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Jan. 23rd, 2012

butterfly

Happy Chinese New Year!

This is one of those random "hey, I have to tell somebody this cool THING" posts!  First, I dreamed last night of a great black dragon unfurling from the earth and taking flight to terrorize the city.  Today I found out from Facebook (of all places) that today marks the beginning of Chinese New Year: and this year is the Year of the Dragon!  Pretty cool, yes?  I wonder what it means.

When I did a little digging on the internet, I also found some interesting stuff related to Chinese astrology.  According to the date and time I was born, my year is the Black Cow (sooooo not as cool as the dragon, but whatever).  Even more interesting is this chart about my lucky times:

The Rise and Fall Chart of Your Life

http://www.chinesefortunecalendar.com/images/1blue.gif

http://www.chinesefortunecalendar.com/images/1red.gif

http://www.chinesefortunecalendar.com/images/1red.gif

http://www.chinesefortunecalendar.com/images/1red.gif

http://www.chinesefortunecalendar.com/images/1red.gif

http://www.chinesefortunecalendar.com/images/1red.gif

http://www.chinesefortunecalendar.com/images/1red.gif

http://www.chinesefortunecalendar.com/images/1red.gif

http://www.chinesefortunecalendar.com/images/1red.gif

http://www.chinesefortunecalendar.com/images/1red.gif

Age

0

7-16

17-26

27-36

37-46

47-56

57-66

67-76

77-86

87-96

"The Blue Bar stands for the beginning Luck Level when you were born. Each Red Bar stands for the Luck Level for 10 years. When you are in luck, the Red Bar is longer than the Blue Bar. Your good marriage should be in the longest Red Bar or a longer Red Bar period during the marriage age. Your career should begin in a longer Red Bar too. Usually, you can find two consecutive longer Red Bars together, which are your best 20 years."

I'm a little sad that the best years of my life were 7-26.  However, I have to say, this is pretty accurate.  The best years of my marriage were right there in the 17-26 bar (which is actually my tallest bar-- the graph didn't totally translate to livejournal).  And I also started my career during that time.  As for 27-36... yeah, that's about right, too.  I definitely had some ups during that decade, but if that's the lowest point of my life, I'm definitely not going to complain.  Happily, it looks like things are on the upswing!

I don't know how much I believe of this, but it is a little spooky how accurately this portrays my life thus far.

And to you, Year of the Dragon: bring it on!  I'm ready!

Jan. 7th, 2012

writing

Happy New Year!

Wow, 2012 already?  When did that happen?

With the new year comes resolutions.  Some will be made, some will be broken.  Who can say which is which?  For now, the year is a blank slate, all shiny with possibility!

My writing goals this year are pretty hefty:

- Finish editing Outcast, which is due to my publisher the end of this month for a July 2012 publication date.  This is the YA novel I finished back in 2008 after coming back from Viable Paradise, so it will be nice to finally send that baby out into the world.

- Finish Chrono Mechanics.  This book is alternately my joy and my albatross.  When I'm writing, it's a lot of fun to write.  It's almost finished.  And if life would CALM DOWN and just step aside for a few minutes I could get it done.  Right now it's got a publication date set for late 2012, so as soon as Outcast is out the door, it's time (haha-- joke!) for Chrono.

Begin drafting the sequel to Northern Queen, third in the Song series.  If I want to continue to live in this city where I keep selling people my books, I really need to get on this.  I think my fans are looking for their torches and pitchforks as we speak.  But worry not! The story ideas have started to flow after a long dry spell, and soon I will start outlining.

If that's not enough, I need to up my promotion strategies and become a more consistent and active livejournal participant.  That, and all my life resolutions for the year (get in shape, eat healthier, manage my finances, get a full-time teaching position, raise my children to be polite and productive members of society) should keep me busy.

So here's a toast: to 2012!  May the world not end just when I get my shit together.

Dec. 14th, 2011

Song & Sorceress, Hadley Rille Books

Priorities, Adjustments, and Other Mundanities

I'm always shocked by how infrequently I've been working on my writing these days, which is, in part, why I keep avoiding my livejournal.  That and massive quantities of overwhelm.

I've actually accomplished a lot in the past couple of months.  Some big changes in my personal life took place, which obviously puts a variety of plans and intentions on hold.  I added another class to my schedule, so I now teach five a semester instead of four.  Do-able, but still a big of a scheduling adjustment.  It's hard to get excited about generating writing when I'm always critiquing the writing of others.  

In terms of writing projects, I finished various phases of editing/ copyediting for three books:

- Beta Test, by one of my best writing peeps and VP XI buddy Eric Griffith, available now!
- Nightingale, the first novel I have ever completely edited, from acceptance to finish, by Melissa Mickelson, coming out in April.
- A Time Never Lived, by the fantastic and wonderful bogwitch64, also known as Terri-Lynne DeFino.  You will want to buy this in May 2012.

I also sold my YA novel, now titled Outcast, to Eric T. Reynolds of Hadley Rille Books, thus landing another hefty revision/ rewriting project on my plate.

Now that the grading for the semester has been mostly done, I've turned my full attention to revising Outcast.  I really dipped into it today, and it felt like coming home.  I've really missed this world, these people, this story!  I've already worked through 57 pages (six chapters) and I'm hoping to finish all of the revisions and rewrites by December 31st.

Meanwhile, Chrono Mechanics is briefly on hold.  The first draft is still hovering entirely too close to done, and I will put all of my time and attention to finishing that as soon as Outcast is ready to roll, probably right around January 1st.  While it's too early to start setting New Year's resolutions, I fully intend to have the first draft of Chrono completely done by January 31st, if not sooner.

So there you have it!  My writing projects in a nutshell.  It's going to be a busy holiday, what with rewrites and the sewing projects I'm working on, never mind the wrapping, the baking, etc., but it really feels good to give the creative bits of me some room to work again.



Nov. 4th, 2011

CM

(no subject)

Well, hello there, little writing blog!  Did you miss me?  I know I missed you.

I have decreed that, henceforth unto the end of the semester, Fridays shall now be reserved for writing projects.  My goal is to complete, every Friday, at least 500 words of new writing on Chrono Mechanics and one chapter of editing on my YA novel Rat's Tale/ Thief of Erados/ Outcast, which I am happy to announce will be published by Hadley Rille Books in July 2012.  This is not to say I won't write or work on these projects on other days, but on Fridays I vow to put aside all grading, social engagements and catwaxing in order to accomplish these two goals.

Today's progress:

1. Chapter One of Outcast (new working title) edited.
2. 693 new words achieved on Chrono.  Total words: 92,644.

Progress!  It feels good!

Sep. 25th, 2011

CM

(no subject)

392 words today.  Yay!  I would have hit my goal of 500, but I got distracted.  Maybe later.

For now, off to writing group! :)

Total word count: 91,951

Sep. 23rd, 2011

CM

(no subject)

1010 words today on Chrono.  Woohoo!  If I could do that for 10 more days, I'd probably have this draft done.

But I won't, so let's not go there.

Only 4 1/2 handwritten pages of outline left to write, and the outline is pretty detailed.  I've given up guesstimating when this book will be done, but I'm always hopeful it will be done soon.  At least I know where it's going now, which is pretty exciting.

Current word count: 91,559 words

Sep. 16th, 2011

CM

(no subject)

619 words on Chrono Mechanics today.  If you want to get really technical about writing quotas, I wrote just under that on a blog comment over at Heroines of Fantasy and another 300 on an article for the Inner Circle Corona newsletter.  I also wrote an email to Governor Jerry Brown.  Therefore, I'm going to pat myself on the back for a productive writing day and focus on grading papers for the rest of the afternoon.  And after THAT I'm going to have movie night with my kids.  I've earned it!

Chrono total: 90,549.

Sep. 15th, 2011

CM

(no subject)

No formal word count to add today, but I did finish plotting Chrono through to the end. Small victory! Now that I know how it's all going to play out I think it will be easier to finish- as long as I can carve out some time to write!

Sep. 12th, 2011

Northern Queen

New Blog Post up at Heroines of Fantasy!

I've been rather more quiet about this than I should have, but I am privileged to be one of the "Three With Eyes that See" over at the new Heroines of Fantasy blog, and my first post, "Why Heroines: Defining the Heroine in Epic Fantasy" is up now!  In it I mention the common stereotypes of women in fantasy and discuss what qualities would help define a more realistic fantasy heroine.

Are you still here?  Go read my post!  

Sep. 10th, 2011

CM

(no subject)

Hey, I made some words today for the first time in forever!  It definitely feels good to be writing again, although it's becoming very hard to fit it into my schedule now that school's started.

Today's output is approximately 790 words, although some of that was transcribed from a notebook then embellished, and some was leftover from a previous day's output that didn't get recorded here.  Nevertheless, it's here, it's accounted for, and I'm planning on getting back into the 500 words a day groove.

I know, I know.  I keep saying that.  But REALLY I'M GOING TO TRY VERY, VERY HARD.

Word count: 89,930

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