Monday, May 23, 2011

Under the Moon

Under the Moon has offered a contract for Remnant in the Stars ... with the understanding that it's going to need a pretty sturdy edit.


Sunday, May 1, 2011

Under the Moon

After Virtual Tales collapsed, the board of directors there used their contacts to try to connect all the newly orphaned writers, artists, and editors with other publishers.  One of those was Under the Moon.  They publish speculative fiction that could work as a role playing game (RPG).  Remnant in the Stars, if you track it all the way back through its massive revision history, started out as a short story based on an RPG session with some friends.  You'd hardly know it now to look at the original short story and what the manuscript finally turned into.  So, I decided to take a chance on it.  So far, UTM has accepted the query, requested the first three chapters, liked those, and is now considering the whole manuscript.

Could be very exciting!

Monday, April 11, 2011

Virtual Tales

Virtual Tales has folded.  There was a last ditch effort to keep it afloat as a co-op, but that didn't pan out.  Too many of us have too many irons in the fire as it is and couldn't take on the necessary tasks to make it fly.  There were too many skills that none of us had. 

Nevertheless, the rumors flying around that VT wasn't playing fair with the writers is all junk.  They weren't trying to "shake us down for more of the royalties" or anything of that sort.  They're good people ... who just got burned out running VT and trying to hold down "normal" jobs and families. They're using their contacts now to try to find homes for all the orphaned titles.

No ill will.  No hard feelings.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Compiling Notes

So, now I'm working with an editor so we can get Remnant in the Stars into publication shape.  While she's having a gander at the manuscript, I'm preparing other stuff like marketing info.  Most of my time, however, has been going into filling out a questionnaire for the cover artist.  There's nothing unreasonable about the request, but it's taking me some time to scare up all the information and translate my notes from "shorthand that makes sense to me" to "notes that make sense to normal humans."  I'm just about at the end of that adventure.  I have one last question to answer, and then I'll reread the whole thing to make sure it's clear.  Then it's off to the next part!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Virtual Tales

It's official!  I have a contract with Virtual Tales to publish my novel, Remnant in the Stars!

If an astrogator leaves with the humans, his absence could harm his youngest child, but he could find not only his missing daughter but also forgiveness for himself.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

New News!

I've been away for a while.  School has kept me busier than a 1-armed wallpaper hanger, but there wasn't much of note to report.  We're entering TAKS season.  That's the state-mandated testing, and since they're changing the test to the STAAR test next year, this year's ratings will hold for two years while everyone learns to adjust to the new test.  There's a lot of pressure to get good numbers because they hold for so long, so I've been eyeball deep in trying to arrange interventions and remediation and extra help for the collection of little donuts in my crowd while trying to keep behavioral goofiness under control. 

It keeps me busy, but it's not very interesting.

Then I had a new development this week that IS very interesting.  Back in August or so, I submitted proposals for 2 novels to different publishing houses.  Both are pretty small.  I never heard anything from one.  The other publisher asked for the full manuscript of the one I sent that way, but then seemed to disappear.  I received an email this week from Virtual Tales.  They've been trying to reach me since November, but between their spam catcher and mine, nothing got through until the marketing director used her personal email account to send me a note. 

Virtual Tales offered me a contract on Remnant in the Stars!  :-D 

After checking over the contract and doing a little more research, I signed it and sent it back. 

I'll post about this new adventure as things develop.  Exciting times ahead!

Sunday, January 2, 2011


There's a new trend in education suggesting that from middle school on, boys should be in a school with only boys and girls should be in a school with only girls.  It's a nice theory, but I don't think it'll work in practice.  The idea is to get the kids in a situation where they only consider their education, not the opposite gender.  Some one-gender-only schools are getting started, and I feel sorry for the teachers at the all-girls schools.

Yes, it's true that boys get more boisterous.  I've had years when the guys outnumbered the girls in my class 2:1, and class control was a challenge.  I'm sure that when you throw in a few extra years, that gets even more exciting, but problems between guys are generally more obvious.  They telegraph themselves an hour before they arrive and when things blow up, it looks like a whole lot of pushing and shoving and smacking things.  The problems are all out in the open and they're easier to defuse and deal with.

Girl problems are sneaky.  The drama is exponentially increased.  Things fester under the surface for days, weeks, months, even years before BOOM!  It all blows apart like Mt. Vesuvius.  Out of nowhere you get cat fights and name calling and general all purpose backbiting over stupid things like "she stepped on my shoelaces" or "she won't play with me" or "SHE is the friend of HER and WE don't like HER so SHE can't be our friend either."  Teachers end up spending 90% of their time putting out the fires after these explosions and dealing with ticked off parents who call and demand to know why the teacher hasn't dealt with a problem the teacher didn't even know about because it hadn't reached the explosive stage yet.

Argh.  Well, that'll have to work itself out while I try to stay neutral.

In the meantime, I'm still working on my writing adventures.

ACFW (American Christian Fiction Writers) is sponsoring a writing contest for those who haven't published anything in the last 7 years.  I'm going to enter it, so I've been working on my contest entries and pushing onward with Bird's Eye.  A critique partner just clued me in on some facts of military engagements that I knew nothing about.  Namely, when you take on an enemy in an entrenched position, expect casualty rates >80%.  O.o  Yikes.  I knew it was high ... but not that high.

That makes my current plot ideas unrealistic and unworkable, and that may take a significant rewrite of the ideas I had for the last half of the book.  O.o  Better to find these things now than before I spend a couple gazillion hours writing a draft I have to chunk the back half of.