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Monday, 29 December 2014

Writing Journal: How I come to be here, my writing journey so far


I spent years 5 & 6 of primary school in a special class learning to read. It was right then that I wanted to write. It was right then that I made my first attempt.

A man came to our class. I remember nothing about him except that he listened to my desire to write and and gave be a workbook to write my first story. It was about man's first trip to Mars and I tried to write for about three pages of it before giving up. (I still have that first story in my head,but it has evolved a bit.) I found the book years later, it was unreadable. Back then I could just barely read, and could not write, but I love stories.

So I learnt to live stories in my head and learned to read. A first it was books, starting with the Hobbit and followed by other fantasy and Science Fiction, then I found comics. I became the ultimate Marvel Comics fan.I tried to buy every comic that Marvel put out, and succeed for a while. In the end I had a collection of over 6,000 comics. A few non Marvel, but not many. I dreamt of writing comics and created a whole bunch of Super Heroes, I still remember them all. I tried to find out how to write comics, but for a high school kid in Thompson Road, Speers Point (look it up) it was just to hard. So I kept making story's in my head.

The big problem was that I was just so bad a spelling and writing in general. I tried to over come this by asking my mum to buy a Commodore 64 for me while holidaying in Hong Kong. Instead, she got some computer that was really popular in Hong Kong but, not here. I tried to do stuff on it, but it didn't work out. I kept making stories in my head.

My choice to leave my job and go to Theological College forced me to learn how to write. I had to write a lot of essay, some up to 5,000 words, and I had to write the quickly. Looking back now, I realize just how much I learnt about writing through those years. A lot of my essays read like stories.

After College I got involved in children's Ministry. When you work with children you tell a lot of stories. Twenty five years later, I decide to have a go at being a Pastor of a church. My stories are a lot like stories, which everyone liked. However, the other parts of being a Pastor didn't work out to well for me. I also started making up bed time stories for my daughter.

I never forgot my desire to write, but it really come back to me just over three years ago. I had all the things I needed. Time, my job was only part time, desire and a computer that had decant spell check. Although it doesn't always work.

I started writing. I had my first story punished in an anthology in time for my mum to see it before she died. I'm still writing, but not much in the last six months.

My best guess is that it was 40 years ago sometime in 2015 that the man gave me a work book to write my first story.

This, in brief, is how I came to be here.

Sunday, 16 November 2014

Book Review: Obsidian (Alex Caine #2) By Alan Baxter


This is another great read from Alan Baxter!

Book two picks up the story of Alex Caine and Silhouette not very long after book one. However, Alex is already feeling like a bit of a loose end needed direction. Along comes Armour! International secret society protecting the world from evil magic. I found myself wondering where these people were in book one. An explanation was given, but I found it a bit cliché. That was okay, the start of the first book was also a bit cliché and it turned out great.

A new character is also quickly introduced, Claude Darvill, son of the main villain in book one. His introduction, in hindsight, is also a bit cliché, but I didn’t notice while reading the book.

Also introduced early are a trio of would-be wizards seeking a mysterious magic treasure. As they hunt for the treasure, Alex (with friends) hunts them and Claude hunts Alex. They all come together and Alex’s special gem (stuck in his chest from book one.) triggers a trap that sends them all to Obsidian.

Obsidian is an interesting place and is well created. The rest of the story basically follows Alex, and friends, attempts to find a way out. This involves lots of all round action and drama; Another great roller coaster ride.

One slight disappointment, for me, was that I work out how it was going to end well before the end. This took a little bit of shin off the story, because I found it predicable, but I still enjoyed the read.

One other issue, for me, is the use of foul language. I get that Alex and friends are tough and talk tough. What I don’t get is an immortal creature that has been trapped in a pocket universe for some thousands of years also talking and swearing like someone from a pub in Kings Cross. It just frustrates me.

If you loved book one, you will like book two. However, book three is the best of all, and that will be my next review.

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Monday, 10 November 2014

Writing Journal: Getting Back Up


As the end of 2014 comes closer, I look back over my writing journey for the year and see one success, finishing the first draft of 'Loney Susan', my first novel.

Compared to that I see a lot of failures, to many to count. The most recent being my complete failure to keep my commitment to write every day in October. I lasted about a week and a bit. To make the most of it, I tried getting up at 4am to write for an hour before my usual 5am start. I was completely exhausted after just two days and that was it. The one positive was the writing day I had on the long weekend.

I really loved the writing day, it work. I wrote more than 2000 words and really enjoyed it. It got me thinking about how I write best. It is in clearly set aside blocks. I almost always get a good bit of writing done when I do the one hour Writing Race on Facebook on Wednesday night. Sadly, I often have other commitments and can't do it.

Now that I'm picking myself up again from another failure, what to do? Look for regular blocks of time to write. It has to be something concrete, not just I'll write for the next hour. (Although, maybe I should try that.) things like the Writing Race and having a writing day seem to be what works. I just need to find more of them.

On another writing topic, I currently have three stories out there hoping to be accepted. I'm really hoping for two out of three at least.

On more writing, I have two short stories and a novella to finish.

On Lonely Susan, I want to start draft number two.

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Monday, 6 October 2014

Writing Journal: A writing day.


I took the whole day out just toe write today. It's the first time I've ever done it.

It wasn't perfect, but it was fairly good. I did it at home, in the office, with the family home. So there were some interruptions. I could have gone out, but it would have meant writing on my little net book and it's not fun to write on and I would have needed somewhere I could plug it in for it to last the whole day.

I started the day with the big ambition to write a whole short story of about 6 - 7 thousand words long. I managed to write just over 2000 words. Looking back, I think it was a fairly good effort.

The best part is that I really feel that I've broken my writing drought. I really want to finish the story so I am planning to get up an hour early each morning to write.

This means getting up at 4am!

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Monday, 29 September 2014

Writing Journal: Writetober


I've had another good rejection. Although it took a long time, over three months, to come through. It one of my flash pieces sent to one of the daily fiction sites. It was good rejection because there was heaps of feedback. Paragraph long bit of feedback from three people who read it. They even had the names of the reviewers (So, I've found their addresses and hired the assassin..no...that is wrong...must not do.) they had something good to say about the story, but all found different reasons to fault it. I'm still processing the information.

In the mean time I have to get back to some writing.

So, here comes Writetober!

(I don't know if I made Writetober up or heard it somewhere?)

During the month of October I am going to do as much writing/editing as I can and tweet about it every day. I have set goals, which I'm not going to tell, that I will be aiming for. However, the main aim is just to do a real lot of writing type stuff.

My tweets will be with #writetober if you want to follow my progress for the month. I hope you do.



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Monday, 8 September 2014

Monday Writing journal: New House. New Start?


I've just move house. It's the ninth place we've lived in since I married Jane, my wife (of course).

I'm hoping that it will break my writing drought. Since finishing my first draft of Lonely Susan I've fiddle, procrastinated, set goals, missed goals and generally wondered if I've got writers block or that I'm just plain lazy.

So, will house number nine be the place?

For some reason I'm reminded of Revolution 9 by the Beatles.

So, I'm making a new start in the new house. I expect I'll still procrastinate, fiddle, fuss & a lot of other stuff, just as long as I write!

I'll let you know.



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Sunday, 31 August 2014

Book Review: Bound (Alex Cain #1) By Alan Baxter


I kind of know Alan Baxter. We’ve met at conferences and chatted over the internet. I went to the book launch for Bound in Sydney, bought a copy and had it signed by Alan. I then put that in a box and down loaded a free kindle version and read it.

Before anything else, I have to say the Bound is a great read.

I came to the book with a little trepidation. Because I know Alan a little I know the type of stuff he writes. I thought I’d read some of his work before, but I cannot remember what. I’m not a fan of horror and Dark Fantasy has to be really good for me to get into it, so Alan is not quite my normal style of author. However, the little I know of Alan I like and a lot of people I know say he’s a great writer. I agree with them

Bound is a tight, fast paced, actioned packed story. A, ‘I cannot put this down’, read.

Alex Cain is an illegal kick boxing fighter who can see what his opponents intends. This gives him the edge to win almost all his fights. It also gets him in the bad books with a local crime boss because he won’t throw fights. To get away from the crime boss, Alex accepts a weird offer for a trip to England from a, stereo typical, old man with magical powers.

Alex is the type who does not believe in magic, but he soon has no choice. He quickly learns that he has a real gift for magic. This gift finds him bound to an ancient evil book that wants to use him for extreme violence and then kill him. He needs to find a way to get unbound. The only person he can turn to for help is a beautiful blond girl who is only half human and eats people. Discovering magic is real is not a fairy tale for Alex.

I really loved this book. It’s the first of three and I’ve already finished the second (review coming soon) and have the third on pre-order with Amazon. It’s has a story that sucks you in and keeps you reading. It has great main characters and brilliant villains. Everything you want in a good story.

It’s not perfect. Some of the minor characters at the start are a bit cliché, but they don’t hang around for long. Also, Alan enjoys the more colourful side of the English language and so do his characters. There is a lot of graphic violence, which I didn’t mind too much but some might. There is also a lot of sex, although it is not described in detail which I was glad about. (Am I strange to not mind graphic violence, but cringe at the hint of graphic sex?) Lastly, I find the colourful language completely unnecessary. If it wasn’t there I won’t miss it and I don’t believe it adds anything to gritty nature of the story. It’s just my view.

If you’re into fast stories with a lot of action and great characters, then give Bound a go. I loved it.

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Saturday, 16 August 2014

Book Review: Backworlds book 3: Boomtown Craze By M Pax


http://mpaxauthor.com/mpaxworks-books-and-stories/the-backworlds-series/boomtown-craze/
The adventure of Craze and his crew continue in Boomtown Craze, the 3rd book in the Backworlds series.

Book 3 brings a lot of new stuff to the series. New, and very interesting, characters, new worlds and a whole lot of new problems Craze. It also gives the reader multiple POV’s for the first time. In books 1 & 2 everything was told from Craze’s POV, but this completely changed in book three, and it’s a good thing. It’s good because the story expands beyond just Craze and other members of the cast get to go on their own adventures (although they might not see them as adventures) and the reader gets to experience new worlds. It’s also good because we are given some insight into motivation and history of some of the incredible beings that inhabit this universe.

The story itself also expands with this new diversity. In this book it begins to look like a Space Opera. The first two books were good Sifi stories, but were narrow in that they centred on Craze’s journey. Book 3 continues his journey, but brings us much more. I’m really looking forward to seeing how the story grows.

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Monday, 4 August 2014

Writing Journal: A little story published


Hi,

I've just had another little story published. It's in the August addition of of the sifi flash fiction webzine AntipodeanSF. It is my third story published there.

The story, A matter Og Technique, features a character I created over 30 years ago. Back then I was making up characters for comic books, which was what I mostly read at that time. I still remember all of them.

The character, Og, is a giant demon/human half breed with super hard skin and incredible strength. His human mother was not a willing participant in his conception. He only has one goal in life, to find his demon father and kill him. Dad does not want to be found.

In case you missed the link earlier, you can read the story here. If you read the story please let me know what you think.

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Monday, 28 July 2014

Writing Journal: I haven't blogged because I haven't written


I think you have to actually write to be a writer?

I just haven't been writing, until tonight.

Some writing stuff has happened. I've done a tiny (very tiny) bit of editing on my novel, Lonely Susan. I also had three people offer to read it for me. One of those people have already gotten back to me with a very positive response and some useful feedback.

I've also submitted Radar Love to another publication. Right now I have two stories out there hoping to be free. My only other complete short story, Bounty, underwent a big rewrite recently, so I need it to be checked before trying to free it again.

What I most need to do is write! I have a short story called Ved which has been half written for months now. I'm going to do some writing on it every night until it's finished. I think it's the only way it will get finished.

If you liked (or disliked) this post please leave a comment. You could also like my page on Facebook, or follow me on Twitter.

Monday, 30 June 2014

Writing Journal: typos and misspellings!


I had another story nicely reject this week. It was to a good publication that sends back some of the feedback from their slush readers, which is always informative and helpful. (I think?)

There was feedback given from three readers and they were very similar in content. All had similar good things to say, basically that the story had a lot of potential that’s not quiet realised in some way, and all three liked the ending. The negative was also kind of the same, basically that it was not fleshed out enough.

However, one of the readers said that the story lacked polished and had typos and misspellings.


What!!!

Typos(!!!) and misspellings(!!!!!!!)

Inconceivable!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

This comment shocked me, to put it lightly. I don’t blame the reader; if he/she found typos and misspellings then that is what he/she found. It just that it was so deflating to read those words when I know how much I’d done to make sure that there was no typos and misspellings, but it seems that I didn’t try enough.

I actually thought that I had this story about right. Now I’m going to have to add having another look at this story on my to do list. See what I can do to give it more depth to the setting and characters. Find those typos and misspellings and kill them.

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Monday, 23 June 2014

Writing Journal: I'm slow.


Hi,

I’m still writing, but not at a good pace.

Here is the, kind of, progress report.

1. I have complete a major edit on my short story, 'Bounty', but by next Monday, 23rd and not 16th of June.

2. I now hope to finish writing my short story, 'Ved' by the end of June.

3. I still hope to finish writing my short story, 'Jacq' by the end of July.

4. I also still hope to finish a complete second draft of my novel, 'Lonely Susan' by the end of September.

I’ll keep trying to do regular Monday Journals! I’m also hoping to do some other blog stuff.

That’s all for now.

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Sunday, 15 June 2014

My Top Ten Obsession Songs



We’ve always been obsessed with best of type list, think Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. However, the advent of the internet, YouTube, Facebook, etc. It has been taken to incredible new heights (lows?). I know this because I’ve been court up in the obsession myself. Far too many hours watching top 10s on YouTube. In particular, top 10 song lists. As I watched all these lists (when I should have been writing) I thought of some that haven’t been covered, as far as I know.

So, here is my Top 10 Obsession Songs, specifically songs that reflect one person with an obsession over another person.

10 Something https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yo1tCCKOiX4 I’ll most like have a Beatle’s song in all my top 10 song list, if I do any more, simply because I love the Beatles. However, Something fits well here. Its expresses the obsession of new love, how when you first fall for someone they take over your life, it’s all you can think about. True, but often short lived, obsession.

9 Jessie’s girl http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u2T7wKdQsTo This song is grass is greener obsession. Showing an all-consuming desire for someone you cannot have. Rick Springfield looked like a typical pop singer, but he wasn’t. There was a real dark side to his music and Jessie’s Girl is a prime example. It almost tips over into stalker territory, but that goes to the next song.

8 Happy together https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ZEURntrQOg This is a genuine stalker song. I have visions of a wall covered with a girls face and lit candles everywhere when listening to this song by the Turtles.

7 All I want is you http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Et6epq5fslg The message of this U@ song is simple. You want all this other stuff, all I want is you. Pure obsession.

6 Don’t stand so close to me http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Zp3LPRzuXo The Police are obsession song specialist with any number of songs reflecting theme. There were two other of their songs I seriously considered for this list, but this one is really the only choice in the end. It embodies one of the most dark and tragic types for obsession. Forbidden fruit, earnestly desiring what you truly cannot/should not have.
  
5 Ain’t no sunshine http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tIdIqbv7SPo Bill Withers really misses this she. When she’s not there it’s all he can think about in this song, genuine obsession.

4 Nothing compares to you http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iUiTQvT0W_0 This one perfectly shows the obsessive power of love lost. Sinead O’Conner expresses it perfectly.

3 Unchained melody http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zrK5u5W8afc Every single word in this song by Righteous Brothers oozes obsession. This is unconditional love taken to the extreme.  And it is beautiful.

2 Total control http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yirPs_X8uRM The main line of this Motels song says it all, ‘I’ll sell my sole for total control over you.’ It would be the ultimate obsession song but for the next one.

1 Pissing in the river http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XhDJZm_HyXY Patty Smith writes poetry to music. A really special kind of poetry, poetry I actually like! The way she combines words and music is just incredible in its raw intensity. In Pissing in the River she gives the ultimate voice to obsession. While Martha is will to sell her soul for the object of her desires, Patty lets it everything has pure out leaving herself completely empty. I’d quote some lyrics, but what you need to do is follow the link and read them as you listen to the song.

There were a lot of songs that could have gone on this list, I just kept thinking of more all the time. So below is a list of some that I considered, but didn’t make the top 10.

Please let me know if there is any songs that you think I should have included.

Every little thing she does is magic http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aENX1Sf3fgQ
The first time ever I saw your face http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Id_UYLPSn6U

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Monday, 9 June 2014

Monday Writing Journal: Rebooting the Reboot


Hi,

My reboot hasn't really worked, so I'm starting again. I just didn't keep it up, I've only got myself to blame.

Anyway, I've got some goals. Here they are.

1. Complete a major edit on my short story, 'Bounty', by next Monday, 16th of June.

2. Finish writing my short story, 'Ved' by the 23rd of June.

3. Finish writing my short story, 'Jacq' by the end of July.

4. Finish a complete second draft of my novel, 'Lonely Susan' by the end of September.

I'm going to keep doing these Monday Journals and do a tweet whenever I've done something. Let's see how I go!

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Saturday, 31 May 2014

A Blank Page


When I started going through the first draft of my novel, ‘Lonely Susan’ I got stuck my protagonist’s first appearance. The first time your main character appears is fairly important (just to understate things) and I knew that Susan’s first showing just wasn’t good enough. However, I just couldn’t come up with anything better.

I sat at the computer for, what seemed like, hours with the section of the story before me, I would go to write something, then just stop not happy with what I was about to write. I tried leaving it for a week or so, but the result was just the same. I didn’t matter how hard I tried, I just could not edit what was there in front of me.

It’s just one paragraph, a few sentences, but I could not get anywhere with trying to change what I wrote. Then thought came to me, don’t try and change anything, just wright it all over again. So that is what I decided to do.

Starting with a blank page, I just wrote the little scene again from scratch.

Here is the original:
He gazed down at the most beautiful face he had ever seen. Instead of rotting bones, a young lady lay in the box as though dreaming. She had shoulder length red hair and wore a snuggly fitting jumpsuit. Rod could have stared forever at the vision that lay before him, had it not been for his father.

 Here is the new version:
Rod hesitated as he looked down, expecting a rotted corpse. Instead he gazed upon a smooth face of almost pure white skin belonging to a young woman what seemed to be peacefully asleep. Her closed eyes had long lashes, and thick red browse start against the light skin that surrounded them. Her nose was long and straight with a sprinkling of freckles, her mouth wide with pastel lips. She had thick red hair that was pulled back into a pony tail that was swathed over her right shoulder. Rod felt he could just stare at her face forever.

I think it worked!

Let me know what you think.

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Tuesday, 27 May 2014

Monday Writing Journal: disapointment


The reboot of my writing has been a disappointment so far. However, I only have myself to blame for it.

So, what did I actually do?

Wrote a couple of hundred words for my major procrastination short story 'Ved'. The whole story is in there (in my head), but it just doesn't want to come out. It's shy for some reason.

Started and wrote a couple of hundred words for a story titled 'Jacq'. This is the origin story the Demon Slayer, 'Jacq' who appeared in my story in 'In Fabula-divino' titled 'Crossroads'. I've had the story in my mind for a while, and have now been inspired to write it for the 'Hear Me Roar' Anthology over at Ticonderoga.

I've also submitted 'Radar Love' again.

Disappointing, this week I must do better.

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Monday, 19 May 2014

Monday Writing journal: Reboot.


Hi,
At the start of this year I determined to finish the first draft of my first novel. To do this I created a set of goals and a progress report system. Since successfully finishing that first draft I've done mostly nothing.

So, it's time for a reboot.

I'm going to take what I did with the novel and apply it to my writing in general. What this means is that I'm planning to do a weekly writing journal blog each Monday, and a daily tweet up date. I hope this works.

The main idea is to make me accountable to me through this process of reports. I'll make myself do something reportable to meet the obligation to making the reports. If others (anyone reading this) want to follow along, it's a bonus.

I was going to finish with some comment about if I fail, but I'm not going to because I'm not going to fail.

In the coming weeks my tweet reports will be outlining what writing I am planning to do. It will be #rickswriting.

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Friday, 25 April 2014

Book Review: Aurora: Pegasus

This is the second book in Amanda Bridgeman’s Aurora Series and picks up the story where book one, Aurora: Darwin, left off. Where Aurora: Darwin was good, Aurora: Pegasus is better, mostly.

Amanda has developed as a writer from book one to book two. From the beginning the story telling feels tighter and cleaner. She builds more depth into her established characters and introduces the new ones seamlessly. She builds great tension, writes good action scenes and has well written plot twists. The old antagonist returns with a new depth and greater agenda. The story’s main conflict is played out and resolved in such a way that leaves the reader both satisfied and wanting more.

Sadly, the book does not concluded well, unlike book one. In book one the aftermath of the main conflict between the crew of the Aurora and their enemies on the Darwin was well handled and the book maintained a good pace and tone right to the end. However, I found the last section of Pegasus a bit of a plod. It felt to me like it was just marking time or just padding out the book so it was a certain length. I kept wondering if something else was going to happen, but it didn’t.

Aurora: Pegasus is still a great book. I spent most of the book thinking this is better than the first, which I loved.

This is a series worth getting into. Book three, Aurora: Meriden, is due out on the 11 of September. I recommend that you buy and read books one and two to be ready for book three. I’m certain this series is only going to get better.

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Saturday, 12 April 2014

Positive Rejections


I've just received another short story submission rejection. So it's now two rejections and one acceptance out of the four submissions I've recently made. One out for three is not to bad and if it becomes two out of four (50% success) I'll be very happy.

Although I am getting a fairly large number of rejections, there is a positive spin to them. Most of my rejections this year have come with a please submit again comment of some kind.

Here are some examples of what I mean:

  • I appreciate your interest in our Magazine* and hope that you'll keep us in mind in the future.
  • We hope you continue to submit to our Magazine* in future and I wish you all the best with your publishing endeavours.
  • We encourage you to submit to our Magazine* again.
  • Thanks again for submitting to us, and we hope to hear from you in the future.
  • In any case I hope you'll consider subbing again because your story was head and shoulders above a lot of other submissions.
  • Please feel free to submit other work in the future.
I've been told, and believe, that editors/publishers usually mean it when they say please try again. So, the fact that I'm getting a lot of these must mean that I'm on the right track. All I've got to do now is right the stories so I can submit them.

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*I've taken out the name of the magazine.

Wednesday, 2 April 2014

One out of Two with Two too go!


I recently made the unprecedented, for me, move of submitting four short stories (two are really flash fiction) at once to different markets. I usually only able to handle doing one at a time.

I've heard back from two already and have one acceptance and one rejection.

The acceptance is my flash story, 'A Matter Og Technique'. I wrote this story back in 2012 and entered it in the short story contest at the Sydney FreeCon. I got seventh place. Anyway, I've been wanting to see it in print somewhere else for a while. It will now be appearing in issue 194 of the Webzine AntipodeanSF in August.

The rejection was of the first short story in ever wrote, and it is it's seventh rejection. The publication that rejected it this time was kind enough to send me the feedback comments from it's readers. Both really liked the start, thought the middle was weak and, therefore, felt the ending didn't work. Which is similar to comments I've received from other rejections.

It's a 'therefore' because I'm fairly sure that the middle is the problem. So, I'm going to rip it's guts out and put in a new one and see what happens.

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Friday, 28 March 2014

Lonely Susan First Draft Finished!


Wow!

I've done it. Wrote the wonderful words 'THE END' on Wednesday 26 of March 2014. I've written a novel. Not a long novel, just over 50000 words, but a novel.

Here are the final numbers:

Novel Length: 50364
Words written in last eighty days: 33718
Average words per day during the eighty days: 415

So, I feel that my commitment to write every day, do daily tweets and weekly blogs, and kept myself publicly accountable has paid off.

I'm very Happy. :)

So, where to now?

My plan is to give it a rest for a few weeks and write some other stuff; some short stories I have in mind. Then I'm going to go through the book chapter by chapter and work on anything I think needs fixing. I'm mainly going to look at the dialogue and descriptions, because I think that is where I'm weakest.

After that I might see if I can get some professional editing, and get feed back from some people, family friends,other writers, etc.

If I'm happy after that, it's submit time.

I'm fairly sure things will not go to plan, but if you aim for nothing that is what you get.

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Monday, 24 March 2014

Target April fool Week Eleven Report


#targetalprilfool #writing
I did not finish this week as I thought I would, I’m using all my best procrastination skills to stop myself from finishing. (I just spelt procrastination right in one go. Wow!) However, unless I manage to stop writing all together, I cannot help but finish this week.

Here are the numbers:
Start of week Eleven, 17/3/14, 47049words
Finish of week Eleven, 23/3/14, 49086 words
Total words for the week 2037

The end goal remains, that by 1st April I have finished first draft of my first novel, Lonely Susan.
Can I do this? Yes I can, I’m almost there.

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Sunday, 23 March 2014

Some Stats on My Short Story Writing


In an attempt to put of finishing 'Lonely Susan' I've decided that I needed to update my submissions records for my short stories, including flash fiction.

 From this I waisted some more time coming up with a few stats. Here they are:

  • Eight stories written
  • Fifteen rejections
  • Most rejections for one story, six
  • Three stories published
  • one story paid
  • Two contest results, 7th place both times
  • Contests entered, six
  • Decisions currently pending on submissions, four
I'm not sure how I feel about these stats. There is one sense that I'm not doing to bad as a beginning writer, there is some success there. But I look at the numbers and think that in two or so years I should have done more. But maybe not.

I like the fact that I have four stories out there being considered. This is the most I've had at any one time as I usually struggle to submit more than one story at a time.

If anyone has any thoughts on these stats, please leave a comment, I would love to know.

Thursday, 20 March 2014

The story of the Backworlds continues, and the story of Earth begins.




Worlds on Edge
by M. Pax
Fifth book in the Backworlds series


War is coming. A horde of merciless aliens poise just beyond the Edge. In a matter of weeks they will devour the worlds.
Racing ahead of the apocalypse, Craze returns to the Backworlds to warn them and plan a defense. Only he can’t go home. Banned from Pardeep Station, he must wage a more urgent battle. His moon is under siege, and his friends are dying.
Bad things come in threes, and the galaxy is no exception. An old enemy returns, attacking moons and defenseless globes, leaving a wake of destruction. Worse than that, they threaten to join forces with the alien horde.
Defeat seems inevitable. Craze may not be able to stop it. Yet home is worth the fight.





Fantasy, science fiction, and the weird beckons to M. Pax, and she blames Oregon for that, a source of endless inspiration. She docents at Pine Mountain Observatory in the summers, teaching the public about the stars and the galaxy. A Bachelors of Science in Journalism, she had former lives in marketing and television before settling down to write. Want to know more? mpaxauthor.com

Monday, 17 March 2014

Target April fool Week Ten Report


#targetalprilfool #writing
Week ten saw me miss a day of writing for the first time since I started target April Fool. Sad, but I was (mostly) in bed for 24 hours with a really bad stomach bug. So I also fell well short of my 3000 word goal.

Here are the numbers:
Start of week Ten, 3/3/14, 45082 words
Finish of week Ten, 9/3/14, 47049 words
Total words for the week 1967

This outcome is okay, I wrote for 67 days in a row; which is very good actually.

I’m now very near the end. I fully expect to finish the first draft this coming week. I look forward to saying, ‘It is finished’, next week.

The end goal remains, that by 1st April I have finished first draft of my first novel, Lonely Susan.
Can I do this? Yes I can, I’m almost there.

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Sunday, 16 March 2014

Review: Stopover at the Backworld’s Edge


A Nice Little Stay.

Having read and enjoyed the first book in M Pax’s Backworlds series, (my review can be found here) I was looking forward to book two, Stopover at the Backworld’s Edge. I also enjoyed book two, but it wasn’t what I was expecting.

Book one introduced Craze, a genetically altered human especially designed to survive on certain types of worlds. He lives in a part of the galaxy that has many different genetically altered people called the Backworld’s. There was once a war with the Foreworlds, but little is learn about them. In book one Craze flies from world to world having all kinds of misadventures, I was expecting the same in book two.

However, it was not to be. Instead, Craze has settle on a moon called Pardeep. Here he has set up a bar at it’s space dock and dreams of making a fortune as revenge against his father who betrayed him in book one. All Craze’s friends have found a roll on the moon (except one, read the books and find out why.) and some new characters are introduced.

The action starts with a foreworld’s space ship lands with a mysterious passenger and doesn’t stop for the whole book. All the action in this book takes place on Pardeep, but there is plenty of it. Amongst the action we learn more about the universe that M Pax is creating.

P Max is still setting up her universe for the long running series ( Book five is now out.), but she does a fine job of giving you a good action story whiles doing so. I’m a little behind in the series, I’m reading book three right now, but I’m committed to reading it through the the end. Whenever that is.

The Backworlds Series is one worth exploring.

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Monday, 10 March 2014

Target April fool Week Nine Report


#targetalprilfool #writing

I did not make 3000 words in week nine, but it’s not surprising as I was away for three days on a camp. What is surprising is that I still managed to write something each day. I’ve written nine weeks straight without missing a day. For me, that is an amazing achievement.

Here are the numbers:
Start of week Nine, 3/3/14, 42830 words
Finish of week Nine, 9/3/14, 45082 words
Total words for the week 2252

I’m very happy with this result, I’m I will be out to pass 3000 words again this week.

The end goal remains, that by 1st April I have finished first draft of my first novel, Lonely Susan.
Can I do this? I don’t know, but I’m going to try really hard.

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