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Well. That was unexpected.

I got up this morning feeling ambitious. No art due today! Glorious day to go to the cafe and get the bottomless cup of coffee and maybe a taco or something! Gonna go work on Bread Wizard and try to get two thousand words done!

(I know, I know, two thousand words is not all that much of an ambition as novels go. Bear in mind that my usual writing schedule runs around a thousand words, three days a week. What can I say? I write short books. 3K a week minimum gets me a Dragonbreath script in 5 weeks, with plenty of time left in the schedule for noodling around on other projects.)

And then, as sometimes happens, the book picked me up and body-slammed me and I hammered out nearly four thousand words and finished the damn thing.

It’s not quite DONE done–there’s a small chunk of connective tissue in the middle that needs to be written yet–but I got the end written. Another couple of cups of coffee tomorrow and I’m done. Then I make Kevin read it, then I send it to my agent to read through, and then I hand it in…six months ahead of schedule. (Hey, it wasn’t due until May.)

The irony, of course, is that even getting it done stupidly early, it won’t come out until the Dragonbreath books are done, because they don’t want me to compete with myself on sales. I initially thought that would be 2013, but then I stopped and did math, and god help me, we might be sitting on this book until 2014. (Two ‘Breath a year, 6 & 7 in 2012, 8 & 9 in 2013, 10 and Bread Wizard in 2014, yup…)

On the other hand, that’s not as far away as it used to be, and since those were the terms of getting Dragonbreath 8, 9 & 10 sold, and thus providing me with gainful employment for the next year and a half, it’s totally worth it. Lord knows, a book this size needs heavier editing than a Dragonbreath script anyway. It’s just weird sometimes to be in an industry where you write a book and you’ve practically forgotten it existed by the time it hits the shelves.

I feel good about this one. That’s almost certainly a bad sign–it’s always the ones you feel good about that turn out to need gutting!–but this feels like it might be a good one. I’m letting it go with a “hot damn, I think we got somewhere!” rather than a desire to fall down and sob because oh god, there was all this stuff I wanted to doooo and I didn’t and this is all the book will ever be and oh god, where is the scotch?

Feels a bit unnatural, honestly.

We’ll see how I’m doing tomorrow when I get the last little bit in there…


ETA: Oh, hell with it, the book wanted to be done today. Another 850 words and it’s as done as it’s going to get before going under the editor’s knife. I deserve hard cider. And perhaps potato chips.

NaNoFiMo Count: 4770

Originally published at Tea with the Squash God. You can comment here or there.


4K in a single day is... Yeah. Days like that are awesome. Also, yay for being (almost) done!

As a complete aside, just got back from World Fantasy Con. One of the freebies was a Realms of Fantasy issue. Flip through it and whose art do I find? :)

I'd like your editor's face when they get the book.

Do you know if that one will be available as an ebook?

Ah...I think so? That's usually a clause in most of the contracts these days.

Well with this all but behind you ( ;) ), when do we get to hear about more Regency Ninjas, or the resurrection of Elf vs Orc?

Congratulations on the productivity spree!

It's always good to know that there is more to look forward to!

So, Dragonbreath boxed set about the time Rose can start reading them to herself. Perfect!

10 books... Dragonbreath is going to have a long tail.


and oh god, where is the scotch?

The scotch is over here, of course.

Yay draft!

Got whiskey. Got wierd combinations of flavors like honey or cinnamon and "scotch" or "whiskey".

Even got some REALLY DECENT hard ciders. Next time you're in Silicon Valley, I'll buy you a few pints. Come visit Carla, ya know ya wanna!

Booze at Rabbit's Foot Meadery/Red Branch Cidery (same place).

Yay! Eventual money! And more time to work on other projects!
(Not that we have, y'know, an ulterior motive here.)

I presume stuff like Regency Ninja would not be considered competing with yourself because the target audience is older?

Exactly. And I can always pen-name it up if there are concerns.

You do realize, of course, that you are living my intended life?

Except for the Kevin. I'd prefer a Judi Dench, myself.

I'd prefer a Judi Dench, myself.

Ah, a man with taste! As the song goes "there's nothing like a Dame"!!

YAY for finished book!

I love when books do that and just demand to be written and you get a crazy amount of words in. That rocks. :)

Oooh, that sounds like a marvelous day.

I got Ghostbreath to give my thirteen year old nephew when he came to visit and he said "Oh, I already read it. I bought it the first day it was in the store."

And yes, he liked it. He must have, as my sister says he spent his own money and now has all his Dragonbreath books lined up in a row on the "I reread these when I don't want to sleep" shelf. (Along with Calvin and Hobbes, the Cartoon History of the Universe, and some old Asimov nonfiction. Not many authors qualify for middle of the night rereads in his pantheon, but you are among them.)

So I took the copy I bought to the library tonight and set it loose among the sharks. After some debate, Tony got first dibs because he reads fastest and will probably have finished it in time for David to read before he has to go home and eat supper which will leave it there for Joseph to check out and take it home. Kenny claims that he's too old, but when I left he was peering over Tony's shoulder.

Your nephew has good taste.

Charlie Stross, in one of his extensive FAQ posts about writing, seems to suggest that if a professional writer can average 500-1000 words of finished prose per day, they're doing pretty well. Averages are funny though, because that type of work tends to be bursty. I've also seen it figured that a good programmer can average 100 lines of code a day, which seems small until you consider the time taken up by planning, debugging, and documentation.

I always had the impression that programming was as much about taking stuff out as adding more. There are days when an awesome programmer can leave the codebase a few hundred lines SMALLER.

I think you earned yourself a vacation.

Oh who am I kidding, you earned yourself a chance to do more personal work.

"The Words Must Flow!"

This is an auspicious start to a NaNoFiMo :) congratulations!