Tag Archives: amity dawn

Amity Dawn and the Great Manuscript Disaster of 2014

So, recently, I decided to pick up Amity Dawn again. I hadn’t touched it in months, and most of that was conversion from first to third person. I had about 25k to 30k words, eight full chapters, written. Sure, it needed a lot of work, especially the post-conversion chapters, but the switch had to be made. It’s hard to tell a story with such a broad scope from a first person perspective. I felt like limiting the perspective and head-hopping from chapter to chapter wasn’t doing the message justice, so I made the switch. The writing is harder, but I think the story will benefit.

Anyway, as I was saying, I decided to work on Amity Dawn for the first time in months, so I went to open the Scrivener file–and it was gone. I hunted high and low; Google Drive, Dropbox, all of my flash drives, my external hard drive, anywhere it could have feasibly been saved, I checked. Nothing. First, there was panic, then tears, then rage, and finally… resignation. Amity Dawn was gone, all almost-30k of it. I deliberately use cloud storage so these things don’t happen, and in four years of doing so, I’ve never had this happen.  I suppose I was over due for a horrifying, gut wrenching, tear-inducing catastrophe. Well, now I’ve paid my dues for the next few years, and catastrophe had better rein itself in. I don’t have time for this shit.

Moving on! Regardless of my whirlwind of pain and tears, I still wanted to work on Amity Dawn. Kadri was calling  me, and I still had my outline, which, thankfully, had been printed and was stuffed in my Bag of Holding. So, I began again. It needs work. I have to include elements I had forgotten about and never made note of. I need to add depth and description and dialog, but the basics are all there. Everything I wanted to convey. Everything that needed running through. I’m just starting chapter three and my manuscript is about 6k so far.  I have a long way to go, but it’s something that has, despite the grief, given Amity Dawn new life. I can see it clearly and retain my drive.

More importantly, I’ve re-learned the “back up your work” lesson. Following in the wake of a few friends, I’ve taken to 750words.com to drive me to keep writing. That’s actually what this blog post is contributing to tonight. While it won’t reach the full 750, I plan to use the rest for chapter three of AD. It’s refreshing to have a daily goal, instead of floundering with no direction. Discipline is nice, and I like getting badges and achievements for doing stuff–it’s the gamer in me. Honestly, if you have trouble getting going, try 750words.com. The first month is free so you can get a taste of whether it’s right for you, and, after that, is only $5 a month. (I have to note that I’m not getting paid to say that, and I’m not getting any special treatment. I’m just finding that it’s really working for me, and, if it works for you, too, I want to help facilitate that.)

Moral of the Story: Get back on the horse. Don’t let setbacks get you down. Keep fighting, keep writing, and back up your goddamn work.

Have you ever lost a significant amount of work to an accident like this? How did you get past it?

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NaNoWriMo Poll!

NaNoWriMo approacheth!  I don’t know if I can do a full-fledged NaNo this year, what with school and work, but I’ll give it a shot.  What do you think this year’s NaNoWriMo should be?

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Amity Dawn, GoFundMe, and JaxPPD!

Another progress report, guys.  I know you’re getting sick of them.  I’ll have new content for you soon!  Right now, I’m focusing on getting ready for school, muddling through draft one of Amity Dawn, and fundraising.  It’s been an odd summer; one filled with motivation, support, and love, and it just keeps getting better.

So, let’s start with Amity Dawn.  It’s still a working title, until I can find the one that pops at me.  I’m working through chapter 7 at this point, and getting ready to convert chapters 1-4 into third person perspective.  Kadri is just about to confront the primary villain for the first time, after muddling through lead-up conflicts lackeys for the first six chapters.  I’m excited.  This novel is taking shape slowly, coming to life from the outline I began a year ago this month.  Unfortunately, I put it down for a bit too long, but better late than never, right?  Before long, I hope, I’ll be hunting down beta readers.

As for school, I still need to raise some money to buy my books.  I’m still selling Byzantine chain bracelets for $20 a piece (+$1.50 for shipping within the US).  You can see the details of that in this post.  Alternatively, you can visit my GoFundMe page and check out some of the smaller donation amounts.  They come with neat perks.  =]

Lastly!  I may be sharing a table with another writer friend of mine, J. Meridith Harmon, who has recently released his new novel Snyper: A Matter of Caliberat Jacksonville Pagan Pride Day!  Check it out on Amazon!  Anyway, I’ll be volunteering at PPD regardless, so you should come visit if you’re in the Jacksonville area on Sept 22. =]  If we do get the slot, I’ll be selling bracelets, G&L bookmarks, and possibly prayer beads (if I can settle on a couple of patterns I like, I’m being fickle).  It’s going to be awesome.

See you kids around. <3

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Refinement & Personal Growth

I’ve got an update!  Well, there are several updates, really, but this is the first one.

I’ve recently enrolled in Southern New Hampshire University’s creative writing BA program.  Awesome, right?  I know, I know.  I’m still an active supporter of “you don’t need a degree to write a novel.”  It’s true.  You don’t.  You do, however, need experience in editing and refining your work to make it appealing to people.  Some of us have more trouble with that than others, and so I’ve decided to go back to school for something worthy of my passion.  I’ve tried so hard to look for a degree or certificate program that would be a quick fix to my lack of professional direction, but there’s nothing out there that really makes me happy.

Writing makes me happy.

Writing is what I spend my time doing and thinking about.

Helping other writers to write well is something I take pride in.  It’s rewarding for me.

I can’t help writers with any credibility if I don’t further educate myself.  I can’t edit and rewrite my work very well, either, if you want the truth, and some guided direction is going to do wonders for me.  I just know it.  I want to be able to bring the benefit of these courses to others.  I want to be able to help you, my readers, and anyone else who might stumble on this blog.

I also have an announcement!

INKWELL IMAGININGS HAS A NEW CHAPTER!

It’s true!  Our local writers’ group has spread from a small library in Southbridge, MA to three separate states!  I’d like to welcome Inkwell Imaginings – Oklahoma City to our ranks!  Honestly, we never thought it would ever get this far.  Now that it has, though, I’d like to talk to everyone about Inkwell.  I’ve told you about it before, I think.  It’s a group created for local fiction writers to gather socially, get their work critiqued by peers, and celebrate or commiserate over their stories.

Want an Inkwell in your town?  Let’s make that happen!  Keep an eye out for a post on “How to Create an Inkwell Imaginings Chapter Near You!”  I’ll include an FAQ about Inkwell, what we do, how to join or create your own, popular meeting formats, and how to contact me.

AMITY DAWN DOES NOT HAVE A NEW CHAPTER!

Don’t judge me, I’m getting there.  Chapter 6 will be done soon.  I’m debating on whether to go back and fix my first person chapters by putting them in third person, or if I should just write the whole thing, then go back and include it in my first-pass revision.  x_x Ah, writer problems.

Coming up next, a shameless plug for chain maille bracelets that will help me buy my school books… STAY TUNED! Same Bat time, same Bat channel.

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