All The Deadlines

I know I’ve been quiet around these parts lately. A number of deadlines just converged on me suddenly. It’s strangely fortuitous I’m unemployed for the moment or this would be madness. (It’s already kind of madness.)

My drama project is on hold indefinitely, for those who’ve been asking: its main job was to help me re-learn how to have fun writing, because the Novel of Doom left me in a not-great place. That purpose accomplished, it can wait while I focus on other projects. So here’s what I’m up to now:


  1. Editing and Submission Packet Prep

I’m starting to get beta feedback for SHADOWCAST back, and it’s been pretty positive (so far, anyway). Obviously there’s work to do, but the comments are not in the vein of “BURN EVERYTHING IT’S THE ONLY WAY,” so. I’m trying out a complete rewrite of the first chapter for Cascade Writers (First submission deadline: met!), and I’ll tackle the rest of the edits in July. I’d like to have the bulk of the editing, the query letter, and the synopsis done before Cascade, but realistically it’ll probably take much of August, too. I’m also going to take a look at SOUL HARVESTER again now that it’s been out for a while and see if there are any tweaks to make. I want to be actively submitting both of these novels in September.


  1. The Rising Wall

My friend Katie from Sirens is putting together this really cool thing. If you’ve read Mira Grant’s Newsflesh series, you may be aware that the zombie apocalypse has begun. With Seanan McGuire’s blessing, Katie is building the Wall from the series, which means she’s collecting from fans and friends fictional posts from bloggers during the early weeks of the Rising. I haven’t actually read this series of hers, but Katie’s put together an introduction and cheat sheet, so if you want to play too let me know! The deadline for the blogs isn’t flexible, since we have to match timing with what’s canon in the books. This is such a fun idea, and I’m really excited.


  1. Drafting a Short Novel

Here’s the real kicker. Let’s rewind about a year and a half.

I’ve just finished Viable Paradise and my brain is melting out of my ears. I go deep into edits for SOUL HARVESTER for a couple weeks, attend my first World Fantasy, and then think I’m going to do NaNoWriMo when I’m already starting a week late, I have no plan, and my brain is still reeling from the last few weeks. Haha! Oh, past Casey.

So I write about 8k, decide I need to switch from close third to first person, rewrite the whole thing, get up to about 20k, and promptly run out of gas. Hitting a wall at 20-30k is part of my process; I take a break at that point to work on another project for a while and then pound out the rest of the first draft in one go a few months later. For this one, deciding to abandon it was easy. It had been a post-VP experiment and NaNo novel, and I could already tell even if finished it would clock in around 50-60k max. For adult high fantasy, that’s a hard length to sell. I still liked it, but I had no pressing need to finish, so I put it aside.

Back in the present day, some of you may have seen the announcement for the Imprint toward the end of May. They’re going to be publishing short novels, novellas (yes those are two different lengths), and serials. I read this and went, Hey hold on. I had a thing…

I took a look at that partial draft. Some problems, unsurprising given a) it was a NaNo rough draft and b) my brain was in a puddle when I wrote it, but overall I liked what I was seeing. So I looked at the announcement again: they’re taking unsolicited submissions through August.

And I thought, Do I have time to do the thing…? I WILL DO THE THING.

I figure if I can draft and get it cleaned up by the end of June, that gives me all of July to get feedback, and then in August I can edit like the wind and submit before the window closes. I spent a couple days doing some light editing to refamiliarize myself with the story, outlined myself out of the hole, and leapt into the word mines.


SO. Deadlines. A lot of editing. Once I have it under control, I’m picking up the YA mecha space opera novel draft again (where I reached the 30k point and switched projects), because robot battles in space. That’s my light at the end of the tunnel, but I have to make it there first — bearing in mind I have two cons in the next month and also need to acquire a new part-time job.



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