Daily life: Wordage. Wow.

"She put down a tentative line or two and crossed them out. If the right twist would not come of itself, it was useless to manufacture it. She had her image - the world sleeping like a great top on its everlasting spindle - and anything added to that would be mere verse-making. Something might come of it some day. In the meanwhile she had got her mood on to paper - and this is the release that all writers, even the feeblest, seek for as men seek for love; and, having found it, they doze off happily into dreams and trouble their hearts no further."

--Dorothy L. Sayers: Gaudy Night.


This past week I wrote a 20,000-word novella.

I wrote it in three days.

On Thursday and Saturday, I wrote a collective total of 16,482 words.

Okay, I am officially putting to bed my long-standing belief that my days of being capable of high wordage are over. Whether I have time for high wordage is an entirely different matter; I have a lot of responsibilities these days, including an upcoming day job. But clearly, if I can toss off nine thousand words in a single day (which I did on Saturday), and still have time that day to write another scene or two if I'd wanted, then ability to write a lot of fiction is not my problem. It's highly likely that my real problems for the past decade have been Internet addiction and letting myself get distracted by projects that are less important than writing stories.

(I do think the fact that I'm no longer issuing each story as a separate commercial e-book is making a major difference to my writing productivity. There is a dramatic difference between how much time it takes to publish an e-book and how much time it takes to post a story online.)

Anyway, what this means is that I've completed my minimum word count for the month of May. Anything after this is bonus.

The story I wrote is the Three Lands side story my Muse was nudging me about, "The Hidden Father." Chronologically, it fits into the series like this:

* Law Links.
* Death Mask.
* The Hidden Father.
* Blood Vow.
* The Fire Before.

It's unfortunately the case that some stories I write that I really, really like don't attract much attention from readers. (*cough* Spy Hill *cough*) But I hope that "The Hidden Father" attracts an audience when I eventually issue it; I very much like the direction it took.

The problem I'm beginning to possess is how to post my overload of Three Lands fiction. I currently have four novels in the series to post (three of which are already issued as ebooks). Two of the novels are mega-novels, and one can be fairly characterized as super-sized, being the length of a couple of novels. In addition, I need to post five novellas, a novel that's nearly finished, and heaven knows how many Three Lands novels and short fiction will be composed by the end of the year.

And that's just The Three Lands. I'm also trying to get the rest of my Turn-of-the-Century Toughs stories online. I don't know how many words that represents: Half a million? A million? Also, a few stories from my archived series.

There are definite disadvantages to having high word counts. Do any of you folks have suggestions for a smooth manner in which to release all this fic?


Thanks to a series of dental appointments, I spent the first three days of the workweek in the D.C. area, staying overnight with my parents. This allowed me to spend all day Tuesday at the National Museum of American History and the Library of Congress, where I saw nine exhibits, mainly on World War I.

I'd planned to spend Wednesday morning at the National Postal Museum, which also has an exhibit on World War I. Instead, I spent the morning with my father, listening to him talk about his memories of World War II as a young boy ("We couldn't get balloons and bubblegum," he said mournfully), my great-uncle's participation in World War I (he sent home a postcard from Paris), and the participation of my great-great-grandfather (I'm not sure whether I got the number of greats correct) in the American Civil War. Much more informative than any museum exhibits.

Since we were discussing wars, I asked my father why he hadn't been drafted during the Vietnam War. He said, "You were born."


April 2018



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