Aliens and monsters make interesting employees… Ohio 3 — 1364 words, and 82,615 total

By Holly Lisle

Today brought a LOT of worldbuilding into the story — and since this is first draft, some of it may come out in the revision (when I read it for the second time, and perhaps see that I got a bit carried away).

But I loved the character interaction between my main character and the very special construction guy who added a new room to her attic. 

And I had a blast giving her little snippets and warnings about some as-yet-unmet employees she’s taking on. She never wanted employees, but one of her bigger problems in this novel (though not even remotely the biggest — lots of people and things trying to kill her is the biggest) has been making enough money to keep herself fed and to keep her inherited business running.

She’s acquired the means now to a very good source of revenue.

And some ENORMOUS liabilities. 

I got to laugh wickedly while writing, to cackle evilly, and in the end, to set into motion a time bomb that I have to set off by book five.

God, I love this job.


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A bit of fun before things get hairy again. 1502 words, 81,251 total

By Holly Lisle

Today I introduced a solution to one problem my MC is facing that is going to be the creator of many more problems.

And made myself laugh a couple of times while I did it, and enjoyed building out the new location that will be the source of these problems.

It was a delightful writing day (and starting in the wee small hours of the morning did not hurt, either). Got my three hours in and a better-than-necessary word-count and it’s only about ten-thirty AM as I write this.

I stopped at the logical stopping point so that I’ll be able to pick back up on Monday and not wonder What the hell am I supposed to do with this?

And I started today’s words out with negative numbers, because I had junk in yesterday’s words that I had to remove. Not a lot.Ohio 3 negative start 2021 06 18 at 8 29 19 AMJust 121.

But as Fridays go, this one was better than usual.

AND now I have fewer than 10,000 words to go to finish the novel. (In theory. The other two ran long, and this one probably will, too — but if I can, I’ll wrap at 90K.)

I’m going to have to rework the ending of the outline to make that work.  THAT I’ll do next Monday

Have a wonderful weekend!


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Up early, with a fun scene that flew — 1319 new words, and 79,749 total on Book 3

By Holly Lisle

I’m getting close to the end of the third book.

At the moment, things are going right for my main character… and days like that are fun to write.

However, all the rightness is leading up to things going wrong for my main character in ways she cannot yet even imagine.

I have a grin on my face typing this, because I can imagine… 

And she’s about to take on a whole horde of the most difficult employees in history. 

They are the stuff of legend — and so are their moments of … impossible-ness.

And I get watch them in action while I write them.

I’m so happy.


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Urban fantasy, employees… and the trouble I can make. 78,430 total words, and 1312 for the day

By Holly Lisle

It took the whole three hours and change, but I got my words. Met a charming not-even-remotely-human guy who is doing my MC a favor for a pretty decent price, and I’m using him and the work he’s doing for her to bring in my main character’s biggest-ever headache.

She has no clue what’s in store for her. But I do… — but either tomorrow or Friday (still have to rethink the PACT sentences for those two scenes) — she’s going to find her life changing in some incredibly inconvenient ways.

And I am already chuckling an evil chuckle and waiting with anticipation for my next writing session.

Now, though, on to all the other work for the day.


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So… today was This Ain’t Tolkein Day in my life, with delightful bad influences, 1257 words & 77,118 words total

By Holly Lisle

I hate sleeping in. Seriously. I ended up today starting late, being more than an hour behind before I even started, and I had a bunch of non-writing stuff to do today along with everything else. THAT’s still waiting for me.

However, words first.

I got 1257 of them, and oh, MAN, do I love what I got. I’m bringing some new folks into my character’s world, and they are the antithesis of characters you’d find in J.R.R. Tolkien’s world.

Which is as it should be. Much of what you learn from reading fiction both broadly and deeply is how other folks have written specific things, and why they wrote it that way, so that you can do it differently while having damned good reasons for doing it differently.

There was some light worldbuilding in today’s work, and will be a bit more in tomorrow’s.

Worldbuilding. And cookies.

And some wicked little creatures who are going to be such fun to write. I was chuckling evilly while I thought them up this morning. And am already eager for tomorrow, so that I can bring them in and start them on their path of chaos, havoc, mayhem, and fun.


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Making Money (the title of a Pratchett novel, AND what my MC did today)

By Holly Lisle

Word counts first: 1380 words, 75,861 total.

Today had a bit of research tied in, so while I’ve been writing since 7:30 am, I didn’t hit my word count until about four hours in.

But the writing went well. I had to research the earliest processes of making coins by hand, and then had to put my main character into a situation where she had to try coin-making the old-fashioned way. She’s not having fun — but that’s okay. I am.

I like the words I got, and I left myself in a good place to start again tomorrow. (Driving your main character nuts, then leaving her right in the middle of her mess is almost always a good place to quit. You’ve already established the work and the mood of the scene, and your MC going to spend the night glowering.)

So now, on to the rest of the day’s work.


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What’s in a legacy? 1264 words, and 73,586 total for Novel #3

By Holly Lisle

My MC today discovered the details of the legacy her grandmother left her — things that she should have known months earlier, when she first returned home.

With the full extent of her inheritance revealed to her, she’s also discovered that there were things she did wrong when she first returned home, and one critical mistake she made back then that is almost certainly going to come back to bite her in the butt.

She knows that in one instance, she has trusted exactly the wrong person. She just doesn’t know which person.

I got good words today, though they did not come quickly or easily today.

And I got to research a bit on the 1919 Volstead Act, and American Prohibition, and speakeasy bars.

I thoroughly enjoyed today’s writing.

But now… onward.


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What’s in Grandma’s attic? — 1286 words, and 72,321 total

By Holly Lisle

I had kind of a hard start this morning — was up way too late last night, and didn’t sleep well once I got to bed, and then woke up at pretty much my regular time (just after 7 am instead of 6:30-sh). So I would have expected to be off my game.

But I’d left myself at a good place yesterday, and picking up from that scene today went pretty well. I wrote slower than usual — seriously, I could use a nap right now. But I had a lot of fun as soon as I opened up the document and started reading through yesterday’s work and doing tiny tweaks. (And fixing typos.)

By the time I started writing new words, I was rolling, and I discovered some things about my MC’s grandmother’s attic that are very cool. And really weird.

And that tie her back to her great-grandfather, or maybe her great-great grandfather, one of whom was a smith — and who was making a lot more than horseshoes.

Fun scene, fair amount of research on cast iron and ancient coins, and still hit my words.

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Basements, attics, and the Shudder Factor – 1740 words, 71035 total

By Holly Lisle

Ohio Novel Three has shifted strongly away from my updated line-for-scene outline (as they have all done in this series), but again, what I got today still managed to build on the overall five-book plan. It’s the usual issue of strategy versus tactics — the overall book strategy holds, but on the ground, the tactics have to be changeable as old scene concept get shoved aside as what I build creates better conflicts than what I was able to imagine before I built them.

So while managing tactics today, I managed to make things scarier, and creepier, and — for me — a lot more exciting to write and a lot more fun as I get to watch the story happening.

Yesterday there was a big, big surprise in a basement. I loved this bit.

Today, a portentous discovery in an attic. (This bit creeped me out.)

And tomorrow — a whiff of the traitor who is probably also a murderer.

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The combat accountant debuts peacefully… 1811 words, and 69,295 total

By Holly Lisle

…and he introduces a weird and complicated good-news/bad-news problem for my MC.

I’ve been looking forward to writing this scene. And writing it turned out to be as much fun as I’d hoped it would be. I got to play a bit with Earth geology, and the problems of high finance and non-liquid assets (though I guess her new assets could be made liquid if it got hot enough)…

Anyway, today was a fun writing day that left me with a spiffy little twist I get to pick up on tomorrow… and now that I have my words, I still have a bunch of time left in which to catch up with all the non-writing work that builds up over the weekend.

So… ONWARD!


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