What Gets in the Way: Pesky Human Stuff

Where have I been?

I’d like to say that I’ve been away writing up a storm. Instead, I’ve been bucking the waves of emotional turbulence. Things are much better now, but as I journey through the choppy rapids of writing I learn more and more about my process.

I believe some writers can work through anything. I can work through busy periods, making sure that I do my allotted words a day. I can work through dead zones and creative droughts, although I often have to ditch those words.

What I can not do is work during extreme emotion. If I get good, giddy writer news, it’s tough for me to get myself down in that chair, because I’m too busy basking. Yup, I *can* use it as a motivation to write, but the happy keeps distracting me.

During darker times, it’s nigh impossible. I gotta admit, the last four days have given me some awesome characterization ideas in retrospect, just not for the troll piece. It’s hard to focus on anything when what you’re doing is spending 24/7 being unhappy.

I’m not writing this entry to get patted on the head. The problems we were having took a bit to resolve, and we’ve come out the other side, perhaps a bit stronger and more knowledgeable. But I’m writing because I wonder if you ever get stoppered, and what makes you get stoppered.

And because, since I haven’t been writing, and I haven’t been posting, if I don’t write about something, you’ll think I was dead.


Back in the writerly saddle, I sent submissions out to Cabinet des Fees, Pseudopod, and Clarkesworld tonight. Gotta love Clarkesworld. My rejection will be here in a day and a half.



After writing for four hours, the characters on the screen are beginning to look a bit like ants. Time for a bit of a break.

Currently writing through the Manuel and Wort string of the story. It will intersect with Hild’s story and the Widow’s story shortly.

Verbage? 32.1K


Potpourri for One Hundred

Jay Lake can use your good vibrations today as he goes in for some cancer surgery.

Michael Jasper links to Dean Wesley Smith‘s entry about writing a Book as an Event.

Well, yeah, writer’s got to keep writing. Writer’s got to send things out. And writer’s got to be patient with self. And writer’s got to keep repeating those things.


Keeping with rejection of novel as event, Maggie Stiefvater writes a Dear John letter to NaNoWriMo.



In the we knew them when section, fellow VP Fighting XIII’er Sean Craven makes his first short story sale to Tor.com.

Sean gives me hope today. Even though I talk with a great deal of confidence, when the teachers at VP told us we were the next generation of SF/F writers, you can believe it about the others, but you have doubts about yourself. It makes me feel that all this cuspy stuff I’m on the verge of *can* happen, and perhaps, just for Sean, for half an hour to celebrate, I’ll allow myself to get good and hopeful.

Good job, Sean.


So. Lunch. Writing. Waiting for the new stove. Turkey pick up. Yeah.


Mary Stewart

It’s vacation. Finally. While I didn’t escape as free as I hoped I would, I think I can balance the tasks and creativity accordingly.

I’m re-reading Mary Stewart‘s The Crystal Cave for our SF club book group. Thirteen pages in, and a friend already couldn’t get my attention until the third try.

Still alive at 93, Stewart hasn’t produced a new book for some years, but her list of books is impressive. What I think makes Stewart a master of the novel genre is her versatility. She is known among fantasy fans for her superb Merlin series, but she is also an author of romantic suspense.

The writing in most of her books is just damned good. It’s precise, descriptive, and voluptuous. True, you won’t find gun-toting, tattoed babes. The heroes and heroines of her books belong to a different age in writing, but like Bradbury, her writing holds up well in a more modern time.

I’m really excited to read The Crystal Cave again, and I hope you will be motivated to take a look at Stewart’s unique perspective on Merlin.


Subconscious Access Point

My beast seems to work best at ideas when I’m driving alone, which I did today and yesterday.

Interesting for me to know.

You? When does your subconscious kick into overtime? When do you get your good ideas.


And while you’re thinking about that, here’s a post from Seanan McGuire to read. Ostensibly, it’s about Harlequin Horizons, but it’s really more about how you get to Carnegie Hall.


Hulk Hercules: Professional Cover


ETA: This is now the final version of the cover!
Here’s a link to the Cat’s Curious blurb. There, if you click on the image, you can enlarge the picture and see all the awesome detail.

Sonya Sipes, Cats Curious publisher, has given me permission to post the almost finished version of Emily Kaplan‘s Hulk Hercules: Professional Wrestler cover.

I am very happy with it! Thanks to both Sonya and Emily for all their hard work!


What Are You Working On? What’s New?

Since it looks like my middle name is going to be inundation for a few days (It’s an old Puritan name, like Inundation Pruitt or something), I thought maybe a fun thing to do in the spirit of focusing on you (especially after the Nebula entry, which was all about *sniff* me), would be maybe a thread in which all of you tell folks about your current WIP(s) or recent releases. (I wanted to see if I could work in one more parenthetical phrase into this paragraph.)

And while you’re telling me, I’ll be checking papers, registering more people for Rosetta Stone, finishing off ELA graduation plans, reading some stuff for a grant, reading some other stuff for a convention board decision, checking out a registration database, checking papers, writing teachers about unpopular bookstore policies, explaining other plans for next semester that didn’t happen this semester due to limited time resource, writing two finals and whatever else comes up.

When I’m not at work, I’ll be writing, and reading a friend’s piece, which I’m really looking forward to. Much more fun, but not much posting time as a result.

So, tell me what you’re working on. Or what you have coming out. Why you love it. How it’s going. Where we can find it. And stuff like that.


The Nebula Awards

For those of you who have been seeing this list around your friend’s list, if you’re like me, you might be curious about how the Nebula nominations work.

I too have had some publications within the specified time period. I know many SFWA members have been hanging around the Tamago specifically so they can nominate my work, so who am I to disappoint them?

In all seriousness, this feels like a very cool rite of passage. Here we go:

Eligible for Short Story:
The Love Song of Oliver Toddle in The Absent Willow Review

Oliver Toddle was talked about two entries back. You can read all of it at the link above.

Two Vampires and a Panel Discussion in Drops of Crimson.

Two Vampires and a Panel Discussion: Hollywood vampire killer Reginald Rath finally gets to Vampire Con. (A funny Nebula for the win! nominee.)

The Initiation Rites and
Incantations of the Vampire Killers Junior Auxiliary
in Drops of Crimson.

This one might get the Nebula for longest title? Anyway, Abigail Rath and her friend Vince Brewster go on their first vampire killing mission. (Also a funny Nebula for the win! nominee.)

Eligible for Novelette:
Sister Night, Sister Moon in Needles and Bones from Drollerie Press.

Sister Night, Sister Moon is a tragic love story between a man, a woman, and two muses. While it’s not available for free, if you’re really a SFWA member who’s considering it for nomination, I’ll get it to you.

We now return you to your non-Nebula blogging.