Palladium – Chapter 32

I’ve now spent over 30 hours editing through Tangled Magic very carefully. It is my hopes to have a release date scheduled soon, but I still have a few more chapters to finish. One more week and I think I’ll be done. At least if my actions from this last weekend don’t bring another maelstrom to my life. Wish I could go into more detail there, but now is not the time.

What I can say is that in editing this book (again, and still finding issues with it), I’m working on my editing procedure. I’m changing things up a bit and it is working very well. It’s good because it will get me back to writing. I was writing so much that I created this big mound of stories, but I had no way to follow it up in order finish the stories. It really has been a mess that I haven’t wanted to look at or deal with. But, with this new process in place (hopefully one I can trust as much as I do my writing process), I can get back to productively writing.

Of course, there is that other thing in my life too. In the long run, it will be a fantastic thing. I just have to trust that the universe will help me get all the pieces in place. Right now, I just have to get though the next eight hours and find out if the figurative storm is going to hit me or die away. Wish me luck.


Cover and layout copyright © 2019 by Morning Sky Studios
Cover design by Dawn Blair/Morning Sky Studios
Cover art copyright © Rodjulian | Dreamstime.com, ©
Xneo | Dreamstime.com, and © Gualtiero Boffi| Dreamstime.com

Palladium

Chapter 32

by Dawn Blair

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Clouds over grassy knolls

Progression paintings for the new 18″x24″ acrylic painting I’ve been working on.

I wanted a bright autumn tree against a dark sky showing signs of winter coming. Here’s the first layer:

The dark clouds in the sky felt way too dark. I tried repeatedly to get it to lighten up. You can see some of the background mountain and trees here too.

You can see the dark clouds lightened up quite a bit here and I’ve added the trunks for the trees I want to be in the mid-ground, Also working on the trees, brush, and ground on the left side of the painting.

I finally decided I had to quit tinkering with the dark background clouds and get to work on my main tree. I’ve put it in and a tree on the left a little closer in the foreground. Built up this grassy knoll on the left side too. I really didn’t know if I liked it or not, but why should the land be flat. I decided to let it be and see what developed with it. The fun is in the exploring, right?

The final painting. I pushed in more weeds around the grassy knoll, which did remain, but I discarded the second tree stump closest to the right side of the canvas. It just didn’t look good, especially when I started the younglings along the left side of the remaining tree.

I love how the road divides this, making it look like fall has taken a deep hold on the right side along with the incoming storm while the right side sees fall coming, but is holding out the last breaths of summer. Hmm, I wonder if that’s a good title for this painting. That, as of right now, hasn’t been decided.

I’m thinking about framing this up, but I haven’t gotten that far yet. It’ll have to wait until I get home from Wizarding Dayz.

Speaking of which, I should probably go continue getting ready for the show. I hope you enjoyed taking a look at the progression of this painting.

Happy adventuring.

Progress – February 18, 2019

Let me here a big “Woo-hoo!”

WOO-HOO!

Oh, yeah! That’s what I’m talking about. *grin*

I know, you want to know why you have to give a big congratulatory whoop. Here it is: I finished my read-though edits of Tangled Magic last week and got it to my reader. She, in turn, sent me back my story Alexander’s Den. Now I just have to edit up those corrections.

Books I ordered to restock my supply for Wizarding Dayz come in. I’ll be heading to Sandy, Utah, for that later this week. I hope the weather is good for driving there and back, as well as for my son who is coming home from Pocatello to help me with the show.

I finished the 18″x24″ painting I’ve been working on the last couple of weeks. I hope to have more on that later in the week — planning on doing the progression painting photos on the blog. We’ll see if I get there or if I’m too busy getting ready for the show.

Also spent some time in my booth getting audio recorded since I won’t be doing any for a couple of weeks.

Here are the numbers for this week:

Fiction words written last week:  4,206 words.

Blogs/Newsletter articles/non-fiction written:  1,228 words.

Daily word goal reached for 191 days! Weekly word goal reached for 30 weeks.

Writing month to date total:  14,938 words

Writing year to date total: 40,102 words

Drawing/painting last week: As I said above, I finished my 18″x24″ acrylic landscape painting. I posted a photo of it online and it seems like people are enjoying it.

Audio: I spent 2 hours editing and recording audio. It was very slow because as I was merging in the dialogue for a chapter, I kept discovering missing lines. I tried to go onto another chapter, but I wasn’t ready for that any other chapter later on down the line either. So, I had to wait until I could find time to get back to it. But now I should be good again, so I can get back to work on that. It did give me some time to, oh, sleep and work on the edits for Tangled Magic. I think that’s the reason I got through the edits. I guess that’s one of the good things about doing multiple things.




Progress – October 29, 2018

I want to personally apologize if anyone heard my near continuous, mental screams of anguish this weekend.

It has been very difficult.

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Those blurs are my many eraser marks! Writer fortified with much coffee and a chocolate biscotti. 

I finished the plot outline for Tangled Magic and Walk the Path, which meant it was time to sharpen the focus. That’s kind of hard to do when you don’t even have focus. On Saturday, I obsessed over the dang thing so much that I nearly didn’t get my words done for the day. I did, but I totally had to shove the story out of my head and not let in any distraction. I did write about Cirvel, but he took me on a wild ride and showed me a piece of his world from before the time of Tangled Magic and so I was on a thrilling adventure. If Cirvel had turned to me, as character often do, and asked if I now really, really, really wanted Rivic to win, I probably would have sank to my knees, giggled, and said, “No, Cirvel, you are forever the Lord of Gohaldinest. Only a monster would want that wimpy kid to beat you.” **giggle**

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What was he waiting for?

just yesterday I was writing about Steigan and a conversation he was having with Arlyn. It’s a very wise conversation. It really got me to thinking that Prince of the Ruined Land is about Steigan feeling all the confusion about all that has happened in the first three books. what does the Destroyer want

Yes, he learns lots of things and part of the story knits together, but he’s still conflicted. Book 5, The Missing Thread, will be about him coming to terms with it. Maybe I needed to get to where I’m at in order to get Steigan through this.

 

Progress – September 17, 2018

This, I feel, has been a good writing week. It’s had an excellent pace to it.

Earlier this week, I gave an introduction into Stonecharmer.

Since then, I have finished the story! Or at least the first book of the story. I still have my ‘rabbit hole’ editing to do on it, but I want to get a ways into the next book before I do that. I’ve know since about halfway through that there would be another book, Stonebreaker. I have now started that book. I’m less than a 1,000 words in so far, but it won’t be long since the story is rolling along.

Plus, the night before I knew I was going to finish Stonecharmer, I felt that there was to be a third book. I know the title, but I don’t yet know if it’s an official title or just a working title, so I’m not going to post it now. Maybe as I get further along. Maybe as soon as I know I have enough material for a third book. I’m really not sure. At this point, I have only minimal story in front of me that I know about. I had really liked the idea of this duo of stories, something along the lines of Tangled Magic and Walk the Path where there are only two parts.

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Ideas in weird places

Writers are often asked where they get their ideas.

While I can’t speak for other writers, I know that generally something (anything) sparks a character to start speaking to me. The ones that stick are typically very loud and won’t leave me alone. They tell me their story.

But that’s how the stories get started. Sometimes the more important plot elements of the story come from different places. I never know where I will get inspired.

Here are some examples and a little bit about what they roused:

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Progress – May 14, 2018

My son was home from college last week and we had a lot to accomplish in the time he was here since he was going back to keep his work study job through the summer. It’s going to be strange with him not at home, but hopefully we’ll still get to see him often.

It’s just been a strange week and I know part of it has been having him home and knowing time was short. I got dictating done, but transcribing came much later in the week. I got to fill in a couple of scenes for Onesong through. You Wednesday readers, you have another week added to the story. Lucky you!

I feel like the most important thing I got done this week was putting together my Loki cover.

Microsoft updates, followed by Adobe updates and issues because of the Microsoft updates, really slowed down my progress too. I lost dang near a whole day because I was either waiting for updates to go, researching issues I was having with programs, or just generally being frustrated because things were going wrong. I really hate IT work — there’s a reason I made a choice several years ago not to pursue it deeper. I deal with enough computer problems as is that I certainly don’t want them in my creative work. Unfortunately, it’s an evil in nearly every profession these days. I need a non-tech hobby! Maybe something like blacksmithing. Or spinning. I do like weaving.

Kidding — I don’t have time for a hobby now.

I tried to get a print version of my children’s story ready, but that’s been painful and frustrating. I prepared a cover, but that’ll have to be redone now. I’m glad I’m dealing with all this now before I start my next story, but dang… This is where I’m learning a lot, but pounding my head against the wall at the same time.

I had an outdoor show on Saturday which got cut short due to rain keeping most people home. It was cold and I was sore on Sunday, but I got to hang out with a friend and sold a couple books, so that makes it a good day, right? Dumb me decided to go home and make the spaghetti I had in the freezer rather than heating up the leftover chicken I’d made the day before in the crockpot and had been planning on for dinner. Even with the short show, I really didn’t have the energy. It left me tired as well on Sunday. I should have been writing more than I did after my son left and the other one went to work, but I didn’t have the focus. I thought I’d been writing well, but then it ended up being less than 600 words.

I did get to hear from readers this week that they are excited for Onesong and 1-800-IceBaby. Those moments have been the highlight of my tired week. Thank you for your notes to me and your words of encouragement.

Fiction words written last week: 3,445 words

Blogs/Newsletter articles/non-fiction written:  2,435 words

Score a big #5 for my weekly word count streak.

Writing month to date total:  11,636 words

Writing year to date total: 130,131 words

Drawing/painting last week: None

Audio: I spent 3 hours editing audio.

What the cat dragged in

I write in the dark, which means that I like to write without planning out the entire story.

For the longest time, I was convinced that I was the only person who wrote like us. It seemed like everybody else had plot outlines and character sheets and notes and research. I seem to be the only one who likes to write the story and then go back and have the elements that I needed. I like to discover the story as I went to log.

I can’t tell you the amount of relief that I felt when I discovered that there were other writers, as well as a term, a couple of them actually, for those who like to write into the dark. Discovery writers, is another term. Pantster, yet another. My preferences would have to be writing into the dark, or discovery writer.

But that does bring up a good question: what do you do when you need to know certain elements of the story?

I was thinking about this as I was driving to work. I like to take the country roads, mostly so that I can think, talk to myself, and be in my Zen head at 50 miles per hour rather than 80 miles per hour. I’m not insane. So as I was driving along enjoying the country morning, I got to thinking about what I need to do in the next Sacred Knight book.

That’s when, of course, the little voice had to pop up, “Aren’t you writing this story into the dark? Shouldn’t you be discovering this as you write, instead of pre-planning this?”

I spent enough time with my cynical voice to know it when I hear it. If it’s snarky, and sounds little bit like Dragzel, it’s my critical voice.

I instantly found myself replying back, out loud, “I’m just throwing things into the hopper to let it walk around in my subconscious. I don’t need to make firm plans. I’m just mulling it over. Then we’ll see what the cat actually spits out.”

A lot of times as I’m driving and thinking about things, I do have great ideas. It is one of the reasons why I dictate while I drive. Don’t judge me. I know you talk to yourself, or sing to the radio. Same diff.

But yes, in some ways mulling things over is equivalent to plotting things out. Although, I would put forth one major difference. When the scene decides to arrive to discovery writer, it comes full force, the complete scene, meaning: narrative, dialogue, setting, the whole shebang. While I can’t say it’s completely true, I would say that people who plot their stories would only get a certain elements, such as just an action, needed in order to craft the scene. I’m not saying that one way of writing is better than another. I’m merely saying that there are differences, and I think those differences are and how the scenes land in our head. I would even say, that in truth, writers are really a combination of both at all times. Even when you’re plotting, you don’t know what’s going to happen until you make the decision to make it part of the plot.

I personally would rather get the writing down then have to think things up. Because what I’m thinking things up, I am forcing the story and I’m losing energy out of it. But that’s merely my thoughts about that.

So, I know that when I get the right scene for the story that I’m been mulling over, it will come complete and perfect. At least in my head. What actually arrives down on the page will not be as perfect as it is in my head. It never is. But that’s a discussion for another day.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I must get back to mulling things over.

The 6th Loki Novella – update

I don’t often give updates on the Loki novellas I’m working on other than to say that I’m writing.

The 6th novella, which takes place after the first 5 and makes up a complete arc, took some time to get back to since I finished writing it in my dad’s hospital room shortly before he passed away. I was glad to have other stories to turn to. Friends asked me if Loki was bugging me because he’s always got this “Me, me, me, me, me!” going on in the back of my mind, but even he has been quite since last year.

Until I started finishing up Prince of the Ruined Land.

As I neared the end, even though I still had things to do, I heard Loki whispering in my mind, “6:00 tomorrow morning, you are mine. Now finish this up and let’s get back to me!”

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