September writing wrap-up.

all-the-wordsOctober? Already? How the hell did that happen?

Those of you who follow this blog with any regularity know that September was something of a hectic month for me, what with that whole “One door closes, another opens” thing with respect to my regular day job employment. If you missed me yammering about that, you can check it out here.

(So, hey! If you’re looking to hire a freelance writer, contact me on the DL, eh? 🙂 )

Despite all the craziness surrounding my change in employment status, I still managed to do some of that writing stuff, including delivering the manuscript for the current novel in-progress (more on that below). I also managed to stay busy with a few other things, and now I’m ramping up for what I hope is a productive October.

So without further ado, here’s the September rundown:

Armageddon’s Arrow – A Star Trek: The Next Generation novel, set after the events of The Fall. I delivered the manuscript to my editor on September 19th, and received her initial notes/feedback earlier this week. I’m tending to those now and expect to return an updated file to her next Monday. The book’s publication date is set for Tuesday, May 26th, 2015. With any luck, pre-order links and related whatevers should be popping up soon. I’ve seen cover art and the copy for the back cover, so hopefully that will be showing up somewhere soon, as well.

When Dreams Meet Reality.” – My monthly contribution to the Novel Spaces blog, which was posted on September 16th. This time around, I recount something that happened a month or so earlier when I was e-Mailed by someone looking to publish a Star Trek novel. Though the answer I gave him likely wasn’t what he wanted to hear, we had a good dialogue and he came away motivated to keep working on his writing. So, that was time well spent, I think.

Article for – The latest installment for my irregularly recurring series for them, “Ten for Ward.” I actually sent this to my editor late last night, and it should maybe go live on the site by the weekend. What’s it about, you ask? Well, you’ll just have to wait and see. 🙂

Star Trek: Seekers #4 – Kevin and I have received, signed, and returned our contracts and even been paid the first portion of our advance, so this definitely will be our next project, once I’ve completed Armageddon’s Arrow. Mister Mack, our partner in crime, is already hard at work on Book #3, and Kevin and are working on our outline, which is due to our editor on or about October 13th, with a manuscript due in the spring. Unlike the first two books which will launch the series, Books 3 and 4 will each be standalone tales “starring,” respectively, the crews of the U.S.S. Sagittarius and Endeavour.

Essay – I was approached back in April about contributing another essay for another collection of such pieces by the good folks at Sequart, who are publishing the aforementioned New Life and New Civilizations this summer. The new book will be titled The Sacred Scrolls: Comics on the Planet of the Apes. I’ll leave it to you to figure out its topic. Now that Armageddon’s Arrow has been delivered, I’ll be channeling some brain cells toward this, which is due to its editor on or before October 31st.

Tie-in novel – Back in May, I was approached by the editor of another tie-in line and offered an opportunity to write for them. I happily accepted that offer, and on August 1st I delivered an outline to my new editor, who has since told me that she’s cool with it and would be forwarding it on to the licensor for review. I’ve signed contracts, but I’m not authorized to release any details about this project yet, except to say that it’s a property for which I’ve never written, but about which I’m totally, totally, totally jazzed. As things stand now, my manuscript will be due in early April. More details will be posted once I get the all-clear to start babbling about it.

And another tie-in project – I actually need to get my butt in gear and get a pitch to the editor for this, as he already accepted my brief, couple-sentence elevator pitch for a story to be included in his forthcoming anthology. I’ve been swamped with…well…everything, but I’m reviewing some relevant material for the property before I send in what I’ve got cooking. This will be another one of those, “More details to come” updates, for now.

Other stuff in the pipeline:

Sequel to From History’s Shadow – I’ve had preliminary discussions with my editor about this, and we are a go. Contracts are on the way and as things stand now, this likely will be the novel I work on after I finish the as yet unnamed tie-in novel and Seekers #4. I’ve got a slew of notes, I’ve ordered a couple of new books to use for research, and so on. I still need to flesh things out and get everything ordered the way I want it for the outline, of course, which likely won’t be until later this fall.

Unnamed Star Trek novel – Along with History’s Shadow II, I also was asked about writing something after that. At this point, I don’t even know what it will be…that’s how nebulous things are this far out (we’re talking publication well into 2016, here). But, contracts are coming for that, too, so there obviously will be some serious thinking about it at some point soon.

Tie-in project – For who knows? Believe it or not, I actually got this thing to a point where I was comfortable handing it off to another party for review. Why? Because this project, assuming it goes forward, will entail collaborating with an artist. The person I hope will be that artist is currently looking over the material, and if he decides he wants to play, then we’ll get going on finalizing the pitch and putting it in front of the “right people.” This would be for someone with whom I’ve not worked before, so I’m not sure at this point what to expect, but, I’m definitely jazzed to get this in front of someone, because FUN.

The Adventures of Space Marshal Dylan McCade: There has been some preliminary talk about a follow-up to “The Terror of Entropia’s Ice Cannon!” That first story ended on something of a cliffhanger, setting up something I was calling “The Rampage of the Runaway Moon!” and even though that originally was meant as a tongue-in-cheek salute to Space: 1999, it’s looking like we may well go for developing this notion. The current plan is to collaborate on a story outline, and from there decide how best to proceed. In the meantime, the first adventure is still available for listening and reading at the Dylan McCade’s page on the SciFi Commons website, and it’s all free for your ears and eyes alike. So, if you haven’t yet sampled it, you need to be setting course thataway. I’ll wait.

“The Enterprise Job” – As 2014 marks the 50th anniversary of the building of the original Enterprise model, and with recent news that it will soon be moved to a more prominent location within the Air & Space Museum as well as possibly receiving a new restoration effort, I told myself that I have to get off my ass and get this finished, formatted, and made available for public consumption and ridicule. This means figuring out how best to get it set up for one of the e-Book venues like Smashwords or whatever, as well as making it available for print-on-demand. I know, I know…”it’s coming.”

Short film script: Kevin and I hatched this notion back in December, as a matter of fact. 2014 also marks another milestone year in the annals of Star Trek history, and as we were talking about some other things we plan to be doing at the forthcoming Starfest convention in Denver, this other idea presented itself. Now that Kevin has experience writing scripts and access to people and resources looking and willing to film such things, we decided we may have the makings of a fun little project. I also have the idea pretty much written out, already, so it’ll largely be a matter of going in and rewriting/freshening up some bits, formatting a 10-15 minute screenplay from that, and then seeing what the next steps are. Mwuah-ah-hah.

Possible future projects:

Another tie-in project – Earlier in June, I was recommended to an editor who was just getting going on ramping up several tie-in efforts, all for properties that would be new to me, writing-wise. I was told earlier in August that the property for which I’d submitted a couple of short pitches has been “put on hold,” so I won’t be doing anything with those, at least for a while. I have no idea if anything will come of this, but the exercise has at least brought me to the attention of another editor who seems keen on putting me to work. So, I guess we’ll see.

And yet another tie-in project – For who knows? Kevin and I originally cooked up this notion while we were in Vegas last year. After some himming and hawing, we finally put together a pitch/outline and delivered it for review back in December. I thought the thing had gone dormant or died on the vine, but I was informed back in early summer that it has been passed up the ladder to the next party who needs to weigh in and either approve or reject it. So, who knows? We might have ourselves a ballgame, here.

Military SF story – A while back, I received a copy of a military SF short fiction anthology – the first in what is to be a recurring series of such books – along with a  handwritten note from its editor that read, “Volume 2 is done. Now send me something for Volume 3!” So, you know…I should probably do something about that. I’ve got a couple of ideas percolating; it’s just a matter of putting nose to the grindstone, etc.

Kid’s story book – Though my original idea (an illustrated story book for younger kids…5-8 range, etc.) might not end up going anywhere, a recent discussion has opened a door to possibly getting this going as part of another, larger project. This would be a licensed product, and things are still very nebulous at the moment as different parties weigh in on this or that, but you can be sure that if anything breaks, I’ll be one jazzed geek.

Original SF novel – Another idea that’s been picking up steam in recent weeks. I’ve revisited a file I had started a while back, refreshed some older notes and added some new ones. I think I may be onto something, and I plan to approach at least one editor with it later this summer, once I get a synopsis/proposal roughed out.

And there it is, as we plunge headlong into the fourth quarter of 2014. As the same goes, Time flies when you’re having fun. Or, as Groucho once said, “Time flies like an arrow. Fruit flies like a banana.”

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