January 30, 2010

A pause to ponder

After my big push over my five day weekend, I took Wednesday and Thursday to think about where I was taking the story and Friday to do a bit more brainstorming and working out what I needed to nail down a bit more in the 20k or so I've written before moving on. The upshot is that I think the direction is okay but I'm taking the next few days to take a pass back over that 20k and flesh a few things out so I can move forward from a more solid base. This often happens to me about this stage, but this time because I've been sprinting and not going back over what I'd written, I do need the pause and a fast loop back. I'm not aiming to make what I've written perfect, just make sure I've got the bones of everything I need in place. We'll see if I need a few more pauses as I go given that I intend to keep using Write or Die as much as possible to get through this zero draft.

Today I spent most of the day at a patchwork class but then I came home and made it through Chapter One (and added some pages so technically, I'm still making progress). Tomorrow hopefully I'm get through a couple more chapters and add some more pages. It would be nice to finish the month with 100 pages done! Still aiming for zero draft done by the end of March.

In other news, it's hot, I've been doing pretty well with the diet and exercise portion of my goals for the year and niggly shoulder keeps on improving. Woot all round!

January 25, 2010

The simple things

Having Monday away from the day job always feels kind of decadent (even though it's a regular occurence with my schedule). It's nice to go to sleep on Sunday night knowing that one doesn't have to get up early, even if the grey cat apparently begged to differ this morning and demanded breakfast at six am. After which I went back to sleep.

Another lovely sunny not too hot, not too cold day in Melbourne. I have swum, caught up with the VT and eaten of most excellent orange and ricotta hotcakes at her cafe, caught up with other friends, done grocery shopping so that I can eat for the week and made my page count (hopefully after tomorrow I'll be somewhere in the closing-in-on-ninety pages vicinity, at which point I shall most likely have to stop and think a bit). Not a bad life really, even if the current influx of small boys in my street combined with school holidays means that it rather more punctuated with boy noises (ie strange thumps, yells of triumph during street cricket and the sounds of bike tires whirring around the court) than usual which can prove distracting at times.

Still it's good to see kids outside playing rather than stuck inside with a video game. I grew up in a street full of boys so have had more than my fair share of strange thump creation, cricket and football matches and hair raising bike chases (our street was bracketed on either end with two quite substantial hills which meant one could get up quite the speed burst...the trick being able to stop afterwards - I have a scar on my right knee to prove this).

And now, the daily report...

Progress - Holly

New pages - 11
Intriguing things - Unexpected plot directions
Annoyances - Not many.
Linear/non-linear - Linear
Music - Soundtrack
Location - Write or Die and Think.
Taking care of Mel - Swimming! Orange and ricotta hotcakes (hey treats are good too)!
Muse food - Soon to be administered

January 24, 2010

Not so lazy Sunday

Reporting in (which I forgot to do last night but I was distracted by the interesting vocal talents of the band playing at a neighbours party and Iron Man).

So far we have stuck to the plan, so go me. Exercise wise yesterday I did my last c25k run for the week on the elliptical and today I did Cardio Coach on the elliptical and then in a fit of sunshine inspired craziness, went for a swim too. So go me lol. Am officially starving though and ready for a big dinner which is next on the to-do list. Have met my page goal each day too. I think I deserve pancakes tomorrow so will head on over to the VT's cafe and try theirs.

Progress - Holly

New pages - 11 today and 13 yesterday
Intriguing things - Reluctant knights
Annoyances - Not many.
Linear/non-linear - Linear
Music - Soundtrack
Location - Write or Die and Think yesterday. Word and Think and Write and Die and Think today.
Taking care of Mel - Swimming! Running. Salad galore.
Muse food - Robert Downey Jr. Though he's more muse food for the next book...

January 22, 2010

Five by five

Yay, it is the weekend. And an extra long five day weekend at that. My goal is ten pages a day (with the theory that this will bootstrap me up to something like 80 pages which is almost one hundred pages which is almost a third of a book...oh the strange mind games writers play lol) and to do some exercise every day. Today I went swimming for the first time in forever having had the physio sign off to do a limited amount of backstroke and sculling. Still, was nice to be in the pool on a warm morning. Tomorrow will be Day 3 of Week 2 of the Couch to 5k challenge.

And writing wise, I can give myself a tick as well. So onwards and upwards to Day 2 tomorrow.

Progress - Holly

New pages - Fourteen
Intriguing things - Very very mean fae. Bad fae! Who likes Comfortably Numb (the Scissor Sister's version...go figure)
Annoyances - No attention span this afternoon but then things flowed nicely after dinner.
Linear/non-linear - Non
Music - Soundtrack, mostly Scissor Sisters
Location - Write or Die and Think.
Taking care of Mel - Swimming! Quinoa! Lovely blood orange sorbet for treats!
Muse food - Er, I'll think of something...but bought (after seeing a recommendation on Justine Larbalestier's blog) Gurrumul by Geoffrey Gurrumul Yurupingu and it is a beautiful CD. Sad and soothing at the same time.

January 20, 2010

Wednesday, full of lots of stuff (but no woe)

Good enough for a sleepy Wednesday evening after a busy day at work. Need an early night!

Progress - Holly

New pages - Seven
Intriguing things - Very mean fae
Annoyances - Minimal
Linear/non-linear - Non
Music - Soundtrack
Location - Write or Die and Think.
Taking care of Mel - One early night coming up. More enchiladas (yum!)
Muse food - Hopefully can keep eyes open long enough to read a bit.

January 19, 2010

Onwards and so forth

So the last book is starting it's journey out into the world today and we've had a few weeks of light writing and brainstorming and kicking around of ideas but I have enough now to get stuck in and ideally, I'd like to have a draft of this by the end of March, so time to get back to the routine. I'm at 5k now and the draft should be around 80ish if things run true to form, so need to crank out 310 or so pages in two and a half months. Which is perfectly do-able (knock wood, throw salt etc). For one thing head down and write is a distraction from what's going on over there with the other book (fingers crossed!) : )

Therefore, herewith, metrics are recommencing.

Progress - Holly

New pages - Seven
Intriguing things - Mean Fae
Annoyances - Minimal
Linear/non-linear - Non
Music - Shakira and Scissor Sisters
Location - Write or Die and Think.
Taking care of Mel - Physio. Elliptical (week 2 of couch to 5k commences). Chicken enchiladas.
Muse food - A smattering of Grey's. Soon off to bed with good book.

After some technical difficulties

I'm back blogging today at Nobody Writes It Better (now that we've defeated a virus attack, honestly...aren't there better things to do with your time?) on gadget love, stationery love and balancing the two!

Come visit me!

January 17, 2010

For those looking for a good coffee fix...

Check out Miss Marmalade in Brunswick (126 Union Street) which is the newest venture of the lovely VT and her hubby. I can vouch for the awesomeness of breakfast but am not a coffee drinker so I'll toss you to the experts who will vouch for the awesomeness of that!

Open 7 days a week and best of all, that awesome breakfast is of the all day variety.

January 09, 2010

Slowly slowly

The brain is starting to recover from post book-ness. Have taken a few days off writing and lolled around but am now starting to circle back to the wips. The one I think I want to write first is a bit of a mystery at the moment. I know the hero and heroine. I know the world. I just don't know what the big external plot thing is. And even, though I rarely know that when I start a book, I always get to the point where I think I should know and then I freak out. It just seems to be happening early this time.

It doesn't help that I'm also getting snippets from the book after this one...but that one definitely is after this one in time and I can't imagine how stuck I'd get trying to head into that one without knowing what happens in this one lol

So I will sit down later and do some brain dumping and see what happens. Which will most likely be followed by more scratching of the head. Until then, I shall just keep circling the story in my head and listening to the scene snippets it's telling me and let things brew. And try not to freak out.

Books read in 2010

These are my read for the first time books in 2010. Newest at the top, oldest at the bottom.

(e) means, funnily enough, read in e-book. I read e-books on the iPhone and my brand spanking new Sony Reader.

Books read in 2010

How to Bake a Perfect Life - Barbara O'Neal
With This Fling - Kelly Hunter
Death at Wentwater Court - Carola Dunn
Little Fuzzy (e) - H. Beam Piper
The Secret Diaries of Miss Miranda Cheever - Julia Quinn
Nine Rules to Break when Romancing a Rake - Sarah MacLean
The Best Laid Plans (e) - Sarah Mayberry
Creation in Death - J.D. Robb
Pegasus - Robin McKinley
Mind Games - Carolyn Crane
Strawberries for Dessert (e) - Marie Sexton
The Iron Duke - Meljean Brook
A Dangerous Thing (e) - Josh Lanyon
Heaven's Spite - Lilith Saintcrow
Fatal Shadows (e) - Josh Lanyon
Double Blind (e) - Heidi Cullinan
Cryoburn - Lois McMaster Bujold
The Search - Nora Roberts
Cold Magic - Kate Elliott
Love is Hell - Anthology Scott Westerfeld, Justine Labarlestier, Melissa Marr & others
Innocent in Death - J.D. Robb
Dark Road to Darjeeling - Deanna Raybourn
Graceling - Kristin Cashore
The Accidental Wedding - Anne Gracie
Breathless - Anne Stuart
Moonshine - Alaya Johnson
Under Heaven - Guy Gavriel Kay
I Shall Wear Midnight - Terry Pratchett
Sizzling Sixteen - Janet Evanovich
Earth to Hell - Kylie Chan
Power and Majesty - Tansy Raynor Roberts
Reckless - Anne Stuart
Blameless - Gail Carriger
Maybe This Time - Jennifer Crusie
A Conspiracy of Kings - Megan Whalen Turner
Wicked Intentions - Elizabeth Hoyt
Her Secret Fling - Sarah Mayberry
Eon - Alison Goodman
Ruthless - Anne Stuart
My Reckless Surrender - Anna Campbell
Singing the Dogstar Blues - Alison Goodman
Unholy Ghosts - Stacia Kane
Last Night's Scandal - Loretta Chase
A Kiss At Midnight - Eloisa James
Revealed - Kate Noble
I Kissed An Earl - Julie Anne Long
Savor the Moment - Nora Roberts
His At Night - Sherry Thomas
Naamah's Curse - Jacqueline Carey
The Forbidden Rose - Joanna Bourne
Mouse and Dragon - Sharon Lee and Steve Miller
House Rules - Jodi Picoult
The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet's Nest - Stieg Larsson
Red Hot Renegade - Kelly Hunter
Silver Borne - Patricia Briggs
Magic Bleeds - Ilona Andrews
Blue Dragon - Kylie Chan
The Girl Who Played With Fire - Stieg Larsson
Red Phoenix - Kylie Chan
Changeless - Gail Carriger
The Queen of Attolia - Megan Whalen Turner
White Tiger - Kylie Chan
Saltation - Sharon Lee and Steve Miller
The King of Attolia - Megan Whalen Turner
Blood Magic - Eileen Wilks
The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo - Stieg Larsson
Enchanted Glass - Diana Wynne Jones
The Changeover - Margaret Mahy
Wild Ride - Jennifer Cruise and Bob Mayer
Untameable Rogue - Kelly Hunter
Something About You - Julie James
Shalador's Lady - Anne Bishop
Intertwined - Gena Showalter
The Dark Griffin - K J Taylor
The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms - N.K. Jemisin
The Dead Travel Fast - Deanna Raybourn
Special Delivery - Heidi Cullinan (e)
Skinwalker - Faith Hunter
Victory of Eagles - Naomi Novik
Silver Falls - Anne Stuart
Lover Avenged - J.R. Ward
Peeps - Scott Westerfeld
Committed - Elizabeth Gilbert
That Summer - Sarah Dessen
Dzur - Steven Brust (Not sure how I haven't managed to read this before, as I am a Vlad fan...but somehow I did)
Plum Lucky - Janet Evanovich
Proof By Seduction - Courtney Milan
Bed of Roses - Nora Roberts
Lead Me On - Victoria Dahl
Garden Spells - Sarah Addison Allen
The Secret of Everything - Barbara O'Neal
Demon Night - Meljean Brook

January 06, 2010

If I were...

Not a writer, I might be coherent but having handed the revised version of the book back to la agent on Monday, I now officially have post book brain...therefore a meme (as spotted on Tumblr via un-sate-able)

If I were a month, I’d be September.
If I were a day of the week, I’d be Sunday.
If I were a time of day, I’d be 9.07pm.
If I were a planet, I’d be Neptune.
If I were a sea animal, I’d be a sea otter.
If I were a direction, I’d be South.
If I were a piece of furniture, I’d be a chaise longue.
If I were a liquid, I’d be expensive champagne.
If I were a gemstone, I’d be an emerald.
If I were a tree, I’d be a Jacaranda.
If I were a tool, I’d be a drill.
If I were a flower, I’d be a cornflower.
If I were a kind of weather, I’d be a perfect spring day.
If I were a musical instrument, I’d be a cello.
If I were a color, I’d be aqua.
If I were an emotion, I’d be inspiration.
If I were a fruit, I’d be an orange.
If I were a sound, I’d be laughter.
If I were an element, I’d be water.
If I were a car, I’d be an convertible (most likely an Aston Martin)
If I were a food, I’d be a cheese cake.
If I were a place, I’d be the Discworld.
If I were a material, I’d be satin.
If I were a taste, I’d taste like margaritas.
If I were a scent, I’d be Red Roses by Jo Malone.
If I were an animal, I’d be a black cat.
If I were an object, I’d be a novel.
If I were a body part, I’d be an eye.
If I were a facial expression, I’d be a grin.
If I were a song, I’d be One - U2.
If I were a pair of shoes, I’d be long black boots.

What would you be?

January 02, 2010

Ugh but amusing

Just had one of those fallen-hard-asleep weird dreams that was getting progressively less pleasant and picking up speed towards nightmare territory. Luckily I woke up (but now I'm staying awake long enough for the brain to re-set so I don't just fall back into it as I sometimes do hence the late night blogging) but after a part where I was trying to get back somewhere (and being thwarted (cancelled flights, flooded roads complete with "drive here signs" that led into deep rushing water and resulted in floating cars, though also very apologetic valet service by the road traffic/car hire folks) I got to where I was going (a big old house partly under construction) where I was either daughter of the house or head of security or both and the patriarch of the place was under threat (not sure who that was).

An unpleasant someone was outside with some sort of big gun but I was fairly sure I could outsmart them. But the (only) very amusing part is, they had accomplices inside, who I'd just uncovered and the message the shooter was telling them to pass on to lure the patriarch out (transmitted via some sort of steam punkish ticker tape machine) was "Tell him the latest Pratchett is out in Omaha". To which I replied "Oh for God's sake, he already HAS the latest Pratchett!"*laughs and laughs and laughs* At which point I woke up.

So yes, my subconcious is weird (or wine and popcorn and Mamma Mia followed by Diana Wynne Jones don't mix or the thunderstorm outside is messing up the ether or I'm about to write a steampunk western set in Nebraska (the mind boggles)) but at least the people populating it have good taste in reading material! I'm still laughing.

And now, back to bed.

January 01, 2010

Happy New Year!

Happy 2010 everyone. It's been a wild and stormy New Year's Eve here in Melbourne but the fireworks still looked fab from all accounts.

I hope this year (and decade) brings you dreams come true, new adventures, pampering, naps, wonderful friends, peace, love and happiness!

Let's make 2010 awesome!