I Was A Middle Aged Writer

December 29, 2009

Starting Another Work

Filed under: Uncategorized,writing — danielrdavis @ 5:36 pm
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So I’m starting a new project. It’ll be slow going for a bit until we get through cleaning for New Year and prepping for January Christmas with out of town relatives, but I’m going to be tracking my progress again. It’s a Sci-Fi fantasy novel. Should be a one shot with possibilities for expansion added in.

In truth, I’ve already started it, but I’ve come to realize that the tracking I did on the last novel really helped me keep going. I started hitting the keys on this one during Thanksgiving, but set it aside for when I had more time to work on it. The first thing I’ll probably be doing on it is write up a good brainstorm on not only the world, but the villains, magic system, plot, everything. It’s going to need a lot of structure as far as that goes. I want to make sure the magic and the pantheon is worked up and at least makes enough sense that it’s not broken. The other thing I need to do is read Daily Life in Medieval Times. I’ll need at least a passing familiarity with a medieval setting beyond that found in an RPG. It’s going to be a higher magic type world, so there are likely conveniences I can use to fudge the lifestyle, but I do want to at least mimic a medieval setting.

However, I have another novel I need to work on and I may try to juggle them both. The other novel is an Urban Fantasy and unfortunately it sounds like UF is an easier sell in the current market. The market just seems flooded with UF to the point where I can’t pick up a book lately without discovering that it’s first person urban fantasy, usually with a female lead. Before anyone gets up in arms over that comment, keep in mind that I don’t mind them in general. I rather enjoy Kim Harrison’s Rachel Morgan series and Faith Hunter’s Rogue Mage and Skinwalker books, but I get tired of the same thing over and over again. And many of them are. The same, that is. The voice is the same, the writing’s the same, even many of the terms are the same. Jayne’s been picking some up from the library and really it just seems to be SSDA, same sh*t, different author. Change a few things, file off the serial numbers and you have a new novel. And they’re all selling. It makes me not want to touch first person urban fantasy with a ten foot pole unless I have something really “wowingly” (yes I know that’s not a word, but I’m channeling my inner Joss*) different. I just see an eventual future where peple are going to start seeing the same things I’ve noticed and get tired of the genre. I’d rather work on something else and plan for that eventuality.

So, I’m going to a setting that has been in decline for quite some time. I don’t know why I’ve suddenly been drawn to working on Science Fiction. It’s certainly not a desire to go with the underdog, though I’ve never been one to do anything the easy way. It’s not necessarily that I want to single-handedly champion the genre and try to bring it back into a golden age, but there’s just some strange appeal of working in something that’s not currently waterlogged, so to speak; something that’s not already saturating the market.

I walked into a local bookstore recently and checked the shelves. I was stunned that just about the only Sci-Fi I saw there were Extended Universes (BSG, Star Trek, Star Wars, etc). I remember a time when there was a lot of original sci-fi and sci-fi fantasy out there. I saw very little. This bothered me a bit because my finished (well, sort of finished) piece is sci-fi. I knew there was a lot more sci-fi titles in Romance and that’s what my novel qualifies as, but I started to wonder about mainstream sci-fi. I asked around (though I really should have known) of people in the business. I wondered if perhaps it was just the store in question. I was told that yes, the sci-fi genre has been in decline for easily 10 years. In a way it bothered me and it also got me to wonder if I should even try. I mean, if the publishers aren’t picking up much sci-fi then it’s that much more difficult to get published. But my stubborn streak now won’t let it go. I think I can write some quality sci-fi (focusing on space opera and fantasy aspects of course, I’m not big into hard science) and with a little luck get it published. I like the challenge, oddly enough.

And hey, it’s all about revolution. What goes around comes around. Sci-Fi was big once. Fantasy took center stage for a while. Now it’s Urban Fantasy. Who knows, perhaps it’s time for a resurgence of the sci-fi genre. It’s worth a shot anyway.

And so yes, you will be seeing another tracking session on here soon. One that will hopefully help me get another couple novels finished in the new year.

D


* Joss Whedon, creator of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, Firefly, Dollhouse and about a bajillion “Jossisms.”

December 16, 2009

Holiday Writing Woes

Filed under: Uncategorized,writing — danielrdavis @ 12:26 pm
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So, happy holidays to anyone reading. I decided to write a bit about my current inability to write. I know that sounds a bit like an oxymoron, but it’s true. The holidays are always busy for me and I have difficulty focusing on just one task, as I typically have many different tasks to deal with at the same time. This is frustrating for me because it feels like I’m not doing what I’m supposed to be doing (writing) and feels like I’m not getting anything accomplished.

I know what would help me write, but I can’t really start another word count tracking session, which worked phenomenally well for Rogue 5, while I’ve got so many other things to do. However, I may have to do just that starting tomorrow. I don’t like spinning my wheels. I need to finish the gift I started for my wife and got other gifts to make as well before the Christmas deadline. It’s just frustrating when I feel like I can’t get the writing done. What makes this all worse, is that it gets so cold in the house that I don’t feel like doing any of the work because I don’t take to cold well.

Ah well, enough whining for me. Gotta get that cake made.

I’ll update as time permits.

D

March 6, 2009

So, On That Time Issue…

Filed under: writing — danielrdavis @ 7:53 pm
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Yeah,

So, I think about restructuring my time and what ends up happening instead is that yet one more idea for a story pops into my head.  It always seems to happen this way.  That’s in part why I have some odd million (Maybe not that many) stories laying around the house and on zip disks here and there.  I love that I have so many stories in my head trying to get out, but could they just wait till I finish one of the older ones first?  I’m so practiced on writing beginnings that I have some of the greatest story beginnings around.  I have beginnings that can grab attention right off the bat, but unfortunately, that’s all I have.  Oh, I’ve got some short stories that I’ve finished at around 5-7k words and a couple novel beginnings coming in at around 15-20 pages, but no novels done and no place to send those short stories.

What’s popped into my head this time is straight fantasy.  It’s actually stemmed from seeing the multitude of urban fantasy hunter novels hitting the scene lately.  Don’t get me wrong, I love ’em.  I think they’re great and they work well, but most all of the hunter stories coming down the line lately are urban fantasy.  And fantasy is actually one of my favorite genres and it’s how I started writing in the first place.  So, why not a straight high fantasy hunter novel?

Now, I don’t know if it’s because Earth-centric urban fantasy is all the rage right now and straight fantasy is waning, but there’s just a lot of it out there all the sudden.  Maybe the straight fantasy novel will be harder to sell in today’s market.  I haven’t researched it.  What I do know is that I’m good enough to put some interesting twists into a fantasy novel to garner interest in it…as long as I can actually finish the thing.  Now I’ve got three projects I have to budget time for.  Hopefully no more ideas hit me for a little while.  Well…no, I can’t say that.  The day that I no longer have ideas is the day I just give up and become some crotchety old coot hollering on his porch about the good ol’ days.

D

March 4, 2009

Time Restructuring

Filed under: writing — danielrdavis @ 7:37 pm
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Well, looks like I may need to budget my time a bit more wisely and actually schedule myself certain writing tasks on certain days. We’re going to need to get our scripts finished for our movies, so I’m going to need to write on those as well. So, I may take the weekdays and split them up into perhaps 4 to 5 hour blocks of writing. This also means that distractions like the internet must be shut down during those times. This is the only way I’ll get anything done. I’m also going to need to start getting up earlier. If anyone out there knows of a good way to get some energy to do this I’m all ears. Seems like I want to wake up later and later and feel groggy if I don’t. It could be time for another B12 injection. Probably a vitamin supplement as well. Hopefully with some structure I’ll be able to get more done. My word count has been sparse, to say the least.

We’ll see,

D

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