mind that these are simple images to accompany brief, simple stories, and I’m a total amateur when it comes to design.
Supplement 1. The Nexus
Nearing the end of his long life, Miskatonic University professor Augustus Quarrington retraces the path to his entanglement with one of his…
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Nicholas C. Rossis has published a book on writing, and it looks awesome! I have a copy loaded up on my tablet and will be cracking it open ASAP.
Exciting news! My latest book, Emotional Beats: How to Easily Convert your Writing into Palpable Feelings, is finally available on Amazon. You may remember the book from my poll back when I was cho…
Source: Emotional Beats Launch
Great new (and beautifully written!) review for Chasing Nonconformity
This novel is the second in the Imminent Danger series. Thus, ‘spoilers, darling’.
Still annoyed after the revelation that Varrin’s thoughtful gift was actually a marriage contract, Eris Miller wants a vacation more than ever. However, Varrin’s ship, the Nonconformity, is in the clutches of the annoyingly benevolent galactic government, and Varrin seems even more determined than his usual arrogant, entitled self to get it back. Meanwhile, on Rakor, Varrin’s father – the Emperor – dispatches two lethal killers and a bad poet to bring his son home, whether he wants to return or not.
This volume continues in the same vein as the first one: real peril mixed with farcical situations. Punk tribble-analogues face genetically superior warriors. Alien music turns out to be a…
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Fellow self-pubbed author Anthony Renfro has published a new horror short story collection, and I’m helping to spread the word! If this looks like something you’d enjoy, check it out! If not, thanks for tuning in, and have an awesome weekend 🙂
6 tales of terror filled with gore and suspense.
Need to Feed
Another year. Another massacre looming. When the sun rises on the Old West town of Saltwater Junction this town will face head on two fierce predators. Vampires who stalk you in the sunlight, and werewolves that transform with the sunrise. This short story rewrites the legends and all you’ve ever known about these creatures of the night. Where do you go when there’s no place left to hide?
Fear of the Scarecrow
This short story is about a desperate man hungry for revenge. Sometimes revenge comes with a price.
The Man from the Road
A man suddenly appears on a road. He’s lost, confused, no clue as to how he got there. He starts to walk and stops suddenly. There’s a bonfire in a field nearby. He sees people dancing around this fire. They are performing some kind of ritual. He turns to flee, but he’s captured. No chance of escape. He hopes he is only dreaming, because all of this seems a bit too real.
Suicide by Gluten? In this short story one man opts out in a most unusual way.
The Dead of Winter
A short story about an apocalyptic nightmare in a crisp frozen landscape filled with winter and living corpses.Two men try to find safety in this dead world. Hoping to ride out the night. Hoping to find warmth and shelter. Hoping not to become food for the zombies.
This short story is about a Christmas Tree lot that has evil intentions.
EXP from Fear of the Scarecrow
Tommy pulled himself out of his nightmare thoughts and looked up at the scarecrow again. He took another bitter shot of cheap liquor, grimaced, and then put the bottle away. He pulled out the scrap of paper with the old witches incantations scribbled on it, and then he took out his wife’s wedding ring. He placed the gold band on the ring finger of the scarecrow, slipping it over the burlap flesh that seemed too life like for something so inanimate. It fit perfectly. He looked down at the paper, and then up to the moon. He read these words out loud.
“BY THE LIGHT OF THE FULL MOON!”
Tommy looked from the moon to the scarecrow who was now alive. Its eyes burned an eerie green color, and its cut out mouth was now filled with razor sharp teeth and plump red lips. The scarecrow broke the bonds that held its wrists and ankles in place, and floated out towards Tommy, who, of course, took a few steps back, stopping when his butt reached the green corn stalks.
Great tips for writing a series. Will be borrowing some of these for my own writing 😀
With the publication of Genesis Redux only a handful of days away, I thought I’d share with you some of the things I’ve learned over the past four years of writing the Transcendence Trilogy. Here are my top ten:
1 It’s better if each book works as a stand alone story
There is nothing wrong in writing a trilogy which has to be read in order. Some of my favourite books were written that way. If you tried reading The Two Towers before The Fellowship of the Ring, you’d be totally lost. But as an indie author, you need to maximise the opportunity of each book launch.
The one thing I’d change if I started my trilogy over again is to make each book work as a stand alone novel. As the first book, Second Chance works on its own. I’ve been told Absent Souls works as a stand alone novel, although it…
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