November writing-wrap-up.

And just like that, here we are in December, the last lap of 2022.

November was an active month, y’all. Kevin and I spent the bulk of that time marching toward a deadline on a project we’re doing together, which hasn’t yet been formally announced (see “details,” such as they are, below). A few other things also took up time here and there, and there’s also been some prep work for stories I’m planning to write in the next couple of months. I also have a few “Man, I’d love to write _____” ideas for which I scribbled hasty notes and then set aside to deal with the deadlines right in front of me.

Writer’s life, yo.

Anyway, before I plunge headlong into December, here’s what went down last month:

Unidentified Tie-in Project – As mentioned in a previous blog post, I was approached about taking on this new effort involving an intellectual property with which I’ve not previously worked. After the IP owner approved out outline on August 29th, Kevin and I got to work on this – in and around the various other things on our plate. My best update about our progress is that things are UNDER CONSTRUCTION. We delivered the manuscript in stages on November 5th and the 28th, and we’re expecting to get feedback early next week with an eye toward returning updates before the holidays. We’ve also been told an official announcement about the project and our involvement is coming “soon,” so stay tuned!

Star Trek: Discovery – Somewhere to Belong – The main thing on which I’d been working earlier in the year, but which I was only able to formally announce back on October 10th. I received a set of proofreader’s notes on November 12th and returned them on the 18th, and we’re currently playing with cover concepts. The book is available for pre-order from the usual haunts in trade paperback, eBook, and audiobook formats, and feel free to patronize your local independent footseller if there’s one in your area. As things stand now, it’s slated for publication on Tuesday, May 23, 2023. More details as I’m allowed to share!

Short Story for Unioverse: Stories of the Reconvergence – Another thing I mentioned in that other blog post. Kevin and I received an invitation to participate in this effort. After delivering our manuscript on October 1st, we recieved editorial feedback on November 7th, but that took a back seat as Kevin and I worked on the Big Project. We’re not in a huge rush to have our updates back to the editors, but I don’t want it lingering into the holidays. I’ll likely tackle it next week, after I get past some deadlines for the consulting gig.

Short story for Double Trouble: Two-Fisted Team-UpsThis one came about rather unexpectedly, with me submitting what I admit was a very off-the-cuff pitch to the anthology’s editors, who in turn called my bluff and said they liked it. They’ve since assembled a pretty impressive roster of authors, all of whom have taken on the challenge of creating new stories featuring Public Domain comics and literature heroes of yesteryear as well as a few larger-than-life figures from actual history. The anthology is being produced by the International Association of Media Tie-In Writers and edited by redoubtable wielders of red pens Jonathan Maberry and Keith R.A. DeCandido. We had a successful crowdfunding effort on Kickstarter to support publishing the book, so now I actually have to write the thing! With the Big Project now moving to editing, I’ll have some time to play with this before the holidays.

Short story for another new anthology – This one is going to be a bit different. I haven’t pitched anything, because it’s an open call for submissions, so I’ve decided to just write a story and send it in to be judged. The wrinkle? If all goes to plan, I’ll be writing this with my youngest offspring! The anthology’s theme and the types of stories they’re looking for lend themselves to a collaboration with her, and she expressed keen interest when I posed the idea for her to take the plunge with me. The submission deadline isn’t until mid-January, so there’s plenty of time to hammer out an idea and get the story written. More on this as things (hopefully) progress!

Other stuff in the pipeline:

“Past Sins” for the High Noon On Proxima B anthology – Kevin and I collaborated on a space/weird Western short story for this new collection, coming soon from Baen Books. Everything’s approved and signed off and we’ve been paid, but scheduling and supply chain issues have forced the book’s publication to February 2023. We’re all done with updates and changes, so there’s now nothing left to do but wait. Click the link to read about the antho and its roster of authors!

Short Story for The Four ???? of the Apocalypse – Despite a couple of bumps in the road, Kevin and I were successful in teaming up to spin our own take on The End of the World for an anthology to be published by editors Keith R.A. DeCandido and Wrenn Sims and their new small-press publishing company, Whysper Wude. We delivered our story to said editors last summer and while we made each other laugh pretty hard, it remains to be seen whether anyone else – beginning with our editors and going from there – shares our enthusiasm. Hopefully more info will be forthcoming sometime soon.

Possible future projects:

More fun with Star Trek Adventures After himming and hawing with STA project manager Jim Johnson off and on for several months leading into the fall, I’ve developed some notes for new material I hope to develop for the game. Unfortunately, this one’s going on the back burner, as All The New Things must take precedence, but hopefully I can throw some brain cells at this in and around the other work.

Science Fiction Novella Concept – Back in the summer of 2020, I was invited to participate in what has become a series of novellas all revolving around a Theme I Cannot Yet Publicly Identify. Though the editor already had a slate of entries through 2022, I’m still pondering something I might work for possible 2023 or (more likely) 2024 publication. At this point, I have a basic premise for a story that fits the theme, and after informing Madam Editor of my interest in playing within this particular sandbox, I quickly scribbled some notes and then set them aside, which is where they’ve been as I tend to other, more pressing matters. If schedules permit, I’ll see where I’m at with respect to The Other Things, and go from there.

More Tales from the Vogue Theater – One of the other things Kevin and I decided while writing “Helluoid” for It Came from the Multiplex was that the Vogue Theater, the setting for our 1980s horror tale, could also be the backdrop for other such stories set in different eras. We quickly came up with springboard ideas for stories set in the 1940s, 50s, and 60s, including a prequel of sorts for the original tale. Well, we entertained ourselves, at any rate. At this point, we have no idea what we might do with such a project, but for now just the idea of collaborating on a regular basis has taken hold after last year’s efforts, and we’re both eager to keep the ball rolling. Let’s see what happens!

Original e-Book Concept – I’ve been pondering an idea for a new series – something akin to the “men’s adventure” style books I loved back in the 80s and 90s. It would be a setting for which I could write shorter tales – novellas, likely – for e-Book distribution. It would be something of an SF-ish/action bent, with (I hope) lots of humor. Not quite campy, but definitely lighter in tone. This is still very rough at the moment, but it’s something I’d really like to get into once I get some free time (HAH! HAH AGAIN!).

Original SF Novel Concept – No, this is not the thing mentioned earlier that I played with last month. Instead, this is something I’ve been thinking about — off and on — for a loooooooooooooong time, but it always kept getting back-burnered because of everything else. I haven’t given up on it, but at the moment other things are demanding attention so this one stays on the warmer for a while longer.

And now it’s December. Ho-ho-ho.

Lay it on me.

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