My side project

This year, I started dabbling with the idea of two projects at a time. I always thought I couldn’t do it, but it’s made me more productive in the long run.

My only explanation is that when I get stumped in my main project, I can pick up the other one and move ahead. Usually by doing this, it unwinds the issue I had in the main project.

With Viral Blues and Serang out the door, I can concentrate on new fiction once more. The main goal is HMS Lanternfish, but it’s been “at anchor” since September. My side project is close to completion, so I’m focusing more on it right now.

Old What’s Her Face was off all weekend, and that prevents new fiction from happening. It’s one thing to write a blog post, or exchange a few emails with various hosts, but new fiction requires concentration.

We decided to rearrange the garage yesterday, and that was a more productive use of time. We threw some things out, swept up, moved the shelving around, then brought in the patio furniture for the winter. It was a good day, and the weather was perfect.

She took over the television, so we had Hallmark Christmas while I gnashed my teeth and prayed for a national emergency or something to interrupt. After that it was some red carpet event followed by an awards show. I’d moved on to bourbon by then, so it didn’t matter.

Today is a different matter. She has to work today, and my time is my own. The side project is called Grinders. This one is a niche bit of science fiction called cyber -punk.

Grinders are a group of people who implant technology into their own bodies, or those of friends, in the hopes of becoming more than human. This goes on today, so I ran with it.

Cyber-punk usually doesn’t have deep plots. It’s more about exploring this futuristic world, and all the fantastic new things it holds. I kept my plot pretty basic, but there is one – just in case.

It is science fiction, so I made sure to poke a stick at some of our modern issues and push them to extremes in the future. It’s small stuff, but kind of what science fiction is good at. You’ll see advertising pushed to the extreme, helicopter moms, safe spaces, plastic contamination, and global warming, but not in a preachy way.

I added about 2000 new words to it today, and moved from end-game to denouement. There are a couple of threads to sew up, so this section is longer than I usually do. It all works, so I’m not worried about it.

I’ve decided to write my first epilog, too. I know those are out of vogue, but there are a couple of animals who get abandoned about 3/4 of the way in, and I want to wrap their story. They no longer influence the plot, but a couple of paragraphs aren’t really a deal killer. Might even finish it next weekend.

Yesterday, I shared the Pinterest Board for Serang. A few people seemed to enjoy it, so I’m going to share the one for Grinders. You’ll see some cityscapes, character studies, and even a maze of pipe for a rat. Here’s the Pinterest Board.

One of the cool things about Pinterest is the boards stick around. If you want to write something about China, or your own cyber-punk story, you can snipe from these to start your own board. Just cruising them might give you a brand new idea.

Sean Harrington is sharing Lisa’s catfish poster on his DeviantArt site. Sean and I have a long history, and he might appreciate a bit of traffic. Here is the link if you’d like to visit him.

I’m still watching for reviews. Serang is too new to have anything, but Viral Blues is ripe for some fresh reviews. If you enjoyed this story, it’s a huge help to say something on Amazon. It doesn’t take much, just a line or two and it counts as much as those who write paragraphs of commentary.

When I finish Grinders, I’m going to take Lanternfish back up. I probably won’t start a side project for a while, but once I add about 30K words to that story, It’s likely I will start another one… on the side.


Filed under Uncategorized, Writing

29 responses to “My side project

  1. my side projects tend to end up being the main one 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Always a good feeling finishing a project, be it a book or cleaning out the garage.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Glad you got some ‘me’ time.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Kind of neat that you’re going from pirates to grinders:) No way you’d confuse the two different plots. When I work on two different books, they have to be different enough that I don’t have to worry about which is which. Sounds like you’ve found what works for you.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Sounds like great progress, Craig. I’m looking forward to grinders, really enjoyed Viral Blues, and have Serang on my ereader waiting for me to get to it. Like you, I find side projects helpful. For instance, I’m writing a trilogy at the moment, and book 2 is huge, and I felt a bit bogged down, so I also wrote a Christmas novella alonside, which gave my muse some light relief. Now that’s ready for release, it’s nose back to the trilogy grindstone, lol. After the brief change, I’m finding that I’m really enjoying the writing again. Best of luck with all your projects, Craig 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  6. As an animal lover, thank you for wrapping up their story. I’m currently reading a book for book club and already two dogs have been killed, a cat apparently just abandoned, and the family can’t keep the dog of their recently deceased father, and I’m wondering what kind of hatred this author has for pets. It felt good to vent – thanks, Craig.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. “I decided to have a plot, just in case.” LOL

    Liked by 1 person

  8. What a cool side project, Craig. Grinders is an intriguing title and I visited your Pinterest board. Wow! Lots of stuff to spark the imagination! I can most certainly see where you needed an epilog to give closer to the animals. I think you are right; that readers would want that.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Glad you visited the board. Other than personal use, I don’t do much with Pinterest. There’s probably a way to spark interest by using it differently, but I haven’t given it a ton of thought. The epilogue will be a brief scene, but readers will appreciate it once the story comes out.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Hmm … the cyber-punk sounds interesting. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Thank heavens for bourbon! 😛

    Liked by 1 person

  11. I usually have a couple of projects going at once like that too. Anyway, glad your weekend was so productive. Also, the side project sounds interesting.

    Liked by 1 person

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