Categories
Novel Publications Short Story writing

My WIPs: An Update, An Admittance

I know I posted earlier this week about my “WIP” singular buuuuut, I haven’t been entirely honest. I actually have several projects which I’m working on and here’s a summary of where I’m at for each of them.

Mag Kad
(working title)

I’ve completed the dirty draft for this one which means that it’s sitting at 22,000 words and I expect to triple that. However, I realized that the story was 1. extremely trope ridden and 2. the characters were weak. So, I’ve set that one down for now and plan to come back to it sometime in July.

I don’t have a blurb for this one yet, but it’s an arcanepunk, solarpunk secondary world dystopian novel where magic users are caused by radiation and are viewed as abominations. I’m excited to flesh out this work and the characters. Right now it needs a lot of work, though.

Titaness of Bone (working title)

I’ve completed the dirty draft and dug into draft one on this one. The characters were stronger, I felt more invested in the story, and I knew where/what to change by the time I finished my dirty draft. I’ve revised draft 1 through the first story arc which means I’m sitting at 55,772 words currently and I hope to expand it out to around 90,000 (the higher end for fantasy drafts). I never imagined reaching anything of that length, but as I’m revising… things keep getting stretched out and fleshed out. So, I may end up eventually doing some trimming. Gasp.

I’ve previously posted about this one so go check out my first WIP post for the blurb and more details.

Sellsword
(working title)

This one’s a fantasy romance and I actually haven’t finished my dirty draft yet. I realized I didn’t know where I wanted to go with the story. Unfortunately, since I didn’t finish the dirty draft this one may drop off. But also, I certainly am hopeful that when I come back to it in August that I’ll better see the flaws and I’ll know where I want to take that story as well.

Right now it’s sitting right at 22,000 words-ish. And this isn’t the official blurb but this is what I wrote before delving into the novel. Rinise never wanted the throne. In fact, she and her brother actively fled from their cultish family so they wouldn’t try to sneak them back into the courts. Unfortunately, some fanatics got wind of surviving royals. And well, that would ruin everything. So, to keep the current king they’ve sent out an assassin. They killed her brother, but she’s still alive for now. And she’s in Lazaro looking for a sellsword. There’s all kinds of shifty sorts here. The barkeep said the one in the corner is honorable, however, so she’s walking towards him. And his flat eyes meet hers.

Queen of R
(working title)

It’s laughable, but this one’s sitting at 4,000 words. I started this gender-bent beauty and beast retelling a day or two ago. The protag, Gentry, wants to save his shop and so he’s heading to the soothsayer to see if she can tell him a way to earn the money to do that.

I’ll let you guys know when I finish the dirty draft for this one.

friends of clara

My Collab Works

I actually have two collaborative works going right now which I’m co-writing with two different individuals. Since I’m not the only one working on these projects, I can’t say exactly how far along in these two projects we are, or if they’ll ever reach completion in the way we envisioned. The first one, which has undergone multiple iterations, is currently on the back burner for myself and my co-writer. We’ll have to see if we come back together to salvage that one. The other work, which just underwent a major plot overhaul, is slow going as me and my co-writer are both currently very busy. But it’s moving along slowly.

My short stories

I’m going to say, I’m not very good at writing short stories at the moment. But that hasn’t stopped me from trying. The work is still a bit rough so I’ve set all four of them to rest for the moment. However, I’ve got my eye on them. I’m hoping that after a month or two I can make the required changes and send them out one more time for applications.

So, as you can see I’m a little crazy. Between these and increasing my online presence, I’m ready to pull out my hair, but I will continue to send updates every couple of weeks and I will be published, sooner or later. Thanks again for your support, I wish you all success and glory. What do you have in the works right now? Share in the comments below.

Categories
Reviews

3 Stunning YA Fantasy Covers

Covers are what draw me to books, for better or for worse. Despite the saying, people really do judge a book by its cover. So why are so many covers bleh? Well, in this article we’re going to look at 3 YA covers that most certainly aren’t bleh.

1. Apolar’s Harry Potter Covers

COVER ART BY APOLAR

This book cover from the Thai artist, Apolar, is nothing short of stunning. And all the covers they’ve done for the Harry Potter series are equally as stunning. The face shapes, the story elements, and the use of cover space are all excellently done. If a teen picks up this book they know exactly what type of story they’re in for. And, because this cover is so well designed, if someone picks it up and doesn’t buy it, it’s because either 1. they’ve already heard about the books and didn’t think it was for them or 2. they genuinely aren’t interested in the genre that is presented to them.

With cover there’s no doubt about the content and that’s what a good cover does. A book cover accurately represents the genre it contains.

2. Simon Prades’ Tess of the Road Cover

COVER ART BY SIMON PRADES

After poking around his website, it seems that Simon Prades has an excellent understanding of positive and negative space. This German illustrator certainly implemented his talents on Tess of the Road‘s cover as well. The concepts of the book are gently explored without over-cluttering the space given him. This is more of a personal preference but I prefer when a book cover is concise.

3. Jeff Langevin’s Anya and the Dragon Cover

COVER ART BY JEFF LANGEVIN

Again, an excellent use of positive and negative space from artist Jeff Langevin for the book Anya and the Dragon. The setting, and glimpses of the plot are visible through the frame of the main character. Similar to the last one, this cover presents information without overwhelming the viewer and there’s no mistaking the genre the reader’s getting. This cover feels clean and makes great use of color.

What’s your favorite book cover and why?

Categories
writing

A Bad Scene, Better Than None

Oh, you’re past the inciting incident and you haven’t reached the end just yet. You have a few thousand words to go through before you get there. And by a few I mean about 30,000? I’m low balling, by a lot. Anyhow, when you get to the flabby middle section of your book the most important thing is to keep moving.

writer's block

Fresh out of Ideas. What to Write?

Out of Ideas? 😦 What should you do if you’re in the middle and you find yourself out of ideas? This is where leading a meeting or running a RPG comes in handy because nothing says pull something out of the air right now like having a table full of expectant faces. Yikes. Literal nightmares. But, after a long while, after a very very long while, you get used to it. And you find that, yes, you can pull things out of the air. You’ve studied them so much that they spill out.

But wait, maybe you’re not to that point yet! So, what do you do? Well, I look up plot hook ideas because, surprise, the plot doesn’t happen at the beginning and the end of the story alone. A whole lot of it happens in the middle too. These guys can give your characters enough juicy action to keep kicking through the slump of your book.

So, here’s a pair of useful places to look:

  1. D&D Quest Ideas
  2. Subplot Ideas

I also recommend Save the Cat, Writes a Novel. It has some excellent plotting advice which should help you string your story quite nicely.

writer's block

Why a Bad Scene Is Better Than None

A bad scene can be rewritten. Half of the battle is getting through the middle of the book. If you can make it to the end you can re-hash, re-smash, and honestly re-write a lot of things. A bad scene is good because you know it’s bad. A bad scene can be tossed or re-written. So, write a scene you hate. Write a scene that sucks. If you write it, you’ll reach the end, and you’ll know how to change it when you go back.

In fact, Brandon Sanderson openly admitted in his lectures that he makes revision notes as he writes his first draft. This is perfect. If you really don’t like a scene, you can make a note about how you’ll do it better next time around. And thus, you’ll reach the end of your book.

writer's block

Keep Writing

Never give up. Even if you can’t make it this time, keep trying. Don’t give up and try to keep writing even through the terrible bits. You’ve got this. Feel free to comment below. Do you disagree?