Progress From the Lockdowned Cave: June 2020

Probably about time for a catch up.

Feels like the last six months have flown by.  It’s most likely the lockdown to blame, with days sliding by while life remains mostly on hold, but sometimes it just feels like time moves faster the more of it you’ve seen… amirite??

Speaking of lockdown, you’d have thought it would be the perfect opportunity to get more writing done, but it hasn’t quite worked out that way for me.  If anything, I’ve probably written far less than I would have if the world hadn’t lost its shit and a global pandemic had us locked behind closed doors.

Working a full-time job from home while caring for a toddler doesn’t leave much time for anything else.  Not when you want to catch up with the cinematic universes of both Marvel and Star Wars thanks to Disney’s new streaming service.  And certainly not when you need to know what happened to Carole Baskin’s husband…

That said, the writing hasn’t stood completely still.  I’ve finalised the manuscript for Blood in the Snow, now re-branded Wolfeater, and submitted it to numerous agents over the past few months.  I’m still waiting for a few more responses before I decide the next step for that one.  It’s a good story, one I’m proud of, and if I can’t find a home for it, I’ll definitely be looking to self-publish again, this time going full pro with a commissioned cover and a professional editor.  (I might even have to revisit The Ember Child to bring its game up to speed!)

Next up though, I’ve decided I’m going to tackle two projects simultaneously.  It’s a ballsy move, all things considered, but I’m hoping it’ll boost my productivity.  Given that there will be a lot of scenes to choose from at any one time, I’m hoping there’ll be enough variety for me to avoid those moments when the well runs dry.  I also just really want to get these stories told!

The first will be the long-awaited sequel to The Ember Child, currently operating under the working title, The One-Eyed King (those who have read the first book will get the reference).  The second project, let’s call it, The Thirteen Petals is another standalone story set in Domanska, the same fantasy world as all my other novels thus far.  Splashed with a heavy dose of samurai flavouring, think Akira Kurosawa meets Quentin Tarantino.

I’ve just finished the outline for Petals and I can’t wait to get started on the writing proper, but I think I’m going to wait until I’ve also outlined The One-Eyed King.  While I’ve always done some level of planning for my stories, it feels like the process has grown into a more cohesive, purposeful task as I’ve gained more experience.  I think planning all the scenes I want to write and how they tie together through the story helps me to understand what kind of novel I’m trying to write.  Most of the flesh on the bones still reveals itself as I write, which is actually quite the opposite of what you might expect from flesh and bones!

Finally, I’m seriously thinking of vlogging my next writing journey.  Having got myself a webcam to aid working from home, it seems a shame not to put it to good use.  I thought it might be a good idea to document my writing process, should that kind of thing interest anyone out there in the real world.  I’ve watched a few writing vlogs on YouTube and haven’t found one that’s doing it the way I’m thinking of.  That could be because I haven’t found them yet, or because it’s not really interesting/entertaining enough, but it’s an idea I haven’t quite been able to shake as yet.

Videos on writing aren’t really a thing I’ve ever seen myself doing, so I’d be interested to see what people thought of the idea. What are your experiences of author vlogs?  What would you like to see? What are you bored of?  Let me know if you’ve got any golden ideas and I’ll throw you a shout out when I reach 100k followers 😉

Anyways, back to the planning.

Tony
2nd June 2020

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