Sunday, March 31, 2013

A reminder of a writer: John Levitt

I think he's one of the better UF writers even though he's series was way too short.

Here is his books at B&N along with a few other John Levitt-s I couldn't figure out how to get just him.


And his website. The dog is from his novels.


What ever you do read them and then tell him.  :)

Saturday, March 30, 2013

PS update and one change

I managed to finish two chapters.

Chapter two of Two Struggles: had to take out some background and changed a few phrases to how I think my MC would talk. Still not sure if its better but at least it's not as complicated.

And chapter one of Second Career. It's longer which is good and I hope clearer with the five human senses.

I also sent in four stories today. That means I have eight out. Maybe nine Oh it is nine forgot about WotF. So maybe it's ten.

If anyone is interested they can read one of my stories if you want to join Baen's Bar and check out the Baen Universe section.  This story is one of my simple stories. Some of my longer ones are better--I hope.

Baen's Bar

Oh yes someone suggested I make the middle section of my blog wider...I did. I didn't know you could, amazing. And the left side should be a tiny bit less wide.

Friday, March 29, 2013

PS on Easter--Resurrection Day

Speaking of Good Friday which is a part of Easter:

"But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him." King James Version

There's a whole lot that could be said about this but I added this verse because it fits into what I said before.
But in other words God--the Creator demonstrated his Love by Jesus dying for us even though we rejected God. By the blood he shed we are made right with God, for someone had to die for our sin--our rejection of God and His Word.

One more point about the Resurrection and it's importance:
"That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation."King James Version

So if you believe in your heart and say it with your mouth. Righteousness or right standing with God is yours. As if you lived the perfect life and did everything that God wanted you to do.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

PS on last update.

Working on one of those novel revisions more than the other. Almost done with the first chapter. I added quiet a few words, deleted a few, changed a few sentences. Even though I really don't want it to be it might be more for Middle school and high schools boys than the general public. A lot of fighting and strange creatures. But they need good books too.

Working on two WIPs at work

Right now One MC is just getting into a fight with a head high griffin. The other is fighting an orc and might be given a special sword by her new friend-mentor even though she doesn't know about the last. But I'm not sure, I have another character who I thought about being her secret angel teacher but he is also one of the two guys she starts to like. 


One MC found that climbing a tree didn't help to escape the griffin, but she is without realizing it yet, understanding the thing. Other MC was just given a very special sword to help fight that orc. It's not any certain famous swords but it wasn't made for humans.

Also revising a story I wanted to send out this week end but it needs more work and is kinda long. It's my relationship tale that happens to have a vampire, tough female police officer and low powered wizard in it. So next week I will send it out.

And Sunday I did a couple hundred on a new novel. Well, sort of novel. I would whether it be a short story but it might be a long one whenever I get her done. But I'm working on it as a spare when I'm not sure what else to write on. I have another one like that which probably will be a novel.

Today I worked on my two work WIPs around 800 to 1,000 words.

And a couple hundred new words on a story I'm revising at home. I want to send it out this weekend but it needs more work that usual. Extra words, sentences that aren't clear, some are hard to know which character it is about, etc. And it's kinda long. I wrote it at work but it needs more fixing than usual for that too.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Update March 23--forgot to do name change

 I want to say that yeah, I got busy with stories and forgot to change the name here.

As anyone who has read these post knows, if you're new obviously you won't, I enter the Writers of the Future short story contest. There's a link to the side on this blog.  They have four contests each year, Quarters 1 through 4.

I entered Q1 which we just got back the results.

Because of an E-mail address change I didn't get a result. I sent them a note about it but I may have used the wrong E-mail address or it got lost in a clog of E-mails. So no notice.

They have Honorable Mentions--Sliver HMs--Semi-finalist--Finalist and First, second and third place winners. They announced the Finalists  which I am not one of. I don't know if they announce the Simi-s any place. So while possible I could have gotten one of the lower ratings I doubt it. It's my writing after all and no matter how hard I try I'm still stuck half way up a mountain.

I have received three other rejections this week--did get my second personal note from Fantasy and Science Fiction. About five years ago John Joseph Adams gave me a nice note. This time its' from Scot P. and Not So Much--
The MC is named Tony
"I doubt Tony expected the request to defeat an evil wizard after a fine bacon breakfast." 

Finally got started on revising my novels. Worked some on my Two Struggles still having problems with chapter two though. When do I put in info about the MC and where she lives, her background etc?
The NaNo or SC--Now titled "Second Career"-novel is going smooth but yet it will take longer than I had hoped if the rest of it is like the first chapter. 

Might be a PS later

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Update--March 16

Maybe this one should be in green letters...;)

So I finally started working on those two novels I want to get done indie-ized. E-pubbed that is. :)

Earlier I found had this problem:

Drat....and something stronger.

I was going to start revising-using crits from other writers- one of my novels I should have been working on three months ago. I found the original copy but I'm sure I have a version that has a couple of pages already done. Can't find that one. By that time I ran out of time...mostly. 

Maybe tomorrow I can figure out what is going on--could be my memory is playing tricks...

But I found the right copy disguised a crit. I had finished ch 1 and started 2 tonight. 

On person commented on the amount of descriptions and explanations. Yeah, I think they're right even though I have cut down on them.. Now, I cut the description of the apartment my MC lives in. I will cut even more on other details. I knew I was having problems with too much explainations and descriptions on side issues, that why I needed some help with chapters two and three. There are things I want said but trying to figure out where they go an dhow to say them in shorter ways is one of my weak points. But I will get this novel done. Most of it is okay I think but I may need to go over these two chapters some more and more. 


Also finished the first revision of the prologue of my SC novel. The book I did for NaNo in '12. So now comes the hard part. 


This week I sent off another new story to Fantasy and Science Fiction. I hope Stephen or Scott likes it enough to comment on it or send it up to Van Gelder. Evidently he does make comments.

Still have six to ten stories to revise and prepare to send it out. 

I need to keep checking on Analog and Asimov's for both have my old E-mail address as well as Beneath Ceaseless Skies and Daily Science Fiction but those last two don't post updates on each story as Asimov's and Analog does.They give short one word updates on where the story is in the pipeline. 
Not sure about writing any new stories at the moment for I'm concentrating on those two novels, but there is one more I want to do at work.  As well as working on two novel WIPs there.

More later

Easter--Resurrection Day

For those who are new to reading my blog I like to add religious or Christian comments now and again.

I'm usually late but early this time.  :)

Just want to say a few words on Easter or the Resurrection Day. Even though some things have been added to it over the years the main part of this day is still the physical Resurrection of Jesus Christ. It is that gives us hope and validates Christianity. 
As the writer of 1st Corinthians 15: 14, said, “And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain.” (KJB)That makes this event and all it means the most important happening around.  

     Without going into too many details, Jesus’ resurrection means that our sins are forgiven. He died as a sin substitute. The main reason he was born and lived as a man was to die in our place. He taught good things, he healed which the sick loved, he lived a perfect life. It’s a trade our sin--wrong doing--rebellion for His Right Standing with God. 

And as I said it gives us hope we can set our hope in something positive, lasting, solid, and real. Hope for eternal life with God the creator not in the other place of punishment. Plus hope for now that God really does love us and wants to heal our souls and life. 

All of that---forgiveness, a second-and more-chance, a Savour that is alive and Powerful enough to beat death and the grave not to mention our sin, His great love and amazing grace, a place in Heaven with Him---is what we celebrate on Easter or Resurrection Day. 

As I said at the beginning, yes, some stuff, like Bunnies and colored eggs, have been added to the celebration but that is all incidental--little extras and not the main attraction.  

There’s a whole lot more that could be said and many churches will be saying it but these are the basics. If you need to know more ask here or click here for one place to learn church, you can ask  there  

I verse I used is the King James version but if you go Here  you can read it in a lot of different versions.  Different translations and ways of saying the same thing., You might like the way some versions say it better than others.   

Monday, March 11, 2013

My reading- Laura Resnick

I'm reading a new one..decided to put off "The Iron Wyrm", it's not its time yet.

Now I'm reading "Poltergheist"  Yes, that is no typo .

It's the sixth in a light hearted UF-romance series.

By Laura Resnick a very good writer. Love this series even with the romance element. The MC has no magic and is an innocent bystander--at least in the beginning.

I will say though that the continual problems between the MC and her love are grating on me but it's a small side issue-continual-not the whole thing.

Goodie, goodie I get read another one.

Interesting dream

Interesting--I entered a mini fiction contest, 200 words or less. Since I have been doing a bunch of minis twice in the last six months and since a 50 word story received a HM in a different contest I thought I would enter.
I had to do three tries before I got one under 200 words. The first two are just under and just over 500. I put in too many of the five human senses...still have one more attempt to do another mini even though it's too late for the contest.
That's not the interesting part, it's the lead up. 
This is:
 I had a dream about the mini contest last night. 

I read the winning stories--actually I only got to three before I woke. Don't ask me what they were about I don't recall even though I remember actually reading three. 

In the dream they placed each story on a different page. The first one was either 194 or 174 words and was third place or first. The second one I read didn't say, the third one-174 words-confused me because right in the middle of it they put in two lines. Between the lines was a statement that this person had won a life time achievement award-I don't know where he placed in the contest. But he had entered a lot of times. And afterwards I realized that there was more of the story above that announcement, After I read the whole thing I realized why he got a life time award. His story was actually two. Most words were the usual black even though a few were red. The red ones told a different story. It was 12 or so words long.  

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Name changes


I decided to change the name of my blog probably to Musings of a WordSmith.

Probably within the next week, I'm not sure how that will effect your links here. If you have any.

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Musing on Isaac Asimov

         Thought of this at work the other day and decided to type it out for my blog and in directly for Google+.  With a few modifications since then. 

Isaac Asimov seems to be  a strange bird.  When he was alive he was thee top SF writer. I don’t think anyone was even close. He made it as adviser to a TV show--it didn’t last long but I liked it and his Three Robotic Laws were used on a different TV show and his descendant was a Captain of a Starship--he didn’t do much but he was there. I know I love his writing. Now though--since he died--everyone seems to be ignoring him. I hear long time Pros mention their top writers and he’s never on the list or they talk about the Masters and again he isn’t listed. I should say about that last; usually the Masters are before Asimov’s time so that may not be a good comparison.  

I still believe he was a master storyteller.  Since I thought though this I decided it’s time to reread his stories. I love his fusion of SF and Mystery. 

Back to my Musing of Asimov. In a discussion of him online, one person didn’t like him because he used just one plot. I couldn’t recall enough of Asimov’s stories so wasn’t sure if that person was correct but I didn’t care. Asimov did an excellent job on that one plot. One other person thought the same. One thing that is ironic though is his Foundation series. I think it is his most popular series but it’s about the only one of his SF books I haven’t read. It just doesn’t excite me for some reason. 

I still would be like him in writing--not in other areas. He wrote in different genres: SF Mystery and a couple of others I think. Seems like there was a bunch but I can only think of two--three counting his Bible Commentary--Oh, four he wrote science books too. 
He didn’t do Fantasy-which disappoints me he would have been good there too--no Westerns and I don’t recall any gen fic. 

He did a couple of short short story series, two I really like and wished he did a bunch more in both. One involved a Professor who was afraid to travel, he lived on the grounds of the University he taught at. He didn’t want to travel via Matter Transportation either. Yeah, in one story he was involved in its invention.

Even though I haven’t watched it for I know the ending, I rejoiced when his “Bicentennial Man” was made into a movie.  His “Nightfall” has been made into a movie also--I saw it once in a video store but it’s very old evidently and not being made anymore.  There is “I, Robot” too but as far as I can recall it’s doesn’t keep to the book. I need to reread it though to make sure. 

One more thing I got what may be the last anthology of his works--new works anyway--”Gold”, not only for his stories but the essays on writing that was(were?) included. But they were not about writing in general, instead they were on his writing. A couple, like how he got ideas, could be of use for new writers but I was hoping for more how-tos. Still they were interesting.

Not sure when I will get to rereading his stories and maybe some time. I can probably buy them on my Nook. Therefore I will have them without having to search for them in hard paper. 

A PS  here is a link to the Isaac Asimov web page. It lists more mysteries than I knew about. And I learned a couple of things either I forgot or didn't about him.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

My reading "The Iron Wyrm Affair"

I'm reading two.

I restarted reading the last WotF anthology and started "The Iron Wyrm Affair" by Lilith Saintcrow ---her name fits the genre. 

It is a fusion of steampunk and Urban Fantasy. Not bad so far. The first chapter has a great action scene and explains some of what is going on. I little bit heavy on the steampunk devices for me but still not bad. It is an interesting world Saintcrow has come up with. I do want to learn more about it. 

I've read the Rogue Wizard series by K. E. Mills which also is Steampunk-UF but in that case it was more UF this one has more steampunk. 

But we shall see how it goes, I expect  that I will buy the next one in the series.  

March 3 update-Instruction

Been meaning to type this out and post if for a week or so. That means, besides being busy writing and on a side not lazy and forgetful, I may have forgotten items I wanted to include which means that there could be a PS again. 

    So I’ve been working short stories and short stories and short stories not to mention a  few shortees. 

     Oh, yes also done a bunch of critiques. Mostly for other WotF writers. But one for and one for another contest--more on that later.

    I am revising a story I wrote at the very least six months ago--could be closer to a year. This one is a major revision for I’ve learned a few things since I wrote. So I’m putting in more sensory description, using all five of the human senses, and more emotional angst for the MC and a try-fail cycle.  For those who may not know yet the last is when the hero or MC of a story has to try to fix something-work something out-figure out clues. David over at WotF--I still forget his official title but he is the first reader judge there, you have to get by him to make it the final judges-likes try-fail cycles. He has stated he wants three--depending on the length. This story isn’t for them but Try-Fail is something for all fiction. There needs be at least one in every story. Three I believe would be the limit even though a novelette-novella could have more---again I believe.   The Five human senses are another writing device for all fiction. David says they are good for Show and setting. Dean Wesley Smith and Kristine Kathryn Rusch--Dean’s wife and award winning writer--both say that with all five sense every two pages you do not need show.  That’s because Show will show up if you describe all five senses. (I’ve said this before and will probably say it again) I’m sure you can over do it especially if you keep jamming them all in one short paragraph like I seem to do at times. 

I’ve finished stories for three of the four openings Dean said was great during a Online Workshop--one of those three will be my story for Quarter Three of WotF. I’m almost done with the fourth story. That one took more time. Dean advised me to “crash” more than one type of story together. Makes it more interesting that way. I’ve done that before without really thinking about it. This idea is probably what he meant. I took some time though to try to come up with a different idea--after all werewolf relationships with non-wolves have been explored in many stories. I hope mine emphases the relationship between a husband and wife in a troubled marriage more than the ‘wolf and Mage elements. They should be background not the main elements if I do the story right. 

One more thing about these stories. I think I’ve said this before but doesn’t hurt to repeat especially if I get any new readers. Dean wanted us to use all five senses in the first 13 lines of the each opening. Taste is usually hard but evidently I did it right in the werewolf story. And in this instants he was right the Senses do add setting and Show. 

Now it’s later--as in the mini story contest I reference earlier. Someone on the WotF forums mentioned a contest for mini stories. No more than 200 words. Egads, that is not easy but I’ve already played around with minis so I’m kinda of used to it. (I may end up putting one to three of them on that side page for my stories since there are few markets for stories that short). It took me three tries to keep the story under 200. The first one ended up 480 some and the second came in at 513 or so. One reason they came in so long is that I wanted to put in the five senses but you can’t do that in 200 words. I settled for a couple of them. I need to revise it quickly and send it in for the deadline is very soon. Oh, it’s a Canadian magazine so they will have three Canadians winners and two nonCanadian. Don’t know if they do any HMs.  

And I’ve started the last revision of Q2 story for WotF. Not that much real revsioning-I did move half a page further into the story-it’s mostly nitpicking. 

Oh, I am working on one story at work and I think that is all I have planned for the moment...I NEED to get to revising two novels. So-not counting the two stories for WotF and the mini contest and any new stories I plan to send out I will not be doing any new stories at home for a month or three. I Hope! I keep distracting myself on other writing. My Q3 story is done so I don’t have to worry about that.

I’m praying to sell one or two stories for a thousand dollars--that will let me tithe off of it, take another online workshop and take a week off from work. I think they will let me do that now. Later probably not. Or if not a week than three days. I want the time to work on two maybe three novel revisions.