Keep Writing Through and Over Those Walls of Procrastination

procrastination-tree-through-wall-the-zelkova-sphere-time-travel-4085Nope, it’s not an April fools’ joke. I really am out on the Camp Nanowrimo trail – 30 days of writing to a self-selected target count of approx. 25,000 words. That’s the goal for my first science fiction story, The Zelkova Sphere, making it a novella length adventure.

Readers of this blog might recall that I had a number of earlier unsuccessful flirtations with the main Nanowrimo event that happens each November. I am not going to go over old ground here since that is counter-productive and is anyway available in the archives for diehards interested in reliving the gory details.

Instead, I’ve signed up as the host of my own virtual cabin on the camp Nanowrimo site and a number of other intrepid writers are now bunking there too. We’ll see how things go but I am optimistic that I will hit my word count goal this time. 25,000 is much more achievable than 40,000 and with an Amazon pre-order date of 27th May to meet (else I loose pre-order privileges for a year), I am motivated to crack on with the project.

Along the way I will be aiming for a daily word count of about 1,000 words or better but I am mindful that real life can and does get in the way; so it’s best to get off to a good start this weekend (I’m writing this post Saturday lunchtime) and then it will be ‘all systems go’ on the book.

Readers can pre-order ‘The Zelkova Sphere‘ on Apple’s iBooks store or on the Amazon Kindle store – just click on the links in the side bar. You might be thinking that many eBooks priced at just 99 cents have come in for some stick because of a perceived identification between low price and a poor reading experience. I understand that concern and plan to raise my prices at some stage after publication. My pricing plan right now is based on two key facts:

  1. I am an unknown SF writer.
  2. There will be two further eBooks (probably novella length) in this time travel story.

I have not planned them as a typical 1-2-3 series of books, contrary to what the book marketing gurus recommend. Therefore, depending on how they turn out (lengthwise) it might be appropriate to keep them as loss-leaders for a newbie author like me and bundle the three finished eBooks into a digital boxed set. Decisions, decisions. It’s more important for me to write and finish and repeat than to get lost in marketing tumbleweeds.

By the way, if you are interested in beta reading ‘The Zelkova Sphere‘, sign up to my email list and I’ll send you further information. I am interested in beta readers of science fiction (especially of time travel, but it’s not a ‘drop dead’ requirement haha!) who can give accurate and informed feedback on my work.

Other news: I am reading lots more science fiction than last year and I’ve found it great fun to escape into some very clever story worlds. I just finished ‘The Man who Folded Himself‘ by David Gerrold – one wild ride of imagination. Still thinking about the implications of all that ‘self-love’ and will probably give it another read through to make sure I got the story right!

Up next on the list is ‘The Best Time Travel Stories of the 20th Century‘, edited by Harry Turtledove and Martin H. Greenberg. I got the paperback version and anticipate reading some great stories.

Time travel stories are many and varied but, in my experience, there seem to be a minority that attempt to keep the story within the limits of current scientific understanding at the time of writing. Of course, you can maybe see why that is. Showing the possibility of time travel is not something easily demonstrated or tested experimentally. And for some writers the time travel aspect is just a useful way to get the characters into some mind bending paradoxes.

‘The Zelkova Sphere’ has a grain of scientific possibility to it but whether this will hamper or turbocharge the story remains to be discovered. First I gotta write the damned thing.

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About the Author

Author: Mark McClure is a science fiction author who lives in Tokyo, Japan.

Current project: A three-book series of novels involving time travel, parallel worlds and emerging technologies. All being well, these will be published in the 2018 timeline. Visit my blog for updates: My Books


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The Zelkova Sphere
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