Tag Archives: Island of Glass

Enter the Magic Mirror for #WIPpet Wednesday

Since posting my goals for this round, I haven’t gotten a lot of writing done — only 1000 words. My time has been taken up with other goals: preparing for cover reveal and book launch for Island of Glass, and getting book blurb, bio, and and various other things translated for the translation project (more on that soon — we’re almost there!).

So today we’ll be moving on very quickly to the excerpt of the day for WIPpet Wednesday. Math is super easy: 10 sentences for the 10th month of the year. This excerpt is from Facets of Glass again and follows directly on the one I gave you last week. Dowager Princess Zilia of House Foscari has sent for a witch:

Vanna arrived at Palazzo Foscari in the course of the afternoon, trailed by two servants carrying her magic mirror. The witch had nearly snow white hair that tumbled in curls around her strangely unlined face. The dowager princess had often wondered if this too was some kind of magic — but if it was, why hadn’t Vanna also given her hair the illusion of youth?
“You requested my services, Your Grace?” the witch said after rising from her curtsy, the silk of her skirts swishing richly around her ankles. Witchery was a profitable business in Venice, especially for a witch as talented and powerful as Vanna.
Zilia nodded shortly. “I need you to use your magic mirror to find someone for me.”
“You have something from the hands of this person that will lead the mirror to him or her?”
“I do.” She held out the glass apple.

Ca’ Foscari in Venice, inspiration for my House Foscari in The Glassmakers

WIPpet Wednesday is the brain child of K. L. Schwengel. If you’d like to participate, post an excerpt from your WIP on your blog, something that relates to the date in some way. Then add your link here — where you can also read the other excerpts.

Third quarter stock-taking, a Glassmakers excerpt, and a request

It’s that time of year again, time to take a look at the original list of goals and analyze how things went. I’m pretty pleased with this quarter. Here’s the breakdown:


My original goal was to get 2500 words a week written. At the moment I am regularly producing more than 4000 a week, a definite improvement from my original goal. Another writing goal was to write a detailed outline of Facets of Glass — I am now over 11,000 words into the writing of the actual novella. Of course, I also had a number of goals where I made no progress. For example, I still find it hard to work on any of my collaborations with Jay Lake, so those goals remained untouched this round. Nor did I finish any new short stories. But with the serious progress I’ve made on Facets of Glass and several other longer projects, I’m quite happy with the way things have gone this round, writing-wise. I’m also having so much more FUN than I’ve had in a long time!

I met my blog goals as well. I wrote the blog posts about my research trip to Britain this summer, and I have written several installments of my new series “Starting out as an indie author.”

Writing Business

My batting average on the business side wasn’t quite as good, but I also had quite a few goals. The things I got off of my “writing business” list:

– Started splitting Yseult into episodes and publishing individually
– Got Amazon to price match “The Leaving Sweater” for free
– Edited blog, added ebook as incentive to join mailing list
– Found some reviewers for Chameleon in a Mirror
– Uploaded Island of Glass to Amazon for pre-order and set a publishing date.

This is where I need your help! Island of Glass is now scheduled for publication on Oct. 28, so I’d love some volunteers to help me get the word out. That includes any of the following options:

– Participate in the cover reveal on October 14
– Do an interview with me on your blog
– Have a guest post from me on your blog

Also, if anyone is interested in an advance copy of the novella to review, please let me know! That’s one of the hardest things about new releases, getting the reviews needed to be able to promote it on other sites. (I’m not aggressive enough about this, which was why CIAM was reviewless for months.)

Naturally I’m not asking you to do all these things — I’m grateful for any help at all that I can get. I got some inspiration from Amy here and would like to return the favor too. 🙂 I’d be happy to feature all of you on my blog in upcoming weeks — with the caveat that interviews and guest posts should be about indie publishing, given the slant of my blog. But if you’re not an indie writer, I’ll still be happy to post a plug to your book.

If you can help, please let me know either in the comments below, in email, or on Facebook. Thanks!

On to WIPpet Wednesday. For the first time, I’m going to post an excerpt from the second book in The Glassmakers Trilogy, Facets of Glass. Today’s date, the 24th, gives me 2+4 = 6 short paragraphs, which I hope will pique your interest:

Dowager Princess Zilia of House Foscari gazed at the apple of glass that had come with the invitation from Prague. It had little resemblance to the typical art of Bohemian glass, usually thick goblets decorated with deep cuts that reflected the light like the facets of diamonds, or somewhat finer works enhanced by detailed engravings.
This apple was different. She admired the nonchalant artistry, the combination of realism and artifice, the delicacy of the glass — as thin as the cristallo of Murano. The kind of glass that had not been seen anywhere in the world before, other than from the glassmakers in the service of Venice.
The Bohemian glassworks had never before produced glass as thin and delicate as this. Nor had they ever worked in colored glass in this way, at least not to Zilia’s knowledge.
She held the apple, one half red, one half green, up to the light, examining the way the colors flowed into each other almost as naturally as a real apple. The brown stem and green leaves at the top completed the illusion. She turned the apple in her hands, only to discover a small hole, around which had been placed brown residue like that from a worm.
Zilia stared at the wormhole of glass, and all she could think of were a pair of glass slippers with their carelessly tied ribbons. Shoes of glass so strong and so fine, they had captured the heart of her son, Prince Vittore.
Those slippers had been made by a young maestra from Murano, Chiara Dragoni — who had disappeared over a year ago in the lagoon of Venice.

Glass Apple by Bill Brooks on Flickr
Glass Apple (c) Bill Brooks on Flickr, cc license

WIPpet Wednesday is the brain child of K. L. Schwengel. If you’d like to participate, post an excerpt from your WIP on your blog, something that relates to the date in some way. Then add your link here — where you can also read the other excerpts.

Slowly getting back to writing: My quarterly accounting post

Those who follow this blog will know that I took some time off from writing the last couple of weeks to give my mourning brain a break. When the mourning seemed to be going on a bit to long, I remembered the letter from Clarion West in my inbox and signed up for the Clarion West Write-a-thon again this year. That started on Monday, and I haven’t quite reached my goal of 500 words a day, but almost: 400 a day on Monday and Tuesday, and 500 on Wednesday. At least it’s helping with my main goal — getting back into writing regularly again.

Now for the accounting, my goals at the beginning of the quarter and what became of them.


– Work on writing related projects every day. Once the Big Translation Project is done, return to daily page goals.
I mostly did this, except for the first couple of weeks in June after Jay died. Life happens, and so does death, and sometimes we just can’t push forward with our goals as a result. Some things are more important than writing a few more pages.

– Move forward on A Wasted Land
I have done so, if slowly.

– Finish edits on Recontact (collab eith Jay Lake)
Finished a first round of edits and put the novella through the Villa Diodati workshop in Spain the beginning of May. I have yet to integrate the critiques I got there.

Finish edits on Island of Glass

– Start Facets of Glass
Started, yes, but barely. 🙂

– Write 2 new short stories
Wrote one and started a second.


Be done with the Big Translation Project by the end of April

Writing business:

Publish Island of Glass
DONE! Well, at least for the paperback. 🙂 I still have to arrange some promotion and set a date for the publication of the ebook.

– Publish Recontact (novella with Jay Lake)
I did not finish this in time, unfortunately. 😦 But since I didn’t, I think I may send it around to some magazines first. That might bring in more money for Jay’s daughter and widow than an ebook would.

– Publish “The Shadow Artist” as ebook

– Upload “Leaving Sweater” to Smashwords and make it free
Didn’t upload to Smashwords, but free books through Draft2Digital are now also going free on B&N, which is slowly making Smashwords obsolete, as far as I’m concerned, seeing as their Meatgrinder (their term, not mine) is so difficult to format for. I have better things to do than uploading a book half-a-dozen times. With Draft2Digital, if it doesn’t work the first time, it usually works on the second, and it’s a lot faster to boot. Anyway, “The Leaving Sweater” is now free on both B&N and iTunes. I just have to get Amazon to price match.

– Publish “Mars, A Traveler’s Guide” to Amazon and make it free

Make Author Page for Amazon.de
DONE! You can check it out here.

– Submit a short story a week to traditional publishers
Not quite. Only 7 story submissions this quarter.

– Start marketing my ebooks again
I’m afraid not. Which of course is reflected in my abysmal sales. But I am well aware that I have only myself to blame, and nothing will change until I put my marketing hat back on again.

I don’t have a lot of strike-outs above, but I’m ok with that. Like I said, death happens, and if I started kicking myself for crying too much because a friend died, what kind of person would I be?

And looking at my list, I managed to get more done than I thought, so I’m good. I hope everyone else is happy with their progress.

Jay Lake, June 6, 1964 - June 1, 2014

Clarion West Write-a-thon to the rescue!

I continue to be extremely listless writing-wise since Jay Lake’s death. I’ve been keeping busy, though. I finally organized my trip to Britain for a friend’s wedding the beginning of July. I’ll be staying a couple of extra days to research some sites for A Wasted Land.

This weekend, we also went to the Bodensee / Lake Constance, with a short jog into Switzerland to see the Rheinfall, the Rhine Falls. That was a lot of fun.


Rhine Falls in Switzerland

It inspired us to promise each other to get away a bit more again. Since we bought our little piece of property, we haven’t been doing much in the way of weekend excursions anymore. Who’s going to water the tomatoes, after all??? Which are looking quite good, btw. Still green, but we are harvesting other things already.

A modest harvest

I want to thank those of you who volunteered to help out with the ebook launch of Island of Glass in the comments of my last post. I will try to get back to you in the next couple of days. I’ve been doing about as much social media in recent weeks as I have writing — next to none.

Given my lack of creativity, I’ve been beta-reading. I also got back to a project I’ve been putting together for my dad, a book of photographs and some travel reports from our trip to Norway on the Hurtigruten a couple of years back. And I will publish it too! But it’s not the kind of writing I want to be doing.

So today, to add a little accountability and structure to my attempt to get back to writing, I signed up for the Clarion West Write-a-thon. You can check out my page here. My goals are very modest this round — an average of 500 words a day, five days a week, 15,000 words for the six weeeks of Clarion West. Mostly I’m hoping that it will help me get back to better writing habits again. Besides, I’ll be away in Britain for a week, and I still intend to make the total of 15,000. As I said, very modest, but better than a paragraph here and there between editing and formatting jobs!

Wishing everyone a successful week. 🙂

The last excerpt from Island of Glass and a request

First off, I want to apologize for being such a bad blogger-friend and WIPpeteer in the last couple of weeks. Normally, I always try my best to at least return the favor and post on the blogs of those who posted on mine. But since my dear friend Jay Lake was admitted to hospice and died only a few days later, I haven’t even managed to respond to the comments on my own blog. I hope you will all forgive me.

For over the last week, I haven’t been doing much new writing, allowing my creative brain to recover a bit from mourning. Instead, I returned to Island of Glass, a project I’d put on ice when I heard that Jay’s condition was rapidly deteriorating, and switched to our last novella, Recontact — which I didn’t finish in time, unfortunately.

Anyhoo, my writing work so far this month has revolved around final editng, formatting, bio and blurb writing, and making the paperback cover for Island of Glass. I’m publishing this project ass-backward, for reasons I will explain later, and am doing the Createspace (hard copy) version first. Most of you have already seen the beautiful cover for the novella done by Rachel Cole of Littera Designs. Based on that, I started a paperback cover, which my daughter cleaned up, given her superior Photoshop skills. I then added the spine and back description:


It will probably be about two weeks before I publish the ebook version of the novella. If anyone would like to help out with a cover reveal, an interview, or anything else, please let me know, either in the comments or email. I’m happy to return the favor. 🙂

The last time I posted an excerpt from Island of Glass, Chiara had just presented decorative glass slippers to Prince Vittore. To her dismay, he is determined to try them on. (BTW, I have no math for this week’s WIPpet, just a snippet ending on a nice cliffhanger.) Here is what follows the last excerpt:

Once his feet were encased in no more than fine silk stockings, the prince looked at her. “Signorina Dragoni, the slippers please?”
He obviously meant for her to put the shoes on his feet herself. She repressed a sigh and fetched them from the side table. Kneeling in front of the prince, she lifted his right foot, slid the glass over his toes, and pushed it onto his heel.
To Chiara’s astonishment, it was a perfect fit.
“Amazing, Maestra!” Prince Vittore exclaimed. “I have had custom-made dancing slippers that do not fit as well as this crystal work of art. I will be curious to see if the second shoe is as perfect a fit as the first.”
She picked up the second shoe and looked up into the prince’s eyes. “My prince, even if by some miracle this slipper too fits, please do not try to walk on them. They are glass, they cannot hold your weight. They will break and cut you.”
He lifted her chin a touch higher with one finger. “Nonsense, my dear. As you say, it is a miracle. We are living in an age of magic, after all. You may not have grown used to that fact, but I am fortunate enough to deal with magic on a daily basis. I may be mistaken, but these shoes seem touched by magic.”
“I am no wielder of magic, Your Highness. I am a glassmaker.” She wasn’t about to tell him about the magic of Signora Gutfe, some of which she had learned.
He smiled. “And as a glassmaker, you must admit that glass itself is often much like magic. Or am I wrong?”
She nodded. Cristallo was the most magical substance she knew — and the stones for this glass had been delivered by the birds she had foreseen in the oil on Signora Gutfe’s serving tray.
“The second shoe, Signorina?” the prince reminded her gently.
Praying he was right about the magic in the shoes she had made, she pushed the second one onto the royal foot.
“Again, perfect!”
Prince Vittore rose. The glass slippers held.
From her kneeling position, she watched as the prince strode around the audience chamber. She was not the only one staring — the guards and servants all watched, their mouths half open in surprise. Sunlight from the high windows streamed into the room, and the slippers tinkled with bright music when they touched marble. The prince paced in front of an immense mirror, more expert work from the glassmakers of Murano, and admired his reflection. Cristallo, clear and in shades of red and blue, glittered in the spring sunlight, and the colorful slices of millefiori on the carelessly tied rosettes seemed to dance with the prince’s steps.
He halted in front of her and held out his hand. Chiara took it and rose.
“Did I not tell you there was magic in these shoes?” he murmured close to her ear.
“You did, my prince.” She tried to pull her hand out of his grasp, as was proper, but he held her fingers tight.
Once again, he lifted her chin with one finger. She repressed the urge to jerk her head away.
“Rich, beautiful, talented, unusual, and with hands like an angel and perfect knowledge of my feet.” He gazed at her with a slight smile and an intensity that scared her. “I believe I will marry you, my little glassmaker.”

WIPpet Wednesday is the brain child of K. L. Schwengel. If you’d like to participate, post an excerpt from your WIP on your blog, something that relates to the date in some way. Then add your link here — where you can also read the other excerpts. 🙂

Looking for feedback on map and description for Island of Glass

As I’ve mentioned in my last couple of posts, I have once again switched from creative, “new words” mode to editing and formatting mode. But I think once I have Island of Glass published, my brain will be out of mourning enough that I can I can get back to creating new words on a fairly regular basis. On Saturday, I woke up dreaming about the story I want to write in the Villa Diodati shared world that I mentioned here. That inspired me to call up the file, and I added nearly 500 words to my tale.

Other than that, this week I’ve been beta reading and putting together the glossary, author notes and other back matter for Island of Glass. All of that did actually add up to 2200 new words — just not fiction. Still, together that gives me 2700 words for the week, much better than I expected.

I also made a map for Island of Glass. As a basis, I used Ignazio Danti‘s 16th century map, pretty close to the era in which my story is set:

Venice map for Island of Glass

So what do you all think?

I also write a description for the book. I’d love feedback on this as well:

Seventeen-year-old Chiara Dragoni is a master glassmaker of Venice, a position that is both a privilege — and a trap. For the glassmakers of Murano are forbidden to ever leave the islands of the Venetian lagoon.

When Chiara’s uncle is caught on the mainland and thrown into the dungeon of the Doge’s Palace, she must use all her talents, including magic, to help free him. But the gift she creates for the ruling prince of Venice has unintended consequences, and now Chiara must decide whether to give up everything — and everyone — she knows and loves to save her dream.

Wishing everyone a wonderful and productive week. Me, I’m hoping it cools down a bit here in Central Europe. Right now, we have all the blinds down to keep the heat out, and it’s kinda dark in here …

#WIPpet Wednesday: Walking on Broken Glass?

It’s Wednesday again, and I’m still revising Island of Glass. (I don’t think I’ll get back to any new writing until the translation project is finished.)

To keep things simple, I’m giving you 9 paragraphs for the 9th day of the month. In this excerpt, which follows immediately on the one I gave you last week, Chiara has presented glass slippers to a prince of Venice, and he is very enthusiastic about them, perhaps too much so:

Chiara didn’t know what to say. She could only hope that beneath his smiles and chuckles he wasn’t offended. Her plan to gain the prince’s favor was backfiring badly.
“Talented, beautiful, and unusual,” the prince continued. “And quite rich as well, I presume?”
She could tell from the heat of her cheeks that they must be flaming by now. She nodded mutely.
He raised one expertly plucked, aristocratic eyebrow. “And you want me to free your uncle.”
She almost heaved a sigh of relief at his change of subject. She hoped that was the end of his attempts to flirt with her; flirtation was not one of Chiara’s strong points. “The Fenice Glassworks cannot be run properly without Gianfranco Dragoni,” she said. “Surely the Council of Ten cannot wish for such a situation. The taxes we pay are an important source of revenue for Venice, after all.”
He didn’t answer, staring instead at the matching glass slippers. “I wonder if they would fit me. They look to be my size.” He glanced at her again with a suggestive smile. “As if you knew me intimately, my dear.”
Oh, no, she hoped he didn’t intend to actually try the slippers on! They were decorative, not meant to be worn. If they broke and cut his princely foot, he would probably throw her into the prison of the Doge’s palace right alongside Uncle Gian.
He sank into the nearest lavishly upholstered chair and snapped his fingers. “Remove my shoes,” he said to the servant who appeared at his side.
Chiara watched the proceedings, trying to remain composed, given her panic at what would surely happen next.

WIPpet Wednesday is the brain child of K. L. Schwengel. If you’d like to participate, post an excerpt from your WIP on your blog, something that relates to the date in some way. Then add your link here — where you can also read the other excerpts. 🙂

Blog Hop: My Writing Process

I was recently tagged to take part in the “Writing Process Blog Tour” by the lovely and talented K. L. Schwengel. This particular “meme” (as these things are referred to nowadays) is about authors sharing something about your writing process by answering four questions. In turn, we pass the torch to other authors. This way, it spreads like wildfire. When I googled “Writing Process Blog Tour” I got almost 24,000,000 hits. 🙂

Anyway, here’s my own contribution to the meme:

1) What am I working on?

Right now I have two main projects going:
A Wasted Land, the third novel in my Pendragon Chronicles series that started with Yseult: A Tale of Love in the Age of King Arthur. This novel revolves around Yseult’s son Kustennin and the fate of Britain after the Battle of Camlann, when former alliances begin to fall apart and the Saxon kingdoms on the fringes of Britain are growing stronger again. I’ve been working on this one for over a year now, since the publication of Yseult and Shadow of Stone — and a number of readers started asking for more — but for some reason, it’s still not completely coming together for me.
– Final revisions for Island of Glass, a YA novella. The novella tells the story of Chiara, a young glassmaker of Murano, who makes glass shoes for a prince of Venice to help save her uncle from prison. But the magic works in a different way than she had imagined…
– At any give time, I also have several other projects in the works. Right now that includes revising a novella I wrote with Jay Lake for publication, Recontact, as well as brainstorming further works in the worlds of Island of Glass and Looking Through Lace.

2) How does my work differ from others of its genre?

Anyone brings their own experience, their own way of looking at the world to what they write. Not only that, we each have different priorities, different interests, and different kinds of stories that move us the most. Any author who writes out of their own experience and interests is going to produce distinctive work, work that is recognizable in some way.

5th century Britain
One of my passions is for historical maps and what they signify. Make of that what you will. 🙂

For me, a couple of the interests that probably distinguish my work is my interest in literature, politics, linguistics, and cultural differences in general. For example, there is a lot of big picture cultural conflict in my Arthurian novels, Yseult and Shadow of Stone, probably more than is generally common in that genre. Or take my science fiction novellas in the Looking Through Lace series: they revolve around the linguistic and cultural misunderstandings of a first contact mission.

3) Why do I write what I do?

I write the books I would want to read, it’s as simple as that. My books and short stories contain the things that move me: events that break my heart, topics that get my back up or that I’m passionate about, my fears and my dreams.
I tend to package those passions in the genres of science fiction and fantasy because those are the genres I most enjoy reading. I have enough contemporary in everyday life. What I read and what I write is somewhere beyond or apart from that.

4) How does my writing process work?

Before I start writing a novel or short story, I usually do a lot of brainstorming and pre-writing in longhand on scrap paper and in cheap, sprial-bound notebooks. I’ve tried to use those beautiful Paperblanks notebooks for the purpose, but they’re too intimidating. I guess in order to free my playful brain, I need something that looks like it can be thrown away if it’s crap.
Once I’ve worked out the basic details of my world, my characters, and my plot, and have started playing with ideas for scenes to go with all of that, then I will start writing, jumping around here and there in the timeline as more scene ideas and plot twists occur to me. I don’t have everything mapped out from the moment I start to write, but neither can I start without any inkling of where the story is going to go. At the very least, I need to know the ending, so I will know what to shoot for.

An now, the folks who will be answer these question next! I did write three other writers, but one didn’t respond. Without further ado, here are my two “followers” who will be posting next week:

Shah Wharton: Shah loves fiction; horror, paranormal mystery, dark fantasy, and sci-fi are her favourites, although she also enjoys dark comedy, some romance, and an occasional young adult fantasy. She also writes poetry (two published in anthologies), short stories (one published), and ghost writes fiction as a freelancer.

Shah studied psychology, hypnotherapy, and counselling eons ago and once worked in a social work capacity with children, women with mental health issues and the homeless until her own mental health issues began to encroach on her abilities in 2005. She is an advocate for mental health awareness and speaks freely on her blog about how bipolar disorder has impacted her life.

As an infant, Shah’s father taught her to appreciate the written word through poetry. Now you’ll usually find her immersed in a story while slurping tea, cuddled up with her little family. Shah lives with her huge German Shepherd and her husband, anywhere between Dubai and United Kingdom.

Outside of reading and writing, Shah enjoys theatre, movies, zombies, varied music from old jazz to rock, travel, great food … and dogs.

Adrian J. Smith, or “AJ” as she is often called, is a part-time writer with an epic imagination, sharp wit, and kind heart that gets her into a bit of trouble when it comes to taking in all the neighborhood stray cats. Being obsessed with science fiction, Smith often goes off on tangents about the space-time continuum. She is also a part-time lunatic with a secretive past. It’s been rumored that she was once a spy for the government, but anyone who has gotten close enough to know the truth has never lived to tell the tale. When traveling around the world on various classified tasks, Smith requires the following be provided: buffalo jerky, mimosas, and eighty-six pennies. This is all we know about the reclusive woman.

This #WIPpet Wednesday: Glass slippers for a prince — and the consequences

I’m still working on (hopefully final) revisions for Island of Glass. With my daughter visiting, there’s a lot less time for writing and translating, and the translation job has to come first. So this week, my WIPpet will again be from my glassmaking fairy tale.

Last week, someone said they would love to see the shoes, and I promised to provide a description. Now this is certainly a lovely glass slipper, but Chiara’s is even cooler:

Glass slipper art

I want to provide the description of Chiara’s art, but at the same time, I want to move the story forward a little bit. So this week I’m going to give you two short excerpts from the novella, 4 paragraphs each for the month, 4 from the completion of the glass shoes, and 4 from the scene of the prince’s reaction to the gift:

“Pasquale, could you heat the millefiori rod for me? I want to make a rosette for the front of the shoe.”
He grinned and pulled on an apron. “As the maestra commands.”
She extended the shoe into the heat again, while Pasquale prepared the rod that would become its laces.
When both of the glass evening slippers were completed, the workers in the hot shop stood back, admiring Chiara’s art. The blue glass of the shoes were decorated with glittering gems of clearest cristallo, and the rosettes at the front made of a mosaic of pure, colorless glass, combined with slices of colorful millefiori. The strips appeared tied together with the carelessness of a real shoe. The red heels had the exact curve of the elegant slippers preferred by the nobility of Venice.

So those are the glass slippers, and this is the way the prince reacts after receiving them. This snippet comes directly after the one I provided last week:

Chiara blushed, glancing at her footmen, his guards, and his secretary. They all stared into the distance with that lack of expression servants cultivated, as if they didn’t hear a thing. She knew that wasn’t true. Although the prince’s words had not been loud, they were easily audible to all in the room. But footmen and guards obviously did not matter to him — he treated them as little more than pieces of furniture.
He noted the direction of her gaze. “Do you want me to send them away?”
“No, please do not for my sake.” She tried to keep any hint of panic out of her voice.
He chuckled, placing the second slipper next to its mate on the gilded side table. “Most young women scheme for the opportunity to be alone with a prince of La Serenissima. Yet here you are, offered the chance, and you turn it down.”

WIPpet Wednesday is the brain child of K. L. Schwengel. If you’d like to participate, post an excerpt from your WIP on your blog, something that relates to the date in some way. Then add your link here — where you can also read the other excerpts. 🙂

It’s accounting time again! Me and my goals, first quarter 2014

Long, long ago, when I first came to Germany, I was given the nickname “Nessie” (for my last name), and I liked it so much, I kept it. Who wouldn’t want to be a big green sea monster, after all? Anyway, my son got me this excellent T-Shirt, which I think is very appropriate for a post where I have to fess up to all the things I didn’t accomplish in this round:


In case you can’t read the words, they’re “The important thing is that I believe in myself.”

Anyway, on to the accounting for the first Round of Words in 2014:


– Write every day, aiming for at least a page, or 250 words. This is really low for me, and once I manage to catch up on the translation, I can raise my goals. At that point, I will also add some specific project goals.

I did work on writing projects almost every day, but it was more revising and editing than creating new words. Still, as long as I continue to work consistently towards my writing goals, I’m pretty happy with myself.


– Be done with the Big Translation Project by the end of the round

Not quite. I am now on page 257 of 303. At least the finish line is in sight now. Maybe I can get it done before the next round starts.

Writing business:

– Publish Chameleon in a Mirror

– Publish Island of Glass

Nope. Only recently got the comments back from the final beta reader, so I’m still working on revisions on that one.

– Publish “The Shadow Artist”

– Upload “Leaving Sweater” to Smashwords and make it free
‘Fraid not.

– Publish Shadow of Stone to B&N, Smashwords and D2D

– Publish “Mars, A Traveler’s Guide” to Amazon and make it free
No such luck.

– Make Author Page for Amazon.de and Amazon.uk

I made my author page for Amazon UK! It’s not live yet, though. I’ll provide the link when I have it. I still need to do Amazon.de.

– Update my blog’s book page
DONE!! You can see the new page here.

– Submit a short story a week to traditional publishers

Not quite. I submitted four short stories this round, of which three have already been rejected. I added this goal late, but I still should have had twice the submissions. Maybe next time!

I did have a long list of goals, and the translation is keeping me very busy, so despite all the goals I didn’t achieve, I’m still pretty happy. Hope the rest of you are too!