Latest Event Updates

How I’m writing more words per writing session (and general updates).

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I’ve had a very productive last two days. I’ve written about 5,000 words each day, and now I think I’m really hitting the good part of book 4 (not that the other parts aren’t good, of course). There have been doubts about my writing plans, but I’m pushing through them for the moment.
It’s strange. Usually, the middle of the book is tough to write, but I’m actually having a lot of fun with it.
I’ve also adopted a new method. Recently, I’ve been more of a “seat of my pants” kind of writer. However, I read some great writing advice from Rachel Aaron. She was able to write more by outlining a scene shortly before writing it.
I always feel stifled by a rigid outline, but this method has worked wonders for me over the last two days. I usually think about my whole chapter in a big picture sense. Then the actual writing is filling in the details and possibly throwing in a few things I didn’t think of while outlining the chapter. This approach gives me both structure and flexibility, and I hope it continues to work so successfully. With the other demands on my time, I will take anything that can make my writing time more productive.

Finished an Editing Pass (and other updates)

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Sorry haven’t updated recently. Things have been a bit up and down for me on the writing front (and in my life in general). When I sink into a depressive mood, I tend to devalue my writing and think that I’ll never find any success in self-publishing.

Today, the mood I’ve been in recently seems to have lifted a bit. I was able to finish an editing pass of Empire of Chains. It isn’t quite ready yet, but it keeps getting closer.

Once again, I’m feeling good about the book. I think my next editing pass will focus on adding in necessary description and cutting down on some excess internal thoughts, especially during fast-paced scenes.

I’m excited to see how people react to Empire of Chains. I’m also excited that I’ve written first drafts of the next two books. At the moment, there’s still a lot going on in life. I’m not always able to get words written every day, but editing is often easier because there are already words to work with.

That being said, I do plan on getting back to writing Book 4 soon. I hit a block in the last couple of weeks, but I’m still excited about concluding the series.

After that, I have my Sunweaver series and God War series to work on. The first book of Sunweaver is in about the same shape as Empire of Chains (that is, it’s almost ready). The first book of the God War series doesn’t have a definite title yet, and it still needs more editing work before it will be ready. I anticipate both of those series being trilogies, though that could be subject to change.

I also have quite a few more books waiting to be written. Not sure what I’ll get working on next.

More Restructuring

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I have now finished restructuring Book 3. I still think dividing these books into parts is the best decision I’ve made. It allows me to focus more narrowly on two to three POV characters at once rather than trying to jump between too many characters. That works for some writers, but it’s just not my style.

The Restructuring is Going Well

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I’m happy to say that my planned restructuring has worked really well so far in Book 2. Instead of having the reader bouncing between a ton of stories at once, I’ve divided the book into parts that focus on fewer stories at once. I’ll need to do a little more smoothing out to make it work, but I no longer feel like these books are a mess.

I was probably being my own toughest critic, as usual.

Yesterday’s update may have been premature.

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I may have been premature yesterday in stating that I’m putting Empire of Chains aside for the moment. It has some problems, especially in the later books, but I might be able to fix these problems through editing. I still feel the first book is the strongest, but only for the moment. I think I can make the others just as strong. It will simply take more work than usual during the revision process.

The more I think about it, the more I realize this is the story I want to tell. It just has some rough spots. And when I get into a bad depressive phase, all I can see are those rough spots. Thankfully, that mood has lifted, and now I’m looking at it more objectively.

An Update: Putting Empire of Chains on Hold.

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So I have some news that may be both good and bad. After some more consideration, as well as input from a trusted reader, I’ve determined that it is not yet time to go through with plans of publishing Empire of Chains (and its sequels). Quite simply, it is not the story I would like it to be.

In order to make the necessary corrections, I pretty much have to start all over. I don’t know when I’ll write it because I need time to change the things that need changing.

In the meantime, I do have two other series I feel much better about. I will likely turn my attention to those series. One of them, Sunweaver, still has the first book under consideration in the Angry Robot Open Door. Most of the entries have been read at this point, but I’m still waiting on a response.

I also have A Song of War, the first book of my God War series. It’s more of a gunpowder fantasy. I haven’t done much editing on it, but I have a pretty clean first draft to work with.

I may also get working on some other projects.

In a way, this is good news. When I get Empire of Chains out there (and the title may still be subject to change), it will be a much stronger book and more in line with the writer I’ve become rather than the writer I was when I first started writing it at fifteen.

Each iteration has been an improvement, and I’m hopeful that one last try will give me the series I’ve envisioned. Don’t get me wrong. There are some aspects of what I have that I think are very good, but it also has its fair share of issues, and they’re not issues I can correct without completely reworking the story.

So I don’t know when exactly I’ll begin publishing. There’s still a part of me holding out hope for trade publishing. For anyone who’s interested, I can send you copies of some of my books if you’d like to read them and provide feedback.

This wasn’t an easy decision to come to, but these concerns have been in my mind for a while now. The fact that I can’t get rid of them shows that they are valid concerns. I want my readers to have the best product I can provide, and what I have right now does not fit that description.

Progress Update

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I’m making steady progress on book 4 of Empire of Chains. After 4,000 words today, I have now written nearly 24,000 words in the last 9 days. Surprisingly, this pace feels comfortable for me. I aim for 2,000 a day, and anything over that is an extra bonus.

I’ve had my doubts as I go through this self-publishing process. This is actually the third time I’ve decided to go through it. I backed out the first two times, but I’m determined to see things through this time. That doesn’t mean it isn’t scary. It is probably the most terrifying thing I’ve ever done in terms of life choices.

Well, deciding to go back for a second round of college might compete there. But now I’m feeling really good about that decision.

I’m excited to finish this series. These characters and this story are originally from the first novel I ever wrote. By now, they feel like old friends. I completed the series once before, but I did not have the experience as a writer to do it justice. Now it has become a much stronger story, and I’m excited for people to read it.