I have not found time for blogging for a number of reasons. First, my wife and I are expecting our first child any day now. Second, I’ve been busy getting our home ready, spending much of my time finishing our basement. And lastly, I took a new job and am working to get accustomed to everything.
However, I was able to finish off an outline for my next book. I’m excited to get started soon on a political thriller that I hope will be published in the traditional sense someday.
I’m looking forward to having a short story be published in the coming months and to get going on this new project. I will check back soon!
If you read any literary blogs, you will almost always see writers discuss the important of setting aside time to write. I couldn’t agree more, but it is easier said than done. We all have lives and some, like me, have day jobs. When I begin writing I’m immersed but am often distracted.
My solution is to set aside one hour in the morning and write as much as possible. The earlier, the better. I also find my creative juices flow better then anyway. By limiting myself to an hour I have a finite amount to get things done. This keeps me motivated.
Everyone is different, but I thought I’d share what works for me.
And now comes the hard part – editing and rewriting!
With 118 chapters and 88,000 words, my second novel is done. Well, done in the sense I have finished the bulk of writing. I still have to edit and do any necessary rewrites. But the story is complete and I am excited.
The process took longer than I anticipated due to some unexpected life changes and setbacks. Luckily, things are back on track and I was able to find enough time to get it done.
I will not put down every observation but I just wanted to point out that my story ended up very differently than I had planned. I imagine this is a common symptom of writing a novel. The main character drove the story for me. And I could not be happier with the result. I cannot wait to see the polished product and begin shopping it to literary agents.
Although I have a few more book ideas I am going to focus on writing short stories. I would like to have a few published so I can get my name out there to some agents and those in the industry.
Dune by Frank Herbert
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Dune is simply one of the greatest science fiction books ever written. At its most basic foundations, the story follows the spiritual, physical, and mental growth of the hero, Paul. You could see it as a parable for growing into adulthood, but that might doscount the deliciousness of multifaceted plot.
The struggle of the characters is almost Shakespearean. The hero is betrayed, his father killed, and his people displaced or destroyed as he barely escapes death on multiple occasions. Paul then finds his place in a covert society while transcending himself. He finally returns with such vengeance, the end result is far beyond most vengeful people could imagine.
The language can take some time to understand. However, it isn’t as complicated as some people find. I didn’t have any trouble.
If you’re a fan of Science Fiction, Dune is a must-read!
Also, please discount the David Lynch Dune movie. It is so bad, I can’t even comment on just how bad it is and do it proper justice. I hope someday a talented director will actually take this masterpiece of a book and do it correctly.
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The Eye of the World by Robert Jordan
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
The Wheel of Time is one of the more popular fantasy series. It is well written, full of action and intrigue, and a necessary read for the fantasy afficionado.
The main criticism I have is the overt similarities to the Lord of the Rings. I know Tolkien changed the way fantasy is written. His world building is incomparable. You could argue that no good fantasy author can succeed without using his model to some degree. However, authors really need to make a serious effort to go their own path.
Robert Jordan even admitted the village depicted in the beginning of the book was modeled after Tolkien’s Shire. I didn’t know this until after finishing the book but did pick up on the similarities myself. Unfortunately that’s not where it ends. The character Lan is very similar to that of Tolkien’s Aragorn. Perrin is similar in name and character to Peregrin Took. The blight is similar to Mordor. Even the “Eye of the World” is almost a complete ripoff of the “Eye of Sauron.” There are too many similarities to mention.
The other criticism is the book is too wordy and much too long. These days authors are trained to stick to the plot, be as brief as possible, and limit descriptions. Jordan ignores all these rules. You could easily take a hundred pages or more out of this book and not lose an ounce of effectiveness.
So why did I depart so much from my first paragraph? Look, it’s an entertaining book. The more I read the more I grew attached to the characters and the story. The ending was confusing but the journey was interesting. I’m not sure if I’ll read more of the books in the series but overall I enjoyed this one.
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