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  • Writer's pictured. i. richardson

Update: July 2020

Updated: Jul 2, 2020

Firstly, hello. Welcome to the blog. If you're new here, buy a book or two. If you're old here, buy a book or two still. No, but seriously, hi. Welcome to the update post for July 2020. The first one! My idea here is to have one sort of place to show off upcoming novels, projects, as well as other ideas. But who even knows what that means. (Also, word totals at the bottom just for fun because I've recently started tracking those properly.)

First, I guess I have to look at my first half of 2020 and what I've done and what I've been working on:

A Cabbage Named Fred

The story of Dee and Jasmine and their adventure at a summer camp for writers and what happens beyond the summer. It was inspired by the music of Blankts, primarily. The story centres around Dee, a writer working on a novel, and Jasmine, a poet. There's also their friends: Taron, Seth, and Shelby.

I wrote this story as something lighthearted to the emotional The Colours Betwixt that came before. A Cabbage Named Fred took my almost three full years to work on and bring to a point of publishing it. It's special for that reason because at three years I knew I needed to publish something or I might never do it again.

The book took me so long to write because life hit me much harder in 2017-2019 than I expected it to with moving and working full-time and being in a relationship. All those factors took its toll on my ability to write reliably on a daily basis. Eventually, with enough days and enough 100-word rallies, I got it finished.

It's available now on Amazon and Kindle. As of now, I have not put it up on any other eBook marketplace as I have done with my other books in the past. I may change my mind on this moving forward and make it available on marketplaces like Kobo and iBooks.

The following two books are 100% new this year! Exciting!

The Ones Who Went and Never Came Back

My newest completed book! I'm very excited about this one as it's my first novel that IS NOT a YA, NA, or contemporary novel in any way!

This novel is set in 1988 in deep Montana as young woman, Danielle, sets out to escape her life and begin a summer as a firewatch. Very quickly, though, her summer derails when she finds a journal belonging to a firewatch who had gone missing two years prior. The journal outlines some creepy happenings from nearby pranksters that Danielle herself has experience and continues to experience. Her only contact is Claire, her supervisor, by means of a handheld radio.

This novel is in large parts inspired by the game Firewatch and from very creepy stories I found while scrolling Reddit late night. I was mesmerized by the idea that there are places on Earth that are just profoundly creepy by nature. Places like the deep ocean and the deep woods amaze me for that reason.

I set the novel in 1988 because I wanted it to be close enough to the modern era without being so connected. It allows for that fear of being isolated (not inspired by COVID-19, though the isolation helped). As well, I wanted the locale to be equally as distant. Montana is a large and beautiful place with mountains and forests. The perfect setting for this creepy horror / thriller.

I think this novel was the one I had the most fun writing. It allowed me to paint a large world to explore for the characters in the story as well as a way to experiment with monster and creature creation. I truly feel as though the few main "bad guys" of the story are terrifying. It includes a group of monsters known as shadows that have long fingers to peel apart skin and can morph into one larger being to help pursue prey as well as a monster known as the Brännhjort, which terrorizes Danielle throughout the novel.

This novel is also my longest work by a long shot. It's 111,000 words at the time I finished writing it. It only took me five months to write it from start to finish (big improvement from ACNF, which took three years). The isolation and quarantine form COVID-19 obviously played a part in helping me get this finished. If I were still working for three of those five months, this story would likely have taken a year, if not more, to finish.

I'm expecting to be able to get it published and ready for consumption by Fall 2020, hopefully 27 September 2020 to be exact. That's the date I'm aiming for, so mark it down!

Little Midnight

Brand new novel! Started writing this at the very end of May the day after I finished The Ones Who Went and Never Came Back. This story takes me back toward more familiar territory as it deal with a cast of young adults and their problems (read: relationship drama).

I can't say too much as the book is still in the outlined and drafting phase and I'm still working on a more pointed story for it to follow.

I can say that this book will contain some serious subject matter ranging from references and actual events in the story. These include: substance abuse, self-harm, suicide, and eating disorders.

These topics will come around in the story and I would like to make people aware so that if it could be triggering to them, they will know to avoid this novel. If you're okay with reading about these issues, then by all means, this story will be for you to enjoy. Please check the book's info page for more information about content warnings when it's closer to being completed.

The general story is this: Erica, Maggie, and Megan are friends and they form a band together. Erica meets Adam, a music manager, and they happen to hit it off. Erica also has an ex, Jonah, and they're like drugs for each other, so this complicates things with Adam.

The other thing I can say openly about the story are this: The real story happens where you're not looking. I can't even tell you where I got the inspiration for the novel because if I do, it might give away one of the later twists in the story, which would be a bummer. I want people to be able to read it for themselves first.

Little Midnight has no release date or even a window of release yet. It's roughly 50,000 words in. I've not full decided if I will make it a one-part 100k novel or a two-part, 70k-each miniseries. It might be able to work as a two-parter as I am toying with how I would split the plot naturally in case of that. I'm still excited moving forward to keep working on this novel. Hopefully, it will be ready before 2020 ends, but it's likely to be a 2021 release.

Why Start a Blog?

Why not? It's a nice place to post some long-form news about my books, my new releases coming, and a way to air out some longer thoughts about stuff, writing mostly. I like to type and Twitter just ain't cutting. If I had tweeted this entire blog post, it would have taken up a lot of tweets. Kind of not worth the trouble of clogging people's timelines with news they may or may not want.

Everybody has a blog. It's like the early 2000s again and I'm here for it. So hopefully you'll be here for it too. Primarily, this blog is about my struggles and triumphs as a writer and novelist and as I pursue other formats of writing like poetry, handbooks, a blog, etc. I wanna write it all, eventually. You can follow me on Twitter @coda_cola_ to interact with me more directly, or feel free to leave comments on blog posts. Go nuts.

Writing Total from May: 52,421 words.

Writing Total from June: 44,8544 words.

See you next time.

Have a good wander, friend.

— d.i.richardson

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