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2 Dicing With Flames News

Dusty cats, or real work?

Started playing with a “document processor” called Lyx, in my free time, ended up importing and marking up The Raven and The Veil, and then while I was reading through I decided the ending wasn’t as strong as it could be, so I rewrote it. It is now 4000 words longer. Hopefully that’s a good thing.

The cover artwork for Dicing with Flames isn’t done yet. I’m having trouble with the rock textures… and since the scene I’m doing is underground, it’s almost all rock. I put a Black Flag page together today anyway.

Too many things to do!

I stopped writing the story I wasn’t supposed to be writing, and started up work on Black Flag again instead. I’ve also been working on a major overhaul of my writing website (it fits fairly nicely into the chunks of time I spend rendering Black Flag art, and I can keep working at it when I’m really too tired to be doing much that is creative). The website work somehow managed to include me teaching my website to play Crazy Eights (or more precisely a game played with the cards from one of my story worlds that closely resembles Crazy Eights/Uno) because my cat was getting dusty (I don’t actually have a cat, but when has that ever stopped me?) and it was New Year’s, which is a holiday, so I wasn’t supposed to be working anyway. The card game page won’t go live until the new site does, though, and at present that seems very far in the future, because…

My daughter has been bugging me about the sequel to Talking With Winds. She doesn’t want to read it on a computer screen, she wants a book. ‘Please’ and ‘it’s for your daughter’ and ‘you have all that free time so why can’t you get it done?’ I can get it done, just not while simultaneously working on Black Flag and a website and getting a novel finished before March. But I have been meaning to get it printed up, along with Pavane, for quite a while now, so…

At least it’s a fairly short, self contained project. I should be able to get it finished quickly, and get back to my other projects. ::crosses fingers::

Do they count as fans…

…when they have no choice but to learn everything about it?I was entering the lyrics to the Flame and Steel Black Flag song into the music program today (couldn’t remember one of the verses and had to go hunt down the scrap of paper I wrote it on… ended up finding it in my Scent of Spring binder ?!?!) and I walked into the kitchen caroling “…He without the strength to stay me, will be trampled as I pass…”

“Mom, what are you singing?”

So I obligingly started at the beginning. “I was born a pirate’s daughter, I was bred to take command. All I am I freely offer: warrior’s heart and killer’s hand…”

“Oh. It’s a Bonnie Anne song.”

Instant character recognition. That means I’m doing something right?

Dicing With Flames passed the 80 000 word mark today, and is now officially longer than Talking With Winds

Here we go again!

I went way over my quota today. Nearly double. Wrote almost a whole chapter from Samanth’s point of view without even noticing how much I was over, and now I’ll have to go back and switch the second half of it into Tomah’s pov (losing a rather nice description of the villain in the process). :sigh:

But I have finally gotten Asond back into a situation where he gets to be brilliant, snarky and more triumphant than troubled, and we’re fast approaching the end, and all I have to do is get that pesky bad guy out of the way, and then I get to do the final scenes that I’ve been anticipating since back when I was working on Book One. (Now I’m anticipating final scenes from Book Three, of course, which I likely won’t be writing for at *least* a couple years, and more likely closer to three. My muses are always so mean to me! )

I always have trouble holding myself back when I get to this point in a book. It’s a rush, but it’s also very wearing.Which is a pity because I’ve finally got my space armor deconstructed, (so I can do images of it opened up and my space pirates stepping into and out of it) and I could have gotten back to work on the next page in Black Flag if I had any oompha left over. 🙁


Dicing With Flames: 75472 wordsI passed the 75 000 word mark today, so I thought I’d post the count. 🙂

This one is going to be longer than Talking With Winds. I can’t possibly finish it in the next 5000 words; I’ve still got to get them to a battle, and through a battle, and do the wrap up.

Forward Motion

Dicing With Flames is back in production.I’m not up to full speed yet, but while nattering in rec.arts.sf.compostion about what all I’m working at, I got a ‘sounds fascinating’ about Song of Asolde, a ‘sounds fun’ about Eyes of Infistar, and a ‘will you get these stories finished already!’ about Black Flag all within a 24 hour span, so I’m feeling too happy-bouncy right now to angst over being 1105 words shy of my week’s quota.

Cabin Fever

It seems to me the longer I've not gone out anywhere in person, the less likely I am to do any social interacting online. That's a little odd, isn't it? Shouldn't I be doing more online stuff in an attempt to compensate?

Lately I've written about ten times more responses to rec.arts.sf.composition postings than I've a actually posted. I keep going “no one wants to hear you ramble on about yourself or your stories”, and I delete them. When I went to post this I had the option of restoring a draft of an entry about getting some more rejections slips, which I had decided against posting. I haven't even had Bonnie Anne or Talon respond to the latest questions posted on the character chat thread over at the Webcomic List forums.

So I decided that at the very least I should make a progress update type lj posting.

I am back to writing again, after taking three weeks off to crit a novel for a crit buddy. (Unfortunately I slept through a good chunk of those three weeks, so she didn't get three weeks worth of crit out of it.) :sigh:

Dicing With Flames passed 53K yesterday. Yay! Forward motion!
But I don't seem to have enough energy to work on two things at once, so Black Flag and Scent of Spring are stalled.
The in-my-head theater has mostly been running Black Flag 4 & 5. (Why does it have to be five? That's the icky one.)

Author's Note on Racciman's World

I'm going to blame it all on a guy named Tracy Hickman. He was at my first ever science fiction convention, and he did a panel on worldbuilding. I was a dedicated worldbuilder already, but my worlds had always been built alongside of the story that I was telling in them. Before Tracy explained how he approached worldbuilding, it had never occurd to me to build the world first, and find stories to tell in it afterward. So I thought I'd give it a try.

But what to base the world on? Well, they say 'write what you know', and as one of eight siblings, (and later the mother of six,) one of the things I knew was large family dynamics. So I decided to base a fantasy world on that. What would happen, I asked myself, if the gods of a fantasy world, were actually children? A family of children, with all their squabbles and shifting alliegences reflected in the world they created?

Quote from Talking With Winds
'Asolde spent nine days in a high fever. Goddesses are likely the least of what she saw.'
-- Prince Asond
Copyright © Michelle Bottorff

Email mbottorff at lshelby period com