I had to find my productivity in other areas today. I just couldn't bring myself to be even remotely creative. I nearly bagged the whole thing, but that doesn't bode well either.
I started out with social media. There are always a few emails, tweets, and blogs to get through. This allowed me time to get the first cup of coffee down.
It was a good time to work through my critiques. The guys don't have me fixing much this time, but I'm disappointed that a cluster of “was” writing crept in again. I may never get over this flaw, and I think it sneaks in when I write fast. Thank God for critique partners who know my shortcomings.
By this time, I knew there would be no new words today. I still want to keep working, so I decided to assemble my short stories into a book. It came out a bit over 40,000 words. I still have to add the back material once I decide what that is, but it isn't fair to count those words.
The first Experimental Notebook offers 12 stories for 99¢. This one will offer 15, heck of a bargain if you ask me.
I chose a micro-fiction piece called Fever to start the book with. Amazon decides how much to offer as a preview, and I have no control over that. I want to let pre-viewers read an entire story, so by placing a micro in front I have some control.
This one offers a nod to pulp science fiction. This wasn't on purpose, but three stories came out that way, and I like that. The old pulps were a lot of fun. I also have two stories with no speculative element what-so-ever. (Shocking for me.) I struggled with what to do with them, but by having more stories than the first book, I've convinced myself they are freebies.
One of the stories without a speculative element turned out so good I decided to end the book with it. Like all decisions, it's debatable, but I really like it. It's called Practical Geology. (I never said it wasn't weird, it just doesn't include advanced technology or magic.)
I also wrote my intermission. The first Notebook included one, and I got some good remarks about it. If I'm calling this one a Notebook there ought to be some consistency. I'll probably change the intermission ten times before it gets to market, but it exists now and that's important.
For ending material, I'll probably pull an excerpt from The Playground. Clovis is kind of charming, (he said with tongue in cheek) there is probably a colorful section with him I can use.
I put together a fun draft for the next Lisa Burton Radio post, and it's turning out great. I also exchanged email with a couple of authors for future character interviews.
So all in all, it was a productive day. It wasn't even remotely creative, but I accomplished a lot. The task driven part of being a writer doesn't get talked about often, but it matters.
Tonight, we're going to try date night somehow. We'll have to be quick, because my wife has to work tomorrow at 3:00 AM.
Tomorrow, I need to start reading through these short stories. I'm sure there are spelling and punctuation errors in there. I may even have a “was” cluster to find and kill. It looks like I need to spend some time with the Raven of Doubt to get this thing ready.
I hope to publish this in September after the school year starts back up. That worked well last year. This means I need to think about cover art, promotional stuff and all that jazz. That will be a project for a different weekend.