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it was too dark and too large to find your soul in.

the clock struck midnight, which means scrivener’s word count reset – at last count I was over 600, and I must have written two or three hundred more, so  I feel Good, as the kids say, about the word count.

here’s where we are at, via the mighty screen cap:

 

Screen Shot 2014-11-08 at 12.18.54 AM

My wee homage to Master McCarthy, and a bathtub.

Tonight’s new bits and edit bits included bloodletting, a fake! trip to the bathroom, grilled cheese sandwiches and and inability to spell sandwich.

I will take almost 61K, however. The diner scene, where Haven actually meets the Blood King, will shortly be rewritten for the 4th time, because that’s how we get our kicks.

Also, am super jelly that I am not at WFC. Sad Face. Not the least of which is that the Voynich MSS is taking a wee tour, a thing it hasn’t done IN MY LIFETIME.

/sad panda

 

 

in a bluestarry sky.

I’d worked at the Snack for three years, three years of late nights and chocolate milk; I knew the night-time faces. They didn’t need names; everyone had their standing order, preferences. They liked their night-milk warm, or almost scalding, two cookies or three. Short mugs, tall glasses. One straw. No straws.

Just a spoon, please.

The girl smiled at me, black eyes, dark hair. Lips the pale of winter.

That meant she wasn’t Crimson.

When had someone being Crimson become a thing I cared about?

Above the girl’s head, constellations twinkled, a trick of streetlight slipping in through plate glass windows, the waver of the hazy neon OPEN sign brightening their shapes in a bluestarry sky. Wes had painted the ceiling himself; if you looked close you could see tiny drops of paint in the tile floor, the broken edges of stars, not so unique once they’d fallen.

and that is a bit of something,  anyway. From this wee WIP.

because I did a thing, this thing!

Lookie what came in the mail today!

And because I added a 1K scene (yeahp, a funeral, super sadness!), and my mss. is now over 57K, and I am a good and law abiding person, I get to go do this!

CRONENBERG
CRONENBERG

a thing about which I am super excited! You can see the blurb is by Stephen King. I don’t even understand a world in which Cronenberg needs a blurb, but then my Viggo appears on the back-flap advance praise list, so yanno.

NOTHING IS TRUE.

EVERYTHING IS PERMITTED.

 

death at a –

I realized, earlier today, that I needed a funeral. That the character I thought might be missing/dead, but everyone thought was dead, was really, truly, at least in this part of the mss. because the world is a mysterious and unpredictable place, dead. So it’s sad. But the funeral is in a house, up a hill, where things are spooky. Because, Crimson*:

 

Scene, The Place Where We Belong
Scene, The Place Where We Belong

But, for now, he’s dead, and it’s super sad and it bums me out.

But, if you can read that small (you can clicky to embiggen), The Place Where We Belong is now just over 56K, which is good, since I’m still aiming for my first draft (this is zero draft) to be 60K. I have 67 days to do this thing. When I have done this thing, I will consider myself having written A Book. Another book, if you count the other books I have written.

In other news, I officially can now announce that And the Woods Are Silent, my raven/wolf story, was accepted for publication in This Patchwork Flesh, a quiltbag anthology from a Canadian editor (Michael Matheson). I got the prompt from Elizabeth Bear, way back in January, which just goes to show you that writing is not exactly the speediest business (the anthology, for various reasons, will be out Spring 2016). My writing Twin, and the person that understands how my creative brain works the best, Karin (whose writing I love so very much), read so many versions of this story she should be given a medal of honour. I learned a bunch about writing through this story, and I’m learning a bunch more through TPWWB.  The short isn’t YA, but the characters are young, maybe early, early twenties.  My characters always tend to be younger than I am, I suspect because I’m writing these stories for the me I was, the person that would have really liked to have read these things. Which sounds awfully pretentious, but whatevs. My stories, my brain. I make the rules up.

Anyways. I am super happy about this thing. When I finally for really-real realized I wasn’t going to continue to play roller derby (for various and sundry reasons), I had a firm talk with myself that went something like this:

Self: if you are not going to get out and get exercise and just be a layabout, then I expect you to do something useful that brings you joy.

Me: i will start writing again, like for real, with purpose.

Self: I don’t believe you

Me: Eff you, Self.

And then I wrote And The Woods (which was my first acceptance in about 6ish years?), and I wrote The Place Where We Belong, and I wrote & submitted First Day/Last Supper, and I started on my very first SF short, The Light’s Gone Out, Say Goodnight, a piece about numbers stations.

If you want to be super freaked out, click this link and listen to The Swedish Rhapsody Irdial. 

Rhapsody my ass.

I’m not entirely a layabout, I started taking jazz dancing with a friend who has nowhere to link now, and that’s super weird!? And I love it.

Same friend and I have been hatching nefarious plans for another creative project, and I’m pretty excited about that too.

But now, to sleep.

 

*Crimson: the people in the novel who are pretending to be vampires, for reasons. I think because it’s fun?

i did a thing. let me tell you about it.

ZeroDraft. I win at writing.
ZeroDraft. I win at writing.

And today, approximately 6 months after I started, I have finished the zero!draft of “The Place Where We Belong”, my YA book that contains real vampires (seriously, I appropriated the eff out of William Control. Don’t tell him. I didn’t put in a link because his site contains debauchery), fake vampires, maybe a werewolf, angels, fallen angels, the human offspring of fallen angels, a bi-kid, a gay-kid, a prophet,  hopefully some cultural diversity (even though things went a little crazy with the Irish/Gaelic naming conventions. Sorry for anyone that has to read the name Caoimhe. Ahem), and a more-or-less happy ending.

I may need more boyfriend, because right now there is an awful lot of roller derby in this thing.

This, is a bit from the near-end. So it might be a spoiler, or I might completely edit it out. You know how this thing goes:

Instead of tears, I gave him this: I reached and took the Blood King’s hand in mine. I curved my fingers around his. I was five centuries younger, I was new at death but I was good at being Crimson. Two boxes of natural blue black and all the blonde was gone. Caoimhe had given me my first pair of contact lenses. Now my eyes were the blue of a photoshopped ocean.

I was pretending within my pretend.

And maybe my hand wasn’t as warm as it had once been, but it still knew how to hold on.

and that, my sugar-lumps,  is all I got before bedtime!

signature2

Amber

I watch Pilots #1: Forever

amusingly, this TV season there are a bazillion shows that have piqued my interest. So I thought, when I watched the pilots, I would blog about them (Pilots for new shows, anyway. I expect TVD to be more of The Same). So, without further adieu, here on this week’s edition of I WATCH PILOTS: FOREVER!

(contains mild(?) spoilers)

Ioan Gruffudd/Judd Hirsch/Alana De La Garza/Louraine Toussaint.

First: expectation is that this would be an OMG I LOVE IOAN wasn’t he that guy? That did that stuff, with the accent and a Hornblower?

But let me get this straight right off the bat: I love me some Judd Hirsch.

Ioan is really tanned, and doing his best Sherlock. Then, much much info-dumping, which I didn’t need yet. HISTORY IN A NUTSHELL. At least it’s in his charming accent, which did not lull me into thinking the infodump was necessary, because what’s wrong with peppering this stuff in, yo? Although, now I know this is also a story about Ioan’s mystery, and not just the mysteries he is clearly going to solve. OH! GIRL MOMENT. It’s a we will tell you mostly all of the things in the first few minutes sorta show. And now, mysterious cop moment. And train accident. Murder mystery.  I am marginally bored, but now Judd Hirsch is back on screen so I am happier.

Then Judd went away.

…and more info dumping. This is: what not to do in your novel, kids.

Oh, but isn’t this one of the kids from the Jefferson Institute?

Mysterious Cop Sighting! Now in the Morgue!

And MURDERS!

MYSTERIOUS CALLER!

IT’S COMING FROM INSIDE THE HOUSE.

Oh, wait, wrong show.

15 minutes, still a bit bored, mostly because of the aforementioned info dumpings.

Now, more mystery.

Ioan is about to become Prime Suspect.

Now, flashback to the GIRL FROM BEFORE.

I kinda wanna watch the Judd Hirsh/Morgue Attendant-Assistant show instead of this one.

Then!

INEVITABLE HAPPENS. Twice.

I am not sold.

Why is Ioan so tanned? How the hell do you pronounce Ioan. I can’t remember.

I’m finding the musical score very Direct. Do not like.

Why is the medical examiner on the whole entire case? Why is the novelist on the case? At least Joan makes a speck of sense. Also, Joan. *happy sigh*

Also, unsurprisingly, show is very white.

And naked water time! Secret ain’t so much a secret no mo’!

Where is Judd Hirsch!?

Oh, but of course. Convenient won’t remember, it’ll be fuzzy now with more “aren’t you”

“no”

“weird”

Ioan does have nice crinkly eyes, but still too tanned.

I did not need the exit-monologue. This is such a Pilot.

Overall: 5/10

chances of continuing to watch, about the same. Flip a coin, make a bet. You might win!

in our next episode: Gotham!

 

 

 

 

ommm/writer

I found out about this cool, as in super-cool, ridiculously perfect-for-me writing program called ommwriter via author Tiffany Reisz (her site may not be SFW, depending on your idea of SFW. Be warned!). It looks like this:

Gingerbread

 

That’s it. it is a white background (this one is wintery, there are a few non embellished choices) and nothing else. if you want options, you can move outside of the main box and a small, dotted border shows up. Your wordcount sits in tiny type on the bottom. You can choose text/size, music or not (it comes with a super inoffensive new age selection, that I basically ignore, but is great for those of us that don’t always use soundtrack influences) and a choice of hearing your typing clicks or not. I find a quiet version of the typing click sounds soothing. I use this program to write brand new scenes, I don’t think it would work for editing because the brain uses different muscles for editing, but I find brand-new scenes I write twice as quickly using this program than my old favourite, Scrivener.

Anyway, it’s like $4 to download and I think you should!

ps: Gingerbread is now at 26, 755 words. That’s over 10K written since May 5. Which isn’t amazing by some standards, but hot dog it’s amazing by mine!

And The Woods Are Silent

on the weekend I had a dream about Bear (matociquala) and I dreamt that she’d given me a story prompt and I’d promptly woken up, and written an entire story based on the prompt.

I promptly forgot the prompt, but I mentioned it on facebook and Bear gave me a different one:

A fox with lovebird wings, who is looking for her father.

I haven’t gotten it exactly right, since I have, now, the story of Saki, who is the daughter of a fox and a (love)bird, who’s father may have come to find her.

I’m mildly fluttering on the character relationship dynamic, since it’s a MFF triad, at heart and aren’t they always, but this is how it came out.

Have a snippet:

And The Woods Are Silent

“Sometimes I can see her feathers in his mouth,” Saki whispers and hands tighten and there is Paisley’s breath and the brittle of her own hollow bones. 

Saki met Paisley at a café.  A wednesday and he was with Babia, a bubbly, brown-eyed girl he’d known for more years than he hadn’t.  They’d met for tea and when the clock struck seven, Babia stood to leave and when Paisley looked up, Saki was already staring.

Over dark spiced chocolate Paisley told Saki he’d been named by his sister, May, and when he turned out to be a boy, instead of a girl, his mother had said to her husband “We can change his name, it’s not too late”, and his father had said to his wife “Who are we to change our daughter’s name for love?”

When Paisley told Babia goodbye, when he told his parents he had found his place and that he was going to live with Arel and Saki, his father had protested and this time it was his mother who said – “Who are we to change our son’s name for love?”

###

I don’t think those parallel  statements about love are quite right yet, but I’ll get there.