Reblog (My Experience at RavenCon)

Just a quick reblog from my newly started author site (looks kind of like this site, right?). I recently attended RavenCon, this was my experience. Give it a go if you have the time.


I’m walking through the darkened courtyard of the DoubleTree Hotel in Williamsburg, Virginia, trailing just behind Chris Kennedy. The sun has dropped from the sky, much like my morale after sitting in on a panel where one panelist plugged their book eighteen times. I know this because I kept tally. Eighteen. Putting this from my […]

via Fear and Loathing at RavenCon 2017 — Corey D. Truax

The Legion Grows: Another Editor Reports for Duty

Red Pen of Doom.jpgMy back was against the wall. The grammar errors were all around me.

“I’m a developmental editor,” I said. “This grammar stuff is kicking me in the tender bits.”

“Fear not, Corey-the-human,” a voice sounded through the darkness. “The Wielder of the Red Pen of Doom is here.”

In a sick-ass flash of power and insight, Thomas, the mercenary copy editor, hacked the manuscript to shreds.

All was right in the world again.

In short, Thomas joined the Legion. Find out more about the mercenary proofreader and read his intro by clicking right here (the link will teleport you to the Human Legion website).

You can look forward to seeing our collaborative editing prowess on display in J.R. Handley’s next book in the Sleeping Legion series: Operation Breakout.

More of an update than an informative post today, but I have some how-to posts coming. I’ll be starting a new series tackling point of view, as this is the most common issue I seem to deal with in my editing work (also the item most people ask me about). Until we cross quills again, keep reading, keep writing, and as always—stay sharp!

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Writing Project: Four Horseman Anthology

newsboy

My current condition. 

If you’re curious about one of the upcoming projects the author half of my brain is tackling, here’s a reblog from my newly minted author page (still building it up). Robots, mercenaries, science fiction, bounty hunters, and fun times await.

I‘m pleased to announce J.R. Handley and I were invited to brainmerge and toss together a short story in the Four Horseman universe. If you are into science fiction stories where people jump into robots and lay waste to enemies, the Four Horseman series might be something you want to check out. First, a word from […]

via Writing Projects: Four Horseman Anthology — Corey D. Truax

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Closing the Door & Opening it Back Up

door.jpgIt’s been a couple weeks (maybe more) since I’ve posted. Fear not, I still pull breath. I’ve had a supremely busy month. Stephen King talks about the need to close the door when you work. Well, I didn’t just close it; I bricked it up.

I don’t have a lot of options when it comes to leveraging time. So when a 100k novel came along that needed a structural edit, I had to break the schedule to make the deadline. Unfortunately, this blog was one source I had to slice away.

hourglassThis last month, I’ve been toiling away on that 100k novel. My contract didn’t stipulate a timeline. The understanding was it would need to be done around Christmas. The timeline got moved forward to the first week of December.

Editing takes time (especially structural editing), and this blog is what I had to sacrifice to find more of the precious stuff. The good news is I finished the structural edit, and am now breezing through the final copy editing phase. I plan to be finished early next week. Then time, those precious grains of sand, will stop slipping through my fingers so quickly. On a positive note, the author was thrilled with the results of the structural edit — I hope sales reflect his enthusiasm.

Side rant, have you ever wanted to move to a new state during the holidays? Yeah, me neither. Regardless, this seems to be the way of things. Or, maybe we won’t be moving until January…

moving boxes.jpgYes, the life of the military spouse is one of constant questions and inconsistency. I probably won’t know with 100 percent certainty until a week prior of the move date. This knowledge will preface an explosion of moving boxes, bubble wrap, and packing tape.

Let’s not even talk about having to dissolve my editing business and move it to new state to prevent being taxed by two states/cities at once…sigh

What about my own work? What of Wastelander? Well, the second I signed a contract to edit, my client took precedence. While normally I can divvy out the schedule, this was not one of those instances. I was barely able to finish the contract in time. With the heavy lifting of the structural edit out of the way, I now have the flexibility to write again (my books and this blog).

So, what’s happened since I’ve been out? Thor turned one, our families came to visit, my wife’s 12-hour shift rotation was extended, my friend MLS Weech prepared to get his book out into the world (Kirkus Review & Red City), I realized we’d be moving sooner than we thought, and I drank 27 gallons of coffee.

birthday bay.jpgAll said, it’s been a productive month, albeit a busy one. It’s also been a month where I have felt particularly isolated. I have lots of writers/bloggers to catch up on reading. There is a comfort in coming back here and seeing the cyber landscape remains basically unchanged.

I posted a while back about the schedule I would be keeping here on the QE page. Obviously, that didn’t work out. From now on, I’m just going to play it by clock. As this blog is often a reflection of my life, it can be assumed the future will be dotted by chaos explosions of activity followed by moments of eerie silence.

For those of you who were kind enough to email me, I can’t tell you how much I appreciate your concern. I will be responding to those emails over the course of the next couple days. I’m excited to hear about what I’ve been missing out on in your lives.

All right, I’m all shared out. Future posts will be about writing, editing, and tomfoolery — promise.

nano.pngSpeaking of writing, how’d the NaNoWriMo go? Any of you manage to kick your word counts in the teeth? While this is always a chaotic month for those who partake, I do enjoy browsing the interwebs and seeing the mountains of ~50k books of varying quality and content. The sound of tables creaking as slush piles grow is echoing through the universe. Hopefully you let your book marinate a month or so, give it a rewrite, then edit it before you publish.

That’s it for today, I’ve got words to edit and coffee to drink. Now that I’m through the crucible of deadlines, look forward to more frequent posts. Truly, I’ve missed our collaboration. Until then, keep reading, keep writing, and as always — stay sharp!

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Novel Finished: Congrats M.L.S. Weech

matt at his booth

Matt manning his table at a convention.  

I‘m very excited to share  with you all that M.L.S. Weech has completed his second novel, Caught.  A big congratulations to him!  It’s always a thrill for me to see my friends finish projects.

Other than being a friend for him to vent to when the words were hard to come by, I also provided Matt some basic editing for his novel.  Really, it was just my sneaky way of getting to read the book a couple times before anyone else.

When I read the book the first time I thought, this is a really good story!  Sure, there were minor issues here and there, but the bones of the story were solid and strong.  Intriguing characters, interesting conflicts, night terrors, rogue generals, mad scientists—it’s all stuff I like reading about.

Then he executed a series of revisions.  When I read through it this last time I was ecstatic. It’s always a treat to see the evolution of a novel.  I’m glad to have been a tiny cog in the Weech machine.

Enough about me!  I encourage you all to swing by his space and give him some love. The reblog info is below.


After more time and revisions that I could ever count, I’m so very proud to say that my second book is ready to send off for review and, more importantly, publishing!  I don’t know that this feelin…

Source: Caught is FINISHED!

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Update: What is QE Doing?

Photo for Human Legion.jpgI know it’s Wasteland Wednesday, but I wanted to take a day to share what I’m into these days.  I haven’t taken a day to talk about life for a while and Wednesday is as good a day as any.  Perhaps, in addition to wasteland updates, I will start offering some author/editor updates on Wednesday too.  As always, I’m tweaking this page as I go.

First off, some book updates.  My rewrites of Wastelander: The Drake Legacy will kick off here in two weeks or so.  I’m excited to get back into the mix, get the rewrites done, and start pushing the book out to my beta readers and my editor (yes, I pay an editor even though I’m an editor).

As for the novella, The Wastelander Survival Guide, it has been outlined completely and I have begun the first-draft.  However, I’m only getting about one hour a day (maybe two if I’m really lucky) of solid writing done toward that project right now.

The graphic novel idea is in its infancy.  The concept is to provide an origin story for Drake.  The current book starts thirty years after the fall of the United States.  So naturally, there is a lot of backstory I could condense into some graphic novels without repeating information from the main book.  This project is a lower priority, so I dedicate time to it when I can (mostly  when my wife has the day off and is spending some one-on-one time bonding with Thor).

As my digital artwork is slowly getting “better,” I am hoping to be able to dump a large amount of imagery on my artist for him to run with.  I know he can work faster when he has better blueprints to work from.  It’s rough, but I take a few minutes every day to practice and improve my artwork, or at least watch a video or two at Ctrl+Paint while I’m eating food (one of the best websites I’ve found that has free videos and content to improve your physical and digital art).  Here are some examples of things I have found on the internet for inspiration and digitally painted or sketched in Photoshop.

 

Also, obviously, I have been writing the content for the graphic novel.  This has been slow going as I have been reading a bunch of graphic novels to develop a style of writing to complement the imagery.  In the way of eating your greens (and really desserts too), graphic novels are perhaps one of the more enjoyable studies into writing mechanics I have embarked on.

The Editor

Now for some other projects I’m collaborating with as an editor (that the authors are okay with me mentioning).

M.L.S. Weech is currently busting through the rewrites of his new book, Caught.  We are old friends and have worked together on other projects as well (The Journals of Bob Drifter).  I know he is likely excited as he is closing down on the final stages on Caught.  For me, it’s really exciting to see how the book has improved with each pass he has made.  When he started, it was a great story.  Now, it’s even better.

Also on his horizon, we have been looking at his book, 1,200 (but that’s a book for him to introduce and talk about more when he is ready).  I’m also expecting to see a short story from him as he is collaborating as part of an anthology (good job bud). He wrote a post about that collaboration you can read about right here.

SleepingLegion_Book1_08.jpgI‘ve also just recently started collaborating with the Human Legion.  Tim C. Taylor and J.R. Handley are working on two separate military science fiction series over there (separate series, but in the same universe).  Currently, I’m working with J.R. and the Sleeping Legion series he is writing.  They were even nice enough to write a post about me and welcome me to their team.  (Thanks Tim!)

As I’ve just dipped my toes into that universe, I’ve been reading to familiarize myself with the content.  I’m about halfway through The Legion Awakes (Book 1 of the Sleeping Legion series), and I can say with confidence, if you like military science fiction, you are going to enjoy these books.

On the homefront, Thor keeps me on my toes and my atom splitting wife is on 12-hour rotational shifts.  Depending on what happens in the next few months, we could possibly be relocating to Virginia, Washington, Hawaii, Japan, California, or who knows where else.  While we are a Navy family, the Marines say, semper fidelis (always faithful).  I like to say, semper gumby (always flexible).  As such, I’m ready for every eventuality.

thor and me.jpgWith all this being said, I wanted to take a moment to thank all of you who find the time to stop by my page and give it a read.  I really love when we get to exchange some comments, and I’m always learning from all of you.

Given all the projects I’m currently working on, and the stay-at-home daddy daycare (which is highest on the priority list), I haven’t been able to comment on as many blogs as I would like.  I’m sorry for that.

When I find the time, I make every effort I can to browse and read all of your content.  Just know if you see a “like” from me, it isn’t a “spam like.”  I probably am reading your post on my phone while feeding Thor a bottle or juggling some other task.  Trying to write a comment of meaning on my iPhone is nigh impossible (my fingers are too big and clumsy).

Also, the days of me being able to reply to comments as they roll in have unfortunately come to an end.  Thor is only taking two naps instead of three, and that reduces my daily work time by about 1.5 hours.  I still am replying to all the comments I get on my posts, and I love getting them, but I am doing it all at once now.  So if your comment sits for a bit before I respond to it, just know I was likely managing some kind of diaper mishap or blistering my fingers on a style guide.

Did I mention semper gumby…

That’s the update!  Again, thanks for swinging in.  I’ll try to pepper in some of these author/editor updates from time-to-time so you don’t all think I’ve become some kind of cyborg blogging construct (not that I would divulge it if I was).  Until tomorrow, keep reading, keep writing, and as always – stay sharp!

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Wastelander: First Draft Finito

Wastelander Layout

The first draft of Wastelander is finally finished!  It took a lot longer to finish than I thought it would.  I’ve been told first books are like that.  To highlight this point, here is a post from June 13, 2016 where I thought I would be done with the book in just a few weeks.  Whoops!

Now it’s time to shelf the beast and forget it exists.  When I come back to it in six plus weeks, I will do a one sitting read through (83,723 words), blast it with red ink, and rewrite the whole book all over again!  In the meantime, here are the things that will be happening:

  • I should be getting my cover art in the very near future.  Michail is doing great work.
  • Drafting of The Wastelander Survival Guide has begun.  This is the complementing novella to the book.
  • The Wastelander Survival Guide is illustrated so I need to make a story board for this and search out a good line/ink artist for rough illustrations (the drawings are created by teenage character from the main book so they shouldn’t be too spiffy).
  • I have a stack of books on writing query letters and I’ve already got a “shortlist” of agents to contact.  It’s time to start writing and polishing query letters.  Look forward to posts about this.
  • I have pre-generated a series of teasers for the book. I’ll talk about this below.
  • I have two short stories outlined that I want to write and submit to literary magazines.  One is science fiction and the other is popular culture.  I’m looking forward to writing outside of the Wastelander universe for a spell.
  • I am picking up a new client (maybe even two) in September on the business side.  So I’m looking forward to jumping into to some new worlds.  Two clients is pretty much my monthly limit as general editing consumes a bunch of time.  Especially when we are working on novel sized projects.
  • Raising my son (the tiny Thor) and helping my radioactive wife fulfill her military obligations.
  • (Oh yeah, I write a daily blog post too…)

I mentioned above I have already generated some teasers for the book.  Here is the strategy I have decided to implement with releasing information about the book.  I didn’t want to release straight excerpts from the book.  Some publishers/agents frown on this and I’m attempting to publish traditionally.

My solution was Wasteland Wednesday.  This will be a series of shorts (under 1000 words) covering different elements from the book.  I will also be offering some graphic creations as well.  Some of the shorts will be little vignettes about characters, and some will provide you background/historic information regarding the world they live in.  I will share some of my character sheets, world building tools, and “behind the scenes” information as well.  Spoiler information will be redacted.

Wasteland Wednesday.jpg

You’ll learn a lot of things about the wasteland universe through these.  However, none of it will spoil the book for you; it should enhance it.  I’m creating a new category for these shorts titled “Wastelander.”  This will keep it organized for current and future readers.  I’m redirecting most of my Wastelander universe content to this category for housekeeping purposes.

wiki page.pngMost of us know that only about ten percent of what we know about our universes, characters, and cultural histories make it into the book.  This will allow me to share those aspects, and give me a place to compile them into a wiki of sorts.

That’s pretty much all the gears that are in motion right now.  I’m sure some monkey wrenches will start raining down from the heavens soon.  No worries though!  I’m wearing a viking helmet/hardhat.  I hope some of you are excited to learn about the Wasteland!  I’m thrilled to share.  Until tomorrow, keep reading, keep writing, and as always – stay sharp!

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