Writer’s Transition

I noted last October that I was dealing with writer’s apathy. I was hoping that NaNo would snap me out of it. As much as I liked working on my NaNo project and how in the groove I got while I was working on it, I don’t think that it did. I do think, though, that it opened my eyes up to a new possibility.

Maybe it’s not writer’s apathy. Or not maybe it’s not anymore.

Maybe it’s writer’s transition.

When I transitioned from fanfiction to non-fanfiction, I went through a period of writer’s block in which I didn’t write much of anything. It’s entirely possible that my current bout of meh isn’t so much apathy, but a sign of another transition. What kind, I’m not sure. Maybe it’s going from fiction to non-fiction, since I am looking at making some progress on a couple of non-fiction ideas and I am working on a podcast. Maybe it’s a transition of my fiction away from horror to another genre. Maybe it’s a transition away from writing (for now) to something else, like podcasting (which does involve some writing).

Maybe it’s a transition away from writing entirely.

Hell, maybe it’s not a transition at all. Maybe I just need to clear out a bunch of my projects just so I have space to work on something new.

Right now (write now?) I don’t know. I can’t say for sure. I have no intention of stopping what I’m doing until I feel certain about what’s going on. But I’m keeping myself open to a shift. I sort of feel like I’m waiting for a specific something, that “you’ll know it when you see it” thing, and as soon as I do, everything will come into perspective again. I’ll know where I am and what the hell I’m doing.

But, like I said, until then, I’m still working, still writing, still checking off my To Do List.

No need to be bored while I wait for that sign, right?

January Writing Projects

New year, new decade, new projects, trying new things.

I’ve been kicking around the idea of working on some non-fiction books. Yes, of course about reruns. What else do I act like I have any authority on? But I’ve been floundering on exactly what to do with these ideas. How do I get them out of my head and onto paper and formed into something coherent?

Well, I’m still not one hundred percent sure. But I do know that rolling it over the dips and swells of my grey matter ain’t getting it done either, so it’s time that I do some trial and error and experimentation. Let’s see where this goes.

I know I still have plenty of fiction projects to work on (and probably will throughout the year), but I decided to start off this new year and this new decade by going in a different direction.

Who knows what I might find?

You will find that Murderville: The Coldest Case is beginning on January 14th! Get in on the ground floor by becoming a patron right now. $1 an episode lets you read, $2 an episode gets you a sweet bonus every other month. Season 4 of Murderville is sure to be a chilling good time.

I’ll also be working on the next episode of Book ’em, Danno this month, but episode 8 came out last month, just before the end of the year. Give it a listen and a like and spread the word. Joy is meant to be shared.

December Writing Projects

Ho ho ho. It’s the most stressful time of the year. At least for me. Because I haven’t even begun my Grinchmas making this year, have barely even thought about it, and this year I have a day job to work around.

As I always say…I’m not happy unless I’m driving myself crazy.

And since I will be busy doing just that, it’s only right that I go easy on the writing this month. The only project that I have lined up is finishing the latest round of revisions on (Vampires) Made in America. I know. I started that months ago, but between NaNo and squeezing in an episode of Book ’em, Danno last month, I only worked on the manuscript for a couple of days. Despite being pressed for time, I think I can get it done since I only have about 50 pages left to do.

I’m also going to try to squeeze in one more episode of Book ’em Danno before the end of the year. I’m getting quicker on the recording, but the editing still takes me hours. If you ever wanna feel self-conscious about your breathing and how often you pause while talking, start a podcast.

Speaking of, Episode 7 of Book ’em, Danno went live just a few days ago. Give that a listen and feel free to talk it up to your friends by liking, subscribing, favoriting, rating, reviewing, commenting, sharing, whatever. It’ll make my heart grow three sizes.

And if you’re wondering what’s happening with Murderville, well, the Season 4 promo goes live for everybody on December 3rd. It’s going to be a good one, so become a patron and don’t miss out. $1 an episode let’s you read; $2 an episode gets you a bonus every other month, like the one that will be happening on December 17th.

NaNoWriMo 2019 Winner!

I hit 50,000 words on November 17th and finished the first draft of The Support Group Meets on Wednesday on November 21st. Final word count was about 54,000 words, which isn’t too bad. I’m already thinking of revisions. Of course, I’m going to sit on it for a while before I go down that road. No telling what some time and a fresh read will bring.

Most days, the words came pretty easily. The hang-ups were usually me getting started or not getting distracted by social media. I think all but one day I was able to get my word count in before my day job shift started. I was lucky. The story flowed really well. Any issues I had were me getting in my own way, like always.

One thing I’ve noticed in the last few NaNos in which I’m writing an actual novel and not a couple of novellas is that the first drafts are getting better. I’ve got a better understand of the story, even if I don’t have the most exact outline. My first wins were due to very specific outlines that I followed. Those manuscripts usually needed a lot of revision, but that bit of hand holding helped me get the confidence I needed to know I could get the job done. They gave me the base to build on to do a better job of crafting a first draft. They helped me get a better feel for what the story is and how to get it down on the page.

There are still things I struggle with. I have yet to successfully execute a B-plot in a first draft. And even after all of these years, description is something that usually happens in the revisions. I put some key things in during the first draft, but never enough. Some people put too much; I’ve always been the opposite.

The challenge of writing a 50,000 word novel in 30 days is no longer a challenge for me. It hasn’t been for a while. Now the challenge of each NaNo is small and more specific. It involves challenging myself to do better, to write a better first draft, to work on my writing weaknesses.

Hopefully…someday…it’ll pay off.

November Writing Projects–This Year’s NaNo

It is once again that time of year in which I torture myself by writing 50,000+ words in 30 days. This year I’m going back to writing a novel.

This year’s NaNo project is The Support Group Meets on Wednesday. I’ve already written it as a short story (which is really just like a bad first chapter) and it was my entry in the script writing contest last year. So I’ve already got a synopsis and the first fifteen pages of a script for it. And maybe one day I’ll get around to finishing that script.

But in the meantime, I really do want to get this idea out in its entirety in some form (really, it would make a good script or novel) and I think it will be make a good NaNo project. I like the idea, I’m interested in it, and I think it’s hearty enough to get me to 50,000 words without much trouble.

Provided I can be productive, of course.

If all works out like usual and I’m done before Thanksgiving, I’ll get back to revising (Vampires) Made in America. I didn’t finish it last month (I didn’t think I would), but I’ve only got less than 100 pages left to revise.

I probably won’t get it finished before the end of this month, either.

Maybe before the end of the year.

The official promo for Season 4 of Murderville goes live for patrons this month. So become a patron and don’t miss out on the next Munsterville mystery and who will be solving it starting January 2020.

Episodes 5 and 6 of Book ’em, Danno went live last month. I’ll do my best to get another episode out this month, but since I got behind and never really caught up and now it’s NaNo, I can make no promises. Didn’t I warn you about this? I believe I did.

Writer’s Apathy

I think the last time I had a true writer’s block was back in my early twenties when I was transitioning from writing mostly fanfiction to writing mostly original stuff. As the fanfiction ideas disappeared, the original ideas weren’t quite there, and there was a time when I didn’t write anything at all. There was a certain amount of anxiety preventing me from trying. I wasn’t sure that I could write anything if I wasn’t writing fanfiction and I wasn’t sure I was good enough to even bother trying.

But, I got past that. Obviously.

What I have now isn’t writer’s block. It’s writer’s apathy.

It’s like having writer’s block, but instead of being unable to write, I don’t know what to write because I kind of don’t care.

I mean I do, but I don’t.

I’ve got my projects list and I’m currently revising (Vampires) Made in America again, but it’s more for something to do -to say that I’m writing- rather than because I really want to.

It’s been a little while since I’ve really wanted to write anything. I thought that much of my problem had to do with my depressive episode earlier this year. But that’s abated and the apathy remains. No matter how many times I ask myself “What do you really want to work on? What do you really want to write?”, my answer is always “I don’t know.” I look at my projects list, I look at my idea notebook, and nothing really jazzes me so much that I feel like I have to work on it right now.

I’m hoping that NaNo helps snap me out of this. I like the project that I picked (even if I don’t have that feeling of urgency to do it), so I’m hoping that it will re-energize my writing mojo. Otherwise I’m going to have to start asking myself some really uncomfortable existential questions like “Do I still want to be a writer?” and “Who am I if I’m not one?” And frankly, I’m just too shallow for those kinds of questions.

The question that I need to answer is “What do I really want to write now?” because “I don’t know” isn’t cutting it as an answer. I need to keep asking until I get an answer because I think that there is one. I’m avoiding it for some reason. Maybe because I know I won’t like the answer. Or maybe because I know that the answer will take me out of my comfort zone.

Whatever it is, I need to do myself a favor, stop dodging the question, and just answer it.

Time for a resolution.

October Writing Projects

It’s NaNo time!

Yes, it’s October and October means NaNoWriMo prep. I’ve known what I want to write for NaNo for months and I already have a reasonable outline available (I’ll reveal the project next month as usual). What’s left is refining the plan and outline I have. I’m a little bit ahead of the game this year, so I hope it bodes well.

I’m also going to continue revising (Vampires) Made in America. I’ve been taking my time with it because after I rewrote the beginning and got rid of the first chapter, I realized that it wasn’t another point of view that I needed, but another personality. Trust me when I say that makes sense. I’m not sure I’ll get done with it this month, but now that I know what I’m doing and I got through that initial first chapter rewrite, things are moving along much faster.

I’m also going to try to be a bit more productive with Book ’em, Danno this month. I’ve gotten a little behind in my recording and I really need to get my pineapples picked before NaNo, so to speak.

As for Book ’em, Danno, episode 4 went live last month on Soundcloud and iTunes for your listening enjoyment. Episode 5 will be available for your ears later this week. Do listen, like, subscribe, review, recommend, force upon friends, family, and strangers, etc. That sort of support is very much appreciated.

Now is a great time to become a Murderville patron because the Season 4 preview episode goes live on October 8th and you can read that for as little as $1 an episode. If you go for $2 or more, you get a sweet bonus every other month, including this month, which happens on October 22nd. Season 4 starts January 14th of 2020!