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Category: The Chained Adept

Lost in the tepid swamp of niceness

Posted in Plot, The Chained Adept, and The Chained Adept

Lost in the swamp

There you are, writing along at a good clip, and suddenly you find your story buried in mud, all its energy lost.

Now, I'm still rather new at this fiction writing life — a bit shy of my first million words. Aside from working on the craft itself, which I enjoy, much of the challenge is understanding your own psychology well enough to control your productivity.

In my case, there are two issues: what to do when the story grinds to a halt, and how to avoid procrastination. Now, I don't know anyone who can successfully discipline their work habits through will alone (if we had that much will, we'd all eat healthy and exercise regularly, not to mention watch our budgets and clean our houses). Most of us are better off coaxing ourselves into a regular routine and lowering all barriers that might derail it.

Alas, I have an alarm system that slams a wall down in front of my creativity when it senses “wrong path taken” for the story. I push my way forward from that point with great difficulty and at my peril, and I've found it's always a mistake to do so.

It’s been a while…

Posted in Research, Structures of Earth, The Affinities of Magic, The Chained Adept, The Chained Adept, and The Visitor

TimeFliesMy, how time flies.

I've spent the last few months conducting a number of experiments and thought I'd mention them here.

Look for a summary of 2014 and plans for 2015 in separate posts.

Finally, I've decided to add progress meters (on the right) for short stories still in the submission process. When finally published by Perkunas Press, they will have full pages here and on the Perkunas Press website.

Social Media

I conducted a blitz for four months aimed at improving my Facebook and Twitter audience. Rather than advertising my books (bad form) except for the occasional sale, I focused on providing interesting content covering a wide array of topics. In other words, I posted about the things I like — archaeology, landscape, language, surrealism, and dozens of other subjects.

My Facebook friends said, “hey, neat!” and hardly grew at all. Twitter, on the other hand, where I had little presence, grew to hundreds of followers. That was gratifying, but the advice to “make friends and have conversations” still eludes me. I've found new people to follow, but conversations don't seem to make sense in that medium.

I also dabbled in Pinterest and lined up Tumblr and Instagram to explore, but I've eased up on this for now. When my next book is published, I'll do announcements on Twitter and Facebook, and see if I can detect any impact, especially from Twitter. If not, then this is not a great use of my time, and I should ratchet back to a more normal level (yet to be determined).

This blog has suffered as a consequence. I expect to be posting more regularly, and with a greater focus on actual news rather than just amusements and general items of interest.

Workshops & Lectures

I've become a real devotee of Dean Wesley Smith‘s workshops and lectures. His somewhat acerbic and dismissive manner sometimes requires accommodation, but he and his wife Kristine Rusch have an invaluable perspective on the publishing industry and the important issues for long-term fiction writers. It's always difficult to find a mentor whose sensibility accords with your own, and these two do it for me, covering both craft and business concerns.