Oh, I’m just reading and Complaining a bit here

Hello. Once more it’s me. That guy you sometimes see Mondays with a new blog. That’s right. So here we go.

Well, here’s the bad news. Remember last week when I said the co-author was sick? Yeah, that continues. They think they’ll be able to do some edits this evening, but unfortunately we weren’t able to progress from where we were the last time I talked about this. As such, the book remains the same, but we were a little ahead of schedule anyway, so we’re still on track.

So, what else have I been up to? Well, I’ve read. Not too unusual, but I did find another author to peruse. Now I can’t tell if it’s because I’ve been editing and such for quite a bit, or if they really have issues, but this new authors books are riddled with formatting issues. Missing quotation marks, and words. Incorrect words litter the books, and I find it distracting. The other thing, which I’m not entirely sure is an issue, is the giant paragraphs explaining fights. I’ve really no idea what’s going on half the time, and generally I just scan through it and just try to find when such things end. I don’t find it exciting so much as frustrating.

Also, in the first book in the current series I’m reading the author forgot to describe the main character at all, at least physically. We don’t know until the second or third book he’s a redhead, let alone how fit or unfit he is. Really somewhat of a disappointment, but luckily the books themselves are enjoyable otherwise.

If I recall correctly, it’s been years, my first book was a little light on that aspect as well. Though I had a reason to be a bit vague on the protagonists description. You’ll know what I mean if you read Deathship. However here it doesn’t appear to be for any reason other than forgetfulness.

I hope this isn’t taken as huge criticism. I know how difficult it is to write a book. But now I’m getting a little worried someone will take a look at the book I’m editing now and find all sorts of errors. Though I’d like to think we’re doing a good job stomping out any mistakes. Heh, with the number of times I’ve read this book I’d hope so. And it shows, at least when editing side-by-side with the co-author. Mostly we’re changing things, when we do, based upon word selection and less on errors.

I’m also continuing to write another book. It’s going well, and inspiration just keeps coming. There were a few things I thought of the other day, and I wrote those down. However I have to stop myself from going too far with a joke that I had in mind. While it made me laugh, I’m not sure it fits the mood. Though I didn’t cut it out completely. I chuckled quite a bit today as I wrote the little scene, so there’s that.

So yeah, that’s basically it. I’m reading. I’m writing. No arithmetic as such, though I did do a little research on the conversion rate of currency. When you’re talking copper, silver, and gold, you gotta at least have some sort of idea what you’re doing, otherwise it’s just a bunch of nonsense. Of course, now you might suspect this next book is fantasy, and you’d be right. So there’s that little hint, or such, for you.

Alright, it’s time for me to go. As always, I hope you have a great week.

TTFN

What I’ve published

Walk On

Walk On Cover

click here for a link to the book

Outsider Trilogy

Outsiders-Book-Cover-RGB-web-safe

Click here for a link to the book

Poetry

poems_front2

Link to my author page on Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/Steven-Oaks/e/B00MEGSEZ6

Link to the Deathship book in the CreateSpace store – https://www.createspace.com/5023771

Or you can help me out on Patreon. Again, thank you. https://www.patreon.com/StevenOaks

Update: The book is 55% edited. And I’m 23% into the new novel’s first draft.

Steven Oaks

Follow me on the things below.

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Perfection, nah.

Howdy folks. I’m back, as per usual, and I’m gonna be writing a blog post, imagine that.

So what have I been up to? Well, writing of course. As often is the case I struggled with sleep, though I attempted many things that have worked in the past. But in this restlessness I began thinking about my story. I lingered for several hours in bed, pondering and pondering, and finally came up with an idea that would fill in a section that I had left for later. And today I wrote what I had conceived. Yay for me.

Unfortunately I didn’t do my writing as I thought of it, as I struggled a bit with the wording and world building unlike I did while lying in bed. Sigh, such is the case when idea’s come to you, and you try to remember them instead of utilizing inspiration when it strikes you. However, my excuse is I was actually trying to sleep, and such rest is hard to come by for me.

As for the other book, the one being edited for release this year, we took a bit of a hit in its production. Sadly the co-author was sick, and being the good person I am(heh) I didn’t feel I should push them to edit while they coughed their lungs out. Honestly though, who would force someone to work when they’re sick? Oh yeah, most places who employ people. Of course I do the same to myself when it comes to most things, though when my thoughts are clouded I tend to not write… a fault perhaps on my part as who can say what strange and unusual things I’d write while under the influence of influenza? (heh)

Luckily we got to some editing earlier in the week, so we aren’t too far behind. I can see this book easily coming out in the next few months, but I won’t set it in stone. The cover still needs to be completed even if we get the editing done. And I should probably look over my afterword/author’s note again. Things may have changed, and I know me, I tend to get excited and write things down and think they’re fine even if they aren’t if I don’t review them several times.

You can see that in my blog posts here, several mistakes that I generally don’t fix because either I don’t have time, or because I think it’s a more honest look into how a writer really does need to go back and edit no matter how right they think they got it the first time. Remember that fellow writers, while if it isn’t broke don’t fix it, but it’s always going to be a little defective the first time. And don’t be afraid of change, even if it makes you go through the whole story again fixing little things. Don’t be satisfied with it being fine, make it good. Perfection on the other hand will allude you, but you can still try, just don’t go crazy chasing it.

Some will tell you, if it takes years make sure everything is perfect, but I won’t. I’ll tell you to make it readable, and wipe out any mistakes you can, but hand it off to someone else eventually. They’ll find things you wont, and after that you can make some changes to fix it, then you can be done. Well, make those changes, hand it back, then if it gets the all clear, take a look again, then you can be done.

You can, if you want, spend your whole life attempting the impossible thing of writing the perfect story, but I wouldn’t recommend it. Unless it’s the only story you ever want to write, and on your death bed you can reliably hand it off to someone to publish. Because nothing is perfect. There is no author that will tell you that they are completely satisfied with what they write. If I didn’t force myself onwards I’d still be on my first book. Maybe it’d be better by this time, but I wouldn’t have grown as much as I have at working on other stories.

Still, don’t just think the first thing you write is good enough. You have to find the right balance. Either give yourself a time limit, or a number of times you go through your book editing. That’s a little more difficult when you have a co-author, as what either of you consider reasonable may differ. But either way, find that balance.

Anyhoo, I’m gonna get outta your hair, and let you all get back to living your life. I’ll see ya next week, have a good one.

TTFN

What I’ve published

Walk On

Walk On Cover

click here for a link to the book

Outsider Trilogy

Outsiders-Book-Cover-RGB-web-safe

Click here for a link to the book

Poetry

poems_front2

Link to my author page on Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/Steven-Oaks/e/B00MEGSEZ6

Link to the Deathship book in the CreateSpace store – https://www.createspace.com/5023771

Or you can help me out on Patreon. Again, thank you. https://www.patreon.com/StevenOaks

Update: The book is 55% edited. And I’m 21% into the new novel’s first draft.

Steven Oaks

Follow me on the things below.

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Writing, but Unsure

Hello all. I have returned for yet another weekly post for the blog.

So what’s been going on with you? Me? Well the edits are continuing smoothly. We are halfway through, and we’ve not run into any show stopping problems. Though we did find a little continuity error, but it was easily fixed with an additional sentence and a bit of restructuring. I guess I wasn’t reading as carefully as I thought when I was editing by myself. I suppose that’s down to me mostly looking for grammatical and formating errors.

As to my next book, well I keep having doubts. They all go away when I read what I wrote in previous writing sessions, so there’s that. However, I wind up feeling unsure if I’m writing the correct story. You see, I’m making a bit of an origin story for a new character that I’ve been interested in writing. I have them already fully formed in my head, but now I’m trying to tell the tale of how they got that way, instead of focusing on what I plan for them in a future book.

My brain keeps going back to a series written by Will Wight, and how they intertwined an origin story with what was currently happening. Every other chapter bouncing back and forth. Now I’ve thought of doing this, and I think it would be fascinating, however I keep going back and writing more of this origin story.

If done correctly, this chronological juggling can be quite good and entertaining, and I’d like to try my hand at it one day, but I’m not completely sold on it for this book yet. Who knows, maybe when I’m around half-way through writing I’ll see that I’m going to be short, and start down that path. But currently, since things keep going so smoothly I’ll probably wait. If I get to that point, then I’ll go back and see about filling the book in with another story.

Complicated I know, but I know myself. I tend to write an entire story a bit shorter than my planned word limit. I don’t just want to pad things out with things that don’t contribute to the story. However, I feel I’ve learned quite a bit about writing in my team-up with the co-author, and even now, with only 19K words, I can see that advancement in the way I write.

Since I’m so boring, there’s really nothing else to speak of. I watched a few things, and I’ve read a few things, but unless you have as well I’m not sure it’s even worth talking about. It’s funny how much YouTube I watch about random subjects, at times for research, other times just because I find things amusing.

Since I’m still working with the co-author on this book, I get the chance to discuss what they are writing next. So there’s that. I’d like to think I’m helping out, even if I’ve yet to read what they’re writing, as I’m rather focused on my own book and finishing our edits before we publish our collaboration. But each time we talk, I get an infusion of excitement for writing. I’m glad I helped encourage them, and they encourage me. It’s nice to have someone there that understands the hardships faced by writing.

Luckily I haven’t run into writers block, as I generally force myself to write. That seems to take care of any issues, even if there are times when I stare at the screen blankly for ages. If I just think of my characters as people, I usually am able to figure out what someone like them would do, and another sentence pops into existence.

And now I’m going to stop rambling, and let you get back to life.

I hope you all have a great week.

TTFN

What I’ve published

Walk On

Walk On Cover

click here for a link to the book

Outsider Trilogy

Outsiders-Book-Cover-RGB-web-safe

Click here for a link to the book

Poetry

poems_front2

Link to my author page on Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/Steven-Oaks/e/B00MEGSEZ6

Link to the Deathship book in the CreateSpace store – https://www.createspace.com/5023771

Or you can help me out on Patreon. Again, thank you. https://www.patreon.com/StevenOaks

Update: The book is 50% edited. And I’m 19% into the new novel’s first draft.

Steven Oaks

Follow me on the things below.

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I Love Ranma 1/2

Hello again. Once more another week has passed, and I’m back to write a blog post.

I was thinking awhile ago about what my favorite anime would be. There are several I enjoy, and like to watch over now and again. However, there is one that for some reason remains at the top for me.

Ranma ½.

This show is my comfy space. I’ve seen the first three seasons at least 10 times over the years, and I still go back to it. Admittedly I’m in love with the dub, and have only watched with subtitles once. All the English voice actors just bring me right back to the first time I watched through it. All snuggled up in my bed, a VCR hooked up to my computer, I spent hours enjoying the antics all the characters got up to. All the while probably downloading something on dial-up, likely a new skin for Winamp.

It was even better when I replaced those old worn-out VHS’s with DVD’s, and now I’m not so worried about wearing them out. Admittedly the series gets a little long-in-the-tooth around the third season, and is probably one reason why I don’t watch more. But I liked the first two movies, they are lots of fun and still have the same voice actors. After awhile they got a new cast to dub the show, and that’s when I stopped. They aren’t the ones I grew to love. They do well enough, but it’s just not the same.

So what’s the show about? Well, it’s a bit strange. A boy named Ranma is a martial artist. His father, Genma Saotome, is always training him, and one day decides they should travel to a sacred training ground in China. Unbeknownst to them the training area is filled with cursed pools of water, even though their tour guide continues to try and warn them. During practice they both fall into different pools, one turning Genma into a panda, and the other turning Ranma into a girl. They learn they can change back to normal if they use hot water, but cold water will activate the curse again.

After all this, they return to Japan to meet up with Genma’s friend, Soun Tendo. They have an agreement, to marry their children so the Tendo school of martial arts continues. Soun offers Akane, his youngest daughter, who is an accomplished martial artist in her own right, to Ranma, but neither are having it. This begins the LONG rivalry and animosity between Ranma and Akane. Along the way other fiancé’s show up, Genma being a horrible man who offered Ranma up at the drop of a hat, and wacky martial arts tournaments are fought. Many others show up,who seem to fancy the boy or have their own reasons to fight him, and the cast grows huge.

Even though there are tons characters, we tend to get to know them very well. Once you get in to it you’ll likely find one that’ll be your favorite, though I tend to like all of them for their quirks. Though admittedly I’m not a huge fan of Ranma himself, nor his so-called fiancé Akane. Both are a little too quick to get angry, and they both are imbued with the trope of not being able to express their true feelings.

So why do I love this show so much? Probably because there is such a large cast. Like I’ve said, they all get explored, and by the time you are through the first season you can easily tell what they’re going to do, like you would with a close friend. You can see hints of growth with all the characters, and I love that. However, the downside for the show is that the two main protagonists, Ranma and Akane, are never allowed much growth. They may start liking each other in an episode, but by the time it’s over they are right back to fighting. It gets frustrating, but I love the others so much I can ignore that. It’s there just to keep the story going, and boy does it go on.

There are 7 seasons, 3 movies, and 12 OVA’s. I’ve seen only the first three seasons, the first two movies, and a smattering of the OVA’s. I’ve enjoyed the majority of what I’ve watched, and maybe one day I’ll go back and finish all of it. But it’ll be hard for me because of the change in voice actors. If I do I’ll probably watch it subtitled. I can stand the Japanese, but it’s such a shame that the original English cast wasn’t able to finish it all.

Anyway, as to writing and editing, the new book grows and the edits are going well.

I hope you all have a great week, and if what I’ve said about Ranma ½ intrigues you, give it a watch.

TTFN

What I’ve published

Walk On

Walk On Cover

click here for a link to the book

Outsider Trilogy

Outsiders-Book-Cover-RGB-web-safe

Click here for a link to the book

Poetry

poems_front2

Link to my author page on Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/Steven-Oaks/e/B00MEGSEZ6

Link to the Deathship book in the CreateSpace store – https://www.createspace.com/5023771

Or you can help me out on Patreon. Again, thank you. https://www.patreon.com/StevenOaks

Update: The book is 37% edited. And I’m 17% into the new novel’s first draft.

Steven Oaks

Follow me on the things below.

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