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As it turns out, I find myself NOT so busy this September. It always seems to be the month that I’m playing catch-up, doing a hundred things at a time…and making a blog post in which I decry the swamped-edness of the month of September. The only thing on my writing agenda at the moment is my 2013 Muskoka Novel Marathon W-I-P, Alive & Kicking.

Alive & Kicking is a first for me. It is BOOK 2 of my 2010 Muskoka Novel Marathon BEST YOUNG ADULT NOVEL AWARD winning novel, Half Dead & Fully Broken! (-: I love that I got to use the ampersand in both novel titles. Makes them, you know, connected! (-;

Half Dead & Fully Broken is with my agent, Stacey Donaghy. She has it out on submission to places which shall here remain nameless. It was Stacey who suggested there might be more to the story than just a standalone novel. And I’m grateful to her for suggesting this, as I had a lot of fun writing BOOK 2. Book 1 is about a good ghost—the brother of the narrator—coming back to attempt to close all the loose ends prior to going to the great beyond. Is he successful? I’m not saying! Der. Book 2 was fun to write because the ghost in this one does NOT have good intentions. He’s actually a nasty piece of work. He does a lot of mean and nasty things before the hero—the alive brother, Carter Colby, from the first book—manages to get things in place to attempt to stop him. Does the hero conquer? You know I can’t tell you that! Der.

Anyway, I’m ALMOST finished writing the first draft of Alive & Kicking. I only got around 32,000 words during the 72-hour marathon. I really didn’t feel like I was focusing very well at the marathon this year. My goal was 48,000 words. It’s coming to the 50,000 word mark now and I’m so close to the end I can almost smell the ectoplasm.

That’s mainly what my September has consisted of, writing wise. Oh, I also helped my friend, M-E Girard, set up a private writing forum site for our writing community, WCDR. It’s been fun seeing this come to fruition. It’s going to be great building new relationships with the writers in our group. Believe it or not, we are now over 300 members strong! If you’re in Durham Region, Ontario, and you’re not a member of the Writers’ Community of Durham Region, you truly do NOT know what you’re missing. Check them out: WCDR

And, now, back to my agent. Stacey Donaghy was an agent with Corvisiero Literary Agency. This month, she unveiled her own agency, DONAGHY LITERARY GROUP. I made the move with her to the new agency. I’m thrilled to be represented by Stacey…she’s a real dynamo! Her agency is currently closed to submissions, but you should check out her SUBMISSION GUIDELINES and consider submitting when she opens her doors to submissions in early December, 2013.

Well, I guess that’s it as far as a check-in goes. I’ve been spending so much time in Muskoka, at our new trailer, that the blog has really been taking a backseat in my life. The park is closing soon, so it will be back to business as usual for the writing life. This means that I will be finishing Alive & Kicking.

After A&K is completed, I will be attempting a NA (New Adult) title…along with a YA wherein a boy comes out of the trees and gets himself wrapped up in the life of the girl who just moved into the house beyond his magical woods. It’ll be a story about him adjusting to being a teenager (as opposed to being the soul of a tree) and his romantic ties to the girl from the house…as they both adjust to being new at the area high school. I came up with this future YA project as a sample of a BOOK-TRAILER-AS-NOVEL-OUTLINE for a workshop I put together recently. I threw the book trailer together in a few minutes to show one way a writer can create an outline—especially helpful to writers who abhor outlines—ME. So after the book trailer was completed I thought, ‘that’s actually not a totally terrible idea’. I am now going to be exploring it and checking to see if it has a novel in it. Here…why don’t I just load the trailer onto Youtube and link it here:

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Happy October! May your writing life take you somewhere interesting and adventurous in the coming month!

PS: Today’s question — Ever feel like you continually write the same novel…only in different ways? I would like to think that my 3 published novels are each unique, but I suppose there is a recurring theme. Are we all just creating the same work ad nauseam until we get it right? Hmmm?