Tag Archives: 14th mansion

Update: “The 14th Mansion”

Writing Progress 130528I was supposed to be done with the next book — “The 14th Mansion” — by 5/15 and I’m not.  I let things interfere, and that was dumb and regrettable.

But I’m not looking back.  New goal is to be done by July 4th.  About 25,000 words left, give or take, then the editing part comes.

Sorry guys, release date is probably going to be September/October instead of July.

Next Novel Behind Schedule (and a little teaser)

Writing Progress 130326Somehow I’ve managed to get behind on the next novel.  It’s not like this is my first book, but it’s still hard to hit the 1,000 words per day quota when you’re working a full time job, participating in a martial arts club, raising kids, maintaining a blog (and whining about how you’re behind schedule), etc.

Time to buckle down.

This is going to be a bigger book than the last one, and not just in terms of total words.  It’s got more characters, more layers of perspective, and more complexity.

The 14th Mansion is story of three unlikely characters — a homeless man, a biker, and a witch — trying find a lost college student who may have fallen prey to a serial killer.  It has strange plot turns, twisted villains, occult themes, sex, profanity, and at every moment the threat of violence and doom.   It’s a dark book punctuated with points of light in the form of humor and the possibility of redemption.

And if I can get back on schedule, it will be released in July.

Writing Progress Report (and some perspective)

I’m a little behind the plan on the new novel, but after some extra writing time Friday night, I’m starting to catch up.  The 14th Mansion — which features characters from both of my previous novels by the way — should come in around 80,000 words.  Which means I’m more that a quarter of the way through in just 30 days.

I also entered a short story called Ms. Ishmael’s Box in a contest over at Litreactor.  So far the story has a 100% positive rating.  The prize?  A chance to get feedback from lots of great writers (including Chuck Palahniuk).

Speaking of Palahniuk, here’s a quote from the movie Fight Club which was based on his novel of the same name.  It leads nicely into what I want to talk about next:

“This is your life, and it’s ending one minute at a time.”

One of the things that has made writing for more fun and easy is my perspective.  Since putting my books up on Smashwords last year and really taking the plunge, I’ve used my martial arts training and knowledge of the occult to turn my perspective inside-out.

When I was younger, becoming a successful author seemed like an impossible task and an unattainable goal.  But now I see that if you want to be a writer, you just be a writer.  This applies to whatever a person wants to do or achieve.  I redefined the phrase ‘successful author.’  A successful author approaches the craft of writing with sincerity and writes stuff that people enjoy reading — no more and no less.

Defining success in terms of money is a trap.  Money is not lived.  Life is lived, and it is fleeting; it wants to be spent in the practice of whatever craft that beckons you.  This is your life, and it’s ending one minute at a time.

Whatever it is you want to be, I suggest you become it today.

Writing Progress on The14th Mansion

Writing Progress on The14th Mansion

Writing Goals for The 14th Mansion

By using firm goals, last year I wrote Ghilan in under 90 days, and this year I intend to write “The 14th Mansion” (the sequel) in the same length of time.  I’ve been outlining and writing snippets for about a month and I have 7,500 words as a starting point.  The goal is to finish by 5/15/13, spend a few weeks editing, allow a few weeks for formatting and cover production, and release on 7/1/13.

Here’s where I am, in terms of total words, so far.

Hey, fellow authors!  Open up a spreadsheet somewhere or start/maintain a journal, log your daily totals, and keep track.  Trust me, it works.  A solid baseline is 1,000 words per day.

Thanks to setting firm goals, I now know that 370 people have downloaded by books, and that 370 more readers than I had before I started.