- Cherie Reich — a fellow #FridayFlash’er, and reviews books on her blog as well. (I hope she gets to White Pickups when the time comes.)
- Craig WF Smith — Craig’s fantasy novels, The Red Stone and Zoolin Vale and the Chalice of Ringtar, are in print. Zoolin Vale is also available on Kindle (Craig doesn’t know why the publisher released his second book first either). Craig also writes some #FridayFlash.
- Tony Cowin — he writes horror! He reviews movies!
I mostly had him through the afternoon, but Daughter Dearest and Mrs. Fetched did pitch in. I brought my Kindle, but never got a chance to do any reading.
Kate’s Wings and the follow-up Freak of Nature, gathered a lot of comments along the lines of “this would be a great YA novel.” That came as a surprise, as I never really set out to write YA. There are plenty of very good writers out there either publishing YA or trying to get published (some of whom commented on the two stories), and frankly the market feels a little crowded.
But… I did say a while ago that I felt like Something Big was brewing, and this could have been it. Almost against my will, I started thinking about how a story would develop — and things started click click click falling in place. But I’m committed to finishing Pickups and Pestilence, so it has to wait a while.
I remembered I’d downloaded a copy of a mindmap template called StoryMap a while ago, and decided to get the details organized so I could come back to it later (after getting the current project conquered and reading a couple YA novels to see how they go). The above is a screen capture of what I have so far — left side is world-building, right side is plot. You can tell what I’ve mostly focused on. ;-) I couldn’t remember where I’d found it, only that it was a guest post on someone’s blog. But when I posted on Google+, Trevor Mcpherson sent me the link, not realizing it was his template I was working from! By the way, StoryMap is a FreeMind map — FreeMind is free and cross-platform (a Java app) so you don’t have to worry about money or having the wrong OS.
Now if I could only find a way to download all this into Scrivener, with all the pieces in their proper pigeonholes. Scrivener has great organizational tools, but I prefer mind-mapping for initial staging. It just works better for me.
For those who think writing a story isn’t all that difficult, I refer you to John Wiswell’s How I Wrote My Novel, True Story of John 11 that he posted today. Even if you do understand what’s involved, it’s an interesting read and a great look behind the curtain as he wrote a 105,000 word first draft in five months. As he progressed, he talked about designating a day off from writing and sticking to it. I think that’s a pretty good idea, especially since I have a grandson (and a great-nephew) who are highly attached to me and a huge “to read” pile. So I’m going to designate an arbitrary day “Reading Day” and maybe another day “Me and the Toddlers Day.”
Speaking of toddlers, Skylar has the Screech of Toddler Rage™ down pat. If anything, he’s hit the Terrible Twos earlier (age-wise) than Mason. It won’t be long before they’re both bellowing, “MINE!!!”
Work… is work. Looks like I’ll be flying out to the west coast for training in late September. This will be my first flight post-bin Laden’s demise, but I doubt the TSA will act accordingly. Weather permitting, I’ll travel in shorts, a tight T-shirt, and sandals. Even with nowhere to hide anything, I’ll still get yanked out of line and probed. I may try to embarrass them, although I’m not sure they have that capacity.