Barb Caffrey's Blog

Writing the Elfyverse . . . and beyond

Posts Tagged ‘general updates

An Overall Update (Mostly About “Changing Faces”)

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Folks, every so often, I like to give you an update as to what I’m doing and how well (or poorly) I’m doing it.

And as I’ve had numerous questions as to when CHANGING FACES will come out, I figured I’d best get something up to let you know what’s going on there.

As most of you know, CHANGING FACES was put into the Twilight Times Books Summer catalogue, so the assumption is that I will be able to get it out — at least in e-book — before September 20, 2016 (the very tail-end of summer). Progress has been slow, but steady…overall, I think I will get CF out by September 20, providing my publisher likes my final version, but it’s going to continue to take much thought, time, and energy in order to do this.

(Yes, that’s the main reason why I haven’t blogged much, and it’s definitely the major reason as to why I haven’t written a book review for Shiny Book Review in many months. But I digress.)

As for everything else…my living situation is exactly the same. (I call it “limbo.”) I still can’t talk much about it because much of this particular story is not mine to tell…but I’m looking into all options, in order to avoid imminent distress.

(Yes, this same situation has been going on for four solid months. No, it’s not easy for me to deal with. Yes, I wish I had better options than the ones currently on the table, or I’d have found a way out of this mess. But again, I digress.)

And I’ve edited another book this month, which I hope to tell you about in a few weeks.

As for my own, personal projects — I hope to have an independent Elfyverse novella, “Trouble with Elfs,” out in a couple of weeks. (I’ll talk more about that later.) I have been stalled out on the next Joey Maverick novella, tentatively titled “On Bubastis,” for over a year, but it’s still in the pipeline. I have started outlining a prequel novel, THE QUEST FOR COLUMBA, in my late husband Michael B. Caffrey’s Columba Chronicles universe, but with everything else on my plate, it may not be ready until December — and that’s only if some of the other issues on the table resolve by then.

So, I continue to do the best I can. That, ultimately, is all I can do.

Anyway, blogs will probably continue to be slow, though I do have a couple of guest writers coming over in September to keep y’all amused. And I do hope to get a few book reviews done soon…but CHANGING FACES remains the priority.

Hope you all are doing well, and would enjoy hearing what you and yours are up to, if you feel like discussing it.

Written by Barb Caffrey

August 24, 2016 at 6:37 pm

Periodic State of the Elfyverse, January 2016 Edition

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Folks, I haven’t done this in a while, but I figured I’d give you a “state of the Elfyverse,” which has grown to encompass all my writing and editing in addition to the ELFY saga.

Perhaps I’d best start there, though, as that makes sense.

The next book in the Elfyverse is actually going to be three books. For years, I’ve called it AN ELFY ABROAD, because it’s a pun (Bruno’s the Elfy, and Sarah’s the “broad”) as well as being absolutely true. Bruno is a stranger in a strange land, and he’s going to visit the Troll Realm, he’s going back to the Elfy Realm as a power (however uneasy he may be over it), and he and Sarah have many more adventures in the Human Realm (our Earth).

That much, I am positive about.

Everything else, however, is up for debate, as the book/trilogy is in the midst of a revision. But it is in progress, and I hope it’ll be along in due course.

As for other stories in progress…

  • There will be a fourth story in the Darkover universe if I have anything to say about it, featuring my judge character Fiona n’ha Gorsali as a young woman just taking up her judicial duties for the first time.
  • I’m plotting out Cat’s journey in “The Quest for Columba,” a novella set in my husband’s alternate history/fantasy universe from Cat the shapeshifter’s perspective. (I figured Cat has a great deal to tell me, and he’s probably been saving up the story for a long time. Why should his wife, Columba, get all the fun?)
  • There is an Elfyverse prequel in the works called KEISHA’S VOW, which is about one-third completed. I hope to take that up after I’m done with “The Quest for Columba.”
  • There is a sequel in the works to my short story “Baseball, Werewolves, and Me,” featuring my worldly-wise psychic Arletta James and her werewolf husband, Fergus.
  • And, finally…I’m getting closer to turning CHANGING FACES in to my publisher, but that’s still a few weeks away.

Now, why is all of this in development at roughly the same time?

Partly, it’s because two of the stories were ongoing at the time of Michael’s death in 2004 and I have refused to give them up.

Partly, it’s because I knew there was more to Cat’s story when trying to add touches to Michael’s second Columba story, “Columba and the Crossing,” and that turned into a much more lengthy endeavor. (Right now, that story will be published after I finish “The Quest for Columba.”)

And partly, it’s because I have more stories than even this — but those are the ones people know about, so I wanted to give some sort of update publicly even if publication for any or all of them is a while yet (except for CHANGING FACES, which will be out this year for sure).

So, in between finishing up an extensive edit and working on a few other edits besides, I’m working on my stories, little by little.

Well, that, and planning some book reviews, and writing a few blogs now and again, and trying to help my fellow writers and editors…

And playing my instruments, and writing a piece every great once in a while…

and talking with my friends and family, grabbing a bite to eat and some showers here and there, and sleep, glorious sleep…

You get the idea.

What are you up to, and how is your New Year going thus far?

Written by Barb Caffrey

January 9, 2016 at 10:11 pm

Posted in Editing, Elfy, Elfyverse, Writing

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A Writer’s Work Is Never Done…

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It’s Friday, folks. And as such, I figured I’d give you all an update as to what, exactly, I’ve been doing this past week.

Most of the week was taken up with a major editing project, but I also found time to check over the ARC of A LITTLE ELFY IN BIG TROUBLE, do some work on CHANGING FACES, and of course write my blog complaining about the Milwaukee Brewers trade of Francisco Rodriguez to the Detroit Tigers for a single-A infield prospect.

I managed to get a great deal of work done, this past week. But of course there’s still more to be done — A LITTLE ELFY IN BIG TROUBLE should be out next week, just before Thanksgiving, and I have to read over the file one, final time just to make sure I have dotted my i’s and crossed all my t’s…or at least made sure I didn’t misspell Bruno’s name.

When I get this busy, sometimes it’s hard to remember which end is up. I’ve been juggling three major projects — the edit for someone else, A LITTLE ELFY ON BIG TROUBLE, and CHANGING FACES. While I’m good at prioritizing, and I am reasonably good at remembering just where I’ve left off at any given project, I only can do so much.

That said, during the past week I also worked a little bit on two other projects — because three major projects obviously aren’t enough, right? (Must. Have. More.)

Anyway, the major edit has been turned in. A LITTLE ELFY IN BIG TROUBLE is wrapping up, and will be out — thankfully, as I know many people have been waiting for it and have asked repeatedly why it’s not out yet. (Patience, my young friends. And old ones, too — ’cause I don’t want to leave anyone out.) And I get closer to finishing my final edit/rewrite of CHANGING FACES every time I work on it…the hope there is, I should be done in time for a Valentine’s Day launch.

Finally, two of my paranormal romance stories are included in the forthcoming Exquisite Quills Holiday Anthology, this time to be offered via Amazon (and priced at ninety-nine cents USD). I’ll try to get you links when the anthology goes live…and I hope you will enjoy them.

Written by Barb Caffrey

November 20, 2015 at 11:37 am

Two Stories Written, and Away…

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Folks, it wasn’t easy, but I managed to complete a brand-new story in the course of a week (it fought me hard, too, let me tell you), and I sent it off to one market earlier this evening.

I also revised an existing story, pulling out two thousand words, then somehow adding in two thousand different words to bring the story to exactly where it was in the beginning, word-count wise (though not, perhaps, in content). And sent it off to a different market.

Both are places where I cannot guarantee a sale, as they’re both for contests. As such, I can’t tell you much about either story, except that one is fantasy, and the other is military science fiction. (If I tell you anything more, I risk immediate disqualification. After working so hard on these stories, that won’t do.)

Other than that, I’ve watched baseball (Sunday’s game was a stinker between the Milwaukee Brewers and the Colorado Rockies, but the rest of the week was all right), I’ve edited up a storm, and I’ve desultorily read a Edwardian romance that I may talk about over at Shiny Book Review one of these years.

As for plans for this week? Well, after I catch up on my sleep, I’ll go back to the editing (you have to expect that, knowing me), I’ll try to figure out if one of the two stories I just finished has anything more to say (it feels like a novel, truly) and maybe work a tad on that, I’ll keep an eye on the Brewers (they’re playing the Blue Jays in a short, two-day day baseball series — and they’re going to celebrate independence today, as it’s Canada Day!) and I sincerely hope to be able to review Aaron Lazar’s mystery SPIRIT ME AWAY later this week. (Possibly his LADY BLUES as well. But don’t quote me.)

Oh, I also have a rehearsal for the Racine Concert Band, will be playing the Fourth of July Parade as per usual, and a concert on Sunday as we start our summer series out at the Racine Zoo. (Please come; it’s free.) Show starts at 7:30 p.m., if you’re interested.

I also will be partaking in another blog hop, this time at the behest of Dina von Lowenkraft (author of DRAGON FIRE), on Thursday. It’s called the “meet my character” blog hop (look here to see what she made of it; it’s about her main character, Rakan), so my take on this will obviously be all about Bruno the Elfy, star of AN ELFY ON THE LOOSE.

So watch this space…

Written by Barb Caffrey

July 1, 2014 at 3:50 am

Posted in Writing

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A Friday Free-For-All

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Folks, it’s Friday. So I figured I’d write a quick blog and let you all know what I’m doing, plus give you some quick updates regarding recent blog subjects.

First, the main reason I’ve been so quiet this week is that I’m in the process of working on two stories (for submission on June 30) and also finishing up a major editing project. When I’m close to a deadline for either my editing or writing, I tend not to say much until the project is completed or the story/stories are written.

But there are a number of very odd things going on at the moment, so I figured I’d do my best to catch up.

Ready?

  • What is going on with MH 370? No one has any idea where this plane is, what happened to it, where the crew are, and whether or not any of them will ever be found. It is the strangest story in aviation history because in this day and age, we do have air traffic controllers in nearly every developed country (and most undeveloped countries, too), we have pilots galore and flight simulators and computers and all different sorts of technological advances to help us out . . . yet no one has any idea where this plane is.
  • The young twelve-year-old girl who was nearly killed by the two other girls in the “Slenderman” case has recovered. She recently posted a “thank you” message (with her face carefully not being shown), which was widely covered . . . I’m glad she’s been able to recover, but I still don’t know what’ll happen to the two girls who tried to kill her. Their mental state must be evaluated; if they are mentally ill, they must get treatment. (And if they are sociopathic, my goodness — will treatment help? But I’d still try to treat them, even so, just to see if redemption is possible.)
  • The Milwaukee Brewers, 2014 edition, continue to look like a playoff team. (That is all.)
  • The ending to the TV show DROP DEAD DIVA underwhelmed, I’m sorry to say. The idea that Jane’s Guardian Angel, Paul, would just take over for Grayson (now in Ian’s body) did not work for me. That Grayson/Ian would be content to be a “paralegal” or legal assistant for Jane also didn’t work, though at least it kept him nearby. And while I fully agree that the substance of love matters far more than any outward form (that is, the soul itself matters far more than the body) — it was one of the main themes of DROP DEAD DIVA from the beginning — I would’ve rather seen Grayson and Jane be together as high-powered lawyers. (I still don’t understand why Grayson was killed off and brought back in a different actor’s body as Ian. Though I approved of the second actor’s approach, mind you — he at least made it plausible this unlikely scenario could happen.)
  • Sticking with DROP DEAD DIVA, I still don’t buy that Fred the Angel would somehow lose his status for helping Grayson and Jane. Fred didn’t lose any status when the old Jane (now Brittany) came back, after all . . . that smacked to me of very sloppy writing.
  • And finally, again on the subject of DROP DEAD DIVA, why did Stacey have to give birth and miss her own wedding to Owen? Why not let the poor girl get married, then have her twins?

Anyway, that’s most of what has been going through my mind this week, but because I haven’t had enough time to turn around, I wasn’t able to get to blogging until now. (And to do this, I’m taking time out of my sleep-cycle.)

Figure I’ll try to review a book or two on Saturday over at Shiny Book Review — author Aaron Paul Lazar’s mysteries are next up in the queue — but with everything going on, it may not happen.

And I do owe you all a better Milwaukee Brewers post, plus my thoughts on the Milwaukee Bucks’ draft choices (I was expecting them to trade Ersan Ilyasova, but what do I know?), and goodness knows what else . . . but it’ll have to wait until the stories are done and in on Monday.

High Heat, Humidity in WI Weighs Me Down

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Folks, I have many topics to discuss (including figure skater Johnny Weir’s great appearance on Keith Olbermann’s new show on ESPN2 Monday night), but the high heat and humidity that Wisconsin has been visited with over the last few days has been difficult for me to bear.

Worse yet, we’ve had next to no rain for a week.  This is really bad, because without rain washing the pollution out of the air, the air quality gets that much worse — whether the official indicators actually pick it up or not.

I have asthma, which acts up more under these conditions.  (The temperature was 97 F on Tuesday.  Yikes.)  So maybe that’s why I’ve not been able to write much, on or off my blog, in several days . . . instead, I’ve spent my time going over my novel, ELFY, and editing other people’s manuscripts.  (Except for Tuesday, where I spent the whole day resting.  97 is just too hot to be borne.  Seriously.)

Anyway, I keep telling myself that even on days like these — where I struggle to breathe and think — it’s important to hold a positive thought.  I may have to take some time out for ill health now and again.  But if I keep trying, eventually I will succeed.

And I’ve worked far too long, and far too hard, to allow this little setback to keep me away from my computer for too long.  (Guaranteed.)

Once this weather gets a little easier for me to deal with, I plan on talking more about Weir’s important and interesting talk with Olbermann regarding the 2014 Sochi Olympics and several other subjects, including a look at the Milwaukee Brewers’ September call-ups (and other assorted rookies).  Plus, I still have a romance to review at Shiny Book Review (THE LADY MOST WILLING . . . ) — which is why I plan to take up the gauntlet again in a few days.

But for now, the sensible path is to rest.  So I will do that, and hope to discuss more in a few days once the insanely hot weather is supposed to finally work its way out of here.

Written by Barb Caffrey

September 11, 2013 at 1:04 am