Blackthorne is done. I'll tell you a secret: I've been working on that novel for fifteen years, and while I'd prefer it if I had one last pass over the thing to make it perfect...well, that isn't going to happen. Sometimes it's time for the thing to be done. So, off it goes. Damn, it's been a long time coming. There's a lot of good stuff in there, and I hope you like it, dear reader. I sincerely do.
I've also started a couple of short stories and have the opening for the next novel too. I used to twitch in place until the latest novel came out. It was like some part of me felt I had to be told that I was good enough to continue writing. That's just stupid. If you want to be a professional writer, don't get in your own way like that. Please. There are plenty of people out there who are more than willing to perform the service of halting your progress for you. Don't do the haters' job. Just don't.
Five novels into my career--going on six, and there's one thing I've learned. Every. Novel. Is. Different. Eventually, I'm hoping to get faster, but getting better is more important to me than speed. So, that. There are many things I've learned this time. There are so many more that I need to learn. That's a good thing. This time, I learned a great deal about sticking a landing. I'm pretty good at beginnings. I know what makes them grippy. Endings? Good endings are tricky. Now, I feel they're less difficult to pull off. (Thank goodness.) I'm just about ready to tackle the concept of a great middle. Almost. Middles are where I end up muddling around. They're what slow me down. So, this is something I've been kind of dreading. At the same time, I think once I get a good handle on it, I'll have enormously improved my skills as a storyteller. Yeah, yeah. This wouldn't be a problem if I only outlined. I do tend to go at writing like it's a block of marble and I spend my time taking away the stone that isn't the novel until I have the novel. It's how my story-brain works, but it's good to have other tools in your toolbox, you know? You have to be flexible. And the only way to do that is stock up on your writing skills. You never know what you might need to know.
Anyway, I'm off to write some more and watch TV. I'm behind on The Expanse and Madam Secretary.
 And I've done that to a certain extent, but it doesn't cure the problem because my subconscious prefers to wander off the map. Writers have to be okay with that. Sometimes the story is what the story wants to be. All the outlines in the world won't change that.
is a Science Fiction and Fantasy author living in Texas.