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infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
5/26/22 11:28 a.m.

In reply to KevinElliott :

Reading a variety of stories can be an excellent inspiration, and sometimes when writing I just read the previous chapter or so to get my mind "in the mood" and try to imagine the scene in my head so I can think of where I would like for it to go next. Hopefully that makes sense. What has helped me the most is what I call the "word vomit." No grammar, no cares about punctuation or coherency, I just type out my thoughts nice and quick. For example, in chapter three I know I need my character to drive to AutoZone to pick up a clutch for his 944. So then I start my word vomit, which might look something like this:

Jimbo turned on his truck, the old engine grumbles kinda like him because he's grumpy about the porsche clutch he drives towards the store and sees a miata on the way and thinks about how much fun the diminutive cars are and finally gets to AutoZone after waiting in line he talks to the parts guy he's in luck they have one clutch left but it's $500 for the clutch disk, he's shocked but knows he has to pay the porsche tax if he wants to drive one, reluctantly pays and gets the clutch disk then drives home

I'll do an entire book that way, obviously with more detail, but you get the idea. The idea is to let raw ideas and creativity flow without worrying about grammar or if you have the perfect wording of a phrase. Once that's all done, I'll go back and rewrite everything properly and finish the first draft. 

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
5/26/22 11:31 a.m.

So, some good news today. I heard back from the cyberpunk anthology I submitted my cyberpunk inspector gadget story to, and they liked it. However, they need me to change the names. I can't use Penny and Dr. Claw or any other blatant references to Inspector Gadget. In a way that kinda ruins it, but I guess I still have the basis for a good story even with different names. 

dculberson
dculberson MegaDork
5/26/22 1:14 p.m.

Penelope and Mr Talon, PhD?

jamscal
jamscal Dork
5/27/22 8:27 a.m.
infinitenexus said:

So, some good news today. I heard back from the cyberpunk anthology I submitted my cyberpunk inspector gadget story to, and they liked it. However, they need me to change the names. I can't use Penny and Dr. Claw or any other blatant references to Inspector Gadget. In a way that kinda ruins it, but I guess I still have the basis for a good story even with different names. 

Can you use Jenny and Dr. White?

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
5/27/22 2:43 p.m.

I used Jenny and "The Doctor," which is good enough for a short story. Overall I do like the story and basic premise, so if I were to turn it into a longer novella or something I'd think of a better name for dr claw. 

I'm in chapter 5 out of 21 on my revisions, and I got the cover art today for my next novel. I'm pretty pleased with everything so far. before writing book 3 of my trilogy I'm going to take a short break and work on something else, although I do have plenty of ideas already written down. I'm curious what I'll end up writing next!

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
5/28/22 9:08 a.m.

So, here is the cover I got for the publishing derby. I blocked out the pen name so it can't be linked to me, as it's supposed to be done without any links to known pen names. I have to write a story, 10K words or more, based on this cover:

So, based on the artwork, my mind is going in a few different directions. I think it's obvious that the figure depicted here is meant to be the last sentinel. What is he guarding? Is he keeping people/things/aliens from exiting or entering the portal? Is it more metaphorical? While on a phone it may just appear to be a dude on horseback with a spear, if you zoom in you can see some electricity arcing from the spear and some neon lights on the helmet. So this guard, the sentinel himself, is either someone from the future or perhaps an alien. I don't want to go with him being an alien, so I'll say he's a dude from the future. Maybe defending against aliens. I also noticed he's actually riding a unicorn, but I think that's dumb so I'm going to Photoshop the horn out of there. I saw nothing in the rules saying I can't slightly alter the artwork.

So, we've got a dude from the future with an electrified spear guarding a portal. He's the "last sentinel," which I think implies all the others are dead. It definitely looks like he's in some sort of wasteland with ruins surrounding him. I'm leaning towards him guarding the portal and trying to keep anything else from coming through it. Or more realistically, he doesn't just sit there and guard the portal all day (duh), but something at some point in time came through the portal and he is humanity's only hope. Hmmm. How about...

*dramatic music*

In the distant future, after sending countless signals into outer space in hopes of contacting some form of intelligent life, intelligent life instead found us. In a blinding flash of light, a peculiar mechanism appeared in the middle of (CITY), laying waste to everything surrounding. To everyone's amazement, alien beings poured through this portal. However, their intention was not to learn about our culture or share technological innovations; their intent was to subvert and conquer. 

Their planet was drying up due to a runaway greenhouse effect and they sought to start anew on our ocean planet. Wasting no time, they obliterated the largest cities as soon as they arrived. Immediately after, they began enslaving the human race to use them as slave labor to build their soaring towers and disgusting technologies. Breeding plants were constructed, where humans were bred like lab rats and often experimented upon. The dead were used as food for the living. After only two years, the human population dwindled from more than fifteen billion to less than a hundred million.

The humans did their best to fight back against the Cthulhu-like aliens, but pink fleshy hands were no match for tentacled aliens that towered above their inferior human counterparts. The survivors lived in subterranean bunkers, scavenging for food and supplies for the entirety of their short lives. They lived in perpetual fear of death. The aliens were methodically discovering and eradicating all survivors. The human race didn't have much time left.

(NAME), who had worked as an electrician before the aliens arrived, had discovered their weakness and successfully defended the small underground enclave in which he and a few dozen inhabitants lived. They kept a small assortment of farm animals nearby for food and transportation; the aliens largely left the small-minded horses and cows alone and focused their efforts on eradicating humans, whom they saw as a threat. (NAME) could help craft devastating weapons and train the children to fight, but most of the time he just wanted to curl up in the bottom of a bottle and fall asleep forever, to forget any of this ever happened.

One night while he's scavenging the remains of (CITY), he comes back to find that his bunker had been attacked, and everyone captured by the aliens. They would likely be sent to the breeding plants or the slave camps. He found himself out of options. It was time to fight back. After a few days' preparations, he set off towards their stronghold.

(NAME) did not go into their lair to win, or to survive. He went into their lair only to kill them.

 

 

I think something like that might work.

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
6/3/22 12:44 p.m.

Life has been very busy this past week so I haven't been able to write as much as I'd like. Still, I'm slowly making my way through the first draft of my next cyberpunk novel, adding and tweaking things. I started writing the story based on the cover art I posted above, and I'm at 4200 words so far. I'm shooting for around 12-15K, and I have two months to write it. Should be easy as pie. I still need to churn out another 2-3 cyberpunk short stories, as I'd like to submit them to various publications. All in due time.

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
6/7/22 11:19 a.m.

I wrote 5K words yesterday, so that was pretty awesome. I finished the first draft of the story I mentioned above, right at 10K words. So a novelette. I went back to doing revisions on the second book in my trilogy, as that's the more important one at the moment. Once I'm done, I'll start revisions on my short book. It helps to take a break between writing and editing. I'm hoping to find some time to work on my LitRPG book idea today as well. I don't really have much of anything planned out for that one, other than a final villain at the end and the general idea of where I want it to go. I just kinda write and let the story go where it needs.

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
6/16/22 12:33 p.m.

The first draft of book 2 in my trilogy is done, so are my initial self-edits, and it's in the hands of some beta readers. Once I hear back from them I'll make some more edits, then send it to my editor. I also have the cover art. 

I finished the story I mentioned above, where I had to write a story based on cover art I was assigned. It's at 10K words, and after having a friend beta read I lengthened it to 11K. It's still shorter than I'd like. I'd prefer 15K, as I'll be selling this for $0.99 on Amazon. Another friend is set to beta read and I'll go over it again and lengthen a few parts.

The cyberpunk inspector gadget story I wrote was accepted into the anthology I submitted it to, at least after I changed the names and blatant references to inspector gadget. I just signed the contract yesterday, so I'll be getting a percentage of those profits. It'll probably just be a few bucks, but that's still neat to me.

I haven't really written anything this week. I've been busy and just kind of in a bit of a slump and haven't felt like it. I'm writing a short story today, low fantasy, so different than the cyberpunk I usually write. I like where the story is going so I'll probably submit it to some publications once it's done.

Let's do a quick word count!

Cyberpunk trilogy (Aurora Chronicles):
Prequel - 9400
Like Shadows in the Night - 48,879
Like Tears in Rain - 57,110, that will change
Like Lightning on a Wire - I'm hoping for about 65K
Might do a collection of short stories set in this world later. Not sure yet. Would shoot for about 50K words total

Caro Ex Machina (my cyberpunk inspector gadget story) - 6,202
Runner (first cyberpunk short story I wrote, got it published in Hyphen-Punk) - 2,750

Fantasy/Sword and Sorcery series:
The Fallen City (Prequel) - 22,363
The Fallen King (Book 1) - hoping for 70-80K, just have ideas at the moment

The Last Sentinel (my story based on the cover art I was assigned) - 11,343, trying to get that higher.

The Mask of the Gods (my LitRPG idea) - 7,030

Then some unnamed fantasy short story I'm working on right now just to get my brain back in writing mode.

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
6/24/22 7:32 a.m.

I've been too busy to write much lately, and I haven't really been able to think of anything. I still can't think of a primary plotline for book 3 in my cyberpunk trilogy. I know lots of smaller things and side plots that'll happen, and I know some of things at the very end of the book that'll happen, but I can't figure out a primary plot. Being the final book in the trilogy, the threat needs to be large and looming. The tension needs to be high. I'll figure it out one day soon. I might just need a break, but then again I don't like taking breaks.

I finished the short fantasy story I mentioned last post. 2802 words, and I do like the story. Not sure if I want to submit it to a publication or try to use it as a prologue in a later fantasy book. Only time will tell. I wrote some on my LitRPG book yesterday, got it up to 9,478 words, but I feel kinda like I'm floundering a bit. It appears that I do better with a solid framework/outline in place, as opposed to just exploratory writing. I'm sure that's a skill I'll develop in time. Maybe with this very book. We'll see.

really want to get started on the final book in my trilogy. There are a few side chapters I can write, but I really can't progress further until I think of the plot. It's frustrating. 

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
6/29/22 3:21 p.m.

Heard back from a friend of mine that beta-read book 2 in my trilogy. He's an author as well (and in the same genre) so he was able to offer excellent advice. I made some changes, improved the final ending of the book, and over the next day or two I'm doing another read-through. This should be my final bit of self-editing and then I'll send it to my editor. Then I need to start promoting and advertising. Building up some hype. Friday I should have plenty of free time, so I'm hoping to write at least 5K words. 

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
7/12/22 2:02 p.m.

I still haven't thought of a primary plot for book 3 in my cyberpunk trilogy, so I decided to stop stressing myself and move on. I'll think of something one day. For now, that series is on hold.

I had a bit of inspiration a week or so ago and churned out a fantasy novella pretty quickly. 23K words. I like it, and want to publish it, but I found myself in a bit of a pickle. I had originally intended on continuing the fantasy novella I wrote 6 months ago and making that into a series. Well, with this one that I wrote, I used some of my ideas for that and created an entirely new series (although set in the same world, so they can tie in). I guess in the end that's fine. I'll just have two sword and sorcery series now, with different characters. Maybe some overlap. We'll see.

I've been working hard on designing a cover for it. I need a better title for the book, but I think the cover is pretty decent. I'm going to try to do things the right way this time and write another 2 novellas, then release them all within a few weeks of each other. 

All this while trying to learn a foreign language, be a good father and husband, and learn more about network security so I can move into a new position at my job in 6 months. 

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
7/18/22 10:30 a.m.

So, I designed 3 awesome covers for these sword and sorcery books and started writing the second one. I'm going to be smart and write all three before releasing them. That way, I can do a rapid release, and also make changes in the first book to add foreshadowing for the third, etc.

Turns out our upstairs neighbor and friend has a master's degree and would love to get back into editing, even for free, because she loves it. Once I finish these I'll send the manuscripts her way and pay her a few bucks, so we both win. I get a properly edited manuscript for cheap, she gets some experience doing something she likes and makes a few bucks. We all win. Maybe I can help her get into editing more often. There's money in them thar hills.

My spare time is going to be limited this week, but I'm hoping I can still crank out about 5K works and come up with the rough framework for book 2 and some solid ideas for book 3. I need my hero to fight a dragon, somehow—he's not going to win, someone else will take care of that, but he just needs to figure out some way to fight and (barely) survive. Maybe he'll just run for his life while the city around him is destroyed. Not sure yet. Also instead of more "traditional" fantasy where everything is medieval-based, I'm putting an Icelandic slant on this. 

Books in the trilogy:
The Witch's Curse
The Sorcerer's Revenge
Savior of Nothing

They'll have an old-school Conan the Barbarian feel to them. I'm pretty excited to finish writing them. 

I'm also taking all of my current books in paperback format and reformatting them in a more traditional size. Right now they're in 6X9 inches, because Amazon charges less for that. I'm going to put them in 5X8, which will feel a little bit more "normal."  But, formatting for a paperback is kind of a pain in the you know what.

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
7/28/22 9:32 a.m.

Finally got book 2 in my cyberpunk trilogy back from my editor. As usual, it makes me feel like I'm incapable of passing 3rd grade English. That's pretty normal, actually. I have a friend with a master's degree in English and she feels the same way when her editor goes over her manuscripts. So I'll be going over edits for the next week or so, and inevitably fixing some things and rewriting sections. It's a pain, but it'll make the book much better. After watching Commando, the greatest action movie ever, I got some good ideas for the plot of book 3, so that's another plus. Not sure when I'll write it, but I word vomited a rough outline of the main plot, about 5K words. I just need to work a side plot or two in there and I'll have something to deal with.

I have the rough outlines for books 2 and 3 of my fantasy trilogy done as well, so once I get some free time I can crank those out. Here's the cover for the first one:

Yes it says "Temporary Series Title 1" because I haven't thought of a name for the trilogy yet. Hopefully today I'll think of something (if I find the free time).

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
8/10/22 11:04 a.m.

Sword and sorcery novella trilogy:

Book 1: done
Book 2: more than halfway done
Book 3: outline done, final ending mostly written.

Just waiting on the final words from my editor and then I'll prepare to publish my next cyberpunk book. Kinda excited for that. Hopefully it sells. I just need to get better at ads and promotion, so it will.

My very first book that I published, somewhere between sword and sorcery and horror, had a cover that never really sat well with me. So I unpublished it and made my own cover, and it's fantastic. Once I finish the other trilogy and publish them, I'll work on republishing this book, as it takes place in the same world. I have a sequel planned, so I'll have to start on that. Here's the new cover I made:

 

 

Since my usual writing is, you know, so cheery, I plotted out a short book that I'm calling DEHUMAN, that's going to be very dystopian sci-fi, maybe sci-fi horror, and it's going to be incredibly bleak. I designed an amazing cover for it. Once I start working on it, I'll post the cover.

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