I’m doing these “What I’m working on” -posts partly to keep myself accountable, partly to see which projects are cool to people who aren’t me and mostly to at least stop to think about the priorities of various and sundry projects I’m working on. This one is a special edition because this month I’m taking part in Clarion West’s Write-a-thon. It runs from June 22nd to August 2nd and this edition of What I’m working on is what I’m doing to get to my goal of 42,000 words in the duration.

What’s Clarion West?

Clarion West (just like its mothership Clarion Workshop) is essentially higher education for speculative fiction authors condensed into six weeks of madness inducing workshop with masters of the trade. Former teachers include George R.R. Martin, Neil Gaiman, Ellen Datlow and John Scalzi. Each teacher gets a week to impart their wisdom to the students and each week each student is supposed to turn in a new short story and critique the stories of other students. Sounds fun, yes? So far everyone I’ve met who has been a student has told me that the experience, after they stopped being completely brain-fried, has transformed their writing onto a higher level. And seeing as these students include the brilliant Tobias Buckell and Karin Tidbeck, I’m inclined to believe them.

Why Write-a-thon?

Both incarnations of Clarion operate as non-profit organizations and thus are in constant need of money. The students live together under the same roof on campus for the duration, apparently sometimes they also get fed, the instructors need accommodations and probably get paid something for their efforts. Not to mention that the foundation needs to function and they probably also employ people to run it as well as server space and maintenance and all the things that any organization has to do. Which is why every year the Foundation organizes a Write-a-thon to collect donations so they can keep the price of tuition as low as possible for the students. And since I hope to be one of the students in the future, I’m asking you to consider donating for the cause by supporting my efforts or choosing one of the many other amazing writers participating to support.

What I’m working on

Unnamed Space Pirates novel/series: World-building and outlining. Space opera about two sisters and their crew who steal the wrong thing and end up running for their lives. This is turning out much more fun than I initially imagined partly because researching historical pirates is absolutely a valid part of research that is giving me loads of ideas and world-building space opera is generally just loads of fun.

Unnamed Superheroes in the Belle Epoque novel: World-building/”what would be cool?”. Historical science fiction story about superheroes in the Paris of 1891. Featuring at least a Moulin Rouge headliner with dragonfly wings.

Wiped: Outlined and in the process of writing. A science fiction short story about a woman who had her memory cleaned following her son’s death and what happens when she finds a picture of herself with him taped to her door.

Lonely Souls: First draft finished, making revision notes for the second draft. Urban fantasy of a half-human succubus trying to make a life in a nearly-human world.

Lastly I want to give a huge thank you and shout out to my friend Allan Halme, who has already pledged to support my Write-a-thon as well as anyone else who has supported many of the other worthy writers participating. You are pure magnificence!