Questions 3: Do You Play Well with Others?

As I said on Monday, I haven’t really tried to write with another author.  The few attempts I did make was long ago and failed miserably with the exception of a project in high school.  This means, I’m not an expert and can only talk through what I think can help instead of what I know.  May have just negated my entire Wednesday post, but that’s the truth.  Now, I open the floor to those who might know a few things and be able to lend a hand.

  1. Have you ever co-authored a book or tried to do so? Why or why not?
  2. What do you think is the biggest challenge to co-authoring a book?
  3. What advice would you give to an author partnership?
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Immortal Wars: The Summoning Part 30 #fiction #throwback

(Previously on Immortal Wars.)

(Again, we shall revel in my teenage originality.  Everyone groan in unison.)

Disclaimer: Immortal Wars was the book I came up with and wrote in high school.  I hadn’t even hit college by the time I wrote the first two books.  That means I hadn’t developed my style yet, wasn’t good at self-editing, and the story was fairly basic. So, you’ve been warned that this is the ultimate author throwback segment for my blog and will show my author origins.  FYI-  I put the first book (The Summoning) through a Print-on-Demand publisher and the second one (Light, Blood, & Tears) never saw the light of day.  Enjoy!

While Miracle gave Fate his rude awakening, their two companions were in the game room’s arena.  They were playing the laser warfare game that Infinity had found a week and a half ago.  Hydrana wasn’t doing too badly, but she complained whenever she was shot by one of the holograms.  Eventually the holograms learned to try and aim for her mouth in order to prevent the onslaught of noise that preceded shooting her.

“Ow.  Stupid holograms.  They can’t shoot me in the back.  That’s unfair!” hollers Hydrana.  Since they were using real laser pistols this time, there was a gaping hole going through her stomach.  The bleeding wound quickly heals and the only remaining sign of her injury is the fist-sized hole in her emerald shirt.

“Well, you can tell our enemies that sneak attacks are unfair when, or if, we finally meet them.  Of course, learning some kind of defense couldn’t hurt you,” says Infinity, who is hiding behind a burning holographic tree.  Lasers bounce off of him when a yellow barrier quickly appears and disappears around his body.

“So excuse me for not being able to deflect lasers with a telekinetic shield.  Everyone can’t have incredible mental powers like you.”

“I didn’t mean it like that.  I just meant you should do a lot less complaining and more fighting.  Our enemies will be hitting back several times harder than these mindless holograms.  So start fighting back.”

“You mean like this?” remarks Hydrana as she jumps into the open and starts blasting away at anything that moves.  She dodges every attack and she shoots all of the holograms at least twice before they hit the ground.  When only Infinity is left, she shoots his laser gun out of his hand with pinpoint accuracy.

“I’ve been taking some marksman lessons from Miracle,” mentions the redhead after she drops her gun.

“I noticed.  I’ll turn the game off,” states Infinity with a red hue to his face caused by his embarrassment at being disarmed so easily.  Before he makes it to the door, Hydrana pounces on him and puts him in a tight headlock.

“Do you give up?”

“Yes,” gasps the Earth guardian while trying to pry her slender, but powerful, arm off of his neck.  When Hydrana lets go, Infinity stands up and immediately pins her arms behind her back.

“Not that I mind, but may I ask what this little embrace is for?”

“It’s mostly to prevent you from trying anything else on me.  That and just for fun.  Where did you learn that stuff if you don’t practice with the rest of us?”

“I learned it from watching you and the others as well as some private practicing with SEAS.  I’m not really a brainless brat like everyone thinks I am.  Well, everyone that is except for you, Steve.”

“I really think you should drop the spoiled bitch act.  It could end up going way too far one of these days.  Will you stop pretending to be mean?”

“Eventually.  I’m not just ready to let my defenses down for the others right now.  Give me some time to get used to everything and then I’ll give it serious consideration.  Just don’t tell Fate and Miracle that I severely beat you.”

“I wouldn’t tell them if they threatened to poke out my eyes and throw me in a vat of acid.  Not that it would do much to any of us,” claims Infinity as he lets go of Hydrana’s arms and pulls her close in order to plant a kiss on her smiling mouth.  Their lips are about to touch when a loud and familiar noise startles them.

“What are you two doing in there!” yells Miracle.  She had walked in with Fate a few moments ago and was sitting at one of the bigger tables.

“Damn it!  None of your business.  Just go away, you little tramp,” snaps Hydrana in her snobby tone.  As they get to the table, the robotic bartender has already put down some tall glasses of Orion punch that Miracle ordered beforehand.  This peculiar liquid smells like fresh strawberries and changes color every three minutes.  The bartender quickly mentions that each color of the drink produces a different effect.  The six-armed robot also warns them that the drink is very deadly, even to immortals, when it turns dark green.  Fate downs the drink when it’s bright yellow and immediately feels a burst of pure energy.

“Well, excuse me for living, Delila.  Seems like everyone on the sun base is in a bad mood this morning except for me.  Now, everybody calm down and listen to what I have to say,” orders Miracle.  Hydrana and Infinity sit at the table and notice a small stack of nine, blue metallic folders on the table.  The folders are portable data computers that can hold information on only one subject.  Each one is labeled with an odd name like Hellax or Startrix.

“These look like more advanced versions of the data pads that I work with.  Mine only have a touch screen and printer.  They can’t save anything.  What are these things for?” asks Infinity.  He picks up the top folder on Psylon and begins looking through it.  A sudden look of disgust crosses his face when he begins to read about the psychotic immortal.

“Data computers are better than data pads, but they are a lot harder to reprogram after using them once.  These folders contain all of the information that Miracle and SEAS were able to dig up on the evil immortals.  The data folders can tell us most of our enemies’ powers and names, but not much else.  The left side of the folder shows the subject’s full body profile and a DNA graph.  SEAS also said there’s a good possibility of some new immortals in the group.  He is attempting to scan the surface of Pluto for anything that could help us.  But they already have sensor jammers in place that even SEAS can’t figure out.  So this is all we will probably have to go on until we actually meet our enemies,” explains Fate as everyone takes one of the data folders.

“They all seem very powerful.  Like this one guy who can cause things to implode just by touching them.  Says that his name is Cybro and for a villain he looks pretty cute,” mentions Miracle while looking through Cybro’s file.  His picture is of a gorgeous, brown-haired man in red leather armor and his body is very slender.  The file was obviously made before his accident, so it doesn’t say anything about Cybro being a robotic killing machine.

“How about their gorgeous leader?  She’s called Adriana.  I wouldn’t mind going one on one with this immortal,” announces Infinity.  Hydrana sends him soaring clear across the room with a high-impact water blast at point blank range and then she freezes the floor to Infinity’s boots.

“Cut it out, Hydrana.  Now!” orders Fate in a surprisingly booming voice.  With a simple wave of her unclenched hand, Hydrana unfreezes the floor from Infinity’s boots and lets the wet guardian sit back in his chair.

“Looks can be deceiving really comes into play with these guys.  This ugly one named Mindtrigger looks like a stupid wimp, but his data file says that he’s smarter than the four of us combined.  The same thing goes for this big guy called Draveon.  Unlike their other strong man, Hellax, this guy is supposed to be very smart as well as unstoppable.  Too bad these files don’t tell us Draveon’s specific powers.  It just says to avoid him at all cost.  We sure don’t have much about them,” mentions Hydrana.  She tosses the folders to Miracle and Fate while she calmly leans back in her chair.

“The bottom line is that all of these immortals are extremely dangerous and have birthright powers like us.  But the one enemy we have to really look out for is the one known as Pulsar.  This woman appeared in the wild areas of Germany and was responsible for stories of ghost attacks.  I can see why because she’s some kind of a floating black cloak with metallic arms and silver eyes.  Her file says that she can transfer her soul and psyche into her victims.  This means that she is capable of taking full control over anyone she wants and we wouldn’t know about it until it was too late,” explains Miracle.

“Now that is a cool power!” exclaims Infinity.

“Too bad one of our enemies has it,” mutters Hydrana.

“Attention all planet guardians.  Your presence is required in the Main Hall immediately.  Fate knows where the Main Hall is, so just follow him,” announces Solix over the sun base’s intercom system.

“Let’s get this over with and then we can get back to studying these files.  Follow me,” says Fate.

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7 Tips to Co-Authoring Without Violence . . . Hopefully

Yahoo Image Search

If you thought it was difficult writing alongside the voices in your head then try it with someone in the same room.  You can’t ignore a co-author by making noises, watching television, drinking, or taking a nap.  Well, you can, but they’re able to move on without you or dump ice water on your head.  So, it isn’t recommended that you pick a fight with them like you would with your characters.  Here are some tips to keeping the bloodshed to a minimum.

  1. Unless it’s agreed upon, neither of you are in charge of the whole show.  Decisions need to be shared or a system created to give each other autonomy.  As soon as one author tries to take over the entire project, it’s going to fall into disaster.  Something to keep in mind here is that you need to get your ego stroked while doing the same to your partner because authors, like most artists, can be touchy.  We don’t have telepathy to share identical dreams.
  2. If something you really wanted was removed from the story, do NOT go on a crusade for revenge.  Talk to your partner and see if you can find a way to include what you wanted.  If they refuse to walk with you then perhaps the partnership needs to be worked on at its foundation.  The moment you begin destroying what they like with no other reason than revenge, you’re done.  Negotiation is key here.
  3. Communication is key, especially if you’re working with autonomy on different sections of the story.  These pieces need to fit, so you need to know what is going on.  Read each other’s sections once they are complete and before you move on to see where the story is going.  This is a risky method of writing and can lead to an enormous amount of editing runs, but it’s been done.
  4. Never settle disputes in the following methods:  duel at noon, drinking contest, steel cage match, slap game, drag racing, international scavenger hunt, or gathering friends to side with you.
  5. You have to pull your weight if you want your name on the book.  Don’t hook up with an author who has the dream, talent, and work ethic simply because you want to say you published something.  You need to be involved.  This isn’t a high school project with the one kid who does nothing except put their name on the paper or supply cupcakes.
  6. Partners need to adapt their styles and techniques to fit with each other.  If you’re a pantser and you’re working with a planner then you need to accept that there will be at least one pre-writing meeting.  If you’re a planner working with a pantser then you need to pull back your outlining urges enough to let them go.  Do not expect the other to jump to your way of thinking and leaving everything that makes them an individual behind.  That will hurt the final product and eliminate whatever uniqueness the real combination of styles would have created.
  7. Whenever things begin getting tense, you take a break.  It can be together to relax with a movie or going out for a walk.  It can be alone to get your own thoughts in order and then return to talk things out.  The chances of fights happening are higher than you think, especially if you don’t have a hierarchy.  Keeping a partnership even only works with manners and open minds, so a collapse of that means trouble is happening.
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Teaser Tuesday: Those Aren’t Griffins #fantasy #vampires

Cover Art by Alison Hunt

Here we are.  The first teaser for War of Nytefall: Ravenous and I’m going with the prologue for a bit.  Less chance of spoilers, which is going to be a challenge this time around.  There’s a big event in Eradication that played a role in this one.  Two actually and they might be unavoidable.  Oh well.  Nothing I can do about that because the show must go on.  Enjoy the opener.

Continue reading

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The Binge-Worthy Book Festival Week 1!

As I mentioned on my Saturday post, N.N. Light is hosting a Binge-Worthy Book Festival through the month of August.  Every weekday will have a new set of authors.  Legends of Windemere: Beginning of a Hero is on for today alongside others of various genres.  It’s a great selection, so I recommend checking it every day.  There are contests you can enter as well.

Click here for the  Festival!

Clicker here for the Rafflecopter!


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Jacqui Murray’s AGAINST ALL ODDS #NewRelease

Staci Troilo

Ciao, amici! Today, I’m delighted to host for the first (but hopefully not the last) time, Jacqui Murray. If you read the comments on my site, you’ll recognize her name. And if you keep track of talented writers, you probably already follow her blog. If you don’t, you need to. But not yet!

First, let me share with you her latest release, Against All Odds, book three of her Crossroads series (prehistoric fiction genre). She’s even graciously agreed to share chapter one!

Please help me give her a warm welcome.

Xhosa’s extraordinary prehistoric saga concludes, filled with hardship, courage, survival, and family.

A million years of evolution made Xhosa tough but was it enough? She and her People finally reach their destination—a glorious land of tall grasses, few predators, and an abundance that seems limitless, but an enemy greater than any they have met so far threatens to…

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Two Authors, One Book, and Possible Headaches

Mr Bean

So, I was asked about co-authoring a book a while back.  If I thought it was a good idea or something that I would do in the future was the gist of it.  This isn’t as easy a question as one would think, but that could just be me.  Once I get going with a story, I don’t really play well with others, which colors my opinion a bit.  Still, you see it done all the time and it is successful, so there has to be something to it.

First, what do we mean by co-authoring?  Well, it can be many things from what I’ve been able to tell.  Some partnerships have each other write a section with it either being passed between them or done independently.  Others have the main author and then the other will do the revisions.  Some work completely together with one typing and the other talking with switches happening.  I’ve even heard of authors who write scenes with their characters and hand it off for their partner to fill in for the other half of the cast.  If the system works for you then that’s good.  Some of these seem a bit clunky to me, but it really boils down to the connection between authors.

Artists in general can be rather egotistical and stubborn when it comes to their writing because they have a vision.  It’s rare that the vision will match with that of another or be flexible enough to allow for a ton of input.  Equal footing isn’t easy unless both parties are ready to give up parts of their dream.  This is why it seems like you have co-authoring with one as the primary and the other as a secondary.  The main one writes the story while the other adds in things to make it clean.  Almost like a planner and a pantser working together if you think about it.  You also have anthologies, which removes this problem entirely because each author writes their own independent story.  Even with this, you tend to have 1-2 big authors to draw in readers and help the lesser known ones.  So, there is a hierarchy at play.

Personally, I don’t think I’d be very good at this.  I plan a lot of my story and then I craft it carefully, which is very much a solo process.  I can do some give and take, but my experience in trying tends to make me apprehensive.  Much more take than give from the people I tried to work with or they simply weren’t very good.  Once in high school, a friend and I wrote a short science-fiction story with no problem because we were in synch.  Every time after that became a battle of egos or the story was just bad.  I remember one time I tried to work with someone who demanded a flashback happen on the second page even though we were in the middle of the introductions.  Another time, a person took my entire idea and rewrote it to their vision keeping only two things.  That would be the character name and him being a vampire.  I wanted to do an adventure and this guy wanted to do social commentary on religion, so it fell apart rather quickly.  Since then, I haven’t really wanted to try again because I’ve been burned a lot.  It could still happen if I met someone who I really synched up with, but it hasn’t happened yet.  Not to the extent where a project has appeared.

So, what does everyone else think of co-authoring?

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Thoughts on Parenting an Autistic Child

I’ve been dancing around writing something about this for a long time.  I’ve mentioned that my son is on the spectrum.  Earlier this year, we had the official test . . . or was it late 2019?  Either way, he got an official diagnosis of autism.  It was a much longer phrase that I’ve forgot, but it’s what people used to call Asperger’s.  That doesn’t even work right now, but knowing has made things both easier and harder.  It explains why my son does what he does, but it makes it more of a challenge to help him through it.  Let me try to explain in my own words.

Yes, these are my own words, thoughts, and opinions.

Autism is a spectrum disorder because it isn’t a ‘one size fits all’ situation.  Every person who has autism has their own flavor of it.  Some are non-verbal while others never pick up on when they have to be silent.  Some have physical challenges while others are strong as an ox and fast as a cheetah.  Some are terrible students while others get straight A’s.  It always comes down to the individual, which people seem to forget.  So, what helps one could be an utter disaster for another.  That’s why getting advice and opinions can be so frustrating because it doesn’t usually take your specific kid into account.  Over the years, I’ve had many things that irk me as a parent in both what people say or how things work, which is what this post is really about.

Are You Sure He’s Autistic?

I truly hate this question when somebody asks me about my son.  Yes, he is talkative and able to run around with other kids.  People seem to expect him to be non-verbal or socially distant.  The thing is that an autistic person can be very social.  They simply don’t get all of the cues, which is what my son is like.  People will ask this question and then I’ll tell them to watch.  After a few minutes, they’ll see that there is something different about him when compared to the neurotypical children.  It’s a rough question to tackle because it comes off as insulting.  Do you think I say it to get special attention or give him an excuse for some of his behaviors?  No!  That’s ridiculous because these things make life harder for him.

I Can’t Wait Until They Cure Autism

This goes along with ‘Autism is a disease’, which I’ve heard out of one or two parents.  All I have to say here is ‘FUCK YOU!’  Seriously, this isn’t a disease.  There won’t be a cure.  It’s how these children and adults are naturally wired, which is different that what we have established as ‘the norm’.  More on that nugget later.  I truly find this line of thinking infuriating because it means you think my son is sick.  That he’s defective and the only thing to do is cure him instead of helping him become the strongest him that he could be with this.  Note how we say this for mental disabilities and not for physical ones too.  I don’t see many people saying that those born deaf are diseased.  Those that do are rightly yelled at.

Parents of Autistic Kids Are Falliable

Maybe it’s just at me, but I always get the feeling that I’m expected to be the perfect saint when it comes to raising my son.  I’m writing a playbook for raising him as the game is progressing.  Most of the time, I feel like I’m doing it by myself too.  So, I’m going to get frustrated and exhausted and stressed.  I think every parent of an autistic child, especially single ones, hit a point where they are about to break.  If you don’t get to pull back then you explode a bit in terms of yelling or crying.  This is reality.  We don’t like to admit this and those on the outside tend to judge.  It’s just such a whirlwind because:

  1. Part of you examines the past on how you could have done better.
  2. Part of you is locked into the present and trying to handle what is happening.
  3. Part of you is worried about the future of your child since:

Society Really Wasn’t Designed for Autism

Right to the point.  One of the biggest reasons an autistic person has trouble is because the strict guidelines of our society don’t factor them in.  The flexibility we see is entirely for the tightly packed differences in neurotypical populations.  Accommodations that are made have to be fought for and they make the child stand out, which can bring about negative side-effects.  I still remember a sub job in Florida where a class bully would set off the autistic child to stop the lessons.  You also have children and their parents thinking it’s ‘unfair’ that an autistic child gets ‘special’ treatment.  That’s only school too.

Autism comes with a difficulty in understanding social cues.  That means, things can be said ‘incorrectly’ or misunderstood.  People are very quick to assume the worst and autistic people don’t walk around with a sign on their chest.  They don’t step into a room and loudly declare it either, which shouldn’t be how it goes anyway.  So, mistakes happen during interactions and it can roll out of control.  I watch my son make a slip and it becomes a disaster for him because he’s aware that things went wrong.  Autistic kids can be very focused on themselves because we raise them to be highly aware of what they say and do.  While this can help them be cautious in their interactions, it also means they are more likely to take their mistakes to heart.  It turns into it always being their fault when that simply isn’t true.

What Are His Special Skills?

At some point, people began to believe that those with autism are savants in some field.  It is like they think the difficulties in other areas means they’re a genius in others.  That really isn’t the case.  I’ve seen my son show skills in multiple areas, but the challenge is getting him to work hard and stay on the path.  He gets impatient when things get tough and decides that he’s mastered enough, so he moves on.  This is fairly common in autistic kids, especially if they are afraid of having a meltdown and decide that it’s easier to stay away from stressful situations.  As a parent, I try to nurture my son’s interests and skills without pushing too hard.  At least with my situation, I’ve found that he doesn’t gather interests and skills, but replaces old with new.  Time to learn fractions?  Now, he doesn’t seem to try with division.  Reading ‘My Hero Academia’?  Not sure he wants to go back to ‘Captain Underpants’.  Personally, this worries me about things because society demands that people be multi-purpose instead of singularly focused.  Be nice for all of us if the latter was allowed without shame and criticism.

*Insert Any Parental Advice*

Look, I know the advice comes from the heart and means well.  Some of it even works, but it gets frustrating when the giver begins pushing.  It doesn’t help when I’m talked to as if I’m either an idiot or don’t know my own son.  You get two camps of shaky advice that can upset you too.  One is another parent of an autistic child who speaks as if what worked for them will work for everyone.  They don’t realize that every person comes with their own flavor, so they give their advice as gospel.  Then, they get annoyed if you point out how it might not work for your child.  The other group are parents who don’t have autistic children and give you the generic advice without listening to you.  That last part is essential because there are parents who give advice, listen, and understand.  With these others, you point out that your child is autistic and they don’t really ease up.  It can really drive home the fact that your child will have a difficult journey when compared to others and that you, as a parent, can’t rely on established methods.  Again, I know these usually mean well, but they can wear down on a person especially if one is simply needing to vent or get their own thoughts out.

We’re All a Little Autistic

I’ll admit that I thought this long ago at some point.  It was when people talked about Aspergers being connected to creativity.  This mentality didn’t last very long because I actually looked into it.  While I had autistic markers according to the list, I didn’t react the way an autistic person does.  That’s a big factor.  My son and another child could be hit by the same stimuli.  Both can become unfocused and stressed.  The neurotypical child will get upset, but can be brought back fairly easily.  My son could lose it and act like the entire world is collapsing around him with very little ability to pull back.  He’s gotten a lot better, but things still happen.  Parents of autistic kids always fear regression because it can be triggered by a single event that most would consider benign.  So, we really aren’t all a little autistic.  It’s just that both groups can share the react types, but the size and scope of such reactions differ greatly.

This is a longer than usual post because I felt like I really needed to get this off my chest.  I deal with people and events that connect to these things both in real life and online.  I’ve never reached a point where I’d hide that I have an autistic child, but I’ve seen others go that route.  Parents of autistic children are already under a lot of stress because the love of their child is matched by their worry.  Some of us even get upset that our love isn’t enough to handle the situation when things get really rough.  Venting to others tends to come with judgement even among the autism circles since many prey upon these groups with the promise of cures and causes.  I never imagined the minefield I would wander into when I became a father, but it does feel like a daily battle to keep myself on the right path.  Every time I’m made to feel like a failure, idiot, or loser by strangers or those who are close to me knocks me down a few pegs.  Can’t stay there for long because then I become useless to my son who needs me to at least try.  This is a difficult journey that most don’t understand, so I hope this does clarify a few things.

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It’s Coming! The Binge-Worthy Book Festival by N.N. Light!

Every weekday of August will be an exciting event with authors, giveaways, and books!  It’s the 2nd Annual Binge-Worthy Book Festival by N.N. Light!  Bookmark those sites and enjoy the fun every day.  Maybe you’ll find a new favorite author or reunite with an old face.

Click here for the  Festival!

Clicker here for the Rafflecopter!

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Welcome to August and Our Newest Round of ‘WTF, 2020!?’

First, I have to announce something big!  Starting on Monday is the Binge-Worthy Book Festival run by N.N. Light.  It’s their second year doing it and it’s a lot of fun.  Check out new authors and books every day.  There will be contests too.  I’ve got Beginning of a Hero, Loyalty, and Life & Times of Ichabod Brooks being presented on various days.  Click on the banner to check out the site.

Second, I want to say that having pollen allergies, anxiety, and running myself ragged these days is a bad combination.  This is more so since we had a few birthday parties, but they were predominantly outside.  Still, I begin to cough and my mind goes to the wrong place.  I stress myself to sweating and feeling overheated, so I take my temperature in case it’s something else.  Feeling run down after a long week has me end the day thinking of long swabs up the nose.  Doesn’t matter that I go to bed and wake up feeling okay because I’ve read that covid-19 can make you feel okay one day and horrific the next.  Call me paranoid, but . . . Well, that’s pretty much it.

A part of it might be that the plan for reopening schools is starting to come together.  It seems that every district is doing some level of in-school classes.  Some are doing more than others, so teachers and staff are voicing their concerns on-line.  I’m scared for myself and my son, but he needs to learn and I need to work.  Wearing our masks and staying away from others just like when we wander out of the house.  It isn’t a perfect plan, but it’s all we’ve got.  My only hope is that if things start to go south that there’s a plan for everyone to go back to remote.  Last thing I want is to catch this and learn that the plan is to let the weak fall to the side in some disturbing ‘survival of the fittest’ strategy.  You may give me looks, but I’ve seen plenty of people claim that we should use covid-19 to clear the sick, weak, and old from our population.  Pretty sure a school district wouldn’t do that though, so I am joking there.

Last week was my son’s 11th birthday, which was a blast.  The party was a simple gathering in a park with a few friends.  One group happened to be in the area for their daughter’s birthday, so the timing was perfect.  The little guy made out like a bandit too with a bunch of FunkoPops.  His collection reached a point where I had to buy a shelving unit for him, which he took as a source of pride.  He got some great art supplies and a camping/nature adventure set too.  The biggest present was a Chromebook that he used for the last of summer school and to do more drawing.  The computer is simple and he uses his school account, so there are plenty of protections.  He was initially upset that he couldn’t change the wallpaper thanks to school limitations, so I made him an account with me as the parent overseer or whatever.  He got the wallpaper, but we found out that the restrictions blocked him from YouTube until he’s older.  Oops.  So, he’s accepted that the wallpaper will be the school one, so he can get some videos.

Writing-wise, it wasn’t a big week.  This is my time to have my son, so I’ve been doing as much as I can with him.  Mostly the pool, watching anime, and playing Uno Attack.  I finally started beating him yesterday.  I did manage to finish all of the October posts and start in on November.  Running out of random ideas for Sunday though.  That’s usually whatever comes to mind like a poem, meme collection, future idea, or thoughts on a specific topic.  For example, tomorrow is a post about ‘PARENTING AN AUTISTIC CHILD!’  You’ve been warned.  Might do more of those depending on the reception tomorrow.

Anyway, book writing was only 2 sections of War of Nytefall: Anarchy when the ex-wife had my son for a bit.  It will take 3 days to finish this book, so it will be next Saturday that I complete it.  I’m going to use the coming nights to work on the outline for War of Nytefall: Eulogy.  This is where things get a bit difficult.  I could start writing the final book right away, but I want to edit War of Nytefall: Savagery first.  That could take the whole week that my son is with his mom, which I’m fine with.  I could start in on the finale, but grad school will appear to cause some conflict.  I don’t know how that is going to work exactly, but balancing parenting, working, grad school, and writing will be a nightmare.  Since it doesn’t make any money or progress, writing will end up being the loser here.  I could alleviate the pressure by skipping a December release and making it February then make 2021 the year I publish the last 3 War of Nytefall books.  It gives me time to outline the next series and maybe work on Do I Need to Use a Dragon? (Fantasy Writing Tips).  Life of a nearly failed author isn’t fun.  Probably need an agent or something, but that’s a whole operation that I’d have to add onto the pile of tasks you see above.

Outside of all that, I watched the first season of ‘Umbrella Academy’ in preparation of the second season.  I’ll slowly make my way through it, which is a problem.  I woke up Friday morning to find that people had already binged it and Twitter was littered with hashtags that were spoilers.  I have Facebook friends that think everyone binges stuff immediately and spew spoilers out there.  I think I did the 30 day silence on all of them.  I should finish it by the end of the week, which means I can jump right into season 4 of ‘Seven Deadly Sins’ or binge season 1 then go into season 2 of ‘New Legend of Monkey’.  This is what I do at night when I finally run out of steam.

So, goals of the week?

  1. Fun and games with son!
  2. Finish writing War of Nytefall: Anarchy
  3. Final outline of War of Nytefall: Eulogy
  4. Write blurb for War of Nytefall: Ravenous.  (I really should get in on this since I want to release it in September.)
  5. Watch ‘Umbrella Academy’.
  6. Hopefully find out more about grad school.
  7. Schedule more November posts.
  8. Figure out some topics for December.
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