A Writing Log - v. 7

A BRIEF INTRODUCTION: Hello there! I’m Tess, and you’re about to read an experiment of mine. The experiment is to see how long I can keep a decent log of my writing life, and to see whether that log has any entertainment value. It’s sort of like a captain’s log, but almost definitely less exciting. Hope you enjoy!


Words: 441

This was originally an administrative day, but at the end of it, I decided to push for 200 words, which I obviously overshot.

Actually, this was originally a day for me to Skype with a friend, but she was unavailable, so we skyped on Saturday instead. Mondays are...tough. It’s kind of amazing to me when I’m able to accomplish anything in writing or marketing on Mondays. Oddly, sometimes it’s actually easier to do marketing stuff, even though writing is what I actually enjoy. It’s sort of like Mondays just empty me out, leaving me with nothing left to pour into creativity.

Fortunately, there are a couple of holiday weeks each year that are particularly light on work at my office, and this was one of them. So, 400 words, and a bunch of marketing upkeep and record-keeping.

I was a bit sore from the push-ups I made myself do the previous day, but I got in another workout, this time forcing myself into some ab work at the end. This was another good one, and I think I might be able to credit it for at least some of the success of the overall day.

It’s always kind of a fine balance, isn’t it? If I don’t exercise, I have more immediate energy and time to write. But if I go without for too long, my overall energy seeps out of me like I’ve sprung a leak.


Words: 1281

Tuesday. I did the writing first, before the workout. I’m narrowing in on an upcoming fight scene, and I’m trying to think about it in kind of a new way. Sometimes, I think that fight scenes are the hardest to write--at least, if you want them to be good. In a visual medium, like film, you have all manner of tools at your disposal to visually show chaos and stakes and momentum. But in prose, it can be a much trickier beast. You need to simultaneously get inside what fighting feels like, while also expressing the actual physical events, and preferably creating an up-and-down flow so that it doesn’t just feel like one lone person beating the shit out of a punching bag. And if you’re working in urban fantasy, like me, you also have to keep track of everyone’s various powers and try to use them in an interesting and (relatively) believable way.

It’s a balancing act. Isn’t everything?

Cordelia balances it off.

Cordelia balances it off.


Words: 1279

Happy Independence Day, everybody! Roland Emmerich’s best film by far, if you ignore the fact that it eventually spawned a shit sequel. (I didn’t see it, but it didn’t have Will Smith, so did I need to?)

I didn’t get to most of the admin things I thought I might tackle today, but since I did churn out over 1K words, I’m not gonna beat myself up over it. Finishing book 3 is always priority number 1.

Spent some of the day re-watching the first season of Veronica Mars, which is now available on Hulu, in anticipation of its revival later this month. Ended the day watching fireworks from my rooftop and catching up with friends. And eating chips and dip, of course. If you don’t eat chips on July 4, are you even an American?


Current weekly count: 3,801

Words: 1211

So, I’ve started tracking my progress against a weekly goal of 4,000 words, and I’m also keeping track of my “surplus” words--basically, a count of the words I wrote that went above and beyond the 4K goal. Naturally, there’s a voice in the back of my head telling me that I should just jump the goal to 5K and punish myself excessively for missing it BUT I AM TRYING NOT TO DRIVE MYSELF INSANE. So that voice can shut the fuck up, thanks.

(Side note, nothing makes you reevaluate your curse-word usage like submitting your book to a promo site that asks you super specific questions to figure out a maturity rating for the book. Sex in the book? No. Violence? Some, but not egregious. Cursing? Ah, it’s not that fucking bad...oh, you mean more than two f-bombs gets you a “mature” rating all on its own? Got it, got it, got it. Mature, then.)

Anyway, right now I’ve got a surplus of 1,012 words.


Took a few days off for a very social weekend, complete with a friend visit and a PODCAST RECORDING! I swear to god, we are gonna get this podcast off the ground THIS YEAR.

In all seriousness, I have some reason to hope that we might actually be able to accelerate our recording schedule soon--because we finally both have our own sets of equipment! When we very first started playing around with this idea, we were basically just borrowing equipment. Then a little over a month ago, I ordered all the equipment--but my podcasting partner lives a ways away, so we waited until her next visit to transfer her half of the equipment to her. But it is done now! And we have two fully recorded podcasts under our belt--that I just need to edit, of course. Time to get back on Skillshare and figure out how to use Audacity!

Seriously, tho, thank god for the relative ease of technology today, and thank you in particular to the youtubers (namely: hbomberguy and soulbrotha) who helped me figure out what equipment to use, and to Griffin McElroy for convincing me that I could get started with Audacity. I couldn’t really have imagined myself doing any of this ten years ago, and even though we haven’t quite gotten off the ground yet, it’s incredibly exciting and empowering just to get started with it all.

(Note for clarity: Griffin McElroy did not speak to me specifically. My pod partner and I went to Podcon to figure our stuff out, and he hosted a session on audio editing, which we attended. It both convinced me I could do it, and also that I would probably enjoy listening to his podcasts, and at least one of those things has proven quite true.)

And honestly I just straight-up LOVE having a microphone and an audiobox sitting around my room. It makes me feel like a Real Creator!


No words. Marketing and admin day.

I did kinda want to get some writing done today, but I was also pretty tired from a full weekend and getting back to my office job, AND I really needed to do some of the admin stuff I’d been pushing off, if for no other reason than I need to stop hemorraging money on ads I haven’t properly trimmed/edited.

Also, cleaned up my room post weekend sleepover, and ended up reorganizing a few things and sticking some personal photos up on my wall. I’d been procrastinating doing that on the off-chance that I actually found and bought some nice picture frames for them, but as I was looking down at my somewhat too-crowded dresser, I decided it was just time to go with the thumbtack option. I’ll find some frames eventually, but for now, I just want them up there.


purple sunset.jpg

Hey, thanks for reading! If you’re new here, and you’d like to hear updates on my writing, including these blog posts and my ongoing novel series, The Choronzon Chronicles, then go ahead and click RIGHT HERE to sign up for my email list!

Alternately, if you’ve never heard of The Choronzon Chronicles before, but you think you might check it out, you can find the first book right here: Shadow Summoner.