All Good Things Come to an End
Uncategorized / January 26, 2018

I will be ceasing publication. It’s time to return to the Land of Figments and stop trying to be a Real Writer. My Figments need me; the Bobian is growing up; and Mr. Boogerschniggle really has better things to do than get involved in regurgitated Shakespearean plots. Thank you, if you’ve been a reader of mine. I’ll still be writing, but I won’t be trying to publish for the public any longer. I appreciate everyone who has ever read one of my books or supported me. Now, I have a train to catch before it gets derailed. Farewell, Z7

Where’s Zanzibar?
News / December 22, 2017

So, where have I been? I spent a couple of months in Figment-land. Apparently there was a big dispute about whether adjectives are good or bad in literature. Little Bo Peep and her crew were in favor; those with shorter names were often not in favor. It was a mess. After the Figments, I went to Cawdor High, but it was on something called “summer break”. No one there. I did hear a rumor that Riley and Mr. Boogerschniggle had moved on to college, so I’ll be visiting them there next. Okay, truth be told, I experienced something called a concussion, which is where you take your brain, blend it well, and serve it in a margarita glass with salt. (Failing that, you get something called a CT-scan and MRI and then spend a lot of time saying “ouch”.) It’s hard to write with a concussion, so I had to take a little break. But I’m back on track and should be publishing my first book (in over a year) in February. Look for Calling All Heroes on February 12th. Starting in January, I’m going to put up either a sneak peek or a short story every week. That will…

NaNoWriMo: Day 18 (120,003)
NaNoWriMo / November 18, 2016

I have had a Eureka! moment. It was not, unfortunately, a good eureka moments, but it was still valuable. I’m a good writer. I’m not remotely humble about it. I mean, I have the moments of self-doubt and imposter syndrome, but I also read a lot. My writing is better than a lot of stuff out there and, in spite of the fact that I often use other stories as a jump-start to my writing, it’s more original. (As I said, I’m not very humble about it.) I’m a very good editor. I can even, given enough time, find the issues in my own work (although I prefer to have someone else do it). When it comes to straight line edits, my books are cleaner than a lot of professionally published works. I do okay in cover creation. Yeah, I’d like to let someone else do the covers, but that costs money I don’t have, thanks to some debts with the Figments Mafia Mob Bosses. So I do my own. One day I’ll fix that, should my readers ever start actually buying my books. What I don’t do well, though, is marketing. Guess what a successful self-publishing author needs to be…

NaNoWriMo: Day 16 (107,002) Owww!
NaNoWriMo / November 16, 2016

Last night at 11:00 pm, I made the crazy decision to try (again) for a 50k day. It may not have been the wisest choice, but I was starting a new novel (Cheyna and the Doorway to Everland) and the words were flowing and I don’t have too much to do today. A little food shopping. Some exercise. A shower if I want to persist in this thing called Real Life without being shunned. I’ve heard that those who manage a 50k day do without those things. And sleep. They do without sleep and I slept almost five hours. I feel so *yawn* rested. So I’m off. No long talk today. I’m only 7k in and I’m already feeling it, so I need every minute. You should be writing, too, right? BTW, I shut down Facebook. Honestly, you can’t trust me around politics. I see an inconsistency, I jump in, and sanity is over. So, bye-bye Facebook. Back to the words.

NaNoWriMo: Day 15 (100k and some change; book 2)
NaNoWriMo / November 15, 2016

Sorry for missing yesterday. After a huge day on Sunday, I didn’t feel like blogging. Or writing. Or moving. I’ve hit the 100k mark (double-NaNo) and finished up book 2, The Word Runner. I’ve also realized The Word Runner went horribly wrong (I didn’t write it with any sort of an outline, just a vague concept) and I’ll have to rewrite the entire thing from chapter two onward. Ah well. Live and learn. Today I will start book 3, Cheyna and the Doorway to Everland. I’m also prepping for Orycon in Portland, OR on Friday and gearing up to do a big attempt at marketing The Wicked Witch of Whatever. Yes. I am talking about marketing. But not until December. So, it’s halfway to the end of NaNo and I’ve only finished two books. Maybe six was asking too much of this non-Figment body– and that’s okay. I’ll keep writing through December 15th to get as far as I can on first drafts. Theoretically, I should be able to do all six by then. It doesn’t take into account my steadily growing hours at the day job (retail-associated), but I can work around that. I think. So, onward and upward….

NaNoWriMo: Day 13 (81,953)
NaNoWriMo / November 13, 2016

I finally got my mojo back (or rested up enough) to get some serious wordage in yesterday. It didn’t start off the best, though. First, I went to an in-person write-in because I’m trying to be social for this event and I no longer belong to a certain group that has provided all my social interaction without leaving the house. Also, the in-person event had pastries. But mostly social, really. When I got there and set up all the way, I discovered I was missing all 1k words from Friday. Now it was only 1k, but it was a hard 1k. I fought for that 1k. I bled (just a little) for that 1k. I searched all three backup locations. No 1k. Then I had a thought: what if it was still on the home computer under autosave? So I left the write-in, took a Pokémon Go detour, and then checked the home computer. Huzzah! All the words were there! And I had pastry, which was bonus. Then, finally, I got to writing, mixing it up with some offline stuff and quick bursts of exercise to combat the fluffy writer syndrome. I’m still not at epic levels, but I’m back…

NaNoWriMo: Day 12 (75,091)
NaNoWriMo / November 12, 2016

I don’t feel like writing today. Actually, I don’t feel like being today. People on social media have caused so much furor that I’ve stopped reading or posting anything that doesn’t post there automatically. I’ve considered giving up my attempt at Real Person status. Then I considered trying to be a Real Person somewhere else. Then I just considered no longer being. Yeah, that’s where all you angry, hateful people are pushing me, and I suppose I’m not even considered one of the endangered groups. So, no social media. I won’t be replying. I’m a sensitive soul and the majority of those posting are either jerks or chicken littles. The sky is not falling. The presidency hasn’t even changed hands yet. But I see people talking about moving, about seceding, about suicide, about revolution, and about ignoring how the Constitution is set up because it didn’t suit their definition of who should win. The moderate people have just gone away entirely so we don’t get branded with the very large irons that are being handed out. And that’s as much politics as I’m going to go into– or follow– for some time. Since I’m a Figment, maybe I’ll just make…

NaNoWriMo: Day 10 (74,088)
NaNoWriMo / November 11, 2016

I slowed way down yesterday. Way down. Like, I hit the accelerator and was going 60, then I slammed on the brakes at the first light. At least I was wearing my seat belt. Yesterday was day 10, 1/3 of the way into the NaNoWriMo challenge. For those of you who are despairing that you still have 2/3’s of the challenge left to go, let me comfort you with knowledge of my distress: I am not done with high word counts until all six books have a first draft. I’m still on the second book. And today I start my newest day job, which will involve 11 hours of being on my feet with no access to a computer anywhere. Am I still gonna write? Of course. I’m taking the laptop and I’ll write during lunch. I’m going to write now, at 3:30 am, before I get in the car for my commute. Because, for me, it’s not about winning NaNoWriMo. I’ve done that. It’s about meeting my personal goals. So before you go another third through NaNoMonth, figure out what your personal goals are. Do you want the 50k win? More? Less? Maybe you just want to be sure…

NaNoWriMo: Day 10 (71,772)
NaNoWriMo / November 10, 2016

Why, oh why, did I decide to be Real when I did this year’s NaNo? My eyes hurt. My wrists/ hands/ fingers hurt. I have a niggling pain in my left elbow.  Yesterday I decided I was getting too fluffy, so I started amping up my exercise, so everything else hurts, too. This means you’re getting a short blog post today. If I added all my blog posts to my word count, I’d have another 5k. I could really use that additional 5k right now. So, here is what I have to say to inspire you: I wish I could say something classy and inspirational, but that just wouldn’t be [my] style. Pain heals. Chicks dig scars. Glory… lasts forever. – Shane Falco (aka Keanu Reeves), The Replacements I have no idea why I should care that baby birds like scars– and I don’t plan to get any while I’m writing. But the discomfort will pass. The tired will pass. When I’m finished, I will have glorious (and vomitous) words to edit. Words– and glory– last forever. So go out there today and make a little bit of forever. But scars are kind of gross, really, so make forever without…

NaNoWriMo: Day 9 (63,782 words)- BackUp Your Work!
NaNoWriMo / November 9, 2016

A Cautionary Poem We backup to our hard drive; We backup to our mail. We backup without thinking; We backup without fail. We backup to a DropBox Or similar device; We backup to a flash drive; We even backup twice. We send it to our family; We send it to our friends. They send restraining orders And then the fun begins. Unless you like retyping A thousand words or more Backup your words this instant I beg, beseech, implore. Backup when you’re done writing; Backup the in-between. Backup before web browsing; Backup your words, your dreams. If you forget to backup (And everybody does) Then post this short reminder Wherever you have cause. And now I’m off to backup My own words places three, And life will be less stressful If you backup like me. My computer had major issues yesterday. Major, won’t boot, issues. Fortunately, I had saved all my work for the day on a flash drive, so I wasn’t worried about losing my progress. Unfortunately, it limited how much I wrote for the day. Off to make up for the loss. Go back up your work, then get writing.