Writing Update, 7/11

Writing Update pic
How’s It Going?
Or rather, “Hey, Katherine, wasn’t some sort of anthology that you edited supposed to come out last week or something? What’s up with that?”

Reader, it’s been a rough couple of weeks…

Our Past in the Uncanny Valley is stuck in Amazon review jail. This is a good deal my fault. I don’t want to go into the whole story; I haven’t decided what the ultimate fate of the book is. This happened after I completely reformatted the manuscript in one day due to a problem with an embedded image. (These things are unrelated.)

But I’ve learned two things:

  1. Publishing public domain works through Amazon might be more work than it’s worth.
  2. I rather enjoy formatting ebooks. Maybe something should/will come of that.

So, I spent last week moping, building a palazzo in Minecraft, and deciding what to do next. I need to get back to work.

But it’s such nice place to hang out while my ms is in review jail.
(Created with Lord of the Rings Minecraft mod.)
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Wrapping June 2018

Reading

Good-ish reading month.

  • Books Finished: 5
    • Highlights: Fall of Man in Wilmslow byDavid Langercrantz and
      The Burglar Was Caught by a Skeleton
      by Jeremy Clay were both solid interesting reads.
  • Books DNFed: 4 – Yeah, I know!
  • Short Stories Read: 25
    • Highlights: “Playing with Fire” by Arthur Conan Doyle (a non-Sherlock Holmes story concerning a séance before Doyle was into spiritualism) and “Bog Girl” by Karen Russell.
  • Challenge Updates:
    • 20 Books of Summer: I’m 4/15, which is a little behind, but I did DNF one of the books on my list.
    • 2018 Nonfiction Reading Challenge: No progress on my list and I’m slightly below the 25% nonfiction  mark (24%).
    • 2018 TBR Challenge: No progress here either. I’m reading Heaven’s Ditch, which is good, but a little slow.
    • Wild West Reading Challenge: I’ve read 3/6 for this challenge, so right on track for the middle of the year!
    • Shelf Maintenance: Added three books; one I’ve already read, one was a prize, one is an October deadline ARC.

Continue reading “Wrapping June 2018”

Writing Update, 6/26

Writing Update pic
How’s It Going?
Good! I’m set to publish Our Past in the Uncanny Valley by Monday. Why Monday? July 2nd is the anniversary of its inception. The idea of an anthology of automata fiction came during a WesterCon panel on Victorian sci-fi. And below is the cover and table of contents:

“The Sand-man” by E. T. A. Hoffmann
“Automatons” by E. T. A. Hoffmann
“Maelzel’s Chess-Player” by Edgar Allan Poe
“The Man that Was Used Up” by Edgar Allan Poe
“The Artist of the Beautiful” by Nathaniel Hawthorne
“The Bell Tower” by Herman Melville
“The Automaton of Dobello” by H. D. Jenkins
“The Mullenville Mystery” by Julian Hawthorne
“In Love with an Automaton” by anonymous
“The Ablest Man in the World” by Edward Page Mitchell
“The Artificial Man: A Semi-Scientific Story” by Don Quichotte
“The Automatic Maid-of-All-Work” by M. L. Campbell
“Ely’s Automatic Housemaid” by Elizabeth W. Bellamy
“Mr. Corndropper’s Hired Man” by W. M. Stannard
“The Dancing Partner” by Jerome K. Jerome
“The Automaton Lady” by E. E. Kellett
“Moxon’s Master” by Ambrose Bierce
“Mr. Broadbent’s Information” by Henry A. Hering
“How I Won the Derby” by E. E. Kellett

About This WIP

Our Past in the Uncanny Valley is a collection of automaton stories from 1810-1910. From E. T. A. Hoffmann’s nightmarish Olimpia to the enigma of the mechanical chess-playing Turk to a plethora of humorous later-century robot maids, these stories show that our current fears about artificial intelligences aren’t new at all.

Anything Else?

I’m also working on the second Entangled Tome. Entangled Tomes will feature newly formatted versions of lost classics and curated anthologies of works from the 19th and early 20th centuries. The first is Our Past in the Uncanny Valley. The second will be a reformatting of “Mephisto” the Marvellous Automaton which is a pamphlet about a chess-playing automaton—that isn’t the Turk.

Mephisto is putting me though my paces, formatting-wise, with images and tables and all sort of things. This is the first book I’m doing from the beginning in HTML. I’m enjoying the challenge.

Writing Update, 5/23


How’s It Going?
It’s going pretty well.

All the stories for Our Past in the Uncanny Valley are formatted. The introductory matter is drafted. Acknowledgements are done.

What’s left:

  • Front matter
  • Additional back matter
  • Table of contents
  • Introductions need to be polished and proofed.
  • Ticky-tack pass on the story formatting.
  • Finalize the cover.

That’s still quite a list, but I have decided on a release date: July 2nd. That’s the year anniversary of the WesterCon panel that inspired the anthology.

About This WIP
Our Past in the Uncanny Valley is a collection of automaton stories from 1810-1910. From the E. T. A. Hoffmann’s nightmarish Olimpia to the enigma of the mechanical chess-playing Turk to the plethora of humorous later-century robot maids, these stories show that our current fears about artificial intelligences aren’t new at all.

 

Writing Update, 4/11

Our Past in the Uncanny Valley

How’s It Going?
I’ve ended up with 19 stories by 16 different authors. I finished formatting the stories on Saturday. A good thing too because by about Thursday of last week I had completely run out of formatting juice. I worked on the cover a little last week for a break.

This week: I’ve gathered biographical materials. I’ll start writing introductions of some sort tomorrow.

About This WIP
Our Past in the Uncanny Valley is a collection of automaton stories from 1810-1910. From the E. T. A. Hoffmann’s nightmarish Olimpia to the enigma of the mechanical chess-playing Turk to the plethora of humorous later-century robot maids, these stories show that our current fears about artificial intelligences aren’t new at all.

Wicked Witch, Retired

Wait, you’ve been working on this?
I miss Kelvaro and Agatha and Orther and Hanna and, yes, Horatio the mechanical duck. I’ve been brainstorming some more specific endings during my morning writings. Which got me thinking about some of the narrative’s current weaknesses. So, I’m going to work my way through The Story Toolkit and see if I can tighten up WWR‘s saggy bits.

About This WIP
Wicked Witch, Retired is the sort-of sequel to a flash story I wrote, “Wicked Witch for Hire,” which is currently available in the anthology Bounded in a Nutshell.

Writing Update, 3/28


How’s It Going?
It’s going well. I’ve done my first cull of stories I want to include in Our Past in the Uncanny Valley. I’m left with 19 stories which fall into roughly eight thematic periods. I’ve already formatted six of the stories. I’m still thinking about what I want to do for introductions. I also have a bit of supplementary reading that I’d like to do.

I’m going to do Camp NaNoWriMo in April in an effort to get at least the manuscript formatted by the end of April.

About This WIP
Our Past in the Uncanny Valley is a collection of automaton stories from 1810-1910. From the E. T. A. Hoffmann’s nightmarish Olimpia to the enigma of the mechanical chess-playing Turk and the plethora of humorous later-century robot maids, these stories show that our current fears about artificial intelligences—especially human-looking ones—aren’t that new at all.

Writing Update, 3/14


What Am I Working On?
I’ve been reading stories for the automaton anthology I’m putting together. Basically, while I watched the Olympics in February, I search through digital magazine collections and gathered a list of stories (pre-1920) involving automatons. Now, I’m reading those stories and deciding which should go in this collection and which don’t fit for whatever reason. Actually, since I’m going through chronologically, I’ve been noticing some trends in the stories, which should help me with the introduction I want to write.

Tentative title: Our Past in the Uncanny Valley.