I Was A Middle Aged Writer

September 10, 2009

And Just Like That…

Filed under: writing — danielrdavis @ 1:54 pm
Tags: , , , , , ,

The first draft is complete! I finished the first draft of my novel yesterday. 87,429 words, 211 pages, Courier 12 point. It’s done! Now the “fun” begins. I get to go back through and find all the things that make me, and other readers, cringe. I get to send it to proofers and have them tear it apart and send me all their opinions. Then, I get to start rewriting the whole thing. But, it’ll be much better because of it. There’s not a soul in the writing world who is so amazing that they don’t need editing. If they think that, then they especially likely need editing. Me, I know I’m a good writer. However, I’m not pretentious enough to even presume that everything I put on paper is the purest gold. Everyone needs quality editing.

I both dread and can’t wait for revision suggestions and opinions. I want this thing to be the best I can get it. Rewrites are needed. I can see stuff now that needs fixed as I’m rereading the thing. The story’s great. Now the tightening begins. With diligence I’ll see this thing tight and finished before November. With luck I can find a place for it before it gets too cold, and perhaps someone willing to give me an advance so I can buy some heat this winter. We have fuel oil…it’s expensive…space heaters only do so much…I’m tired of freezing in the winter. Seriously.

To those who expressed an interest in proofing for me, the beast will hit your inbox shortly.

I’m one step closer to my first finished manuscript. Stay tuned.

D

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August 31, 2009

Other Ways to Think?!

Filed under: Uncategorized — danielrdavis @ 3:10 pm

The other day, a discussion on Magical Words touched upon thought processes and that some people think in words and others think in pictures or scenes, visually. This blew my mind. Not only because I didn’t know that there were people who thought all in words, but that so many of the writers there thought almost exclusively in words. I also found, while discussing it with my wife, that she’s one who thinks more in words than visually, but she has a bit of the visual, which I’ll get into in a bit.

This threw me for a loop first because I wasn’t aware that other people thought almost exclusively in words. I couldn’t figure out just how that would work. Is a sunset just the word sunset or does a full color scene of a sunset appear? Evidently, in some cases, it’s just the word. The other reason why this threw me was because thinking visually is such an integral part of how I write that I couldn’t imagine any other method.

When I write, I see the scene play out, like a movie (or anime, in some cases) and I have to use my words to convey and describe just what I’m seeing. Now, I can see how this could make writing easier and I could see how it could make it harder. If you have a good grasp of words and how to use them to describe a scene it would be a simple matter of visualizing and then typing out what you see. However, if you didn’t have good skill in using words to describe a scene then a sunset is just a sunset, not an early evening awash in the golds and coppers of the setting sun. Night just beginning to encroach, mixing the hint of its violets and burgundies in a breath taking cascade of color. I couldn’t imagine not being able to do that.

My wife says it’s probably why I’m very good at description and writing combat, because I can actually see the action taking place and describe it. I never realized just how important thinking visually is for me. I’ve found that it’s even more important when I’m writing scripts because I can see the scene changes, the cuts, the breaks, the camera angle changes, etc. This helps greatly when writing movie scenes. Again, I couldn’t imagine trying to write a film script without being able to do that.

Now, my wife thinks predominantly in words, but has some visual thinking. If she concentrates she can think visually, but it’s more like in line drawings, black and white, like pencil drawings and her characters tend to look shadowy if she tries to visualize them. However, we also found through testing that if I say a noun, like a car or a bird, she’ll get a quick flash of the thing in question, but if it’s something else, like silence, she’ll think of just the word and meaning. For me, if I think of silence, I get being in a place that’s completely quiet, like a still field with no sound around me.

It was such an interesting thing to me that I had to look it up and found a decent Wiki Article that talked about the differences and I found that the mention that 2/3rds of the world thought visually, as was mentioned on Magical Words, was not completely correct. It seems the majority of the human race thinks in some combination of both, at about 45%. Less than 30% are strongly visual and only around 25% think only in words. Now, it also claims that of that 30%, an even smaller number are what they call “true picture thinkers” and I seriously think that’s what I am. I can’t ever remember a time when I’ve thought words over visual.

This can definitely result in some people not being able to learn certain concepts based on the teaching method of the teacher. Art class would be a pain in the butt for word thinkers, I would think, being unable to visualize what they want to do. However, as I told my wife, it could be a very good reason why I’m never ever satisfied with what I draw/paint/etc, because it never quite lives up to what I see in my head.

Now I find myself going around, asking family and friends how they think. It’s actually giving me a bit of insight into why they do certain things or why I can’t convey concepts at times. It’s an interesting subject.

So now I’m going to ask those of you who are reading, how do you think? Do you think visually, with words, or some combination of the two, and how, if at all, does it affect your life, career, etc?

D

August 24, 2009

Rewrites Done, Novel Next

Filed under: writing — danielrdavis @ 1:49 pm
Tags: , , ,

Greetings,

The recent rewrites of the script that isn’t mine, but is are now finished.  I’ve not heard word on whether there are any more needed, but I do know there will likely be a third minor rewrite (called polishing), in the future.  I say “isn’t mine, but is” because when I was originally handed the script it was not much more than a 50 page outline with some good ideas, but some bad ones too.  It was an interesting premise, but was a skeleton in many regards.  In a couple months I’ve built a solid foundation around it and fleshed it out greatly with the things needed for good storytelling.  It’s definitely a quality piece of work now and I’m hoping others will feel the same.

On that note, I was told that the producers have a meeting with Paramount to pitch the film.  Should all go well we may see the script picked up by one of the big companies on the block.  The work is much more solid now and, fingers crossed, it’ll gain some attention in the mainstream market.  I’m especially hoping that the revisions I’ve been doing on it will get notice as well and perhaps push some interest my way.  It would be a great thing to have Paramount contact me asking if I want to work on a script for them.  A great thing indeed.  I want people saying, “where the heck did this writer come from and why haven’t we heard of him yet!”

Until I hear back from Shane I’m moving back to my novel, working to get the final words added into the first draft.  Hopefully I’ll be able to get it finished by the end of the week.  I’m guessing, barring snags, I’ll be able to send it out to my proofreaders by the weekend.  I think I have a good mix of proofers, some like SF, some like Romance, some like both.  It’ll be interesting to see what the feedback is like.  My sister in law loved the first 20 pages I gave her.

Speaking of, we heard a piece of news on the personal front that our sis in law is pregnant.  Awesome!  I’m sure my bro will make a great Dad.  Like me, he had a good teacher.  We wish them all the best of luck and I’ll likely be either the cool uncle or the crazy one.  The one that teaches the bad habits, makes monsters for movies and has all the cool toys hanging on walls.  I’m sure in a few years the kid will want to watch Uncle Dan and Aunt Jayne making monsters, just like our daughter does now.

And that’s it for the news of me for now.  Tune in next time where hopefully I’ll have good news on both the script and the novel.

D

August 7, 2009

And The Script Looms

Filed under: Uncategorized — danielrdavis @ 1:47 pm

Since I haven’t written an update on here in a while I figured it was about time I do so.  The novel had to take a minor backseat…well, it’s more like riding shotgun, but is reclined back and enjoying the ride with a little nap.

The script I didn’t have to work on I found myself having to not only work on, but get caught back up on schedule.  The people wanting to give the film a $6mil budget wanted some changes to the script, but I was told I didn’t need to worry about it, since I was going out of town when they wanted the rewrites started.  Cool.  So I went on my trip and didn’t worry about things…and that was my first mistake.

Then, I get back from our little trip to Indiana and Chicago and get asked if I think I can work on the script AND write at least 40 pages of rewrites in a half a week…  Seems the guys wanting to front the money for the film run a tight ship and were on a schedule where they wanted 25 pages revised per week and the person who was chosen for rewrites gave them seven.  Yep, seven pages.  I can sort of see why he gave them seven, seeing as he started rewriting the entire script from scratch when that wasn’t what was needed.  However, it lost him a job.

So, I donned my Writerman cape, the superhero cape that has the quill and inkpot insignia on the back, put my fists on my hips, struck a heroic pose and I got to work.  I didn’t take off my glasses like Clark Kent does because unlike him, I actually need them to see.  I burned through the changes and additions, even though I didn’t have a really good idea of what they wanted besides more action and gore and got them their 40 pages by the weekend…I’d started on Wednesday.  Of course, they loved them.  Supposedly some minor changes to be done later, but they liked the changes a lot.  That was only last weekend.

This week I not only got them the rest of the way caught up, but put them ahead of their schedule.  I’d say possibly another week and I’ll have the rest of the script retooled, which puts them ahead of schedule by about a week, which is enough time to get the third draft possibly done, depending on how complex their changes are and whether they give me a good idea as to what they want.

The script itself is coming out to be around 120 pages, which by script writing protocol comes out to be supposedly a 2 hour film.  It likely won’t be, since creative editing and minor cuts, and dissolves, line delivery speed, action sequence speed, etc, can go a long way to making a film a bit shorter.  It’ll still likely come down to being an hour and fifty minutes probably; a respectable length for a feature film, especially one of this caliper, which can easily find distribution and theater play, if it’s filmed well.  Fingers crossed.

I’ve been told that the writing credit may glean a decent sum of money as well, so that was the real deciding factor for picking the project back up and setting the novel aside for a time.  Still, I’m getting antsy to get back to the novel.  I was almost finished with the first draft.  Another seven thousand words, possibly and I would have been done.  I think I’m going to take a break from the script for a day, since it’s ahead of schedule and work on the novel a bit today.

One thing is certain though, I am a little nervous about the lack of solid numbers, as far as the pay goes.  I’d rather have a definite number on that instead of a possible number.  Call me paranoid, but I’ve been screwed over before working film and I quit working on a novel that has great potential to do the rewrites.  I’ve been told in the past that a beginning author could gain a contract of around $17k on a first novel, so setting it aside is a big decision and possibly detrimental.  So again, my fingers are crossed for a decent paycheck from this.  If it’s not much more than a few hundred bucks I’ll be pretty annoyed.  With luck I’ve impressed these guys and they’ll pay decent to keep me interested in working with them in the future.

And there you have it.  There’s the skinny on what I’ve been up to instead of finishing my novel.  Hopefully I’ll be able to get back to it soon and get the thing published.  Stay tuned.

D

July 8, 2009

Rogue 5 Word Count

Filed under: writing — danielrdavis @ 10:59 pm
Tags: , , ,

Got 4,626 words today. I’m drained. I was saddened earlier with everything I had to do to my characters, nearly crying. I did get teary though. The final scenes are shaping up nicely. Last chapter coming up and then I add a couple scenes I wanted to add and do my rewrites, then send it to people for feedback. I’m SOO close!


72254 / 80000 words. 90% done!

July 9th, 2009

And with a resounding HOORAHH, it’s finished. Sort of. The last chapter was 3,281 words and was a fun one to write. The last three chapters are gonna be those “just one more chapter!” chapters that people will not be able to put down! I’m very confident that this book’s just going to kick major butt! It’s a great read and I think people will enjoy it. Now I have to add 3 more scenes and then do edits. After I do my edits I send it to folks who will hopefully give me feedback, then more edits, then I go to look for either an agent or a publisher. I actually fully plan on having it done and sent off by the middle of next month. Yep.

So, the MS so far is 75,535 words and I’m sure it’s going to hit 80,000 once I get the extra scenes added and do my edits. It’s 182 pages now and should top 200 after scenes and edits. It loses about 20 pages if I change the font to Times New Roman, but that shouldn’t bother it too much. Guess it depends solely on the size of the font they use during printing.

I am completely and utterly pumped up! I can’t wait!

75535 / 80000 words. 94% done!

Rogue 5 Excerpt

Filed under: writing — danielrdavis @ 3:40 pm
Tags: , , , ,

Alright, here’s a small excerpt of the WIP.  I don’t like how this formats it, but what can ya do.  It’s only in the first draft stage, but I figured I’d put it up here for anyone following along.  The work is a Space Opera Sci-Fi Romance novel that I hope to have finished and ready to go quite soon.

Rogue 5

       Servos whined and jet retros flared as the battle suit pirouetted in a dizzying one-eighty to face the Palantine class suit that had just blasted by.  Its strafing run had just missed her and she wasn’t about to give it a second chance.  The targeting crosshairs came up immediately and she could hear the low growl of the auto-cannon as it sprayed a barrage of 50 mm rounds at the target.

       The Palantine class suit was one of the largest and newest the Core had to offer.  It was decked out with the new 60 mm auto-cannon, as well as a heavier frame and plenty of armor to go around.  It also sported a rocket launcher set in the left shoulder and retractable laser cannon in the left forearm.  The whole thing looked bulky and squat, but Ahlia Jensen had to admit, it was impressive.  Unfortunately for the pilot inside it, however; it was slower than her suit and it caught nearly the full barrage in the body and right leg.  Then again, she thought, there wasn’t much out there that was faster than her suit.

       A warning beep chimed through her helmet receiver and she instinctively shot her suit sideways as another suit, this one a lighter Reaver class, fired at her from above.  She heard the multiple ‘punk-punk’ sound of rounds slamming into her suit.

       “Blast!” She swore as she banked, flipping over and extending the suit’s left arm.  The hand retracted as the rocket pod in the forearm opened to send eight seeker rockets streaking toward the Reaver.  The Reaver went evasive, firing another barrage, this time at the rockets, but four still got through.  The Reaver lit up with explosions, debris flying in all directions.

       Ahlia hated space combat.  It always made her feel dizzy.  She far preferred ground combat where up was up and down was down.  In space, there was no proper direction sense and rarely were there obstacles to use as cover.  An enemy could come from anywhere.  Thankfully her tracking computer had picked up the Reaver and the speed of her suit kept damage to a minimum.

       She was still tracking the Palantine, but it had found another opponent at the moment and was occupied.  The heads-up-display showed the rest of her team busily skimming through the combat, tearing into the enemy wherever they could.  Rogue 5 was the best freelance team out there working for the Secession Worlds.  Under-equipped and under-powered, they were still more than a match for the units from the Core.  All the firepower in the cosmos didn’t amount to squat without skill to back it up and Rogue 5 had that in spades.

       “Ahlia!” The com squawked.  It was Dakarn.  “That blasted Palantine’s ridin’ me hard!  Think you can lend a hand?”

       “On my way.” She fired the jets, finding Dakarn’s signal in the HUD and shot full speed toward the fight.  If her suit had the usual controls that all others had, her knuckles would be white, gripping the stick.  As it was, her hands were slid into two sleeves in the control chair and her helmet was integrated into the seat.  This was the reason why she was the only one allowed inside her cockpit.  This was her secret.  It was a big one.  And if the Core learned it, things would quickly become far more complicated for her.

       She blasted through the combat far quicker than the enemy forces could even react.  She raised the auto-cannon and sent a steady hail of rounds at the Palantine as it harried Dakarn’s lighter Warrior class suit.  Rounds slammed into the Palantine as it wheeled around and away from the assault.  It went evasive, dodging the attack with far more skill than she’d seen before in a Core pilot.  Still, her Valiant was faster.  It was far older than anything in this combat, but was still the top of the line, and she’d refitted the suit with a few little extra tricks as well.

       The left shoulder plate of the Palantine lifted and several seeker rockets came at her in their twisting evasive pattern.  She fired the auto-cannon, taking out all but two.  The last two exploded just in front of her cockpit.  She’d only barely brought up the fighter defense shield in time.  The shield was not standard issue, having been part of a fighter pod, but it did its job well.  Unfortunately, it had also overloaded and would not be available again this fight.  Still, it was enough and did what she’d hoped.  The Pilot of the Palantine had paused.

       She fired the stabilizers and righted herself, firing another barrage of 50 mm rounds before releasing the auto-cannon and streaking toward the Palantine while the cannon slid back and up to stow itself behind the right shoulder of her suit.

       The Palantine could do little more than raise its arms in defense from the barrage, taking the brunt of the damage in the heavily armored forearms.  Before the pilot could react, Ahlia was on him, an energy blade extending from the top of the right forearm of the suit.  She drove the blade up into the left shoulder joint of the Palantine repeatedly and its left arm spiraled away, spinning through space. She hammered into the side of the suit, slowly tearing away at the heavy armor.  Her HUD rewarded her with a number of damage tallies on the Palantine’s systems.

       The Palantine’s right arm came around quickly and hammered her with its auto-cannon and the jet engine fired in its left foot, driving its knee up hard into Ahlia’s Valiant, pushing it away.  Then it fired both jets in a sitting position, the feet aimed at Ahlia.  The force of the engines firing pushed her back further and she was forced to fire retro stabilizers to keep from being pushed back violently.  Warning beeps went off and she went evasive, several rounds from the Palantine’s auto-cannon striking her suit before she was able to get clear.  The pilot had fired the weapon one-handed as a distraction while he streaked away.

       “Yeah!  Suck on that, dredge!  Should we pursue?” Came Dakarn’s voice over the com. A warning came up on Ahlia’s HUD.  A Core carrier was shunting in.

       “No. Leave him. They’ve got reinforcements.” Ahlia opened all channels to her team. “This is Jensen.  We’re pulling out.”

June 17, 2009

Rogue 5 Word Count

Filed under: writing — danielrdavis @ 4:34 am
Tags: ,

Just figured I’d add a daily word count update. Got 2,398 words today. If I have more time later I’ll add more to it.

4520 / 30000 words. 15% done!

June 2nd, 09

Got 1,808 words today.

6385 / 30000 words. 21% done!

June 3rd, 09

2,635 words, possibly a little more.

9001 / 30000 words. 30% done!

June 4th, 09

Only 1,212 words today, but it got me where I wanted to be.

10209 / 30000 words. 34% done!

June 5th, 09

Only got 1,518 words today. Kind of a let down as it’s under my goal. Guess I work on Saturday.

11746 / 30000 words. 39% done!

June 6th, 09

Felt bad that I didn’t get word count on the 5th, so I worked a Saturday and got 2,521 words. I feel better now.

14267 / 30000 words. 48% done!

June 8th, 09

Sunday I worked a little, even though I was taking a day off, but it was a meager 943 words. Then on the 8th I got 4,027 words. Did a happy dance. Got closer. Realized my rough is going to go over the word count likely.

19293 / 30000 words. 64% done!

June 9th, 09

Okay. Got 2,784 words today. Unfortunately, I’m looking at the thing and I think it’s more like going to be 40,000 words long…at least I hope it won’t be any more than that. If it is I may actually expand it instead of shrinking it and make it into a full novel. Still, I’d love to see it in the anthology, and I do tend to be wordy when I write, so perhaps it’ll shrink up a bit in edit. We’ll see. If it’s gonna be 40k words then I’m only halfway done, but we’ll see when we get there. I project perhaps another 4-6 days to get to the 30k mark, depending o how much I end up writing each day. I’m averaging around 2-3k with an occasional 4k, so we’ll see how it goes.

22117 / 30000 words. 74% done!

June 10th, 09

Word count for today is 2,703. Some of it was a minor scene rewrite, so it won’t come out exactly right on the count, but it fixed a plot issue.

24283 / 30000 words. 81% done!

June 11th, 09

So I got 3,785 words today. I may not have changed the word count a lot because some of it was a rewrite, but it made the scene a million times better as a result. The novella is quickly becoming a full length novel. Ah well. Gonna be sweet regardless. I can’t wait to see this monster finished!

27114 / 30000 words. 90% done!

June 16th, 09

Just figured I’d restart the post above the other. Anyway, I had a bit of a vacation, so it’s been a couple days. Had a trip to WV and then my wife’s Birthday, so didn’t write, but I’m back in the saddle, sort of. I have to split my time between writing and cleaning/prep for a little party. So, the writing has dropped a little, but I’m still plugging away. Got 1,088 words today. In truth I’m nowhere near 94% done, but I’ll adjust the count once I hit the current goal of 30k words. It’s coming along excellently. I hope it ends up being well received when it’s finished.

28212 / 30000 words. 94% done!

June 17th, 09

Got 1,937 words today. Not bad. Got through a big battle. Bout to learn some important info. Bout to lose some friends. Bout to deal with some revealing moments. And reached 30k words, so you’ll notice I added another 10k to the goal.

30139 / 40000 words. 75% done!

June 18th, 09

2,294 words today. All in all a productive day. Cleaned up three rooms and got the word count I was hoping for.

32431 / 40000 words. 81% done!

June 19th, 09

Got 1,837 words. Not quite 2k, but close and I’m not complaining considering I was also making cakes and cleaning and it was an information segment. I call them information segments when there’s info given or revelations…er, revealed. No writing tomorrow or likely Sunday as well, so I’ll see you Monday.

34275 / 40000 words. 86% done!

June 22nd, 09

So I got in the zone today, that mystical place where all I can see is the screen the keyboard and my flying fingers and tore through 4,406 words. That makes the total 38,681 and next time I’ll be raising the goal again up to 50k. Tomorrow’s gonna be an outdoor day, so my count will be a little low, but I’ve got to get into the garden and weed, plus gotta fix my mower.

38681 / 40000 words. 97% done!

June 23rd, 09

I got 2,110 words today, putting me over the 40K mark, so that goal goes up to 50K. On the downside, the mower is broken and I don’t know what’s wrong with the clutch. Now the battery is dead too, so it looks like the grass will be ignored for another few days. It’s getting pretty high. If it gets too high I won’t even be able to cut it with the deck raised and I’ll have to get my Dad to come by with the bush hog mower. Got a lot of weeding done today though and the potatoes mounded, so that’s a good thing.

40829 / 50000 words. 82% done!

June 24th, 09

Well, it was a close one, but I ended up hitting 2,469 words today, which takes me to 43,309. It was going so slow I nearly stopped at 1,400, but after gardening a bit I was able to come back in and focus a little more. I’ve been half asleep in a fog all day, which made it tough. Got 6 rows of cucumbers put in and a bunch more words written. Not bad.

43309 / 50000 words. 87% done!

June 25th, 09

2,225 words today. I’m now at 109 pages and 9 chapters. 45,569 total words not counting chapter headings. Still going. Maybe 2/3 to 3/4 of the way there now.

45569 / 50000 words. 91% done!

June 26th, 09

Only got 1,091 words today. It was a rough day. The scene needed a lot of thought and it took pretty much all day to get through it. At least I hit 1k. Still, I wish it had been more. Tomorrow should be better.

46815 / 50000 words. 94% done!

June 27th, 09

1,432 words today. Just started chapter 10. Adding a scene I didn’t plan on, but it made sense to add it, so it’s going in. I’m resigned to the fact that it’s gonna be too big for a novella, so I’m just gonna go for it. I’ll probably go back and add more scenes in later, once I get the story finished. It’s shaping up to be a sweet story! Next time I write, I’ll be…you guessed it, raising the goal again!

48261 / 50000 words. 97% done!

June 29th, 09

Got 2,825 words today. It was hairy for a while, but I worked late and got the count. It was a scene that was sort of needed, but I wasn’t sure about and I’m through it. I feel slightly drained now. Ah well, tomorrow’s another day. I’ve raised the goal total, as I’m now past the 50k mark. YIPPEE!

51106 / 60000 words. 85% done!

June 30th, 09

Wrote 2,434 words today and tomorrow, for those paying attention, I may add a little excerpt. Maybe the first page or so. Something to whet the appetite and show you what I’ve been all going on about. Stay tuned.

53522 / 60000 words. 89% done!

July 1st, 09

2,871 words. My wife really wanted me to finish a scene after I read up to where I stopped, so we ordered pizza, I watched a couple episodes of Genesis Climber Mospeada and continued on. I know I mentioned an excerpt, but I’ll wait a bit on that. It’s coming though. Honest.

56401 / 60000 words. 94% done!

July 6th, 09

Well, on Friday I was a little distraught over only getting 930 words. I was sort of down about a couple things in the story, but I think the time off was good. Came back today with a whopping 4,750 words, so I’m completely psyched now. What’s more, I’ve reached the final conflict of the book. Even better, I’ve hit another benchmark. EVEN BETTER, I’ve gone over 150 pages, so, yay me!

62155 / 70000 words. 89% done!

July 7th, 09

I…am…exhausted! I just finished writing an entire chapter, 5,473 words, probably a third to a half of the final combat scenes! I’m purely and utterly, mentally and physically…and metaphysically drained. I hope the finale of this book doesn’t give people heart attacks. I need a drink!

67628 / 70000 words. 97% done!

June 10, 2009

Work Station

Filed under: writing — danielrdavis @ 4:40 pm
Tags: ,

This is just a minor break from the word count, but it will be continued in the post below, so keep watching it climb.

A while ago some of the authors on Magical Words decided to post a pic of their work stations and I felt, since I got myself a new desk that I’d do the same here. It will likely evolve as time goes by, but this is it as it stands now.

Work Station

Anyway, what I’m working on is the new project that the word count is for. I’ve got my coffee cup and warmer there on the desk. Taped to the upper portion of the desk are pics of my daughter and wife, showing me one of the reasons why I’m writing in the first place. Those papers clipped to the side of the desk is my current project synopsis and sitting on the desk is the characters, weapons, ships, etc, that go in the story.

On the wall there is a picture of me in costume at a haunted orchard we helped with last October and beside it is a picture of the cover of my RPG supplement I wrote, should it ever see the light of day. Hanging there between them is one of those cool little pirate heads you see sometimes hanging at bars or restaurants. My step mother’s parents gave it to me for Christmas because they knew I was writing about pirates. Below all that is a giant artists clipboard with a map on it for one of my other writing projects.

It’s hard to see, but between the pill bottles and pens on my desk, there’s a mug for Hobgoblin Ale that my sister got me for Christmas. Don’t tell her I’m not using it to drink out of. It’s made in China and I don’t wanna take the chance they colored it with lead paint. But it’s sweet and I like the thing and so it’s got some wrapped Werther’s coffee candy in it.

There’s a little pirate standing on my monitor. The papers are mostly writing and the one hanging out is my writing tally worksheet. The books are pretty much all game book as of now, but I’m considering moving them to my other cabinet and putting the writing book up there.

The pills are those which keep me in a semblance of health, because of the Crohn’s disease.

OH! The pirate flag. My Dad and step mother gave me that and it’s one of my favorites. We have a couple Jack Rackham flags around that we used for our pirate wedding, but the ‘Dead Men’ flag is my favorite.

Then there’s my junk shelf that’s there to the side that the flag is attached to. It’s got a bunch of stuff that I kind of use, but don’t want on my desk. It’s a mess.

And that’s about it, in a nutshell. Not depicted is the cork board that’s attached to the wall above the back of the desk that has various business cards, pictures I’ve drawn, a calendar and other stuff.

And that’s it. Keep watching the post below, WORD COUNT, to keep track of my progress as I continue to write the soon to be awesome tale, Rogue 5. Once it’s done I’ll toss a blurb out here for it. Check back.

Edit:

Just moved my books and wanted to list the books I have at hand:

These aren’t necessarily books I’m recommending, just books I have at my disposal.

2002 Writer’s Market
Arms and Armor of the Medieval Knight – David Edge & John Miles Paddock
Bo, Karate Weapon of Self-Defense – Fumio Demura
Book of Legendary Spells – Elbee Wright
Building Believable Characters – Marc McCutcheon
Casebook of Abnormal Psychology – John Vitkus
Disguise Techniques – Edmund A. Macinaugh
Filmmaking for Dummies – Brian Michael Stoller
Flexible Weapons – John Sanchez
Forgotten English – Jeffrey Kacirk
Gaelic Language on Cassette
Getting Your Book Published for Dummies – Sarah Parsons Zackheim & Adrian Zackheim
Mastering Witchcraft – Paul Huson
Mirriam-Webster’s Dictionary
Pirates of the Caribbean – Cruz Apestigui
Pirates, Terror on the High Seas from the Caribbean to the South China Sea – Various
Rodale’s Illustrated Encyclopedia of Herbs – Various
Roget’s Super Thesaurus 2nd Ed.
Secrets of the Ninja – Ashida Kim
The Druids – Peter Berresford Ellis
The Master Book of Candle Burning – Henri Gamache
The Writer’s Brief Handbook 2nd Ed. – Rosa/Eschholz
Writers INC – Sebranek/Meyer/Kempre
Writing Romance – Vanessa Grant
Writing Science Fiction & Fantasy – Crawford Kilian

Then there’s a lot of reference material in the various RPG books I own. Many of them have done their own research while writing those books.

D

June 1, 2009

Word Count

Filed under: Uncategorized — danielrdavis @ 8:31 pm

Just figured I’d add a daily word count update. Got 2,398 words today. If I have more time later I’ll add more to it.

4520 / 30000 words. 15% done!

June 2nd, 09

Got 1,808 words today.

6385 / 30000 words. 21% done!

June 3rd, 09

2,635 words, possibly a little more.

9001 / 30000 words. 30% done!

June 4th, 09

Only 1,212 words today, but it got me where I wanted to be.

10209 / 30000 words. 34% done!

June 5th, 09

Only got 1,518 words today. Kind of a let down as it’s under my goal. Guess I work on Saturday.

11746 / 30000 words. 39% done!

June 6th, 09

Felt bad that I didn’t get word count on the 5th, so I worked a Saturday and got 2,521 words. I feel better now.

14267 / 30000 words. 48% done!

June 8th, 09

Sunday I worked a little, even though I was taking a day off, but it was a meager 943 words. Then on the 8th I got 4,027 words. Did a happy dance. Got closer. Realized my rough is going to go over the word count likely.

19293 / 30000 words. 64% done!

June 9th, 09

Okay. Got 2,784 words today. Unfortunately, I’m looking at the thing and I think it’s more like going to be 40,000 words long…at least I hope it won’t be any more than that. If it is I may actually expand it instead of shrinking it and make it into a full novel. Still, I’d love to see it in the anthology, and I do tend to be wordy when I write, so perhaps it’ll shrink up a bit in edit. We’ll see. If it’s gonna be 40k words then I’m only halfway done, but we’ll see when we get there. I project perhaps another 4-6 days to get to the 30k mark, depending o how much I end up writing each day. I’m averaging around 2-3k with an occasional 4k, so we’ll see how it goes.

22117 / 30000 words. 74% done!

June 10th, 09

Word count for today is 2,703. Some of it was a minor scene rewrite, so it won’t come out exactly right on the count, but it fixed a plot issue.

24283 / 30000 words. 81% done!

June 11th, 09

So I got 3,785 words today. I may not have changed the word count a lot because some of it was a rewrite, but it made the scene a million times better as a result. The novella is quickly becoming a full length novel. Ah well. Gonna be sweet regardless. I can’t wait to see this monster finished!

27114 / 30000 words. 90% done!

May 30, 2009

Starting a New Project

Filed under: Uncategorized — danielrdavis @ 1:10 am

Greetings,

I’ve started the new project.  What is it, you may ask?  Well, maybe you won’t, but I’ll tell you a bit about it anyway.  I find myself writing romance at the moment, sci-fi Space Opera romance, to be specific.  It’s a collaboration between my wife and I.  We’re hoping it’ll be accepted for an anthology.  It’s supposed to be novella length and supposed to be submitted by August 10th.  I figure if I keep plugging away at it at the rate I have the past 2 days we’ll get it there.  Yesterday I hit 2,122 words on it.  Today I feel as though I didn’t do any work on it whatsoever, even though I wrote the entire synopsis I’ll be using as the backbone of the story.  The synopsis weighed in at 3,692 words, so it’s got a little meat on its bones already…sort of like ligaments and gristle and such.  I still can’t help but feel like I didn’t accomplish much on the story though, even though I wrote over 3500 words just today.  I think it’s because I’m used to writing the story itself without working up a synopsis.  Usually the synopsis is sitting up in my head already, but the past couple stories I’ve started on I’ve decided to try writing out the synopsis first.  It seems to have its plusses and minuses.

To me, strangely, writing a synopsis feels kinda like pulling teeth, a pain that seems to take forever while sitting in an uncomfortable chair.  I know, get a more comfortable chair, you say.  Believe me, I’ve thought about it, but the one I’d like to have costs a little more than I’ve got and I just can’t justify getting it yet.  Maybe when something gets published I’ll actually feel like I deserve it.

Anyhoo, the story sounds pretty good so far.  I’ve strayed a little from some of the standard tropes to try and make it different enough so it’s not just one more spaceship commander/pilot blah of the starship boobyprize.  Hopefully the editor won’t look at it and say, wha…?  I’m sure they won’t, but you never know.  I like it so far and it seems a little different, but it also has a couple minor similarities here and there to other things.  Nothing major.  Mostly the same similarities that most tales have.  After all, you can point to just about any story out there and say it’s similar to something else.  Even Star Wars is similar to stories that have come before it.  My only real hope is that it’ll get accepted and people will like it.  I’d like to be kept in mind for other publishing opportunities, should they like it enough.

Now, my biggest thought is whether I should publish it under a pen name or not.  If I want to use my name in the mainstream sci-fi or fantasy market without becoming “that guy that writes love stories,” I’m wondering if it’d be better to go with a pen name or a shortening of my name.  It’d be easy enough to just shorten my first name, but I’d definitely want to keep the last name because I want to publish this as a collaboration piece with my wife and have both our names in the byline.  So I may just shorten my name anyway just to be safe.

I’ll keep you posted.

D

2122 / 30000 words. 7% done!

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