I'm a writer who creates original fiction and fanfiction, mostly for the DC universe, with a focus on the Bat family and Superman. I also own Asian Ball Jointed Dolls that I tell stories about and take pictures of.
I put two officially incomplete stories up on AO3 just now.
They’re Beyond Life and Death (which I really would have liked to write a few more chapters of but don’t see it ever happening) and Taking Up The Mantle, which was so close to done that I don’t even feel guilty for putting it on AO3. All that one needed was an epilogue that I don’t think was truly necessary.
More incomplete stories may be coming to AO3 as the days go by. I need to let them go so I stop beating myself up over it.
On the way to work I was listening to the Hobbit (yes, still, three days later I’m still listening to it on repeat) and I realized something.
Normally, say over the last several years, when I listened to music it made me picture stories in my head. Those stories have, pretty much exclusively, been fanfiction up until recently. At first Superman Returns, then Smallville, later the Batboys with occasion diversions into other fandoms on a whim.
I don’t do that anymore.
Well, I can’t say that music doesn’t inspire stories. It does. Lots and lots and lots of them. But they’re not fanfic. They’re original stories.
I don’t think about Superman or Batman anymore. I don’t ponder Jason and Tim and Dick and Damian, Steph and Cass. I don’t dream up AUs for them to occupy, situations for them to deal with.
As much as I love the characters, and I still do (though only up until the DCnU—after that, no go), their hold on my imagination is fading rapidly.
The DCnU was such a painful mess for me that I think it killed my DC muse. I’m not sure at this moment that I’m going to get back to writing them. I don’t know if I’ll ever finish the stories I have started. I hate the thought of leaving them unfinished but I just have no interest at all in working on them.
There is no joy in fanfic for me right now.
But there’s SO MUCH JOY in my own stories! Seriously, even when the story’s being hugely frustrating (as the most recent one was) it’s a ton of fun. Writing my characters and developing my worlds is seriously happy-making for me. Sharing them by self publishing the stories is challenging and technically difficult (especially when I can’t properly type ‘McFarland’ on the Amazon KDP entry form *grumble-growl*) but it’s still a joy.
I kind of just want to squee for hours about my characters and their worlds. (So you know, if you have questions, do ask! I’ll happily babble at you about them. :D)
I miss the Batboys and their world but… I just don’t want to write them right now.
I didn’t get much writing done today (890 words *sigh*) but I did finish the cover for Inina’s Blessings of Joy and it was a super-busy day at work so that’s pretty good.
Didn’t get any writing done at home because my mattress for my loft bed came in. Setting that up took a while. I forgot how much of a pain it is to make bunk beds. >:(
But it’s made (well enough given that I probably won’t get kicked out for snoring tonight) so that’s good.
The light in my office got changed. Some order was created as well. There’s still a good ways to go but it’s improving quickly.
I also managed to print out Inina’s Blessings so that I can proofread it. That means that I should be able to get it up on my POD supplier sometime this weekend, which means it’ll be up for sale on Amazon and Smashwords by Monday. :D
I may make Inina’s Blessings the Free Fiction Friday story, even though it’s not yet published. Sneak peek! Maybe. We’ll see.
But wrestling with the mattress gave me sore muscles (I’m so darn out of shape!) so I’m heading to bathtime.
But I did battle with it and successfully uploaded The Hobbit! :D
How much you want to bet I’m going to play the Misty Mountain song on repeat for oh, fifty-billion years or so. XD
In writing today, I finished the last chapter of Artifacts of Awareness (Yay!) and (hopefully) found someone to beta it. That means that it’ll be on tap by the end of June no problem. This makes me happy.
I’ve also decided that I really want to write an original story like The Collar.
Not that I want to file off the serial numbers, exactly. No, what I want to do is write a story that takes a character (already named Taylor or Tay) from the early stages of being unjustly enslaved and the severe Stockholm Syndrome he gets from the training through to being bought and then onwards into recovering his sense of identity and getting justice at last.
There was something very cathartic about writing The Collar and I suspect that this project will be even moreso once I get going on it. I expect it’ll turn into a book. I mean, The Collar was 35K and I didn’t delve very deeply into a lot of stuff I could have.
So there’s that.
Tomorrow I have a dentist appointment. That means less time at work but also less time to write. *sighs* And I’m still sick, which is no fun at all. Poor Dentist! I hope I don’t give him my cold.
Thursday we’re getting two light fixtures replaced in the house. The hubby’s taking care of that but I’ll be able to post pictures of my not-quite finished office once that’s done. Let’s see if I remember to do it.
Other than that, not much going on. I’ve got my fingers crossed that the cold isn’t an ear infection giving me hell but… well. We’ll see. I get ear infections easily.
For now though, I’m headed to bath and then bed. Goodnight everyone!
I’m almost done with Artifacts of Awareness, just one chapter and a tiny bit to go. Also got quite a ways on the new smut story and they’re still adorably fluffy in the middle of sex (well, foreplay but I’m almost to the sex now).
Should be done or almost done on both tomorrow even with the cold.
Today was another busy day but I did manage to get some writing done.
I’ve started a short story, fluffy smut with ice play since I like ice play, and I have to say the two characters in it are just adorable. They’ve spent most of the 1600 words I’ve gotten written so far laughing and teasing each other while making each other utterly horny. It’s a blast to write. XD
I also managed to find another artist to work with me on covers. This story’s going to be hers to do and I expect it’ll come out late in June or early in July. Doesn’t mean I can’t have the cover done early, just that it probably won’t go up until then.
In regular life stuff, I got groceries, did the laundry and put it all away, did a little more work on organizing my office and tried making quiche in a cup. The quiche turned out really good. :D
Tomorrow’s goal will be to get more chapters done on Artifacts of Awareness, write more of the new fluffy smut story, get my sewing table properly set up and maybe have sexy fun times with the hubby. We’ll see how much I actually do get done. Oh, and actually do some work while I’m at work. *laughs*
For now I’m going to eat Haagen Daas Ice cream (chocolate raspberry bars) and do a little surfing before bath and bed. Goodnight everyone!
1. PD James: On just sitting down and doing it… Don’t just plan to write—write. It is only by writing, not dreaming about it, that we develop our own style.
2. Steven Pressfield: On starting before you’re ready… [The] Resistance knows that the longer we noodle around “getting ready,” the more time and opportunity we’ll have to sabotage ourselves. Resistance loves it when we hesitate, when we over-prepare. The answer: plunge in.
3. Esther Freud: On finding your routine… Find your best time of the day for writing and write. Don’t let anything else interfere. Afterwards it won’t matter to you that the kitchen is a mess.
4. Zadie Smith: On unplugging… Work on a computer that is disconnected from the internet.
5. Kurt Vonnegut: On finding a subject… Find a subject you care about and which you in your heart feel others should care about. It is this genuine caring, and not your games with language, which will be the most compelling and seductive element in your style. I am not urging you to write a novel, by the way — although I would not be sorry if you wrote one, provided you genuinely cared about something. A petition to the mayor about a pothole in front of your house or a love letter to the girl next door will do.
6. Maryn McKenna: On keeping your thoughts organized… Find an organizational scheme for your notes and materials; keep up with it (if you are transcribing sound files or notebooks, don’t let yourself fall behind); and be faithful to it: Don’t obsess over an apparently better scheme that someone else has. At some point during your work, someone will release what looks like a brilliant piece of software that will solve all your problems. Resist the urge to try it out, whatever it is, unless 1) it is endorsed by people whose working methods you already know to be like your own and 2) you know you can implement it quickly and easily without a lot of backfilling. Reworking organizational schemes is incredibly seductive and a massive timesuck.
7. Bill Wasik: On the importance of having an outline… Hone your outline and then cling to it as a lifeline. You can adjust it in mid-stream, but don’t try to just write your way into a better structure: think about the right structure and then write to it. Your outline will get you through those periods when you can’t possibly imagine ever finishing the damn thing — at those times, your outline will let you see it as a sequence of manageable 1,000 word sections.
8. Joshua Wolf Shenk: On getting through that first draft… Get through a draft as quickly as possible. Hard to know the shape of the thing until you have a draft. Literally, when I wrote the last page of my first draft of “Lincoln’s Melancholy” I thought, Oh, shit, now I get the shape of this. But I had wasted years, literally years, writing and re-writing the first third to first half. The old writer’s rule applies: Have the courage to write badly.
9. Sarah Waters: On being disciplined… Treat writing as a job. Be disciplined. Lots of writers get a bit OCD-ish about this. Graham Greene famously wrote 500 words a day. Jean Plaidy managed 5,000 before lunch, then spent the afternoon answering fan mail. My minimum is 1,000 words a day – which is sometimes easy to achieve, and is sometimes, frankly, like shitting a brick, but I will make myself stay at my desk until I’ve got there, because I know that by doing that I am inching the book forward. Those 1,000 words might well be rubbish – they often are. But then, it is always easier to return to rubbish words at a later date and make them better.
10. Jennifer Egan: On being willing to write badly… [Be] willing to write really badly. It won’t hurt you to do that. I think there is this fear of writing badly, something primal about it, like: “This bad stuff is coming out of me…” Forget it! Let it float away and the good stuff follows. For me, the bad beginning is just something to build on. It’s no big deal. You have to give yourself permission to do that because you can’t expect to write regularly and always write well. That’s when people get into the habit of waiting for the good moments, and that is where I think writer’s block comes from. Like: It’s not happening. Well, maybe good writing isn’t happening, but let some bad writing happen… When I was writing “The Keep,” my writing was so terrible. It was God-awful. My working title for that first draft was, A Short Bad Novel. I thought: “How can I disappoint?”
11. AL Kennedy: On fear… Be without fear. This is impossible, but let the small fears drive your rewriting and set aside the large ones until they behave – then use them, maybe even write them. Too much fear and all you’ll get is silence.
12. Will Self: On not looking back… Don’t look back until you’ve written an entire draft, just begin each day from the last sentence you wrote the preceeding day. This prevents those cringing feelings, and means that you have a substantial body of work before you get down to the real work which is all in… The edit.
13. Haruki Murakami: On building up your ability to concentrate… In private correspondence the great mystery writer Raymond Chandler once confessed that even if he didn’t write anything, he made sure he sat down at his desk every single day and concentrated. I understand the purpose behind his doing this. This is the way Chandler gave himself the physical stamina a professional writer needs, quietly strengthening his willpower. This sort of daily training was indispensable to him.
14. Geoff Dyer: On the power of multiple projects… Have more than one idea on the go at any one time. If it’s a choice between writing a book and doing nothing I will always choose the latter. It’s only if I have an idea for two books that I choose one rather than the other. I always have to feel that I’m bunking off from something.
15. Augusten Burroughs: On who to hang out with… Don’t hang around with people who are negative and who are not supportive of your writing. Make friends with writers so that you have a community. Hopefully, your community of writer friends will be good and they’ll give you good feedback and good criticism on your writing but really the best way to be a writer is to be a writer.
16. Neil Gaiman: On feedback… When people tell you something’s wrong or doesn’t work for them, they are almost always right. When they tell you exactly what they think is wrong and how to fix it, they are almost always wrong.
17. Margaret Atwood: On second readers… You can never read your own book with the innocent anticipation that comes with that first delicious page of a new book, because you wrote the thing. You’ve been backstage. You’ve seen how the rabbits were smuggled into the hat. Therefore ask a reading friend or two to look at it before you give it to anyone in the publishing business. This friend should not be someone with whom you have a romantic relationship, unless you want to break up.
18. Richard Ford: On others’ fame and success… Try to think of others’ good luck as encouragement to yourself.
19. Helen Dunmore: On when to stop… Finish the day’s writing when you still want to continue.
20. Hilary Mantel: On getting stuck… If you get stuck, get away from your desk. Take a walk, take a bath, go to sleep, make a pie, draw, listen to music, meditate, exercise; whatever you do, don’t just stick there scowling at the problem. But don’t make telephone calls or go to a party; if you do, other people’s words will pour in where your lost words should be. Open a gap for them, create a space. Be patient.
21. Annie Dillard: On things getting out of control… A work in progress quickly becomes feral. It reverts to a wild state overnight… it is a lion growing in strength. You must visit it every day and reassert your mastery over it. If you skip a day, you are, quite rightly, afraid to open the door to its room. You enter its room with bravura, holding a chair at the thing and shouting, ‘Simba!’
22. Cory Doctorow: On writing when the going gets tough… Write even when the world is chaotic. You don’t need a cigarette, silence, music, a comfortable chair, or inner peace to write. You just need ten minutes and a writing implement.
23. Chinua Achebe: On doing all that you can… I believe myself that a good writer doesn’t really need to be told anything except to keep at it. Just think of the work you’ve set yourself to do, and do it as well as you can. Once you have really done all you can, then you can show it to people. But I find this is increasingly not the case with the younger people. They do a first draft and want somebody to finish it off for them with good advice. So I just maneuver myself out of this. I say, Keep at it. I grew up recognizing that there was nobody to give me any advice and that you do your best and if it’s not good enough, someday you will come to terms with that.
24. Joyce Carol Oates: On persevering… I have forced myself to begin writing when I’ve been utterly exhausted, when I’ve felt my soul as thin as a playing card, when nothing has seemed worth enduring for another five minutes… and somehow the activity of writing changes everything. Or appears to do so.
25. Anne Enright: On why none of this advice really matters… The way to write a book is to actually write a book. A pen is useful, typing is also good. Keep putting words on the page.
But that’s okay. I got a lovely, lovely message that made my week SO much better about Fitting In and I still managed to make the minimum word count goal for the day so it’s all good. One and three quarters chapters done on Artifacts is a good thing. Better than good. *coos over the fanmail* :D
My office has been officially fully prepared for the delivery of my loft bed/desk tomorrow. The hubby will be home to supervise the setup and when I get home I can set up the desk we bought and yay! I’ll have oodles of space.
Now I’m going to head off to bath and bedtime. Hope you all have a wonderful night!
These are kind of fun! I like getting to just play like this, especially when I’m in the middle of a big project.
The knife gleamed in the dim light. Adalina swallowed convulsively as a tiny rainbow glimmered on the tip as it descended towards her stomach. She couldn’t tear her eyes away from the knife, couldn’t look up at Berta to see what she thought of Adalina spread out on the bed waiting for her.
Adalina’s skin dimpled under the tip of the knife when Berta leaned closer, close enough that her thick black hair swung down to obscure the blade for a moment. It had to cut her, it had to, but no, when Berta pulled back and pushed her hair back over her shoulder there was no blood, no cut, just the edge of the knife pressed into Adalina’s stomach.
She moaned, her breath coming so fast that her breasts bobbed like twin mounds of jelly before they were squashed and spread onto bread. That knife would be different, blunt and harmless, while this one promised so much. The thought of it cutting into Adalina’s skin, scoring a mark across her belly, making a scar that would bind them together made her whine.
This time when the knife pressed harder in response to Adalina’s lack of control, Adalina dared to glance up at Berta’s face. Berta’s hazel eyes were fierce and intent. Her eyebrows had drawn together as she concentrated on giving Adalina what she wanted. She smiled, vicious, proud and strong, bending to kiss Adalina even as the knife slowly slid across her belly.