I'll start this post talking about the latter half of the title first, because I'm feeling flighty, I suppose. I had mentioned in the last blog post that I had a couple projects that I was working on, and I figure I might as well let everyone know what those were.
Firstly, and perhaps most obviously, is the second book in the Four Kingdoms Saga. As it stands, I'm about 20,000 words into the first draft, and I feel like I'm only just beginning to wrap up the first act. The Summerlark Elf was about 52,000 words when all was said and done, but I feel like book two is going to clock in at a substantially higher page count, it simply has to be longer in order for me to tell the story effectively. The book is also taking much longer to write. Now, I'm not talking George R.R. Martin or Pat Rothfuss long, but I started working on this book in January. There are a number of reasons attributed to this, most notably that a) full-time employment is not conducive to writing, and b) I'm building onto a framework that I laid out in book one, and that takes much more planning.
Secondly, I think I can safely talk about the project Deanna and I have been working on, as it's something that has really even predated the Summerlark Elf. Back in September, I got it in my head that I was going to write a children's book, so I cooked up a quick little poem all about a boy who wakes up to a house infested with goblins, kobolds, an owlbear, and a dragon, you know, typical kids' problems. I worked on fleshing it out, and soon enough I had a manuscript that I sent to Deanna to illustrate. Now, due to various artistic commitments, she was too tied up to dive full-on into this project, however she recently became freed up enough to tell me that I can start talking about the project, which is great, because I think its awesome. The book is called Dragon in the Doghouse, and with any luck, it will be available by the end of the summer. Deanna posted the tentative cover on her tumblr.
Finally, the Nostalgia portion of this post. For a sort of train-of-thought list of reasons, I've found myself listening to a couple old happy hardcore albums that I adored in my mid teenage years. For anyone who doesn't know, happy hardcore is a sub-genre of electronic music that sounds like a trance producer and a house producer got their hands on a circus organ and cranked the result up to a tempo of 160 beats per minute. It's a bit of an acquired taste, but I'm a sucker for a good melody and a frenetic back beat, and these old albums still hold up, even in light of the fact that by eighteen I was a raging punk rock kid.
Now, listening to these old albums, as is the case with anyone who listens to the music of their youth, reminds me of said youth. It reminds me of my old friends, how I fell out of touch with most of them, and how, in a big way, I wish I could reconnect.
I think back to my social group in high school, who were, all of us, a bunch of geeks who got together nearly every weekend and watched anime and played video games. Why we never played D&D at that age is pretty lost on me, to be honest. Matter of fact, there is a part of me, right now, listening to "Eyeopener" on Happy 2B Hardcore Chapter 3, who would give anything to be able to get all those people together for an all-weekend D&D session. This may just be the nostalgia talking, but I doubt it. I miss my old friends. Young ones reading this, heed me: keep in close touch with the people who matter to you, because you'd be surprised how quickly life will get in the way.