Monthly Archives: December 2013

Beyond Life — a WIPpet/ROW80 post

Cough and the Common Cold

Cough and the Common Cold (Photo credit: RobertFrancis)

Bleh!

Okay…  said it.  I feel bleh.  I have a head cold that is just draining all conscious thought from my brain.  I have a cough that won’t quit…  I feel bleh!

Sorry, had to get that out of my head.  Hope you all don’t mind.

ROW80

Long story, short story…  the whole story: I goofed off all weekend, cleaned house, played Minecraft, and had some family time.  Now I’m hip deep in editing again, have started a full story-world bible to help me get a better grasp of my secondary characters and subplots, and I’ve added another two scenes to my Jayce and the Wheeled Warriors fanfiction.

I’m behind on my sponsor duties, and I missed my Sunday post (wish I could say I was sick then, but I really was just spacing).  That’s alright.  It was about being a Grinch anyway, and who needs a downer so close to the end of the year and all the holiday buzz?

So there’s not much to say here except “let’s do a…”

WIPpet

Simple maths today: 9 small paragraphs from Chapter 18 of Release:

It didn’t happen the way she’d said it would. Instead of a rush of strength outward, I was nearly crushed under the inrush of strength. For a minute I panicked, watching as Tam’s wife started to collapse against the altar, then checked myself and concentrated on blocking the channels she’d opened in my mind. As soon as the flow stopped, I rushed into the circle no longer caring if I followed the ritual or not.

Ellen looked up as I helped her from the stone to sit on the ground. “The firecall, Kieri. You have to do it,” she whispered, her voice barely audible.

I swallowed, wanting to apologize so much for messing things up. “I can’t…”

“Won’t,” she whispered. “No healer could…” She caught her breath for a second, then forced her gaze on mine. “Please, try. For me. For Kara. The words… Tyrai mishæ naityru.”

I clenched my fist for a moment, then let my gaze turn toward the altar behind us. My senses felt hyper aware. Though I was at the wrong angle to see Kara’s body laying there, I could see her. I was aware of every one of the people around us, the exact kinds of trees that circled our clearing, the rabbit that nestled with her young in a burrow several yards away. Could I do what she wanted? She said I could. But what she’d told me to say sounded totally wrong when I said it.

Mouse’s words rang in my ears about what I was. I wasn’t Dantii. Hellfires, Daryl Vestimorn had been the Andar’s son and hadn’t been talented at all. What made me think that as Alanii Vestimiir’s grandson I’d be any better? I looked apologetically at Ellen and reached into my pocket for my lighter. Maybe I wasn’t a witch like my grandfather, but I could give Kara a flame to pass her to the world beyond by more mundane means.

Reaching into my pocket made me brush the hilt of the Heir’s blade. I knew as soon as I felt it; just like before, there was a soft voice in my head.

~Nai, Kieri. Trust your instincts. Those words are not for your kind. Say rather Atarmilshiinai atarnii vashiir.~

The mind touch had felt like that of a woman, not the male one I’d heard before. For a moment, I wondered if it had been Kara’s spirit. After all, she was dead. Secrets about me that I didn’t even know would be common knowledge for anybody beyond life.

Funerals are never happy affairs, but usually they don’t come with collapsing priestesses and magic knives to add to the ambiance.  Kieri knows how to pick his venues, hm?

Many cheers and (non-physical) hugs to K.L. Schwengel for her bravery in fighting the forces of the internet and books that demand to be written for the sake of hosting WIPpet Wednesdays for us.  Feel free to show your love (or not) by commenting and visiting other WIPpeteers here.

 

The Dream — a WIPpet/ROW80 post

ROW80

Not the best week to ask how things are going or what I’m doing….

Living the writer’s dream here: working on Release, but the cumulative word count of a 177 words since Sunday doesn’t say much for itself.  Or maybe it does since this is an editing wordcount.  Of course, serious editing has its drawbacks beyond a diminished wordcount.

…um, yeah….

The doubt monster has returned it all its fiery glory.

Not that I actually think Release is that bad.  It may be a case of “Mommy Pride”, but I like the story I wrote.  It just is the wrong story; I know that I know I need to change it, but I’m still having a serious problem killing my darling, even though I fully intend to resurrect it after the surgery.

So beyond the low wordcount, I’ve been reread, rearranging, deleting and generally trying to not cry as I rewrite history… on Acaria at least.  And for the next few weeks, that’s pretty much all I intend to do for my ROW80 and general writing goals.

Happily being a sponsor and a mom have given me moments of distraction.  I had a great time reading Julie Glover’s post on her Inner Grinch.  She inspired the post coming this Sunday.  And it was nice to see the return of some erstwhile ROWers to the Sunday check-in.

On the mom-front, I got to help the Boodle with his homework yesterday: writing out, in Spanish, instructions for a classmate to draw a picture from.  Pretty awesome.  I know I couldn’t have done that in 2nd grade in French (longer even, since we didn’t get a language until high school).  And the worst art for him?  Getting started…  same as any writer.  😀

WIPpet

I can’t vouch for the effects of translating the text from Scrivener to the blog page, but this excerpt was eleven lines in my editor.  Simple maths…  eleven for today’s date.

Again, this comes from Release.  It’s happening a bit earlier in the book than last week’s excerpt, but we get to meet a somewhat familiar character here.  The ‘he’ our narrator, Kieri is referring to is Alanii; though he’s a much older man these days.

Footsteps fell on the stairs.

I darted toward my room. Managing to reach the door, I glanced back…to see him looking down at me wryly. “You obey well, I see. No matter. Grab your night bags. I am bringing you home”

His voice held no anger or malice. He sounded sad more than anything which added no encouragement. I had no wish to go where such strange and terrible things were treated as routine.

“No.”

“No? Why not? It would do you good, Kieri. Perhaps my wife would come here to stay, giving you a mother. You and the girls could be playmates.”

After the last few years, to be offered playmates struck wrong–the thought of girls was worse. I felt he was calling me a baby. Not that I didn’t feel like one, as I cringed, imagining his Nightwind playing mother for me. I covered my fear with bluster.

So there you go… Looks as if the dream is lost on our young Kieri already.

Cheers to K.L. Schwengel at My Random Muse!  She hosts WIPpet Wednesdays (it is like herding cats, after all) for us.  WIPeteers post pieces of a draft (Work In Progress) that somehow relate with the date at the group linky and bravely invite company, comments…  even gentle (or not-so gentle) critiques

ST4S — It’s a Kind of …

Magic

Magic Hand

Magic Hand (cred: Donald Harper)

Between My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, The Magic of Christmas concert at the Palace today…  even the book on my bed is about magic (it’s one of those compendiums of different magical practices around the world and through history).  For weeks upon weeks, magic in one form or another seems to have invaded my life.

I’m starting to feel like Alanii, who is just discovering in Courting the Swan Song, that he’s not the talentless young man he’d been lead to believe he was.  Not the place I’d thought I’d be at this point, but there are definitely perks….

Elements of Harmony: Courtesy of our Brony

Elements of Harmony: Courtesy of our Brony

The concert was, as always, wonderful.  My Little Pony is a wonderful take on a show that could have easily failed for so many reasons (remake of an older, failed commercial enterprise, a show created by a toy company for the purpose of selling toys, etc.).  And the book…  well, it’s kind of dry, but packed with lots of stuff–story ideas abound.

Thing is, I need to start working some magic of my own.  After several days of debating (plus Minecraft-ing to avoid making a decision, evading said decision via the generous application of housework and laundry, and…) myself (I lost the debate, btw), I have decided to go ahead and submit Release to Angry Robot.   I’m not going to go overboard in trying to make the series fit with the pre-history I am writing in the Swan Song series.  I am tweaking things, of course.  Me, leave a manuscript alone for any amount of time without fiddling?  Not likely.

The story of my life

Hopefully I won’t leave another typo on the first page of the manuscript this time as I somehow managed to do when I first tried submitting it to TOR a few years back.  There is a definite curse to fiddling with things…

Yeah, magic.  I’ve got that.  😀

ROW80 check-in

Not a lot of writing has gotten done since Wednesday.  Most of the time, I’ve either been fighting with my laptop (either my typing has seriously deteriorated in the past few weeks, or the keys on the old beast are finally starting to not work right) or debating the pros and cons of trying to get Release published now.  Granted, it’s a million to one chance that Angry Robot will buy the book; I still want it to be the best it can be for the submission.

Magic in its truest form

Thing is, I don’t know what that is.  Still…  So I keep wondering if I’m doing something silly by deciding to submit the manuscript.   It’s hard to love something the way I love Release and still have a horrible feeling that it is ‘wrong’.   But maybe what I really need to do is give myself the opportunity to let it go.  And hopefully by submitting the piece, I will be doing just that.

As for the rest of my goals…  Sponsor duties are on track.  The exercise goals are more behind than I would like them.  I’m adding smallish bits of activity here and there.  Not as much as I would like, but some.  It’s been a chaotic month already.  At least I have one somewhat guaranteed ‘day-off’ coming up….  though then I won’t have ‘the answer‘ anymore.  Still, like my gray hairs, I’m kind of looking forward to the next year of my life.

Speaking of new years…  A new ROWnd for the ROW80 comes up in January.  I’m on the fence about sponsoring again.  I love the visiting and the support.  I could do that for years.  It’s that sponsor post…  Anyone with an idea they’d like for me to write about?

And just one more song to go: