Thursday, February 28, 2013

And the Beat Goes On

Yes, so, lots has happened, and lots continues to happen. And much of it is interesting. And, uh, I really should be blogging about it, shouldn’t I? That means this is most definitely going to be a scattershot, bunch of little updates, ITEM: Stephen likes pie! kind of thing:

I had kind of a blah start to the year. It was grey and cold and I was fighting a bug of some sort and needed to sleep a lot. So I got really stalled out and didn’t make a whole lot of progress on any creative front (or with exercising, for that matter). Until…

My writers group went on a weekend mini-retreat. We got out of Toronto (on the night of a big snowstorm, no less) and spent a couple of days at a cottage near Grand Bend. It was awesome to be able to go heads-down for an extended period of time, and it let me push through the morass. I owe big thanks to: Claire, who thought of and organized the whole deal; her family, for generously allowing us to use their cottage that weekend; and of course to my co-parent and partner Sarah, without whose support a weekend away would not have been possible.

I came back feeling creatively rejuvenated, and I’m currently working away on the script for the next story-line for my webcomic, Cold Iron Badge. It’s still going a little slower than I’d like, but you, know, I have the time to write that I have. Any progress beats the heck out of no progress.

And on the subject of Progress, I haven’t been blogging here much so far this year, but I have been blogging. Greg Beettam and I have blown the dust off the long-dormant Xeno’s Arrow website, and we’re adding new content there regularly, about four posts a week on average. No new comics or story material yet, but Greg’s providing a look at the process of creating our characters, including never-before-seen art, in his Sketchbook Diaries. I’m doing blog posts going into our processes of collaboration and co-writing, and also contributing brand-new Appendices that explore the Known Galaxy of Xeno’s Arrow.

Appendices were prose features, sometimes illustrated, sometimes not, that we ran at the back of issues of Xeno’s Arow, after the comic. They were part of the universe, but not part of the story – usually presented as excerpts from books or articles from somewhere in the Known Galaxy that allowed us to explore and detail elements of the setting that fell outside the frame of our characters and their adventures. They were always tremendous fun to write and I’m having a great time doing that again!

And there may be, very possibly may be, some more news on the Xeno’s Arrow front. That’s pending some other elements falling into place, so nothing’s confirmed yet. If something’s happening, it’ll most likely happen later this spring. Even the prospect has me really excited, but I don’t want to get ahead of myself.

Meanwhile, I've heard back from most of the beta readers who very kindly had a look at my novel, and I'm starting to think about the final round of revisions. Depending on how long it takes to finish the script, that may be my Big March Project. After which... wow, after that I have to start thinking about finding representation by submitting it to agents. 

Still creeping their way up the to-do list: Regular exercise, my next novel, and another entirely different writing project that I've been kicking around that would be an absolutely insane amount of fun, if I could pull it off. 

More updates, perhaps not quite as they happen, but pretty close. Stay tuned!