May was another month of mostly not-writing. Homeschooling took up most of my time, and when I wasn’t doing that, I was playing Animal Crossing or Elder Scrolls Online. I did manage to do some non-writing work that doesn’t amount to a word count, but it was progress on various elements of the new fantasy project I’ve been mulling over. I did a bit of world-building research, character and plot brainstorming, made progress on my fantasy conlang (constructed language), and finally purchased Scrivener to use for organizing this project.
I’m getting excited about the prospect of working on this project. I made a lot of creative decisions this month, working on the main character (scholarly archeologist!) and elements of the plot that have been a bit vague until now. Still not enough worked out that I feel comfortable writing it down yet, but we’ll get there. I did sketch out a couple of mythology things to work through some ideas, so there were some words!
Word Counts in May:
Total Words Written in March: 1,503
Total Words Written in 2020: 61,582
Plans for June:
School is finally out, so I’m hoping for a bit more time to focus on my own work while kiddo mostly plays video games and watches TV. Part of me feels guilty about the increase in kiddo’s screen-time, but we all have to figure out a way to survive somehow. Homeschooling was exhausting, demanding work that sucked all the life and energy out of me. Over the last week, I feel like I’m slowly gaining something back, though there are still days where I don’t manage to do much of anything except build Legos with kiddo and help her get through the dungeons in Legend of Zelda: The Ocarina of Time. I can’t really complain about that, though.
I’m hoping to make a little more progress this month on STARCALLER. I’m reading The Language Construction Kit by Mark Rosenfelder for my fantasy conlang, though I feel like I’ve made pretty decent progress on my own. Language is going to have a minor part to play in the story, but in an effort to make this feel like a completely different world, I wanted to build the names and language from the ground up so that it doesn’t feel derived from any real world cultures or languages. My main character doesn’t even have a name yet, because I haven’t figured out the language. I’ve been using placeholders like MAIN CHARACTER and NORTH REGION in my notes to replace later. The conlang is probably going to be the only thing I make any tangible progress on this month, but I imagine other little worldbuilding details will formulate as well. My brain is constantly spinning with ideas lately.
Writing: Like most people around the world, I got nothing done last month. I’ve transitioned to full-time homeschooling, and I don’t have the time or energy for anything else. This will be brief! Word Counts in April: Blog/Newsletter: 1452 Cartridges & Catacombs:...
Writing: I finished my book! Woohoo! Last month, I made one, final concentrated effort to finish my dang book, after taking at least six months longer (and 100,000 more words) than I expected, and I finally finished it (on March 20th, to be exact, which was the day I...
February was much busier than expected, so I didn’t get nearly as much writing done as I would have liked, only 6000 on BLOOD OF SALT, TEARS OF PEARL. I had wanted to finish the draft by the end of the month, but once again, non-profit event planning...
Chroniker City #1
Seventeen-year-old Petra Wade, self-taught clockwork engineer, wants nothing more than to become a certified member of the Guild, an impossible dream for a lowly shop girl. But when Emmerich Goss—handsome, privileged, and newly recruited into the Guild—needs help designing a new clockwork system for a top-secret automaton, it seems Petra has finally found the opportunity she’s been waiting for…
Chroniker City #1.5
Petra Wade’s older brother, Solomon, has always dreamed of being an actor. Instead, he works grueling shifts in the clockwork city’s boiler rooms to help support his large adopted family. When Le Theatre Mecanique holds an open call for their upcoming performance, he decides to audition, but the only role he is suitable to fill is that of the theater’s custodian…
Chroniker City #2
It has been six months since clockwork engineer Petra Wade destroyed an automaton designed for battle, narrowly escaping with her life. But her troubles are far from over. Her partner on the project, Emmerich Goss, has been sent away to France, and his father, Julian, is still determined that a war machine will be built. Forced to create a new device, Petra subtly sabotages the design in the hopes of delaying the war, but sabotage like this isn’t just risky: it’s treason. And with a soldier, Braith, assigned to watch her every move, it may not be long before Julian finds out what she’s done…
Brooke Johnson is an avid tea drinker, nonprofit co-founder, amateur seamstress, tabletop RPG enthusiast, and dabbling artist, in addition to all her book writing. As the jack-of-all-trades bard of the family, she adventures through life with her fiercely bearded paladin of a husband, their warrior princess daughter, a cowardly wizard of a dog, and two roguish cats that somehow rolled high enough persuasion to join the party.
They currently reside in Northwest Arkansas, and once they earn enough loot and experience, they’ll build a proper castle somewhere and defend against all manner of dragons, goblins, and whatever else dares take them on.