Word of the Week #95:

Increment

 

How long has it been since I started writing? Well, very close to four years, now.

A lot has changed in that span.

For one, I no longer have my weapon of choice, my magnificent MacBook Pro. Ah, the very thought rends my heart!

For another, my hair keep growing fewer and further apart, and are greying at an unprecedented rate… Which is obvious, yes, but upsetting none the less.

However, there are some things that have changed for the better, and I could not be more glad.

To begin with, I am now far better at what I do. Of course, this too is pretty obvious. You get better with experience and practice. Still, we do tend to forget how far we have come, and the way we cringe at a cursory glance towards our initial work is a reminder as clear as any.

More than anything else, I have now grown accustomed to my characters. I know exactly what they think and how they feel, regarding everything I throw at them. That makes it easy for me to enter their minds, and write about their adventures through their own eyes.

I am growing into a good writer, I suppose.

On the down side, that may be turning me into an exceptionally weird guy. But, I was a pretty weird guy to begin with.

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Word of the Week #92:

Retrospect

Another year has passed us by.

So, how was 2017? As always, kind of a mixed bag, right?

For me, it was quite eventful, if nothing else. I am not exaggerating when I say that my life seemed to change once every month.

Of course, ‘seemed’ is the operative word, here. In the end, we always revert back to our stable equilibrium.

For 2018, I want more of the same.

“Adventures are all very well in their place, but there’s a lot to be said for regular meals and freedom from pain.”
― Neil Gaiman, Stardust

After all, why fix something that isn’t broken, right?

So, this year, I look forward to working in my own room, sleeping in my own bed and, well, what else do I even do?

Life is simple, fruitful, and fun… This year too, let us keep it that way.

Word of the Week #91:

Solace

As I mentioned last week, I hate losing.

Well, as it would turn out, I lost… And by quite a margin, if I may add… It was not even a podium finish…

“Anyone can deal with victory. Only the mighty can bear defeat.”
― Adolf Hitler

Of course, we all know how Hitler dealt with losing the war, so… Words to live by, right?

Anyway, it has been a while since I received the news, and after having spent a few hours sulking, followed by few more hours of brooding, I now feel relatively calm.

I can now see the bright side of things. I know it is a cliched thing to say, but I do believe I have come out stronger.

When you thinking about it, marketing and publicity was never my strong suit. Having been able to put up a worthy fight, I am actually quite proud.

All things considered, being voted as the 4th Best Author of the Year for your debut effort is a victory in itself.

No, I am not celebrating, but I am glad nonetheless.

And, as I often say, Book One was just the beginning.

Beware, 2018. Arrkaya: Immortals, coming soon…

 

Word of the Week #76:

Deconstruct

Editing is not fun.

Every writer will tell you the same.

“While writing is like a joyful release, editing is a prison where the bars are my former intentions and the abusive warden my own neuroticism.”
― Tiffany Madison

Of course, every writer, or at least every good one, will tell you just how important it is.

“Writing without revising is the literary equivalent of waltzing gaily out of the house in your underwear.”
― Patricia Fuller

Now, the trouble is that, as many people who know me well may attest, I am a guy who would be quite capable of doing just that. Why, I am quite sure I have actually done that, more often than once.

And, therein lies the problem.

Regardless, as I mentioned in the last post, I am wiser now. I know most people cannot handle me, or my work, without being appropriately dressed.

So, how does one proceed? The solution is simple. Not easy, mind you, but quite simple, indeed.

“I’ve found the best way to revise your own work is to pretend that somebody else wrote it and then to rip the living shit out of it.”
― Don Roff

Word of the Week #75:

Sophomore

So, as you’d probably know, last week brought some much needed joy and jolly into our lives.

However, that lasted for barely a moment, before another mountain, much taller and wider than the last, stood stark in my sight.

You see, just writing a book, especially a rough, vague preliminary draft is quite similar to taking a stroll.

Of course, this stroll is long and strenuous, like the one in “How Much Land Does a Man Need?” by Leo Tolstoy, and completing it without losing your mind is a feat definitely worth celebrating.

Have you read that story, by the way? You really should. It is amazing.

Now, this ain’t my first rodeo. I have been doing this for years already. I know how it works. I know that, in contrast, the path ahead is not as simple. It may be short, but it is far more uphill.

So, while it still is a time for joy, we know how much more work needs to be done.

It is time to strap on the snowshoes, baby, and just keep walking.

 

Word of the Week #74:

Blitzkrieg

Now, now, I am not making a reference to World War II and all.

Sensible adults don’t need to be told that Nazis are bad, okay? That is like telling you kittens are cute. You’d have to be a special kind of stupid to not know that.

No, I am referring to the title of the final chapter of Arrkaya: Immortals.

You see, this has been an amazing month, and we would like to end it with an announcement I have been waiting to make for quite a while.

After 35 chapters,
122 scenes,
513 pages,
2750 paragraphs,
92,958 words,
countless days of hard work,

I can say that, as of today, Book Two is finally complete.

Time to pop the champagne, yeah? Well, not really…

You see, this is just the first draft, and the work has not even nearly begun.

Nonetheless, we are near, and we could not be more pleased.

Arrkaya: Immortals, coming soon…

Word of the Week #69:

Tryst

So, this past week has hurtled by, as I have been forced to just sit and watch; not that I was particularly ill or anything of that sort, of course. When am I not ill, anyway…

Nah, I guess there are just some weeks like this one.

It is, however, disconcerting when we consider the fact that the end of the contract with my current publisher is no longer at the horizon—it is now very much in the forefront—and I have barely begun working on the editing and rewriting required to prepare the second edition of Book One.

I will admit, as have many readers already observed, that the first edition could have used a little more time and work than it was afforded. Well, I am wiser now.

To write is human, to edit is divine.
—Stephen King

Add to that the fact that the manuscript of Book Two is still not quite completely ready and one can very well begun to hyperventilate.

Quite honestly, this is one of those few instances where the word ‘deadline’ could literally be true.

But, as I keep proving to myself more than to anyone else, I am made of sterner stuff than that. Moreover, I have always found it easier to concentrate on a task when it begins to seem, to an uninitiated onlooker, overwhelming.

If everything seems under control, you’re just not going fast enough.
—Mario Andretti

So, now that the going has gotten tough, it is time for me to get going.

Au revoir.