Monday, November 29, 2010

A Minor Outburst

To anyone who follows me on Facebook or Twitter, I must apologize for the angry message I posted early this morning. It has been a long while since a flare up hurt me in such a way, and I should keep such things private. I do not wish to be viewed as someone who pisses and moans too often, especially over something I cannot change.

My frustrations with Ankylosing Spondylitis will continue. It is a lifelong affair for which I am just starting.   I need to remain grateful for the treatments that I currently receive, and remember that this pain used to be a nightly occurrence. I'm not sure how I used to sleep at all with it like that.

Thank you all for following me. And sorry to my roommates, who may or may not have been kept awake by random war shouts and cursing last night. In the words of Mrs. Bergeron, last night "was a doozy."

Thursday, November 25, 2010

America's fate put in capable hands

(Note: This was published in our local newspaper, The Coloradoan. I try to keep politics off of here, but since it made the paper, I might as well throw it up here for posterity's sake.)

In the most basic of terms, young people have had their future sold out. We watch as those in power continue to create wild and unimaginable levels of debt. We observe as the intolerances of past generations hold back the expansion of science and human achievement. The proliferation of entitlement, political correctness, and responsibility deflection has bestowed my generation with pragmatic problems that have only hard-fought and complex solutions.

Yet, we will find a way. I find myself surrounded by the strength of intelligent men and women, who have grown intolerant of the status quo. Great people who will rise when it is asked of them and who will take on the challenges this nation faces.

The time for short-handed and timid solutions is over, and though we will have to carry a burden placed on us by half a century of irresponsible policy and actions, we will overcome. We will succeed in our civic duty, both out of desire and necessity.

The luxuries afforded to the Baby Boomers will not be given to us. Our inheritance was spent along with our future. This generation will carve its own path, despite those whose sensibilities would have us falter.

We cannot fail and still have the America of our founders, the America that was made by the sweat of great men and the blood of generations of fallen heroes. Fear not for the fate of this country, it is being delivered into our capable hands.

Monday, November 22, 2010

A Quiet Month

November has been a month of partial frustration and pseudo progress. I'm not really sure how else to describe it. This post might be a little bit spastic since i am covering several topics.

NaNoWriMo has forced me to write daily, but my chances of finishing at this point are pretty damn slim. If I don't finish, but breach 30,000 words, than I have hit my old monthly goal, and that would be a major victory. However, falling behind on my current WIP has given me a pretty terrible gut check. I feel guilty and ashamed about it, though I really should be grateful that I am writing and still like my story.

I might have to deal with being a 1,000 words a day kind of guy. Sure, I have my moments where I can pump out 4,000 words, but those are few and far between. I may not be as prolific as many authors out there, but if I can manage to be consistant, I think good things will come of it.

Editing is once again a primary concern. I need to find a writers group. I haven't received the feedback I need to grow as a writer, and at this point, I'm not sure where to find it.

Any suggestions on finding a group of willing editors would be appreciated. My google-fu isn't quite what it used to be.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

The Wheels Fell Off

If anyone has been paying attention to my NaNoWriMo stats, they would notice a major drop off that started about four days ago. Unfortunately, I fell into a plot trap, and got frustrated. Instead of trying to pull myself out, and just writing through it, I let it stagnate. Now I am on a five day plan to catch up, and the pressure is on.

This contest is most definitely not over. I am about 10,000 words behind, and will be working to get that back. I was behind by about the same amount last year, and was able to overcome the deficit. I technically work for the government, so I should know all about deficits.

As I was writing this, a few ideas have cropped up that will allow me to continue. Maybe just throwing my frustration down in a text format was all I needed to do all along.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Intimidating Tasks

Augmented Genesis is slowly chugging along, but other tasks are robbing me of my focus. I'm not talking about work or my home life, but the current state of this blog's namesake, Human Echoes.

I can honestly say that Human Echoes is a complete mess. A sprawling distraction that should probably be put out of its misery. I can't seem to do that, being that it was my first, and thus far, largest project. The idea of complete destructive revision has surfaced again, and I might not be able to stop it.

The plan as it stands right now, is to tear Human Echoes in half. To create a stand alone book of around 60,000 words using an altered plot from the first half of the book, and then to create the sequel. Being that I am the only one who has read the book so far, I doubt this really matters to anyone, but it might be the only way to save this novel. I even have a concept for a third book if it gets to that point. At this point, it seems like the stories would be much cleaner if they were separated.

I am encouraged by my will to produce, but still intimidated by the tasks ahead. Being a writer is a long and lonely path sometimes, and of course, the chances of success are low. I hope that my resolve will lead to better ends, both in my novels, and in the rest of my toils.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Talking Too Much

As my current WIP trots along, I have noticed something off about the characters; they talk way too damn much. I have written some pretty heavy dialogue work in the past, even a few short stories that were entirely in dialogue, but this might be getting out of hand.

I feel as though I am walking a fine line between characterization and info dump. They seem to speak naturally, which is a plus, but when is it too much? I have always hated in books when a conversation happens just to give awkward back story. It often seems lazy and unnecessary. I can't quite tell yet if I have gone too far, but it might be something that needs addressing soon. I am going to try for a 10,000 word weekend while the story still feels hot. I will be able to tell much more on the other side.

Anyway, a quick status update on Augmented Genesis:

7,075 words and rising
Characters killed: 0
Suns exploding: 0
Mountain Dew Consumption: Moderate
Currently Playing: Jedi Mind Tricks - Uncommon Valor

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

NaNoWriMo Thoughts

I have noticed that most of the serious writers I follow have a problem with NaNoWriMo. It is strange to see that they are seriously condemning participation. I'm pretty sure its the stigma of a lot of wanna-be writers slapping together a 50,000+ word manuscript and sending it out to agents. I'm not sure what is so threatening about that, considering they will all get form rejections anyway.

For me, it is about forcing myself to settle down and write a first draft. 1667 words a day is not a lofty number. Many authors, such as Stephen King, try to write around 2,000 words per day. If you can push that a little bit, and end up with a decent first draft of around 70,000 in a month, then what could possibly be wrong with the program?

My experience with writing Human Echoes has taught me more about writing than any class or seminar. I'm still learning from it as I edit and revise it. It was my first novel, and what made me love writing again. If it wasn't for NaNoWriMo, I probably wouldn't have this blog, and I probably would have never developed some of the better writing habits that I have. I for sure wouldn't have a 400 page manuscript sitting on my desk.

Anyway, time to get back to Augmented Genesis. I am nearly on pace for the day, and am hoping to bank some words for the inevitable bad day. I did 2,300 words in a few short hours yesterday, and it was the best single session I have had in a few months. Good luck people, and if you are participating, let me know so I can follow you and your progress.
 
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