Gearing up for the next week

I took a weekend off. No writing, no edits. I just wanted to have some fun, get my mind off it and get back into it on Monday.

It worked, for the most part. Now, I’m back in action, and it’s going to be great. There are a few things I want to patch up in the manuscript – such a presumptive word for a novella! Then, I send it off to my editor-type people. I’m hoping the process will be faster this time. I’ve had some practice.

So, I want to get a draft or 2 done this week, and a start on Deadlocked of at least 2000 words. It’s a pretty modest goal, I think. I might do a zombie flash. My shoulder’s been killing me, so I’ve been trying to stay away from the computer to let it get better. I think it’s all the hours I’ve been putting in.

Also coming up this week: Zombie Walk on Saturday! Awesome!

Including redeemed coupons, I sold 12 copies of Locked In between Amazon and Smashwords. That’s probably not bad at all.

Project Overload

That would make a good name for a book.

Between job, writing, editing, blogging, vlogging, keeping up with twitter and yet more job life is becoming hectic. I try to do job stuff in the morning, and writing in the afternoon. It keeps a routine.

But as of now, I think I need to shop around for project management software. All of my projects are becoming just too much to mentally keep track of. I have a Google Apps account, maybe it’s time to go shopping.

This week’s goals: Finish next edit of Locked In, and get Locked Out to 75%+ complete. I’m taking it easy. Friday is Canada Day, and it’s hard to get stuff accomplished on holidays when the boyfriend is home and wants to have fun. Plus, it’s Canada Day. I want to have fun!

I have muted hopes that this version of Locked In will be the last.

Nothing like a day off to beat writer’s block

I took yesterday off completely. I didn’t think about writing, or worry about it. I saw my friends, played some games and fussed with my garden a little bit.

I was back with a vengeance today. It seems like if you have writer’s block, to just forget about it for a day and it will come back. I managed to crank out 900+ words today, which is a pretty high daily count for me.

I’m starting to get a feel for the story and the characters. I was still stuck a bit when I first sat down today, so I started describing scenes and characters. Then, I started giving them more traits, more neuroses, more personality. Then I made them just a little more real. And then I made them talk, with extra conflict.

It’s looking good, and it’s going to be much longer than I originally planned.

In other news, day job is picking up again, and Twiter is still way too much fun. However, I wish it would stop recommending fake Portal/Half Life accounts. And everything NASA has ever done. I love you NASA, but you have too many Twitter accounts.

Back to normal, time to write about zombies!

Things are getting back to normal, finally. It seems already that my insane week of crazy working and weekend work was not in vain. Hopefully, I will know soon.

Tomorrow I want to get back to my writing, and record some audio too. It’s time to catch up on what really matters – the story! Some edits may happen too, waiting on critiques and stuff.

It’s time to really get into June’s story – Locked Out. July’s story’s working title: Deadlocked

August and beyond may be a departure from the zombie theme. It depends on my mood at the time. I might try something radically different to prevent being locked into a genre of my own making.

Didn’t get bullied into resuming D&D campaign. I have too much on my plate anyways. I suppose Knucklebuckles the pervy gnome’s resurrection shall have to wait.

All work and no play means no writing and no podcasts

Intense working weekend. Them’s the breaks when your deadline gets surprise upped by a few days on you. I was hoping to spew more of Locked Out, but it seems like that will have to wait. It’s so lame when the whole story clicks in your head and you’re just too busy to get to it.

I should have more time after Monday-ish. I have some rad ideas for good blog posts. My brain is mush right now. It’s not even zombie food.

I’m thinking of getting into podcasting. My years of soul-crushing sales and call center jobs tell me that I have an amazing voice. I should use it for something that’s not soul-crushing for once. I’m thinking of making audiobooks of my stories, and doing some good old fashioned talking.

Right now I’m so overloaded that I can’t deal with all my creative influx. I did start a twitter, it appears to be good for you. I have more zombie channels than friends. Love me, love my twitter!

As of Wednesday I should be back to my normal schedule. I hope my neovellas are still waiting for me when I get back. I miss you sweet bodily-substance spewing little jerks. Want to help me write horrific things? Check out the following two links before I finish both stories myself:

Bobby the Incontinent Space Cadet

Buster the Effeminate Cucumber Farmer Looks like it picked up again. I know what I’m off to do, and it’s not going to be pretty, but it’s going to be fun! I should be working on some outstanding reviews, but I just don’t want to. Maybe I can podcast the neovellas, that might rock if I could keep a straight face.

Planning some fun things

Not much to write about writing-wise. Locked In draft 5.3 is making the rounds, and day-job style work is interfering with my other creative ambitions. Eating is a good cause, though. And absence does make the heart grow fonder.

I’m planning some fun entries for both here and our dear Zombie Empress. I need to plan out some sweet images for anonymously-obsessed-boyfriend to crunch for me. He’s good like that. He’s also creating cover art for Locked Out, a story that’s not even near complete yet. I think he’s really into the whole storyline.

I can get into that a little. Locked In and Locked Out are part of a series of short stories that deal with a zombie apocalypse from non-traditional views. Locked In is from the vantage point of the zombie, and Locked Out concern itself with the story of the scientists who are trying to figure out what’s going on. A third story is planned for the military and evacuation perspective. I’m not sure if I’ll do one about survivors, the angle is so overplayed I’m not sure how to make it fresh without just churning out crap filled with chainsaw-wielding Mary Sues. False dichotomy, I know.

Cover art sneak peak! How to make a (good?) cover.

Today, anonymously-obsessed-boyfriend and I used the holiday Monday to full advantage. As promised, here is the cover for Locked In, followed by what I learned about fake blood:

(Update: Link to larger image was broken, got it working)

Locked In

Locked In cover

Now, for how to make a cover with zero budget, a digital camera and an image editor:

  1. Food colouring is amazing, but you can’t use it alone for “blood”. This was the first (and obvious) observation. However, it is very good at planning out where you want your hand prints to go.
  2. To make thick blood, corn starch and flour seem like very logical choices. However, while the blood will have great consistency and will stay where you put it, it will be fuchsia. See also: Klingon blood from Star Trek IV. Not zombie appropriate.
  3. Coat self in flaming pink blood.
  4. Walk into glass door and smear self convincingly on glass.
  5. Take pictures. Shower.
  6. ????? with Image editor
  7. Realize that everything looks awesome in grey scale.
  8. Profit? (Or a book cover that doesn’t involve making a sugar-based fake blood and sticky re-takes.)

There you have it. Time to get back to work.