Unpack Repack

Yesterday, we got home from our trip to Belfast. We had a great time and I’ll post about it when I’m not running on up-at-5AM-jet-lag brain. Today, I must do all the laundry and then repack. Tomorrow, I’m leaving for St. Louis. My father is having surgery on Thursday, so if you’d like to send any prayers or healing thoughts his way, I’d appreciate them. :)

I’ve heard back from a couple betas on the revised version of The Queen’s Gambit and they liked the changes, so yay! I think the story is better now, but it’s always nice to know that I’m not (entirely) crazy.

This week, I’m finishing up edits on TQG based on beta feedback, then continuing to write PR2. Copy edits for Polaris Rising are supposed to land next week, so it’s busy busy around here.

If you want to keep up with me more casually, I tend to post to Twitter more often than I post here. :)

Westworld in Austin

This week is SXSW, a big tech, movie, and music conference here in Austin. We’re used to companies pulling out all the stops in an effort to impress the “influencers” attending the conference, especially during the Interactive (tech) portion that kicks off the convention.

Still, HBO managed to blow all prior efforts completely out of the water by building a replica of Sweetwater, a town from Westworld. And thanks to my husband, we were able to go check it out.

If you’re not familiar with the show, it’s about a self-contained, Wild West-style amusement park called Westworld, populated by android hosts. Guests can visit Westworld and interact with the hosts however they want without fearing retaliation. As expected, this brings out both the best and worst in people.

Welcome to SweetwaterTo replicate this experience, HBO hired something like forty actors to play the park’s hosts. All were decked out in appropriate clothing and had narrative loops that interacted with other characters and guests.

We were given cowboy hats (mine black, my husband’s white—clearly a mixup because I roll lawful good) and were warned not to touch the hosts, for obvious reasons, but otherwise, we were let loose to explore the town on our own. Continue reading “Westworld in Austin”

Voting, Edits, Belfast

First of all, if you are in Texas, today is election day for the primaries. Go vote! Even if you’ve never voted in a primary before, it’s super easy. Look up a sample ballot on your county’s site or with vote411.org. When you get to the polling place, they’ll ask if you want to vote in the Republican or Democratic primary. You can only choose one, but you don’t need to have pre-registered or anything, and the choice is only for this voting year. The polls are open until 7:00PM.

Other than voting, it’s all edits, all the time. I finished the mini-edit for Polaris Rising and now I’m working on The Queen’s Gambit. There were some issues, so it’s a fairly serious edit. Everything from chapter seven onwards is getting a major overhaul. So, for those of you planning to buy the ebook, you’ll end up with a much stronger story and really get to see how editing shapes a book.

Finally, I’m visiting Belfast soon. It’s my first visit, so if anyone has any suggestions about what I should see or do while I’m there, I would love to hear them! I’ll have a couple days free where I could travel outside the city, but something reachable by bus/train would be best because that whole driving on the other side of the road thing freaks me out. I did it in New Zealand, but I worried the whole time. :)