Rachel Neumeier

Fantasy and Young Adult Fantasy Author

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Does this count as a milestone?

Back on June 2nd? I made it to 64,000 words on my current WIP. And last night? That’s right, back to 64,000 words.

There’s a broader lesson in there someplace, something about making progress slowly or two steps back for one step forward or something. Whatever! The longest the WIP has ever been is 71,000 words and I expect I will get comfortably past that sometime next week, particularly as various chunks I cut will be added back into the ms as I get to the new, later, scenes they now belong to.

The plan is still to be finished with it by the end of August. Since I have two weeks off in August before the fall semester starts, I can do a push then and get it wrapped up. And there should be a lot less revising to do on the first go-through, since a lot of the big stuff got done in this current stop-and-revise session. I am dying to get to a different WIP, but also dying to make inroads on my TBR pile . . . choices, choices! My life is so tough!

Meanwhile! I will do a quick post on the Hugo nominees that I’m voting for in a few days, after I’ve read the other three novellas and LEVIATHAN’S WAKE. Which arrived yesterday, and it is a monster, 600 pages, which is GREAT, don’t get me wrong, I love long books, but it’s sure heftier than I expected. I like the opening couple of paragraphs, but I want to read all the novellas first before I really start it.

And speaking of the novellas? Just finished this one this morning.

“The Man Who Bridged The Mist” won the Nebula, and at the moment, though I’ve got another three to read, I’m dead positive I’m going to vote for it for the Hugo. Loved it! LOVED it! Apparently Kij Johnson has no trouble with people reading his novella online, which is GREAT. That link above is straight from his website. So click and enjoy!

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10 Comments Does this count as a milestone?

  1. Matthew

    Thank you for posting the Kij Johnson link — I’m really excited to read the novella since I really enjoyed her two Japanese themed fantasy novels. It’s been a while since they came out, but I’m still hoping book three will get published one day…

  2. Craig

    The novellas are a very strong group of stories — much stronger than the short stories, for certain; probably stronger than the novelettes, though a lot of those seemed good but not really to my taste.

    LEVIATHAN is the only one of the novels I’ve actually read as yet. I liked it quite a bit, despite the horror element (no spoiler; that shows up in the prologue).

    I didn’t know “Mist” had won the Nebula: I liked it a lot although I don’t think it’s #1 for me. It makes for oddly compelling reading, considering that —

    SPOILER WARNING

    — remarkably little actually happens. They have a plan; it works; none of the potential catastrophes actually happen. Did you see it as clearly fantasy or as possibly-SF?

  3. Rachel

    Oh, there are novels? Japanese-themed novels? Well, count me in; I need to go look those up. Even if there isn’t a third one (yet).

  4. Rachel

    I agree, for me the novellas were by far the hardest category to sort out. I had a hard time deciding whether to leave the Johnson story in the number-one spot, but in the end that’s where it’s staying. I thought the Valente story was really interesting and neat and I loved a lot of things about it, but I REALLY loved the sort of understated but perfectly developed protagonist in the Johnson story. Which at the time I would have pegged as fantasy, but since you ask . . . maybe it really is SF.

    Plus, hey, the stuff about materials science was a kick, after writing the Griffin Mage trilogy.

    I’m halfway through LEVIATHAN WAKES — I like it a lot, more now that the two protagonists are together, but not sure it’s going to bump Walton’s book from the top spot for me.

  5. Craig

    Gosh, it’s almost a realtime conversation —

    I’m planning to read AMONG OTHERS and EMBASSYTOWN before voting, but haven’t done so yet. (Book 2 zombies and Book 6 Martin, I’m not even planning to read.) So I may yet put Walton in the top spot. That said, if I can’t decide I’ll give the edge to SF over fantasy because it’s a Hugo.

    Five of the six novellas are Hugo-quality, I think: even the zombie story is a solid piece of work. The odd man out is “The Man Who Ended History,” which I found badly overdone. Mike & Linda also assumed “Mist” was fantasy; maybe it’s just that I’d been thinking about SF that looks like fantasy, but the monsters of the mist looked more alien than magical to me.

    Any of the authors on the list for the John W. Campbell award jump out at you? For good or ill? I’m really feeling my lack of familiarity with the contemporary field when I look at that list.

  6. Linda S

    @4 Plus, hey, the stuff about materials science was a kick, after writing the Griffin Mage trilogy.

    Both Mike and I thought of your Griffin Mage book when we read that story!

    I agree with Craig that the novella field was strong. I’m having a hard time sorting my top 3 (“Kiss Me Twice,” “Silently and Very Fast,” and “Mist”).

  7. Rachel

    Linda — I kept saying, “Right, you need the bridge supports under compression!” and stuff all the way through, it was really an added pleasure for me. I wonder if Johnson ever read STRUCTURES by Gordon?

    Those were my top picks, too, but I’m putting them in this order: “Mist”, “Silently and Very Fast”, “Kiss Me Twice.” I really liked them all a lot! But I decided a personal enjoyment of the materials science thing was a fine reason to give “Mist” the top spot. Plus, I liked the ending. The ending of “Silently”? A bit depressing. Which isn’t bad, but not really my thing either.

    Craig — I honestly haven’t QUITE decided which novel to put in the number one spot, but LW is up there.

  8. Rachel

    Also! Forgot to say: I really don’t feel comfortable voting for the Campbell Award. I liked Karen Lord’s book REDEMPTION IN INDIGO quite a bit, but I’m not familiar with any of the others, other than the stories they have on the Hugo ballot, so I’m leaving that category blank.

  9. Rachel

    And I love the idea of fox women! For some reason, just always found them appealing. Adding these to my wish list . . . my rapidly growing out of control wish list . . .

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