My Current Writing Progress

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It has been a while since I have updated my writing progress, so I decided this would be a good time to do so. I just finished the first draft of a horror novel about a werewolf.  It is clearly a misshapen skeleton of a book at this point, but at least, it is done and can be developed and edited later. As indicated in my previous post, without words down on paper, there is nothing than can be revised.

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My writing goals for the first half of 2016 follow. First, I will revise my horror novel Evil Lives After, which would be its 9th draft and to continue submitting it to agents and publishers. If I have no success, I will then plan on self-publishing this book.  I believe it is time. Next I will revise the first book of my YA series and also submit it to agents.  I am not sure if submitting two books is recommended or not, but I am following my own plan of action.  We will see what happens. Finally, but definitely not least, I will write the first draft of the second novel of my YA series.

As long as I maintain the pace I have been keeping over the last few years, I should be able to accomplish these goals.  We will see at the end of June if I have reached the destination.

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Once More Unto the Breach, Dear Friends, Once More!

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http://www.movieclips.com/

Or should I say at least once more? (with thanks to William Shakespeare Henry V 3.1.1.)

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I have not posted for a while about the progress of my horror novel Evil Lives After, and I thought I should give a report on what was happening with it. I am receiving excellent editing and feedback on my previous draft, which I deeply appreciate.  After having spent several months in primarily working on a first draft on another novel and on revisions of my second novel, I realized I needed to get back to Evil Lives After.  I am, therefore, now actively, cutting, adding, and revising to create the 8th draft.  I think this will be a much tighter, more compelling, and more frightening book than before.

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I suspect that completing the revisions of this draft will need a three to four month time frame.  I am sure that the book will be greatly improved after this process.  I will keep you updated on the progress.  For now, to revising I go!

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Another Milestone–100 posts!

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http://www.geodruid.com/3346772-hornbach-byggvaruhus-rissne-stockholms-lan-sverige

(I thought this was a very cool milestone marker!)

It has been a little less than a year since I began this blog, and I was not sure what to expect or how I would proceed.  I am proud to say that I have reached several milestones, including having over 2000 followers.  Also, my last post was number 100.

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I hope to reach the next 100 posts in a far shorter time span!  My goal is to write 3-4 posts per week in this coming year.

And thank you to everyone who is following this blog.  I appreciate all of you!

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http://snapcreativity.com/thank-you-card/

Drafts, Revisions, and Plans, Oh MY!

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I finished the first draft of a novel I have been working on the first part of the year. While it is very rough and in need of a great deal of work, it is time to put it aside for a while. I am not sure what my overall goals for this novel are, but at least I have completed the initial draft. So, I need to continue with the overall writing plan I put in place a while ago, one which I was not sure I would be able to maintain. So far, I have done it.

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This writing plan is to draft, as first drafts, two books per year. In addition to the drafting, I am also constantly working on revising previous books. I focus on one at a time, or at least I try to. My writing time is divided into drafting first, and then I work on revising. I have found that I am able to do this about 5 days a week.

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I had mentioned in an earlier post that I am also working on an academic book, but that is moving very slowly as I try to find necessary materials without which , it cannot move forward.  My drafting goal for the rest of the year, therefore, is to complete a first draft of a horror novel. It is a story I have had in mind for quite a while. In fact, the idea for it came from a dream I had, in which, in very cinematic fashion, I saw the entire ending of the story. It was like seeing a movie for free!

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My long range goal for this horror novel is to test the self-publishing waters with it. I still intend to try to be published traditionally, especially with my first two novels, but I decided it was time to spread out this writing venture and see what happens. That long range plan for the book will be to self-publish it sometime next year.

Let’s see how the carrying-out of my plan goes.

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A 3rd Draft Complete

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It always feels wonderful to reach a goal!  I had hoped to have completed the third draft of my Young Adult novel by the middle of this month, and I finished it on Wednesday!

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The next step in the process is to have it read by a few select readers and then return to the revision process.  I suspect the next draft will  take approximately 1-2 months, so accounting for reading times, I would like to have this draft (# 4) finished by the end of the summer.

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I am taking just the weekend off from drafting, and then I will return to the cycle of beginning a new novel.  I have several competing in my head to be the next one begun, so I am not yet sure which will win.  I will, however, choose and begin a first draft on Monday.  My goal for that draft is to have it finished by the end of the year.

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As a side note, I am working, albeit, very slowly on my academic book.  I am still trying to find a copy of the play I need, so more on that progress in the future.

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The No Strings Attached Award!

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I am honored to have been nominated for this award by Kritika Vashis.  From the Soul to the nib of the Pen

She is an excellent and creative blogger, and I am very thankful to her for this award.

“About this Award

The No Strings Attached Award was created by bloggers on the alfreds almanac blog. You can see the original post Here. A poll was posted with suggestions for the name of this new blog award, and bloggers voted on their favourite.

The No Strings Attached Award, was born.

There are no rules to accepting this award. You can choose to display your award on your blog home page. If you do this, you do not need to nominate any other bloggers, unless you wish to do so. You can thank the blogger that awarded you. You have the power to do whatever you want with this award. Once you have been nominated for it, you can then pass it on to others.

The No Strings Attached Award, is an acknowledgement of respect from one blogger, to another. If you are given this award, it means that a fellow blogger likes your work and your blog.

Thats it. Simple.”

This is quoted directly from https://thenostringsattachedaward.wordpress.com/about-this-award/

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I am nominating the following bloggers for the No Strings Attached Award. They are just some of the very fine bloggers I have had the honor of reading:

A Progress Report

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After I finished the piles of end of the semester grading, I was able to attack again the third draft of my Young Adult speculative fiction novel. Even though I had to put the writing aside briefly, I am still on the pace I had hoped for. I just reached 100 pages.

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I will continue to try to revise at least 10 pages a day though the rest of May. My target for this month is to reach at least 200 pages. If I can reach that goal, I will be very happy with my progress. I have given myself a little bit of wiggle room, since there are 12 more days left in this month, and if I do all 12 days, I would reach about 220 pages.

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Now, after the drum roll please, I hope that I have this draft done by the middle of June. It should be 250-300 pages. If I can finish that draft, then I put it aside as several people read it for me, and then soon again, I will begin the next draft. And the process of writing and revision will continue.

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The Versatile Blogger Award!

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I was recently nominated for The Versatile Blogger award by Ana Franco http://anaisthebookworm.wordpress.com.  Thank you very much Ana for the lovely thought!

This award is given to members of the blogging community who have shown imagination, commitment to blogging, and versatility in the use of their blogs.  It is meant to celebrate this kind of work and achievement.

Of course, there are rules to follow:

  • Show the award on your blog — done!
  • Thank the person who nominated you — done!
  • Share seven facts about yourself — done!
  • Nominate up to fifteen blogs — done!
  • Link their blogs, and notify them — done!

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Seven Random Facts about Me

I love the new Avengers movie!

I just began reading Umberto Eco’s on literature

Even though I hate very hot weather, I am looking forward to the summer, especially the first half, when my work load at school will be significantly lessened.

I will be teaching Shakespeare, so I am very, very happy about that.

I am looking forward to planting and attempting to grow tomatoes.  We will see how that goes; I am not a man with a green thumb.

I am looking forward to a getaway at some point in the not-too-distant-future with my beloved wife.

We just came from having excellent eggs benedict at a wonderful local diner called The Bacon Strip — in Coplay, PA.

Here are the bloggers I have nominated!

Anita & Jaw Dawes http://jenanita01.com/

Lynette Noni http://lynettenoni.com/

Rebecca McLaughlin  http://makawalli.wordpress.com

Never Less Than Everything  http://threehandsoneheart.wordpress.com

Beverly A. Young  http://ghosttalkblog.com

thanks

Once again, Thank you Ana Franco!

An Epiphany!

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Solutions to problems that I have been considering sometimes come to me at the oddest of moments. I have found answers to questions about writing or teaching while in the shower, in the bathroom, or just after waking up. I am sure this experience is not unique to me, and I suspect the subconscious mind working on a difficulty and then presenting the answer when it is ready might be the explanation for this phenomenon. What would Dr. Freud have to say about this?

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Recently while on a gallivant with my wife, a drive we take for relaxation with no particular place in mind and hoping to find back roads we haven’t yet explored, a solution to my second novel burst into my consciousness.

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I had written two previous drafts of this book, a Young Adult speculative novel, set extremely far in the future, but I felt unsatisfied with its structure. I have had several people read it and make extremely useful comments on the book. One asked me if there would be a sequel, and I realized that I was thinking in those terms. But I was still not certain about this one. What was it? A single novel? Two books?

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The answer came to me as we were cresting a hill in the beautiful back area of northeastern Pennsylvania. I said to my wife that I needed to tell her this solution so I didn’t lose it. This was one of the few times I went out without pad and pen, something I almost always have with me. She graciously listened, and I explained what burst into my mind.

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I now know the structure: it is a trilogy, and I know where the divisions are for each book. I now understand the arc of the entire trilogy, as well as the narrative arc of each text. I also know the antagonists of each piece as well as the overarching antagonist of the trilogy. As I talked it out, the answers solidified in my mind.

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So I am now working on the draft of the first book of the trilogy. I hope to have this done by the end of May or early June. We will see.

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A Goal Reached

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I wanted to finish a first draft of my third novel by the end of this month, and I have done that.  I am not impressed by the draft, because it needs a mountain of work.  I see numerous serious narrative issues that I will need to address in future drafts.  In fact, I am not sure if I will continue with this one–I have to let it percolate for a while before I decide what to do with it.

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This completion of the first draft does lead me directly to my next immediate writing goals.   I intend to attack the completion of the third draft of my second book, a Young Adult novel over the next couple of months.  I want to have a third version complete by the end of May, which is optimistic, or June at the very latest, which might be more realistic.  If the third rewrite moves well, I will then aim for formal editing, and perhaps, just maybe, begin submitting it.

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As the semester grows to a close,  I will soon be able to finish my grading work and devote more time to the work on this revision.  I hope I am able to complete this goal.