Projects Du Jour

It’s been a while since I talked about up-coming projects on the blog. Partially this is because there weren’t many upcoming projects over the last two years. Partially this is because I’ve become more reclusive in my old age, unwilling to throw things out there until they’re more-or-less done.

I write slow, you see, and occasionally it struck me as faintly absurd that I’d mention writing a short story and it’d be another two years before I finished it. Longer, in the case of some projects, since we do not talk about the novel (or, for that matter, the third Aster novella, or at least one story that people occasionally ask me about that I still haven’t got ’round to finishing).

It’s not that these things go away – I still have all of them in my active projects folder.

I’m just, you know, slow. Today, at write club, I did some work on a story I started in 2007. Two of them, actually, and one is dangerously close to being finished.

On one hand, that’s kinda crazy. On the other, it gives me the kind of boost that only really comes from knowing that shit gets done eventually, so I’m going to tempt fate a little and throw out some details about the shape of my writing to-do list.

Here’s the first thing I should point out: somewhere along the line, shit got busy again.

Stories at the SIT DOWN AND WRITE THE FINAL DRAFT, GODDAMMIT Stage

  • Cracks (Working Title) – a story I kicked off as part of this project last year, which is the first of them to hit the nearly completed stage. I won’t give anything away at this point, since I’m largely planning surprising people with these, but it’s getting close to being done.
  • Cold Ghosts (Working Title-ish) – see above. Despite it’s name, it’s not really a ghost story. Or, depending on the way you look at it, really spec fic. It may also be the first true story I’ve ever written.
  • The Seventeen Executions of Signor Don Vashta – so close to being done I can taste it. It’s entirely possible this will be the story draft I take to Adelaide with me to work on while I’m away for a week, and if I don’t have it out in submission-land by the end of March, someone should probably mock me.
  • Today, Yesterday, Tomorrow (Working Title. Ish) – weird, slipstreamy story that, like most of my weird slipstreamy stories, needs a final going-over to make sure that it’s actually telling the story it’s meant to be telling rather than meandering off into the distance.
  • On Meeting an Ex-Girlfriend for Drinks at the Hotel (Something) Bar (Working Title) – In the history of my writing, there has only really been four stories I hesitated to send to beta readers. Two of those have since seen the light of day, one never got finished ’cause I couldn’t reconcile myself with the subtext it offered, and this was the forth. My trusted beta-readers were, oddly, not bothered by any of the things I expected to bother people. They were, however, bothered by a bunch of other problems they identified in the work. Which shows what I know, really.
  • Dead Man’s Curve (Working Title) – One that I’ve been living with for six years, and still kinda like, but can’t quite find an ending that works. Recently revisited it and tried something else, which may-or-may not work.

Stories at the FINISH THE FIRST DRAFT, DAMMIT, stage

  • Jimmy Locke and the Great Dane (Working Title) – a story about dragons and teen rebellion.
  • Fishhooks – the first overt horror story I’ve tried to write in years, which is starting to remind me why I gave up on overt horror stories. Fortunately, I’m stubborn. THE STORY WILL NOT DEFEAT ME.
  • Flying Saucer Story (Working Title) – A few years ago I thought of a title. For a long time, I didn’t have the story. So I took the title away and, suddenly, the story started to work. Hopefully the title will still fit when I’m done.
  • Glitter Boy (Working Title) – ‘Cause when someone does an open call for an anthology of stories about glam rock, I’ll give up hours of sleep in order to try and get something done.
  • The Satyr Next Door (Working Title) – ‘Cause I should never read about Satyrs while listening to Guns ‘n’ Roses, you know?

Projects in the Queue, but at the QUIETLY WAITING THEIR DAMN TURN stage

  • Altered – this one’s kind of a joy, ’cause it’s not really my project. My friend Kevin, whose been steadily forging a voice-artist career, emailed me and asked if I’d be interested in working on a project he’s been putting together. My role, at this point, is bouncing ideas back and forth while Kevin does some prep work, but I foresee a time when this will become one of my primary writing projects for the year.
  • Secret Project Pitch – Technically not waiting it’s turn, since I’m hoping to get this together and mailed off to the editor who asked me about it before I head to Adelaide in a week, but at the moment it’s a project in the speculative phase that largely involves playing some pretty serious what if. It does involve revisiting an old project of mine, which I’d been meaning to revisit ’cause I wasn’t entirely happy with the execution and thought I could do it better now. And, for the record, it’s not:
  • Claw (AKA Aster Novella 3) It’s been…crap, three years since I was originally going to write this? Admittedly they were a crazy, chaotic three years, and it’s fair to say that for the vast majority of that time, my confidence was pretty shot when it came to writing.  Good excuses are still excuses, though, and I owe Aster an ending, at the very least.

Other Things that Need Writing

  • One Blog Guest Post
  • One Author Interview (Honestly, I’m kinda terrible at these)
  • 2013 article series for WQ (9 remaining)
  • Interview Questions and Panel Preparation for Coflux in April

There’s more, of course – there’s a whole lot of stories incubating in a folder on my computer, waiting for me to start moving some of the existing projects into the submission queue since I try not to have my attention divided between too many active projects.

I’m hoping – fingers crossed – that the above represents about three to six months work. It’s hard to be sure, since my process is all over the shop at the moment, but it feels about right to me given all the travel I’ve got coming up. I may be wrong, and I’ll be okay with that, but seeing how long all this takes should give me a gauge for planing the second half of the year.

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