The end, the beginning, and the half-way point

The first day of summer – with the longest period of daylight – was the (northern hemisphere’s) summer solstice, just the other day, and the end of June – halfway through the calendar year – is just around the corner. But today is June 25, exactly 6 months before (and after) Christmas! What?!?


No, I’m not in a panic – I don’t shop early for the holidays anymore, and I never used to, this early. I do (and already have, for this year) order a family Christmas ornament, and write design get a great idea for come up with a “custom” invitation to our annual holiday bash very early, say, in January (but this year, it wasn’t until April…) for the following year’s party.

But I do marvel at how time has gone by, so fast, since December 25. Remember that ice and snow, Atlanta? (and all of you, up north?)

Luckily, that’s long gone. It’s warm, it’s humid, and often downright hot; it’s thunderstorm weather here in Georgia. And I know it isn’t really, but to me, today is kind of the half-way point of the year.

So it’s kind of fitting that yesterday, I finished one big project, and today, I’m starting another one. Wait – I’ve already started the new one – at least, I got some words down on a page  (about 3500 words, that is). For now, it’s called Book 4. But [I’ll say] I’m really starting it today, because it’s now number one on my agenda: if I don’t do it, it won’t happen. I’m on the beginning right now: Chapter One is done (though it needs revisiting) and Chapter Two is underway. (I’ve also got the end of the story mapped out.)

The project I just finished is the revision of ALL THE ABOVE, the book I’ve been working on for more than a year, after my editor Laura Ownbey’s overview edit*. The book won’t be 100% ready for release until after the line edit** (and my subsequent changes), but it still feels like the end – even if it isn’t, exactly.

As the days get shorter, I’ll get the i’s dotted and the t’s crossed on ALL THE ABOVE (and fix the transitions, flow, dialogue, and all that other stuff – see below) – the fine-tuning. During the next 6 months, I’ll also be working with my (other) editor, Anh Schluep, at Thomas & Mercer to prepare UNDERWATER for rerelease this fall.

So, I’ve got a lot to do before December 25, which, I’m guessing, will be here before I know it…

IMG-20111230-00026 - Version 2

Above: The poinsettia tree at the Atlanta Botanical Garden Christmas Exhibit a few years ago

* an analysis of plot points, characterization, pacing, overall flow, and similar broad issues
** grammar and punctuation issues, problems with flow, stiff dialogue, formatting problems, rough transitions, and anything else that sticks out… from the layout of furniture in a room changing to a misplaced apostrophe

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