marthawells: (Manly Hug)
[personal profile] marthawells
I haven't been posting much here, partly because I've been traveling a lot and struggling a bit to keep up with work. Looking over what I've done, I did get about the same amount of writing done this year as I normally do, but not nearly as much of it is finished and ready to go.


A big chunk of what I wrote this year was Magic: the Gathering: Return to Dominaria which sounded like it would be a quick series of 4000 word short stories and became a fun-filled somewhat exhausting 68635 word extravaganza. It took up basically all my writing time between December through the beginning of April, with the last story being put to bed around April 23. But it was an extremely neat world to play in and a great experience. (If you want to read it, it's here:

The follow-up stories, by Kate Elliott, Cassandra Khaw, and Nicky Drayden are here:

After that I started working on the upcoming Murderbot novel, which doesn't have a title yet. The first Murderbot novella, All Systems Red, was written pretty quickly for me, over the course of a month, but the other three have each taken about two to three months each, with each following the pattern that I'd write about 15 to 20,000 words, then cut back to 5000 and start from there. And then do that again and do that again, until the end. I was hoping that didn't happen with the novel, but that is sure happening. So for most of this year, just imagine me and the Murderbot novel, locked in combat, repeatedly punching each other in the head.

Despite this I did manage to get a short written each month for the Books of the Raksura patreon Last month is the first time I flubbed that, and I'm hoping to make it up by the end of this year.

I also wrote a short 1000 word or so Murderbot story which is going to appear in a magazine in January, though I can't say which one yet because it hasn't been announced. (Believe me, I will mention it when it comes out.) And I wrote a 9400 or so word SF story for an anthology that kind of happened at the last minute because another writer had to drop out. I've done the revision for that and sent it in and I'm not sure yet if they need any more work on it. I don't think it's been announced yet either.

If I worked on anything else I honestly can't remember it right now.


The last three Murderbot Diaries stories were published: Artificial Condition in May, Rogue Protocol in August, and Exit Strategy in October. All were novellas, defined as stories between 30,000 and 40,000 words, released by Publishing, which specializes in novellas.

Travel and other stuff

The thing with All Systems Red is that it did really well, especially for a novella. Like, real well. Like "holy shit" well. Like New York Times Bestseller List for audio well (with Kevin R. Free performing the narration) and USA Today Bestseller List.

Because of this I got to go to the American Library Association conference for the first time, which is huge and fills up the whole New Orleans convention center and was awesome, even though I missed getting to see the main speakers (Michele Obama and Viola Davis). All Systems Red was also one of ten books to receive an Alex Award, which is for books written for adults that appeal to young adults, and is administered by YALSA.

I also got to go to the Texas Book Festival for the first time since the early 2000s when The Death of the Necromancer came out.

All Systems Red was nominated for the Philip K. Dick Award.

I got to be writers workshop guest of honor at FenCon. And I got interviewed by Locus Magazine.

I got diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis, with a side order of osteo arthritis, so I'll be on medication the rest of my life. Without the medication, I'm in a lot of pain and would be extremely creaky and slow. With it, I'm in pretty good shape, though occasionally a joint will just stop working right for no apparent reason.

I won a Nebula Award, a Locus Award, and a Hugo Award. I met a Sesame Street muppeteer and got my picture taken with a muppet. I got to go to George R.R. Martin's Hugo Losers Party where there were giant dancing robots.

And next year I'm going to be one of the guests of honor at Capclave in Maryland, in October 2019:

So it's been a pretty wild ride this year.

Date: 2018-11-23 08:13 pm (UTC)
destina: cherry blossoms (Default)
From: [personal profile] destina
Wild but awesome. Except for the arthritis. <3

Date: 2018-11-23 10:02 pm (UTC)
esteefee: (big_gun)
From: [personal profile] esteefee
A good year, buddy... although rheumatoid arthritis sounds scary. I hope the diagnosis and medication help. Happy holidays!

Date: 2018-11-23 10:16 pm (UTC)
oracne: turtle (Default)
From: [personal profile] oracne
I am very excited to see you at CapClave!!!

Date: 2018-11-23 10:35 pm (UTC)
anne: (Default)
From: [personal profile] anne
I've been cackling gleefully ever since Murderbot hit it big (and the other day, I got to tell somebody that Razor's Edge exists, which made us both very happy). I'm sorry about the arthritis...

Date: 2018-11-24 07:24 am (UTC)
estara: (Default)
From: [personal profile] estara
May you be able to manage your health well (I've been on medication for 13 years now, so it can be doable). Other than that I can only say that I think all the honours were way overdue for you. Good to see the rest of the world catch up :D

Date: 2018-11-25 05:20 am (UTC)
nenya_kanadka: let me fall into the dream of the astronaut (@ astronaut)
From: [personal profile] nenya_kanadka
Helluva year! Glad it was mostly good. Definitely feel the awards are finally catching up with the quality of your work...and hope you get to meet more cool robots. (Shame about missing Michelle Obama, though.)

just imagine me and the Murderbot novel, locked in combat, repeatedly punching each other in the head

...and you survived?? :P

I had to laugh at the part about a few short stories turning into nearly 70k. Ah yes. That feeling!

I hope the diagnosis and meds help, and that Murderbot consents to be appropriately documented before beating you up much further. ❤❤❤

(And it was awesome to meet you briefly at WorldCon!)

Date: 2018-11-28 01:13 pm (UTC)
nenya_kanadka: blue tentacle monster with a heart above head (@ Lemon the Tentacle Monster)
From: [personal profile] nenya_kanadka
That would be really cool! 😊😊😊

Date: 2018-11-28 07:25 am (UTC)
From: [personal profile] kaya0010
sorry about the arthritis but glad that you had such an eventful year!

I was wondering, would the murderbot novellas ever be available together in an omnibus volume? Love you work, thanks for writing such amazing stories!

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