Trying to Work

I have struggled to get edits done for Crop over the past week. I have goals, I have timelines, but I’ve been so stressed out by the day-job that I’ve managed absolutely nothing for two weeks.

And that sucks.

This morning I started editing Crop and even got through a couple chapters of removing ‘was’ (one of the many things I’m trying to do to strengthen my writing) then I finished my coffee and went out on an errand.

When I got back, I should have gotten back to work. Instead, I took a nap.

I did deserve a nap, but it’s also hours not being put into the work that I’m already behind on.

I miss the days when I’d stumble home from work (stumbling because I was tired) pour myself a glass of wine and spend the rest of my night editing as a way to unwind.

I’m working night shifts is why I can’t try to do that, I think. That and being constantly broke.

My school year is fast approaching and between it and work, I won’t be able to relax into much writing. Especially if the student loan doesn’t go through. Then I’ll need all the hours I can get to pay for the school but unlike a university degree, I can afford to pay for school with my current situation.

Come on, student loan.

The writing hasn’t really come back yet but my backlog for editing is pretty extensive and I wrote out all those plots weeks ago just in case this happened during the school year. It just so happens that my ability to write ended months earlier due to stress and anxiety.

Tonight, I’ll do more edits while watching tv shows. I’m also factory restoring my little tablet/netbook thing so I can start working while at work. They insist on working me full time hours (but since I need the hours, I’m not really complaining) on night shifts so I’m going to make it work one way or another.

As in, this works or I’ll be taking a baseball bat to it.

The writing I have been doing, for books of course, I’m trying to watch how I write and do it stronger to start with but words fail me. It’s an indicator or stress and overworking.

I’m going to be removing the games from my phone and avoiding certain sites like Reddit where I only read half the titles and have mucked up my attention span.

Going to have to read books again instead of skimming, oh noes!

Lethargy

My get up and go got up and shot itself in the face: is how I describe how I’m feeling right now. I think it’s been a couple of weeks since I did any real work. It’s not that I don’t want to, it’s just that all my motivation is gone. Not the external motivation, the internal fire that keeps me going and keeps me warm at night.

Not depressed… which is usually a cause of this behaviour. A little stressed but in the process of fixing that. A few life changes, what with school and driving courses and applying for a student loan.

Could be the student loan. Since I’m dragging my feet about applying.

I have this weird relationship with spending money I need to improve my situation but not wanting to because of how large the dollar amount is.

Or it could be because my birthday is coming up. Normally I get whiny and … well, wine-y.

So the “Alphas Book 1” hasn’t been written. I do have to start over and write from the beginning of the book but it’s a loss of a couple of pages and I like the new plot better.

Wherein there is no plot really. But it’s a nice show of how Alphas can and do act. So far I’ve just had them startled. Like a cat finding a cucumber laying behind it. And the Alphas shown have been bickering over land. Land, like that’s going to get them a gold star.

I mean, it could, there’s a new world order they’re working out. But typically owners of land rule for a decade or so then get eaten and forgotten about.

Actual Alphas, who are settled in stable land, don’t worry about the land or who owns it. Unless that person interferes with their studies or inventions, then the owner of the land dies horribly when the Alpha unleashes his companions on the Dom’s settlement and just sits back with a cold drink, watching the bloody chaos that follows.

I don’t know why I want to write about the companions going all stabby but it’s been a recurring fantasy of mine since I created the world and it hasn’t been linked to any real world problem. It’s probably a phenomenon in the world that I just want to explore, as I am a world builder.

Anyhow. Real alphas are a bit more like Blane when Alex was still alive. Alex (or a companion) would run their land, estate, raise the children right. The Alpha would take an active role but their mania would mean sometimes they are absentee fathers, which is where the companion comes in, stepping in to fill the role of father while the actual father is off and away.

So in Alphas Book 1 we come across Darien who is constantly checking his email. I really had to pry it out of him as to why it was important. He told me to take a flying leap, I threatened to have him broken for Rebecca’s (the only Mother so far) entertainment and that didn’t work. Then I threatened to sell his companions on the black market for dirty, unpleasant things and finally he relented.

He checks his email and phone throughout basically thinking things like, “nope, still a broke Alpha,” because he’s recently done a thing for his line of work, which I won’t spoil because it kind of ties in to the big ending. Darien isn’t necessarily young for an Alpha to break out into the world, twenty-seven or so. Which means he’s late to the party so to speak. He wasn’t in school all that time. He graduated at twenty with a doctorate (which is not unusual for an Alpha) and promptly and accidentally took on an underage companion.

With how Alphas break companions and create lifelong, unbreakable bonds with their new… ‘friends’ this is a very real problem in the world. Darien went to a party, Cody said he was of age and had a fake identification (obviously Darien couldn’t tell the difference) then found out the problem the next day.

Okay, so that’s a little world building for me because without that I might lose interest. Cody would be the first companion broken while underage who is acknowledged in the books but when you have jerks like Owen about, it’s likely happened in the past and I hope they were slaughtered slowly by their own companions.

Oh… that happened too. Wonder what the story was behind that.

Darien and the new kid Al are in talks with one another about how this will go. It seems they want a bunch of smut with the old companions in the first book, a bunch of smut with Al in the second book, and then maybe a third to wrap up the whole story with a bunch of smut all around and maybe with Blane.

Who probably walks in pissed off because this would be the sixth book, I think, that I have him called.

Why?

Oh, he knows why.

Which is also why he’s not protesting too loudly to me about it.

Of course, these would be novella lengths, not books. Or novellettes.

Obviously my words aren’t backed up, so I’m not burnt out. The ideas are still there and flowing like ever before.

No idea what’s wrong. But I have to head out for a course now, so I’ll have to try to solve this problem later.

Alphas

So… I now need to name the world that Daughters of the Alphas takes place in. I’ve had a short but heated debate with the Alpha from this morning and have agreed to do a companion series involving Alphas and their companions.

That’s right, I know there are some readers out there who have been waiting for this. I will be doing a m/m series in the same world.

The point that the Alpha argued was that this world started as m/m and has been f/m with a quasi m/m sub-theme because of the civil war. But before the war, Alphas recognized that some of them just weren’t interested in women except for breeding. As in, not attracted to them but they are friends with women or hire a surrogate.

In the new world order the place of the companion has changed yet not. Even though Alphas and companions go together like cats and catnip, they haven’t been covered in Daughters of the Alphas. Even the planned books, the Alphas are mainly heterosexually inclined.

The terms that have so far been agreed to:

-Aiming for novella lengths. Short reads basically.

-Both new and settled companions

-Possibly tales of Alphas from the past. So historically relevant to the world.

As it’s going to be novella length in nature, I’m not certain when they will get done. The last novella was Contract Gifted which was written across three or so months as I had the time. This was among other projects as well.

So, names for the world and ideas on how to get this moving.

Updates

The site has a new look, at least for the moment. Well, it might be given yet another new look in a few days but I’m not minding this one. I’ve adjusted the menus up top and two new pages for sub-series. The only trouble I’m having is that the older cover images added for Contracted and Wraith’s Rebellion have a weird white border around them. I’ll re-add them later and see if that solves the issue.

I already want to go back to writing Coffee and Blood. I’m kind of thinking about writing Gaia next. We’ve kind of beat out the details, so that’s good. Ish.

I have not done up the timeline yet because I’m trying to figure out how to fit forty-thousand years of human innovation and exploration into forty-two inches of paper. Recall, the closer to modern times you come, the more events and inventions there are. I think in the first twenty-thousand years of Hera’s life the most significant human discovery/change was the domestication of dogs.

Of course, I’m generalizing the timeline. There were lots of stuff happening in there like the recent-ish discovery of stone jewelry, and I’ve read articles about them discovering agriculture as far back as forty thousand years.

I like history and I like myth. My retention of that information is spotty at best but I do love reading and re-reading it.

The past three days or so I’ve been consumed by anxiety. Sitting in my basement room, playing Sims, and basically pouting.

Because I knew I was anxious and that it was holding me back but I couldn’t drag myself out of it. You know, that ‘upset that you’re upset’ feeling.

I updated The Others yesterday and wrote part of a second post for that. At least I got something done. I had trouble sleeping which isn’t necessarily a problem, but as the anxiety has abated some but not entirely, it wore on my for three days, and I didn’t really sleep last night means that this morning I’m mentally exhausted.

It took an hour and a half to put a chapter of At Death’s Door through an edit. But, I did it. I’m going to try to do another when I get home. Then I’m going to make a cover, maybe two. My thought on Wraith’s Rebellion has changed slightly so I have to go looking again. I also need a colour that would go well with the books. I used a red-orange for The Reaping so that’s not an option. I could use the brown that is in the original covers because I had thought of using the original texture too but brown on a cover that’s not completely consumed by an image?

Might look funny.

Barring that, I can start an edit of Crop.

My only trouble at this point is that I want to play Sims but also work. I’ve done that before. It’s very possible. I just need the computer for At Death’s Door because nothing else I have is capable of running my editing programs. Which means I have to be done the edit and covers before I can move on to playing Sims and editing at the same time because only the computer can use the photo editing software.

The more I think about all this, the less I want to do the edits and cover design. Likely, I’m feeling burned out and I haven’t had a new book out in several months and yet have been reading and hearing too much about how you’ll never succeed if you aren’t pumping out books every couple of weeks.

I can keep that pace, if I don’t do editing and covers. At the same time, I’m not a big believer of rushing things to publication before I’m happy with them.

And you can succeed if you don’t publish constantly. And by constantly I mean once every three weeks.

But at the moment I’m in a slump and I’m feeling rather like the world is telling me I’m going to fail. That’s likely linked to the anxiety I’ve been having, as I know I get like this sometimes.

Then one day I wake up and decide the whole world can burn, I roll up my sleeves and get back to work.

I guess this is still linked to the ‘upset you’re upset’ that I’ve been feeling.

I still haven’t gotten around to making covers for sale. It seems the price of them has gone up meaning not only can I not afford them ‘even more’ but also if I was making them, I might be able to afford an editor/cover designer for my books rather than struggling through them finding what’s right for the book I just wrote.

Suppose this ended up half-rant, half-update.

Back to work after the day-job and until school starts. Then writing has to go on the back burner because working and full-time school and the boyfriend.

I don’t have time or money to do all that I want.

And my luck is poop so I can’t even joke about winning the lottery because I’d never win it.

Hera

Last week my hypergraphia flared up.

As I’ve stated before, I have hypergraphia. This means that every once in a while I have these episodes where I have to write. It’s linked to obsessive compulsive disorder and let me tell you.

There is no option.

When these moods hit me, I often start projects but then as the mania passes the project tapers off and never gets finished.

So last week when I started writing Hera I didn’t tell anyone except those in my immediate life.

Over the course of eight days I wrote about 97k words. Just a couple of hours ago, I finished the first draft.

Because of the mania which fueled this story, I have no idea if it’s any good. I know (from reading articles and the like) that the stories written during the mania of hypergraphia can seem like the best idea during but then once the mood has passed it makes no sense.

I quite hope it is good, and barring that, salvageable.

The first Elders book is written. I think my mania has passed and now I can get back to other work.