Kevin

21-Day Challenge: Day 6

Today was awesome and productive for me. I hope your day was just as good! I slept in a bit, got up at 9am. I showered and made coffee. Then I went and played on the internet a little, checking messages and reading email. By about 11am I was already cracking in on the story, getting in my first sprints. I took a break for lunch, then back to work again. Sprint – go cruise the forums for a bit – sprint again. Good stuff. About 3pm I was sitting at a little over 3k words, and went to take …

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21-Day Novel: Day 5

Today and yesterday were serious tests of the whole “Coffee Break Novelist” theory of writing. When I wrote that book, the tl;dr of the idea (although of course I think it IS worth reading!) was that writing ISN’T something that requires huge blocks of time to accomplish. You can slip bits of writing in between the rest of your life and be a productive novelist. Even a highly productive one. Chris Fox – the inspiration for the whole 21-day novel challenge – might be a full-time writer now. But he wasn’t always. He used to slip his writing in during …

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21-Day Novel: Day 4

Day 4 was one of those days that was all about “writing the novel you want in the time you have”, folks. Today I really WAS a “Coffee Break Novelist”. I was up a few minutes after 6am. Got dressed, made coffee, grabbed a Kind bar and was off to work. At work at 7am, and left a few minutes before midnight. It was a LONG day. I knew going into this challenge that getting any words in on Thursdays was going to be tough, which is why when I did my daily plan I set the word goal for …

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21-Day Novel Day 3: The myth of the first draft

Theme music for the day: Avatar (go James Horner!) Word count for today: 6370 words in roughly three hours of typing (not including breaks between sprints). No dictation today. I didn’t really get going until almost 11, and then spent several hours doing sprint – break – sprint – break. The trick, of course, is to keep the sprints longer and the breaks shorter. It’s something I am still working on…! I write about 700-800 words in a 20-25 minute sprint. In theory, if I could get in two such sprints an hour and keep it up for four hours …

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21-Day Novel: Day 2

Today began with a long series of frustrations. I’m trying to learn to use Dragon Dictate (for Mac) as I go here. My words per hour (WPH) on Dragon have only been about 1400-1600 so far, or about 450-550 words per 20 minute sprint. Those are CLEAN words though – I have been dictating into my Macbook, so I clean up the text as I go. It’s still much slower than I type, which is about 2000 WPH, sometimes as high as 2500 WPH (in 20-30 minute sprints). But I am working on it. If I can get clean Dragon …

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21-Day Novel: Day 1

I knew today was going to be a slow start, and – no shock – it was. I’ve only finished 2000 words so far today. Mondays are my “kids day” – the day my children and I spend hanging out and having fun. Today consisted of: going with the kids to look at my new apartment together; playing with them in the playground down the street from the new apartment; lunch and Supergirl episodes (the twin girls, both 9, especially adore the show); then an afternoon of D&D with them. Yup, raising them right: outdoor play, superheroes, and fantasy roleplay! …

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21 Day Novel Challenge

I know this guy. His name is Chris Fox. Chris has written some good books – both fiction and nonfiction. His nonfiction is about…drumroll…fiction writing, and his stuff is really good. Chris published a couple of books on writing which have been somewhat controversial – one called 5000 Words Per Hour, and the more recent release Write to Market. He took some heat for the first one because it suggests ways that writers can be more productive, building up their speed and writing new work more swiftly. He’s being questioned on the second because it suggests learning what readers enjoy …

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New Books! The “Raven’s Heart” series

It’s been a busy year so far. I’ve had three new titles published in the last two months. Each one is a novella, continuing a story set in the same universe as the Ryan Blackwell novels. These stories are about the adventures of Raven – a young woman living in Boston who runs into the darker side of the supernatural. Unlike Ryan, Raven doesn’t have any magic of her own to defend herself. She uses guts, determination, and more than a little luck to get through. The first book is Stolen Light Darkness Raven didn’t know that the pools of …

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Setting Goals for 2016

Every December for a few years now I’ve done a post looking back at last year’s goals, and how well I did in achieving them. Then I set out a new set of goals for the coming year. Over the years I’ve done this, those goals have changed some. They’ve been shaped by my experiences, and by the things I’ve done. Sometimes I’ve succeeded. Sometimes I’ve failed. Sometimes I’ve “failed to success”, which means I set goals which were high enough that I could not quite make them but still feel good about the overall progress. When I set my …

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Writing Life: Priorities

I saw an interesting article today, and it inspired a few thoughts of my own. Kris Rusch wrote a blog article in her Business Musings series. She put those essays out weekly, each a commentary of some sort about the business of writing. This one was called “Whining”. It’s totally worth reading, but here’s the TL;DR version: Writers often complain that they have “no time to write” in today’s world. They blame the lack of time on having to do promotion, social media, blog tours, work on getting covers, and myriad other things. Kris outlines some really basic math showing that …

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