The first thing you need to know is I’m alive. I know that might not seem particularly relevant, but last week’s fiction was written a couple weeks earlier, and by the time it went live here, I’d already woke up feeling rather poor. When I got in to see a doc on … Thursday? It was in time to find out I’d developed bronchitis, and I should get a chest x-ray, “just in case.” Well, case happened, and I got a phone call that even letting me know I’d also contracted pneumonia. “Just a small spot in the middle of your right lung,” not that I could really tell. Kinda ouchy, actually. Fortunately, good meds are good, and I can breathe again.
On the down side, I haven’t gotten any work done since last Monday, and I’m still exhausted. Also, Mrs. Dave and the little have also managed to get one brand or another of ill, so we’ve temporary changed the sign out front from Caer Pascoe to Plague House, Keep Away. Still, Wee and Wee-er Dave are both back at school, and while Mrs. Dave is banned from work for her respiratory crud (“Don’t bring that in here: the office is too small for that much cough!”), we’re all feeling much better. More hale. Which is nice.
So, I’m alive, and distinctly on the mend, buuuuut … most of my energy is still going toward healing, and I’m short on the brain-juice. But enough about me! Let’s talk about writing. Let me fill you in on the project upon which I’m working. My long term goal is producing a novel a month, roughly. Now, these aren’t going to be the goat-gaggers Amanda mentioned this morning. Instead, I’m planning a couple of genuine pulp series. Why, you ask? Because that seems to be what readers want. Oh, most readers would love if our favorite and most prolific writers were producing full-on, trad-length hardcovers every month, but I don’t know anybody who thinks that’s anything even close to resembling possible. If nothing else, the entire tradpub structure mitigates agin’ such a thing.
Whereas us indies are lithe and nimble enough to make it happen. A short novel a month written to a formula is entirely possible. I, myself, have written 50k words in two weeks in the past. I know Sarah has done similar any number of times, and we both know folks who’ve accomplished something along those line. Now, a 50-60k word short novel in a pulp setting, to a pulp formula is possible, but will it bring in readers? That … honestly, that one is very much a wait and see situation. Still, I figure that’s where craft comes in. If I do my part, I expect readers will show.
Doing my part is that upon which I am working right now. I’m using Lester Dent’s Master Fiction Plot as a starting point, and expanding it for my own use in guiding those short novels. Also, because I’m not sure I can write short stories upon demand, and there’s a better market for short novels in ebooks. My hope (still working on the realization of it) is using a fiction master formula, I’ll be able to plug and play plot specifics and streamline the writing process. Is it going to work? I don’t know, but it’s driving the enthusiasm right now, and that’s awfully handy.
And like I said: that’s a long-term goal. And realistically, I’d like to do four to six of these pulp short novels each year, split between one or two different series (I have two that seem like they’ll fit well) and three or four more traditional (recently traditional) length novels in other series, just to keep those other worlds at bay. I don’t know if this is going to work, but as I said, the idea is exciting, and that enthusiasm drives a lot of actual work. What’s firing your interest?