ROW80, WIPpet Wednesday, and a Kick in My Frozen Arse

Monday kicked my ass. Tuesday…well…as I write this, that remains to be seen. I had a post planned for Monday. Another glorious WIPterview , as well as the official kick-off of ROW80. Let’s glance back to Monday on this Blog, shall we?

*sound of crickets chirping*  *sound of trees creaking in the bitterly cold, sub-zero temps*

What? There was no post Monday? Oh, yeah. Whatever.

“Hey, Schwengel?”

*looks around*

“Knock off the whining, sarcastic crap and get on with it.”

Um…yeah…sure. *peers under desk and in closet* Ahhhh…who are you?

“Just another one of the voices in your brain pan. Move along before I enlist the aid of the monkeys to kick you one in the backside.”

*clears throat* Of course. Moving on. Hey, it’s Wednesday and that means World Wide WIPpets and ROW80 updates. Or, in this case, ROW80 goals. For those who don’t know, ROW80 is “The Writing Challenge that Knows You Have A Life”. So, here are my ROW80 goals:

  1. Finish cover, final edits, formatting, etc. to release Emergence by some time in February. Anyone who would like an ARC and will take the time to review, please let me know. You should have read First of Her Kind or you may be a bit lost.
  2. Hammer out some semblance of a cohesive plot for CBC. Yes, I’m a panster, but I do make myself notes…guidelines, really…of where I want a story to go. Since several unruly characters have seen fit to derail me once already, I’m not taking any more chances.
  3. Finish the first draft of CBC.
  4. Spend some more time with Medieval Swordsmanship: Illustrated Methods & Techniques since the nearest class is a 45 minute drive on a weeknight and with my schedule, not doable. Yes, learning the longsword could be considered as something on my Bucket List, if I were the type to have such a list.
  5. Get back into my healthy eating, exercising routine that went the way of the eggnog cheesecake sometime back before Thanksgiving.

I think that will be good for now. Don’t want to overdo it.

And now, the moment you’ve all been waiting for…WIPpet time! I’m giving you a short one today. I go to page 8 and give you the 1st full paragraph. This takes place before last week’s, but not by much.

I crept through the shadows along the edge of the gallows yard. Come hanging day it would be packed with every citizen of Runoff, and those nosy lower Cooper’s Hill types, all shouldering one another for prime viewing spots. A lot of coin would be made by the purveyors of food and libations. A lot of coin and other valuables would be lost to the dippers, drawers, and cut-purses, and enough of them would be caught to insure another day or two of morbid entertainment.

Speaking of entertainment…a little WHIPping Post by the Allman Brothers.


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  1. The Medieval Swordsmanship book sounds like an answer to my problems. Let me know how it is and if it’s worth getting!!

    As for t’other — I’m interested in the ARC! Would love to read & support you. Such a great project.

    Fantastic WIP. Lots of bitterness and description in those few words 🙂

    • Well, whether or not the Swordsmanship book is the answer to your problems depends on what those problems are! LOL It goes into the individual moves of swordplay, not fencing, mind. I think it is aligned with the Western Martial Arts style.

      An ARC will come your way as soon as I’m finished fiddling with it. Um…I mean…formatting. I’m not fiddling. 😉 Thanks so much!

  2. There’s so much packed into that one paragraph and there’s a real sense of the dark festivities that are about to happen.

    Good luck achieving all your goals for ROW80.

  3. I’m so behind due to holiday travel and trying to get back into the swing of things. Also, we’re in the deep freeze here in the Midwest. I’m usually under a blanket.
    Did you ever submit Driev’s story to Angry Robot?
    Man, I wish I had a book on medieval swordsmanship!!!

    • Hey, we’re up to 7 degrees here today! Break out the swimsuits and flip-flops! 🙂

      No, Driev’s story got sabotaged by an unruly character, the plot doing a complete derailment. So, no Angry Robots for Driev.

  4. I really hate the thought of watching someone being executed. They did it all the time in British history but it really makes me shudder. Great excerpt though, you really set the scene well. It’s very atmospheric. 🙂

    • I can’t say that I would ever want to see a public execution, but there is a large faction of the human race who take some kind of perverse…enjoyment? pleasure? in it.

  5. Preparations for a mob frenzy… umm, delightful?

    I love the simplistic excessiveness of your ROW80 goals too, Kathi. (as in how easy it is to pack WAY too much stuff into a little goal like “create a real first draft”?) Don’t worry, we’ll be cheering you on all the way.

    • “Simplistic excessiveness” I love the ring to that. Complete a first draft really isn’t that far out there since I have a good chunk done already. *she says, smiling optimistically* *thinks smile might be more like a terrified grimace*

      • I think it depends on the kind of draft one does. My first drafts are these rambling things that include about three or four (big Toliken-esque) books inside them with so many subplots I tend to lose track of what my original premise was. *considers dying hair blonde but realizes most blondes she knows are really smart cookies and gives up*

        • Very true. I do tend to have lots of sub-plots until I start realizing that, as fun as they were to write, they really didn’t need to be in the story. You know how some movies show the outtakes and deleted scenes? Maybe authors should start adding those to the back of their books! LOL A whole section of deleted scenes and mess-ups.

          • A lot of subplots are in novels but not added to the movies they are based on (eg. the whole Tom Bombadil section of LotR). It still added a ton of texture to the novel itself.

            As for adding more stuff…. That’s what websites are for, right? (or those big compendium books published later….)

  6. You are such an overachiever – the mere existence of your list proves it. My goals are much more simple. (Write everyday. Look forward to glorious day when finish something…). Love the WIPpet of course, sets a great tone. Funny though it reminds me of Elaine’s approaching school reunion…

  7. Too bad that class is so far away. Have you looked on cragislist for more local private teachers? I’m sure you could find some Ren. Fairre enthusiast with a collection of swords in just about any part of the country. 🙂

    Ah, the hangings. Is the executioner the type to tie a proper knot that breaks the neck for a merciful death? Or is he the kind of twisted sadist who likes to put on a show? Dancing feet, purple faces, and all that?

    • Good idea, ReGi. I will admit to being somewhat of a snob where this is concerned, though. I want to learn properly, from someone who has trained in a certain school’s manner…

      Unfortunately, the executioner puts on a good show. Have to keep the people entertained, you know. Fortunately, readers won’t see it. I don’t think.

      • *shakes head disapprovingly* Tsk, tsk. Doesn’t he know he’ll just encourage more crime that way? I mean, it just leads to the idea that there’s a possibility one might be cut down at the last second, daringly rescued by one’s honorable band of thieves. *irritated sigh* Executioners these days…

  8. Man, I love your descriptions, Kathi! You have a great hand for setting a scene.

    I do not envy you guys in that cold front area in NA. BRRR! I hate cold. I think when I retire I have to move to the canary islands …

    Sound like some great goals. Good luck with them!

    • Aww, thanks, Ruth. 😀 I admit that I like winter. And, I won’t whine if we have a day or two where temps dip in the sub-zero range. But this morning on my way into work it was -20. Theoretically, it’s supposed to get to +20 today. Hmm…someone better turn the heat on then. Honestly, though, I do better in this than 80 and humid. I wilt.

  9. Glad to hear that I’m not the only one whose characters frequently see fit to derail whatever semblance of plan I’ve created. Good luck meeting your goals!

    • Thanks, Denise. I have a feeling there’s this big lounge type room in the world where characters dwell, they all get together there and share stories about how they’ve mucked up their author’s world. Bet they get a big laugh from it. 😉

  10. Vivid snippet! It really sets the mood perfectly.

    I hear you about jumping back on that healthy eating/exercising bandwagon. Sigh. It’s not easy …

  11. It’s very interesting to read this paragraph out of context. It brings up probably a whole different world than you intended it to, which is interesting. All the emotions associated with that world are being brought up to. And who knows–maybe you did intend it. =P

  12. Liked the WIPet – and if there’s to be an execution, of course he must make it a spectacular one – musn’t short change the audience 🙂 full list of goals all the best:)def. think there a place for characters to hang out and chortle at us authors and our attempts to rein them in.

    • Angry audiences tend to turn into unruly mobs and then all sorts of mayhem ensues. Can’t have mayhem breaking out…or can we? 😉

  13. This winter has knocked out a lot of people, hasn’t it? Best of wishes for reaching the writing goals this year!

    • I normally don’t whine too much about winter. I much prefer it over heat and humidity. But this last stretch…it messed with my truck. No one messes with Skronk and gets away with it. 😉

  14. About your ROW80 goal #5… ME TOO! Best of luck getting healthier.

    I loved the WIPpet. I love how it is a cycle that seems to feed on itself and a dark one at that.

  15. It’s sad that someone loosing their life would be a reason for others to get together and hang out – but it was such a popular thing to do back in the day. People are weird. Great snippet though, I really enjoy the vivid atmosphere it describes.

    • Well, in a time when there was limited entertainment, I guess the masses had to take what they could get. Humans have a morbid attraction to death at times.

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