I’ve taken the plunge

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I’ve put my first novel (written over 20 years ago) out on Amazon, blurbless, coverless as it may be. That’s a generic cover, made with Amazon’s Cover Creator. It isn’t too bad looking, but I’m going to see if I can’t find/make etc., a better one in the next couple of weeks. This is the story of a young knight going out to fight a dragon (and that’s part of the reason I haven’t written a blurb yet. What else is there to say? 😕 )

This isn’t the novel about An & Mattan which still has the first draft linked in the sidebar, and which I’m still working on with Barb, my editor friend. I was trying to make Mattan like a rock, but according to most of my alpha readers, I missed, and turned him into a doormat instead. There still is an implied inertness, but one that comes from weakness instead of strength.

Barb, bless her, thinks that he really is a rock, and he’s just so reserved that no one can get to know him until we draw him out some more. She has me working on various pieces of the book, and swears that it’s getting much better. All I can see at the moment, though, are pieces of the book strewn all over, like the time my parents refinished the piano.

Anyway, I plan to get back into blogging regularly soon. I keep getting distracted, by real life, by my characters An & Mattan, and by books I’m reading.

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Mugshots of characters

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I still owe a few people book reviews, which I’ll try to get out in the next week, but I thought today I’d do something else today, once I finish battling with WordPress, which has changed its posting interface without notice. (Going through the Dashboard to create a post brings us back to the old posting interface).

Some time ago I Simmed all the main characters in my An & Mattan story (currently available unedited under “Writing” in the sidebar, if you can get through it). So, just for kicks, I’m going to show what the characters look like. Since I’m not one for making custom content, I’ve been stuck using whatever hair I can find, and sometimes I’m not too happy with what I come up with.
But anyway:

  1. An
    Screenshot-451Her picture turns out pretty well. She’s almost smiling (unlike most of the rest of the pictures, where my characters are scowling at me). At least you can see her green eyes, freckles, and red/brown hair. I’m not sure what’s going on with the shine in the mirror, though.
  2. Mattan
    Screenshot-459 Mattan’s hair is wrong in this picture. It should be pulled off his forehead, not over it, and everything below the band (which should be more of a flat clasp or barrette) should be blue. (His hair also should be slightly shorter in the back.)
    Screenshot-444 Mattan with short hair. I forgot to have him wear his leather jacket when I posed him for this picture. He pretty much always wears it. When he’s working in his workshop, he also wears a baseball cap turned backwards, but I decided not to post it this time.

  3. Jasin
    Screenshot-439Jasin turned out almost too cute (he’s better looking when he smiles), though once again I’m not sure what’s going on with the shine in the mirror. He has the same red/brown hair as An. I tried to make his hair redder, and An’s browner, but I couldn’t give them quite distinguished the way  I wanted without going  too obvious.

  4. Belinda
    Screenshot-449Belinda’s hair is fine, but I don’t like the way her face turned out as much. (She’s dressed for working in the restaurant.) She should be prettier, without losing the strength in her face. She has a bit too much jaw/chin, or something. More than I’d like anyway.

  5. Tolly
    Screenshot-447Tolly suffers a little because all Sims of the same age group are exactly the same height. (If you give Sims high heels, it doesn’t make them taller, it shortens their legs.) Tolly is supposed to be considerably taller than the other characters, so this doesn’t come off well. I’ve tried to make his shoulders as broad as I could, but I’m not sure it helped much. But his orange, slightly rumpled hair came through just fine.

  6. Glorina

Screenshot-453Similar problem to Tolly, Glorina is supposed to be smaller than nearly everyone else. I settled for giving her narrow shoulders.

 

 

  1. Jelana

Screenshot-457 Jelana is the one I wish most I could find the right hair for.

In the first picture, the hair is much too curly, in the second, it is a little too long, and in the third, it is much too smooth.

Screenshot-456If I had the skills to combine the three hairstyles, I’d probably be able to figure out something.

I made her a teen, rather than an adult, because she’s supposed to look very young. This also makes her shorter than the others (though it  doesn’t usually work  that way in real life.

Screenshot-455 I also gave her slightly alien eyes, which did seem to work out better for displaying her not-quite- human status.

I didn’t even try to Sim Daved. I don’t think I could give him enough of an “Uncanny Valley” enough of an appearance. Especially since the Sims are quite Uncanny Valley on their own.

I have fallen behind

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I’ve not been posting like I’ve been wanting to. This is all my own fault, of course. I’d finally gotten to the point where my An & Mattan story was finally coming together, and I put all my effort into that, instead of coming to write this.

I have several books that I want to review (before their plots vanish from my mind), I’m behind at least two poems (since it’s Friday, and I still haven’t written one for Sunday).

I could probably write a blog on our trip to the Zoo on Tuesday, and how it was crowded, but we didn’t see signs of the fights and gunshots that apparently were the big news. We did see police cars as we were driving out, though. Lots and lots of police cars. Probably more we didn’t see.

I’ve done a little editing to the An & Mattan story, but I’m not going to put the edits up on my blog. (I did at least make sure the version up has been spell-checked, though).

At the moment, I’m finally getting around to editing another book I wrote more than 25 years ago, and have seriously been meaning to get in and edit for the past six months.

I’ve already started writing the next book. I had been planning on doing a story far back in time in the same universe, but Mattan conned me into doing a sequel, saying it’s really part of the same story I just finished. Riiight.

Next week I shall endeavour to write something every day, and get things caught up a little. My husband has managed to put a blog post up every day, in spite of his long work hours and taking classes where he has to research and write papers. I’m sure I can do the same.

Am I going crazy?

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Don’t answer that.

I could  have sworn last night after I typed part of Section 6 of my An & Mattan story, I never copied it over to my computer. But I found that portion of it on my computer, and a page in my blog. So, did I do that in my sleep? ::Puzzled::

Anyway, I’ve now finished typing in. I’m going to do a quick read-through for typos and such this week, then put it aside and edit it later, after I’ve let some other people look at it.

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5
Part 6
Epilogue

The State of the Blog Address

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The past couple of weeks I have been working really hard on getting my An & Mattan story typed up. The last few days I’ve managed to get  about 3000 words typed up per day. I have about 5000 words left to go, so that means two more days of typing, more or less. Possibly less if I can really get working on it.

Today I was typing something that was written close to when I started working on this story, but toward the end of the time-line. Turns out, I didn’t need that epilogue as much as I thought I did, I have a lot of the information (but not all of it) already written in that section. It also was obviously written before An started telling Mattan why she has trouble being happy, so it was news to him. I downgraded that somewhat. It also brought out several things that I had intended to say, but hadn’t gotten around to yet. So, keep that in mind for the revisions.

I’m not posting today’s typing yet. I didn’t realize until I posted last night’s entry that I’d somehow missed spell-checking a good portion of what I had already typed, so it was rather messy.

But anyway, since I’ve been doing that, I haven’t been writing blog posts like I intended to, and my poetry writing has fallen behind. I’m probably not going to catch that up this week, but I’m hoping I can next week.

An & Mattan Story Notes

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I’ve now finished typing up Parts 4 & 5 of my An & Mattan story, and am 3000 words into Part 6. I figure I still have about 8000 words to finish typing in, including the Epilogue.. That probably will take me until at least Wednesday, possibly Thursday. I at least am past the big climax of the story, and into the winding things up section.

Then, I figure I’ll probably let it sit for a week, before going back to edit it. I have plenty of other things I need to edit in the meantime, as well as other stories that are shoving their way into my brain. (Not the stories I wanted to do next, of course. Other stories.)

I still have no idea if this one is any good or not. I’m sure it needs a lot of work.

Links to the story chunks:

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5
Part 6

Done! (Sorta)

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I think I’ve finally finished with my handwritten rough draft for my An & Mattan story. I still have to write an epilogue for it, though.
Actually, what probably need to do is find a place to put in a flash-back, and put the extra information there. But for now, we’ll call it an epilogue.

I stayed out writing for about an hour longer than I usually do today, since I was in the middle of the climax of the story, and couldn’t put my pen down until I finished that scene.

 

I’ve had a reasonable amount of clicks on the first part of my An & Mattan story, considering how little traffic I get on my blog in the first place, but very few people click on to the other parts. So it probably isn’t very good as written. Still, it’s the first time I’ve gotten this close to finishing a story in close to 30 years, so I’m excited. I’ll try to have the rest of it up on my blog in a week or two. Then I’ll have to start editing it  (ugh) to make it fit for human consumption.

TTFN!

Story Notes, An & Mattan

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Recently, I decided that it’d probably make more sense to just type up what I’ve already written, and get it out here, even if I’m still working on writing the stuff between, so I can cut down on the amount of notebooks I’m carrying around with me. Those things get heavy after a while.

So far, I’ve managed to cut out one notebook. I probably will be able to get rid of another one while I’m at it, leaving two notebooks I’m still working on.

So, I’ve put up two more sections of my An & Mattan story (each about half the length of the previous two sections). Part three follows immediately after part 2, but Part 4 takes place sometime later.

Hope you enjoy them.

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4

An & Mattan Story, Part 2

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Here, as promised, is the next chunk of my An & Mattan story. It’ll probably take me a while to come do the next chunk. I’m writing the story in sections, and the sections aren’t quite coming together yet.

So this chunk basically ended this section, and the next section is a few days later, after some other stuff happens which I haven’t written yet. As far as I know, the whole story line takes place within a two week period, unless, of course, I decide to end it eight years later.

At this point, though, I’m thinking that I’ll end it at the end of the two weeks (in which case, I’ve already got the ending written, though not typed) and deal with the eight years later as a separate story. Much like Louisa May Alcott originally wrote her “Little Women” story in two parts, ending the first part when Father returned from the war, and not writing the second part, dealing with marriage and death, until a few years later. Though of course, I don’t write nearly as well as she did.

I hope you enjoy it.

An & Mattan, Part 1