The Cool Kids


So, all the cool kids are off at Dragon (No Asterisk) Con or Worldcon.  Or they’re having wonderful end-of-summer weekend celebrations with friends or family.  Or they’re preparing for the Jewish High Holy Days, getting ready to welcome the new year with symbols of sweetness (apples and honey for the win!)

And some of us are left at home, staring at our computer screens.

But that doesn’t mean we can’t have our own fun.  We can have a kaffeeklatsche, just like at the big cons. 

Pull up a seat.  Lift a cup/mug/glass of your favorite beverage.  Help yourself to some of the chocolate scattered across the table (or, if you’d prefer, some of the late peaches or early apples). 

I’ll kick off our very open-ended discussion.  What are you writing these days?

Me, I’m working on a series of category romances, all built around a (made-up) major league baseball team.  The first, PERFECT PITCH concerns a left-handed pitcher who is trying hard to live up to the ideals set by his Hall of Fame father, even when he’d much rather pursue romance with a beauty pageant queen who is trying to promote a program that teaches music theory to kids in public schools.  The book is fun, fluffy, totally hawt, and — perhaps most important to my current good mood — short (50,000 words, or thereabouts.)

How about you?


22 comments to The Cool Kids

  • I’m mostly house cleaning to get ready for company (and getting tired of it) so I haven’t had a lot of time, but I’ve been trying to get through revisions on the first two books in my epic fantasy romance trilogy. I took some time off from it so I didn’t get burnt out and now I’m delving back in so I can get the third book written. Sent another book, a space opera sci-fi romance, back out into the world to try to make something of itself.

  • The semester’s started again, and I’ve just realized that I’ve forgotten how to teach. But I’ve been trying to do the last gasp of revisions on my Princess book, and revise my second project – the YA mind control/incest/cannibalism fantasy – from scratch, since, surprisingly enough (sarcasm!), it didn’t start in the right place. I’m supposed to be finishing up my masters papers too, but just this morning a new novel premise came to me, and I’m still riding high off that. 🙂 And short sounds good! I wonder if I could make this one short. *sigh*

  • I’m working on one last short story about Kestrel, so that I can *finally!* release the ebook collection. I’m also headed out to spend a few days with my family in the mountains, so I’ll be working in longhand, which is sometimes very freeing for me.

  • After finishing being jealous of those folks at Dragon Con (*sniff* I miss The Big Bad release party *sniff*) I’m working on an Ya/New Adult about a (bastard) girl who had her half-brother killed so she could have the family Senate seat, because she wasn’t sure he father would give it to her instead of her younger (non bastard) brother. Now an invasion has happened, killing her father and step mother and a bunch of other folks. She and her friends have to stop the invasion while she puzzles out who her mother is and why it matters to her, to being a Senator, and to the invasion itself. I like it ’cause Cassie isn’t a nice person certainly, and she’s not a particularly good person, so a lot of the conflict in the story (internally) is about her deciding whether or not she wants to be a monster, especially as her own very troubled biological heritage comes to light. It’s set in a fae world, and she’s half faerie/ half human, or so she thinks in Chapter One, anyway. That all kind of falls apart in a hurry.

  • What a great way to get people to comment. I’m currently working on the sequel to my YA/Paranormal novel “The Dark Genesis of Daniel James”, a prelude to my post apocalyptic zombie novella and a book about a dime store novelist who goes searching for his (much more successful) brother, an investigative reporter who’s suddenly disappeared. All three are fun to write but for different reasons. In the YA novels I get to relive my teen years and have fun by blending science and magic, in the zombie books I get to be gory/disgusting, and in the last one I get to play with government conspiracies.

  • Trying really hard to find a good pair of sunglasses to cure the “ooh, shiny” syndrome preventing my ideas from becoming a WIP and eventually a completed manuscript. I got the BIC, even the HOK done – the issue is WOP. Next week – next week it will happen (got committed for this weekend to something that will remove one of the shine-ies from my life. Loved it, but need it gone to do a WIP.)

  • Sigh. After all these years, I’m still not a cool kid. But I’m looking forward to my long weekend anyway. Like Cara, I’m trying to remember how to teach again, and for the last few weeks most of my writing has been lesson plans and emails about lesson plans to the rest of the faculty.

    For my “real” writing, I’m revising my scifi/mystery. I feel like I *finally* know what the book is about, so I’m cutting out lots of scenes and writing new ones that do a better job of driving the story. Once classes start next week, my writing time drops drastically, so I’m trying to get all my revision ideas written down so I don’t forget them, even if I run out of time to actually make the revisions.

  • sagablessed

    But…but…but…I WANNA GO DragonCon! *Stamps foot* OK, temper tantrum over. I do get to go to ConCarolinas. 🙂 Hope to see some of the MW crowd, contributors and members there.
    Currently? I have three works.
    Working on an epic/high(?) fantasy. A young prince searches for the witch who killed his sister. He must do so without anyone knowing he is a prince, or the gods have decreed he will fail. He uncovers family secrets, plots for a coupe by a neighboring kingdom whose priests dictate death to all non-believers, and more. He is not the biological child of the king’s first wife, and he has a forbidden love. Murder, war, religious fanatics,and self discovery must be dealt with before he take up the forbidden crown of his heritage: the last Wild Mage.
    Next is a Y/A urban fantasy I will take back up. I thought I had lost it all when laptop crashed, but found a hard copy and my timeline. This one is about three college kids. Amber is chosen by the Sisters of Avalon to be the Weaver, she who threads magic back into the world. Her cousin’s bf is becoming a mage and prophet. The cousin, a pure mundane, finds himself trapped between two worlds the magic one and the everyday. Daemons, Giants, humans and fae all want what the Sisters’ footman has given Amber -the key to Avalon and the Wellspring of magic.
    Third is a sci-fi thingee. Alien race has fled to earth from their dead world. They are telepathic. The pure bloods are going insane and losing their powers, while the “Mixes” are developing new abilities. How can a highschool boy who just discovered he is part extraterrestrial break free of the threats from greedy private interests, hounding government agencies, and his own people? All he wants is to win the State wrestling match, date his girl, and finally get laid at prom.
    Not much more on this yet.

  • sagablessed

    I think I am overextended. 😛

  • Ken

    We’re still cool kids 🙂

    I’m working on a sci-fi novel about a disgraced starship captain that tries to redeem herself and starts a war instead. First draft, 65k words (and some change). I’m also thinking about starting a blog (again).

    In September, I can start the application process to try and get into the Creative Writing MFA program at the University of Michigan. I need to get transcripts, write up Educational and Personal statements of purpose (up to two pages, double spaced :)) and find folks who would be willing to look at some of my stuff, determine “Yes, he can be taught” (I always hear Robin Williams’s voice when I think that line) and who would be willing to send an “Email of Recommendation” to the department.

    All before the turn of the year (Sooner than that, because I suspect an information bottleneck will be happening around December)

    Busy busy busy 🙂

  • Ken> I can help with your statement of purpose if you want someone to read it. I’ve helped some other folks successfully get into grad school (MA and MFA in English). Let me know–we can chat about it. Those letters are really hard–like worse than a query letter hard. 🙂 Good luck with them!

  • Vyton

    Mindy, great idea for a post. I was in downtown ATL yesterday and helped a woman with two large rolling suitcases, two small suitcases, and a backpack get off MARTA at Peachtree Station and get her pointed toward the right hotel. She was here for the Con. It’s started. But, I’m working this weekend. No Con.

    I’ve just made some changes after a professional edit of my time travel novel set in Mammoth Cave. Then it goes to my last reader (also my first reader). I’ll be working on query letter and synopsis.

  • Hepseba ALHH

    Indeed an excellent way to get people to comment, and to find out about the cool things people are working on.

    My main thing (which I’ve *finally* been able to get back to working on a little bit after *moving*) is the revisions on my first (and so far only) novel – high-fantasy is probably the best descriptor, though the magic is *very* subsurface and won’t be directly explored until book 2. It’s about three characters caught up in different sides of a resistance effort to overthrow an evil Queen. (I love using the term ‘evil Queen’; it’s so…misleading). To move forward with my revisions, one of the key things I’ve been working on is outlining for the next book. Two of the characters are shaping up with pretty cool story-lines, but one of them (the one who’s actually physically closest to the core plot (and the Queen)) is still largely a blank. However, I think once I figure out his personal path through the larger events (he’s a painfully good guy who ends up on Her side), I’ll *really* want to finish revisions so I can get started on book 2…

    Which is *sort of* annoying, as I’ve also got the first chapter started on the *next* story I want to work on: a quietish sword-and-sorcery type fantasy about a guy who marries a troll – which is way cooler than it sounds and involves shape…changing(sculpting?).

    Also, waiting (probably too patiently) in the background is a short-story I’ve been working on: a fantasy about a young girl going through the life-or-death culling, training and selection process to become one of her people’s oracles.

  • Ken

    Thanks Pea 🙂

    I’ll give your shoulder a tap on the MW Betas list.

  • I could use a nice, low-key chat under the apple trees today. 🙂 Thanks, Mindy!

    Today I’m writing an article on Eowyn and her connections to warrior women in Hervararsaga which is supposed to be conference length and is turning into a monograph. I don’t know if that scares me or excites me. Either way, I’ve got a lot of work to do between now and October when it’s due.

    I’m 20K behind on my YA epic fantasy Sisters of Mercy about Curie, a young woman who has spent her entire life dedicated to the Sisterhood of warrior women who fight for the Goddess. She wants nothing more than to complete her training and take her final vows as a Sister, but she’s been placed under a deathbed geas by an enemy of the Goddess, her beloved Abbess has a dark secret that may get Curie thrown out of the order, and she’s starting to seriously question the holiness of the Matriarch who governs them all. Caught up in church and national politics beyond her control, Curie’s best allies may be the very heretics she’s sworn to fight.

    And I owe PeaFaerie a ghost story. So really, my calendar is pretty empty.

    Ken > ditto what Pea said. I’ve helped a number of my students write those things and get into grad school.

  • Razziecat

    I wanna read Ken’s book! 😀

    I’m trying to decide if my WIP can be saved, while also working on a short story/backstory about one of the main characters; and developing a new idea involving, let’s see, mages, a death sentence, a king’s guard, religious bigotry, a villainous king and mysterious agents of the divine–the worldbuilding is going more slowly than the character development 🙁 If I get the basics of the plot down, I’ll probably do NaNoWriMo again. 😉 And that’s not counting the occasional forays into my space opera stuff…I’ve been wanting to go play in that world again…

  • Hey, some of us are at PAX in Seattle! Yay video games. This year Patrick Rothfuss is here in place of Wil Wheaton, who got snagged by DragonCon.

    And I’m taking it easier this year. Not pushing myself. So I’ve been able to sneak some writing in when I can. Since I need to have a sample of writing for my Blue Pencil appointment at SIWC, and I wanted something new to submit, I’m reworking an older fantasy piece with a science fiction background about alternate worlds, curses, and two sixteen-year-old girls caught up in their problematic family legacy. This year I get to show my work to Jim C. Hines! 😀

  • ..and some of us got told about this wonderful place at PAX! ^_______^

    *Writing mojo: increasing!*

  • I’m still working on the second draft of my YA epic, “Another Sword”. Hoping to have Draft 2 done by November, as I have an idea for a sequel that I’d like to use for NaNoWriMo. It’s a tool that works extremely well to get me motivated and banging out the words, even if 50k will only make up about one-half or two-thirds of the novel. It should at least carry me through the middle, which is always the hardest part.

  • I just want to say — I had a great time reading these posts over the holiday weekend! And my apologies for clearing a couple of new posters to join us — I was offline for most of the weekend. I look forward to hearing about progress on all these projects — and more!

  • Welcome, Devin! 🙂

    (I may have told several interested writing folk about this magical place at PAX. I hope they get a chance to check it out!)