Monday, December 15, 2014

Project Tin: New Tool

As I mentioned before, I'll be using a new toolset this time around. For the Jute books, I used a combination of:

  • TextPad (wrote in textpad for nanowrimo)
  • MS Word (for the CreateSpace template)
  • Calibre (ebook conversion)
  • Hired out the cover art
This time, I'm replacing MS Word and Calibre with Scrivner. Or at least, that's the plan.

The chapters and scenes entered into Scrivner
Nanowrimo is a fairly large event and various companies offering software and services try to capitalize on its popularity by offering discounts and trials. I used the trial version of Scrivner and then decided to buy it via the 40% discount code "awarded" to nanowrimo entrants. (and probably everyone else on the planet).

I'm still going to need to hire out the cover work, but I'm hoping to just use one tool for creating the print and ebook formats. I wrote the original 50k word draft in TextPad for nanowrimo again, but I immediately put it into Scrivner.

I've only just begun with Scrivner. I've gone through the onboard tutorial and got my story in the tool (though I'm sure I'm already doing things wrong!). I'm not bothering with "character" sheets at the moment, but I might later on. This version of the novel is rough --there's a lot to do and fix.

And I'll outline some of those next time!

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Project Kickoff: New Book

My last foray into self-publishing went okay for a first time author. I sold a few hundred copies, the book was generally well-liked and well-reviewed, and I learned a LOT.

Which is good because I've got a list of things that I will change or do differently this time around.

First, and most importantly, I'm going to aim for a broader audience. My first three books were aimed at the "Middle Grade" age range.

This time around I'll aim for a more general audience. I'm still writing fiction, science fiction to be exact. It will likely be a larger book, broken into three smaller pieces. I will likely publish them separately at first, and maybe together as one unit if/when I get all three finished. I'm aiming for 50k - 65k words per part.

The first book is called:

Tin: a World of Dust and Glass Story

(well, that's the working title anyway)

Next time: new tools!

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Catching Up and Moving Forward

First, catching up...

The leghorn is 9 months old and still hasn't laid a single egg...

The old kitchen cabinet -> bar project stalled out while we waited for a relative to do the sheetmetal work. That just proved we should do it ourselves if we ever get in a hurry.

The final tallies from the garden were interesting. We had green beans, bell peppers, and cucumbers by the armload. Tomatoes and tomatillos and pumpkins were a complete bust.

Moving Forward

I got re-energized about writing fiction while participating in this year's nanowrimo. This year was my tenth, and it was the easiest. Which is surprising only because as recently as mid-October I had no idea what I would write this year.

Then the idea just poured out of me and I wrote about 3k words a day until I finished early on the 24th.

I like the story I wrote enough that I'm going to publish it. And I think that's what I'll spend the rest of the winter blogging about. (you have been warned! ;) )

I am trying a completely different approach this time around, and even the audience for the book will be different. I'll talk more about that stuff next time.

Monday, September 15, 2014


I need to have more patience with things around the house/yard.

That leghorn is 26-ish weeks old and still hasn't started laying. I'm ready to get rid of it, but from what I've read, it can take up to 28 weeks ("or longer" -- whatever that means!). So I need to be more patient.

That big lawn in the back, the one that I've regretted since about 1 year after we put it in? Still there. But we're getting a plan together to rip it out (we are having a drought you know!) since it's nearly dead anyway. See? Patience.

So easy to say, but hard for me to do. With so much success in the garden this year, I think we're both more interested in expanding the garden size and maybe getting a little creative with the layout.

Now I need to be patient and wait for late winter when we'll try to see about getting started...

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

The New Project: Update

Things have been progressing quite slowly on the project... But here's an updated picture. Looks much better now. Still need to finish off the bottom rail and then get the base/wheels installed...

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Big Harvest...

I've been battling the pomegranate tree for years now. We planted it a long time ago and never really got any fruit. We'd get tons of blossoms, but they would drop before forming fruit, or just after.

One year we got a couple of small, super tart pomegranates but the following year... Nothing.

Well, this year, we had seven large fruits and while squirrels got 4 of them, I have three left. I picked two today because they began to split. Look at how huge these are! You may not be able to tell from the photo, bu that strawberry basket looks so small next to them.

And speaking of huge... Look at this egg (the one on the right)! It's from our comet/sex-link (I'm starting to think she might be part Emu!). The pinkish ones are from the gold-laced wyandote and we also have a few from the olive egger -- she just started laying too.

Now we're just waiting for the leghorn to lay and we'll have 4 different colors (which really helps us tell who laid which egg).

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

The New Project

We've definitely bitten off more than we can chew with this project, but that's not going to stop us.

Here's hint/before picture:

Ah, but don't answer yet; there's more to it...

... next time...