Four Quick Takes: Bookshelves, History, Giants, and More

Last month was interesting. Read some good books. Tried to do research. Decided to focus on my novella instead of my novel-length projects (for now). Wrote a chunk of the aforementioned novella. Oh, and I realized I needed to write a blog post.

Apparently some bloggers write posts in the format of several “quick takes.” I came up with four. Here goes!

#1: Perhaps my bookshelf needs more variety. (Just kidding.)

Bookshelf

(Lest you think, only one shelf of books?… don’t worry, there are three more shelves below this one.)

If you peruse the photograph closely, you may notice that J.R.R. Tolkien’s name features prominently on many of the volumes. I believe I own more books by Tolkien than by any other author.

Some people *ahem* might see this as a problem. They don’t understand.

#2: Primary sources are cool.

Research is my least favorite part of writing. Unless it’s research about something interesting. “Interesting” means things like theories about how dragons could breathe fire, obscure facts about Greek architecture, or how to forge a medieval sword. You know, fun stuff.

However, research is a time-consuming step of the writing process. The gaslamp fantasy/steampunk novel I’ve been working on is getting pushed back on my to-do list, partly because it requires lots of research before I can start properly. But all that said, research is anything but uninspiring.

For example, this month, I found a ledger from the 1880s. Primary sources are the best, when you can find them. You can find a story in something as mundane as a checkbook. And the beautiful handwriting!

#3: Finishing a draft is quite satisfying. Even if it’s not the end of the project.

If you’ve been following the progress bar on my blog, you’ll notice I recently completed the second draft of “Friend Giant” (a fantasy short story)!

It felt really good to finish this draft. The story is currently 3300 words (about 13 pages), and at this point, I’m just thankful that it came out to be somewhat coherent. 😀

This week, my writing group is taking a look at it. I had a lot of fun writing it, so I hope they like it. We’ll see. I do expect the story to be torn apart and reassembled before it’s finished. That’s how it usually works.

#4: Writing takes time.

I’m also working on that fantasy novella (see the progress bar in the sidebar/footer). It’s coming… it’s coming… I promise…

Bonus: a new Facebook page

I’m moving! Well, I’m moving all the updates about my writing and blog to a new page on Facebook. And I may end up posting a bit more frequently on Facebook than I do on the blog. So following the Facebook page will keep you up to date.

But if you are also subscribed to the newsletter, you will get other things too. Like… um, newsletters. And some exclusive short stories later this year. You wouldn’t want to miss that, of course.

Till next month. 🙂

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Katherine Beutner’s career aspirations as a child included Elf, Hobbit, or Fairy, but she settled for Writer and Graphic Designer. When not scribbling creative ideas in a notebook, she searches for new books, art materials, willing victims to read her stories, and ways to make more frequent references to The Lord of the Rings.

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