First novels are a lot like new puppies. You can know all the right things to do, and you can invest heavily in feeding and nourishing it to make sure that it has all the right advantages, but that b--ch is going to do whatever she's going to do, and all you can really hope for is that she will be nice to you once she stops growing and settles into her real personality.
But back to the novel I've been working on. I managed to choke a good 35,000 words out of my outline last fall, and then I realized that I'd only written the first four chapters of my 13 chapter outline. Damn.
Back to the drawing board.
I did get one solid short story out of it, though. I'm currently shopping it around to a few places where I have friends, but I'm an internet person, so if they don't want it, I will release it directly to you before I bother blind submitting it to a bunch of literary journals I don't even read.
The good news is that while I was getting frustrated and punishing myself for being too stupid to follow my own outline, I did write some other stuff that I really liked.
For those of you who've been following my short stories on the Kindle platform, you should be happy about this. I'm compiling the 4 stories I released last year together with 3 new ones that are in the revision stage in order to create one solid novella, and that will be done relatively shortly (1-2 months).
For those of you who have not read my work, I've uploaded 2 of the stories to the "Short Stories and Sample Chapters" page in the menu bar above.
By now, you should have also noticed that we're no longer on Perception Filter. That site was really, really lame and restricted, mostly due to Webs.com severely limiting the flexibility and design options of their free pages. I spent a lot of the last 2 months weighing the pros and cons of putting together a self-hosted Wordpress and/or just designing a new site from the ground up, but to be honest, I have enough stories I want to write that I just don't want to take the time right now.
So, here I am. On Blogger. I like the ease of use of the gadgets, both for the existing ones and for how easy Google makes it to add custom code to the page. I like that even though it's free, I'm allowed to sell my own ad space, use Adsense, or sign up for other programs (such as donation buttons). I'm using Adsense right now, just to feel out the system and to see if I want to keep it, and I'm not sure if I'll use other options, even if I wind up hating Adsense.
I'm also re-dedicating myself to this blog. Perception Filter was the first blog I've managed to get semi-disciplined about and to update on a fairly frequent basis, but as I bring my first book into the marketplace, I'm thinking that I'll want to discuss my progress, my goals, and my achievements a little more. That's not to say I'm done using my blog as a platform for longer essays.
You'll find that I have brought all of my longer essays from the last seven or eight months with me to this blog. I plan on writing more, too. Essay writing is in my blood. I just also want to write more of these reflective journal posts.
I hope that you like the new layout, and I hope that it doesn't turn off my old readers to see me writing more about my entrepreneurial efforts. I still do intend to write and talk a lot about autism and other issues that are dear to my heart.
Hell, I couldn't stop myself if I wanted to. After all, veterans tend to write about the military, engineers tend to write sci-fi, and lawyers tend to write legal thrillers. I can't not write about autism. Every main character I ever write will probably be autistic, even if I don't want him to be.
But I also want to make my living at this someday, so I'm going to try to promote my stories. And if that means that I write these chatty blog posts alongside my more polished essays, then that's what I'm going to do.
Please do have a look around. Drop me a comment if you like what you see. I'll be posting my next longer essay once I get a chance to finish drafting the story I'm on write now, and I'll update the situation on the novella shortly after that.