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Posts Tagged ‘Finishing School’

Writing Weekend

Posted by G.A. Matiasz on March 18, 2018

SATURDAY:

We concluded our six week Finishing School group last Wednesday and I’m solo this weekend reworking the long short story/short novelette (~11,150 words). Working title “The Death of David Pickett,” it’s a prequel set in the same universe as my novel 1% Free. I’ve sent it to a couple of readers for first impressions. But I have some revisions already in mind since I declared it complete to wrap up my Finishing School participation. So it’s minimal social media and maximal writing for the next few days at least.

I’ll also be researching editors who do scifi, short fiction, developmental editing, and line editing as the next step. My copyeditor and illustrator will eventually be commissioned for the project, and the whole process will take months before I have a digital “book” I intend to give away for free. The giveaway will be to promote the novel, but it’ll require a coordinated blitz using email and social media, and maybe a multimedia pdf/ebook for maximum effect. I’m thinking July or August.

SUNDAY:

There are a couple of classic writer’s block memes. One is of the writer staring at a blank page or computer screen in frustration while the other is of that same frustrated writer surrounded by piles of crumpled pages while pulling out his or her hair. I’ve never suffered from writer’s block, or from an inability to write when I wanted. For those who do I suggest Pat Schneider’s Amherst Writers and Artists method. It’s a little too hippie-dippie for me, but the non-judgmental workshop style of AWA seems to work for a lot of people.

I had more and more problems writing when I was a raging alcoholic prior to 2010, and for the nine months or so after I stopped drinking when I was clinically depressed. Before I stopped I was also somewhat depressed, and increasingly I skipped writing my monthly columns for Maximum Rocknroll. I didn’t even bother sitting at my computer pretending to write because I had essentially lost interest. In doing CBT-based therapy for my depression after 2010, I promised myself to write my column every month no matter what. And I’ve lived up to that promise.

There’s a big difference between writer’s block and depression. For writer’s block there are appealing writing programs. For depression there are appropriate therapies. The key to any solution is a proper diagnosis of the problem.

Posted in 1% Free, blog, blogger, blogging, G.A. Matiasz, Maximum Rocknroll, writing | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Adventures in Finishing School

Posted by G.A. Matiasz on February 21, 2018

A week into my 6-week Finishing School project, I have re-evaluated. I’d intended to write 2-3,000 words a week for the next 5-6 weeks for a total of 15,000 words in order to augment an already existing 17,000 word novelette into a suitably sized novella. But I’m barely managing 1,000 words a week in a slow and painful process that’s like pulling teeth.

I still intend to work on the novelette, but I have another idea. I have a 10,000 word short story, sort of a prequel to my novel 1% Free, that needs work and maybe another 3-5,000 words. I spent yesterday working on it. The writing is much easier and more straightforward, smoother and cleaner. I’m giving myself 6 months to rewrite, get edited, and format the story into a “book” for digital distribution.

There are scores of digital publishing platforms out there nowadays, unfortunately in a constant state of flux. Pronoun recently went belly-up and Amazon’s ClearSpace is changing it’s terms of services, so I’ll wait until I’m further along with the story to chose the right platform. However, because almost anything can be deemed a “book” in digital publishing terms, the idea is to publish new work in different formats to keep up a digital presence, promote and publicize myself and my previous books, and “grow my brand.” I prefer to call it building my empire, but hey, it’s just a slight difference in emphasis.

I have a 10-11,000 word short story that’s just shy of a novelette. It’s also a prequel to my novel 1% Free, or with minimal rewriting it’s become so. I’ve set it in San Francisco in 2023 and I’ve managed three riots in under fifty pages, double spaced. It’s a long way from finished—dozens of rewrites, a professional editing and copy editing, a snappy cover illustration— before I do a super cheap, entirely digital publication using some the platforms out there. I estimate six months and I’ll link it to boosting the novel.

Posted in 1% Free, blog, blogger, blogging, G.A. Matiasz, self-publishing, The Novel, writing | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Back to the “office”

Posted by G.A. Matiasz on May 6, 2014

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My novel rewrite is progressing in leaps and bounds, so to speak. From February, 2013 through April, 2014, I’ve been taking Cary Tennis‘s Finishing School, a workshop designed to get literary projects done. Last month, I read the whole novel out loud from hard copy, and noted corrections on my printout. Not exactly something I can do in public. With the “reading out loud” done, I’m back to my “office” away from my home office to make the changes in my digital copy in Scrivener. Today, I’m working at an excellent local coffee shop/dining establishment in the Castro called Réveille Coffee (4076 18th St), enjoying a pot of white tea. Here are pictures of my nomadic office. PS–the food here is excellent, if limited!
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Posted in Castro Street, life, San Francisco, The Castro, The Novel | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »