A Glimmer of Hope

Posted by on May 1, 2017 in Rant And Ramble, Writing | 4 comments

Today marks an interesting day. A turning point perhaps. As I’ve allowed myself to struggle the past year on what I wanted to do with writing and publishing, I decided late last week that I didn’t want a life in which writing didn’t exist. I will write, I will publish, and maybe nothing will come of that, but maybe something will. Regardless, the stories that burn inside me continue to churn, and I will follow suit and write them on the digital parchment I’ve done so many times before. Some of them I will publish, some of them I will scrap, and some will be kept just for me, but all of them will be written to the best of my ability. Which brings me to why today is an interesting day. All the decisions of writing aside, today I completed something. Not a word count or a story, no, nothing so grand, but a single chapter. A single first chapter, to be exact. It’s an important milestone for many reasons. In part, it’s important because I’ve tried to write it for months, but anytime I sat down to write I only revised the 8 or so pages I’d already written, never adding more to the end tally. Part of the reason is doubt in my ability to write, part is doubt in my desire to write, and part is fear of failure. Today all of those reasons fell short. They weren’t enough to stop me and I completed it. It’s also a milestone because this story, Sacred Cities, I’ve written many times before. Perhaps that’s why there is so much at stake for me here. The story refuses to die inside me, yet thus far I’ve failed to produce it in the way I dreamed. So today I finished a first chapter that I’m certain is right. It might not be good, and it will most definitely be subject to change, but at the core of what it is and everything it represents, it is right. Today is an important day. A great day even. It marks my first day back after an absence I’m sad to have taken. Today promises nothing, but today I delivered something for myself. Something I have refused to do for a while, and with it comes a chance at gaining forward momentum. Today marks a day I feel proud of myself. Not for word count or writing, but for completion. It’s a day of success, and nothing makes me more eager to create more successes than after a day I’ve already done just that. Something about it makes it seem not so…impossible. It’s not everything, but it’s something, and sometimes a glimmer–no matter how small–is all we...

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I May Have to Quit you GOT

I May Have to Quit you GOT

Posted by on Jun 15, 2015 in Random, Rant And Ramble | 2 comments

Game of Thrones. I think many of us can admit there is a no-holds-bar story here that really grabs a hold of  us. I haven’t read the books, and I won’t pretend that I haven’t loved the show. I have. I just don’t know if I continue it any more. At least not on a week-by-week basis. I had no idea what to expect when I started watching it, but it’s quickly turned into a bit of a regret. The reason? Hopelessness. I get it. I do. The real world is cruel, we suffer consequences to our actions. We make our beds, we lie in them, we deal, life goes on…most of the time. The same is true for a story, and in this case, more specifically, Game of Thrones. Not everybody lives. Or in GOT’s case, everybody dies! It’s a sad truth that we all recognize. It’s like real life! The thing is, I already live in real life. Real life is already difficult at times. I already see death and sacrifice. I’ve already experience loss and pain. I’ve made mistakes and luckily I’ve lived to learn from them. I’ve done all this. Not on the same grand scale of course, but it’s existent in my life nonetheless. I feel it’s safe to say it exists in all of our lives to some degree. But I don’t want to watch real life. I live in real life. I want a story. Something different. I want to be taken on an adventure, and one that I’m happy to be on. I’m not sure I share that happiness with GOT any longer.     ***POSSIBLE SPOILERS AHEAD***     When Ned was taken in the first season, I was shocked. That word doesn’t even do true justice to how I felt. It was more like throwing a remote through a TV screen because it was the TV’s fault. I couldn’t believe it. Then Rob, Lady Stark, and a few others and I realized this show doesn’t hold back. How intense! At first it was gripping. I couldn’t believe they would slaughter my favorites. Soon after the second season, I began to get bored with it. I continued, of course, because I loved what was being created. The tension was…well, intense! The action was thick and the characters were rich. As the story has progressed through, I feel like each season has let me down a little more. That’s not to say it isn’t all fantastically put together, it is. From acting to directing to screenplay–it’s all wonderful. I just don’t know that it’s for me anymore. The reason for that feeling, I think, is the lack of hope. The entire reason I watch a show or movie, or read a book, is to enter another realm. My imagination joins with the creator’s for a little while and I let them take...

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A Story is Born

A Story is Born

Posted by on Jan 6, 2015 in Rant And Ramble | 4 comments

The New Year came with some decisions to be made, and as such, I have made them. Sacred Cities is going on the back burner for a little while. After 15 months and over 200k words in drafts and rewrites, I need a break. There is something about this story that I cannot let go. I can’t just scrap it as a lost cause. The story is there, it wants to be told, and it’s wonderful. Unfortunately, at the moment there is a lot of crap on top of the wonderful, and I’m a little tired of digging through it. I’ll be taking some time to tackle the blank page with a new story that has been pulling at me for several months. A lot of the beginning outline has been done in my down time the last few months and I think I’m ready to take this day dream to the next level. Sacred Cities was very heavy and emotional for me. Not just because of the content within the story, but because of everything I had tried to deal with while writing it. That may be part of why it’s been such a cluster of crap throughout several drafts. With the new story I’ll be working on, I’m going to bring the Fantasy, adventure, passion, and magic back to my world. I’m going to reach deep into my soul and just let it out. I want it to be exciting, fun, and something that pulls at my heart strings. I’m not setting any major goals or expectations for it. I’m just going to write. Unlike last year, I’m not setting writing goals or publication dates. I’m just going to hit the keyboard and see what happens. When I wrote The Protector series, that’s what I did. I just closed my eyes, opened up the story and wrote. I think that’s what Sacred Cities lacked, or is lacking. I took it too seriously. I didn’t let it evolve. I forced it into what I wanted it to be, and it ended up being too serious and often times dull. The scenes that were exciting, and the ones that will most likely remain once I tear it all down and rebuild it, were the ones I wrote when I just said “Fuck it!” and let the story go. That’s where I’m heading again. That’s where I need to go. Screw the sales ranks. Disregard the sales figures. Forget the business of writing for a little while and just write. That’s the plan. That’s the only plan. Write a story I want to write because it’s the type of story I want to read. That’s what has been missing and that’s what needs to come back. I realize now that when you take things too seriously, when writing becomes a job instead of an outlet, or a cause instead of...

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2015 and the loss of 2014

2015 and the loss of 2014

Posted by on Dec 29, 2014 in Author, Author Advice, Publishing, Rant And Ramble, Writing | 7 comments

2014 was a difficult year of evolution for me. It was better than 2013, which was a horrible experience for the most part,but 2014 did not shape up to be what I thought it would. It’s not all completely wasted, but I definitely expected a more powerful year. Instead, it was a year of growth and learning, which in all honesty, can be painful. At the end of 2013, I was ready for a new year. Boy, was I ready. I had published the final book in The Protector series, Endure, and I was moving on to bigger things after a year struggling through personal issues. Then 2014 came, and suddenly it was gone. I didn’t write as faithfully as I had in previous years. I can admit that much. My writing was sporadic at best. At first, and for most of the year, I thought it was me. I was recovering from major losses, my entire world had been changed, and I was trying to rediscover who I was and what I wanted out of life. I knew I wanted to keep writing, I just didn’t have it in me all the time. I thought one day I’d wake up and just be ready to get back at it. I wasn’t. Instead, I tried forcing it, regaining a little of my lost passion piece by piece, but even when I was sure I was ready, I still struggled. I wrote 80k words of Sacred Cities when I realized it wasn’t working. I probably realized it earlier, but I didn’t want to admit it. When I finally accepted it, I knew I had to do something drastic, something I’d never had to do before: I would delete a major chunk of the book and start again. 50k words to be exact. Even if you’re not a writer, surely you can understand how heartbreaking it is to delete that much of your work. I didn’t let it drag me down though, I grabbed the silver lining and told myself how much better the book would be because of it. I worked my butt off from that point on, and when it was done (again!) at a monstrous 183k words, I knew cutting those words was for the best. With my knew novel in rough draft  I was ready to start editing. The problem was, the 183k I’d written had been spread out over half the year. I didn’t realize what poor shape my story was in. Editing the book was painful. Very painful. I continued to tell myself I had to force my way through it to get back in the groove, but it wasn’t working. That’s when I realized that the book wasn’t done. Once again it wasn’t right, but this time I didn’t know why. I left it alone for a month, raking my brain over it. At this point,...

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A Darkness Survived

A Darkness Survived

Posted by on Dec 10, 2014 in Random, Rant And Ramble, Writing | 2 comments

The lovely Christine Nolfi was kind enough to invite me to share a brief essay on her blog about the long road back from my writing break. It’s been a long and sometimes difficult process, especially as the publishing world changes so rapidly. Sometimes it’s overwhelming just looking at it all again, especially when you’ve been away so long. The road back from any break can be tough to handle, but if you stick to it, you can power through anything. If you have a chance, swing by Christine’s website and check out my guest post. Leave some thoughts if you have the time, and check out the many wonderful guest post’s she has. There are–and will be–some great...

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When You Don’t Know You’re Lost

When You Don’t Know You’re Lost

Posted by on Nov 17, 2013 in News, Publishing, Random, Rant And Ramble, Writing | 14 comments

Since going back to work full-time and trying to adjust to a new routine, surprise, surprise, my writing has suffered even more. However, even though I don’t have the kind of time to write that I used to, I’m doing my best to make it happen with what time I do have. That being said, after such a long hiatus from social media, blogging, and writing, and the general ass-kicking I received from real-life that I let take me away from all of that, my confidence really took a nosedive. That’s something I haven’t experience in a long time, and I wasn’t prepared to handle it. As I jumped from one project to another, abandoning one story for something new and exciting that might keep me interested, I really didn’t care for anything I would write. And over time as I came back to it, reading it over I thought “It’s okay,” but it’s not a good enough story idea. Once again, I’d find myself starting one of the many other ideas I had saved up in the memory bank, for a short while anyway, until I’d abandon it. Then, rather than starting a new story, I’d go back and try to fix what I didn’t like with the old stories, but I only had a few chapters written in each and couldn’t figure out what the problem was. After messing around for long enough, I realized the problem was me and my confidence, or lack there of. It wasn’t that what I was writing was bad, or that the ideas didn’t work, I just didn’t think I had it in me anymore. I thought maybe I had written the best I had to offer and there was no point continuing. Yes, you read that right, I actually have considered just letting it all go. This year has been so full of struggle and broken promises I’d made to myself, that I just wasn’t sure I wanted to keep going. At best I figured I’d write here and there just for me, and give up on the entire idea of having a career as an author. Since I hadn’t been online promoting myself, finding new opportunities, and writing new books, my sales  and books rankings tanked. My book’s visibility dropped off the map, I wasn’t generating any new traffic, and naturally everything seemed to be falling apart. What was the point? I thought. I had been doing what I considered to be well. I wrote full-time, response on my stories was for the most part, decent, and I was happy doing what I was doing, so after taking a few months off, it all just disappeared? Really, what is the point of trying then? Pessimist much? Such is life sometimes. If this all sounds kind of wishy-washy or depressing, it’s because that’s exactly how I had been feeling. Everything...

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