WIP: Friday Spinning Wheels

Hey, wow—a shiny thing.


There are books that I have written but not published. For a long time, I’ve thought of making them public. This week, I came up with a really good reason to publish them and more like them, and I could do it soon. It would mean some changes to the structure of my website, though, because they are unlike my existing books. Today, I got stuck exploring all the options for adding them to my website. I found the Publisher theme and loved it. Then I spent a long time trying to figure out if I could make it work with my existing tools, or clone it. After a while, I broke down what it was doing and found that I am already doing almost all of that, in the way that works best for me. So, lots of running around to get where I currently am. Not a good use of time. I did discover author videos, though, and now I want to do them. Right away. I think I’m also going to publish those books, too. I’ll decide for sure soon, but probably yes.

In there, too, I did get in 10K steps. However, I got stuck in Vampires Versus Comicon in a place where the action and place of the people and plot parts don’t seem to be working. In the end, I still didn’t have it all worked out. Secret Project #1 good some good work in, and I think that’s ready to take off.

Must go faster.

But I’m having fun.

WIP: Another Good Day

Things are coming together.


Morning routine. Daughter off to school. And even though it was her short school day and we were by ourselves for the rest of the afternoon and evening, I got some good work done.

Vampires Versus Comicon

 [Cover of Vampires Versus Comicon: A Novel by T.F. Torrey] In working to resolve the incompatible plots, I realized I was misreading my plan (spreadsheet, actually), jamming the action from two planned chapters into one. When I got that sorted out, I discovered not only that I was further along than I thought I was, but also that the book is on track to be 60 – 70 thousand words, not 100+ thousand. That’s a relief! I still need to crank up my output, but that brings the end a lot closer. And, I had another good day of productivity, not quite pulp speed, but enough to feel good.

I’ll take it.

WIP: A Good Day For Vampires

But not for Trump.


Off to a good start. Morning routine, daughter off to school. Spent too much time distracted by Trump’s debate debacle, but what are you going to do. Had my daughter to myself for the evening, but managed to get back to work after getting her to bed, then worked very late.

Vampires Versus Comicon

 [Cover of Vampires Versus Comicon: A Novel by T.F. Torrey] I had a good day with this book. I didn’t quite make pulp speed, but I got back on track, and I feel good about the next few days, though I’m not sure what will happen. A while back I noted that I had the plot worked out for this book. I was wrong about that. Looking at my notes now, I see that I have two incompatible plots for this part of the book. In addition, my sense of what happens may be different from either of them. No matter. Tomorrow I will figure out what is right and keep on writing.

Now, though, I sleep.

WIP: Still Going Forward

A short day, but on it goes.


Started strong: Morning routine. Daughter off to school without rushing for a nice change. Spent about an hour writing an e-mail to Elizabeth’s school to handle a complicated situation. Got to writing about ten.

Had to stop at one, though. Elizabeth’s class was having a planting day event at school, and they had invited all the parents to help. I was the only one who showed up, and it seemed as though they didn’t expect anyone. The one-hour planting day event was actually only five minutes of dropping seeds in a hole, which seems like a small benefit for suspending work from one to five.

After dinner, endured some distractions trying to combat spam and to stay efficient without compromising my values. More work late, but I was tired. To bed not too late.

Vampires Versus Comicon

 [Cover of Vampires Versus Comicon: A Novel by T.F. Torrey] In word count, it was not a great day for this book, but at least it’s still going forward. I looked over the work done so far with the idea of maybe breaking things out into scenes that fit and flow better, but I’m not sure that can be done without significant rewriting. As always, I remember the work I’ve done as clunky and awkward and lame, but when I actually read it, I think it’s really good. That’s a nice problem to have, I suppose.

If this book does not break out significantly in the next few days, I may have to put it on the back burner to meet the significant deadline I have coming up. I really don’t want to do that, but this is not actually the critical book, and time is flying.

Ever onward.

WIP: Better Again

I seem to be pointed in the right direction again. That’s good.


It was close to a perfect day: Morning routine. Daughter to school. Writing. Picked up daughter. Dinner. Homework. Little more work. Didn’t stay up late like an idiot. Nice.

Vampires Versus Comicon

 [Cover of Vampires Versus Comicon: A Novel by T.F. Torrey] I had a good day with this book. Not great, but good. I didn’t quite make pulp speed, but I got close.

One challenge right now is the constant flow of ideas I have for making things more detailed and fun, and though the book keeps running long already, I can’t resist packing more in when I can. I sure do have a lot of subplots going on in this story. I’ve been trying to keep the book’s construction firmly in the Scene/Sequel structure, but I’m wondering of the whole thing will flow better if I let that go and just write scenes that feel like Scene/Sequel. I think I will give it a try. It would cost me some time to make the changes to what I’ve already done (and even more if I don’t like the change and change back), but it will give me much more flexibility for arranging the subplots and ret-conning all the good ideas I keep getting in the middle of things.

Good problems to have. For a change.


WIP: Surely (But Slowly)

And so it continues…


Daughter to school. Morning routine. Blah, blah, work. Blah, blah, marketing meeting. Dinner, home, tired, slept early.

Vampires Versus Comicon

 [Cover of Vampires Versus Comicon: A Novel by T.F. Torrey] Another typical day. Got some words, but not enough. Another bit character wants to take on a bigger role, and probably will. Plus, I think we’re about to meet some characters I didn’t expect at all (but probably should have). It’s rolling, I just need more focused effort.

I feel like I’m almost there.

WIP: Still Not Fast Enough

If it wasn’t for those deadlines, I would be doing okay.


Got my daughter off to school, then took a two-mile walk along the canal. Morning routine, some food, then got some work done. Unreasonably distracted looking for a better theme for my website, an unproductive waste of time that I wish I could stop doing so often. Picked up my daughter after school, ran an errand, visited the library. Dinner, homework, bath, and another day gone. Re-energized with a long nap, then got back to work.

Vampires Versus Comicon

 [Cover of Vampires Versus Comicon: A Novel by T.F. Torrey] I’m still worried that this story isn’t interesting or exciting enough. It’s a familiar worry, but what if it’s right? Anyway, I made it through Part 1, wherein it is established that someone really is biting people. They don’t know yet that it’s a real vampire, but they’re about to find out.

In interesting development today was that two characters that started in throwaway bit roles, medics who drive the golf cart ambulance and pick up victims, have turned into real characters with story arcs that develop throughout the narrative. I didn’t see that coming, and it’s always fun when that happens.

Anyway, it’s going forward, and I could be happy with the progress if I didn’t have hard deadlines coming up. I need to find a way to go faster.

And I will.

WIP: Making This Interesting

To be clear, the work is going forward, just not as quickly as I would like.


Started the day with my morning routine, then had to stop everything for a doctor appointment. Didn’t get properly to work until around noon. Working didn’t last long, however, because Wednesdays are early-release days at the local schools, so it was time to help my daughter with her homework and get her ready to go get soccer gear. I got some more work done while my wife took my daughter on that errand, but as soon as they got home I had to try to fix my wife’s computer (my daughter spilled water on it somersaulting over the couch) and return the soccer cleats (one pair, both left shoes, two different sizes). Returning from that, I was tired, and we needed to get to bed early because we have to get up super early to take my wife to the airport for a trip to Washington. Whew!

Vampires Versus Comicon

 [Cover of Vampires Versus Comicon: A Novel by T.F. Torrey] I worked through the problems I encountered yesterday, but today something new got in the way: This new vampire, could she jump up and run off when they touch her, or does she sneak away when they’re not looking? Having her jump up would sure be exciting. Alas, that would remove some of the mystery Vance and Allison are trying to solve, which would change everything. It took a while to think this through, but I think my answer is right. Nonetheless, things are about to get very bite-y.

Though I didn’t get as many words in as I would like, I still think I’m in a good place.

Power on!

WIP: Where. Are. The. Vampires?

Okay, so I’m way behind. Again.


It was pretty much a new-normal day: start with morning routine, take the little girl to the school bus, work, lunch, work, get the little girl, homework, dinner, bath, more work. Except also with a major grocery run in there.

Vampires Versus Comicon

 [Cover of Vampires Versus Comicon: A Novel by T.F. Torrey] I did not get the words I wanted to done today, because I had reached a dilemma: I had been working toward two different events that I realized were contradictory: a victim was both going missing and also attacking someone. So, I had to backtrack through the story and look ahead at what I’ve got coming up to figure out what is really going on here. Then, because it’s the end of Part 1, I had to look at what that amounted to to figure out if there is enough drama and if the story still has the right balance. It took a lot of time and brainpower to be sure. Also, I was thinking maybe the story is boring and terrible. Dean Wesley Smith has said (and I think I cited him as saying before) that it’s pretty standard to have these thoughts creep in at about this point in writing a book. The only solution is to keep writing.

While I was trying to figure things out with Vampires, I looked ahead to My Dad and Me and Jack Swilling and Secret Project #1. I have much more done for the secret projects than for My Dad and Me. Maybe I will have to write these in tandem. At any rate, it is good to be able to switch to another project when you get stuck on one.

The real point is to rack up the words, which I didn’t today. I topped out under a thousand words, which is way off the mark. I need to crank this up.

I still believe.