Monday, January 13, 2014

Writing Update

On my last writing update I prefaced the post with an apology for my absence and here must do so again. I’ve got some horrible stuff going on in my life at the moment that’s put me severely out of kilter, and I can’t say much more about it than that. These particularly shitty events are also why you won’t be seeing a video clip from me answering your questions for … well, until I’m ready.

So back to the writing. The above has slowed me down quite a bit but I have now managed to work my way backward through all the Penny Royal books. To re-iterate: I read a book backwards a paragraph at a time (not a word at a time!) so I don’t get involved in the story and am more likely to pick up errors (and it’s incredibly boring). While doing this I also made 26 notes on stuff I needed to go back to. I’m now working my way through those.

And now, as in that other ‘writing update’ I’m going to insert picture that has nothing to do with the subject of the post. Here is an image from the new Jon Sullivan cover for The Engineer ReConditioned. A cover so good, incidentally, that the publisher Jon Betancourt of Wildside Press, might be issuing a special trade paperback to celebrate it.


Each note on the Penny Royal books has required me following plot threads that have sometimes extended across all three books, or sometimes across the three books just focusing on one item. Take for example note 2: Consistency in the kind of space suits they are wearing. I’ve had to make sure my characters are wearing the right suits, whether they are ones with collapsible helmets or ones that can be removed, visors that slide into the helmets or down into the neck rings, shimmershield visors, suits that are motorised or not etc. Other notes have required me writing additional sections. The note I’ve been working on today has required me writing one additional section concerning the theft of three runcibles, extending a couple of other sections, and now going through the rest of the books to make things match up with what has happened in the new stuff.   

Once I’ve got all these notes sorted out I then have to get onto the editorial notes that Bella Pagan has given me for the first book. I’ve no doubt that when I get into that it will create further work in the ensuing books! It’s been an interesting experience writing the books as a bloc like this and it makes me wonder how the hell the Cormac series managed to mesh together so well.

Now onto the names of things: I think we have now settled on the series being called Transformations I, II & III. The first book will (don’t hold me to this) be called Dark Intelligence … beyond that things are still a little up in the air. Plenty of time to get that sorted out.

6 comments:

osh said...

Hi neal,

Really hope that things get better for you / family.

I'm sure all your fans thoughts are with you.

Mike Fisher said...

What OSH said..

Many times over.

Hang in there, Neal...

Bob Lock said...

Yep, I'd like to add my and Anna's best wishes to you and your family, Neal. Hope things improve for you all in 2014
Best
Bob

Richie Jarvis said...

Hi Neal,

What the others said - we don't need to know - just know you have everyones support.

Looking forward to release date of the Penny Royal series though :D Cover looks awesome! Might even buy a paper copy with a cover that good!!

Cheers,

Richie

Miles Campbell said...

Hi Neal,

Sorry you are having such a rough time and a big thanks for taking the time to give us fans an update.

Best wishes to you and yours,

Miles

daniel ware said...

Hope things pick up for you personally soon, I also admire your dedication to consistency!