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q-one in review

Happy Easter Long Weekend!

Being the end of March, we are now officially one quarter of the way through the year of twenty-eighteen. How did that happen, right!? I wish I could jump on here and tell you all how fantastically productive I have been in achieving all the goals I set out at the end of 2017. The reality is, however, (and who is surprised?) while I have made progress I’ve still ultimately fallen short of all I intended to do. Winning!

Who feels good about themselves coming into April? Certainly not I but oh well. Progress is progress, no matter how small, right?

Just to review, the goals I laid out for myself in December 2017 were as follows:

  • Finish Torn Sky The Ruptured Sky
  • Build online presence (that means more content for this bad boy!)
  • Decide between traditional and indie publishing options

In summary, Ruptured Sky is not finished; three blog posts hardly count as building an online presence; and I’m no more committed to indie or traditional publishing as I was three months ago.

But not all has been a complete failure.

So, as usual, let’s break it down.

you-should-be-writing
I need this blown up to A1 and plastered on my wall. Source: bobby-nash-news.blogspot.com

What I Wrote

My novel may not be complete and ready to roll out to beta readers as I originally planned, but I have made significant progress and changes that will hopefully fix a lot of the grief I was having. The first major change is perhaps the most obvious: the project has been rebranded to Gardens of War and Wasteland, and the first book will be titled The Ruptured Sky. Why, you ask? Well other projects (albeit not particularly well known ones) already existed with the previous titles–Garden of the Gods: Torn Sky–and I wanted something more original and with more punch. I think I have that now. I hope. Time will tell, I suppose.

Anyway. Ruptured Sky now sits on 69 417 words as of 31.01.18, a whopping 22 854 word growth so far in 2018. Admittedly, after starting the year super strong in Jan and early Feb, things have waned a bit due to being distracted by trash TV and video games BUT MORE ON THAT LATER.

In addition to the omnipresent novel WIP, I’ve also participated in two MadLib Challenges, at the suggestion of the ever-creative Serena W. Sorrell. I plan on doing this every month because the whole exercise has been wildly beneficial to my writing and inspiration in that it gives me a chance to explore different styles and themes outside of the third-person vocalised dark fantasy prison that is Ruptured Sky. (I love my novel. Really, I do. But most some days it makes me want to run from the house screaming.) While I have participated in the challenge twice, only one story has been published on my blog as I am still working on March’s edition. Patience, Young Padawan. Patience.

You can find February’s story, ‘Aunty Mim’s Lost and Found‘ right here.

What I Read

My reading has been off the charts successful this quarter. The combination of great choices and actually following my routine of going to bed at 9.30pm each night to allow for book time before ultimately zonking out thirty minutes later has resulted in me finishing a whopping eleven titles in three months.

Since January, I have completed:

  • His Majesty’s Dragon (Temeraire #1) – Naomi Novik ★★★
  • The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle #1) – Maggie Stiefvater ★★★★★
  • The Obelisk Gate (The Broken Earth #2) – N. K. Jemisin ★★★★★
  • The Dream Thieves (The Raven Cycle #2) – Maggie Stiefvater ★★★★★
  • Blue Lily, Lily Blue (The Raven Cycle #3) – Maggie Stiefvater ★★★★★
  • The Raven King (The Raven Cycle #4) – Maggie Stiefvater ★★★★★
  • Puppet Master Vol. 4 – Miyuki Miyabe ★★★
  • Opal (The Raven Cycle #4.5) – Maggie Stiefvater ★★★★★
  • A Gathering of Magic (Shades of Magic #2) – V.E Scwhab ★★★★★
  • Puppet Master Vol. 5 – Miyuki Miyabe ★★★
  • They Both Die at the End – Adam Silvera ★★★★

LOOK AT ALL THOSE STARS! Can you tell I love Maggie Stiefvater and the Raven Cycle? If not, it’s made pretty damn obvious in my gushing review of the series.

Seriously, it’s been really good reading in 2018. Currently, I’m cruising through Holly Black‘s The Coldest Girl in Coldtown; the last installment of N.K. Jemisin‘s Hugo Award-winning Broken Earth series, The Stone Sky; and indie debut Cloaked in Shadow by Ben Alderson.

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My motivation levels right now after such a long string of awesome reads. Source: http://cavereading.blogspot.com.au/2012/07/love-this-meme.html

What I Played

Yes, I game. I probably shouldn’t because it’s not constructive to my writing career, but hey, I’m a multi-passioned individual with interests outside of the written word. I’d probably be further through my writing projects if I wasn’t so preoccupied with other hobbies but that’s not going to change any time soon so I’m just going to roll with it.

While most of my game time has been devoted to Overwatch due to the vast number of friends who play it, I’ve also gotten back into the utter joy that is the Witcher 3: Wild Hunt. I dappled with Monster Hunter World because that seems to be everyone’s flavour of the moment, but the lack of actual storyline kind of killed my interest after twelve hours or so. To top things off, in what is going to be a horrible blow to my writing, I’m looking at getting back into Final Fantasy XIV after a two-year long hiatus.

RIP Ruptured Sky. It was nice knowing you.
What I Watched

Yes, I know one of my goals for 2018 was to read more and watch less but I actually like TV. Particularly trash TV. Gilmore Girls made it back on to my watch list as it seems to every year, and I also binged Netflix‘s new Queer Eye in one afternoon when I was home sick from work. I’m ashamed to say I lost a great deal of writing time to the horribly addictive trainwreck that was this year’s Married at First Sight. Thank God that is over so I can return to real life. However, coinciding with MAFS‘s completion, was the return of Shadowhunters Season 3 and I’m back to gleefully following Harry Shum Jr as Magnus Bane down the rabbit hole in to terrible scripting hell.

I did watch ONE quality piece of film in recent months and that was thanks to the release of Thor Ragnarok on DVD. I don’t get to the cinemas much (none in my location) and that’s really the only reason I haven’t seen Black Panther, or waited this long to catch up with my much-loved Thor franchise. And it was perfection.

And that pretty much sums things up for the opening quarter of twenty-eighteen. As always, I will endeavour to update this thing with more content for the readers out there. I do have two teaser stories for Gardens of War and Wasteland, which you will hopefully see over the coming weeks months. I am also looking at publishing a online novella, with regular chapters rolled out to subscribers of my mailing list (which will also be set up soon).

Things are happening. I promise.

j.a.m

PS:
I’m just going to leave this here…

(Courtesy of tumblr)

2 thoughts on “q-one in review”

    1. Thank you so much for your lovely support Aimee! It’s hard to focus on the small achievements when you get so wound up in the product. Just have to keep taking it one sentence at a time.

      xx
      j.a.m

      Like

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