Monday, February 20, 2012

We pause now for station identification

A rolling stone may gather no moss, but it can gain a lot of momentum and roll the wrong way.

At least, so I've learned this year.  I've discovered that it's pretty darned easy to get wrapped up in the "writerly-stuff" without actually writing anything. 

So, for the rest of this week, I'm going to go offline.  But that's not to say I won't be busy.

For one thing, I'm going to be taking the time to prepare a whole new series of interviews for the month of March. Some of the neat-o interviews to look forward to coming soon:
  • Comic book creator and anime expert
  • Publisher, editor and online writer
  • Literary agent
  • Many more sf, fantasy, romance (yes, romance!) and crime fiction authors
I've also got my eyes on a couple of non-fiction authors too, but I haven't contact them yet - so shhhhh...

So why take the week?  For one thing, if I can build six interviews in one night, that's three weeks of blog posts 95% done.  I wait for the responses to come in, and all that's left to do is formating.  But I take time to research my interviewee before I even ask the questions.  I try to read through a lot of the previous interviews (if there are any posted on the author's website), so I can avoid asking tired-out questions from the past.

But, on top of that, there are a lot of other writerly and non-writerly events coming up.
  • Blue Metropolis Montreal International Literary Festival
  • Arthur Ellis Awards Shortlist Event, with Howard Shrier (finalizing the details and working on an advertising campaign)
  • Easter concert (I'll be singing and co-directing)
  • Finishing The Man with the Silver Tongue (the second in the Mummer series)
  • Increasing my marketing presence for Hypergraphia Writing and Communication Services 
  • New publicity photos - can't wait!  The shoot is in two weeks with C2 Studios. We should know probably tomorrow if the site we've chosen is available.  Should be awwwwwe-summmmm!
And there are some very writerly things I have to look forward to, too, over the next six weeks.  I know these things are not having a direct impact on my ability to blog and run interviews, but they are a distraction, and I want to clear my plate in case I have some editing coming my way.
  • Feedback about the completely revamped Mummer's the Word from Verna (endish of February)
  • Feedback about Lady Butcher from Marc Coté (endish of February)
  • Feedback about a science fiction short story submitted to a new sf anthology published by Edge Science Fiction and Fantasy Publishing (March-ish)
  • Plotting Moon over Petticoat Bay (working title, a funny/satirical, historical, crime fiction, science fiction, horror mash-up) as my idea for the Muskoka Novel Marathon.  It's probably going to be a pain in the neck to market.
  • Plotting the story arc and editing the first few editions of Otherlings, a dark sf collection of novellas (five of which are already written satisfactorily)
  • Brainstorming the revamp of the third Mummer story:  The Mummer's Curse (working title)
  • Seeing what happens with a flash fiction story submitted to a CWC contest (mid-April).
Now, when you stop and look at the lists, you'd think that I was busy all the time, especially when you add in the day job and my regular church stuff.  Not so.  It's amazing what you can do if you cut out just one hour of TV every night.  I've watched a total of four hours of TV this month, so I have free time.  And even during the day job, there are lunch breaks, and during those periods when I'm running data, my brain is free to wander and plot for a minute or two at a time.

But most everything I need to do is done by email and phone calls, each taking no more than about five minutes apiece.  For the rest of the time, I do other stuff while waiting for responses.

And a lot of this stuff is over as of the middle of April - Blue Met, the AE Shortlist event, Easter - all happen within a couple of weeks of each other.  After that, I expect I'll be face-first in bed for a couple of days; and then after that, it'll probably be summer (the way this "winter" has gone), so you'll be hard pressed to see me at a computer indoors.

I could mention that I have a tendency of losing focus - and that this might be one of the reasons why I haven't been published yet, even after 19 years of trying.  (Yes, Tobin, I know:  "EPUB!  EPUB!  Direct to market!  GAH!")  I tend to spread myself too thin with multiple objectives.

But so long as I have something submitted at all times, I still figure I'm on track.  So long as I have the next stages of submission planned (after I get feedback from Marc, I edit, then I do X, then I do Y), then I consider myself focused.

This week off allows me to really sharpen that focus.  It's one thing to submit and patiently wait.  But it's another thing to break down the doors and make things happen.  I have enough material now that I can attack several fronts at once - and dang it, I want in!

So, anyhow, if you don't see anything new on Nine Day Wonder for a couple of days, here's a non-exhaustive list of some of the blogs I recommend.

Crime Writers of Canada National Crime Writing Blog
The Graveyard Shift 
Sasha Jackson Mysteries
Left to Write

Annie Off Leash
Type M for Murder
Kevin Craig
Michael Lorenson

I could write a list as long as your leg of all the blogs I haven't started following yet, but this is a good start.  And don't forget - if you like any of them, make a point of following them.  Folks like me, we get paid in "applause" - the number of hits to a site, the number of followers, etc.  So, if you like what you read, sign up and come along for the ride.

Until next time, Stay thirsty, my friends.

1 comment:

  1. Your "week-off" list looks like most people's Lifetime Achievement List, my friend. Stay thirsty, indeed. ;)