I find that occasionally stating my goals helps me get more accomplished, especially if I put them up someplace public. So, here goes.
Front and center:
My current project is a historical fantasy trilogy set in an alternate World War II with most of the action of the first two books set in Edinburgh and the third traveling from there to Dachau. It’s quite dark and it’s YA. The Black School which is the first of them is my second YA novel so far, as cracking the YA market is my next major goal. I’m hoping to knock off six thousand or so words of that in the next couple of days. I’m really excited about this one.
Submission Novels: This is the stuff that’s out looking for a home or waiting for a response, any of which could become my main project with no warning. That includes Cybermancy, the WebMage sequel, contracted and handed in but as yet unread by my editor. The Urbana and Uriel, both being held by my editor for further consideration. Winter of Discontent, out with another editor. Numismancer, likewise. And Chalice: Artbreak, the aforementioned other YA, on the desk of my agent who plans to get it in the mail shortly.
Complete Shorts: At the moment I’ve got exactly zero short stories out and I need to fix that, so some time in the next month or two I need to sit down, re-read all my shorts, make some adjustments, and figure out who might be interested in what. I’d like to have at least ten stories back in the mail by the end of October.
Unfinished Shorts: I’ve got about six shorts that need to be completed or rewritten, but I have no idea when I’m going to find the time.
Unfinished Novels: I have a several chapters of a contemporary fantasy novel, Outside In (a secret history of architecture), sitting and waiting for me to get back to it. Likewise a mystery, Ave Caesar, which is supposed to be the first of series of light murder mysteries set in theater and film productions with an actor as the detective.
Trunk Novels: Apprentice Assassin, book I of the Assassin Mage trilogy (written three years before the appearance of the Robin Hobb book of similar title and bearing no resemblance to same). This one is awaiting a rewrite to convert it from a high fantasy general market book into a YA and is my lowest priority at the moment since it’s the first of a trilogy I’m not up for finishing at the moment. The Swine Prince, a high fantasy farce that’s ninety percent rewritten. It just needs a new first three chapters to get it out the door, so maybe ten days worth of work counting reread and rewrite. I’m hoping to get to that one within the next year so it will stop giving me guilt-inducing looks whenever I pass it in my files.
(Originally published on the Wyrdsmiths blog Sept 11th 2006. Reposted as part of the reblogging project )
Following up on the current state of the above: I finished The Black School and its sequel The Eye of Horus. That project is still looking for a home and it contains some of my best writing and worldbuilding to date. Cybermancy is currently going into a second printing, which makes at least two print run for each of the five WebMage books (WebMage is in its 5th or 6th run). Uriel is more or less permanently trunked. Winter of Discontent, The Urbana, and Numismancer are all still all under submission, currently as a package deal. Swine Prince is out somewhere as well. Apprentice Assassin did not get rewritten but it did get stripped for parts for the Fallen Blade books. Outside In and Ave Caesar are both benched, though I still have vague hopes of finishing them in my copious free time. I stopped writing and submitting short stories almost entirely, though I have published one of my backlist shorts since then and written another on request which will be out soon.
(The original post also included questions, but, as I’ve elected not to enable comments at kellymccullough.com, I’m separating them out below and people’s answers can be found at the Wyrdsmiths version):
What are y’all working on? What do you hope to get done soon? What’s sitting in your trunk making rude noises and inducing writer’s guilt?