Reviews Coming Up

I got a few more review copies in this week.  The prize of the bunch is a copy of “The Black Prism” by Brent Weeks, but I’m also excited about reading “Fungus of the Heart” by Jeremy C. Shipp (Fungus isn’t even listed on Amazon yet!).  Of course, I have to finish the book I’m reading right now first!

I’ve also got a few non-fiction books that I’ll be reviewing over the next few weeks.  Several of them are books from the “skinny on” series.  Pretty good books, and they are shorter than most (about 100 pages), so I should be able to crank through them rather quickly.

Plenty to read around here.  It never seems like I make a dent into my “to be read” pile.  Not that I’m complaining about having too many books to read.  That’s not a condition that truly exists outside of my wife’s mind. 😉

Couple of Quick Notes

If your interested, I wrote a book review for a book called “Why are we so clueless about the stock market” over on my personal finance blog, Beating Broke.  I don’t read a whole lot of non-fiction, but I occasionally get a review copy in and do reviews then.  Also, if you’re at all interested in personal finance, you might find a thing or two to read.

Second note.  I don’t think I mentioned it here, but John Scalzi was holding a short story contest of sorts.  The deadline was June 30, 2010, so if you hadn’t heard about it before now, you’ve missed it entirely.  I did manage (with only about 5 minutes to spare) to get my entry in.  I don’t think it’s my best work, and it probably could have used a bit more editing, but it is what it is  and there’s no do-overs now.  They aren’t asking for exclusivity, so I’ve been thinking about posting my entry here.  Not sure yet, anyone have any thoughts on that? The winner, besides getting some nice prizes, also gets their story printed in a short chapbook of other authors stories.  All of the stories will be based on the same prompt (which you can see at the contest post linked above), so it should be interesting to see how others took the plot and such.

I took the route of a fanfic parody of sorts.  Threw in some stuff that I thought was funny anyways.  They haven’t really announced a end date other than to note that they plan on publishing the chapbook sometime in late summer or early autumn.  So, maybe late July or early August?  Either way, it was fun to write, and I hope I win.

That’s it for now.  I’m headed off to vacation on a nice quite beach somewhere in Minnesota next week, so if the weather turns sour, I might get some extra reading in.  Otherwise, I’m sure the kids won’t let out of the water long enough to do any reading.  Sun and fun!

Echo, Echo, Echo

My, my.  It’s awfully quiet over here.  I see some cobwebs in the corner and there’s a layer of dust on the shelves.

I haven’t deserted you, reader.

I’ve just been awfully busy, lately.

But, I do have a great book that I’m reading that I will have a review on sometime next week.  It’s Under Heaven by Guy Gavriel Kay and it’s a good one.  It’s a lot of book, but I’ve only got about 40 pages left and then it’s off to write a review.

Until then…

Looking Into 2010

Once upon a time, I used to do a yearly recap of the ending year accompanied by a predictions/goals list for the upcoming year.  I quit that at least a year ago.  It no longer seemed relevant.  Or, I just got lazy and didn’t want to put the effort into it.  Both are, most likely, equally responsible.  But, with the newness of this blog, I feel that I should revamp at least part of that tradition.  So, here’s my list of writing/reading goals for the year 2010.

In no particular order.

I would like to read more.  It’s hard to find the time to read, but I think I can squeeze a bit more in.  My goodreads list shows a total of 26 books read in 2009.  That’s one every other week.  Rock on.  There are even a few non-fiction books in the mix which always slows me down some.  I’m reading one now and it’s taking a bit longer than most fiction books.  I also foresee reading Dome by Stephen King sometime in 2010 and so a 1000+ page book is likely to slow me down a bit as well.  As much as I’d like to reach the 52 book mark like Jake did, I just don’t see it as being a possibility.  But, I’d like to read somewhere around 30-35.

I’d like to write more.  That seems like a weak goal until you consider that 2009 was the first year that I participated and won NaNoWriMo.  I wrote more in November 2009 than I have my entire life.  Writing more in 2010 then becomes a pretty awesome goal.  I’d like to see that number doubled, at least.  So, 100k words is the set goal of the moment.  That doesn’t count blog posts or articles, only fiction work.

This next goal will help with the last.  I’ll finish my NaNo novel.  I’ve added only about 1500 words since the end of November, and really need to get back on the horse. Doing so should add about 30k words towards the year long goal.  And maybe a NaNo novel again should get me very close to that 100k goal.  It’s not what I would consider professional writer numbers, but I’ve still got a full time job and two kids, so we’ll start low and work our way towards that.

That’s it.  I could get all detailed, but I always think that a few precise goals is much better than a bunch of less precise non-goals that are more resolutions.  If you can’t measure it, it’s horribly easy to let slide.  For instance, if I said that I wanted to write better in 2010, who gets to judge that?  Me.  So, even if I feel that I haven’t improved all that much, I certainly can tell myself that I did.  Where’s the fun in that?

What about you?  What are your 2010 writing goals?

Welcome to Novelnaut

I’d say “take a look around”, but there isn’t much to see yet.  I just moved in, so I’m still working on sprucing up the place.  But, hopefully soon, I’ll have some stuff hanging on the walls and some stuff for you to read as well.

My goal for this site is to be my writers blog.  A blog where I can ponder the life of a writer, review the books that I read, and maybe learn a thing or two about the writing, editing, and publishing worlds.  I was inspired by my friend Jake and what he’s been doing at his new baby, Epic Plains.  He has much grander plans for Epic Plains than I do for Novelnaut, but I think they will coordinate well.

With all that said, I’ve got the first book review coming up, and, since we’re still so close to the end of November, a nice post about NaNoWriMo 2009.  Grab the RSS feed on the left hand side, add it to your favorite RSS reader and that content will come right to you!