I’m writing!

Started a new chapter in Burning Muses, this time about the muse, Terpsichore.  It’s been percolating for a while but tonight I managed to get it together in a file. I’m sitting on it overnight before tweaking it and sending it off for beta.

Maybe this will jump start my writing again. I hope so; it’s been a long, dry patch with no real inspiration.

Just to let you know, this is now a mirror site to some degree. I’m moving my fanfiction and some original stories to a WordPress.org build. My coding, which consisted of tables within tables within tables, isn’t working as well, so I’m replacing it with this. I’ll be doing most of my blogging about writing over there. (Family stuff will move to my family blog on WordPress.com.) It’s my goal to make that my author’s platform. New chapters or stories will be posted there first, even before fanfiction.net or AO3.

Here’s the site: As My Muse Moves. Come check it out!

NaNoWriMo 2013

Yes, it’s that time of year again.

Yes, I am an ML again. My co-ML had surgery just before the month began, so I’m the one juggling a lot of the meat-space stuff. We had a great turn out for our first write-in and hopefully I’ll have notice of the meeting place for our second one as our first choice for weeknights fell through.

I’m working on finishing my novel from the July Camp session. Using Scrivener, too, which is very helpful. I wish, however, it would give me a word count on a highlighted section.

One of the artisans has made me a truly impressive cover, and another is doing right by my female dwarf character in a computer render.

I’m going to try to put up a writing prompt every few days throughout the month in hopes of stimulating my writing. You all can join in if you like. I’ll try to make them as broad as possible for use in many different genres.

Today’s prompt: TEA.

Warm fuzzies

I received an email today from a reader who lives in Australia. She wanted to thank me for writing The White Winds and for being an influence on her own writing. She said…

…although you had no idea you were doing it, even just reading your stuff taught me the importance of making sure all your facts are right, that you spelling and editing is good, and that it doesn’t matter how long it takes you writing something as long as you stick to it and you’re somewhat proud of it at the end.

Her letter gave me the warm fuzzies. I’ve not felt too confident recently and her letter just gave me a needed boost. She also made me realize I have to finish a few things on my fan fiction list as well as edit what I’ve finished before I put it up on my new site.

Just wanted to share. I’m formulating a reply.

Busy building

Yep. I am busy building a new website. My old archive is falling to bits, mostly because I have only a passing acquaintance with HTML and none whatsoever with CSS. It pains me, in a way, to do this.  I felt my original site had some rather interesting features; for example, quite a few people commented favorably on my Library page with its shelves and books. However, the guestbook script I downloaded to act as a reviews board was no longer supported (indeed, no longer exists!) and was buggier than an ant hill. It filled with spam–though the spam catcher was really good a quarantining it and deleting it. The whole site is built on tables within tables within tables. It’s just too unwieldy. So, I’m going for a WordPress build on my own domain. I need something that looks sleek and will function as my author’s site as well as my fan fiction archive.

So far, so good. There is some tweaking still to be done but I’m learning as I go. My daughter, at least, has more than a passing acquaintance with CSS. (She’ll tell you she’s no expert but she’s better than I am!) I have already exported this blog and imported it there; eventually I’ll be posting there exclusively, I think.

I also like the fact that WordPress.org had the WP Copy Protect plug in, as well as JetPack, which is used here. There is entirely too much plagiarism on the Web these days. I’ve seen people copypasting stories they don’t own from Fictionpress and selling them on Amazon.com. There’s the whole issue with the food bloggers who are having their recipes and photos snagged and used in like-farming sites all over Facebook. The issue is part of the reason I’ve been leery of posting my novel online anywhere. But with the Copy Protect, I can do that safely. (Plus, I can put it behind a password for extra security while it’s being betaread.)

I’ll put up a link when I’m ready.

Aside

Probably should have posted this yesterday, but … oh well, I’ll edit and put it up today!

First, I’m right on track for word count. Hallelujah! Wednesday, I felt generally run down, ill, and grumpy, to the extent that we ordered comfort food (pizza) instead of what I’d planned for dinner (hot dogs) and I didn’t write a word. I was a full day ahead on word count at that point, so taking the day off didn’t hurt a bit. I’ve been getting out of the house in the afternoon, which helps immensely with my writing productivity. Today, I’m going to haul butt out when the D&D starts later on. I may try to do this every day until the end of Camp. It’s good to not have the chaos of housecleaning, laundry, critters, et al weighing on me.

When this is finished, I want to put it somewhere that my friends can see it and comment as part of the betaing process, but where it would be private and not necessarily considered “first publish”. Fictionpress is absolutely out; I’ve been hanging out at  the fpwatchers group on livejournal and seeing how many stories are plagiarized from there, even published online for cash at Amazon. Besides, that would be considered a first publishing situation. I could put it on my own site and distribute private links to my friends, but how to let them comment? The guestbook I’ve tried to use as a “review board” is FUBAR and no longer supported. I’ve tried Google docs before. Some of my friends had a hard time accessing it. Has anyone done anything with Disqus? How difficult would that be to add to a website and is it flexible enough to use as a review board?

I’m also thinking about consolidating my web presence. Right now I have several blogs; this one, another WordPress blog (for family tidings), my faithful livejournal, a Blogger (for religious issues), a sparkling new tumblr, and of course, Twitter and Facebook. The Facebook is personal, using my real name. The Twitter uses my online handle as does this, the livejournal, and the tumblr. I could easily add a WP blog to my site; that’s one of the apps my web provider offers. I’m trying to decide which way to jump so I can be poised for when I actually need/want to do self-promotion.

So, any ideas? My website needs some serious overhaul in any case!

Oh, and this blog is under an alternate spelling of my online handle, “Tikatu”. Just sayin’.

Crossposted from livejournal and tumblr.

Taking a break to update on Camp NaNoWriMo

I decided to do the Camp NaNoWriMo July session, even though I previously tried (and bombed) in April. I’ve found in past years that July isn’t quite as busy for the family as the rest of the summer seems to be. So, I picked up the novel, dusted it off, and went back to the beginning.

I had a good start, but pretty soon lagged behind on my word count. There’s still so much world building to do! I’ve been getting great ideas, though, which has kept the plot moving. It’s just that pesky internal editor who gets in the way most days, as well as a borked OpenOffice on both my laptop and my desktop. No one has given me a straight answer at the support forums other than “use .odt”, which I refuse to do. Not too fond of proprietary formats that I can’t share with friends who have other software. So, I’ve switched over to Scrivener. Haven’t done much fooling around with all the bells and whistles yet, but I’m liking it so far. I have the 30 day trial on the desktop and the Camp NaNoWriMo version on the laptop. I think, if I reach my goal–and it looks like I will–I’ll buy it. Reaching my goal means I get it for half price! :)

Though goals are flexible for Camp, I went with the traditional 50K. After floundering with that OpenOffice problem and spending a couple of days just goofing off, I’ve really picked up the pace! Right now I’m a day ahead of the word count. That’ll change at midnight, when I’ll be just over the day’s goal. My intention is to keep at least a day ahead. Easy right now as I’m sliding into stuff I’ve had in my head but never have put down on virtual paper. The visuals are there and becoming more and more defined as I continue. Some pretty horrific stuff, too–the vampires have shown up and so have the dragons. There’s a grand plan to kill off one of my MCs; just need to shape up how and when this will happen. I’ve got an idea for a sixth group of elvenkind, one which is far friendlier to the humans than any of the other five.  (I really need to flesh out that fifth group!)

Still tons to do! For the first time, my extended family has had to listen to me groan and complain (or boast!) about the novel. My oldest niece has been asking me questions about it, which is a real switch! I’ve got some decisions to make about self-promotion, too. Never to early to think about that!

Well, back to the book! I’ll crosspost here from my livejournal from now on (also to my new tumblr). Later, y’all!