Day: September 1, 2017

My Novel: Father Figure (Week 9 – Friday, September 1st, 2017)

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I am heading out of town for a long weekend getaway feeling absolutely thrilled with the current state of this book. I am really excited to present Father Figure’s weekly status:

writer

Status:  Friday, September 1, 2017 – Week #9

  • Chapters 27 thru 28
    • The goal was achieved. By Monday morning, the first draft of the book was complete at 345 pages, 28 chapters and 103K words. It felt amazing to know that I had accomplished so much in so little time (9 weeks!). I shut down the laptop by mid-afternoon to give myself off from writing the rest of the day. A break was in need… at least until I began reading it Tuesday morning. :O
  • Chapters 29 thru 32
    • My first editing step was to count the pages for each chapter. I suddenly found that while chapters 6 thru 28 each held between 9 and 13 pages, there were vast differences in the page count for chapters 1 thru 5. One chapter had 32 pages while another had 28. Unacceptable! I spent the morning fixing the outline and ultimately decided to split a few chapters in half and add in more content to balance the story. It needed to hold 50% focus on each of the two primary characters. By Thursday, I drafted an additional 40 pages so that we now stand at a fully completed first draft with 385 pages, 32 chapters and 111K words. Yes, it needs to be reduced by at least ten percent before I let anyone review it during the first beta reading phase.
  • Round 1 Edit
    • I skim-read the entire novel on Friday morning to make notes on all the physical characteristics about each character and every location or setting, verifying consistency and noting any holes.

 

Next Steps: Plan for Week #10

  • Round 1 Edit – The First Draft
    • When I return after Labor Day, I will begin the re-read process. Below are the steps I plan for next week:
      • Tues / Wed – Read the entire novel from start to finish to fix any grammar or spelling issues
      • Thurs – Highlight areas that are weak, e.g. candidates to cut or re-write
      • Thurs – Update character and setting descriptions throughout whole book
      • Fri – Highlight areas where the POV or Perspective is inconsistent
  • Finalize who will be the list of the first 3 to 5 beta readers
    • I will be ready to share between 9/17 – 10/1 while I’m in North Carolina and Florida on vacation.
    • If you have time to read while I’m away to provide feedback when I return, private message me on Twitter, Facebook or jamesjcudney4@gmail.com.

 

What’s on the author’s mind?

  • The ending is no longer in debate. As I finished writing the last chapter yesterday, I stumbled upon a hidden gem I’d left in a few previous chapters that needed to be tidied up a bit. A surge of beauty formed inside my head, leading me to write a conclusion that I absolutely adore. I might even be happy enough with it that I don’t feel the need to consider an alternative ending that would enable me to write a sequel. As much as I love these characters, I think I successfully told the whole story. But we shall see once the beta readers get hold of it.
  • I seem to find myself always saying the same two lines when describing certain character actions: (1) I have this weird affinity to explain how someone is laughing or crying, or (2) I have a constant need to say when someone sits or stands. It’s a bit funny, given it happens at least twice per chapter. I will definitely need to fix this during the editing stage. I don’t think anyone cares about those two actions that much!

 

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Summary of Father Figure (only read if you’re new to the book)

  • One young girl’s need to escape the mundane life she’s grown up in and another young girl’s quest to find her father, unaware of all the circumstances they’ve both been placed in due to decisions and actions occurring nearly 20 years ago and that both women have made in the present. How well do you really know your parents? Do they truly understand you? Can you ever truly escape the past?
  • A contemporary fiction novel set in two time periods with two primary characters:
    • 1998 – Amalia Graeme, about to turn 18, attends college, leaving behind a mother with whom she had a difficult relationship. While Amalia has a boyfriend, Carter, she’s secretly attracted to an older professor, Dr. Jonah West. She begins an affair with him and realizes she must come clean to her boyfriend. After she tells the boyfriend, they have a huge fight and she leaves to find Jonah who she thinks can comfort her. Along the path, she’s encounters a stranger who will change her life.
    • 2018 – Brianna Porter, 18, who lives in NYC, is struggling with understanding who she is.  She longs to escape her surroundings and leaves for college in Pennsylvania where she begins dating one of her professors, probably looking for a father figure, as she’s never met her real father. Brianna has always accepted her mother’s story that her father was a military man with whom Molly had a one-night stand and later found herself pregnant with no way to find him. When Brianna uncovers her mother’s old journal, she learns the shocking secret that her mother never knew who the father was because it could have been more than one man. As Brianna searches for clues to find her father, she stumbles upon a few facts which could completely change the future.

 

About Me
I am a writer. I am have signed a contract for a publisher on my first book, Watching a Glass Shatter. To see more, please check out the website for this novel where you will find the first 3 chapters, character bios and sample quotes.

I am writing my second novel, Father Figure, with plans to finish and submit it to a publisher in November, 2017. As part of the process to engage with my fans and followers, I am publishing a weekly status on the progress of this second book. For a description of this book, check out the post where my friends and followers voted for this book as my second novel.

Beyond these two books, I have a number of short stories, poems and other novels in various shapes and forms. I also read A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll also find TV & Film reviews, Tags, Awards, Age/Genre/Book Reads and Author Spotlights, as well as the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge.

You can also access my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Vote in the poll and ratings. Thanks for stopping by. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.

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August Update: Monthly Wrap Up

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It’s been 1 year since I created my “This-Is-My-Truth-Now” WordPress blog and website, but I’ve only been an active blogger since February of 2017. Nonetheless, another month is complete and below is my August Wrap-up!

august

Key Metrics in August 2017

  • Site Metrics – NEW for this MONTH
    • 10,500 – Views (Grand Total of 50,929)
    • 3,804 – Visitors (Grand Total of 14,890)
    • 296 – Followers (Grand Total of 2501*)
    • 4,922 – Likes (Grand Total of 25,001)
    • 2,673 – Comments (Grand Total of 9,200)
    • 80  – Posts (average of 2.75 per day, Grand Total of 833)

 

*** August 2017 was not as popular as July 2017, but only by a little bit. Oh well! ***

Books Read in August 2017

In the month of August, I only read 3 books. I planned to read more, but since I started writing my second novel, I haven’t had as much time to read. I also finally managed to get above the 80% mark on NetGalley, so I think I’m on a good upswing. Click the image to access my book review.

hidingkdfsdsdbear

365 Daily Challenge

Characteristics – Click Here

  • Yield (142)
  • Jumper (143)
  • Name (144)
  • Void (145)
  • Synergy (146)
  • Teenage Jobs (147)
  • Woof(148)
  • Brevity (149)
  • Surprised (150)
  • Vocal (151)
  • Matchmaker (152)
  • Routine (153)
  • College Jobs (154)
  • Dogmatic (155)
  • Published (156)
  • Busy (157)
  • Sleepy (158)
  • Kaleidoscope (159)
  • Beach (160)
  • Corporate Jobs (161)
  • Watchdog (162)
  • Inventory (163)
  • Work (164)
  • Push (165)
  • Comet (166)
  • Destiny (167)
  • Technology Jobs (168)
  • Doghouse (169)
  • Feedback (170)
  • Blank (171)
  • Me (172)

Book Bucket List

I continued the book bucket list project where I will keep a running list of 12 books that I must read before I die. Each of the 12 books is assigned a month when I will read it and post a review. Once completed, I’ll cross it off the list and add a new book for the next month:

  • Book Bucket List
    • Reading “The Art of Hiding” by Amanda Prowse — August 2017
    • Selected “Six of Crows” by Leigh Bardugo — September 2017
    • Added “Carnegie’s Maid” by “Marie Benedict

Tags & Awards

  • I was nominated for 28 award and tags, but I’ve been so focused on writing Father Figure, they are all sitting in a draft post. I hope to get to them soon. I appreciate everyone tagging me!

Film / TV Show Reviews

  • I did nothing… tags and awards took up all my time!

Genre / Author / Series Spotlight

I create an author page, list all the books or series they’ve written, link my reviews and provide a summary and overview of my experiences with the books.

  • I did nothing… tags and awards took up all my time!

What Age Do I Read This Book?

I created a new series to recommend by genre, what are the best books to read by age, covering a range of 12 years for each post.

  • I did nothing… tags and awards took up all my time!

Did I meet my August goals?

  • I set my August goals during the July month-end update. Let’s see how I did:
Goal Plan Actual Comment
New books read 8  3  Busy Writing
Father Figure 4  4  On target
Tags / Awards 12  0  Busy Writing
Film & TV reviews 2  0  Busy Writing
Author Spotlights & Age / Genre Reads 4  0  Busy Writing
Watching a Glass Shatter 4  4  On target
365 Daily Challenges 31  31 On target
  • Thank you for reading and commenting. I am really enjoying interacting with everyone. Please feel free to suggest any changes you’d like to see or for me to consider.

September 2017 Goals

  • 8 – New books read
  • 4 – General Blogs (author spotlight, summary, age/genre, tag or award)
  • 4 – “Father Figure” Posts
  • 4 – “Watching Glass Shatter” Posts
  • 30 – 365 Daily Challenges

Note: I’m on vacation 9/17 thru 10/1, so there will be a lot less posts. Sorry!

 

About Me

I’m Jay and I live in NYC. By profession, I work in technology. By passion, I work in writing. Once you hit my site “ThisIsMyTruthNow” at https://thisismytruthnow.com, you can join the fun and see my blog and various site content. You’ll find book reviews, published and in-progress fiction, TV/Film reviews, favorite vacation spots and my own version of the “365 Daily Challenge.” Since March 13, 2017, I’ve posted a characteristic either I currently embody or one I’d like to embody in the future. 365 days of reflection to discover who I am and what I want out of life… see how you compare! Each month, I will post a summary of a trip I’ve taken somewhere in the world. I’ll cover the transportation, hotel, restaurants, activities, who, what, when, where and why… and let you decide for yourself if it’s a trip worth taking. Feel free to like, rate, comment or take the poll for each post. Tell me what you think. Note: All content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.

365 Challenge: Day 173 – Rapid

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Rapid: happening in a short time or at a fast pace

pid

Sometimes life happens all around us, quickly moving along without you realizing it’s passing by. I reminded myself all week long that I would be away for a few days on the upcoming weekend, but did I pre-draft any posts that I could edit and release each day? No… too much going on to remember everything I had wanted to accomplish by today. When I awoke this morning, I realized that I leave on a flight at 8am tomorrow, which means I need to write at least four posts today to keep the 365 Daily Challenge humming along. I’ve got Saturday thru Monday planned in my head, so really, I just need to get through today’s concept. The word ‘rapid’ felt appropriate, given how things have been proceeding around me in the last month. And in the spirit of being rapid, a lovely rapid-fire shout out to all the things this week going on around me…

  1. Finished writing the first draft of ‘Father Figure – nearly 380 pages – more on that later in its own separate post, assuming I can find time! 9 weeks went by incredibly quickly.
  2. My Goodreads author page went up and I had to feverishly draft a bio. You can see it at: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/17128817.James_J_Cudney_IV
  3. The weekend trip to visit family. Leave early tomorrow morning, come home Tuesday afternoon. My response time on WordPress may be slower while I’m away. But I am looking forward to seeing family and stepping away from all these pesky deliverables on my to-do list. Never ends!
  4. A bug that wandered into the apartment last night. It was green and about two inches in length. Not a grasshopper or praying mantis. It flew all over the place. Ryder ignored it. I couldn’t catch it. Finally, this morning, it landed on the floor. I scooped it up, yelled at it, then threw it outside. Told it to counts its blessings I didn’t kill it. Mean, I know. But it was torture knowing it lurked in my home last night, somewhere in hiding, waiting to pounce on me.
  5. The migraine that stole 4 hours from me last night. Not nice. But at least it didn’t stick around as long as the bug. I’m grateful for some things.
  6. The end of hot weather? I hope. We’re in the 60s today here in NYC. Go away summer! Bring on the autumn weather ASAP. I need a pumpkin.
  7. Help to those in the Houston areas — I hope it is as rapid as possible to get them all they need. It will take years to help the city and all its inhabitants, and even then, it won’t be the same anymore. Much love to them all.
  8. To finding a few minutes today to ‘stop and smell the roses’ amidst the chaos we sometimes encounter throughout the day. It’ll make the day so much easier.
  9. Ryder turns 10-years old on September 3rd. I am a bit shocked at how an entire decade has gone by since this little guy came into my life. I adore him more than I can even begin to explain in a single post. And I can only hope he enjoys the birthday present he’ll have while we were away. I feel awful being gone, but this was the best timing for everyone. We’ll celebrate it when we are home on Tuesday with his favorite meal. Rapid forgiveness on this one, please.
  10. This post. I need to write a few more this morning, so today’s is a whole new sort of rapid! Hopefully it still has a bit of humor and quality. And if not, everyone has a bit of a slow day, even when the 365 Daily Challenge word is rapid. Please forgive me… and just take a moment to laugh at the poor guy below.

Couldn’t resist including this one today!

 

How about you? What’s occurring too rapidly in your life? What’s not going quickly enough? Anyone going on fun trips soon? I’m touring North Carolina for 10 days in September. Any recommendations on where to stop or where to avoid? It’s share time!

 

About Me & the “365 Daily Challenge”

I’m Jay and I live in NYC. By profession, I work in technology. By passion, I work in writing. I’ve always been a reader. And now I’m a daily blogger. I decided to start my own version of the “365 Daily Challenge” where since March 13, 2017, I’ve posted a characteristic either I currently embody or one I’d like to embody in the future. 365 days of reflection to discover who I am and what I want out of life.

The goal: Knowledge. Acceptance. Understanding. Optimization. Happiness. Help. For myself. For others. And if all else fails, humor. When I’m finished in one year, I hope to have more answers about the future and what I will do with the remainder of my life. All aspects to be considered. It’s not just about a career, hobbies, residence, activities, efforts, et al. It’s meant to be a comprehensive study and reflection from an ordinary man. Not a doctor. Not a therapist. Not a friend. Not an encyclopedia full of prior research. Just pure thought, a blogged journal with true honesty.

Join the fun and read a new post each day, or check out my book reviews, TV/Film reviews or favorite vacation spots. And feel free to like, rate, comment or take the poll for each post. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.