Back in the groove

I’m back in the groove

Well, at least sort of. Part way.

Recently, I spent some time outside at night taking astrophotographs. They didn’t turn out as well as I’d have liked, but the point is I spent over half an hour outside playing with settings and shooting three astronomical items: Orion, the Pleiades, and the V asterism in Taurus. In each case the constellation or asterism was identifiable, but I just wasn’t happy with the photos themselves. I can and have done better. Best of all, I really enjoyed the activity. It felt great to get back out, set up the camera, and start playing with it. I had a certain picture from Astronomy Picture of the Day that I was attempting to imitate to some extent.  While the imitate part of it was easy enough, it was also interesting to see that astrophotographer’s listed focal length had a different FOV (field of view) compared to my lens set at the same focal length. That’s something I’m going to have to play around with, and I already have some idea why I got the different FOV.

I just completed the first real draft of the latest Pa’adhe short story. The story is done, I’ve made all the changes I want to words, phrases, and of course all the typos I could find. Now it’s being sent to the first of my Alphas for the first review. After getting that back, I’ll be making tweaks and sending it out to the rest of the Alphas.

Once I took some of the pre-Alpha feedback to heart and let it guide me, it really turned the story around. I’m pleased with it now, and I’m also surprised at how simple it was to resolve the frustration I’d been experiencing with this story. All I had to do was go to a certain part, start writing there, and after the initial forced start it just flowed. Of course I had to tweak the ending a little to match some of the stuff that has been added and the slight, oh so very slight, change in the story arc itself. I think it works and I’ll be finding out shortly from the Alpha readers.

I learned some important things, too, with this short story. The main thing I’ve learned is that even if I have the main part of the story and the ending and it flows but the story itself seems incomplete or just not working, there’s a reason for that feeling. It’s your gut telling you the story is missing something and needs that part to be whole. You may not realize what it is that’s missing, you might struggle with the story trying to figure out why you don’t like it, why it’s not working for you. That’s when you have to do one of two things: put it aside for a while and return to it fresh OR get one of your alphas to pre-alpha the story. The problem is, you’ve gotten so lost in the forest for the trees that you’re not seeing the pathways or the forest any more.

Now I’m rubbing my hands in delight. I’m eager to get on to the next short story of the Pa’adhe, which I started some time back when I was having trouble with the current one. It’s got fighting action. That’s going to be fun!

But before I start into that, I think I’m going to polish up a little another ultra-short story of mine and post it to this blog for your reading pleasure.

But before even that…I’m going to get this latest Pa’adhe story polished up and out there for my readers.

Just a little more patience, dear readers. It’s coming!!

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