Posts Tagged ‘NaNoWriMo


National Novel Writing Month Finished — OPH II Not So Much

I haven’t spent a lot of time here on the blog talking about National Novel Writing Month this year, but I have been giving pretty regular updates over on my Facebook Writer’s Page. You guys are all following that, right? You should. All the cool kids are doing it.

Anyway, if you have been following, you know I’ve been slowly inching towards the annual November goal of 50,000 words of a novel, and that this year’s book is the all-new sequel to my first novel, Other People’s Heroes. In this new book, it’s been several months since the first novel ended, Siegel City has changed dramatically, and not everybody is happy about it. Josh Corwood learns that life as a legitimate superhero isn’t as great as he expected it to be, and a new enemy begins operating right under their noses.

I’m about two-thirds of the way finished with the first draft of Other People’s Heroes II as of right now. (That’s not going to be the official title, by the way. I’m just calling it that because I haven’t come up with a title yet. Titles are hard for me for some reason. The original OPH was going to be called Capes and Masks almost right up until the final moment, but I never quite liked that title and kept looking for something better For marketing reasons, I’m thinking of calling the sequel Tyler Perry’s Fifty Shades of Ways to Die Hard in Twilight, Presented By Oprah.)

However, now that I’ve reached my goal, OPH II is going to be moved over just for a bit to make room for a few other projects. While I still intend to work on OPH II every day, I’ve got not one, but three other projects that are more time-sensitive, all of them holiday-related. In the coming days, you can look forward to…

Reel to Reel: The Christmas Special. I’m going to give the R2R treatment to 25 of the most beloved Christmas TV specials of all time. Charlie Brown, Rudolph, Frosty, the Muppets — I’m gonna talk about all of them over the next few weeks.

The Obligatory EBI Vol. 2: Is Santa Claus Super? Like my first Obligatory EBI collection, this will be a short, cheap e-book collecting some of my best EBI columns and other features associated with the Christmas season, including the now-legendary column that asked the eternal question, is Santa Claus a superhero? This one will hopefully be available no later than Monday, and I cannot WAIT for you guys to see the kick-ass cover Jacob Bascle has created for this one. He’s outdone himself.

The Ghost of Simon Tower. As you know, I do a new Christmas short story every year, and this year’s tale is going to take place in-between OPH and OPH II. It’s going to star Josh Corwood and a mysterious holiday visitor. And I’m not going to say any more about that just now.

And then I’ll get back to working full-time on OPH II. And then I’ll throw myself wholeheartedly into the revisions for The Pyrite War, the story of Siegel City’s first superhero. And hopefully you’ll see BOTH of those full-length novels in 2013.

So even though I’ve gotten extremely busy in my personal life as of late, in case you didn’t know, I find that this is only making me MORE determined to get my work out there, to build my audience, and to give you guys some content. So if you’re among the people who like reading my stuff, thank you wholeheartedly. All I want is to give you more to love.


The Pyrite War… FINISHED!

The plan continues apace…

Despite a remarkably busy week, including an insane schedule of End of Course testing at work and preparing the play I’m currently directing (Alan Ball’s Five Women Wearing the Same Dress — four more performances at the Thibodaux Playhouse, beginning Thursday), I managed to find time this week to finally finish the first draft of my current Work in Progress, The Pyrite War. This is a great feeling. It started as my NaNoWriMo project for 2010, and although I hit the required 50,000 word mark, the story wasn’t nearly finished. Unfortunately, as tends to happen, I lost the thread of the story for a while after that, getting distracted by other things. I found it again a couple of months ago, and although I haven’t reclaimed the furious pace NaNoWriMo requires, since I returned to it, The Pyrite War has been my sole fiction project. A few days ago, I wrote the last word of the book (the word, if you’re interested, is “do”) — 90’027 words total, spread over 17 chapters and an epilogue. And The Pyrite War version 1.0 is finished.

Other People’s Heroes, at its core, is the story of a young man who believes in heroes helping a lost city to find its way. The Pyrite War is about an older man, a more cynical one, who must overcome that cynicism so that the same city isn’t lost at the very dawn of the first heroic age. Set in 1939, The Pyrite War is the story of Siegel City’s first superhero. Although none of our friends from OPH appear in this book, their are threads that reach back in time. I am a true lover of heroic legacies. This story will show you how some of the legacies in OPH began.

It’s not ready to share, not yet. This is just the first draft, after all. But I’m quite proud of the story and the fact that it’s finished.

So my plans for the next few months are as follows:

•Complete final editing on Opening Night of the Dead. Then, as soon as the cover for that book is completed, it will be made available in print and eBook.
•Do a second draft of The Pyrite War. This time around I intend to add a few bits, specifically intended to strengthen the mystery (yes, mystery) and give a little more depth to one of the more important relationships in the story I don’t think got quite enough screentime in the first go-around.
•Send the second draft to the Legion of Beta Readers for comments and editing. Also send it to the great Jacob Bascle, who has designed the cover art for all the Siegel City stories thus far and, I hope, will be willing to do so for a very long time. The goal is to finish all edits and the cover and have this book available to you before the end of the year.
•Jump into the next fiction project. I don’t actually know what that will be yet. I may return to an incomplete project, of which I have several (including two more “World of Siegel City” novels). I may take a third attempt at the true sequel to OPH, 14 Days of Asphalt, which I’ve already done two versions of but I still feel goes in a strange (and not in a good way) direction about halfway through, and I can’t quite figure out a fix. I may start something else entirely, although at the moment I don’t have any brand new ideas fully formed enough to really start on. Whatever I ultimately decide to do, I’ll keep you posted.

That’s really all I’m willing to say about The Pyrite War just yet, but if you want another taste of the story, go to my Facebook Fan Page. I’ve posted costume designs for (almost) all of the heroes and villains who appear in the book… although at this stage of the game I won’t tell you much information about them. Gotta keep some secrets to myself, after all.

Keep reading…


Something to talk about…

I find myself in something of a blogging quandary. At the moment, I don’t really have much to talk about. That doesn’t mean nothing is going on, it’s just that the stuff that’s happening doesn’t exactly require a day-to-day update. With Story Structure done (for the time being), November is turning out to be pretty quiet for me on the pop culture front. I am writing, in fact I’m probably further along with this year’s National Novel Writing Month project than I’ve ever been before a week into November. But I’ve got nothing to say about that except, “I wrote a few more thousand words today. Coming along well.” Let’s face it, that’s not satisfying for either of us.

Could I write about the preponderance of Christmas decorations, commercials, and special episodes of Wheel of Fortune that are already being thrust upon the American citizen, even though it’s a whopping three weeks before Thanksgiving. But honestly, the only thing more ubiquitous than Christmas decorations at this early stage of the season is people complaining about Christmas decorations at this early stage of the season. I don’t want to be just another voice in the crowd here.

I suppose I could remind you that I’ve got two novels, one short story and one anthology for sale as e-Books on all devices, and that the novels are also both available in print, and that you can find the links to these reminders over on the righthand column of this very webpage, but I’ve said that sort of thing a lot lately. I could also humbly request that those of you who have partaken of my writing in any way could be of enormous assistance to me if you would be so good as to write reviews of the books on any of those websites where you purchased them, that doing so helps to raise the profile of the books when people are browsing sites like, and that could be very good for me. I could even mention that Blake M. Petit the Writer now as a Facebook Page devoted to his projects, and that’s where you could go to find previews, images of characters from the OPH universe who haven’t turned up yet, and chat with me and other fans of Siegel City. I could tell you that. But isn’t that kind of pedantic of me?

So sorry, friends. Guess there’ll be no blog post tonight.


NaNoWriMo: Meeting the Goal

Tonight, my work on The Pyrite War hit 50,404 words. The story isn’t finished, but the 50K word goal has been met, so once again, I can call myself a NaNoWriMo winner.

Now, in the past, I’ve had a tendency to hit the 50K mark, not be finished with the story, and then drift away from the tale and not finish, at least not for some time. I’m bound and determined not to let that happen this time. I’m going to keep working, daily, until this first draft is finished. If you’ll look at the chart here, you’ll see I’ve only skipped one day of writing all month, and since I gave that day to Erin, I think that was more than worth it.

But this book will be finished.


NaNoWriMo: The Updates Continue

I’m going to cross the 40,000 wordcount mark on my NaNoWriMo novel, The Pyrite War, tonight. The story is progressing nicely, and I’m only 10,000 away from the goal to “win” NaNoWriMo. I’ve no doubt that I’ll hit it before the November 30 deadline.


Looking at the story, I’ve got a hell of a lot more than 10,000 words left to write. There’s too much story left to tell, and what I’m writing keeps taking me in directions I didn’t expect. This is a good thing, believe it or not. 50,000 words is the bare minimum length a work of fiction can be and still be considered a novel, which is why it’s the benchmark the founders of NaNoWriMo chose. Most publishers, however, want their novels to clock in closer to the 90,000 word range, which is much more marketable. And the goal here, lest we forget, is to get these books into print. Reaching 40K and knowing I’ve still got a lot of work left to do is actually a very good thing.

That said, I don’t think there’s any chance of actually finishing the story in the next ten days. That’s okay. Because I’m making this pledge to you right now. I’m not going to stop when I hit 50k. I’m not going to stop when I hit November 30. I’m not going to stop until I finish the story. I’m going to maintain my daily wordcount goal (that’s a 1700-word minimum, for the record) every day until the first draft of The Pyrite War is finished. I’ll try to keep you guys updated.



NaNoWriMo: The Pyrite War Update

I know I haven’t told you guys too much about The Pyrite War, this year’s NaNoWriMo project. I do have a few things to share with you though. It is set in Siegel City, home of the characters of Other People’s Heroes, but set in the past — 1938 to be precise. And like happened when I was writing OPH in the first place, as I continue with this story I keep finding new and different characters, avenues, and ideas that I not only want to explore, but seem to fit wonderfully in the context of what I’ve already written. It’s a fantastic feeling.  I’m past the halfway point of NaNoWriMo’s 50,000 word goal, and I don’t think I’ve gotten to the halfway point of the actual story yet. And this is a very good thing.

Here’s a quick dialogue from a scene I wrote to day, just to give you a taste:


“Why is it a crime to be prepared?”

“It’s not a crime to be prepared for cutting your arm or for getting a snake bite in the middle of the woods. Being prepared for breaking into somebody else’s home? Samantha, that’s the definition of a crime!”

“You worry too much, Davey.” With a flick of her wrist, the door popped open and swung into the apartment. “You first.”

“You are certifiable.





A reminder

Hey, guys. I don’t really have the time for a serious blog post tonight, I’m afraid. I’ve got NaNoWriMo to occupy my time, both of my jobs (the one that pays and the one that doesn’t) seem to be in a state of chaos at the moment, and to be frank, I’m kind of getting exhausted. But I press on, because I take all of these responsibilities for which I receive no monetary remuneration very seriously. Because I’m an idiot.

So as I tap away on The Pyrite War tonight, may I direct your attention to Tales of the Curtain? My new online fiction experiment, which launched a few weeks ago and where I posted a new installment just earlier today? It’s hellacool and it’s waiting for your input.

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March 2020

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