18 January 2009

Online Class

Tuition & Fees: $600.

Required Book & Lab Manual: $335.

Assorted Notebooks, Pens & Binders: $25.

Going to Class at 4AM in My Pajamas: Prrrrriceless!


16 January 2009

Need Directions To The Nearest Plank...

...so I can walk off it, 'cuz I could really use a dip in the drink today.

It's been a helluva week. It started with a list of 5 papers to edit, submit and/or do something! with (as-soon-as-possible, thank-you-please), which soon grew to 7, then 8, then 10, which is as many as I normally deal with in a month.

Add to that another massive data entry project (which apparently counts as editing, don't ask me why...) and -- drum roll, please! -- a page proof! I knew it! I just knew there would be a page proof this week, since I'm insanely busy. There's always a page proof when I'm insanely busy. Never on a slow week. What fun would that be, anyway?

And then, there are the pirates.

I got frustrated with them for going full-blown novel on me, when all I wanted was a short story, so I fussed, pouted, and was generally very grumpy until they agreed to tone it down. And then I tried to cram them into a 500-word flash piece.

That sorta worked, because I actually FINISHED something for once. But I'm not sure it works as flash, and I'm thinking I'm going to rewrite it in short story form, but based on the flash storyline... if that makes any sense at all...

Probably not. But whatever.


11 January 2009

Pirates, Walk The Plank, Please

So I’ve already used up 3500 words of my 5000-word limit on the pirate story. That’s good, in a way, because I’ve written a whole bunch in the last few days and I don’t hate it and I love the characters, but…

I love the damn characters and – totally fucking predictably - they’re taking me WAY deeper into their adventures and lives than I have room or any business being in a short story. I mean, I could write 5000 words worth of just backstory! Seriously, if I manage to tell the story they’re wanting me to tell in less than 20,000 words, I will find a fucking plank and walk off it. Gah!

Part of the problem with me writing short stories, I think, is that I don’t read nearly enough of them on a regular basis. I just don’t have a good enough sense of how they’re put together to successfully put one together myself. I’m making an effort to correct that, but … well, there are only so many minutes here and there in a day during which I am not required to be doing something else.

*exasperated sigh*

Anyway, I’m not giving up (since I love the characters so damn much), but I think I’m probably going to have to sit down and think about what the bare bones of the story are.

And then start over.

*blows raspberries*

Some days it just sucks to be me, don’t it?


09 January 2009

Ta-Dah!! NaNo 2008 Complete! Finally!

It is not pretty. It is not even "right" most likely.

But for now, I don't care.

It's done! It's done! IT'S DONE!!!

I can move on. I can do something else now! I've started a pirate story... ??!?

I know: pirates - WTF, but cool! I'm hoping to cram it into 5000 words and submit it to Membra Disjecta for their March issue.

I'll let ya know how that goes... (Short stories are definitely not one of my strengths as a writer...)


04 January 2009

Aw, Crap....

Or: NaNo - I Hate It When That Happens

I just realized I took a bit of a wrong turn in my final climax/battle-to-the-death scene. A wrong turn that is going to cost me 1200 words that I spent the last, like, 3 or 4 days writing. Yeah. 1200 words totally wasted.

God damn it, but that SUCKS.

I think I'll go do something fun now. Like laundry or swabbing the kitchen.



03 January 2009

NaNo 2008 – The Final Stretch (I MEAN It!)

OK, I have swallowed my horror at not finishing the story in December and set a new goal of 85K words to reach the hallowed ground know as “The End”. That will add a little over 5000 new words. Which should be PLENTY, dammit.

I’ve got a pretty tight deadline for this – January 12th. That’s when my online Anatomy & Physiology class starts, and since I’ve been out of college for a shocking 14 years (*faints*), I think it’s going to take some adjustment to get used to that kind of brain activity and I doubt I’ll be up for writing much (at least, for a few weeks).

Anyway, if I reach The End before the 85K mark, I’ll go back and work on some of the new scenes I’ll have to add when I edit.

If I’m still not to The End at 85K, I’m just gonna throw a big, fat hissy fit.


01 January 2009

Happy New Year!

Well, I think I failed to complete even one of my 2008 goals, which is both depressing and surprising. I really thought they were good, achievable goals. Apparently not.

And now that I look back at them, I get the sense that they aren't as concrete as I thought they were when I made them. I mean, I said things like "complete and submit one short story", which is good as far as it goes, but still vague. WHICH stort story? Submit WHERE? Another goal was to complete an edit of either NaNo 2005 or NaNo 2006 - WHICH ONE? I needed to be that specific.

I also didn't set deadlines. I now see that as a real weakness in my plan. Deadlines get my ass in gear. Without them, I don't do much.

That in mind, this year I have made an effort to be really, really, really freakin' specific.

1. Complete the kestlebird story. A kestlebird is a mythical creature in my fantasy universe and I have had a bunch of ideas kicking around and one story started. But not completed. I will complete it this year. DEADLINE: Hmmmm.... let's say March 31st.

2. Get back on track with my writing course. It's Holly Lisle's Think Sideways course and it's fabulous and I'm weeks behind now, even though I'm doing the every-other-week option instead of the every-week option. I need to get back on track with it ASAP, because I'm starting an online anatomy and physiology class January 15th... ack! I can handle both. I think. But only if I get back on track, hence - DEADLINE: January 31, 2009.

3. One complete edit of NaNo 2008. There is a LOT to do on this one. First, I have to complete the first rough draft. The deadline for that is January 12, because my class starts on the 15th and I don't want to be trying to write a thousand words a day while also trying to spend 8 hours a week doing actual classwork. So that is Goal 3a. Goal 3b is to read through the draft and take notes on what to add, what to rewrite, new scenes needed, etc. The Goal 3b deadline is April 30th (I was going to say the 15th, but that's Tax Day, isn't it? Yeah. How 'bout I don't set myself up for failure there, eh?). Goal 3c is to take the notes from the read through and incorporate them chapter by chapter. I honestly have no idea how long that will actually take, but I'll set a deadline of September 3o, 2009, since I'll want to start planning for NaNo 2009 October 1 and will likely get very little else done after that.

OK, I'm going to stop there. That's probably as much as I can handle, so anything I would add (and I have a long list of things I could add) would be pointless.

Good luck to everyone with their goals!