Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Spec Fic NZ Wellington meet-up & general update

Last Saturday (6th August) I organised the Wellington Spec Fic NZ meet-up, as Anna Caro was away in Europe. It was great to meet several other New Zealand Spec fic writers.

Stephen Minchin, who is starting up a New Zealand publisher, Steam Press for speculative fiction, was greatly enlightening about the difficulties of getting books published and sold in NZ.

Craig Gulow writes graphic novels and the pair of us indulged in some Alan Moore appreciation (well, as we both said, the Man is God) - we also discussed just where the space programme had gone wrong (the Space Shuttle basically), and Craig recommended "The High Frontier" by Gerard O Neill - a roadmap for what the US could have done after the Apollo programme.

Also attending were Alicia Ponder and Kay (apologies I didn't catch the surname).

Craig also extolled the virtues of Scrivener - a classy piece of writing software. Alas, it doesn't actually do the writing for you (but where would be the fun in that), but does provide lots of neat little organising functions.

As for my writing....

Monster Hunting story - frankly, I'm fed up with the damn thing, but WILL finish it. Thanks to my wife, who pointed out a shedload of problems with my 5th draft, the 6th draft may actually have a bit more coherance. I think it's helped that I walked away from it for about three weeks. Re-reading draft 6 reveals that it's not so bad, just needs those final dew tightenings, and a bit of a final punch.

Superhero story - remains in limbo as we wait for the final culling on the anthology.
Trip Hawker and the Asteroid of Death - accepted some time last year, but the project seems to be a little stalled...

BUT - having had the Spec Fic meet-up, I realise that I'd sunk into a bit of a funk with my writing, lacking the willpower to sit down at the keyboard - however, chatting to other writers and bouncing ideas around has reignited me a bit.

So next time I write this, there will be a Monster Hunting story out there, yearning for acceptance, and hopefully a couple of other things too.

AND - my novel will be lurching towards some kind of start....

Today's Drabble - if you worry that your project at work is difficult, think how bad Noah had it...

There was a problem with the spiders. There were 40,000 species. Noah had been instructed to get a pair representing every living creature.
Even forgetting the extra deck the Ark would need, and finding a pair of all 40,000 types, how was he going to stop the females from eating the males?
And the little buggers scared the crap out of him.
And that was just the Spiders. The other million odd invertebrates were hardly less difficult. At least they were small.
He reviewed his project plan. The hundred thousand vertebrates were going to need a lot of space too.


  1. Richard,
    So glad the meet-up re-lit your writing fire. Wonderful conversations with fellow writers have that effect, I've found. Would you mind if I used bit of this blog as a meet-up testimonial on the SpecFicNZ website? Thanks also for running the meet-up while Anna was away.


  2. Ripley - by all means use whatever bits of my blog may be useful - I might even pick up a few more followers that way!