Well, I’m back

Image–roses at Arlington, Oregon, taken by Joyce Reynolds-Ward

Well, I’m back.

I didn’t expect to be away from writing a blog post for so long, but I’ve had my head down writing madly so I could finish The Cost of Power trilogy.

There’s also been life stuff going on. The sort of thing that comes along with aging and all that not-so-entertaining stuff involving doctors. Not life-threatening, and the health stuff wasn’t me, but the spouse. Thankfully, so far it seems to be settling down. However, it was a wakeup call. Add to that the news that the wife of our college roommate found him collapsed in their greenhouse without a pulse. He was revived, but…incidents like that happening to friends are the kind of thing that make you think once you hit that retirement age.

Especially when long-term household items decide it’s time to be replaced. The mattress. The tack room lock and the floor on the horse trailer. The old Subaru. Not fun when you’re driving up Cabbage Hill and the darn car won’t go over 45 mph even when floorboarded and in third gear. I’ve decided that I am never ever going to say “well I think that’s the last of THAT item I’ll ever buy” because…yeah. It doesn’t work that way.

So. A lot of life going on. Plus the realization that trying to write a trilogy, juggle several serial fiction pieces, and write Substack blogs just plain burned me out. It hasn’t been that I haven’t been thinking about writing blogs, it’s been more of a matter that I just haven’t had the energy to write them. Or work on fabric art. Or do much beyond basic housework plus horse training and maintenance.

Nonetheless, the last book of the trilogy is finished. Now the fun times begin. I have nearly a thousand pages of manuscript printed out and ready for the big continuity edit, after going through a preliminary line edit. I’ve been working on this trilogy for—let me think—something like a year and a half? Two years?

I don’t know if it’s finishing the trilogy at last or what, but all of a sudden it feels like I can actually get things done. While I attended the virtual side of the Nebulas last weekend, I didn’t feel as tired out as usual after a convention, and I actually have been accomplishing things this week, including a major office muckout and rearrangement. Now I feel ready to attack editing the trilogy.

That’s going to be a major job. While I plotted out The Cost of Power by writing chapter synopses, about halfway through the second book I started getting some twists I hadn’t expected. I anticipate that something like this will occur and usually account for it in my writing process, but by the time I got to the last third of the third book, I started realizing that the story had turned in an even bigger fashion. Therefore, the continuity edit. However, even with the last pieces, it’s not going to be a monster rewrite. More along the lines of dropping breadcrumbs so that the last part of the trilogy doesn’t come out of nowhere. All the same, I’m probably going to fall back on one of my tried-and-true editing processes, using a scene matrix to ensure that I haven’t left something out.

More than that, I may (yet again, damn it), have another piece to write about in this world. The Cost of Power is most definitely science fantasy contemporary western with a relationship. One of the backstory pieces that is now nagging at me to be written is a straightforward prequel involving high fantasy and a multiverse. But it might need to sit on the back burner and simmer for a while. I don’t think it’s going to be a big story—at most, a novella.

So things are pretty much plugging along. The first book of The Cost of Power will release on August 20th, the second three weeks later, and the third two weeks after that. I plan to issue an ebook omnibus edition in November which will include snippets that are currently only available to my newsletter subscribers (which if you want to subscribe and get access, the signup is here). Those of you getting this blog post by email will also have access to the first snippet, available here. But the process right now is that newsletter folx get the first chance at it, then the email blog recipients. We’ll see after that.

Whew. Getting back into the swing of things is…a challenge. But I’m up for it. There’s a lot of stuff I can write about the horses—Marker is proceeding right along in training. He and Mocha are currently on summer pasture, and he’s being indoctrinated into The Mocha Way. The old mare is enjoying her well-earned retirement and looks good this summer.

That’s it for now…hopefully I’ll be getting back to blathering on a more regular basis.

Oh, and if you’re interested in tossing a coin to your scribbler, the horses would like some cookies. Buy me a coffee here.

Until the next time…which I promise won’t be so long!

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