I’ll update this page periodically so you’ll know where I am on current projects.
December 7th, 2023
I recently attended a Renaissance Festival with my family, and we had a blast. One highlight was the “Tournament of Arms” where men and women fought each other in full armor.
To say I watched with great interest is an understatement. While my novel series, Path of Relics, is set in a game world, that world is a “realistic” medieval / fantasy setting. I learned a few things from these modern reenactments of ye old fighting styles.
Obviously, some of that fighting reality will make its way into my revision of PoR: Dark Throne. But some absolutely won’t. Because part of fiction is the fun of escapism. The rule of cool.
If you’re interested, I wrote more about my ren fest experience and the lessons I learned (and how they might influence my writing) in this post – Tis The Season for Escape.
November 4th, 2023
Revisions continue on Path of Relics: Dark Throne. It’s strange the ups and downs of writing…
I’ve been frustrated, struggling to rework a chapter the last couple of days. I mean, I was really hating this chapter, to the point of questioning major points about the story.
Part of the issue was I needed to work through some world building that could no longer be put off. But after taking the time for that and pushing through, this chapter turned out to be the most thrilling so far! Both in terms of how it developed as I revised, and the action that occurs in the scene.
Goes to show how some of the best rewards are so unexpected.
Touche, Path of Relics. Touche.
October 14th, 2023
Time for an update on Path of Relics 2 (and a title reveal).
I’ll keep things brief here since I wrote a blog post going into more details. But the release date of the sequel is now March 2024. I apologize for the delay, but overall, this will be best for the novel and for my writing process going forward.
And no longer shall I call the sequel Path of Relics “2.”
The full title of the sequel novel is… Path of Relics: Dark Throne
August 25, 2023
Today, I finished my short anthology of short stories, Flash Horizons. It’s 11 bite-sized escapes into science fiction wonder. Perfect for a quick getaway from the mundane. You can get your free copy by going to the link below…
Other than that, the revision for Path of Relics 2 continues. Cover art for the new novel is with the designer, and I’ve already gotten a sketch version for review.
Exciting stuff! Feels like progress today.
July 29, 2023
Been a while since I posted, but the revision of Path of Relics 2 continues!
Life has been hectic lately, so my progress has slowed more than I’d like. But I’m still aiming for an end of 2023 release for Path of Relics 2.
This sequel is only my second novel, so a lot of firsts in my writing career I’ve needed to learn how to do. Like, for example, how to do a sequel. We’ve all experienced those sequels that bite, and I’m doing my best to avoid that.
And there’s also how to do romance (I won’t say between who 😉 ) but in a fun way that still fits into an action-adventure story. It’s had its ups and downs and been frustrating a lot lately, but really starting to get into the fun bit.
What’s interesting is I’m seeing ways to speed my process for future novels. My goal is to eventually publish two books a year. But we’ll see…
I’ll of course keep you updated!
May 24, 2023
Still working through the revision of Path of Relics 2. Making progress, but other items are vying for my time as well.
One of those is an ebook of flash fiction short stories which will be free for all members of my newsletter. It’ll be about ten stories, each 1000 words or less. I’m thinking of each story as a “bite-sized” sci fi / fantasy escape for our busy world.
So if you’re already on my newsletter, look out for that in the coming weeks. If not, sign up now on my homepage or in the sidebar to the right, and you’ll receive the free ebook as soon as it’s finished.
Besides that, I’m heading out for vacation next week. But worry not! When I get back, the revision of Path of Relics 2 continues.
April 23, 2023
I’m well into reading through the first draft of Path of Relics 2, making revision notes as I go.
This method worked well for me last time (when revising the first novel). I’ll finish this read-through next week, then collect my notes and thoughts into a Revision Guide to actually start the changes and re-writing.
The prose and direction isn’t as bad as I feared it would be, so that’s a relief. In fact, parts of it are already a delight to read. I glanced back at the first draft of the first novel, and the revision notes I’d made for it, and it was in a similar state of disarray.
If anything, my first draft of this sequel is in much better shape. I suppose I’ve become a better writer from my work on PoR 1, and the several short stories I’ve completed since. I’ll post another update in another two weeks or so.
April 2, 2023
Draft one of Path of Relics 2 is finished! Actually, it was finished as of March 13th; I’ve just been catching up on other projects since then.
Now that I’ve given the manuscript a few weeks to rest, I’ll jump into planning the second draft and executing on that next week. That’s a daunting feeling, but I’ve gone through the process once with the first novel and also many times with short stories.
I know I’ll get there, it’s just looking up that hill and mentally preparing myself. No time frame for revision 2, but I still aim to publish by end of 2023. You’ll get all the updates in my newsletter, so if you haven’t already signed up, you can do that up top.
Feb 21, 2023
Draft one continues! The sequel to Path of Relics is well on its way. I’m currently about 60 percent of the way through draft one. Had some bumps along the way that slowed me down last week, but I’m back on track.
First drafts are always tough for me. It’s a constant battle against the little voice inside saying everything I’m typing is total crap. And for the first draft, that voice isn’t totally off base. First drafts do tend to suck, as a general rule. But, y’know, you gotta get through them.
I enjoy revision much more. Having something already on the page to think about and consider how I might improve it, that’s where I shine. And that’s my mantra as I’m slogging through this first pass. “Get to revision!”
I’ll be sure to keep you updated!
Jan 5, 2023
Happy new year! I hope the excitement of 2023 is treating you well so far. This year brings big plans for me. A sequel, some short stories, and more.,.
I begin the first draft of Path of Relics Book 2 (full title to be released at a later time 😉 on Monday, 1/9/23. My deadline for finishing the first draft is 3/17/23. So hold me to that, haha. Feel free to write in and see how things are going. In fact, next week, I’ll send out another email with a special offer for you.
My plans to publish a work of flash fiction last year didn’t pan out. Notably because the online magazine I had in mind isn’t accepting submissions at the moment. So I’ll have to zig on that one and find another publication. But that’s also in the works.
Still learning the ropes of self-publishing, and I plan on improving my promotion game this year. I have some ideas of what that’ll look like (influencers, I’m looking at you), but more research is needed. I’ll be sure to keep you updated. Cheers!
Oct 24, 2022
Currently in the brainstorming phase of Path of Relics 2. Working through world building as well as plot, character arcs, motivations, etc. All heading toward an outline that will help me sketch in what happens chapter to chapter.
That’s a bit simplified, but once that process is done, I can move on to the rough draft. This will be weeks of furious writing so I can get to the end of draft 1.
That’s when I get to my favorite part, revision. It’s usually easier for me to work through something that’s already in front of me but flawed, rather than creating from scratch. Both are necessary, but I feel less resistance to revision.
I also aim to publish a short story or two before the end of the year. I’ll let you know the results.
Sept 1, 2022
Today is Launch Day for Path of Relics! You can order it now, on Amazon, by going here – https://amzn.to/3pNlbaM
I’m obviously working through the launch and promotion process for the next week, and long after. But coming soon, I have the prequel, Path of Relics: Beta, to revise and publish to Royal Road (more on that when it’s getting close) and the sequel. The sequel in currently in the outlining stages, but I’m very excited about where it’s heading.
As I’ve mentioned before, my first novel took some time since I didn’t know what the heck I was doing. Now that I’ve been through the process, however, I’m more efficient. Can’t wait to get more stories out to you!
Aug 29, 2022
It’s Launch Week! My first novel, Path of Relics: Aether Shard, releases this Thursday, Sept 1st on Amazon. It’ll be available in ebook and paperback versions.
Such a long journey to get here, and such a long way to go. I’ll have a busy week ahead guiding my launch team and putting out promotions, but it feels great to have come so far. If you’ve been following along, thank you for your interest and support.
I’ll post again on launch day, so look for more info then. For now, time to prepare for the week ahead and then enjoy a celebratory weekend I’ve been looking forward to for a LONG time. Cheers!
July 27, 2022
Path of Relics: Aether Shard launches first week in September! In fact, here’s the cover reveal.
I’ve been busy the last couple of months trying to figure out this launch thing. Also, I created a second epilogue for the novel, which those who purchase the book and join my newsletter will have access to.
Still writing short stories in my writing group. I plan to revise these based on feedback and try publishing them. You’ll certainly get to read them at some point!
Keep an eye out for more details about Path of Relics. And if you haven’t already, sign up to my newsletter so you don’t miss any updates. Just look for the “Get Updates” section on this page.
May 31, 2022
So the release date of Path of Relics: Aether Shard is August, 2022! Putting that out there now for some accountability and to get things in motion. More info to come, but still lots to do to prepare.
In other news, I ordered a proof copy of my paperback from Amazon. This is to check that everything looks correct. It’s supposed to come in tomorrow, so that’ll be exciting.
Other than that, in my writing group, I’ve written one flash fiction short story a week for the past four weeks straight. It’s been fun and rewarding. In each story, I try to focus on a different aspect of storytelling to practice. Happy Summer!
March 31, 2022
The final stretch has begun. I’ve finished all of my revisions on Path of Relics: Aethershard and now it’s on to the launch process. But the “todo” list to get there still looks daunting.
Here’s a taste: write Amazon description, format manuscript for ebook and print versions, write second epilogue as a newsletter promotion, finalize map to include in book, finish planning launch tasks… sigh
I also have a prequel novel rough draft “in the can.” I’d planned to revise it and upload chapter by chapter to Royal Road to serve as promotion for the novel 1 launch, but given the other tasks left to do, I may wait to launch this prequel novel later. It’ll still generate interest (I hope) no matter when I release it.
February 17, 2022
Today, I finished the first draft of my new novella. It’s titled Path of Relics: Beta. It serves as the prequel story of my first novel, Path of Relics: Aether Shard. I plan to offer this novel for free in certain places as a promotional strategy.
Because as of now, I don’t have a readership. So I’m hoping this prequel will garner some interest and momentum, which I can then direct toward the launch of novel 1. I intended the prequel to be in the 20,000 word range, but as of now, the manuscript sits at 40,229 words. So I guess I don’t feel so bad that it took me over twice as long to finish the first draft as I had planned.
Now it’s time to celebrate (just a bit). Then I finish my tweaks of Novel 1 based on the feedback I received from the developmental edit. Probably a round of proofreading after that. Then it’s on to launch!
The great news is, my writing process is already faster than it used to be. Hopefully, that will continue to improve. I’ve grown more accepting of the time this is taking, however. Mostly because I’ve realized I’m not just trying to release a novel; I’m trying to launch a career.
December 30, 2021
Happy ‘Almost New Year’ to you! It’s been a productive year for me, but strange, it doesn’t feel that way. I figured this would be a good time to look back on 2021 and what I’ve accomplished writing-wise. Because it’s better to think in terms of how far you’ve come than how far you have to go, right?
So the biggest first… I completed revisions 2 and 3 of my first novel, Path of Relics: AetherShard. I also sent it to a few beta readers who really seemed to enjoy it. The manuscript has also gone through a professional developmental edit. And my cover art is in the final stages of completion; now it’s moving to the typography stage.
Besides all this, I have written eight flash fiction stories. Only my writing group has seen these stories for the time being. But next year, I plan to write more short stories and revise them, with the goal of publishing them in online (paying) journals. The money likely won’t be A LOT, but to think I could soon be a paid fiction author is an amazing feeling.
In the next few weeks, I’ll write the rough draft of my prequel novel, Path of Relics: Beta. And afterwards, I’ll complete the suggestions from my dev editor for Novel 1. After that, it’s starting up the launch process.
So what have I learned with all this? Well, a lot, especially about writing itself, but more so, I’ve learned how long this process can take. For future novels, I’ll have a better idea of what I can skip and what I need to get rolling sooner. I’ll be sure to keep you updated! Here’s to a great 2022 for all of us. Happy New Year!
November 8, 2021
Things are moving along! I received feedback from my developmental editor. A few minor to medium tweaks, but nothing too time-consuming. The color sketch of my cover art also came in and it’s looking great. Can’t wait to share that with you.
In the meantime, I’ve been working on the outline of my prequel novella. This will be a free story available to people who sign up for my newsletter. It follows a character named Blair and her exploits with Path of Relics that lead directly into the main story of novel 1.
I’ve also been writing flash fiction stories every two weeks. I’ll probably polish some of these and submit them for publication. And then who knows, an anthology at some point?
As for publication of Path of Relics: Aether Shard (novel 1)… Still looking like first quarter of 2022.
September 9, 2021
I feel that’s where I’m at right now with my novel process. But it’s not a bad thing, actually.
My manuscript is with a developmental editor right now. She’s reading through it and will make suggestions to tighten the story, make it more impactful, improve the themes and characters and everything, really.
That process should be done at the end of October, then it’s back to some more revisions on my part. Then I begin the launch process.
In the meantime, I still have plenty to do. I have to learn how to do a launch and start preparing all of that. I’d also like to write a second epilogue for my novel and a short prequel which will both serve as downloads to anyone who signs up to my newsletter.
Have I mentioned before this is all taking way longer than I originally thought it would? Oh well, I’ll be more efficient next time. Onward.
June 23, 2021
Been a while since my last update. I’ve been steadily working through my 3rd revision of “Relic Hunter: Aether Shard.” That title will change, since I’ve found there’s already a Relic Hunter prominent on Amazon (starring Tia Carrere!) I have some ideas, but it’ll be a pain, since the term Relic Hunter is in almost every chapter of the book.
Only four chapters left to this edit. Then it’s on to finding a professional editor, and handing off to beta readers. Although I’m not sure if I should give it to Betas until after a developmental edit. Oh, the steep learning curve of your first novel…
This edit has been easier that revision 2, but much is still changing. I’ve found this edit has added clarity to some of my themes and plot pieces. As well as fleshing out the character’s and their motivations. It has truly been a fun edit. But I can still see lots of room for improvement.
March 20, 2021
I started revision 3 of my novel this week. And I decided on a new title, Relic Hunter: Aether Shard. Each novel in the series will now be titled Relic Hunter, with the appropriate subtitle on each.
I’ve also revised my time estimates for the series. Unsurprisingly, my expectations were set far too high, thinking I could complete 3 novels by the end of 2021. But the first novel I can certainly publish this year. My hope is the next novels will be easier and faster, now that I’ve gone through the process once.
Once I’m through this revision, I’ll send the manuscript to a professional developmental editor. More revisions, then beta readers! Can’t wait for that phase of things. It’s when I’ll see how actual readers of my chosen genre react to the story.
February 3, 2021
Continuing with my read through of the second draft of Aethershard. As I go, I’m making notes at the chapter level and general notes I’ll need to change for the story at large.
It’s a humbling experience. I’m currently reading Patrick Rothfuss’ Name of the Wind. I don’t know if I can recommend reading the work of a professional veteran author as you revise your own story. It certainly inspires, and I know it will help my writing overall. But seeing how inferior my writing is in comparison is disheartening.
But my revision continues, and I know I’ll only improve my story as I go. The best I can hope for is to put out the best novel I can at my current level of experience. And know that my writing and novels will only get better as I continue in this career.
I’ve also begun posting regular articles here on the site in 2021. I consume science and geek news daily, so I’ll post my takes on some of these news articles.
December 31, 2020
I’m finished with the second revision of my first novel, Aether shard! It’s been a long journey writing this novel. All of 2020, I’ve worked on it in one form or another.
But, I’ve learned a lot. And hopefully my future novels won’t take as long.
For example, I learned a lot about managing my time for a deadline. At the end, I spent about 4 days straight revising and writing new scenes to meet my goals. Probably close to 10 hours a day on average. It was brutal. But also fun and exciting. Still, I’d have preferred to have done that work in smaller chunks beforehand. Oh well, lesson learned.
So, next steps… I will take the feedback I received from this revision and work those changes into the novel. After that, it’s time for a developmental editor. Not quite sure how I’m going to pay for that yet. And while that’s happening, I’ll begin plotting out my second novel in the series. I’ll likely start on the first draft of that sometime in the first quarter of 2021.
That’s it for the update. Hope you had a happy holidays. Happy New Year and to everyone an incredible 2021!
October 11, 2020
Been a while since my last update. Working through the first revision of my GameLit / LitRPG Lite novel, and I have a working title now:
So far, revision has been a tough but rewarding process. I’m averaging about 2 chapters per week. The issue is, I’m basically re-writing the chapters as I go. The general ideas of the story are there from the first draft. But in this revision, I’m focusing on including the character beats, filling in plot holes, making it all fit together better, etc.
I would love to be one of those authors who self-publishes 3 to 4 novels a year. Right now, that feels a long way off. My hope is I’ll eventually get faster at all this. For now, I’ll just keep pushing through.
See you next update!
August 11, 2020
I’ve finished reading back through the first draft of my Gamelit novel. Along the way, I took notes of what to change, improve, etc. It’s rather daunting—my revision notes document is over 20,000 words long.
Spent the morning today going back through it and organizing. Now, on to the hard part. I need to decide on major structural changes, plot holes, character arcs, etc.
This is my first time writing a novel, so I HOPE this will be the most unorganized rough draft I ever write. The lessons learned here will hopefully transfer to novel 2 and beyond.
In other news, The Write Practice asked me to contribute an article on my experience winning the Summer 2020 short story writing contest. It was fun to write an article again. I haven’t done that in a while. If you’re interested, you can read it here – 5 Writing Contest Strategies To Improve Your Winning Chances.
July 3, 2020
In the revision process of the first novel in my Gamelit series. Currently, I’m halfway through reading the story after letting it sit for a while. I’m not editing yet. Just making notes.
When I’m done, I’ll make a revision plan and outline. Then I’ll edit from that.
I also have two short stories in mind to offer to my newsletter subscribers. This next week will be vacation for me and family, but I plan to complete a rough draft of one of these stories.
June 8, 2020
Finished the rough draft of the first novel in my GameLit Series. Untitled for now, but the subtitle might be something like: The Lore Hunter Series.
I’ll be planning out my revision process this week. And will likely start re-reading the rough draft as well.
On a separate note, I set up this website this week. It’s been exciting, finally seeing progress on this lifelong dream. I’d like to thank J.F. Penn for the inspiration to do this “writing journal” page to keep track of my progress. It’s a great way for readers to quickly see what I’m working on, as well as an archive for future reference.