Weekend Stuff


Well, I had an interesting and restful weekend. Of course, I spent more of it than I’d like on the potty being a touch ill, but I feel much better today, thanks for asking.

On top of that yummy goodness, I also got my two short story collections (which I incorrectly referenced as anthologies in prior posts and stuff — very embarrassing) published up on the KoboBooks.com site. So, if your eReader requires an .epub format (although I believe the Kindle will consume/convert them to its native format), you can get my stuff there.

Right now, I’m just testing the site to see what sort of results I get from it. If there’s some interest, I’ll continue to publish there and see about making some stuff free (which is easy to do on places like Smashwords, but SW is a PITA to publish to, frankly, and their “meat grinder” conversion software SUX), which will also make it free on Amazon. But… you know. I don’t hold out a lot of hope. J. A. Konrath or Amanda Hocking I’m not. (Especially Amanda Hocking. At least I have all the right plumbing to be J. A. Konrath.)

Meanwhile, I have a busy day of reporting ahead of me at work, so I’m sending this post as an email to disguise it. (Aren’t I all Jason Bourne-y and stuff?) Covert posting; it’s kinda fun.

My thoughtful and extremely wonderful wife got me a set of index cards, so I can try my new outlining method. It’s gonna be tricky, because I’ve never — not even in grade- or high-school — used index cards for notes. It’s something new to me, and something I’ll have to get used to. Technology has done most of those things for me, but I want to use this successfully because of how it works, and the artifacts it leaves behind.

Think about it: I put the sequence objective on one side of the card. I put the events (likely four of them) on the back. I place them on a table or the floor with the sequence objectives up. I can shuffle and re-shuffle the sequences all over the place, building tension, getting things in the order I’d like, and then when I’m settled, the events I need for that sequence have already been migrated with it.

Truth be told, I won’t abandon Scrivener’s card-like outline process for this. I will, however, do this before migrating into Scrivener, since it leaves me the hard copies to work with in the future. Having been a victim of many computer crashes, and loss of revisions, I’m happy to have something hard-copy I can use to recreate an outline or entire book if I’d like.

Strong stories are like strong buildings. They don’t just happen. They’re constructed, each piece building atop the last to form a cohesive whole. Without the foundational structure and anchoring the rest of the story isn’t strong, and will topple on itself. Some writers get their structure right through revisions and repeated drafting. Some get it through plotting and planning and outlining. Some never do get it, and never know why. But making sure each sequence is made up of meaningful events, each linking back to the main story’s spine, isn’t accidental. Using a visual way to do this is something I can definitely get behind.

I’m looking forward to blazing a new trail in my writing method with these tools in hand, when I can get the handle on them. I think it can only serve to enhance what I’m doing.

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