As the year comes close to an end, I feel like I’m finally regaining my footing. I never expected that the move across the States that happened back in March would affect me so much and for so long, but it also came with a few other changes in my life, including starting to work more intensively as a freelancer. So the process of “getting back to the routine” was constantly disrupted, and whenever I felt like I was just getting there, something else came up. I’m still behind a few things, and I have little hope to catch up, but I’m doing my best moving forward.
The month started as a natural continuation of my previous struggles, with very little written. But as days went by, I finally found my motivation and determination to write more and focus on the things that needed finishing. I made significant progress on Myth-touched, book 2 in my contemporary fantasy series set in Ireland, finally finding solutions to the issues that made me put that story aside months ago. It still requires some more work before I can call the first draft done, but I’m positive I can make it happen by the end of the year.
Other than that, I’ve been enjoying working on a new project that at the moment I consider being written for my own entertainment. I’m unsure yet, whether it’ll turn into something more serious.
In the end, I still had words missing at the end of the month, having written only little over 25,000 of them, but for the first time in months I actually felt like I’m back on track and getting somewhere. It’s a nice feeling. On top of that, I have written every single day for 10 months now.
Short story publication
My Scourges, Spells, and Serenades being published in the third issue of StoryHack magazine was the news I’ve been sitting on since the beginning of the year. This sword and sorcery short tells yet another tale of two of my favorite characters, arcanist Kamira and mage killer Veelk, so I was excited to be able to share it with others.
It’s a second short story published this year, and it reminds me that even though writing and publishing is a slow process, things eventually happen every now and then.
Quite unexpectedly, encouraged by my acquaintance, I took part in Inktober. It’s a challenge for artists, inviting them to draw and post daily pictures. As I don’t really consider myself an artist (though maybe I should?), and I knew my focus would be on words, not images, I picked a simple theme for myself – my favorite bugs, dragonflies. I felt that doing so, along with following the official daily prompts, would give me enough of quick inspiration to complete the challenge without too much time consumed.
In the end, I had immense fun with them, and the response to my dragonflies was stunning. When the month ended, everyone wanted more of them, and I regretted I wouldn’t be able to keep up with daily drawings. But maybe, in the future, I’ll be able to post a few new ones each month.
After a month of family visits, October was pleasantly quiet. I enjoyed some video games and watching series with Inq. We had a quick unexpected trip to Norfolk, and arriving there at the rush hour left a very bad impression of the town.
We didn’t do much for Halloween. I still kept to my personal tradition and carved a pumpkin. It wasn’t as elaborate as I had last year, because we only got a small pumpkin, but when I came up with the idea of making it into a cat, I couldn’t resist it. Maybe next year I’ll try something more ambitious again. The cat, of course, was promptly turned into a delicious pumpkin soup…
How about you? Was October kind to you?
Joanna Maciejewska is a fantasy and science fiction author who enjoys all things SFF: books, movies, and video games.
Her short stories appeared in magazines and anthologies in Polish and in English.
Her epic fantasy adventure series, starting with By the Pact, is available in ebook and paperback at all major retailers.