Category Archives: writing

The Holy Highborn

As usual these days, another late post.  Life once again got …odd (mostly internet connectivity and access issues), here we are again on Thursday evening finalizing things.  Plan for next week…  start the post on Tuesday, so it can be finished on the correct day!

That said, I’ve had a pretty awesome week of progress.  Lots of words, some serious cleaning…  generally “good stuff”.

A thought on cleaning…  being a bit of a packrat is more than just laziness or  overwhelmed and busy (though those last two definitely are involved these days).  As I’ve tried to clean out years of accumulated … stuff (stuff I bought, sure I would use it; stuff given to me… because; stuff that was here when we moved in), I’ve found it really hard to get rid of these things—even to give them away (though that does tend to be easier than just tossing them).

An example of this…  The other day I decided it was time to trim my archive of writing magazines.  I have issues of Writer’s Digest, The Writer, and even the Romance Writers Report backlogged for years (some from the 1980s), and since a lot of the articles are either repeats or dreadfully behind the present market needs, I figured I’d clear the lot of them.

I got rid of ten (well, I haven’t yet…  they are in the “to go” pile by the door).

I really could not bring myself to get rid of more than that in one attempt.  The guilt was almost nauseating.  Like “why did I save these so long if I didn’t plan to use them again?”, “what about the hidden gems I missed!”, and the ever frequent (applied to magazines I’d never finished and started at all)… “I don’t have the right to toss these.”


Ten magazines from around a hundred or more…  I had been slowly weeding them, but this was my first attempt at a mass exodus.  Guess I have a little ways to go before I can just ditch the whole box.

Does anyone want some old writing magazines?  😉

We’re once again in Marche/Promenade from the Swan Series with Valichii as he tries to understand what is making his campmates so unsettled this morning.

I included six (sort of) paragraphs today, five for what should have been the 1+4 yesterday and one partial sentence from last week’s entry to offer some extra context.

…it wasn’t likely that the lordlings sponsoring this campaign would let them leave before they had a chance for jousts and sport.

No matter what the holy highborn wanted to think, their mages’ skills gave them no guarantee of victory. Just as because the forces had had success pushing back the frontier into the desert the past few years, it didn’t mean they’d won the war. To Val’s mind, it meant they all needed to be more careful; the lordlings seemed to think it meant reason to parade and fest all the longer.

He’d slept so late this morn on account of their fool carousing. Though, at least, he’d not been hauled out of his rolls to settle the spat between Hirisii’s entourage and the Harnii-Semis as several of his tent-mates had. They’d been allowed to miss first muster this morning as consolation, but given the dogs and the horns, none of them had been sleeping much when he’d stepped out for his morning toilet.

“Me neither. Anyone know who started the story?”

“First I heard it was from old Elsn.” Sibon snorted, nearly covering the table in front of him with crumbs. “Said he had a vision of the battle to end all battles and that we should prepare our souls for Her Mercy.”

“Elsn’s been saying that nonsense for longer than I’ve held the Oath.” Val scoffed.

If you enjoyed that, we have more to enjoy at the WIPpet linky  written by our other awesome members. Gratitude as always to Emily, Wrayburn for graciously maintaining the bloghop


Early Muster

Welcome back to another (very late) WIPpet post. Sorry… have felt under the weather the last few days.

Before I get to the story bits, here’s a quick update on my progress for my ROW80 goals:

Today I crossed the 20K mark for NaNoWriMo.  Typing is going well.  And I’ve managed to get a few more boxes packed and things put away/sorted for the move or travel in the new kitchen. 

Goal for this upcoming week?  Clear out the office of extraneous stuff and pack up things I know I will never use.

Now to the WIPpet:

Today I offer you six small paragraphs from the tentative opening to Marche/Promenade, the third book in my Swan Song series. The maths involved are: 1+1-8=6 for the day and month.

This piece follows directly upon last week’s excerpt, where Val has joined some of his campmates for breakfast. Last sentences of last week’s post included for flow…

He (Val) didn’t quite dare to grin at the man, when the bowman took up a solitary slice mournfully.

As if they all hadn’t been filling their jaws on the stuff for some before he’d arrived.

“Early muster this morn,” he said after he’d taken a few bites and washed them down solidly with the boiled cabbage water in his tankard. Val didn’t like how quiet they all were. Save for greetings, they, like the rest of the men in the tent, now ate in a tense silence. Hurrying, but taking a long as possible to do so.

He watched to see if there were any signs, sideways glances, stiffened shoulders or clenched teeth. Instead of those, all he could see in them was sense of confused acceptance.

Val wondered why. Usually the Katsdan didn’t hold much close to the breast among his own men. And he’d heard nothing through his connections with the Army.

Finally Jalla shrugged. “Heard a rumor that this might be the last battle of the season. Don’t see how.”

Val nodded thoughtfully. He’d heard similar rumors this past week and like Jal had scoffed them off as fool’s ramblings. With nearly three more weeks before the weather even hinted at cooling, it wasn’t likely that the lordlings sponsoring this campaign would let them leave before they had a chance for jousts and sport.

Like that?  Then head over to the WIPpet linky and visit some our other awesome members for more super awesome word goodness. And as always, a huge shout out to Emily Wrayburn, our gracious host.

Piece of the Past

I don’t really know where to start writing things lately.  Stories keep filling my head but in a directionless manner, where snippets of my character’s world drift past but don’t always leave enough context to follow.

It’s sort of like dealing with random WIPpet Wednesday posts (I definitely prefer having at least a few weeks of story to follow before moving onto a new thread).

Still, as we move up onto another NaNoWriMo, I’m hoping to draw together some of this disconnected fragments and mold them into something concrete.  A mosaic of my character’s lives perhaps, maybe the base for a new story…  maybe I’ll discover that some of these pieces are just the right size to mend a few holes in the existing WIPs I have laying around.

The goal is to actually write them down.

In that spirit (had to include a ‘ghost’ reference for today, of course), here’s a short WIPpet  (5 paragraphs, 3+1 for 31 and an extra) and a cool little Twitter thread some of my archaeology friends at @DigVentures posted (at the end of the post).

This snippet comes from the opening chapter of Marche/Promenade, the middle book in my Swan Song Series.

Val sauntered across the camp toward the messhall, willfully ignorant of the rush and push about him. Served the cook right to have to have to hurry a new batch of ariza, since the man been fool enough to toss the last to the dogs knowing there were returning scouts and fellows waking from their bunks still.

His fears of a half-cooked meal proved groundless however, as he took a seat at the nearest table to the doorway. He nodded to the three men sitting there courteously. “Morning.”

“Mornin’, Valisch,” muttered Hearid through a mouth of well-greased bread. Next to him, Sibon tipped his head, but continued gnawing at his crust in silence.

“Aye, and to you,” Jalla said, pushing a large bowl down the middle plank. “The ariza is fresh. Chief even topped it with grilled tongue. I think.”

So I see.” Val grabbed up a crust and used it to scoop out a pile of mash into a wooden bowl. “Pretty generous of him.” Before Sibon grabbed back the bowl, Val picked off all but two slices of the meat and plunked them on top of his meal. He didn’t quite dare to grin at the man, when the bowman took up a solitary slice mournfully.

If you enjoyed that, you can find more creative endeavors over at the WIPpet linky and visit some our other awesome members. And as always, thank you to Emily Wrayburn, our gracious host. 😀

And lastly, for those looking for some story inspiration…