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Holy F*ck

Feb. 28th, 2015 09:33 pm
sakon76: (Sakon)
I have finished the edits from my classmates. All of them. For a novel and, um, a quarter of a novel. I have just one piece left.

Of course, that one piece is the edits from [livejournal.com profile] tainry, which pretty much means me going through the entire novel again.

But holy cow, I've gone through two whole foot-high-plus stacks and found space on my desk!

Also, it is raining. Life is good.
sakon76: (Sakon)
Ha. I have finally bulldozed through cleared off one of the two piles of novel edits sitting on my desk. There is a 8.5" square of space at my right elbow now! And the other pile is about five inches tall. Or a hundred pages of edits, take your choice. So the end is in sight!

I've also finally pulled out my seed packets and started starting seeds for this year's garden. Melons and squash and and aubergines and peppers and corn and popcorn, oh my! I still have the tomatoes, flowers, herbs, and root vegetables (which get seeded in place) to go through, but I'm halfway there.

And, all the bricks on the patio from half taking down the double fence have been neatly stacked in the dogrun. (The dogrun for the dog which we don't have. Meh, the house came with it, and until we feel like taking metal posts out of a concrete slab, it's staying where it is. Storage space it is!) Now to start whacking more bricks out of the remaining inner fence, and eventually planting fruit trees along it....
sakon76: (Sakon)
Body feels better than yesterday, head feels worse.

Stuffed all of yesterday's weeding efforts into the yard waste bin, then lopped off all the suckers from the 40-ish trees lining our backyard, as well as the branches dipping down into walking height, and the ones blocking light from the windows on the north of the house. The yard waste bin is now full, so unless I borrow the neighbor's bin (which I might do; they have like no yard so never use it), I'm not pruning the rosebushes today after all. :/ I've also swept half the house and started the week's laundry.

Time for a sit-down break, which will probably consist of sun tea, painkillers, and more going through my backlog of edits on Queen's Choice. I've been powering my way through twenty pages a day, and it feels good. Both in the getting it done and clearing space on my desk sense, but also in the continual tweaking of the story for a smoother read. My word count isn't dropping much (currently at 118,124 words), so I'm also trying to identify subplots and characters I can cut if needed. 120K words is kind of the absolute upper limit for this genre, with 100K a safer goal. I think I've got one set of threads I could cut, if I can finagle the words to still make sense, but I'll need to be careful if I do so, because it's entwined with characters I cannot cut.
sakon76: (Sakon)
I'm on a cleaning/purging kick at the moment. Have been for a couple days, actually, and I'm hoping it sticks around. I've pulled a pile of stuff I'll never actually use/don't love anymore off my fabric shelves and hope to yank more. Still doubting I can purge enough there to "earn" that $4K Tiara quilting machine, though. I tried quilting on my mother's singer 201 only to find that the FMQ foot that fits my (newly serviced) Babylock doesn't work at all for a vintage Singer. And the foot that does will cost $30+. Thus, I've shifted back to the Babylock for the current quilting project, and just one and a half squares in, am back to dreaming hard about that Tiara, its table, the lovely lovely 18 inches of harp space....

But today I ended up working on my desk instead of sewing. I know it has a surface down there somewhere.... I've gone through a bunch of magazine issues, ripped out the few pages I want to keep, and tossed the rest into recycling. Ditto for swathes of "why do I even have this?" bits of paper. So far the left side of my desk has gone into four stacks: "priority to be dealt with," "books to read," "miscellaneous to be dealt with later," and a box of photos and cards. The right side is still a foot and a half stack of novel edits. I've done twenty pages worth today. If I manage to average ten pages a day... it'll be clear in a month. God that's depressing. My own fault for letting them pile up for so long.

Right now, though, I'm hitting the wall. Time to put the Squiddle to bed, and then find sleep myself. 'Night, all.
sakon76: (Sakon)
It's been a hot weekend, so we've mostly been hiding inside until the heat of the day dies away. By opening doors and windows in the early morning, and evening, and then keeping them closed during the heat of day, we manage to keep the inside of the house about fifteen degrees cooler than the outside. The difference between 100 Fahrenheit and 85 Fahrenheit is significant!

That said, I feel like I've gotten a fair amount done this weekend. We had my parents up yesterday for brunch, the last chance we'll have before they sail off for six months in Mexico. I went through twenty pages of edits on Field of Stars. I made sun tea, swept two rooms, and realized my Italian plums weren't going to last another day, so put up four and a half half-pints of Peach-Plum Ginger Jam.

Today I've gotten less done, so feel like a bit of a slacker in comparison. I've done the laundry, swept two more rooms and the hallway, made chicken cacciatore for dinner, and edited ten pages. Wonderful Husband and I also did a bit of grocery shopping.

But mainly we've been staying cool.

ARGH

Apr. 25th, 2014 03:35 pm
sakon76: (Sakon)
I've got a project started of going through the foot or so of reviews from my writing classmates that're stacked on my desk, and condensing down the edits I want to make to my copy of each ten-page section. And a number of the edits are good and thoughtful.

But then there are the sticklers for grammar who keep going "no semi-colons in dialogue!" and I just want to bash their heads in. WHY THE FRACK NOT? Some I take out, but some, I would genuinely speak that way, so I'm leaving them. (I find it hilarious when they circle semicolons with that note about dialogue, without bothering to realize the bit they circled isn't dialogue.) Also bugging me in the category of "slavish adherence to the rules" are the people who swap phrases around so that every single fricking sentence ends on the strong word. (They do this in their own writing too.) And I just look at it and wonder if they've tried reading some of the sentences aloud, because the way they phrased it does not sound right in English.

Of course, there are the classmates who comment that my writing is "smooth like old whiskey," and I just stop and take a moment to savor that. Because my writing has improved, particularly in the last hundred pages of this book, to the point where I'm enjoying each section as I edit it to turn in to class.

Mind, I still have to go revise the first two-thirds of the book to the same par....
sakon76: (Default)
HA. Screw my dread and depression, I've edited ten pages of Queen's Choice to turn into class this week, along with a summary page for the handful of newbies, and the first fifteen pages for Pat to take down to the writer's conference in San Diego next month. Which involved hunting up proper MS format, and oh frag, what do you mean I'll eventually need to turn all italics in the nearly 120K-word document into underlines?

Fanfiction has so spoiled me for using the actual emphasis type I want.
sakon76: (Default)
I've read through the seventy pages I had, and edited it down to sixty-nine. I have decided that I hate the first scene, possibly the entire first chapter. I can tell that it's not good because I actually hit a point where my brain said, "Finally! The good stuff!" But I don't know how to fix it just yet. The funeral is important, and introducing the seamstress and her son doubly so. So I'll leave it and press on for now.

In unrelated news, one of my cats (Sushi) has gotten some kind of injury on his front right paw. The animal clinic I take him to was closed today, so I'm probably going to take him in first thing in the morning and then keep him with me in the carrier at work. Which he is just going to looooove.

ETA: Not sure exactly where I started, since I didn't check word count before editing, but I have for sure written 653 words today, ending at 14,617. One prompt card has been discarded, as that event is finished, and I'm now staring at a note on one of the others, wondering what I meant by "militia vs. mage stabilization"...
sakon76: (Default)
I'm doing the turn-in-every-week thing in the writing class, as there aren't too many others submitting this term. Kind of odd, but also quite nice to be getting feedback on ten pages each Wednesday.

This week my class hit the scene with the dragon council, which I knew was problematic, but I didn't know quite why, or how to fix it. Maralys wants me to cut it/them. I can't. This scene, and its associated handful of new characters, is going to be significant later. In book 2 or 3. I need to set it up now. But I did come away with the idea of working at least a couple of the characters in earlier. Which means writing new scenes but possibly truncating this one a little. This is probably going to push me back up over 120K, though. Grr! Fixfixfix.

I wrote up the grand list of stuff I would like to get done/have done by Thanksgiving, and handed it to Wonderful Husband. We'll see how much of it actually ends up happening.
sakon76: (Default)
Have finished second editing pass on Queen's Choice!

Now to put on shoes and a hat and go pull weeds.

Non-stop thrills, chills, and excitement around here, y'all. :)

DONE!!!!

Jul. 3rd, 2012 10:31 pm
sakon76: (Default)
Instead of baking pies tonight, I edited. Round one of Queen's Choice closes out at 603 pages and 119,881 words. I made my target!

Now, happy-dancing. Tomorrow, baking. This weekend, starting Field of Stars. And maybe somewhere in there, working on the next chapter of Deus Ex Machina.
sakon76: (Default)
So when we went to Lowe's over the weekend for Wonderful Husband to get a last few things for his class and for me to get four handles for the cabinet (which previously had two handles), we got asked by three sales associates if we needed help.

Tonight, going back to get screws that were actually long enough to put the handles on the cabinet doors, I could not find a one. And when I managed to find the magical "summon sales associate" button, it took forever for her to arrive and she knew nothing about screws.

There's something related to Murphy in that balance, I think....

Eventually I figured out what I needed; the cabinet now has handles. The shower room still looks a wreck, of course, but at least it now has its hardware in place.

Editing tonight leaves me at 563/605 and word count 120,191. Chapter 22 is done and things are starting to get tied up &/or set up for Field of Stars.
sakon76: (Default)
In this marathon editing process, I'm learning some things about the way I write. I use too many long, clauseful sentences. I hook things together too much. And I use "and" to start sentences way too often. I sometimes drop in chunks of description (for purposes of characterization) that really just detract from the flow. I tag dialogue sometimes when I don't need to.

In short, I frequently use too many words to do the job.

Ah well, that's what editing's for.
sakon76: (Default)
Up to page 536/605 and stopping because I don't feel like parsing out Higami's drunken ramblings into non-runon sentences that still give the feeling of drunkenness. Yes, he's been at the wine; the chapter is titled "In Vino, Veritas." And (in different ways and for different reasons) he's not the only one that it applies to. Word count is 120,422.
sakon76: (Default)
Stopping at page 510/606. Less than a hundred pages to go! Word count is currently 120,566. Less than six hundred words to go!

Have intimidated and bribed the abbess, gotten off the island, started to delve into a minor mystery via embroidered tapestries, set up plot threads for Field of Stars, and knocked some of Higami's arrogance out of him. Which will be a long process. Fortunately, Briselied is stubborn and actually does kind of like the idiot. If for no other reason than that he's the only of her siblings she can practice martial skills against.
sakon76: (Default)
Didn't edit last night, as I wanted to chat with people online, and I can't multitask creative stuff. Just doesn't work for me, never has, which is why I will never be an author who has playlists for their work.

(That said, I've been working my way through a few CDs during my commute, now that I actually, y'know, have a car with a working CD player again. Today on the drive home I popped in Mike and the Mechanics, and dammit if I wasn't crying in traffic during Silent Running. I have a story I want to write inspired by that song, and I can only hope it hurts other's heart-strings the way it hurts mine. Maybe after editing is done....)

Today's editing closes out at 485/606, and word count 120,826. I'm within a thousand words of my goal! Dealt with aftermath of the titular choice, and got my main four (and Briselied's plus-one) over onto the convent island to find out about the mother they missed out on.
sakon76: (Default)
Stopping at 457/607, word count 121,057. Have finished out chapter 18, dealt with emotional aftermath, slightly wavering sexuality, the succubus' feelings seeming genuine rather than genetic, and the titular choice. More emotional aftermath to come tomorrow.

Now, to bed, as I have a foot x-ray in the morning.
sakon76: (Default)
Stopping for tonight at 418/607. Word count 121,280. Have finished chapter 17, gotten to the point of making a few corrections to both the story and my notes file, and most importantly hit the BIG "Wait, what--WTF?!" rugpull/reveal. And it needed almost no editing, so I think I did the scene right.
sakon76: (Default)
Stopping on page 397/608, with a word count of 121,444. Fifteen pages done, with 731 words taken out today, including smoothing the description of Ariss' asexuality. Research done: maples grow all over the USA (sudden enlightenment as to what the trees were outside one of my childhood homes - I remember that seed shape!), but the ones that are commonly used to make syrup only grow back East. So, removing anyone knowing that Susse's mother is a sugar maple... but I can still call her a sugar succubus, given sugar's one of her primary foods. ^_^

Also, house is somewhat cleaner and we had my parents over for a belated Father's Day. (My dad was working on actual Father's Day.) The French Herbed Chicken turned out very nice, and he seemed pleased with the backpack we bought him to replace his old one, which is falling apart. For a change, got everything but "go to the gym" done on the to-do list. We were going to go this evening, but I ended up hurting enough in varying muscle groups that I edited instead. Amusingly, the editing tonight included Briselied with shoulder tension, and someone unexpectedly massaging it away for her.

*looks at Wonderful Husband* Hmm.... ^_-
sakon76: (Default)
Wonderful Husband figured out how to fix the fan, and it is now stuck back into/onto the ceiling, giving us light and a gentle breeze once more. We also went out and finally procured curtain rods for the office and two bedrooms. I know what we'll be doing tomorrow and next weekend....

And I edited. Chapter 16 done, which is as good a stopping place as any. Page 382/610, and word count 122,175. 411 words down, and 28 more pages done to boot. Except now I'm looking at that word count and wondering if I'm going to find 2,175 words to cut in the next 128 pages....

Regardless, I now have all my ducks in a row (or eggs in the same basket) and all the primary characters are assembled at King's Castle. And the sugar succubus (aka stalker girl) has finally made her debut.

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