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2/16/24 Friday Update

This week I got back on the normal schedule. That involved a couple of days off after the conference in Colorado, followed by slowly ramping back up into new words on Fated to the Wolf. I’ve been practicing dictating the story while I go for walks in the neighborhood, both to get more steps in each day, but also to see if I can increase my wordcount without putting more labor on my fingers. I don’t have carpel tunnel yet and I’d love to keep it that way.

Work this week also included reviewing and typing up notes from the talks I attended at Superstars. There are several talks I took handwritten notes for, others I have photographs of the slides that I need to incorporate, still others I have typed notes but I need to download the handouts the speakers provided. It’s a lot of paperwork, but it’ll be nicely organized for future reference whenever I need it.

Finally, I’m going to incorporate my goals tracking here on the Friday update rather than a separate Monday post. Monday is an odd day for me to review the previous week and I don’t think the goals need a whole other post to themselves. So!

1k words/day – Took a break on Monday/Tuesday, started ramping up words this week. Didn’t get up to 1k until Friday. All as expected.

10k steps/day – I didn’t reach my step goals during the conference, which I expected, nor the day I drove home, but things ramped back up quickly once I was home again with over 10k on Wednesday. Very pleased with this!

1 completed art/week – Believe it or not, I actually drew something during the conference week, which I didn’t expect. Since this update is before my weekend I don’t have a piece to share this week, but that’ll correct next week.

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A Brand New Day – A Scifi/Horror Short Story

Cover Art, A Brand New Day

This short story isr releasing indie on March 5th, but is available here for Members to read early.

Monica doesn’t remember yesterday or last week or even last year. She wakes up every morning in the company of 19 other women all without memories. And every day, Monica grows more certain that there are secrets being kept from everyone.

This content is for members only.

A Brand New Day is available for purchase or preorder as Ebook or AI audio. Members, don’t forget your 10% off coupon for (DIRECT sales only) listed on the Perks page.

Ebook: Direct
Ebook: All Other Stores (preorder, releases March 5th)

AI Audio: Direct (coming soon)
AI Audio: All Other Stores (preorder, releases March 5th)

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Maj And The Outlaws #2 The Trinordia Dragon

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Cover Art, The Trinordia Dragon

This short story was originally written for the scifi magazine Boundary Shock Quarterly, Issue #21

This content is for members only.
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The Trinordia Dragon is available for purchase as Ebook or AI audio. Members, don’t forget your 10% off coupon for (DIRECT sales only) listed on the Perks page.

Ebook: Direct
Ebook: All Other Stores

AI Audio: Direct
AI Audio: All Other Stores

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Goals Tracking: Week 5

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Goals tracking! There are three major goals I’m tracking this year for both personal and business improvement. Comment below with your goals and how you did this week.

1k words/workday:

Monday: 2.5k – Re-plotted Fated
Tuesday: 1300
Wednesday: 0 – Appointment Day
Thursday: 1056
Friday:

Notes: This week had some upheaval on Wednesday. I had a 3 hour hair appointment to lighten, dye, and get a cut. One of the most impactful side effects of my autism is a limited tolerance for public settings and a very long recovery period following an outing like this. The bigger, longer, or later the event, the more time I require to recover from it. Therefore, a 3 hour hair appointment (arguably doing nothing but sitting in a chair) turns into an entire afternoon and evening of rest, a full night’s sleep, and a nap the following day. (still got the 1k on Thursday, though!) I do my best to recognize when an outing is going to drain me and deliberately make plans after to read a good book and wear my noise-canceling headphones to reduce input. All of that allowed me to bounce back on Thursday quite well. Needing only a nap is a great result.

I went to a Nascar race once. 2 hr drive there, 5 hrs of race cars (with headphones and ear plugs), 2 hr drive home. I spent the next three days asleep except to eat a single meal. Honoring the rest I require has been a very hard lesson to learn.

Next week will be a 0 words week while I travel to Colorado and attend a conference!

10k steps/day

Monday: 9935 – So close!
Tuesday: 8793
Wednesday: 10,070 – 2nd 10k of the year!
Thursday: 9610
Friday:
Saturday:
Sunday:

Notes: The step goal is in the mid 8k’s now, which means I’m brushing up against 10k on days with an errand to run or an extra walk around the park. I’ve found that I can use the stepper while I knit or crochet and watch a video, which is great when I realize I’m 2k short around dinner time.

I’m curious to see how my effort changes once the weather is nice enough to go running again. This week I’m in Colorado with plans to go hiking and with a lot of walking expected at my conference. I don’t think these step goals will be hard to hit!

1 completed line art/week

Notes: I had one idea, then another idea, then a slightly different idea–things were all over the place this week.

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Friday Update 2/2/24

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Friday Update 2/2/24

In an unusual move, this week I decided the big plan I had for Fated to the Wolf needed to be cut down to something more compact. It’s a story meant to go in an anthology with a collection of other shifter authors and the target length is 20k. While they would accept a 70k novel, that isn’t the goal of the project. At the same time, much of my fiction study in the last month or so has focused on the Villain Gets The Girl trope, as well as the general beats for dark romance, and I realized the main characters in Fated could be pushed into some stronger positions.

So on Monday, I re-plotted Fated to really punch up the Villain trope, the cinnamon roll trope, and the kill for you/touch him and die tropes. I also cut the plot down from 70k to less than half, now at 30k. The intent here is to leave some of the world building for future books in the series while also hitting the novella length instead of the novel.

On Tuesday I started re-drafting Fated from scratch to accommodate the character changes which leaves me in the very rare situation of having over 20k words of novel that probably won’t see the book in its final form. Little pieces of description will be pulled, like outfits or locations, but even those need tweaking for the new character voices.

Fated to the Wolf will be serialized here on the blog for members to read early and I think I will include some of the deleted scenes or chapters so people can see how dramatic the shift has been.

My main human character, Amari, is now a much stronger voice and character, and my shifter MC with a heart of gold has a clearer role in wooing him. Both of those changes made the new outline for the story pour out of me in one massive writing session, which is always a good sign.

Look forward to Fated to the Wolf later this year!