Sunday Circle

The Sunday Circle: What Are You Working On This Week?

Sunday Circle Banner

The Sunday Circle is the weekly check-in where I ask the creative-types who follow this blog to weigh in about their goals, inspirations, and challenges for the coming week. The logic behind it can be found here. Want to be involved? It’s easy – just answer three questions in the comments or on your own blog (with a link in the comments here, so that everyone can find them).

After that, throw some thoughts around about other people’s projects, ask questions if you’re so inclined. Be supportive above all.

Then show up again next Sunday when the circle updates next, letting us know how you did on your weekly project and what you’ve got coming down the pipe in the coming week (if you’d like to part of the circle, without subscribing to the rest of the blog, you can sign-up for reminders via email here).

MY CHECK-IN

What am I working on this week?

The white-boards are basically running my life at the moment, keeping me focused on shifting priorities. I’ve got an application going in Tuesday and my thesis synopsis going in Friday, but I also want to get some short fiction moving again. Top of the list is a rewrite of a story that kinda started out as a version of Hills Like White Elephants on Mars, took a left turn through Film Noir, and now seems to be heading somewhere else entire.

What’s inspiring me this week?

Abstract, the Netflix documentary series about design and designers. 40 minutes at a time, with an individual designer as the subject paired with a different documentary director, with results that range from the brilliant (the episodes of illustration, architecture, photography, and typography) to the interesting (the episode about Nike shoe designer Tinker Hatfield) to the blah (the episode about Chrysler and car design), but it’s always got something in the episode you can take away as a creative.

And, honestly, if you can watch the episode about Bjarke Ingels without wanting to move into his figure eight apartment complex (or, at least, write a story set there), you are doing far, far better than I am.

What part of my project an I avoiding?

I’ve got two papers that need to be summarised for the PhD, which I’ve been putting off because they’re dense and complex and not as much fun as some of the other theory I’ve been reading. I really need to set aside a couple of hours to struggle with stuff that’s going to be much harder to understand and get it clear in my head.

The Sunday Circle: What Are You Working On This Week?

Sunday Circle Banner

The Sunday Circle is the weekly check-in where I ask the creative-types who follow this blog to weigh in about their goals, inspirations, and challenges for the coming week. The logic behind it can be found here. Want to be involved? It’s easy – just answer three questions in the comments or on your own blog (with a link in the comments here, so that everyone can find them).

After that, throw some thoughts around about other people’s projects, ask questions if you’re so inclined. Be supportive above all.

Then show up again next Sunday when the circle updates next, letting us know how you did on your weekly project and what you’ve got coming down the pipe in the coming week (if you’d like to part of the circle, without subscribing to the rest of the blog, you can sign-up for reminders via email here).

MY CHECK-IN

What am I working on this week?

I’m sent a story out to beta last week and got comments back, so my main goals this week are revising the story draft and getting my thesis synopsis together ahead of a meeting with my supervisor this Friday (and submitting it for assessment a week after that).

What’s inspiring me this week?

Man, so much theory and critical work could get slot right now, but let’s go with John Thompson’s Merchants of Culture. I’m barely a third of the way through Thompson’s examination of the publishing industry, but his break-down of the types of capital at work in publishing immediately got me thinking about how useful it would have been two or three years ago when I wanted to try and explain those concepts in classes. There is a strong possibility there will be blog posts in the next few weeks based upon my reading.

What part of my project an I avoiding?

Finally feel like I got a grip on everything over the last week, so I’m finally looking at the content of what I’m doing instead of my general need to be doing it in this section. In this case, I’ve got a short story revision that I’ve been doing for the last few days that hit a stall point when I realised that sitting down and revising it further would both be a) time-consumingly challenging to do, and b) increasingly likely to send it spiralling out past a usable word count where I can get the thing published. I’ve been reluctant to go back to it for about 48 hours now, and I’ll probably let it slide for much longer if I don’t actually think through those two problems.

The Sunday Circle: What Are You Working On This Week?

Sunday Circle Banner

The Sunday Circle is the weekly check-in where I ask the creative-types who follow this blog to weigh in about their goals, inspirations, and challenges for the coming week. The logic behind it can be found here. Want to be involved? It’s easy – just answer three questions in the comments or on your own blog (with a link in the comments here, so that everyone can find them).

After that, throw some thoughts around about other people’s projects, ask questions if you’re so inclined. Be supportive above all.

Then show up again next Sunday when the circle updates next, letting us know how you did on your weekly project and what you’ve got coming down the pipe in the coming week (if you’d like to part of the circle, without subscribing to the rest of the blog, you can sign-up for reminders via email here).

MY CHECK-IN

What am I working on this week?

I’m working on short story that’s a slightly off-kilter portal fantasy where kids are sent to another world for the holidays. Having just made the very on-the-nose The Last Battle reference that will probably not survive to the final draft, I finally get to the bit where I get to engage in some fun secondary world hi-jinx.

What’s inspiring me this week?

So I wanted Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and– Nope. Can’t even finish that sentence as a joke. My dislike of Snyder films remains strong, even if I’m pretty sure I had a minor epiphany about putting together effective bad guys while comparing Jesse Eisenberg’s Lex Luthor to Hans Gruber in Die Hard.

What’s really interested me this week has been Riverdale TV series, based on the Archie comics. There’s been some incredibly weird re-interpretations of the Archie gang in the comics over the last few years, most of which have paid off really well, so it’s not really surprising this continues that trend. It’s high melodrama, as you’d expect, but the entire thing has been filtered through Twin Peaks and five years of internet commentary on intersectionality and representation.

What part of my project an I avoiding?

The portal fantasy is still more premise than plot, so I’ll need to figure out some deeper narrative issues to work through now that the introductory bits and voice are starting to come together. Still haven’t quite got my routine down either, what with everything getting rescheduled and shifted around last week, so I still need to really sit down and lock down a schedule for when writing will happen.

The Sunday Circle: What Are You Working On This Week?

Sunday Circle Banner

The Sunday Circle is the weekly check-in where I ask the creative-types who follow this blog to weigh in about their goals, inspirations, and challenges for the coming week. The logic behind it can be found here. Want to be involved? It’s easy – just answer three questions in the comments or on your own blog (with a link in the comments here, so that everyone can find them).

After that, throw some thoughts around about other people’s projects, ask questions if you’re so inclined. Be supportive above all.

Then show up again next Sunday when the circle updates next, letting us know how you did on your weekly project and what you’ve got coming down the pipe in the coming week (if you’d like to part of the circle, without subscribing to the rest of the blog, you can sign-up for reminders via email here).

MY CHECK-IN

What am I working on this week?

With my day-job contract finished up I am basically back in writing-land. I’ve got a short-story to redraft and some notes for one that’s following it, which should keep me busy as I get back into the swing of things.

What’s inspiring me this week?

So I basically inhaled the first season of Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries in the space of twenty-four hours, which I’ve been meaning to do for ages and bumped up the viewing list after Theodora Goss’s post about Miss Fisher and the Female Gaze. It’s an extraordinarily charming show, but also incredibly clever, and I am looking forward to tracking down all the books now as part of PhD research.

What part of my project an I avoiding?

I’ve been letting planning slip for a few weeks now, while finishing off the day-job contract. Ironically, I’ve been doing this while re-reading Work Clean, which has large chunks about putting planning in the centre of your process rather than treating it as a time-consuming adjunct, so I am both avoiding like crazy and increasingly aware how useful actually sucking it up and doing the planning will probably be..

The Sunday Circle: What Are You Working On This Week?

Sunday Circle Banner

The Sunday Circle is the weekly check-in where I ask the creative-types who follow this blog to weigh in about their goals, inspirations, and challenges for the coming week. The logic behind it can be found here. Want to be involved? It’s easy – just answer three questions in the comments or on your own blog (with a link in the comments here, so that everyone can find them).

After that, throw some thoughts around about other people’s projects, ask questions if you’re so inclined. Be supportive above all.

Then show up again next Sunday when the circle updates next, letting us know how you did on your weekly project and what you’ve got coming down the pipe in the coming week (if you’d like to part of the circle, without subscribing to the rest of the blog, you can sign-up for reminders via email here).

MY CHECK-IN

What am I working on this week?

Not a lot of writing for me in the coming week, as I’ll be wrapping up my blogging gig, getting back into the rhythm of GenreCon now I’m bac at QWC one day a week, and making sure I’ve got everything I need to get organised ahead of the PhD kicking off on January 31.

What’s inspiring me this week?

I’m compiling a list of stories set in the early nineteen hundreds as research for a coming project, which has led me back to to a re-watch Penny Dreadful and Luc Besson’s adaptation of The Extraordinary Adventures of Adele Blanc-sec.

Part of what I’m looking at is the use of the time period as the basis for SF/Fantasy works, without necessarily drifting towards Steampunk. The Penny Dreadful episodes do a great job with this – the most overt signs of industrialisation lie in Caliban’s backstory.

What part of my project an I avoiding?

I’ve got a checklist and seven different documents to read ahead of my PhD commencement meeting on the 31st, which covers all sorts of exciting topics like Occupational Health and Safety during the degree, and the internet code of conduct. Probably not the most arduous job of the week, given how much time it’s likely to take up, but I’ve been avoid it for a week now.

 

The Sunday Circle: What Are You Working On This Week?

Sunday Circle Banner

The Sunday Circle is the weekly check-in where I ask the creative-types who follow this blog to weigh in about their goals, inspirations, and challenges for the coming week. The logic behind it can be found here. Want to be involved? It’s easy – just answer three questions in the comments or on your own blog (with a link in the comments here, so that everyone can find them).

After that, throw some thoughts around about other people’s projects, ask questions if you’re so inclined. Be supportive above all.

Then show up again next Sunday when the circle updates next, letting us know how you did on your weekly project and what you’ve got coming down the pipe in the coming week (if you’d like to part of the circle, without subscribing to the rest of the blog, you can sign-up for reminders via email here).

MY CHECK-IN

What am I working on this week?

I start heading into QWC once a week to work on GenreCon this week, in addition to doing my last full week of shifts at the Queensland Health gig and catching up with friends through most of Monday, so I’m actually doing very little creative work in the next seven days. A little short story tinkering will probably take place, but mostly I’m focused on rethinking most of my planning systems to account for the fact that I’ll be working from home a awful after January 31. This brings with it an incredibly high potential for procrastination, and I’d really like to lock down any habits that contribute to that and nip them in the bud.

What’s inspiring me this week?

I picked up a copy of Elmore Leonard’s Fire in the Hole and Other Stories, which is best-known these days for including the titular novelette that eventually became the TV show, Justified. I’m a fan of Leonard’s novels – he’s an great stylists who has a real knack for character and dialogue – but they kinda pale in comparison to what he does at shorter word counts.

What’s really interesting is watching…well, not a formula, but a definite recurring motif in terms of the way he likes to end things…get rolled out alongside an ironic final statement in story after story, to the point where you can predict it happening. It should be incredibly irritating, but it’s become the thing that I really enjoyed looking for.

What part of my project an I avoiding?

I’m intentionally avoiding writing projects for the next week, but I’ve been unintentionally avoiding a bunch of writing-adjacent work like signing contracts and processing email. I really should set aside a few hours to clear the decks before Friday.

The Sunday Circle: What Are You Working On This Week?

Sunday Circle Banner

The Sunday Circle is the weekly check-in where I ask the creative-types who follow this blog to weigh in about their goals, inspirations, and challenges for the coming week. The logic behind it can be found here. Want to be involved? It’s easy – just answer three questions in the comments or on your own blog (with a link in the comments here, so that everyone can find them).

After that, throw some thoughts around about other people’s projects, ask questions if you’re so inclined. Be supportive above all.

Then show up again next Sunday when the circle updates next, letting us know how you did on your weekly project and what you’ve got coming down the pipe in the coming week (if you’d like to part of the circle, without subscribing to the rest of the blog, you can sign-up for reminders via email here).

MY CHECK-IN

What am I working on this week?

Finished a story draft last week, so the bulk of this week is devoted to revision and trying to get it into a readable form

What’s inspiring me this week?

The History of the Devil by William Woods, which is not quite the book I expected it to be when I picked it up on a discount table at my local second-hand bookstore a few year backs. Much of it isn’t really looking at the Devil at all, but the shift from a hunter-gatherer society to agrarian society and how that’s reflected in the beliefs. Incredibly interesting book, and I keep making notes that will probably be short stories one day.

What part of my project an I avoiding?

Part of rewriting the story has involved layering in some new layers on the story, which in turn means that I need to start figuring out what the new ending. Still a couple of ways that it could go, but I need to pick one and build towards it.

The Sunday Circle: What Are You Working On This Week?

Sunday Circle Banner

The Sunday Circle is the weekly check-in where I ask the creative-types who follow this blog to weigh in about their goals, inspirations, and challenges for the coming week. The logic behind it can be found here. Want to be involved? It’s easy – just answer three questions in the comments or on your own blog (with a link in the comments here, so that everyone can find them).

After that, throw some thoughts around about other people’s projects, ask questions if you’re so inclined. Be supportive above all.

Then show up again next Sunday when the circle updates next, letting us know how you did on your weekly project and what you’ve got coming down the pipe in the coming week (if you’d like to part of the circle, without subscribing to the rest of the blog, you can sign-up for reminders via email here).

MY CHECK-IN

What am I working on this week?

Well, first day of 2017 and its time for me to finish my two weeks of relative holiday and get back to writing. On the to-do list this week: three blog posts, one short story, one chapter on Float (which will also mean spending some quality time re-reading the project and figuring out where I’m up to after a long break).

What’s inspiring me this week?

I’ve leaned heavily on the cultural consumption over the last week, finishing off movies and TV shows I’d half-watched and then left for a later date. The most interesting of them was 20,000 Days on Earth, which is billed as a documentary about Nick Cave and his work, but is probably closer to the documentary equivalent of Creative Non-Fiction.

There is a lot of artifice in the presentation, giving it a really strong visual style and approach, and it doesn’t try to hide the fact that things have been staged in order to generate specific effects. The weird thing is that it kinda works, partially because it’s Nick Cave and his work has always been touched by a streak of pompous melodrama, partially because the documentary makes it very clear that it’s got its own take on the idea of documenting that’s willing to be metaphoric and isn’t necessarily based on realism.

Not a great film, but an interesting one for that reason and I’ve been pondering it on and off.

What part of my project an I avoiding?

I really need to sit down and do my quarterly, monthly, and weekly plans at the moment, in addition to setting up the white board with hour tracking. My rhythm for this is all off thanks to the holidays, and in particular the fact that all my regular breakfast places are shut down for the next two weeks and my habit of planning over coffee isn’t quite coming together.

The Sunday Circle: What Are You Working On This Week?

Sunday Circle Banner

The Sunday Circle is the weekly check-in where I ask the creative-types who follow this blog to weigh in about their goals, inspirations, and challenges for the coming week. The logic behind it can be found here. Want to be involved? It’s easy – just answer three questions in the comments or on your own blog (with a link in the comments here, so that everyone can find them).

After that, throw some thoughts around about other people’s projects, ask questions if you’re so inclined. Be supportive above all.

Then show up again next Sunday when the circle updates next, letting us know how you did on your weekly project and what you’ve got coming down the pipe in the coming week (if you’d like to part of the circle, without subscribing to the rest of the blog, you can sign-up for reminders via email here).

MY CHECK-IN

Doing this lightning fast this week, because…well, Christmas. Hope everyone is having a great day, and getting the chance to celebrate it in a manner that befits their personal beliefs.

What am I working on this week?

Continuing my end-of-year re-charge with books, television, and movies with a little short fiction around the edges.

What’s inspiring me this week?

I’m a big spoiled for choice given how much narrative I’ve consumed in the last seven days, but after finally catching up with the second season of Supergirl it’s probably a winner. A very different show than it had been on its previous network, and some of the things that have changed are disapoiting, but they things the show has gained from the shift seem to be much bigger.

What part of my project an I avoiding?

I’ve got a friends story to read and provide feedback on, that I haven’t had a chance to do yet. Really need to look at squeezing in a little work on that over the next day or so.

The Sunday Circle: What Are You Working On This Week?

Sunday Circle Banner

The Sunday Circle is the weekly check-in where I ask the creative-types who follow this blog to weigh in about their goals, inspirations, and challenges for the coming week. The logic behind it can be found here. Want to be involved? It’s easy – just answer three questions in the comments or on your own blog (with a link in the comments here, so that everyone can find them).

After that, throw some thoughts around about other people’s projects, ask questions if you’re so inclined. Be supportive above all.

Then show up again next Sunday when the circle updates next, letting us know how you did on your weekly project and what you’ve got coming down the pipe in the coming week (if you’d like to part of the circle, without subscribing to the rest of the blog, you can sign-up for reminders via email here).

MY CHECK-IN

What am I working on this week?

My goal for the coming week is to have a short story about spirit photography finished by Christmas and the next instalment of What Writers Ought to Know About Die Hard ready for the New Year, but they are very low-key target. Mostly, I plan on using the coming week to refill the well a little when it comes to creative work. I’ve got a small stack of books to read, and a small pile of movies to watch, and a notebook just waiting for the annotations to begin.

What’s inspiring me this week?

I’ve been reading Cal Newport’s So Good They Can’t Ignore You: Why Skills Trump Passion in the Quest for Work You Love and its an incredible primer on how to build a career based in on creative industries, without overtly being focused on it. It may well be added to the list of recommended reading I suggest every writer do before the start out.

I’ll admit there’s nothing revolutionary going on in the book, but it gives language and a framework to what can be a hard thing to explain to newer writers: the acquisition of career capital through diligent, good work that can eventually be transformed into the kind of career freedom that draws people to the arts. Teaching writing frequently means people are trying to skip to the latter, dreaming of the first book becoming a best-seller, and Newport traces case-study after case-study through various industries that shows why this isn’t a viable approach.

What part of my project an I avoiding?

It’s been eighteen months since the last Die Hard instalment here on the blog, so I’ve been avoiding that post like the plague for a very long time. Trying to remember that I don’t have to write all of it at the same time, and it’s perfectly viable to just take one bite of the elephant, but slow progress is not my jam when it comes to blogging.

It doesn’t help that the second half of the second act, which is where we’re up to, is probably the least interesting part of story structure and there’s not a lot of good resources for fleshing out how I talk about it.