Writing Report for March 2019

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Holy word count, Batman! Going back through my records, this was actually my best month for word count ever, and the first time I’ve ever broken 100,000 words in a month. Distant number 2 was January this year at under 82k, and 3rd place was September last year at a touch over 81k. I know I’ve said my goal is progress rather than word count, but wow.

Accomplishments in March:

  1. Battlefield: complete at 74.4k, but with a lot of dictation cleanup still to be done. Of course, that’s goes along with the previous two novels in the set, so there’s still a lot of work to be done there.
  2. Welkiri Corps: complete at 60,003 words, but only about 60% dictation clean. Only 10k more than I’d been thinking it would finish at, and very briefly, the projected finish date was the same as for Battlefield. Reality was two days after.
  3. Still on the novel front, I started in hard on Big Hair Day. After a little struggling in the first couple of chapters, I think I’ve found the character’s voice, and I’m not stressing over the outline. Currently at 23,285 words with a projection of 46-50,000 in a very bare bones first draft.
  4. And, since I didn’t have any short fiction in my skull screaming to be written at the time, I started in on Fallen Heroes, the third book in the Citizen trilogy, and broke 14k on the weekend working on it as a secondary project.
  5. Editing: all of the Undead stories now resting at final draft, with the last one getting there just a couple of days ago. The cover I’ve envisioned for this one needs some original artwork, and I’m toying with a bit of internal, too. Not releasing for a while, but I’m happy to have the stories complete.
  6. Still editing: finished the final draft of Fractured Unity the night before last, and definitely ahead of the original schedule. Cover design needed there, too, but I’m hoping to Wattpad this awesome work of Star Trek fan fiction in June.
  7. Fan Fiction: the conversion from Audio Drama to first draft prose novel of A Matter of Honour, is about 54% complete. Slow going as this is a “spare moments” conversion that really wasn’t on this year’s list, but I’m hoping to have this one converted before the end of May. Original Series Star Trek, if that surprises you. Or if it doesn’t.
  8. 11 blog posts. A little light again, but I missed a whole week.
  9. 14 journal entries. More here than I expected, as I was originally aiming for a minimum of one per week. Averaging 3 most of the time.

Total word count for the month of 100,981 which seriously kicks the planned 40k. It was already going to be a solid month when a solo trip to Ottawa with zero side trips gave me a 9k day and an hour’s worth of podcast listening at 2x normal speed.

I don’t expect to produce at this rate every month. I didn’t expect to produce at this rate this month. The week that borders April and May is a vacation week, and I’m sure I’ll take more time off somewhere. Remembering always that life happens. But even looking at the week and a half I spent on vacation in February, my average month of word production in 2019 is a little over 76k.

The problem with that, of course, is that I’m generating new words far faster than I can polish most of them. Not a bad problem to have, but still.

On the indie publishing side, I’ve made some progress here on a bunch of projects. My goal is to get to the point where I’m working about two months ahead.

  1. “Thorvald’s Wyrd” is available on Amazon as both an ebook and a paperback. Heroic Fantasy novelette.
  2. So is Skip to My Luu. Full-length Science Fiction novel.
  3. Turn the World Around is ready to go and just needs uploading. Science Fiction novella, within visual distance of being a novel.
  4. Cover re-design and upload for “Babysitting the Taran-Saurus”. Ebook slotted for May.
  5. On the fanfic side, “Breath Control”, a ST:TOS fanfic starring Dr. Chapel, is complete on Wattpad or available here.
  6. Also fanfic, “Wolves and Sheep Dogs”, a ST:TOS story starring Lieutenant Leslie, is ready to go and will release in April.

Next up, primary writing goals for April. I’m going to keep them light

  1. Primary Novel project: 21,000 words on Big Hair Day would make me happy. Having a similar primary novel word count as in March might get me to the end of the plot, and that would make me ecstatic.
  2. Secondary Novel project: see point number 3 in this list, but I’m going to set the word count target here at 5k.
  3. Short Fiction: looking to write two short fiction stories, in the 2-5k range each.
  4. Plotting: Unified Destiny (3rd book in a trilogy) plotted out to the scene level and ready to pick up the first draft right after I draft its predecessor, Converging Destiny.
  5. Plotting: start the plotting of the novel where Curaçao figures as a primary setting.
  6. Editing: I’m going to start on the read-throughs of volumes 2-5 of Troll World, remembering that what’s currently volume two is going to get split at the appropriate point. This is a quarter of a million words in rough (dictation clean up not done) first draft, so I expect this to take a few months. Hoping to devote enough time to cover 50k per month on clean up and note making.
  7. Non-fiction word count goal for the month 10000 words. Blog and journal, mainly.

Switching over to publishing:

  1. 10 short story submissions. This is going to be a standard target, but I’m going to keep mentioning it to keep myself honest and because I haven’t actually hit it yet this year.
  2. Keeping working on finding a home for Ancient Runes. Traditional publishing, so this goal is going to get repeated a lot, I think.
  3. Serialization continues for “Thorvald’s Wyrd” and Skip to My Luu, continues for “Thorvald’s Wyrd”, and runs completely for “Wolves and Sheepdogs”.
  4. Ebooks for “Babysitting the Taran-Saurus” and “Wolves and Sheepdogs”. I actually could have done both of these last month, and they’re both essentially ready, but while I want to produce steady content, I’m not looking to flood things.
  5. Design and layout for Heroes Inc. (Superhero novel), “Graceland” (linked collection), “Babysitting the Taran-saurus” (SF novelette, and Fractured Unity (ST:TOS fanfic novel).

The total word goal for the month is about 45k, depending on the length of those two short stories, and the publishing side should be doable. Just keep swimming.

Be well, everyone.

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Lance
Lance Schonberg is an eclectic genre fiction author with more than two dozen stories published or on the way. 2019 is the year he dives into independent publishing, starting with "Thorvald's Wyrd", "Skip To My Luu", and "Turn the World Around". And he needs a more exciting short bio.

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