Saturday, February 3, 2018

Dragons Run My Life Cover Revals

As promised, probable covers for the first four Dragons Run My Life stories, along with blurbs for each. Opinions and suggestions in the comments are requested, welcomed and appreciated.


Might have looked better if Blogger would allow changes to text, like center alignment, but not today, I guess.

Book One - The Faux Princess
Description:


A muddy walk to the store earns Tanial a headache and a not to be denied opportunity to stand in for a dead Princess.

Because Liam’s man killed the Princess instead of preparing her for examinations to confirm her as suitable for marriage to the King, Liam is most anxious to make amends. A whisper in his ear sends him across Tanial’s path; he recognizes her uncanny similarity to the dead princess and instantly delivers Tanial’s headache from atop his horse.

Being wed to the King of the far-off land excites Tanial not nearly as much as Liam does during their ride to his camp.

To survive to love Liam, Tanial must befriend her new sister, dupe the King’s examiners, avoid an assassin and endure a journey of five hundred leagues on horseback.

The Faux Princess is the first book in a multi-book series set on a continent on the planet Toile. The desire to understand their world and the taboos they live with drives them. Of course, they have responsibilities, too: their families, their friends and compatriots. Conflicts, assassins, ordinary day-to-day tasks all must be managed; none can be set aside for the quest.

The dragons speak to a few, without revealing their plans, or especially their nature. Their guidance, to use the term loosely, lacks any rationale; the few must make their own choices whether to accept the advice or not. Predictably, they follow when the direction given matches their instincts and hopes. How the dragons will react when their words are not heeded remains to be seen. Perhaps they know well enough how to couch their counsel so it will always be palatable.

Family, friends, country and joy of discovery drive the actions of those we see; the others are equally driven, perhaps to seek the same goals.

The Faux Princess Cover:




Amerith - A Dragons Run My Life Short Story

Description


The girl Amerith grows up to be a skilled thief and then a world-class assassin, named after her profession, Dunver, until she takes the title, name and role of Mistress Warden Marshal to the Princesses of Lindebalgh. Her mentor and her debt will return, to wreak havoc on the Warden’s life.

Amerith is a short side trip that adds to the experience of Toile and its characters. It is best read between Book One, The Faux Princess, and Book Two, The True Princess.


Amerith Cover:

 







 




























Book Two - The True Princess

Description


King Esben travels to seal his alliance with the King of Aberystrad through the marriage of his daughter, Princess Miriajona, to that King. Esben’s youngest daughter, Princess Jenoele, unwillingly accompanies him and his Queen. To gain some benefit from her reluctant trip, the ten-and-a-half-year-old princess elects to confront her older sister, Saitanne, about her sudden appearance two otto’dars earlier. That encounter ends with less drama than Jenoele expects, but her decision marks her as prey for assassins seeking red-headed princesses.

Larger phenomena are about to change her life even more than the assassins.
She just wants to go home.

Miriajona is caught in the whirlwind of dresses, gowns and fittings in preparation for the wedding, and prevented from being alone with the King.
She just wants to love him.

Tanial leads her motley team of… well, friends is best. She has yet to learn they can’t all be friends.

The True Princess Cover





Book Three - The Voyages Home

Description


Jenoele rides with her Regent Tanial and a few trusted friends to Rendekebing and the Lindebalgh palace. With her da, the King, dead in the waters off the coast, she and Tanial will take the throne and control of Lindebalgh, and await their sister Miri, ready for a dual coronation party.

Miri and Rhion intend a peaceful, boring thir’dar trip from Sianel Dnias to Rendekebing. That’s their plan.

Their plan works out better than Jenoele’s; they aren't kidnapped by a revenge-seeking former minister.

However, at least three others ride north after them with different goals in mind.

The Voyages Home is the third of the Dragons Run My Life series. Will Jenoele and Tanial actually arrive home… Do they know where ‘home’ is?

The Voyages Home Cover

 


Artwork is all © Howard David Johnson.

Friday, February 2, 2018

So, Is the New Year Better?


Not so far, but it's not worse, either. Well, except in Washington, but this isn't a political blog or rant.

Most of my writing in January landed in The Voyages Home. I’d hoped to finish it in January, but, no. I'm looking at about 125-130K words I think. The end game is taking longer to play out than I’d expected; I’ll have to wait to see how much seems superfluous in the coming days and weeks. Once I finish.

Latest updates on top. Older ones are below.

Updated  February 2, data from 31 January.

Here’s January’s update:
As of (2/1), the WIPs, along with my plans for them, are:
   •    The Faux Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book One): 111 909 words. No major change.
    •    The True Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book Two): 103 135 words. A few changes. New version now in the hands of my reader, when she gets to it.
   •    The Voyages Home (Dragons Run My Life, Book Three): 94 601 words; Continuing this draft. Still incomplete, two threads to tie up.
    •    Blood Moon (A Beckie and Ian story) formerly Princess: 50 924 words. No change. Obviously not complete.
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 110 405 words. Added and subtracted per my reader’s comments. Returned the changed pieces for her review on January 28.

From last month, here’s December’s update.
:
As of (1/1), the WIPs, along with my plans for them, are:
   •    The Faux Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book One): 111 140 words. No major change.
    •    The True Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book Two): 102 272 words. Comments on old draft received early in December, triggering another round of revisions, which continued through Dec 15. New version now (Dec 16) in the hands of my reader, when she gets to it.
   •    The Voyages Home (Dragons Run My Life, Book Three): 59 038 words; draft underway. Not done by mid-December, but one major point has been hit.
    •    Blood Moon (A Beckie and Ian story) formerly Princess: 50 924 words. Reduction in word count is due to leaving out double counted sections and annotations. A few words, but not much. Obviously not complete.
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 108 027 words. Got my reader’s comments back on Dec. 15th, and began addressing them.

Here’s January’s work. The Y-T-D total is 37 136 words through January 31.





What happened in January, then?

While I wrote 37 136 words in twenty-four days (not quite 1550 words per day for writing days), on the other seven days I read or, for four or five of them, worked on formatting pdf files for Faux Princess and True Princess and Amerith for CreateSpace. Originally, I’d hoped to have Voyages Home complete, to do those four at once, but later today, I’ll shove the three into CS’s interface and see if they approve them. If you’re interested, cover reveals for the four will post tomorrow if all goes well, now that I’ve actually gotten permission to use the art.

As I’ve said, I’d thought to finish Voyages. I did finish the overall planning and many of the details (most of which come while I write), and that was done on schedule… actually a couple days early, on the eighth of January. The planning for Blood Moon, however, still hasn’t finished, and will probably wait til Voyages is complete, near the end of February. That draft should follow by the ides of March.

The revisions to Low Places were finished and have been sent to my reader. She still has True Princess for reading; I’ll hope it’s worthy of a more positive response than the first draft.

I have done some reading for my reader. She writes at the edges between fantasy and science fiction, and you can find her books, all in The Lillith Chronicles, at her author page, Carol Buhler Author

As always, comments and opinions welcome.

The spreadsheet: Created by Svenja. See svenjaliv.com for more info and resources, including a free online word meter. All images are © 2011-2016 SvenjaLiv (http://svenjaliv.com).

Earlier updates:
As of (12/1), the WIPs, along with my plans for them, are:
   •    The Faux Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book One): 111 491 words. No major change.
    •    The True Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book Two): 104 131 words; minor changes in draft. Revisions finished October 23. My reader has her own life to worry about, so I haven’t sent it.
   •    The Voyages Home (Dragons Run My Life, Book Three): 52 045 words; draft underway. Parts of this story went very well; others were slower. Still have a couple major points to hit.  I still hope for mid-December to have the draft complete.
    •    Blood Moon (A Beckie and Ian story) formerly Princess: 54 313 words. I’ve committed to a direction but haven’t put much flesh on those bones. I will probably finish the draft of Voyages before coming back to Blood Moon, which will put it into January.
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 107 954 words; haven’t heard back since my reader has a life.

As of (9/1), the WIPs along with my plans for them, are
   •    The Faux Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book One): 111 490 words. No change.
    •    The True Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book Two): 106 324 words; draft is complete. On 9/1, received comments back from reader; problems. I’ve started a new version as a result. Plan for revisions to be done in September.
   •    The Voyages Home (Dragons Run My Life, Book Three): 22 255 words; draft underway, although on hold for now,  til True Princess is revised, as the changes will affect it as well.  I hope for mid-October to have the draft complete.
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 508 words, the first breakthrough occurred; now to put some meat on the bones. Plan to finish draft in October.
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 109 912 words; sent the first half (57 000+ words) back on 8/15 to see if the issues have been addressed. On hold til those comments are back.
    •   Amerith (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 19 900 word; no change.
    •   Rhion Prequel (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 6 042 words; no change.
Amerith and Rhion have had no attention paid them; I’ll drop them from the updates.

As of (8/1), the WIPs along with my plans for them, are
    •    The Faux Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book One): 111 490 words. Took care of the few questions and said, that’s done.
    •    The True Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book Two): 106 324 words; draft is complete. Reread and revised, and sent to beta reader on August 5.
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 49 336 words, the understanding of where the story is isn’t complete.
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 104 578 words; Received comments back, fixing is started.
    •   Amerith (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 19 900 words; last questions answered and it’s done.
    •   Rhion Prequel (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 6 042 words; done.

As of (7/1), the four WIPs along with my plans for them, are
    •    The Faux Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book One): 111 343 words. To my reader on June 6; comments back and revisions complete. A few more q for the reader, and this one will be finished.
    •    The True Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book Two): 94 750 words; draft is not complete. Two more scenes; I can see the end. The title has changed because I liked where the characters ran off to. Update July 6: Draft complete.
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 49 370 words, began understanding where the story is; draft complete by July 30,
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 100 178 words; almost no work. First read to beta by July 6.
    •   Amerith (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 19 848 words; sent to beta June 6. Comments received and incorporated; Q’s back to reader by July .6
    •   Rhion Prequel (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 6 018 words; sent to beta June 6. Comments received and incorporated.

As of 6/1, the four WIPs along with my plans for them, are
    •    The Faux Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book One): 115 518 words. Did the revisions, but need to reread, then to my reader by June 5
    •    The Voyages Home (Dragons Run My Life, Book Two): 62 162 words; draft is not complete. Now plan by June 30.
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 000 words, no change; draft complete by July 30,
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 99 247 words; corrected most significant problems; revising. First read to beta by June 15,
    •   Amerith (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 19 848 words; proof and send to beta by June 5, and
    •   Rhion Prequel (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 6 018 words; proof and send to beta by June 5.


As of 5/1, the four WIPs along with my plans for them, are
    •    The Faux Princess: 110 651 words. Found even more holes with the aid of my reader; plug them with the revision to beta by May 15
    •    The Voyages Home: 37 735 words; draft may be complete by May 15, but more likely, the 30th;
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 000 words, no change; draft complete by June 30,
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 99 053 words; found significant problems; revising. First read to beta by May 30,
    •   Amerith (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 19 854 words; proof and send to beta by May 15, and
    •   Rhion Prequel (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 6 013 words; proof and send to beta by May 15.

As of 4/1, the four WIPs along with my plans for them, are
    •    The Faux Princess: 108 807 words. Went over notes from my reader. Revisions complete by April 20; return to beta by April 30.
    •    The Voyages Home: 13834 words; draft complete by May 15;
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 000 words, no change; draft complete by April 30, and
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 96 958 words; proof and send to beta by April 15.

As of 3/1, the four WIPs, along with my plans for them, are:
  •    The Faux Princess: 90 954 words was sent to beta reader Jan 30; notes came back by 2/12 and have lain waiting for Low Places to be complete. Goal is to have it ready to publish by 3/31.
    •    The Voyages Home: 8382 words; draft complete by April 30;
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 000 words, no change; draft complete by April 30, and
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 81 365 words; failed to complete draft by Feb 15. The goal is now to have the draft by 3/15, and on to my long suffering beta reader by 3/31.


As of 2/1, the four WIPs along with my plans for them, are:
    •    The Faux Princess: 90 956 words, sent to beta reader Jan 30;
    •    The Voyages Home: 2500 words, no change; draft complete by April 30;
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 000 words, no change; draft complete by April 30, and
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 65 932 words, still on track to complete draft by Feb 15.

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

The New Year! (Can hardly be worse than 2017)


I got some work done during December, though most of it doesn’t show up in word counts. Editing, providing suggestions and comments on my reader’s own work and reading for fun.

For the year overall, a couple of screenshots are below the December Word Tracker image.

Updated: 2 January, data from 1 January.

Since Blogger won’t properly handle an internal link, I’ve reordered the updates to put the latest on top. Older ones are below the text.


Here’s December’s update:
As of (1/1), the WIPs, along with my plans for them, are:
   •    The Faux Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book One): 111 140 words. No major change.
    •    The True Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book Two): 102 272 words. Comments on old draft received early in December, triggering another round of revisions, which continued through Dec 15. New version now (Dec 16) in the hands of my reader, when she gets to it.
   •    The Voyages Home (Dragons Run My Life, Book Three): 59 038 words; draft underway. Not done by mid-December, but one major point has been hit. Outline to be complete by 1/10; draft by the end of January.
    •    Blood Moon (A Beckie and Ian story) formerly Princess: 50 924 words. Reduction in word count is due to leaving out double counted sections and annotations. A few words, but not much. Obviously not complete. Outline for the end to be finished by 1/15; hope to have the draft by end of February.
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 108 027 words. Got my reader’s comments back on Dec. 15th, and began addressing them. Plan to complete them by the fifteenth and return comments and questions to my reader

When we did this last time:

From last month, here’s November’s update.
As of (12/1), the WIPs, along with my plans for them, are:
   •    The Faux Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book One): 111 491 words. No major change.
    •    The True Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book Two): 104 131 words; minor changes in draft. Revisions finished October 23. My reader has her own life to worry about, so I haven’t sent it.
   •    The Voyages Home (Dragons Run My Life, Book Three): 52 045 words; draft underway. Parts of this story went very well; others were slower. Still have a couple major points to hit.  I still hope for mid-December to have the draft complete.
    •    Blood Moon (A Beckie and Ian story) formerly Princess: 54 313 words. I’ve committed to a direction but haven’t put much flesh on those bones. I will probably finish the draft of Voyages before coming back to Blood Moon, which will put it into January.
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 107 954 words; haven’t heard back since my reader has a life.

Here’s December’s work. The Y-T-D total is 321 935 words through December 31.



For those who like graphs:


And the data the graph is based on:

 






For the year, I hit the target (41-42 Kwords per month) the first four months of the year, and close to 75% of the target in three more. September and October were remarkably low; in November, even with two weeks driving not quite 5000 miles and visiting friends and relatives along the way, I still found 60 hours in which to write.


What happened in December, then?

While I wrote 6455 words in five days (208 words per day for the month), the other twenty-five days were spent (3-6 hours per day) editing and revising, which mostly meant deleting words or repurposing ones already there, so I don’t count them. Other days, that time was spent on other peoples’ writing, commenting on my reader’s work or reading, so none of those words really count either.

Finally, I took a fair amount of time doing what for me passes for outlining: using Aeon Timeline to map out the next stages of my characters’ travails. I still need to do more of that for both Voyages and Blood Moon.

I had thought to finish Voyages, but haven’t actually planned, except in a most general sense, how it will end. I will have that outlining done by the tenth, and then, I hope to have the draft done by the end of January. The outline for Blood Moon will be completed after Voyages’, so by the fifteenth or so; the draft should follow by the end of February.

The revisions to Low Places should be complete by the fifteenth also; I don’t expect them to be sufficient to necessitate my reader seeing it all again, merely the excerpts. She also has True Princess for reading; I’ll hope it’s worthy of a more positive response than the first draft.

I expect and hope to have some reading to do for my reader; I enjoy her work and hope she has time to complete the stories in her head, too.

As always, comments and opinions welcome.

The spreadsheet: Created by Svenja. See svenjaliv.com for more info and resources, including a free online word meter. All images are © 2011-2016 SvenjaLiv (http://svenjaliv.com).

Earlier updates:
As of (9/1), the WIPs along with my plans for them, are
   •    The Faux Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book One): 111 490 words. No change.
    •    The True Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book Two): 106 324 words; draft is complete. On 9/1, received comments back from reader; problems. I’ve started a new version as a result. Plan for revisions to be done in September.
   •    The Voyages Home (Dragons Run My Life, Book Three): 22 255 words; draft underway, although on hold for now,  til True Princess is revised, as the changes will affect it as well.  I hope for mid-October to have the draft complete.
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 508 words, the first breakthrough occurred; now to put some meat on the bones. Plan to finish draft in October.
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 109 912 words; sent the first half (57 000+ words) back on 8/15 to see if the issues have been addressed. On hold til those comments are back.
    •   Amerith (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 19 900 word; no change.
    •   Rhion Prequel (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 6 042 words; no change.
Amerith and Rhion have had no attention paid them; I’ll drop them from the updates.

As of (8/1), the WIPs along with my plans for them, are
    •    The Faux Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book One): 111 490 words. Took care of the few questions and said, that’s done.
    •    The True Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book Two): 106 324 words; draft is complete. Reread and revised, and sent to beta reader on August 5.
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 49 336 words, the understanding of where the story is isn’t complete.
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 104 578 words; Received comments back, fixing is started.
    •   Amerith (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 19 900 words; last questions answered and it’s done.
    •   Rhion Prequel (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 6 042 words; done.

As of (7/1), the four WIPs along with my plans for them, are
    •    The Faux Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book One): 111 343 words. To my reader on June 6; comments back and revisions complete. A few more q for the reader, and this one will be finished.
    •    The True Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book Two): 94 750 words; draft is not complete. Two more scenes; I can see the end. The title has changed because I liked where the characters ran off to. Update July 6: Draft complete.
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 49 370 words, began understanding where the story is; draft complete by July 30,
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 100 178 words; almost no work. First read to beta by July 6.
    •   Amerith (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 19 848 words; sent to beta June 6. Comments received and incorporated; Q’s back to reader by July .6
    •   Rhion Prequel (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 6 018 words; sent to beta June 6. Comments received and incorporated.

As of 6/1, the four WIPs along with my plans for them, are
    •    The Faux Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book One): 115 518 words. Did the revisions, but need to reread, then to my reader by June 5
    •    The Voyages Home (Dragons Run My Life, Book Two): 62 162 words; draft is not complete. Now plan by June 30.
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 000 words, no change; draft complete by July 30,
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 99 247 words; corrected most significant problems; revising. First read to beta by June 15,
    •   Amerith (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 19 848 words; proof and send to beta by June 5, and
    •   Rhion Prequel (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 6 018 words; proof and send to beta by June 5.


As of 5/1, the four WIPs along with my plans for them, are
    •    The Faux Princess: 110 651 words. Found even more holes with the aid of my reader; plug them with the revision to beta by May 15
    •    The Voyages Home: 37 735 words; draft may be complete by May 15, but more likely, the 30th;
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 000 words, no change; draft complete by June 30,
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 99 053 words; found significant problems; revising. First read to beta by May 30,
    •   Amerith (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 19 854 words; proof and send to beta by May 15, and
    •   Rhion Prequel (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 6 013 words; proof and send to beta by May 15.

As of 4/1, the four WIPs along with my plans for them, are
    •    The Faux Princess: 108 807 words. Went over notes from my reader. Revisions complete by April 20; return to beta by April 30.
    •    The Voyages Home: 13834 words; draft complete by May 15;
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 000 words, no change; draft complete by April 30, and
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 96 958 words; proof and send to beta by April 15.

As of 3/1, the four WIPs, along with my plans for them, are:
  •    The Faux Princess: 90 954 words was sent to beta reader Jan 30; notes came back by 2/12 and have lain waiting for Low Places to be complete. Goal is to have it ready to publish by 3/31.
    •    The Voyages Home: 8382 words; draft complete by April 30;
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 000 words, no change; draft complete by April 30, and
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 81 365 words; failed to complete draft by Feb 15. The goal is now to have the draft by 3/15, and on to my long suffering beta ready by 3/31.


As of 2/1, the four WIPs along with my plans for them, are:
    •    The Faux Princess: 90 956 words, sent to beta reader Jan 30;
    •    The Voyages Home: 2500 words, no change; draft complete by April 30;
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 000 words, no change; draft complete by April 30, and
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 65 932 words, still on track to complete draft by Feb 15.

As of 1/23, the four WIPs along with my plans for them:
    •    The Faux Princess: 91 300 words, to beta reader by Jan 31;
    •    The Voyages Home: 2500 words, draft complete by April 30;
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 000 words, draft complete by April 30, and
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 50 000 words, draft complete by Feb 15.

Saturday, December 16, 2017

November Update (Late Again!)

Back on track. (written 12/2)

Ha! I say. (written 12/16) Halfway through December before I get this up for you to read! Most of the below was written on first and second of December, just before we returned from the trip mentioned below. And then… My reader cleared some of her obligations and sent me things to work on. The rest of that goes in next month’s update, since so far I haven’t gotten any significant original writing done. The Woe-is-me is done, here’s the update:

I got some work done during November. I hope all of you who did NaNo were successful, no matter how you define it.

Updated 2 December, data from 1 December.

Here’s November’s update:
As of (12/1), the WIPs, along with my plans for them, are:
   •    The Faux Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book One): 111 491 words. No major change.
    •    The True Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book Two): 104 131 words; minor changes in draft. Revisions finished October 23. My reader has her own life to worry about, so I haven’t sent it.
   •    The Voyages Home (Dragons Run My Life, Book Three): 52 045 words; draft underway. Parts of this story went very well; others were slower. Still have a couple major points to hit.  I still hope for mid-December to have the draft complete.
    •    Blood Moon (A Beckie and Ian story) formerly Princess: 54 313 words. I’ve committed to a direction but haven’t put much flesh on those bones. I will probably finish the draft of Voyages before coming back to Blood Moon, which will put it into January.
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 107 954 words; with my reader. Haven’t heard back since my reader has a life.

From last month, here’s October’s update.
As of (11/1), the WIPs, along with my plans for them, are:
   •    The Faux Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book One): 111 490 words. No change.
    •    The True Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book Two): 103 700 words; revised draft is complete. Revisions finished October 23. To be sent to my long-suffering reader as soon as she’s ready.
   •    The Voyages Home (Dragons Run My Life, Book Three): 22 462 words; draft underway. With True Princess revised, I’ve flowed those changes through this story⁠—I think I have them all, ha-ha.  I hope for mid-December to have the draft complete.
    •    Blood Moon (A Beckie and Ian story) formerly Princess: 53 435 words, Started working the breakthrough into the story. Plan to finish draft early in December if not by the time November disappears.
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 107 954 words; sent the finished version to my reader on Oct 13. On hold til those comments are back.

Here’s November’s work. The Y-T-D total is 315 480 words through November 30.



What happened?

While I wrote 31 400 words in eighteen days (1046 words per day for the month), the 3500 words recorded on the thirtieth were actually written over the days marked with no entry, after driving or visiting (two plus week trip to visit relatives and have Thanksgiving with our son). Virtually all were part of Voyages Home. The first voyage home is complete… Now the King has to keep the throne.

As I mentioned last time, I spent some time and effort defining the governments that existed, and the holidays, which then led to the religions people followed, or didn’t follow. That’s incomplete, and will need more work through December.

I had thought to finish Blood Moon, but since I’ve been on a roll in Tanial’s world, I decided to finish her book three instead, and then work on Beckie and Ian. While Blood Moon is set a year before Low Places, I’d like to see my reader’s thoughts on Low Places before I work on the ending of Blood Moon.

I hope to finish Voyages by the end of December, so that hasn’t changed. I do expect Blood Moon to take til the end of January. Of course, I expect and hope to have some reading to do for my reader; I enjoy her work and hope she has time to complete the stories in her head, too.


As always, comments and opinions welcome.


The spreadsheet: Created by Svenja. See svenjaliv.com for more info and resources, including a free online word meter. All images are © 2011-2016 SvenjaLiv (http://svenjaliv.com).

Earlier updates:
As of (9/1), the WIPs along with my plans for them, are
   •    The Faux Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book One): 111 490 words. No change.
    •    The True Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book Two): 106 324 words; draft is complete. On 9/1, received comments back from reader; problems. I’ve started a new version as a result. Plan for revisions to be done in September.
   •    The Voyages Home (Dragons Run My Life, Book Three): 22 255 words; draft underway, although on hold for now,  til True Princess is revised, as the changes will affect it as well.  I hope for mid-October to have the draft complete.
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 508 words, the first breakthrough occurred; now to put some meat on the bones. Plan to finish draft in October.
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 109 912 words; sent the first half (57 000+ words) back on 8/15 to see if the issues have been addressed. On hold til those comments are back.
    •   Amerith (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 19 900 word; no change.
    •   Rhion Prequel (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 6 042 words; no change.
Amerith and Rhion have had no attention paid them; I’ll drop them from the updates.

As of (8/1), the WIPs along with my plans for them, are
    •    The Faux Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book One): 111 490 words. Took care of the few questions and said, that’s done.
    •    The True Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book Two): 106 324 words; draft is complete. Reread and revised, and sent to beta reader on August 5.
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 49 336 words, the understanding of where the story is isn’t complete.
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 104 578 words; Received comments back, fixing is started.
    •   Amerith (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 19 900 words; last questions answered and it’s done.
    •   Rhion Prequel (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 6 042 words; done.

As of (7/1), the four WIPs along with my plans for them, are
    •    The Faux Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book One): 111 343 words. To my reader on June 6; comments back and revisions complete. A few more q for the reader, and this one will be finished.
    •    The True Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book Two): 94 750 words; draft is not complete. Two more scenes; I can see the end. The title has changed because I liked where the characters ran off to. Update July 6: Draft complete.
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 49 370 words, began understanding where the story is; draft complete by July 30,
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 100 178 words; almost no work. First read to beta by July 6.
    •   Amerith (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 19 848 words; sent to beta June 6. Comments received and incorporated; Q’s back to reader by July .6
    •   Rhion Prequel (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 6 018 words; sent to beta June 6. Comments received and incorporated.

As of 6/1, the four WIPs along with my plans for them, are
    •    The Faux Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book One): 115 518 words. Did the revisions, but need to reread, then to my reader by June 5
    •    The Voyages Home (Dragons Run My Life, Book Two): 62 162 words; draft is not complete. Now plan by June 30.
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 000 words, no change; draft complete by July 30,
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 99 247 words; corrected most significant problems; revising. First read to beta by June 15,
    •   Amerith (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 19 848 words; proof and send to beta by June 5, and
    •   Rhion Prequel (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 6 018 words; proof and send to beta by June 5.


As of 5/1, the four WIPs along with my plans for them, are
    •    The Faux Princess: 110 651 words. Found even more holes with the aid of my reader; plug them with the revision to beta by May 15
    •    The Voyages Home: 37 735 words; draft may be complete by May 15, but more likely, the 30th;
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 000 words, no change; draft complete by June 30,
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 99 053 words; found significant problems; revising. First read to beta by May 30,
    •   Amerith (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 19 854 words; proof and send to beta by May 15, and
    •   Rhion Prequel (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 6 013 words; proof and send to beta by May 15.

As of 4/1, the four WIPs along with my plans for them, are
    •    The Faux Princess: 108 807 words. Went over notes from my reader. Revisions complete by April 20; return to beta by April 30.
    •    The Voyages Home: 13834 words; draft complete by May 15;
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 000 words, no change; draft complete by April 30, and
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 96 958 words; proof and send to beta by April 15.

As of 3/1, the four WIPs, along with my plans for them, are:
  •    The Faux Princess: 90 954 words was sent to beta reader Jan 30; notes came back by 2/12 and have lain waiting for Low Places to be complete. Goal is to have it ready to publish by 3/31.
    •    The Voyages Home: 8382 words; draft complete by April 30;
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 000 words, no change; draft complete by April 30, and
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 81 365 words; failed to complete draft by Feb 15. The goal is now to have the draft by 3/15, and on to my long suffering beta ready by 3/31.


As of 2/1, the four WIPs along with my plans for them, are:
    •    The Faux Princess: 90 956 words, sent to beta reader Jan 30;
    •    The Voyages Home: 2500 words, no change; draft complete by April 30;
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 000 words, no change; draft complete by April 30, and
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 65 932 words, still on track to complete draft by Feb 15.

As of 1/23, the four WIPs along with my plans for them:
    •    The Faux Princess: 91 300 words, to beta reader by Jan 31;
    •    The Voyages Home: 2500 words, draft complete by April 30;
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 000 words, draft complete by April 30, and
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 50 000 words, draft complete by Feb 15.

Thursday, November 2, 2017

November 2017 Update

It's been two months since the last update, because I got almost no original words done in September, or October either, for that matter. November, in spite of it being NaNo month, looks like the same.

Why? you may ask.
Hardly an unwarranted question.
Editing and revision, world-building and reading. Did I mention revision? I did write four short reviews and post them (see the last post).
If you recall the last update post, these are all things I expected to do, but I didn’t expect to take quite so long at them. The issue with November is I’ll be afk for over half of it; that alone kept me from attempting NaNo. Finishing 50K words in a month is doable for me, but in 8-10 days? I fear not.

Enough whining.

Updated 2 November, data from 1 November.
Since Blogger won’t properly handle an internal link, I’ve reordered the updates to put the latest on top. Older ones are below the text.


As of (11/1), the WIPs, along with my plans for them, are:
   •    The Faux Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book One): 111 490 words. No change.
   •    The True Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book Two): 103 700 words; revised draft is complete. Revisions finished October 23. To be sent to my long-suffering reader as soon as she’s ready.
   •    The Voyages Home (Dragons Run My Life, Book Three): 22 462 words; draft underway. With True Princess revised, I’ve flowed those changes through this story⁠—I think I have them all, ha-ha.  I hope for mid-December to have the draft complete.
    •    Blood Moon (A Beckie and Ian story) formerly Princess: 53 435 words, Started working the breakthrough into the story. Plan to finish draft early in December if not by the time November disappears.
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 107 954 words; sent the finished version to my reader on Oct 13. On hold til those comments are back.
 Amerith and Rhion have had no attention paid them; I’ll drop them from the updates.

For reference, here was August’s status.
As of (9/1), the WIPs along with my plans for them, are
   •    The Faux Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book One): 111 490 words. No change.
   •    The True Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book Two): 106 324 words; draft is complete. On 9/1, received comments back from reader; problems. I’ve started a new version as a result. Plan for revisions to be done in September.
   •    The Voyages Home (Dragons Run My Life, Book Three): 22 255 words; draft underway, although on hold for now,  til True Princess is revised, as the changes will affect it as well.  I hope for mid-October to have the draft complete.
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 508 words, the first breakthrough occurred; now to put some meat on the bones. Plan to finish draft in October.
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 109 912 words; sent the first half (57 000+ words) back on 8/15 to see if the issues have been addressed. On hold til those comments are back.
    •   Amerith (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 19 900 word; no change.
    •   Rhion Prequel (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 6 042 words; no change.

Here’s August’s work. With no changes since September 1, this is the most recent. Since I’ve not done enough original writing to justify entries, the Y-T-D total is the same as it was: 282 333 words through October 31.





What happened?
I enumerated the factors above. The work I’ve done on Voyages highlighted places where I needed to figure out things in Tanial’s universe; that took time and energy figuring out for example, maps and roads, what governments existed, and holidays, which then led to the religions people followed, or didn’t follow. I do expect Voyages to take til the end of the year.

The plan is to finish Blood Moon, now that I think I’ve found a rational way to finish it. The name change may hint at the direction. Some hours were spent on designing a cover for it as well. I hope to finish it before November’s hours vanish, but it may run into December.

Of course, I expect and hope to have some reading to do for my reader; I enjoy her work and hope she has time to complete the stories in her head, too.


As always, comments and opinions welcome.


The spreadsheet: Created by Svenja. See svenjaliv.com for more info and resources, including a free online word meter. All images are © 2011-2016 SvenjaLiv (http://svenjaliv.com).

Earlier updates:
As of (8/1), the WIPs along with my plans for them, are
    •    The Faux Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book One): 111 490 words. Took care of the few questions and said, that’s done.
    •    The True Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book Two): 106 324 words; draft is complete. Reread and revised, and sent to beta reader on August 5.
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 49 336 words, the understanding of where the story is isn’t complete.
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 104 578 words; Received comments back, fixing is started.
    •   Amerith (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 19 900 words; last questions answered and it’s done.
    •   Rhion Prequel (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 6 042 words; done.

As of (7/1), the four WIPs along with my plans for them, are
    •    The Faux Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book One): 111 343 words. To my reader on June 6; comments back and revisions complete. A few more q for the reader, and this one will be finished.
    •    The True Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book Two): 94 750 words; draft is not complete. Two more scenes; I can see the end. The title has changed because I liked where the characters ran off to. Update July 6: Draft complete.
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 49 370 words, began understanding where the story is; draft complete by July 30,
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 100 178 words; almost no work. First read to beta by July 6.
    •   Amerith (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 19 848 words; sent to beta June 6. Comments received and incorporated; Q’s back to reader by July .6
    •   Rhion Prequel (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 6 018 words; sent to beta June 6. Comments received and incorporated.

As of 6/1, the four WIPs along with my plans for them, are
    •    The Faux Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book One): 115 518 words. Did the revisions, but need to reread, then to my reader by June 5
    •    The Voyages Home (Dragons Run My Life, Book Two): 62 162 words; draft is not complete. Now plan by June 30.
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 000 words, no change; draft complete by July 30,
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 99 247 words; corrected most significant problems; revising. First read to beta by June 15,
    •   Amerith (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 19 848 words; proof and send to beta by June 5, and
    •   Rhion Prequel (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 6 018 words; proof and send to beta by June 5.


As of 5/1, the four WIPs along with my plans for them, are
    •    The Faux Princess: 110 651 words. Found even more holes with the aid of my reader; plug them with the revision to beta by May 15
    •    The Voyages Home: 37 735 words; draft may be complete by May 15, but more likely, the 30th;
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 000 words, no change; draft complete by June 30,
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 99 053 words; found significant problems; revising. First read to beta by May 30,
    •   Amerith (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 19 854 words; proof and send to beta by May 15, and
    •   Rhion Prequel (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 6 013 words; proof and send to beta by May 15.

As of 4/1, the four WIPs along with my plans for them, are
    •    The Faux Princess: 108 807 words. Went over notes from my reader. Revisions complete by April 20; return to beta by April 30.
    •    The Voyages Home: 13834 words; draft complete by May 15;
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 000 words, no change; draft complete by April 30, and
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 96 958 words; proof and send to beta by April 15.

As of 3/1, the four WIPs, along with my plans for them, are:
  •    The Faux Princess: 90 954 words was sent to beta reader Jan 30; notes came back by 2/12 and have lain waiting for Low Places to be complete. Goal is to have it ready to publish by 3/31.
    •    The Voyages Home: 8382 words; draft complete by April 30;
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 000 words, no change; draft complete by April 30, and
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 81 365 words; failed to complete draft by Feb 15. The goal is now to have the draft by 3/15, and on to my long suffering beta ready by 3/31.


As of 2/1, the four WIPs along with my plans for them, are:
    •    The Faux Princess: 90 956 words, sent to beta reader Jan 30;
    •    The Voyages Home: 2500 words, no change; draft complete by April 30;
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 000 words, no change; draft complete by April 30, and
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 65 932 words, still on track to complete draft by Feb 15.

As of 1/23, the four WIPs along with my plans for them:
    •    The Faux Princess: 91 300 words, to beta reader by Jan 31;
    •    The Voyages Home: 2500 words, draft complete by April 30;
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 000 words, draft complete by April 30, and
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 50 000 words, draft complete by Feb 15.

Saturday, October 28, 2017

Four Reviews, All in a Row: Magical Mayhem Series

The Magical Mayhem series, by Emily Martha Sorensen. (Four books so far, with a fifth announced.)

Four stars for this series so far. (The individual reviews will appear at Amazon and at Goodreads, perhaps with minor changes.)

To Prevent World Peace - Four Stars
The Magical Mayhem series is (so far) four books all titled To Prevent
The first is To Prevent World Peace, the second … Chic Costumes, the third … Clear Paths, and the fourth, … Smart Choices. The announced fifth book, I suspect not the last, is To Prevent Warm Welcomes.

Ms Sorensen, a USA Best Selling author, is known for clean stories for middle grade and young adult audiences. This series hits YA targets throughout, in my opinion.

The books are all quick reads, four chapters long, and to be honest, might work better as one whole volume. I read them all in one sitting, and I do tend to binge read series, so your experience might be different. That said, I believe they should be read in order; too much is lost if the reader isn’t aware of previous events in the universe.

Obviously, then, To Prevent World Peace opens the story of Save-the-World magical girl Kendra, her magical girl team buddies, and Chronos, a hands-off mage who doesn’t want to be a villain, but would rather stay home than… than do anything, really. The conflict between good and I-don’t-care shows tantalizing hints, set in the framework of Kendra’s uncompromising belief in her ability to do good.

Until she declares she will be a magical girl no more. “I’ve decided,” Kendra said quietly, “to become… a villain instead.”

Kendra’s next step rocks into the rest of the series.

Ms Sorensen’s writing is crisp and eminently suitable for a YA reader. Or an adult one, for that matter.

While the book sort of completes an arc, for me it really felt too short. I took a star back for that. YMMV, of course.

I read the book on my Macbook Pro using the Kindle for Mac app; it worked perfectly. Also, I opened it on my Kindle Voyage and had no issues. I’d expect no problems using another platform to read. I noticed no typos or other bothersome mechanical problems, just as I expect for Ms Sorensen’s work. The cover calls for a color display, but that’s the only loss moving to a monochrome device, and the contrast allows the Voyage to render it nicely.

I recommend To Prevent World Peace to any reader looking for the beginning of an enjoyable, clean fantasy that doesn’t shy away from real-world problems.

Disclaimer: I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review, which you are reading here. I also purchased a copy, though it was free. This review will appear at Goodreads in slightly different form, and the portion dealing with the series will appear in reviews of the other three books.

To Prevent Chic Costumes - Four Stars
The Magical Mayhem series is (so far) four books all titled To Prevent
The first is To Prevent World Peace, the second … Chic Costumes, the third … Clear Paths, and the fourth, … Smart Choices. The announced fifth book, I suspect not the last, is To Prevent Warm Welcomes.

Ms Sorensen, a USA Best Selling author, is known for clean stories for middle grade and young adult audiences. This series hits YA targets throughout, in my opinion.

The books are all quick reads, four chapters long, and to be honest, might work better as one whole volume. I read them all in one sitting, and I do tend to binge read series, so your experience might be different. That said, I believe they should be read in order; too much is lost if the reader isn’t aware of previous events in the universe.

To Prevent Chic Costumes develops Kendra’s relationship with Chronos. Unwilling might be a good description. The unstoppable force and the immovable object paradox comes to mind; Ms Sorensen develops this aspect of the conflict well.

The costumes of the title allow the introduction of Chronos’ older sister, Rhea, one of the villains Chronos does not wish to be, because Rhea’s a fashion-maker in Paris, and any magical girl-turned-villain needs first and foremost, a suitable costume. The suitable costume must be accompanied by a new lair for the new villain. Chronos makes that sacrifice to be free of Kendra.

As I’ve said previously, Ms Sorensen’s writing is crisp and eminently suitable for a YA reader. Or an adult one, for that matter.

My only, and continuing, complaint is that the story, while it does close an arc, is too short. I’ll not mention it again.

I read this book on my Macbook Pro using the Kindle for Mac app; it worked perfectly. Also, I opened it on my Kindle Voyage and had no issues. I’d expect no problems using another platform to read. I noticed no typos or bothersome mechanical problems, just as I expect for Ms Sorensen’s work. The cover calls for a color display, but that’s the only loss moving to a monochrome device, and the contrast in the cover art allows the Voyage to render it nicely.

I recommend To Prevent Chic Costumes to any reader looking for an enjoyable, clean fantasy that doesn’t shy away from real-world problems, but I strongly suggest you begin with To Prevent World Peace, the first book in the series.

This review will appear at Goodreads in slightly different form, and the portion dealing with the series will appear in reviews of the other three books.

To Prevent Clear Paths - Four Stars
The Magical Mayhem series is (so far) four books all titled To Prevent
The first is To Prevent World Peace, the second … Chic Costumes, the third … Clear Paths, and the fourth, … Smart Choices. The announced fifth book, I suspect not the last, is To Prevent Warm Welcomes.

Ms Sorensen, a USA Best Selling author, is known for clean stories for middle grade and young adult audiences. This series hits YA targets throughout, in my opinion.

The books are all quick reads, four chapters long, and to be honest, might work better as one whole volume. I read them all in one sitting, and I do tend to binge read series, so your experience might be different. That said, I believe they should be read in order; too much is lost if the reader isn’t aware of previous events in the universe.

To Prevent Clear Paths. The new lair, a lovely abode fortunately sans corpses, does include a blonde terror⁠—or mechanical marvel⁠—named Tiffany to add to both Chronos’ and Kendra’s woes. More seriously, the story brings Kendra’s return to her former team, and her first failure as a magical girl turned villain. Since it mirrors an earlier event, we can’t be too surprised; how Kendra’s stoic response plays out is yet to be addressed.

As I’ve said previously, Ms Sorensen’s writing is crisp and eminently suitable for a YA reader. Or an adult one, for that matter. By this, the third book, the development of the plot is proceeding. I can’t see yet how Kendra and Chronos… and the magnificent secondary characters, resolve the overall problem. This is good.

I read To Prevent Clear Paths on my Macbook Pro using the Kindle for Mac app; it worked perfectly. I opened and read it on my Kindle Voyage with no issues. I’d expect no problems using another platform to read. I noticed no typos or other bothersome mechanical problems, just as I expect for Ms Sorensen’s work. The cover calls for a color display, but that’s the only loss moving to a monochrome device. Still the contrast in the cover art allows the Voyage to render it nicely.

I recommend To Prevent Clear Paths to any reader looking for an enjoyable, clean fantasy that doesn’t shy away from real-world problems, especially in this installment, but I strongly suggest beginning with the first book in the series.

This review will appear at Goodreads in slightly different form, and the portion dealing with the series will appear in reviews of the other three books.

To Prevent Smart Choices - Four stars
The Magical Mayhem series is (so far) four books all titled To Prevent
The first is To Prevent World Peace, the second … Chic Costumes, the third … Clear Paths, and the fourth, … Smart Choices. The announced fifth book, I suspect not the last, is To Prevent Warm Welcomes.

Ms Sorensen, a USA Best Selling author, is known for clean stories for middle grade and young adult audiences. This series hits YA targets throughout, in my opinion.

The books are all quick reads, four chapters long, and to be honest, might work better as one whole volume. I read them all in one sitting, and I do tend to binge read series, so your experience might be different. That said, I believe they should be read in order; too much is lost if the reader isn’t aware of previous events in the universe.

To Prevent Smart Choices brings Kendra’s attempt to restore order at Rouen Académie des Saintes (France’s premier magical girl school) and her second failure… as she perceives it. Chronos, in her role as Seer, believes differently.  On a darker note, Rhea uses her knowledge of the Past to determine that Kendra is doing villainous things to Rhea’s villains. Rhea makes her plans. Don’t you love cliff-hangers?

As I’ve said previously, Ms Sorensen’s writing is crisp and eminently suitable for a YA reader. Or an adult one, for that matter.  The plot is proceeding into darker territory; I’m anxious to see just how it will resolve.

I read To Prevent Smart Choices on my Macbook Pro using the Kindle for Mac app; it worked perfectly. Also, I read portions on my Kindle Voyage without problem. I’d expect no issues using another platform to read. I noticed no typos or other bothersome mechanical problems, just as I expect for Ms Sorensen’s work. The cover calls for a color display, but that’s the only loss moving to a monochrome device. Still, the contrast in the cover art allows the Voyage to render it nicely.

I recommend To Prevent Smart Choices to any reader looking for an enjoyable, clean fantasy that doesn’t shy away from real-world problems. However, I strongly suggest beginning with the first book in the series.

This review will appear at Goodreads in slightly different form, and the portion dealing with the series will appear in reviews of the other three books.

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

August Update


Updated 5 Sep, data from 1 September.
Since Blogger won’t properly handle an internal link, I’ve reordered the updates to put the latest on top. Older ones are below the text.


When we did this last time:
As of (9/1), the WIPs, along with my plans for them, are
   •    The Faux Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book One): 111 490 words. No change.
    •    The True Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book Two): 106 324 words; draft is complete. On 9/1, received comments back from reader; problems. I’ve started a new version as a result. Plan for revisions to be done in September.
   •    The Voyages Home (Dragons Run My Life, Book Three): 22 255 words; draft underway, although on hold for now til True Princess is revised, as the changes will affect it as well.  I hope to have the draft complete by mid-October.
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 508 words, the first breakthrough occurred; now to put some meat on the bones. Plan to finish draft in October.
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 109 912 words; sent the first half (57 000+ words) back on 8/15 to see if the issues have been addressed. On hold til those comments are back.
    •   Amerith (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 19 900 word; no change.
    •   Rhion Prequel (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 6 042 words; no change.

For reference, here’s last month’s status.
July: As of (8/1), the WIPs along with my plans for them, are
    •    The Faux Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book One): 111 490 words. Took care of the few questions and said, that’s done.
    •    The True Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book Two): 106 324 words; draft is complete. Reread and revised, and sent to beta reader on August 5.
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 49 336 words, the understanding of where the story is isn’t complete.
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 104 578 words; Received comments back, fixing is started.
    •   Amerith (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 19 900 words; last questions answered and it’s done.
    •   Rhion Prequel (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 6 042 words; done.


Here’s August’s work:





























I wrote 35 025 original words in June, averaging 1130 per day, with thirteen days of writing nothing. That’s about 1945 words each day I did write, which, though less than last month, would still have been fine if I’d kept it going. The short title is at the right. The thirteen days of no writing were mostly spent worrying about the problems in Low Places.


What happened?

The beginning of the month, I tried to see the problems in Low Places and design corrections. That took the first week; making the changes took through to the 15th, when I packaged the partial draft up and mailed it to my reader. Of course, she has her own work and life (I know; imagine that!) and not only that, but she was getting started on True Princess.

While futzing around with Low Places, I reread True Princess once again, and sent it to my reader on August 5.

Bottom line: Most of my WIPs are on hold now, waiting to see where things stand vis a vis the problems. I have the old Princess story to work on (and retitle!), but I think this will be a month of catching up on my TBR list (thank you Fiction River and  StoryBundle!) and working out more backstory and world-building questions in the Faux Princess world.

As always, comments and opinions welcome.

The spreadsheet: Created by Svenja. See svenjaliv.com for more info and resources, including a free online word meter. All images are © 2011-2016 SvenjaLiv (http://svenjaliv.com).

Earlier updates:

June: As of (7/1), the four WIPs along with my plans for them, are
    •    The Faux Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book One): 111 343 words. To my reader on June 6; comments back and revisions complete. A few more q for the reader, and this one will be finished.
    •    The True Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book Two): 94 750 words; draft is not complete. Two more scenes; I can see the end. The title has changed because I liked where the characters ran off to. Update July 6: Draft complete.
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 49 370 words, began understanding where the story is; draft complete by July 30,
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 100 178 words; almost no work. First read to beta by July 6.
    •   Amerith (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 19 848 words; sent to beta June 6. Comments received and incorporated; Q’s back to reader by July .6
    •   Rhion Prequel (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 6 018 words; sent to beta June 6. Comments received and incorporated.

May: As of 6/1, the four WIPs along with my plans for them, are
    •    The Faux Princess (Dragons Run My Life, Book One): 115 518 words. Did the revisions, but need to reread, then to my reader by June 5
    •    The Voyages Home (Dragons Run My Life, Book Two): 62 162 words; draft is not complete. Now plan by June 30.
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 000 words, no change; draft complete by July 30,
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 99 247 words; corrected most significant problems; revising. First read to beta by June 15,
    •   Amerith (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 19 848 words; proof and send to beta by June 5, and
    •   Rhion Prequel (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 6 018 words; proof and send to beta by June 5.


April: As of 5/1, the four WIPs along with my plans for them, are
    •    The Faux Princess: 110 651 words. Found even more holes with the aid of my reader; plug them with the revision to beta by May 15
    •    The Voyages Home: 37 735 words; draft may be complete by May 15, but more likely, the 30th;
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 000 words, no change; draft complete by June 30,
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 99 053 words; found significant problems; revising. First read to beta by May 30,
    •   Amerith (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 19 854 words; proof and send to beta by May 15, and
    •   Rhion Prequel (A Dragons Run My Life Addenda): 6 013 words; proof and send to beta by May 15.

March: As of 4/1, the four WIPs along with my plans for them, are
    •    The Faux Princess: 108 807 words. Went over notes from my reader. Revisions complete by April 20; return to beta by April 30.
    •    The Voyages Home: 13834 words; draft complete by May 15;
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 000 words, no change; draft complete by April 30, and
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 96 958 words; proof and send to beta by April 15.

February: As of 3/1, the four WIPs, along with my plans for them, are:
  •    The Faux Princess: 90 954 words was sent to beta reader Jan 30; notes came back by 2/12 and have lain waiting for Low Places to be complete. Goal is to have it ready to publish by 3/31.
    •    The Voyages Home: 8382 words; draft complete by April 30;
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 000 words, no change; draft complete by April 30, and
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 81 365 words; failed to complete draft by Feb 15. The goal is now to have the draft by 3/15, and on to my long suffering beta ready by 3/31.


January: As of 2/1, the four WIPs along with my plans for them, are:
    •    The Faux Princess: 90 956 words, sent to beta reader Jan 30;
    •    The Voyages Home: 2500 words, no change; draft complete by April 30;
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 000 words, no change; draft complete by April 30, and
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 65 932 words, still on track to complete draft by Feb 15.

As of 1/23, the four WIPs along with my plans for them:
    •    The Faux Princess: 91 300 words, to beta reader by Jan 31;
    •    The Voyages Home: 2500 words, draft complete by April 30;
    •    Princess (A Beckie and Ian story): 51 000 words, draft complete by April 30, and
    •    Low Places (A Beckie and Ian story): 50 000 words, draft complete by Feb 15.