Friday, June 14, 2019

#goals Boom! Did it! 20k words!

So, I met my goal of 20k total words by Friday at 5:00PM.  I did it on Thursday at 2:00, and Tomorrow is a writing day all day, so I'm excited to make more forward progress.  My goal for next is 27k total, so I'm just sticking with 5k a week for my goal, and letting myself beat it.  Go(al) me!  

Thursday, June 13, 2019

Moral Victories in Writing.

I used to have friends that joked around about moral victories in sports.  The idea is that there aren't moral victories, only wins and losses.  Yet, being a K-State fan we'd always hear about how even though we'd lost five games, we're really 10 points from being undefeated.  In sports, moral victories are useless and laughable.  

However, in writing, I find them quite useful.  Last night, I passed 19,000 words on my manuscript.  This is significant because a) I'm a lazy bum. b) The manuscript I'm reworking was 5,700 words before the revision (I wanted to write the next Magic Treehouse, which was in that range).  I've surpassed three published books that are published and sold through scholastic in my genre (my goal).  c) By end-of-day Friday, I'll have passed several more books, from various other series.  d) There is an almost 15-month-old baby strapped to me most of the time I'm writing.  

All three of the books I've passed thus-far are Goosebumps Series books by R.L. Stine.  I'm definitely not writing that, nor am I competing with Mr. Stine.  However, I feel a bit of pride to have gotten my book into a publishable middle-grade word count before I'm finished with the rewrite.  To tell the truth, I never saw myself expanding it this much.  Hopefully, this tiny moral victory will power me on to finish this thing by mid-July.  I'm on track for 32k+ by the end of the month, and then I'll hit the beta reading and edits hard.  

What moral victories have you used to power you through a writing project?

Monday, June 10, 2019

#goals 20K words by Friday

I made it to 15k words by the end of the week (Sat)!  It was a day slower than I'd hoped for, but little victories win the war, right?  Plus, you try writing with a 14-month-old who just learned to run and climb in the same week.   Anyway, new goal of 20k words by Friday.  Hopefully, I smash that and go past it.  My goal is 40K by mid-July.  Then, leave it to beta-readers to get feedback, It feels good to be in a flow of new writing again.  It's been a while.  Also, of note: When I wrote this manuscript as the next Magic Treehouse, but in space, it was 7k (and garbage).  So, I doubled that.  Perspective.  How's it going out there?  What are your goals?

Tuesday, June 4, 2019

#goals 15k words by the end of the week

I'm back to my first ever manuscript.  Long story, short: It sucked.  I'm fixing it.  It's taking a while.  

Part of the awhile is just getting the courage to do it.  Another part of the awhile is that whenever I get back to it, I have to reread it.  

It feels good putting new content on it.  I feel like I could get done by the end of July, which is my goal.  How's everyone out there doing with their #goals?  What's driving you?  What's holding you back?  Let me know in the comments.

Monday, May 2, 2016

Music to Make Write To

So I haven't posted music I listen to while writing in forever.  Honestly, it's because I wasn't writing for a long time.  The last binge writing fest I had, there was no music since I was at my kid's Tae Kwon Do testing.  But I do still listen.  

My tastes have changed a bit.  Right now I'm cycling through worship music and reggaeton.  Kind of a 7-10 split there, but I found this worship mix that calms me, and I miss the music I had living in Colombia last year.  Anyhow, here are a couple videos to showcase what's been on my playlists.  

Housefires: Rise



Nicky Jam: Travesuras




Disfrutan (enjoy)!

-Chris



Friday, April 29, 2016

EggDrop Review

This week we finally got our first EggDrop subscription box.  EggDrop.us is a subscription box that offers six surprise toys in exchange for $20.  My daughter, Gaby was over one of Jupiter's Moons about it.  Surprise eggs have always been her thing.  Full disclosure, Gaby was given this box as a promotion after contacting the business.  She made a short video for it on her YouTube channel.  

Inside the box:
-Shopkins Collector Card Pack
My kid loves these, and for 98% of the girl population, that's going to be a winner.
-Zootopia Dogtag
This is a great addition and super relevant to what's in right now.  
-Littlest Petshop Fashem Squishie
My kid loves these things.  She's mostly gotten My Little Pony Fashems in the past.
-Funko Batman Keychain
Gaby was digging the color choice.  The lavender brings out Batman's eyes, or um, muscles.  Yeah.  This is a nice addition to the girl's box this month.
-Frozen Surprise Egg
Good idea for younger girls.  For Gaby, it was a little behind the trends and her age.  As far as this figurine goes, she's probably going to Let It Go.
-Mystery Surprise Egg
The idea that she didn't know what was coming from this egg is easily Gaby's best memory from this box.  Sure, it turned out to be a strange little zombie Hello Kitty, but kids buy surprise eggs 25% for the rinky-dink toy and 75% for the experience.

The Highs:
The overall experience is pretty great.  Gaby hugged her box all afternoon before I let her open it.  The logo is cute and inviting.  The toys inside are, with the exception of the frozen figurine, relevant. EggDrop really seems to have bottled some short-term lightning in terms of finding a desirable niche in the expanding subscription box market.  

The Lows:
Did Gaby love all the toys?  You bet!  Did The box have things I couldn't have scoured local stores for?  Not really.  What EggDrop is doing is taking the joy of surprise eggs and adding it to the joy of opening a box full of eggs.  That might not scratch your kid's surprise egg itch for an entire month.  Is that worth $3.33 an item and not being able to pick your six items?  That's up to you.

Monday, April 25, 2016

Got My First Rejection For My New Manuscript!!

This week I've been querying, and of course, that comes with the instant joy of rejection.  I'll be honest though, there were several things that struck me as unusual about this rejection.  First of all, she had reviewed it within three days of submission.  Kudos to her, that's pretty quick.  However, there were some other unusual things within the text.  Behold:


Dear Chris, <normal
Thank you so much for thinking of me for <Manuscript Title Redacted>, which I was happy to see.  <unusual Unfortunately, I'm afraid it's not a good fit for me, so I must pass. <normal  I'm so sorry. <unusual
Wishing you all the best,
Agentface <normal

So here's what strikes me.  I've been rejected a couple times before.  No one mentions they are happy to see something.  Agent time is precious, and it seems like a frivolous sentence.  It could be the form she uses, but it's not something I'm used to seeing.  It also could indicates that she read the MS, which is cool.  A lot of agents don't take the time, so anything indicative of that is positive.  The more agent eyes in front of your work, the better, rejection or no.

Also saying, "I'm so sorry" seems out of place.  It's almost as though they thought about it, and were not 100% on their decision.  Normally "I'm going to pass" suffices and agent is done.  So it made me curious. 

Both of these things could just be nothing.  The agent might use those statements for everyone.  I fully intend to query something else entirely in a week to find out.  However, I'm choosing to read the positive tea leaves on this one and keep plugging away at querying this project with maybe a bit more focused approach in terms of agent preferences.

How about you guys?  Which agent/publisher responses caught your eye? 

-Chris