Category Archives: The Fly Tower

July Writing Roundup!

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imagesIt has been a very long time since I’ve taken the time to write a post, and I’m sorry about that. Time got away from me this spring but I’ve made more of an effort to get my writing back on track this summer. I wrote a short story, and now I’m doing research for a kids book about barn owls that I’m pegged to write for the children’s publishing house I work for by day. (Side note: did you know that barn owls have three eyelids? One for blinking, one for sleeping and one for cleaning/protecting their eyes!)

My goals for the next couple of months are simple. Write the children’s book, revise my short story and submit for publication, and then start incorporating comments from agents into my first book. Longer term, I want to have the first book, The Fly Tower, back in the hands of prospective agents by the end of the year. I also want to revise the sequel. I finished the first draft in February and it has made itself a lonely home on my laptop. Also, my boyfriend hosts a monthly erotic live reading, and there will be a write your own month later this year or early 2016. I failed to write a story for the first call, but I have my plot in mind now and plan to have something ready for the next one.

Wish me luck! Expect to start seeing my blog posts on a consistent basis again too!

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October Writing Roundup!

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Here I am, ready to take stock of what goals I have (or haven’t accomplished) on my writing path. While I didn’t meet all my targets, I stayed busy with writing and didn’t slack. Sometimes the idea of how long something will take to write or edit isn’t realistic or the story takes a shape I haven’t anticipated. So while I’ll strive to be more productive in the next four weeks, I’m quite happy with the progress I made last month.

What I’ve accomplished since September:

 –Wrote The Elephant Hotel chapters 3-5 (two chapters short of my goal)…as well as did some necessary research

–Started compiling another list of literary agents though I might wait to send another round of queries.  I’ve received a few more rejections, but the last couple have been filled with constructive critiques based on partial reads (i.e. not the basic form letter). I will probably start a list of the suggestions and execute some changes before sending more queries. I’m still waiting for half the agents from the last round to get back to me.

 –Revised and polished Shadow, my bounty hunter story story.  Submitted prior to the 9/30 deadline

Goals for the next 4 weeks:

It is a pretty light agenda for the next month…basically, just write, write, write! 🙂

–Draft The Elephant Hotel chapters 6-10 (more if I have time)


Photo credit: centrum.org


September Writing Roundup!

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I’ve been much more productive over the last four weeks and feel in control over my writing schedule. I’ve thinned out my social calendar again to make room for my writing and feel positive about my fall goals.  The next four weeks will be a true test of my ability to stay focused because I want to finish The Elephant Hotel by Christmas.  I’m a little behind yet I still have a chance to make it happen.  Yesterday, I went for a run and it really helped open up my creative process and unleash some ideas.  When I wrote my first novel I would often go for a jog before I sat down to write a new chapter because I find it helps me focus and sharpens what I want to convey. I don’t even have to be blocked to experience a surge of creativity though running definitely works when I’m feeling a bit stunted and frustrated.  In other words, the next four weeks will be all about more running and more writing!

What I’ve accomplished since August:

 –Completed The Elephant Hotel chapter 2 rough draft, and outlined the entire plot

–Reworked the synopsis and query for The Fly Tower and sent out to 7 more agents

 –Wrote the intergalactic bounty hunter story and have already finished two rounds of revisions.

Goals for the next 4 weeks:

–Draft The Elephant Hotel chapters 3-7 (more if I have time)

 –Research more agents

 –Revise and polish bounty hunter story story.  Submit by 9/30 

“The greatest part of a writer’s time is spent in reading, in order to write; a man will turn over half a library to make one book.”—Samuel Johnson

Writing Roundup!

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Welcome to my first writing roundup!

I started this blog over a year ago, and have been pretty sporadic in keeping my readers informed about my overall progress. So, I will now post an update every month on the 15th. Before you begin reading, please enjoy the beautiful alternative 1880s map of North America designed for The Fly Tower world.

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What I’ve accomplished recently:

 –Submitted queries for my manuscript, The Fly Tower, to ten agents

–Received two rejections on query alone; received one request for a  partial, but later the agent declined to request the full manuscript; haven’t heard back from the remaining seven agents though it’s still within the timelines listed on their websites about turnaround

Surprisingly I’ve been pretty calm and non-obsessive so far.  The rejected queries didn’t even really faze me;  I expected some rejections.  Though, yes, of course, I was disappointed when the one agent sent back the rejection after reading the partial…it was a bummer of a day.  But I had to brush it aside because I need to stay focused and positive, and this is only the beginning stage.

–Plotted and outlined the first two chapters of the second book in the Consortium Chronicles series, tentatively entitled The Elephant Hotel, and wrote about half of the first chapter

 –Plotted a new YA book about a far-flung future where AIs have wiped out humanity, then decades later, decide to clone a human girl from recovered human DNA to learn more about the race they terminated from existence. Story will be told from the girl’s POI and will pick up around the moment she discovers that not only are the parents who raised her really AIs but she is the only human left. Obviously there are deeper intrigues and twists but that’s all I want to say about this one for the moment.

 –Plotted an intergalactic bounty hunter short story for an upcoming anthology currently accepting submissions

Goals for July/August:

 –Complete The Elephant Hotel chapters 1 and 2 rough drafts in July and 4-5 more chapters in August

 –Rework the synopsis and query for The Fly Tower, follow up with any agents as necessary, and send queries to ten additional agents

 –Draft the intergalactic bounty hunter short story

–Actually meet with my writing group in August…I had scheduling conflicts in June and July.

That’s all for now…I’ll be back in August with what I accomplished (or didn’t).

First Round…Done!

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Last night, I sent out query letters to ten lucky agents! 🙂

Seriously though, I’m looking at round one as a learning experience and a way to gain some feedback…unless, of course, some agent is blown away and my search ends early…seems unlikely simply because of the sheer number of writers out there hoping to land an agent.  Still it’s a great feeling of accomplishment…and now I can take a breather from the business of getting published and work more on book number two. Yay!

Those readers looking for the May Want List, don’t despair!  It will be ready by the 31st. 🙂

Writing: The Anima Principle?

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It’s been awhile since I updated you all on my efforts to get this steampunk fantasy novel of mine published.

So, where am I and what have I been doing all this time?

Well, needless to say, I’m a little behind, since my last goal was to have agent query letters ready to send by early January. BUT I did finish my third round edits and the manuscript is shinier than it’s ever been…of course, it can still use some edits but…and I don’t think I’m alone here as a writer…I could edit this manuscript forever waiting on perfection and never be 100% satisfied, keeping the words prisoner on my computer and not making a single stride toward actual publication. So, I’ll settle for this mostly satisfied feeling, and am letting go of that pesky fear of exposing my novel to the harsh, cold, critical world of agents and publishers.

Yet, want to know my biggest dilemma at the moment?

What to name it! I’ve had The Fly Tower as a working title since almost the beginning though I’d really like to change it and frankly, I’m hitting a wall. I’m leaning toward The Anima Principle and will likely send my first round of submissions with this new title…though maybe inspiration will strike by early next week and a better title will surface.

I have about 8-10 agents selected as recipients for my hopeful plea because apparently, all the advice out there recommends starting with around 10 submissions and see what type of response you get and then go from there…seems like a good plan. Why send out 50 queries if you might need to punch up the letter for a better response?

This past weekend, I started drafting the dreaded query letters and while they aren’t ready yet, I feel good about the rough work, and my plan is to start emailing agents early next week.

Insert terror and glee in equal measures here.

Today, I also plan to draft the story synopsis because a couple of agents request the 1-2 page summary be submitted with the query letter.

There.  That’s all for now.

Anyway, wish me luck or to break a leg or whatever…I’ll be posting updates much more frequently on my progress.

Manuscript Progress

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It’s been awhile since I updated my readers on The Fly Tower.  So, what’s happening with that novel of mine, you ask?

June:

Finished my self-imposed June 30th deadline to complete the 2nd round of edits

Added five chapters from a secondary point-of-view

Received a sample copy-edit of the first chapter and made plans to have the editor rework the first five chapters before submitting to agents

July:

Compiled and read through the revised manuscript and made notes along the way to help with clean-up

August:

-Ground to a blazing halt

I don’t think I even looked at the manuscript, BUT I did collect some additional research I decided was necessary after the last read through.

Minor progress at least

September:

-Started a new round of edits

The revisions are coming along quite nicely.  It’s my opinion my brain needed August to recoup in order to be really helpful to me again.

All in all, I’m two months behind.  My new plan is to have the manuscript ready by mid-December, and start the agent query letters in November (though sending them will wait until the complete MS is ready).  Somewhere between now and December, I still hope to have the copy editor rework the first 5 chapters.  That’s all for now. 🙂

Easy reading is damn hard writing. ~Nathaniel Hawthorne