Apparently if you’re a knitter, like my wife, then the thing to say when you’re describing current projects is to say you’ve got them “on the needles”. When I ask my wife what knitting projects she’s working on, she’ll say, for example, “Oh, I’ve got a pair of socks and an afghan on the needles right now.” It’s a thing you say if you’re a knitter.
But what’s the equivalent phrase if you’re a writer? I’m going to suggest “on the platen”. It’s a typing thing. You remember typewriters, right? They were like word processors and printers, all combined into one device. They were pretty awesome.
So here’s what I’ve got on the platen right now:
- “The X of Doom”, my short story about the Pirate Queen, was not finished by the end of January as I’d originally planned. On the other hand I’ve got a solid concept — part pirates, part Labyrinth — and strong characters. I just need to tighten the outline and get the writing started. I’m hoping to get the first draft written in the next two weeks. Also it’s getting more complicated the more I outline it, and it may end up being a novella rather than a short story. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing but may complicate longer term plans for the story.
- Also: Code Monkey!. This was my NaNoWriMo project for 2009, and I’ve been slowly but surely revising it for public consumption. I had fun writing it back then and the people who’ve read it seem to have enjoyed it. I’ve revised part one, but revisions for part two are going slowly. But getting the revisions done by March 8 is my goal.
- And: Iron Horse Apocalypse. This is my “doomsday-on-a-train” novel, which I wrote for NaNoWriMo in 2008. Another novel that I had a blast writing, and one that I think is fun to read. It’s chock full of anachronisms and cliches, but that’s okay with me. I have plans to self publish this one over the summer, which means it’s in revision as well.
- Aaaaaand finally: The Winds of Patwin County. This is more of a collection of intertwined short stories than a novel. Some of the stories (like “Who Remembers Molly?”) have already been published; most have not (and “The X of Doom” will be one of these stories). I’ve been working on the “Patwin County” mythos for decades, and it fiendishly extends into just about everything I write; I even created a large family tree reflecting all the characters in the various stories, and I have it on my wall in my office. I’m not sure what the ultimate fate of The Winds of Patwin County will be. But it will be published. Oh yes it will.
And that’s it. For now. Here’s hoping that putting these goals online will make me somewhat accountable.