why-the-writing-is-slow

It’s Blursday

It’s Blursday

I had my eyes dilated at 8:15 this morning. It is now 1:41 PM and I still can’t see clearly out of my left eye. The light sensitivity is better, but I had to turn down the brightness on both of my monitors. And I couldn’t see to drive a certain young man to class, but attendance isn’t mandatory so rather than pull Darling Husband out of meetings, we all just stayed in because it’s Blursday.

With everything going on last week, it wasn’t as much of a word week as I’ve had. I still made my target of 500 words a day for six days (words on Sunday are bonus words), so it wasn’t a bad week. It just wasn’t as prolific as the previous weeks have been. But that’s okay.

The synopsis for The Coral Throne is coming slowly. Which, it can come slowly — I’m not in a rush to get to it, and I want to make sure I get things figured out before I get to the scene where X has to attack Y and how does that work exactly? (You’ll find out. I promise. But I have to work out the details.)

There’s also this other project of mine, which currently has the placeholder title of “Frog and Fae are Friends.” I put the excerpt that popped into my head and wouldn’t get out into my newsletter a few weeks ago, and it’s been percolating in the back of my brain since. I think this might be the next Patreon project if the sex stays behind closed doors, and I’m trying to worldbuild without pushing the existing Coral Throne worldbuilding out of my head. If you missed the excerpt in the newsletter, I’ll pop a short sample of it down below. It may turn into a fantasy Sherlock Holmes kind of thing, which would be new for me, but that seems to be the direction it’s leaning. We shall see.

Still waiting on edits for Morrigan’s Heir, but if my editor’s week last week was anything like mine? I get it. I TOTALLY get it. And considering that I’m maybe a chapter and a half from finishing The Sea Prince? I can wait — a delay lets me get this manuscript finished before diving into edits, and gives me the space to let The Sea Prince get out of my head before I go back to reread it for revision. It’s all good.

So, tell me what you think of the excerpt.

Works in Progress

The Sea Prince
(The Coral Throne, Book 1)

92468 / 120000 (77.06%)

Placeholder title “Frog and Fae are Friends.” — Excerpt

Desperate times call for truly fucked up measures.

I know better than to mess with mages, let alone steal from them. I know. But I was at the very end of my non-existent rope. It had been a long, hard winter already, and there were still three moons before even an hope of a thaw. The benevolent shelters for the needy were full to bursting, and even I’d had the coin, the cheap inns were full as well. There was not a bed or a slice of floor to be had anywhere in the slums of Alatrea. Not for the likes of me.

What there was, though, was a mage, who’d taken residence in a posh, new, townhouse right before the first snow. He hadn’t been settled long enough to claim the place as his home-ground – that took at least six moons for the strongest mage, and a year or more for the average spell-slinger. That mean that the usual protection spells weren’t going to be foolproof yet.

I just wasn’t usually that much of a fool.

Posted by EASchechter in annoyance, easily amused writer, excerpt, forthcoming works, Frog and Fae, Planning, plot bunnies, progress, The Sea Prince, The White Raven, the-end-is-near, upcoming books, upcoming work, why-the-writing-is-slow, WIP, wordcount, 0 comments
An Advanced State of Higgledy-Piggledy

An Advanced State of Higgledy-Piggledy

The first day of class is the perfect time to tell someone that their class isn’t at this campus, it’s at THAT one all the way on the other side of town. Right?

Needless to say, today has been in an advanced state of higgledy-piggledy.

I’m trying to convince my son that they’re predisastering the semester for everyone’s convenience. I’m not sure he’s buying it, though. Then again, I’m not sure I’d be buying it if I found out an hour before class that we have to drive half an hour to the back of beyond, to the campus with “Warning: Bear Crossing” signs on the walking paths. Oh, and if the person who was supposed to be doing the driving wasn’t home…

We made it work. The campus is pretty. There’s a Starbucks nearby (because of course there is), and the teacher seems to be a good sort.

But now you know why I’m getting to my blog post after 5PM Eastern… and since it’s after 5PM, I need to go start cooking dinner. Back shortly.

(time passes)

Two and a half hours later, I’m back to finish this post, and hopefully get some words in on The Sea Prince. Today feels like it’s been a lot longer than the clock says — the clock says 7:51PM. My body says 11:51PM and you should have been in bed two hours ago.

I’m not sure why we were all in such an all-fired rush to get older when we were kids. It’s overrated and I want my money back.

Off to attempt words. Wish me luck.

Preorders

Coming January 30th to all your favorite bookstoresValley of Shadows (Heir to the Firstborn, Book 7)

Print preorder is now available on Amazon and Barnes and Noble, which means you should be able to order the paperback at your favorite brick and mortar bookshop.

Works in Progress

The Sea Prince
(The Coral Throne, Book 1)

64370 / 120000 (53.64%)

Appearances!

For ONE DAY ONLY, I’ll be having a Meet and Greet at the Spellbound Bookstore in Sanford, Florida! I will be there for 3PM to 4PM on January 21st, 2024. Come out and support small business!

Posted by EASchechter in a-writers-life-is-never-dull, appearances, forthcoming works, promotions, Release date, The Sea Prince, Valley of Shadows, why-the-writing-is-slow, WIP, wordcount, Writer on the Go!, writing-mom, 0 comments

Fourth and Goal

No, I don’t watch football. Well, not anymore. I used to, but the last time I watched football really was… well, yesterday, to be honest. But it was the Funday Football on Disney+, where they did real time animation of the football game from London (it was hilariously glitchy.) No, In this case, fourth and goal doesn’t mean how far you have to go in football. It’s how far we have to go in 2023. October 1st marks the beginning of the fourth quarter. I’ve done my fourth quarter planning and my goals are up on my kanban board. It’s time to look toward bringing this year to a close.

Kanban, research shelf and Ink.

My immediate goals? Finish Balance of Power. Keep working on The Sea Prince. Edits on Morrigan’s Heir will be in some time this month, so I’ll be turning those around to get the book out by the end of 2023. And then I have to revise Morrigan’s Wrath to get that in to the editor. The anniversary edition of House of Sable Locks will be coming out soon (how soon? I don’t know!) and there are things to be done for that. There’s research that I really should get back to doing, although that’s lower priority to closing out the year and revisiting my business plan for 2024. I’m also considering pulling some of my short stories and getting them up for sale, but that may be a 2024 goal and not a 2023 goal.

Balance of Power
Heir to the Firstborn, Book 7

30416 / 90000 (33.80%)

The Sea Prince
The Coral Throne, Book 1

62124 / 120000 (51.77%)

Work on The Sea Prince has slowed down a little, and will slow down even more once the edits come in. Co-writing is much more of a juggling act than writing a book solo, because my interruptions rarely coincide with Danielle’s interruptions, which means that one of us is usually waiting on the other to look over things. We’ll eventually get the hang of this and get this book done.

The SPFBO judges have to announce their finalists by October 31st. This means that, at some point this month, I will find out if Written in Water will continue on in the contest. I’m surprisingly okay with either option. There are so many amazing books that have been cut already so if I am cut, I’ll be in fantastic company.

Keep an eye out for a special blog post/newsletter post in the next week or so — I’ll be able to show you the beautiful new cover of House of Sable Locks!

Promotions!

A new Cavalcade of Authors promo is coming this month, from October 13th through the 15th. Again, 200 books or more free for download. For this one, I’ve put Forged in Fire into the pot.

There’s also a single day event on October 27th, hosted by Stephanie Freeman. You can find more information on that and sign up here. For that event, you can grab free copies of The Chronicles of John Zebedee!

Posted by EASchechter in 2023 plans, 2024 plans, accountability, Balance of Power, contest, cover art, edits, forthcoming works, Heir to the Firstborn, John Zebedee, planner stuff, Planning, promotions, publishing, Revisions, Sable Locks, short story, The Sea Prince, The White Raven, upcoming books, upcoming work, Updatey things, why-the-writing-is-slow, WIP, wordcount, Written in Water, 0 comments

Late Monday

It’s later than I usually write my blog, but today has been a day of errands and distractions. I haven’t accomplished much in term of either research or writing today. I suppose this kind of counts as post-novel ennui. Which is okay — I’ve been reading, and basically taking a brain break. Which I don’t think I do nearly enough of. I’m out of the habit, really. Writing a weekly serial on top of writing a series does tend to eat a lot of your free time.

I’m currently reading Babel, by RF Kuang, which is fantastic and the world building features a magic system unlike anything I’ve ever read. HIGHLY recommend this one. But that’s not what had me distracted today. Nope. Today I got into my files and was reading some old game posts from back before I was writing full time. If you’ve been around long enough, you know that I really started writing when I started playing The Night Court, a Play-by-email Role play game based on the Kushiel books by Jacqueline Carey. I still have all of those posts (saved from oblivion when Yahoo Groups went away.) Occasionally, I open the program that I had to use to download them and go back through them.

The Night Court was a grand time, and several talented writers honed their skills during the years the game ran. I’m not the only published writer who got their start in Yahoogroups, playing in Jacqueline’s sandbox (and with her blessing. She knew about the game, and her only rule was that we could not play with her characters. So our game was set several hundred years before the books.)

It’s fun to go back, on occasion, and revisit where you started. There was some good stuff in there, and now their find memories and a heaping helping of nostalgia. Back to where it all began.

But really, I need to stop revisiting the old stories and get on to writing Broken Feathers.

Tomorrow.

Posted by EASchechter in post novel ennui, thinking thinky thoughts, why-the-writing-is-slow, 0 comments

Sniffle

I have no idea what this virus was that hit me like a ton of lead-coated bricks. It wasn’t the flu, and it wasn’t Covid — the tests for both came back negative. If it was a cold, it was a much beefier cold than I have ever experienced before, because it’s been over a week and I’m still dragging. I’m better than I was, but still… the brain fog is real. And the fatigue. There was a lot of sleep last week. And surprisingly, there was a decent amount of words. I can’t remember what I wrote for most of them, but my word counter says I did actually write.

The White Raven: Morrigan’s Wrath
(The White Raven duology, book 2)

64046 / 90000 (71.16%)

I have a month and a half to finish this up before the end of the school year. And Camp Nanowrimo started on the 1st, so I’m observing National Novel Finishing month, and I’m going to get as much of this done in April as I can.

Once this book is in, I’ll be done for the summer, at least until edits on Morrigan’s Heir come in. So I’ll be working on the worldbuilding for The Sea Prince, so I can get a better handle on that book, as well as the synopsis for the book I didn’t think I was going to write — Heir to the Firstborn, book SEVEN. I remember distinctly telling someone that I was done with Adavar. There were no more stories to be told in that universe. And then the main character walked out of my subconscious mind and said “Really? What about me?” His name is Kaspin and he’s just as much of a brat as Owyn. Once I have a story and a title, I’ll start writing and putting this up a chapter at a time on Patreon, the same as the original books. I don’t anticipate starting back with either The Sea Prince or this unnamed Heir to the Firstborn book until fall, but we’ll see how it goes over the summer.

I’ll also be working on putting together an outline for Imaginative Anthropology over the summer, so I can start planning out more targeted research and reading. That’s something I can do while traveling, which we have planned for the summer. This way to the college tours!

Posted by EASchechter in 2023 plans, accountability, Adavar, forthcoming works, Heir to the Firstborn, Imaginative Anthropology, Patreon, Planning, The Sea Prince, The White Raven, why-the-writing-is-slow, WIP, wordcount, Worldbuilding, Writer on the Go!, 0 comments

AHHHH-chooo!!!!

I went to a conference that had confirmed COVID cases, and came home to catch a cold.

It is just a cold — I tested at home, then went to urgent care for a flu test this morning and they also ran a COVID test. Both came back negative, so it’s just a cold. And I’m sure that I caught it at home because both my husband and son got sick last week and shared it with me. We have no idea where they caught it.

I haven’t been this sick in nearly two years (we all got Disney crud when we went right before the Delta wave hit in 2021). I’ve forgotten what it was like!

Now, this means that my brains are soup, and my focus is nonexistent. But I have two-thirds of a manuscript and more words to write, so here we are.

The White Raven: Morrigan’s Wrath
(The White Raven duology, Book 2)

59593 / 90000 (66.21%)

I have just over a month and a half, and I’m fairly confident that I’ll have this done on time. Assuming that my brains stop feeling like soup.

I realized something the other day. June will be the tenth anniversary of the publication of my modern erotic classic* House of Sable Locks. I went and talked to the publisher, and there might be a little something in the works for the anniversary. More as I know more. But ten year anniversary of what may arguably be the best book I have ever written is something I hadn’t expected to get away from me.

It’s a little daunting, to think that your best book ever was your second book, and that every book since then has been trying to reach those heights. I think I came really close with Written in Water. But I’m also the worst person in the world to rank my own books. I love them all! Same with characters (although Owyn will always be my absolute favorite.)

Speaking of Owyn, I got bonked by a plot bunny last week, and there’s more than likely going to be a seventh book set in the same world as Heir to the Firstborn. One of the main characters waltzed out of my subconscious and wants his own book, thank you very much. He’s going to be as much of a brat as Owyn. I can tell already. No title yet, but once I know, and once I get started writing, those will go up on Patreon in the same way that Heir to the Firstborn did.

It’s getting late, and there’s dinner than needs to be made. I discovered a vegan Tikka Masala sauce, and I haven’t had Tikka Masala in a year and a half. Time to go see if I like it! (I hope I do. I bought four jars!)

*House of Sable Locks was named a modern erotic classic by the now-defunct Cliterati magazine, and I found out while on a field trip to Legoland with a bunch of fourth graders!

Posted by EASchechter in 2023 plans, deep thoughts, Heir to the Firstborn, Sable Locks, slow-writer-is-slow., The White Raven, why-the-writing-is-slow, WIP, wordcount, Written in Water, 0 comments

Recovery

It’s been a long week, and one that didn’t involve nearly as many words as I’d have liked.

Last Tuesday, we settled in for what promised to be two days of storm. Schools were cancelled for Wednesday, because Ian was bearing down on Tampa Bay. Now, we’re two hours from Tampa, and we were already starting to see the initial rains on Tuesday as we got home. The storm was MASSIVE.

You’ve probably seen the news at this point. We were extremely lucky — we didn’t flood. We didn’t even lose power. Yard cleanup took two days, and I have the roof guys coming next week to check and see if the roof made it through the winds. We were relatively unscathed.

But I also did next to no writing last week, because I had next to no focus, and very little sleep (hurricanes are LOUD!)

The White Raven: Morrigan’s Wrath

1316 / 90000 (1.46%)
***

The Sea Prince
(The Sea Prince, book 1)

38914 / 120000 (32.43%)

What I did do was work on incorporating edits into the Heir to the Firstborn books, and the first three are up. Wings of Air will go up later this week, and the preorders for Visions in Smoke and Children of Dreams will be up later this week as well.  I am not quite sure what the heck is going on with the paperbacks — they’re supposed to be available, but no one seems to have them yet.  I’m about ready to order them myself and list them on my website — I’ll have an exclusive!

Hrm…might not be the worst idea…

You all did know that I have a bookstore link on the website, didn’t you? The new books aren’t listed there yet — I don’t have any stock on hand, but copies are on the way.

The final chapter of John Zebedee and the Monstrous Town went live this morning, and next week, the first three chapters of John Zebedee Meets the Witch-Queen of the Elvenlands go live.  I’ll have that link next Monday, so watch for the blog next week. It’s a long one — it’ll run until January.

The box set for Rebel Mage drops tomorrow, too. I’ve been very lax in my marketing, so this has basically flown under the radar. It’s Amazon exclusive and on Kindle Unlimited.

Something to look forward to next week? The cover reveals for Visions in Smoke and Children of Dreams! In the meantime, check out Wings of Air, which should go live this week.

 

Posted by EASchechter in a-writers-life-is-never-dull, forthcoming works, Heir to the Firstborn, Hurricane, John Zebedee, presales, Rebel Mage, The Sea Prince, The White Raven, upcoming books, upcoming work, Visions in Smoke, why-the-writing-is-slow, Wings of Air, WIP, wordcount, 0 comments

In The Blink of an Eye…

Everything can change.

And in other news, this past weekend was a hell of a long year.

Shit happened. Shit happened that I am not at liberty to talk about, but the ripple effect is in play.

Now, I am fine. Darling Editor and Teen Boy are FINE. But there are extended family things that I must focus on, and priorities that must come first.

To that end, I will not be making any in person appearances for the remainder of 2022.

Children of Dreams (formerly titled Heir to the Firstborn: The Way Home) is now tentatively scheduled for sometime in 2023. No date yet. When I know, you’ll know.

As of right this moment, I’m not sure what’s going to be happening with writing in the fall. I will probably spend the fall focusing on editing, so that I can have Children of Dreams ready for you in 2023. I was poking at The Sea Prince, so I have a word update, but it may have to wait until things calm down for me to focus on writing.

The Sea Prince
(The Coral Throne, book 1)

34014 / 120000 (28.34%)

As things settle, this might shift and adjust. We will see.

John Zebedeee and the Heir to the Elvenlands is wrapping up — two episodes left after the one that dropped today. John Zebedee and the Monstrous Town will start August 1st. (Vella doesn’t give you a link until the first episode goes live, so once I have that, you’ll have it.)

Where Home Lies releases tomorrow, to wrap up the reissue of the Rebel Mage series. Which means that my last release for the year will be The Rebel Mage box set in October.

So… that’s where we are right now. If I miss a week on the blog, or miss a newsletter, please be patient with me. I’ll be back when I can.

In the meantime, if you can put some good thoughts out into the universe, I’d appreciate it.

Thank you all.

Liz.

 

Posted by EASchechter in 2022 plans, 2023 plans, appearances, John Zebedee, Rebel Mage, slow-writer-is-slow., The Sea Prince, Where Home Lies, why-the-writing-is-slow, writing-mom, 0 comments

Surprise! It’s a Convention!

Guess which romance writer whose blog you’re reading RIGHT NOW will be a guest at a convention starting THIS FRIDAY!

Yup. I was asked last week, and I’ll be a guest at virtual Chessiecon November 26th – 28th. Since it’s virtual, I don’t have to go to Maryland in November (yay! But also boo! because there are people I love in Maryland and doing it this way means no hugs.)

My schedule:

Friday, 6:00PM Eastern — Do Immortals Enhance or Detract From your Story?

Friday, 10:30PM Eastern — Reading. (Hrm… what to read?)

Saturday, 10:00AM Eastern —  How Has Diversity Affected SF/F?

Saturday, 2:30 PM Eastern — Where is the Indigenous American Fantasy?

Saturday, 8:30 PM Eastern — Genre Mixing

Sunday, 10:00 AM Eastern — Your Universe, Your Gods

Sunday, 11:30 AM Eastern — Has Fantasy Lost its Wonder (moderating)

The convention will be held via Zoom and Discord, and panel links will be up on Friday.

In other news, Heir to the Firstborn: The Crossroads comes out next week. To celebrate, I’ve made Written in Water FREE all this week!  You can grab a copy wherever ebooks are sold.

(And for some reason, WordPress isn’t letting be upload the ad graphic. Sigh… if it’s not one thing, it’s two things.)

Not much else is happening, mostly because it’s been a busy week, and about to be another busy week. Last weekend was the RWA National Convention, which was fantastic. And this weekend… well, there’s something involving a lot of cooking. And cleaning.

There might not be as many words as there should be this week… and definitely not as many in this post as there could be. There were some last week, but not many.

Heir to the Firstborn: The Way Home
(Heir to the Firstborn, book 6)

50198 / 150000 (33.47%)

If you celebrate this week, have a happy. If you’re traveling, stay safe.

In this time for expressing gratitude, know that I appreciate each and every one of you. Thanks for being on the other side of the internet.

 

Posted by EASchechter in a-writers-life-is-never-dull, appearances, Chessiecon, conventions, forthcoming works, Grateful writer is grateful, Heir to the Firstborn, promotions, Release date, upcoming books, upcoming work, why-the-writing-is-slow, WIP, wordcount, writing, Written in Water, 0 comments

Boom! Christmas Everywhere!

It’s November 1st! You know what that means, right?

Christmas everywhere!!! Never mind Thanksgiving, it’s the official start of the Christmas season!

Which… yeah, hold your horses there. I like Thanksgiving. And I’m of an age where the Christmas season doesn’t start until the Macy’s parade is over (and until the Hallelujah Chorus is sung at Darkover/Chessiecon… but that’s geeky me, not New Yorker me.)

But the Christmas season has been getting closer and closer to summer every year, and today I had my first “November 1st… Christmas EVERYWHERE!” experience outside of retail.

School starts here at 7:25AM. So we leave just before 7AM, and head out (in the dark!) for school drop-off. It’s before dawn November 1st…

And there’s a Santa inflatable outside one of the houses down the street.

Wait… that was NOT there yesterday! And trick or treating here goes until 8PM.  So someone went out last night, when it was dark as the bottom of a barrel and Florida cold, and started decorating for Christmas.

(For the record? Our tree goes up after Thanksgiving, and stays up until Twelfth Night/Epiphany/Three Kings Day/Little Christmas.)

Today is also the first day of NaNoWriMo, and I’m not doing it this year.I have page proofs for Heir to the Firstborn: The Crossroads to finish, and those words don’t count towards Nano. Preorders for Crossroads are up, and the book goes on sale November 30th (so I really need to finish these page proofs! Then I have to get my presentation ready for RWA Nationals. So I’m kinda booked this month. Good luck to all of you who are writing your fingers off this month! I wish you no typos and ample supplies of the beverage of your choice!

I am writing, though. Just not putting in the words that would win Nano for me. (see above, page proofs).

Heir to the Firstborn: The Way Home
(Heir to the Firstborn, book 6)

32418 / 150000 (21.61%)

Just finished and queued up Chapter 5, and in tonight’s writing sprints, I’ll dive into Chapter 6. Someone is in trouble, and for a change it’s not Owyn!

Not much else going on, and it’s time for me to run off to get in car line for school pickup. I wonder if there will be more Christmas on the way back?

 

Posted by EASchechter in 2021 plans, a-writers-life-is-never-dull, accountability, forthcoming works, Heir to the Firstborn, Nanowrimo, presales, publishing, slow-writer-is-slow., upcoming books, upcoming work, why-the-writing-is-slow, WIP, wordcount, writing, 0 comments