It’s been raining here in Oregon, lots and lots of rain, which is really the best sign that Fall is fully upon us. It also signals to me that it’s about time to do another quarterly update.
Part of the reason I do these updates is just for my own sake, since my own personal, off-line journal contains a lot of random observations and musings that make getting a general overview of what was going on in my life and with my writing at a particular time a bit harder to discern. Nice to be able to just scan the “news” category on the blog. There’s also lots of whining in my personal journal about random trivial stuff which really doesn’t put me in the most flattering light. I mean, let’s face it: I don’t need extra help making myself less flattering.
I also assume since you’re reading this that you might have some interest in what’s going on here at Mutterings Central. Either that or you just Googled “Oregon” and “lots of rain” and it led you here. There’s always that, I suppose.
Anyway, the big news from the previous few months is that I sold my second novel to a major publisher, Wooden Bones, about the amazing things that happened to Pinocchio after he became a real boy. It’s scheduled for a summer 2012 release, so it’ll be a while yet. Sorry folks, that’s Big Publishing for you. Very excited about this one, though. It has the type of high concept, highly commercial angle that got lots of folks in New York excited. Hope it’s worth the wait.
Other than that, just got back from 10 days spent on the Oregon coast. The first few days were spent co-teaching a technology workshop for writers with bestselling writer Dean Wesley Smith. If you read my article about why it’s a great time to be a writer, then you already have some idea what this workshop was about — creating websites, publishing to all the major electronic formats, and using print on demand effectively. Really, it probably should have been called “How to Start Your Own Modern Publishing Company,” because that’s what it boiled down to in essence. It was an amazing group of writers, around 30 or so, and from all over the country. When these folks get ramped up, New York publishing is never going to know what hit them.
Speaking of that, I’m ramping up some of my own efforts in that regard, which I’ll be writing about here in the coming months. I’m still a big believer in targeting those big corporate behemoths, largely because they’re very good at getting books in front of a large number of people in a very short time span, but there are lots of other options available to writers now. I’ll be writing more about how I’m taking advantage of these options in the future, but for now just let me say how empowering it is. Publishers may be panicked about what the future brings, and bookstores depressed, but writers have more options than ever.
After the workshop, I spent a week working on another fantasy for young readers. It was great to be able to focus soley on the writing, while also hanging out with a bunch of smart and talented writers there on the coast. The productivity engines have been moderately good lately; if I keep it up at this pace, this will be my best word count year yet.
What else? Raking leaves. Stocking the candy bowl for the trick-or-treaters tomorrow night. Helping the daughter with piano lessons and tricky math questions. Teaching the boy how to read. Agonizing over continued car bills. Still grieving the loss of our orange tabby, Mangerine, who’d been with us 15 years and died peacefully of natural causes. Shaking my head at all the political silliness and trying to get myself to stop caring about politics so much since it’s so dispiriting — and failing, of course.
Which is a good thing, I guess. If you can get yourself to stop caring, then you’re probably dead as a writer — and really not so well off as a human being either.