Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Tag's Mid Year Update

Its somehow July, so this week I am going to give you a mid-year update to give you some idea what is happening and how my year is progressing. Overall, it’s been a good year. My June Word Count tally was 350k+ with almost 500 pages edited.

I have brought a half acre of land in January and now I have also brought a house to go on my land. By the end of the year, I will have a completed house! Which real human beings can live in! Which is pretty exciting for me, as it has long been an important goal and milestone in my life.

However, this blog is mostly about writing, so without further ado:


I am thrilled to announce I am speaking at Genrecon this year. On the Friday, I will be doing a one hour session on getting higher word counts and time management. If you are coming to genrecon, I highly recommend you come along and listen, since all I ever hear is how people want more time management/higher word count advice and apparently writing you all a book on the subject wasn’t enough. Plus, you get to ask me questions. Like exactly how many souls it took to buy my wordcounts. No one likes being ripped off by immortal tricksters.


This is my third year as an Aurealis judge. This year I am judging horror short stories. I didn’t enjoy novels last year as much as I enjoy shorts. Since 90% of the fiction I read is horror shorts and I find it virtually impossible to look away from creepy pastas and over short/creepy stories, I think horror shorts is where I am happiest.

We were given official access to the judging documents today, so I am looking forward to the slow deluge of stories as the year progresses. Everyone should still be prepared for my inevitable sleep deprived break-down in January though. It’s part of my process, okay?!


I’m attending RWA this year, not in any professional capacity, but I am still pretty excited about the event. The organising committee are doing a fantastic job and it looks like a really fantastic program. I’m super stoked and really looking forward to pitching to editors during the conference. If you haven’t got your tickets yet, what are you waiting for?

Online Classes:

As always, I am constantly seeking to learn more about the craft of writing. I’ve already attended a number of day-long classes, particularly those offered by the Morteon Bay Library, as they’re fantastic and free. If you aren’t already following their program, look it up and get involved.

I am also signed up for several QWC workshops and they are always fantastic value for money.

I stretched the budget this year and also signed up for an online fantasy writing workshop through the Victoria Writer’s Centre with CS Pacat. It runs for six months, but and I have already learned a lot. It was a pricy course, but well worth the cost. Pacat has a rather unique way of breaking down scenes and writing techniques and if you have a chance to attend one of her workshops, I highly recommend it.

Vision and retreat:

I am still the vice president of Vision Writers, which meant, of course, that it was my job to organise the Vision Writer’s Retreat again this year, with lots of help from my wonderful co-author Meghann Laverick. This year we are up on the sunshine coast hinterland again and looking forward to a very cold retreat, during which I intend to wear nothing but my Blastoise onsie.

Once again, it is a fantastic group of people attending and I am looking forward to lots of eating and lots of pretending to write.

The Vision Writer’s group as a whole is still an excellent community for feedback and support if you write speculative fiction (sci fi, fantasy, urban fantasy, horror, etc) in the Brisbane region. Meetings are the first Sunday of every month and you can get more info on the website.

Current projects:

Anyone who knows me well is aware my primary goal in life is biting off more than I can chew, then becoming paralyzed with horror when I can’t do the work of fifty people at once.

I have experienced little to no personal growth in this area.

Honestly first drafts of novels get completed and chucked into the ‘to be edited’ pile so fast it’s not worth mentioning them at this stage. Meg and I completed about fifteen first drafts last year and this year is on track to be able the same. 1-2 novels a month is our norm and that has not changed.

Editing, however, is a much slower process.

Currently Meg is editing Bite the Ice, our queer sports romance which will be sold under our romance pseudonyms. And I am editing White Skies, our queer fantasy forced marriage, which will also be sold under our romance pseudonyms.

I am also editing another project, which is still under wraps at this stage, but hopefully I will be able to give some news about soon.

It is also time for the two-yearly Arqum edit/re draft. Which is now a tradition going back sixteen years. Maybe this is the final round. Maybe, just maybe, it’s time to finish this thing and call it done. OR MAYBE NOT.

If you want to connect with me, look for me on FACEBOOK and TWITTER.

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