June Wrap-Up & July Goals

book 5 outlineEvery once in a while, I’m totally allowed to have a month where I not only complete EVERYTHING on my list of goals, but also exceed it! (Mostly because sometimes I forget things when I’m writing up the list of goals, but I’m going to take the win anyway.)

June Wrap-Up

  • Steel Time was officially submitted to my editor this month! (Wow, it already feels like it was ages ago.) The LEGO Snowspeeder was completed in celebration.
  • The epic Steel Blood blog tour has been coordinated and scheduled, barring a final confirmation for one stop (he knows who he is). Events will kick off on Monday, July 17 and go non-stop until July 30. I’m excited to share this book with everyone in so many cool ways (guest posts, character interviews, author interviews, and excerpts).
  • And this past weekend (which was technically July) (shhhh), I finally completed the scene-by-scene outline of book 5! I think I’ve settled on the name Steel Shadows for this one.

And for the stuff I totally forgot to put on my list:

June Book Reviews

June Speculative Chic Contributions

July Goals

  1. It’s book writing season at Casa Siamese again! My goal this month is 15k words on Steel Shadows.
  2. Write the posts for and pull off the epic Steel Blood blog tour.
  3. Organize and host some sort of local launch party for Steel Blood.

See, it freaks me out now when my goals list is so short. But I’ve checked my calendar, and I’m not traveling until August. So maybe this really is all I have to do.

Trust me, I’m not complaining!


Currently reading: Nevermore (Supernatural #1) by Keith R. A. DeCandido

Currently writing: 0/15k words

Special Mid-Month Update!

Snowspeeder topI come bearing excellent news! But first, a little bit of background.

After Steel Victory was accepted for publication and I received my publisher’s blessing to create a series with that world, I gave myself a goal. The next book in the series would be delivered to my editor by the time the previous novel was published.

Steel Empires book 2, Steel Magic, was delivered less than a month after Steel Victory came out. Book 3, Steel Blood, was also delivered less than a month after Steel Magic was officially released. Not too bad, and it certainly avoided major time crunches later, but still not technically meeting the goal.

Last Saturday, June 3, in the early afternoon, I emailed a solid draft of Steel Empires book 4, Steel Time, to my editor. Steel Blood doesn’t come out until July 19.

I feel like a rock star.

In celebration, I got to indulge in my other recent passion. Specifically, building my next intricate LEGO set! The Snowspeeder from the Battle of Hoth during Empire Strikes Back was released for this year’s Star Wars day, and I’ve been saving it for just such an occasion. You can see the final product above, and check out the nerdy building process after the jump.  Continue reading

May Wrap-Up & June Goals

No matter how many things I crossed off the list this past month, my to-do list keeps getting longer. Since I’m at the point where I’m doing work (writing blog posts) to take a break from doing other work (line edits on Steel Time), let’s jump right in.

May Wrap-Up

  • I have printed out a copy of Steel Time to do my final pass through before it gets sent off to my editor for her review. The good news is that it is solidly below 90k words! Based on the recommendations of my beta readers, I cut two and a half scenes (which are saved and will appear on the blog as deleted scenes after publication). That got me down to 92k words, and my massive word search for passive and filtering language took care of the rest. That’s a huge weight off my shoulders (my editor was pleased, too).
  • I created a form for anyone interested in participating in the July blog tour for Steel Blood. I’m still looking for volunteers, so check it out!
  • I totally forgot to include Balticon on my list of goals last month! I had a blast last weekend, which you can read about in my con report.
  • Let’s not talk about book 5 right now.

May Book Reviews

May Speculative Chic Contributions

June Goals

  1. Finish and input Steel Time line edits and submit to my editor. I have a the LEGO Snowspeeder set waiting for me in celebration.
  2. Finish coordinating the Steel Blood blog tour and start writing guest posts.
  3. Book 5 outline. There’s a heavy sigh there, which is a poor representation of how I feel about the book. I’m excited to write it, but I’m also scared that I won’t do my story ideas justice.

As usual, thank you to everyone for coming along for the ride!

LEGO cats

Helpful cats are not actually that helpful.

April Wrap-Up & May Goals

You know that saying, about how the best way to get something done is to ask a busy person?

Yeah, apparently I need to be that busy person.

Broadkill beach selfieDid I get everything done that I set out to do this month? Nope. But I did a bunch of other cool things, like see my little sister’s final college dance performance, attend my first Orioles game of the season with my best friends, escape for a weekend to Broadkill Resort, and participate in the March for Science in Washington, DC! On the work front, I also had the pleasure of beta-reading the next novel in one of my favorite series.

April Wrap-Up:

  • Alas, there is no fully detailed outline to book 5 yet. Book 5 doesn’t even have a name yet (ugh, I know). I have lots of notes, and lots of crazy ideas. I’m feeling really overwhelmed by this book for some reason, so it’s taken more than usual to scrounge up the time and effort to sit down and COMMIT to taking the time.

April Book Reviews:

April Speculative Chic Contributions:

May Goals:

  1. Finish final revisions to Steel Time and submit to my editor.
  2. Start organizing the blog tour to celebrate the release of Steel Blood this summer.
  3. Outline book 5…?
Science March

I may be a medical editor by day, but what else would a fantasy author wear to the March for Science? With friends Karrie and David outside the EPA.

January Wrap-Up & February Goals

rdsp2017I had a very good, low-key January that also included some major news and accomplishments. First of all, I’m excited to announce that Steel Empires #3: Steel Blood will be released July 2017 from Raw Dog Screaming Press, along with a full slate of other amazing books. Want to know what Victory has been up to during the events of Steel Magic, while Toria and Kane have been mucking things up in Europa? My tag line for the next one is “Romeo and Juliet with werewolves and weredragons…with bonus feminism.” Who in their right mind cast Victory as Nurse? Oh…that’d be me.

January Wrap-Up:

  • The other good news: I finished the first draft of Steel Time! It clocked it an an astounding 105,951 words, which is waaaaaaay over my publisher’s word limit. Lots of work still to be done.
  • Because it’s so long, I’m still working on the first round of revisions before I can send it to my beta readers. I’m about halfway done, and it’s already down to 99,927 words.
  • On the plus side, I’ve been getting some reading done and I’m keeping up to date on my book reviews!

Continue reading

December Wrap-Up & January Goals

2016-tardises

My 2016 holiday/birthday TARDIS acquisitions, with bonus Alex-cat photobomb. (Not shown: Hand-painted miniature TARDIS I’ve already moved to my desk at the day job and the gorgeous laptop slipcase that a sleeping cat had claimed when I was ready to take this picture.)

Happy 2017 to all! This year I’m looking forward to continuing work on the Steel Empires series, contributing to Speculative Chic, reading lots of amazing books, and attending fun conventions, and watching lots of great movies and television shows. This year’s motto is probably “Work hard, play hard.” Continue reading

NaNoWriMo 2016 (sort of)

timey-wimey-quoteIt’s that time of year again, kids! When the writers in your life disappear for hours upon end, consume copious quantities of caffeine (and sometimes alcohol), and come out the other end of 30 days with some semblance of a book completed. Though I’m not officially signed up for National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo), which consists of 50,000 words in 30 days, my goal is 30,000 words in 30 days. This will hopefully get me close to the end of Steel Empires Book 4.

If you follow me on social media, you already know that I’ve been particularly obsessed with all things time travel lately. This isn’t new, really. I’ve maintained a fascination with the TARDIS for almost ten years, and so I figured it was time to put my own spin on it.

Today, I’d like to officially introduce you all to my current project: Steel Time.


Question 1: What inspired the idea for your novel, and how long have you had the idea?

I already talked a bit about this above, but I’ve known since soon after I started drafting book 2, and decided that this would be a 7-book series, that I wanted to explore time travel at the midpoint of the major story arc. Don’t worry: I won’t be resetting my world and wiping out things that have gone before. Instead, I wanted something epic to bring Victory and Toria back together as POV characters in a novel.  Continue reading