With 19 hours to spare, I finished the last of my six short stories for the Clarion Write-a-thon. Woof, what a slog.

I had eight donors total. Thank you, all you lovely people! I’ll be drawing a name out of a hat (or, more likely, using an RNG) to pick who will be the lucky winner of naming a character in one of my steampunk stories. Expect that in a day or two. I just don’t even have the brainpower necessary to write names on bits of paper right now, I swear.

If you’d like to read an excerpt from this last story, you can check the blog for my write-a-thon team.

This has definitely been a learning experience for me.

Total, I wrote around 35,000 words over six weeks. Last year, I wrote 99,000 words over those same six weeks. And let me tell you, for all that’s over twice as much, those 99K words were a hell of a lot easier.

I have a rough time with short stories. I did a lot of staring at blank pages and trying to figure out what the hell I was doing. It’s way harder than just having a big plot and writing until it’s done. Of course, one of the mistakes I made this time around is that I didn’t have six stories planned out. I didn’t even have base ideas for them. Of the stories, two were planned in advance. Generating the other four ideas quickly and under pressure was a lot rougher than I expected it to be.

My brain is toast. I’m definitely short-storied out for a while, at least for new writing. Two of the stories I think I can submit for open calls that are due on August 31, so I’ll be doing some editing between now and then. The rest can percolate a while longer.

I still have plenty of work that needs doing. I owe my patient editor the first round from Murder on the Titania. I want to get this damn novel draft finished some time soon. I need to start outlining the next Captain Ramos story, since the first draft of that will be due by the end of the year and once I get back to school my writing time is going to be very limited.

I also came up with an idea that I’ve fallen in love with, just randomly as I was leaving work today. I’m letting it percolate, and we’ll see if I’m still in love with it when I can start working on something new that’s long. Because this feels big. But the working title for this project is The Bridge Over the Graveyard of Whales. I know, I know, my title fail. Right now my excuse is that my brain is just juiced. I’ll come up with a different excuse tomorrow.

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