Less Than Random Thoughts From a Science Fiction Author and Generally Good Guy [ Fawkes ]

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Now That Was Very Nice

Okay, 4-4-4-4-4- days off - very nice. But I'm ready to return to work - because, well, because it's the right thing to do? Join me,if you will. Ready or not.........

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Not As Easy As It Looks

The US holiday of Thanksgiving means I've been off work the last two days. I have had the chance to dedicate several hours to writing Time Diving (TD). I would say I have spent maybe 6 man-hours writing. I am transcribing the first draft, which was hand-written, to a text document. I have changed to direction of the books, from the start of the first draft to where it ends in my head. Especially the tone and the point-of-view (POV) have changed. As a result this is not merely a task of typing the long-hand into text. I have to alter and redo quite a bit. It's probably faster than doing a primary write at this point, but there's a lot of crafting which must occur. So, it's slow. I can spend significant time re-working a paragraph or integrating a new idea. My point is, it's slow. This is what I do, and I love the creative process, and the end-product, but it is still, quite literally, a labor of love. I have maybe laid-down perhaps 20 pages in these two days, maybe a bit less ( word count into computer stands around 33,500, heading to upwards of 100K or so). All that thunder and lightning, and, man, so little rain : (
Ah well, if it weren't so hard, it would be easy, right? I still have absolutely no idea when I'll approach a finished version of TD. By mid-spring would be outstandingly quick. Well, we'll know when we know, so hang in there with me. The story is a crazy, wild, somber ride, and I cannot think of anything I've read which is closely related.
So, have a great day, stay creative, and turn over a few rocks looking for happiness and meaning... I hope you succeed........

Thursday, November 25, 2010


Yes, made it... yes, made it... yes, really made it! Four days leisure and family (the good part and none of the rest). Hope y'all feel the same and have a wonderful break.......

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Almost There!

One more day till Thanksgiving 4-day weekend! I think I can, I think I can....

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Yes, Oh Hi Monday, No, Nothing Going On Here, Sir...

So here comes Monday, no big deal, right? I assume it will be a good day, a productive day, right? If I were suspicious, that would be a big disadvantage, am I right? So I am certain Monday will be a VERY good day. Hey, you in the back, third row, why are you laughing?

Saturday, November 20, 2010

The Slowness of Being

As I get farther into the author-thing, the more I realize it is a slow world. I am a non-artist, no drawing talent, can't sing, or play an instrument, so I am surprised as to what a slow world being creative is. Writing is slow, if it is to be worthwhile. Devoting a few hours here-and-there to writing means a 70,000 word novel will take the better part of a year to complete, counting edits, re-edits, devastating re-re-edits, etc. A good author can expect to turn-out, on average, one book per year. So, even a long-lived writer will produce only a modest inventory of work.
Slow is made all the slower in distribution. I submitted a couple books to a small publishing house several months ago and have not heard a peep since. (I actually check their website occasionally to see if they went belly-up) I sent a query to an agent a few weeks ago and have not heard a thing back. Slow, slow, and more slow. Suppose I discovered a previously unknown gem from a big name author (Bradbury, Heinlein, Vonnegut) and slapped my name on the cover. If I submitted it to a big publisher, while soliciting an agent, I'd be lucky indeed to see that book on Barnes & Nobles racks within 2 years.
With production and the pipeline being so slow, it poses an interesting barrier. As I write more, my approach and skills change. As a result, anything I push out there is badly out-of-date by the time it's new and fresh on the market. Also, if I have a rip-roaring idea to commit to paper, I know before hitting the first key that it won't be done and enjoyed for, well, you guessed it, a long, slow time. It's not frustrating, but it is an issue.
All that said, I continue to lay down the foundations of Time Diving, and continue to be pleased with my efforts to date. I'm still stalled in producing the print version of TPN, since I can't see galley prints, I think, using Create Space as the Print on Demand publisher. I've decided to wait till early December and use the "one-free-copy" offer they have with NaNoWriMo winners. That way I can produce a free copy and see if it looks right, and then use that manuscript as the template for actual production. Slow, but, as with everything else in writing, necessarily so, I guess.
Have excellent weekends, my friends, and I'll keep writing and keep you posted.......craig

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

A Mini-Post

So, I've had a few hours this week to 'knit' together some more of Time Diving. It is interesting to me as the author that some segments come together powerfully and easily. Others, I'm not as happy with. The latter I leave-in, figuring to cut-out and firm-up in the next edit. I really do like the story though! Breadth of imaginations, compelling events, well-developed characters. Seriously, I wouldn't say this if I didn't believe it. I'm really liking how TD is taking shape! I'll keep you posted, but you knew that already, right? As an obsessive weirdo, though, as I forge this book, I'm already thinking, "So what's next?" Honestly, I don't know, but I'd love to see a great ghost story. Part of me says 'do a scifi/otherworld tale', because I love them dearly, and part of me says to do a fantasy-world, as it can lay the foundation for future serial success. We, I can tell you, will find out ; )

Monday, November 15, 2010

Okay, It's Monday...

Okay, it is a Monday, but looking ahead, it doesn't look too bad. No, in fact, I have a feeling it will be a piece of cake - no problema - a walk in the park - simpler than Forrest Gump's math skills - shooting fish in a barrel. I'll get back to you...

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Ah the Simple Joy of It

Ah le simple plaisir d'une chose. O el jubilo de una cosa sencilla. Time Diving (TD) is taking flight! As I mentioned a couple posts ago, I'm past the set-up stages, and now I'm moving (or more properly, as you will discover in a few months when reading it, 'screwing with', 'crushing like bugs', or 'burning the wings off of with a magnifying glass') the players around. Oh the simple joy of creative writing! Seriously, I feel like I hope Andres Segovia felt as he dazzled us during a Spanish guitar recital, or like Michelangelo felt as he finely honed the angle of a statue. Now, please, I do not mean to suggest I'm on their level {or that they are on mine ; ) }, but creating, forging new items of beauty out of chaos, it is really quite a wondrous thing. Even if critics all agree my books are pedestrian, (not that they have, will, or can be forgiven for if they do) I am humbled by the process and the fact. If what I cough-up is worthy, then all the better. If not, well then it's simply my version of 'craft', as in Michael's store, home-made Christmas decorations, bric-a-brac, applique, n' est pas?
So, that said, I've little else to tell, truth be told. The week passed mysteriously management-free, which is either a good thing, or simply a prelude to being hit with what they've pent-up to disgorge - I'll let you know.........craig PS: (pro forma diurnum) I hope you personally have a spectacular weekend, that joy smacks you squarely in the heart, and that Monday will be a much much better day for having followed your epic 2-day break.........craig again

Monday, November 8, 2010

Okay, Week, what are You Going to Throw At Me?

Another day, another dollar. So I stick my head over the cliff and look-see what lies below. What do you have for me, Week? Pure joy? I think not; I work for Kaiser. Unmitigated anguish? No, how maudlin of you Craig. Well, I pray the goods out-weight the bads by a significant margin, and that I heard not one peep out of De Bozzes. I hope your week goes even better. And, PS, if you're doing NaNoWriMo, stop reading this post and get back to writing! ; )

Saturday, November 6, 2010

A Busy Yet Non-Productive Week

So, I had a busy week, doing every manner of thing, except writing. My management, who, if you follow this blog at all, you know I am less than infatuated with, has piled on me (all us doc's really, but it effects me) so many conflicting, contradictory, and non-patient oriented functions that it is all I can do at times to tread water. And no sneak-away breaks to write - poo! I had two, count them two, self-contradicting memos cross my desk and one impossible mandate. I know, I hear you say, "But, Craig, dude you only have 2 years and 5 months till you can bail, don't stress, dude!" In a normal world, populated with normal (or even normal-lite) people that would be true. But the world I live in is increasingly mean, petty, and capricious - bad combo's if y'ask me. Oh well, to paraphrase an old friend of mine Catullus, I will obdurate ( he actually said: At tu, Catulle, destinatus obdura).
So back to my point about writing. I penned a few more words in Time Diving (TD), but just that. I am pleased in that I am re-molding the first-pass text to a superior product. I am also just now past the intro section setting the tone and mechanics of the book, so I can let the action take place. Now it gets exciting! I always want to write science fiction in a manner which forces the reader to suspend disbelief as little as possible. To that end, in Anon Time and TD I make it a point to construct and detail how the incredible things which happen (eg. time travel) can happen. It may not be the most enthralling part of the novel, but I like it in there. Once the foundation has been laid I can then 'play' without guilt. So, anyway, I'm past that point, about 20, 000 words into TD, so I'm glad. You will be too, when you read the final text [ spoiler alert/teaser: John Lennon was not assassinated and is now Prime Minister - yeah, good stuff].
I did query my first agent for The Prisoner of NaNoWriMo (TPN), and have a series of 'next-best options' lined-up, so that's something. Not much progress on the print-on-demand edition of TPN, because there appears to be no way to preview the Create Space text before it is committed to print. I'd hate to print a novel with frame-shifted pages. And so it goes.
Well, off to accomplish chores and yard work and bike ride and nap and some writing and dinner and man am I wearing myself out just saying it!
Seriously, please have wonderful weekends yourselves, and, best case scenarios, I hope you all get 'lucky' - hey, it's the weekend, why the h-e-double toothpicks not! Peace out....craig