Sketchbook: Gracie

I’m taking a break from the book for a few days to let some ideas settle. While that sits and stews, I got in some art work on Wednesday:

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This is very much the rough cut, kind of like the state the book is in right now. This reminds me of a police artist sketch where it’s not an exact likeness, but in the ball park. Meet Gracie.

Of the bunch, Gracie for me is the most fun to write. She’s in her early 20’s (21, I think) and trying to sort out what to do with her life. She’s bold and opinionated, but learning that having all of the answers aren’t the same thing as having all of the solutions.

I tried to sketch up the hair cut she gets during the story, but I really didn’t get there. It’s supposed to be a fade on her right side with a pixie cut on the left, more or less. I’m not that hip to women’s hair styles.

Gracie is the polar opposite of her middle sister Agnes. I had fun writing scenes with the two of them, as they really challenged me: I want the characters to be recognizably different from one another, just by dialogue alone. The things they wear and other affectations are window dressing. I believe I have succeeded, just in the rough draft.

I’ll tighten up the draft soon and work more fictional magic, but anyway, it was fun to visualize my favorite character and get some sketching in.

Book Update: The Beginning Ends

As of 3:20 PM, Eastern Time, on May 30, 2017, two months from the official start of this process, the initial draft of what I hope to be my first published novel is complete.

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I cried so hard, you guys. I guess this is the male equivalent to birthing babies. I can see now why rejection letters are taken so personally.

Now begins the next phase of the operation: Formatting, editing, and punch-up.

I feel like I just lost fifty pounds.

/sinks back in chair

PS: I spent the money and upgraded to Genuine Word. Much, much, much better.

Book Update: Upgraded

So, this happened:

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Our duct-taped Chromebook has been replaced with a refurbished HP laptop. Thanks to the vagaries of technology, I think they ended up costing the same years apart. The HP is much more loaded, and HUGE.

According to the free word processing program that came bundled on the laptop, I already was over the 80,000 word count threshold, and am now in the 90,000s. I have no idea what to believe anymore. The formula of 150x(number of pages) says I’m at roughly 40,000. Who knows. Not me! (I really don’t how if you have to really crank up the margins for that formula to be relevant. I dare say a standard Word document holds far more than 150 words per page.)

I’m closer to the finish line. I have a clear stopping point, then it’s onward to polish the manuscript and prepare it for shopping around. I have every intention of continuing the story into at least one more book. Depending on what happens I may start making the Book Two draft while working on finalizing Book One. Much depends on much.

Anyway, the feedback from some additional readers has been encouraging, and I’m really hoping I’ve got something legit here. I’m starting to allow myself the luxury of imagining the book in print as a hardcover. This is a huge no-no, but as a thought exercise I am thinking about what the cover art would entail. That’s not for me to say, however. But it’s heady.

Off to dream of hardcover first editions…

Book Update: 80K

So, how’s the book coming along?

Well, it is said that novel-length writing starts in the area of 80,000 words.

/runs word counter

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I set a stretch goal of May 31 to finish the bare-bones rough draft. I’m on pace to meet that goal. I’m looking forward to punching up/editing the copy and formatting it for publishing.

Video Notes: Our last visit to the 2017 Epcot Flower & Garden Festival

Hey, it’s the weekend, which must mean that we went to Disney World! And son of a gun, wouldn’t you know it, we did!

Click here for the video if it’s not showing up below.

 

More notes and bonus features after the jump:

Continue reading “Video Notes: Our last visit to the 2017 Epcot Flower & Garden Festival”

RFA Lesson 4 is Up: Proportions

I see how it is: I get wrapped up in writing a book, and Rapid Fire Art does 2 tutorials inside of a week. Today’s lesson: Proportions!

Before I get into that, I want it to be known that I finally made time to derp around with my sketchbook, and as per Lesson 3, I was in fact trying to do 3D.

/tosses that lesson over my shoulder

Continue reading “RFA Lesson 4 is Up: Proportions”

Book Update: PerNoWriMos

Book writing has continued apace. At last glance I am around 192 standard Word pages, not formatted for publishing.

My pace has been so blistering (around 5 pages a day on average, since starting, with breaks in the early going) that I was starting to worry that I’m cramming a huge undertaking into a really short time, which is either a) really amazing or b) a recipe for disaster.

I was thinking of an appropriate parallel to this experience, and remembered that there is such a thing: NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month).

Back in the days when blogging was young and idealistic (harp music), and always on the lookout for content, somebody came up with NaNoWriMo. The concept was to write a full length novel in 30 days, with minimal editing. I did not participate.

I was wondering, however, how long I’ve been at it, writing my initial draft. Thanks to the magic of bullet journaling, I have an answer: Since March 30.

Continue reading “Book Update: PerNoWriMos”