Reading before typing: writing Redemption

Yesterday was a huge and happy milestone for me.  I finished the first draft of Redemption, a Dragon Core Bite Size Pieces story that is definitely a full-length novel, at over 88K words!

I will happily price it as a Bite Size Pieces as that is the commitment I made to my readers.

At this point I will set the story aside for several days and while I’m already onto the next project I will be working on tasks related to its release.

Book cover, back of book description. Excerpt, landing page, etc

I’ll get back to the story in a week or two and refine and edit and pass it along to my beta reader. Then more refine and edit and then release.

As I’ve written previously, this story really took on a life of its own and while that is significant as it provides insight into yet another methodology I employ, it’s unique in another way.

Writer or Reader?  At some point past the 45K mark I realized I wasn’t writing the book so much as reading it.

I kind of disconnected from the fingers going across the keyboard and was reading the words in my mind before they appeared on the screen.  It’s almost like writing from a trance state.  Weird.  And, not typical.

I can count on one hand the number of times this phenomenon has occurred with a book I’m writing.

I have, however, read interviews with authors who have said the Muse was using their hands to get the story down.

I once saw a fiction movie about a writer in which he says that sometimes the story chooses the writer.  I imagine the stories in which I become reader while writing are a version of this concept.

I find it interesting that I have particularly enjoyed the books in which I was simultaneously reader and writer.  

Though I like all my work.

They don’t have a common theme between them that would suggest a certain type of story will induce this state.  

The Paranormal in Action?  I’ve written and spoken about how the Silva Method developed by Jose Silva has been one of the best investments I’ve made, how it continues to pay back on the money, time, and energy spent.  Something I read in Jose’s autobiography may explain this interesting phenomenon to a degree.

Jose developed the method over a period of years and it was initially done with the idea of helping his kids do better in school.  As such, he worked with one of his daughters who was, I believe, junior high age at the time.  

The method was raw at this point.

He talked about how a breakthrough came when his daughter began answering questions he hadn’t yet asked.  She was somehow reading his mind.  It was the beginning of what would entail years of trial and error and continuous refinement but what I got out of it was that the mind was able to anticipate and respond accordingly.  In my Event Horizon app presentation Captain’s Log Part VI: The Fourth Dimension, I talk about how I came to see that the information I got in exercises was a foreshadowing in some cases of what was to come.  When I circle this back to Jose’s experience with his daughter (which was far from isolated as graduates know), I see a possible explanation for the reading of something in my mind before I think or type it.

My theory is that when this happens my mind has attenuated to a certain part of the alpha frequency which is the daydream frequency and a place from which we can create and pulls the information before the tactile response of my physical body has engaged.

I see the words in my mind before I see them on the screen. I’m not thinking them, I’m reading them.

There are subtle nuances in the way it plays out from book to book when this has been the case.  In one of the Metatron’s Army novels, it felt as if I was suddenly remembering something rather than read/writing it for the first time.  That feeling stayed with me for three sequential books though I did not have the sense of reading before typing the way I did in the first of the three, just felt as if I was remembering something somehow familiar.

I am very pleased with how Redemption has turned out and find myself thinking, “Wow, I never would have thought to do that,” which further fuels the paranormal fire.  

As someone whose life is continuously interwoven with such wondrous experiences, I’ve come to appreciate them.

I anticipate Redemption will be ready for release mid-November, 2020.

Stay tuned.

51K And Counting

Happy to say that Redemption, a Dragon Coreshorter” story is at 53K plus and counting.  And counting.  And…

So much for shorter.  This book is writing itself.

I am always amazed by the fact no matter how many stories I write there’s always a new way, a new angle. 

Something new to learn.

Redemption started as a maybe, turned into a this would work, and evolved into a runaway horse.  Fortunately, I managed to lasso the beast and get things under control.  

I think.

Maybe.  Months back and in response to the global chaos I decided to do shorter stories that were filed under the various sci-fi series I have going.  I quickly kicked out three “shorter” Bite Size Pieces that fit within two of the three series.  

All that was left was to do something for the Dragon Core series.

I was surprised by how difficult it was to come up with a story I was happy with for this series which is itself evolving into more than I imagined when I initially conceived it.

I think it’s because for the depth of passion I include I felt doing something short would “short change” author and reader both.

This Would Work.  As I worked on BeaconRainmakerKarma, and Mirror, I mentally chewed on an idea for the Dragon Core series.  

But it felt lukewarm.

Runaway Horse.  Determined I put fingers to keyboard and forged ahead figuring after I got past the initial “oh my god this is going to take forever” I always feel when starting a new novel, it would smooth out.

Little did I know.

This smoothing out process took far longer than I’m used to.

More than once I worried I was forcing it – never good.

I continued to push through.

What choice did I have?  Quit?  After talking about the story for weeks if not months?  Um – no.

suddenly, like the sun bursting through the clouds, the thing took off.  

Twenty thousand words turned into thirty turned into …

Lasso to the Rescue!  Worried I’d lost the thread of intention if not the story, I took time to go back and read what I had from the beginning.

I’d started the book with a significant event in mind but wasn’t sure where in the story the event would take place.  I worried I’d backed myself into a corner and would have to rip out sections to fix it.

To my relief I ‘d written the book in such a way I could decide later on.

I’d written everything so it could go in either direction.

Rather than just moving on ahead, however, I took time to do research.

  • Podcast of Templar Battle Tactics**
  • Article on sleeping habits of horses

Redemption continues to evolve, dragging me along for the ride.

But I’m holding on.

This Dragon Core story which is a full-length novel that will – as promised – be put under the Bite Size Pieces umbrella will be available for purchase Autumn 2020.

I will work on a landing page in the coming weeks.

Stay tuned!

**To listen to the podcast by JStephen Roberts click here.

Deja Vu update and name change

So, happy to announce that Deja Vu, a short story that will introduce readers to the Ghost Games series is in post-production.

I hope to have the landing page up by the end of day Monday.

I was chillin’ last night and came to realize that a plot device I’d intended to use never made it into the story. Here’s the thing. The plot device drove the name of the book!

Oops! I guess that’s why they call it a “working title” until it’s released.

So, Deja Vu will be released by next weekend but it will have a new name.

I’ve enjoyed working on this story, the way it challenged me as a writer.

I had to come up with a story that would do justice to the overall series plot and yet be able to stand on its own.

I had a lot of information to cover in a short amount of time – I mean pages – and while I wanted readers to love the characters and the setting, the nature of the series makes it so they play a unique role in that they are front and center in their own story and yet bit players in the bigger picture.

The stories in this series are “case files” and while readers may see some characters in more than one story or even throughout the series, the files are about specific events/incidents/etc.

Ghost Games is a contemporary technology driven science fiction series.

Although some “case files”, including the upcoming Rainmaker, will have a looser tie to the technology-centric theme.

Everything is on schedule. In the meantime, I wish readers a Happy AND HEALTHY Easter.

Stay tuned.

Karma available for download!

I am pleased to announce that Karma, first of the Metatron’s Army Chronicles stories is available for download.

As I have written, there is a free download available. However, the kindle edition will be 99 cents.

I hope you enjoy Karma, a story that ties into the Metatron’s Army Universe.

I am working on Deja Vu, another short story that will be tied to the Ghost Games Series.

I will be releasing Shadow of the Gods in the coming months.

Stay tuned!

Career Transcendence

No career should be a dragonfly in amber.

For the past several months if not years I’ve been transitioning my career away from a role I had outgrown.

It wasn’t boredom so much as completion that drove me to move on.

It’s a career that began quite a bit differently than I’d imagined.

Doesn’t that always seem to be the way?

A tremendous amount of work has gone into this process.

Most of it behind the scenes. Read: Internally.

I am proud of what I’ve accomplished and excited about the path before me.

I‘m finally where I intended to be. Not that that will keep me from exploring the new and undiscovered and making changes as appropriate and necessary.

I have been updating my web presence to reflect changes associated with the transition and will continue to do so. As part of these changes I have updated my bio page, adding a section on why I am focusing on science fiction.

No need to check it out. Just keep reading.

Why science fiction?

I’ve been looking at the sky all my life.  

Usually through windows.

Night or day.

But especially at night.

The sky is a doorway that separates our self-imagined existence from the realm of infinite possibility.  In writing science fiction, I can share my experiences from both sides of the doorway with others.

Experiences that transcend what is an accepted but often limiting reality.

Why parallel dimensions?

I’ve contemplated the idea this reality isn’t the only one since I was seven and asked my dad how he could be so certain we weren’t living in someone else’s snow globe.

My contemplation took on more significance after a Near Death Experience left me without a doubt there are other dimensions.

I’ve been living with this awareness for decades.  It has never been irreconcilable with any other part of my life.

In my stories, I explore various aspects of life lived in a world where multiple dimensions are not only an accepted fact, they are embraced through experience.

Why aliens?

Who better to help create wonderful stories than characters from cultural backgrounds completely unknown and foreign?

The possibilities – like the skies – are endless

Sharpening Focus

The journey of a writer is just that – a journey.

As part of mine I continue to make changes to my web presence that reflect where I am along the path.

Readers will notice the changes which illustrate a sharpened focus.

  • Paranormal Fiction is no longer referenced on elizabethmaxim.com

All works in this genre will continue to be available for purchase online. 

  • A focus on science fiction 

Where sci-fi meets passion.

  • Cauldron of the Gods is now available for pre-order.

I am hard at work on Shadow of the Gods, 2nd in the Dragon Core Series.

I will continue to post videos in which I share information and insight on the various works of fiction.

Stay tuned!

Mistakes Are In the Eye of the Beholder

So I’m in “final” edit with Cauldron of the Gods, first in the Dragon Core series which will be released at the end of this month.  As the past few weeks have been – to say the least – chaotic – I elected to go to a café to work.  

I needed to get out of my head.

I was chatting it up with a new employee – a lovely person – the kind who just makes you smile – and realized the good fortune in coming here.  Not only did I get to try a new dish, I got a reminder that mistakes are part of life.

Especially, grammatical mistakes.

To put it in context, I need to explain that throughout the years – perhaps centuries – the rules of grammar have changed.

Nowhere is this truer than in the publishing world.

I was explaining that I’ve been struggling with this particular manuscript – for whatever reason – with various aspects of grammar.

Having a teen who is learning “school grammar” doesn’t help because when I help with homework I have to remind myself the rules are different.

I explained that the rules of grammar are fluid – a concept difficult to explain to someone whose grades are dependent on a textbook rule that may or may not apply in life outside the classroom.

Not to mention there are an entirely different set of rules for writing doctoral dissertations. To the degree you have to buy a book just to learn them!

She shared a story with me about time working for an advertising firm in Boston.  Her boss, apparently unaware of the reality of fluid rules, called her out for writing “had had” in a sentence.

She told me she explained that it was a legitimate use of grammar.

It is. 

 I went on to share that I once worked for a woman who went ballistic because I did a typo on a presentation slide intended for automotive suppliers, writing India instead of Indiana.

Perhaps I was prognosticating a more global supply chain that has since come to pass?

She berated me for the mistake, taking great pains to tell me how I’d humiliated her.

Funny, I never heard about it from the sales rep or the customers.

I actually approached the sales rep to apologize.  He looked at me in confusion then said, “Oh, that.  Don’t worry about it.  No one noticed.”

I wouldn’t say no one.

But as I pointed out to the lady waiting on me this afternoon – it says more about them than us.

And it reminded me not to hold my shoulders up over my ears as I edit. Life, like grammar, is fluid.

In other words, Go With the Flow!