Monday, January 28, 2013

Palmetto State University

+ What's on: Impossible, by Shontelle

All for the Game was a comic up until I graduated from high school. It started the slow transition to novel format while I was studying at Clemson University. Palmetto State University is Clemson's fictional alter-ego: the geographic location is the same and I envision the campus layout to be pretty similar.

I loved everything about Clemson while I was there (except for my major, go figure) and I even considered looking for work in the area post-graduation. I ended up going overseas for a while instead, but hey. Clemson is also where I fell in love with the color orange. Orange is brilliant, I think. It's not exactly a happy color, but it is unapologetically bold.

The dots might not be 100% accurate. MS Paint and I are not exactly friends. But you get the idea.

Anyway, I wanted to share a couple (poorly taken) pictures of the Clemson campus to help build a background visual for the story.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

you'll never know just what you're worth

+ What's on: Fix You, by Coldplay

It's been a week since I put The Foxhole Court on Smashwords, and I honestly have no idea how to react to its progress. You guys, Foxes has a 3-digit download. I was positive it couldn't break 40. I mean, let's be serious: it's a trilogy about college students playing a fictional co-ed sport with a couple serial killers thrown in. If someone else tried explaining the concept to me I'd probably quietly end the conversation. It's not exactly a sensible idea. That's why I chose to make the first book free: I wanted to stack the odds in my favor any way I could. But I still can't explain this.

Except I can. This is because of you. It's because of the people who've texted me or emailed me and said they've talked to their friends about it. It's the people who've read the summary, probably muttered a quiet "What the hell?" to themselves, and then downloaded the story anyway. Thank you; a hundred thank yous. The Foxes are so important to me--thinking that other people are reading Neil's story makes me almost sick with glee. I hope you like it. If you don't, thank you for giving it a chance at least. Thank you for holding it in your hands for even a couple paragraphs.

I mentioned fleetingly that The Foxhole Court is part of a trilogy. It will be followed by The Raven King and All the King's Men. The Raven King is about 60% of the way through edits. I have more work to do on it on my end before I can even think of giving it to my betas, so at this time I don't have a definitive answer as to when it will be ready. I'll have more time for rewrites and revisions after I've quit my second job (which should be early-mid February).

I apologize in advance for the useless things I'll be posting here. I've had too many years to think about this story. I've filled entire folders with sketches, trivia, and side stories. I've wanted for a while to build a simple site where I can store that stuff - mostly for my sake, because it is an absolute disorganized mess on my hard drive - but in the meantime this blog is the best thing I've got. Streamlining helps me get in the right head-space for edits, so I'll probably posts bits and pieces while I'm working on Raven King.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

The Foxhole Court

+ What's On: Capricorn, by 30 Seconds to Mars

The Foxhole Court

Neil Josten knows signing with the Palmetto State Foxes is a fatal mistake. After eight years on the run he ought to have better survival instincts, but one of his new teammates is a friend from his old life. Neil left him once; he can't walk away a second time. The longer he stays the faster his past catches up with him, but maybe Neil's finally found someone and something worth fighting for.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

close your eyes and count to four

+ What's On: Don't Stop (Color on the Walls), by Foster the People

A series of quick and meaningless updates:
--I am still in the queue for that job I originally wanted. I'm fine for now; I'm allowed to sit in the ready pool for this position for six months before my file is automatically rejected. I've got two months left.
----In the meantime I'm working two jobs seven days a week: as a hostess at Applebee's and as a provider services rep (that's fancy talk for a call center rep who talks to healthcare providers about claims and patient benefits/eligibility). It's a little exhausting working like this, but I've only got to hold out a few more weeks. I'll probably leave the hostess position in a couple weeks--after I've made sure my boss has hired and trained someone to replace me.

--I don't have a whole lot of free time, but what bit I do have I'm trying to spend on my edits. (I say "trying" because sometimes all I want to do is zone out and play the Mass Effect trilogy. My bad.) My focus lately has been on tidying up a project for self-publication. I've tried this story the traditional way - edits, rewrites, submissions, resubmissions, contests, etc - but finally accepted this story will never make it that way. I considered trunking it altogether, but I loved the story too much. Now it's gone through one last round of edits with some wonderful (and wonderfully patient) people and is just about ready for Smashwords.

--Kanji practice is slow as usual. I started getting a good lead on it, but things started picking up at work. My original plan was to study kanji on my lunch breaks. Now we're so busy (in part thanks to the start of the year, in part thanks to all the new policies we just acquired) we've got mandatory OT through chunks of our lunches and shortened breaks. Oops.

--I can't wait until life calms down at least enough for me to start reading again. Too stressed to enjoy books right now.

Anything notable and new out there?