Rabbit Holes

Rabbit Holes

I fell down a rabbit hole this last week.

It’s now a week later, and I’m just now climbing out, covered in all the things I’ve found, eyes bleary from staring at my monitor.

I don’t even know what happened.

One day I was on Facebook, and stumbled across a random post. The next thing I know, I’m googling it and digging deeper and deeper into the subject matter. And now it’s a week later. I have a brand new story in mind and so many cool ideas to work with.

For now I’m going to be a little vague, because this is something that’s still developing.

I just want to ask the other writers out there: what do you do when feel like you’ve practically been struck by lighting? The most random thing crosses your path and suddenly you have the inspiration to create something new.

Never mind what you’ve already been working on.

This new story is like a wild animal trying to claw it’s way out of you. It has to be written. And it has to be written NOW.

What do you do?

Do you drop everything and focus on it? Or do you force it back down and continue with what you’re working on?

Right now, I’m at a loss. I honestly don’t know what to do. This story has invaded my thoughts and has influenced everything that I’ve read, watched, or listened to over the past week. I’m in full-on research mode. I’m even a day late on this blog post because I’ve been too busy reading to actually take the time and come up with something to write about.

But I can’t just keep dropping my projects to jump onto something new. At this rate, I’ll never finish anything.

I need input. What should I do?

My Experiment

My Experiment

For the past five weeks, you may have noticed that I’ve been posting excerpts from an unfinished story.

You also may have noticed that I never really explained why I was doing it.

Well, it was mainly just an experiment. And, during this time, I was able to get a lot of feedback from you guys.

Back in December, I stumbled across an interview with a pair of authors named Sean Platt and David Wright. These two authors are pioneers of serialized fiction.

I know that serialized fiction has been around for a long time. Charles Dickens released much of his work as serials before publishing the finished projects as complete novels.

These two guys, however, are treating their stories as if they are seasons of television shows. For a few weeks, or months, they release weekly episodes of a story. Once the story is over, they will release the entire season as a complete novel before moving on to the next story, or season.

I don’t know why, but something about this particular interview made me stop and take notice. To me, this was an extremely cool idea. I started looking into it, and decided that I wanted to give it a try.

I found an old story that I still needed to finish, and split a portion of it into small parts to be released each week.

Over the past few weeks, I discovered some interesting things. I found out when I have something that I think is cool and want to share, it’s really hard to wait for a week between blog posts. I also found that if someone is really enjoying a story, they also don’t like to wait until the next post. They also have no problem telling you that they don’t feel like waiting.

I kinda like that feeling.

I spoke directly to a few of you and was able to surmise that by releasing larger portions, readers would feel more satisfied each week. I also learned that I need to make sure every release has a good cliffhanger at the end to make sure that people come back for more.

So, what happens now?

Do it again, of course!

I’m currently brainstorming what will be the next story to release as a serial. Once I find the perfect story, you’ll see.

In the meantime, excuse me while I dive back into my shame pile.

2016: The Road Ahead

2016: The Road Ahead

People have been asking me where I’ve disappeared to.

I haven’t gone anywhere. I’m still here. Still blogging. Still writing. Still…you get the picture.

The truth is, real life got kind of busy over the past month. Not busy in a “I’m-pulling-out-my-(nonexsistent)-hair” kind of way, but busy enough that finding time to write has been damn near impossible.

With the holidays, have come work deadlines on projects that people want finished before the end of the year. Family have been around a lot more. And school has been iffy with the kids being home more than ever this month.

I decided to take the time off from the blog, and do some soul searching.

Some of you know that I’ve been starting to look into learning martial arts. It’s something I’ve wanted to do since I was a teenager. But I’ve never been able to get around it for various reasons that I won’t get into now. The reason I bring this up is this: The guy that I train with has been hounding me the last couple of months about setting goals.

“If you don’t make a goal for yourself, someone will make it for you.”

“Set a goal so big that you can’t achieve it until you grow into a person who can.”

These are just some of the quotes that have been drilled into my head between jabs and pak saos.

So, I took December and set some goals for myself.

I went old school, grabbed a notebook and a pencil, and made a long list of everything I want to accomplish this year. And I mean everything. I have financial goals, health goals, and of course, writing goals.

I took that list and, one-by-one, made an outline of everything I need to do to accomplish each goal. Needless to say, I have my work cut out for me this year. I have a lot to do, and I only have 361 days left to do it.

I won’t share with you the list of what I want to accomplish, but I will say this: You will see what I’ve been working on soon. Some of it will even be posted here.

Pay close attention.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to jump back into my shame pile.