naomi_jay: (ZP - yay)
Oh my God, you guys. You guys. Seriously. I wrote nearly 9k today. I did. My arm is killing me, but it's worth it because the first draft of BLOOD HUNT is now done and winging its way to my wonderful editor at Queered Fiction.

9000 words. That's my new record. I probably should have stopped at 5k and finished it off tomorrow, but I reached a point where the end was so close it felt stupid to stop. Look at that word meter, people. This novel is 102% finished. This novel is a mathematical impossibility!



71663 / 70000 words. 102% done!

Huzzahs! Now all I need is someone to check the French and a couple of trusty beta readers. If you can help with either of those things, let me know and the rewards will be awesome and shiny!

For now, I have a wicked headache and a very sore arm, so I'm going to stop typing and watch Derren Brown perform crazy feats of wonder. Burn the witch!
naomi_jay: (ZP - yay)
So! I have completely worn out my arm this weekend. I wrote about 4k on BLOOD HUNT and started a short story, as well as doing some brain storming for a sekrit projekt, and woke up this morning very achey and stiff all down my right arm and across my shoulders. I'm at a point with the arm injury where it doesn't really hurt at the time anymore, so I have no warning bell telling me to stop, but the next day I always suffer. Still, since I'm edging ever closer to finishing that mythical first draft, I'm not going to complain. Another 20k to go and I'm there!


 
48000 / 70000 words. 69% done!

In other news, we have acquired* a corn snake!



There he is, along with my hand. Not the best picture, but he's not feeling too sociable at the moment because he's shedding his skin. We'd been talking about getting either a bearded dragon or some leopard geckos for a while, and then a guy we know in the village mentioned he needed to rehome his snake because he was getting a puppy. Or something. So anyway, we picked him up on Saturday. He's six months old and we've named him Ket. He hasn't really been handled very much yet and is a bit tense whenever he thinks we're going to touch him, so we let him just settle in and burrow around the vivarium all day yesterday, and today we're going to spend some time getting him used to being handled. Stay tuned for my adventures with Ket, in which I will undoubtedly be bitten a lot!

*I've been thinking about the word "acquired" and how it makes it sound like we stole Ket or found him roaming the streets or something. Is that just me? It seems like a word you generally follow with "by illegal means." For the record, we did actually pay for him and didn't rob him from an unsuspecting passer-by or anything.
naomi_jay: (ginger snaps)
I've managed to keep to the "at least 1k a day" rule while I've been off work. I'm sure I'll be able to keep it up once I'm back at work, it just might involve a bit of self-bribery and a lot of whinging about my arm. Oh the pain! I switched from Vista to Windows 7 recently and haven't investigated the voice rec situation with it yet. I mean, I know there is voice rec, I just haven't set it up yet because of my crazy fear about teaching my laptop to think for itself and sparking the robot rebellion, in which I am killed in the opening credits.

Anyway. As usual, the plot is throwing up some twists I didn't expect, and like with SILVER KISS, there are more relationship issues than I anticipated, but not so much between Ayla and Shannon this time. In the mean time, Ayla is speculating about monsters, and I'm wondering if it's too early in the plot to send the cast down into the catacombs for some horror.

 
11387 / 70000 words. 16% done!
naomi_jay: (carmen sandiego)
6. Where are you most comfortable writing? At what time of day? Computer or good ol’ pen and paper?

Most definitely on a bed or sofa with my laptop. I hate writing at desks. I never did my school homework at a desk; always on my bed using a huge book on dinosaurs as a substitute desk. I've no idea why - obviously at school and at work I use a desk just fine, but when it comes to writing, I want to be slumped somewhere soft and cosy where I can't possibly get up with disrupting everything and everyone around me.

Time of day... Well, given that I work full-time, I'm pretty restricted to the evening. At the weekends, I'll write on and off all day if there's nothing else I need to do, but as a rule I think of evening time as writing time. And nowdays, always the computer. I used to hand-write everything and then type it up, but over the years, as my RSI turned into radial nerve damage, I found hand-writing for extended periods way too painful. Typing is ever so slightly less painful, so I've switched over completely. I'm sure one day I'll be forced to overcome my fear of voice recognition techology and switch to that, but for now I'm happy with my laptop.

Complete list of questions under the cut )
naomi_jay: (cliff red woman)
*I'm sure I've used that as a blog title before.

Anyway. My arm freaking hurts. I was really good all weekend, doing nothing more strenuous than lifting a wine glass and the occasional piece of chocolate to my mouth. I may have been online yesterday, but I swear I did all my surfing one-handed. And despite this I am in a world of pain today. I feel really fuzzy-headed with it. Clearly I have not yet recovered from the Wild marathon last week, and thus will not be getting back to work on Demonised tonight. Or indeed, for the rest of the week.

I've yet to discover anything that really, completely gets rid of the pain. I have exercises, as provided by the physiotherapist I saw last year, and I have various work-break programmes on my computer, wrist braces, balms, gels, creams, and pain killers. But none of it works for long. I know that. The therapist told me this was not a curable problem, only a manageable one. That doesn't stop me being frustrated! Because it's not just typing or writing that's the problem; it's lifting, carrying, having a bag on my shoulder, reaching out to hand things to people, sitting with my arms crossed, sitting with my arm straight out, standing with my arm at my side, etc etc... Basically everything I do hurts. I don't do anything that doesn't involve my right arm, except possible wangst about how much it hurts.

Ugh. I hate how much I whine about this.

I'm leaving work early today, since there's somebody here to cover the desk, and planning an evening of little-to-no movement. Hopefully tomorrow it'll be better. Le sigh.
naomi_jay: (thrilling)
So. Yes. I finished the rewrite of Wild, again. This is getting to be a bad habit. It's now safely in my Fearless Agent's hands, leaving me time to recover from the whole process. I do mean recover - in the past five days I've written around 22k, culminating in a 7k marathon last night. So my arm is in absolutely agony this morning... what I can feel of it, anyway. I woke up in the middle of the night with both arms numb, which panicked me a little bit and made sleeping very uncomfortable. My left arm is fine this morning, except for the odd twinge in my index finger, but my right arm? My finger tips are numb and the rest just bloody hurts.

It was totally worth it though. I felt incredibly relieved and smug when I woke up this morning and remembered that I'd finished. I mean, I don't know if any of it is good or not, but I never do. But regardless, it's done. Yay! *all rise, commence rejoicing* And we can cross that task off the Accountability List.

Writing Life (in no particular order)

1. Finish Earthbound for Queer Light anthology
2. Rewrite Wild for my Fearless Agent. First three chapters must be done by 23rd March. Shouldn't be a problem. Obviously since I made this list, I've rewritten pretty much the entire novel. I don't think there's a single word remaining from the original draft except maybe "Lizzie" and "werewolves."
3. Finish Demonised, an Ethan Banning novella, for submission to Damnation Books.
4. Start on BAD DOGS, the sequel to SILVER KISS.
5. Continue with Afterburn, the sequel to AFTERLIFE.

So, according to my shiny list, Demonised is next, but I'm taking the rest of the week off writing wise to let my arm recover. In the mean time, here's an awesome review of AFTERLIFE for you to enjoy!

Next?

Feb. 16th, 2010 02:26 pm
naomi_jay: (looks like lizzie)
Since Wild is with my Fearless Agent and SILVER KISS is almost ready to step out into the big bad world, my mind has inevitably turned to the next project. (It's taken me like, a week to get over Wild. When I finished the rewrite I swore I'd never write anything again and everything could just go to hell because dammit, my arm really hurt. Still does, but anyway).

Anyway. There are a couple of certs - namely the two sequels to SILVER KISS. I'm undecided what order to do them in. Both will take Ayla and Shannon out of town. Probably Bad Dogs will be next since the events follow on quite closely from SILVER KISS. That's set Oop North. The third book is set in France and is currently called Moonstruck, but I'm edging towards changing that to something along the lines of Stone Touch. All will become clear eventually, I promise.

I've also got the sequel to AFTERLIFE, called Afterburn despite the indigestion connotations. That's not contracted, but Damnation Books did express an interest in seeing it, and I definitely want to write it.

I've been working on and off on a novella called Earthbound for a QueeredFiction anthology. The deadline is already gone (it passed whilst I was feverishly writing about junkie werewolves and homeless ghouls), but I'm going to finish it up and inquire anyway.

There's that zombie-military thing too. I'm currently reading Zombie CSU for research. There's also a YA idea floating around, although I've never written YA before so I'm not sure about that one.

And always, always, there's the rewrite of Scarlett's first novel. Sigh. Always. One day I will do it, I will make it awesome and it will take over the world. And then you'll all see *shakes fist skyward*

And all of this is why I need to escape this damnable dayjob.


naomi_jay: (flying objects)
So. Yes. Last week I finished the rewrite of Wild and sent it off to my Fearless Agent. Should be hearing back from her this week, and I'm crossing all my crossables that there will be no more rewrites! Or at least no major ones - I can think of about a zillion things I'd like to change already, so I'm sure Fearless Agent will find them too. But I can hope. I said before that I've never worked as hard on anything as I have on Wild, and whilst I'm prepared to keep working if need be, I'd sure like not to have to...

... Mostly because the heavy writing sessions involved in finish it have caused my arm problems to flare up. Curse you, damaged radial nerve! You keep me awake at night with your intense achy-stingy painy pain, and I hate it.

Meanwhile, I've been doing promo stuff for SILVER KISS. Blog posts, mostly, but also some other secret stuff that I'm not at liberty to disclose yet, but it involved much cursing and flailing on my part. I'm sure it'll be worthwhile - I'm so excited about all the stuff that's planned for SILVER KISS's release! I feel really lucky to have so much support and energy behind the book. So stay tuned for more exciting developments...

No Go Nano

Oct. 11th, 2009 01:09 pm
naomi_jay: (squid man)

So it's that time of year again, with everyone gearing up for Nanowrimo and getting excited about pub meets and write-ins and so forth. Everyone on El Jay is asking what we're all going to be working on, and I'm just gurning because I can't do it. I want to, every year I really want to do Nano, but I can't. It's not the word count at all. I can easily knock out 2 -3k in a couple of hours if I put my mind to it. But I can't do it consistently every day because of my bloody arm.

I've been having twinges ever since the weather turned colder, and am back to using Work Rave for rest breaks at work, which is always a bad sign. I'm also back doing all the nerve gliding exercises the physiotherapist showed me back in March. Sigh. I wish I could used voice recognition, but I hate it. I just HATE it. And I know loads of writers who swear by it, but I cannot for the life of me get my head round it. Maybe it's just that Vista has crap voice rec? Anyway, I hate it with the hatred of a thousand burning suns.

So I'm not even going to attempt Nano this year, after two years of Fail. I'm going to do [community profile] picowrimo instead. Last time I did it, in 2006, I wrote a 5k short story that got published in Midnight Times ezine. This year I'm planning a slightly more ambitious target than 5k. I just can't decide what.

Edits for AFTERLIFE are due in on November 15th, but until I see what needs to be done, I can't judge how much time they'll take me. I have an idea for a short story (maybe 10 - 15k) for one of QueeredFiction's upcoming anthologies that I would love to write. I'd also like to get cracking on the sequel to AFTERLIFE (not set on a title yet, but Blood Legacy is the one I keep coming back to. Sounds very generically "sexy vampire" though).

In any case, as soon as I've decided I shall hop along to the [community profile] picowrimo community and announce my target, thus creating the necessary peer pressure to make sure I actually do it. And now the inevitable: Who's doing Nano? What are you working on?
naomi_jay: (butterfly)
Look what Amazon recommended me! I totally want this boxset. I need it. I need these films. I mean! Octopus 1 and 2?! Why do I not already own this?!

In actual news, I've been working on the Super Sneaky Secret Side Project tonight. Not added much because my arm is sore, but I'm happy with the progress I have made.



6039 / 15000 words. 40% done!

I can't wait for my week off next week when I can really crack on with this and SILVER KISS for a few sweet, uninterrupted days. Just have to slog through a few more work days first...
naomi_jay: (halo girl)
Things of note:

1. I'm done with the emo thing today. I had some brilliant news yesterday that I will share asap, and that lifted me right out of my "woe is me" mood.

2. I'm off to my parents this weekend for an internet-free few days of hardcore writing on Silver Kiss. I've done a lot this week, had two very productive write-ins, and I'm determined to do a lot more before the week's over.

Which ties into my next point:

3. OMG, I woke up at 4am this morning in agony. FLAMING, SEARING AGONY. I must have fallen asleep on my bad arm. It was cramped, I had the worst pins and needles ever, I couldn't move my fingers, and from my shoulder to my elbow, everything was numb. I had a complete freak-out and leapt out of bed waving my arm around like a maniac to try and get the feeling back. But it kept going numb despite my proactive methods. I spent a good ten minutes just massaging it and stretching and eventually reduced my panic from "OMG, AM I GOING TO HAVE TO AMPUTATE IT?!" to "this is pretty damn uncomfortable."

So yeah, not great. I have overdone it this week and I've been slack at using my voice recognition, because me yelling at my laptop doesn't make for a happy, productive atmosphere for the other writers at the write-ins.
naomi_jay: (ocean girl)
I managed a bit over 2k today before my arm gave out. I've got to start doing my exercises regularly, and not just when I'm in pain. It's harder to stay motivated without the physiotherapist checking my progress.



3338 / 60000 words. 6% done!

That's chapter one done and chapter two started. I'm now going to curl up with a book and wait for ice cream to happen to me.
naomi_jay: (fire breathing)
Thanks to everyone who offered encouragement and support yesterday :) I definitely needed it, but now I've had my mope, it's back to work. I've got four work-free days ahead of me and I intend to use them to the max. The plan:

1. Lots of writing
2. Lots of applying for jobs
3. Visiting Gran
4. Rinse and repeat

We'll see how it works out....

In slightly-related news, I had my lasy physio session yesterday. Well, technically the last, in that Laura can't really do anything more for me, but I can ring up and scream in pain and get another appointment if need be. Basically, I've got all the tools I need to deal with my radial nerve problem, and now I need to build up the strength in my arm and keep doing the exercises. Like, forever. Because although the problem can be managed, it can't really be cured as long as I'm in a desk job. Which I probably always will be. Although not the one I'm currently in, if I can help it.
naomi_jay: (liz)

I just got back from my second physiotherapy appointment. I'm in less pain that last time, probably because I haven't been at work all day. Laura the physio thinks it was so bad last week because my arm was already aggravated from general use at work.

Anyway, she did some more tests, studied my posture and decided that it's probably my radial nerve which is causing the problem. As you can see in my scientific diagram, the radial nerve affects the whole arm. Super. She also noted that I carry a lot of tension in my shoulders and neck, and set me up with a heat pack for ten minutes, which was amazing. I need of those for at home.

She gave me a few stretches to do and packed me off. Back next Monday. I think a big step forward in combating my problems would be having a desk. I mean, I do have a desk, but there's a fish tank on it. I think if I didn't do all my writing sitting on my bed or the sofa, my back would probably be less stiff and there'd be less tension all over. I'm not sure if there's room for another desk in my bedroom though, and definitely not room in the living room. This needs careful consideration.
naomi_jay: (stewie)
I hope someone told you they loved you today. But do remember that your love is not as good as Laurell K Hamilton's. For the record, nobody has yet told me they love me today, and I put this down to me not being LKH.

On the other hand, I have added 4k to Death for the Born since I started redrafting it. this continues my tradition of making my novels bigger by editing them. It's now at a respectable 77k instead of a slightly wimpy 73k, with more "editing" to be done. Yes, I hurt. Yes I'm not supposed to be typing today. But fuck you, repetitive strain injury. Fuck. You. I've got agents to query.
naomi_jay: (the lords' ways)
So I went to the physiotherapist yesterday and spent 45 minutes answering seemingly random questions. It's like, I went there because my arm hurts ALL THE FREAKING TIME, and she was asking me if I'd ever had cancer. Stuff like that just freaks me out. I'm too neurotic for it. I'm all like, "no, why? Is it arm cancer?"

Then she did a load of stretching exercises with me to try and pinpoint exactly what the problem is. Sort of moving my arm around and saying "does this hurt? Does it hurt now? How about now? More? Better? Worse?" And me going, "yes. Yes. Yes! YES! YES THAT HURTS MORE!"

She came to the conclusion that the problem crossed all my joints and it wasn't clear where the source of my pain was. Really, if she'd listened to my "it hurts everywhere" mantra, we would have saved a lot of time. I have to go back next week for more tests. Until then she's suggested I try to avoid using my wrist brace because it might lead to loss of movement in my wrist. So now I'm paranoid about getting carpal tunnel syndrome. And all the stretching we did yesterday just makes my arm ache like hell today.
naomi_jay: (liz)
If you're planning to spend four hours on Sunday evening slouched in bed typing away, with no back support, no wrist support, and you can't be bothered to use voice rec, don't be surprised if. come Monday, your back, neck, and wrist aches unbearably.

PS - The word count you achieved makes all your pain totally not worth it, too.
naomi_jay: (cobra commander)



I can't help but worry that taking part in Nanowrimo is a bad idea when my RSI is currently at that "OHGODTHEPAIN!" stage most of the time. The rest of the time it's just the "why does my wrist keep clicking and why are my fingers numb?" stage. Trying to write 50k in 30 days seems a foolish idea, all things considered. I am on the NHS waiting list for physiotherapy, but judging from past experience, it would probably be quicker to chop my arm off and replace it with a hand-crafted wooden limb than it would be to get the NHS to do anything about it. Sadly carpentry is not amongst my talents.

However! I am determined to give it a shot. I have my wrist brace. I have a steady supply of painkillers. Most importantly, I have a reward of tasty, tasty sushi to look forward to. We shall see...
naomi_jay: (sex scene)
I sorted out extra accommodation for RNA. Huzzahs all round! And my stay there may be further aided by the fact that I'm having my wisdom teeth taken out the week before and will probably need a week off work after that. In theory, that means I can travel to Chichester at my leisure, swollen and bruised face notwithstanding. Sometimes Fate does provide for me. Although, I have to say, I'm kind of dubious about the whole thing. This is an approximation of the referral form I was shown at the hospital:

Reason for removal of wisdom teeth: Prevent pain, infection to gums.

Possible after-effects of removal: Pain, infection to gums.

Not promising...

On the plus side, I finally figured out what to do with Harris' mistress and it's awesome! And will involve a fight at a funeral, which will be awesome! In a grave, dignified manner, of course.

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