Wednesday, December 7, 2011

New Plans

It's so amazing. Not until I finish a first draft can I comprehend what the story is truly about, and all the elements that go into it. With book 2, I already see so much I want to add to enrich and round out the story. Also, I'm growing to love the stories and characters even more, to the point where I'm considering making each book a full novel instead of novellas.

And that's why I'm narrowing down my book list from eleven to seven. The other ideas will be melded into the novels or become short stories.

Oh, the joy of writing! And editing, and publishing. God is so good.

~S.E. Sawyer

P.S. Jael did a superb job solving the ice planet problem.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Mission Accomplished: NaNoWriMo: Veryfied!

It’s official. I uploaded my manuscript and got the congratulatory video and my “winner goodies:” a certificate and my badge:

I actually finished Book 2 around 45,000 words (whoohoo!) and started a short story spin-off, following the characters on an adventure to an ice planet. Vophsi acted very mysteriously, and I didn’t find out what he was up to until Jael did. And now I’m not sure how she’s going to resolve it. I hope she knows.

Back to book 2. It didn’t end exactly the way I wanted it to, but the editing process can take care of that. I so enjoyed the underwater adventure, a story I’ve always wanted to write. I thank God He allowed me to in the month of November, 2011.

~S.E. Sawyer

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Just Keep Writing

I named my muse Dory. This is why and what I need her to do:

Yeah, I love that scene. I always replace "swimming" with "writing." Never fails to put a smile on my face and speed in my fingers.

I believe the Lord gives us encouragement in all kinds of ways. Sometimes they come from a burst of creative energy. Sometimes in a kind comment. Sometimes from a singing fish, which is most appropriate for the under-the-sea tale I'm writing.

Total word count now stands at 42234. That's encouraging.

S.E. Sawyer

Friday, November 18, 2011

Another Rough Excerpt

Fiction Friday again, this time hosted by Joanne on her blog An Open Book. Read more great fiction there!

I shouldn't be posting such raw material, but it is NaNoWriMo season, so here you go. This scene comes late in Chapter 6, and is the heart of each LIGHT story. Hope you can enjoy through the roughness :-)

~S.E. Sawyer

Chapter 6

Wanting to seek the privacy of the sleeping quarters, Jael backed slowly away from the group as everyone engaged in conversation and opinion about the validity of Zedek’s explanation and promises. None felt comfortable at the denied access to contact the Eagle, yet Zedek didn’t seem to want to do them harm. Perhaps Trogyllium customs of bringing strangers into their midst was just different from most societies.

It was on this last murmur that Jael slipped into an empty sleeping chamber. She ignored the elegant arrangement and furnishings, the warm décor, soothing cream walls and ambient light. Three steps and she was at one of the bedsides where she knelt down and let her elbows sink into the soft mattress as she clasped her hands in front of her. She began to pray.

She never kept up with the ticking minutes of her internal clock when she was in deep prayer, but several must have passed before she lifted her head with a sigh of relief. Peace replaced the tight feeling in her gut and she knew it was time to take some proactive steps. Not aggressive, just in preparation.

Jael blinked away the dimness from having her eyes closed so long and rose to her feet. She’d known since she’d opened her eyes that she was no longer alone. She turned to find Pileser standing stock still in the doorway.

“Did you have something to report, Ms. Pileser?”

Jael read a mixture of stun and fear in Pileser’s eyes. She nodded slowly. “Yes, Commander. They sent food and Vophsi said we should all eat. But…but…” Pileser let her words falter as she glanced to the place where Jael had knelt. Jael glanced behind her and back at her officer, smiling. “I was praying, Lieutenant. That’s not against regulations.”

Pileser’s expression snapped to something more akin to anger. “We’re on a foreign planet, Commander. Suppose they saw you doing that? What if it’s reported? You could be…could be..”

“Space banned?” Speaking the words cringed Jael’s insides again but she pressed on, “Believe me, Ms. Pileser, I have a healthy fear of the Space Ban as well as a respect for regulations. But when lives are on the line, as I believe they are now, the best thing I can do for all of us is seek council from God.”

Pileser cocked her head, anger giving way to doubt. Her voice was nothing more than a whisper. “He’s not here, Commander.”

Jael looked back at the impression her elbows left on the mattress and smiled. “Yes, He is, Lieutenant. He most certainly is.”

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Go with the Flow

I'm amazed how the relationships between the team members are developing. Before I began this series, I tried to outline, do characters sketches and imagine these characters in various situations. But now things are progressing naturally in concern to loyalty, friendship and respect. It's amazing how personalities and reactions fall in place like I planned it oh so carefully.

On another note, remember I entered Almost Right in the Novel Rocket Contest? The winner was announced on the 14th...and it wasn't mine. But I did get some feedback from the judges and a compliment on the writing and flow. And it ranked in the top three!

It only takes a little encouragement to keep me going.

~S.E. Sawyer

Current NaNoWriMo Word Count: 32, 066

Friday, November 11, 2011

A Raw Excerpt from Book 2

Thought I would join in Friday Fiction hosted by Hoomi over at his Pod Tales and Ponderings blog. I don't like posting unedited work, but I do get a little crazy during NaNo, so here goes. A rough snippet from Chapter Seven. Enjoy.

Chapter Seven

When the three left with a promise to return shortly, Jael turned her attention to Chesil. But before words left her lips, he was on his feet and at the door. He put his hand to it and tried to send it through. The moving gel blocked him. He glanced over his shoulder. “We’re locked in again, Commander.”

Pileser shrugged and stood. “Of course. They can’t have rascals like you running around, poking your nose into everything.”

Chesil straightened. “It was my hand I was trying to poke, not my nose, partner.”

Pileser didn’t reply as she walked over to the transluscent wall where Jael had gone when they first entered the room. She shook her head as a school of coral fish swam by. “It’s like paradise.”

Jael looked from her to Chesil’s frown and back again. “Traps usually are.”

Pileser spun around. “You really believe we’re trapped here, don’t you?”

“Don’t you?” Chesil stood at Jael’s side now, fists on his hips. “In case you haven’t noticed, we’re weaponless and have no communication devices. We can’t even call up the others that are with us here.”

Jael waved them to silence when Pileser strode back toward them. “Enough. The truth is, we don’t know what the truth is. Until we find out, we’d better spend some time finding out some things.” She swept the room again with her gaze. She hadn’t detected any listening devices or hidden cameras but that meant little. She would just have to take a chance. She put an arm around each of her officer’s shoulders and pulled their heads to hers. “Ms. Pileser, I want you to locate their central com center. Mr. Chesil, you find out where the central power center is. Both of you be discreet but get it done.” Before she let them pull back, Jael tapped Chesil’s shoulder with two fingers. “And Chesil? Brush your teeth. Your breath smells like fish and sea turtles.”

Before Darius returned, with Pileser hanging near the gel door, Chesil poured himself another glass of green juice from a clear pitcher and refilled Jael’s glass she absently held as she observed the younger woman from the corner of her eye. Chesil’s low tone broke into her thoughts. “You know, Commander, those two could be a real help.”

Jael frown and sipped the juice. “Explain.”

“Well, I just mean, if we do get ourselves in trouble, if we fan their little spark, we could use it to get Darius on our side. If we needed to find out certain things.”

Jael faced him. “I would no more toy with Pileser like that than I would you. So knock it off.”

She moved away, not wanting to see the hurt in Chesil’s eyes at her harshness. She hadn’t meant to be so gruff. That came from her growing concern over Pileser. In essence, Pileser could be used—against them. Maybe she should order Pileser not to even speak to Darius, do whatever she had to in order to douse the flame, not fan it.

But Pileser was a grown woman and an incredible officer. Jael trusted her completely. She didn’t deserve to be treated like a teenager. Unless she started acting like one. She’d have to monitor the situation closely and time any interference right. And monitor herself and not take out frustrations on the unsuspecting Chesil.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Moving Right Along

Total word count is 16411. Much faster than book 1! I love NaNoWriMo. I'm also loving the twists and turns of book 2.

The things characters say and do often surprise me. I'm not always the one directing their every move. I learn things about them that fits the story so well I get this feeling the story has already been written by someone else. Maybe it has. My prayer is it's the Lord guiding each decision.

I guess my biggest surprise so far though, is learning Vophsi's true character. I had in mind to make him a strong antagonist, a counter part to Jael. And he is. But he's also likeable. Even Jael's starting to like him.

But all that's about to change. I'm looking forward to the next several chapters.

~S.E. Sawyer

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Mission Accomplished...For Now

Yes, I made the 5,000 word mark. In addition, I wrote a blog post, scheduled five posts with pictures on two blogs, uploaded my first eBook to Barnes and Noble, sent out review copies, oh and cooked breakfast and lunch. Updated my Facebook pages and NaNoWriMo word count, uploaded an excerpt, and posted on the forum. And now I'm here. But not for long, because I'm off to watch a movie.

Jael and her team had an even busier day. They almost died.

More adventures await us in the morning.

~S.E. Sawyer

Monday, October 31, 2011

Not Days, but Hours

The countdown begins. A mere night sleep away I'll begin my attempt at a 5,000 word kickoff to National Novel Writing Month. I worked hard last week and through the weekend, trying to tie up loose ends.

Now I'm ready. I think. Outline is waiting, including names for new characters. For Never and Always wants to be written.

But what does November really hold for my life...and the Eagle team? Questions only God and December 1st can answer.

Monday, October 17, 2011

NaNoWriMo Prep

Wrote my outline for Book 2. It's slightly longer than Book 1, and I'm hoping the draft will be also. I need 50,000 words for NaNoWriMo. But if it comes up short, I'll simply start on another novella. I have one outlined and ready to go (non LIGHT). Or I may fill in with some short stories revolving around the LIGHT team. Either way, I plan to win NaNo this year, Lord willing and the crops don't burn.

As I said on my FB status earlier today, I have so many stories to write. God must have a long life planned for me.

S.E. Sawyer

Monday, October 10, 2011

The Journey Continues

Three bits of news to share.

1. My best friend's grandmother passed away this morning. I grieve, but thank the Lord she is with Him and no longer in the pains of this world. She lived with rheumatoid arthritis for over sixty years, yet I can't recall a time when she complained. We love you, Mrs. Cuddy. See you soon!

2. I am preparing for NaNoWriMo with book 2, For Never and Always. Having some spare time (haha) I got creative and made a banner for the first time. What do you think?

3. Minutes ago, I sent off Almost Right to the Novel Rocket contest. Winners announced on November 14th. No, I'm not anxious. Yet.

S.E. Sawyer

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Mission Accomplished!

Am I really finished? That was my first thought when I typed the last sentence, because I wasn't sure what the last sentence should be. But it feels really good to finish a project of this length. I haven't done that in...well, quite a while. Up until now, I've been focused on short stories and flash fiction.

The last scene was difficult as I didn't want it to be cliche' or preachy. I think it still needs work to get it right. But as they say, you can't edit a blank page.

Oh and the final word count? 40,266. We'll see where it lands after editing. I'm thinking of entering it in the Novel Rocket contest. Deadline is the 10th. Good motivation to clean up some things before I actually begin editing in a month or so.

Thank You, Lord, for helping me get it Almost Right.

~S.E. Sawyer

Monday, September 26, 2011

The Guessing Game

Crossed the 30,000 word mark. That should have been the end. Instead, it was one of the most intense fight scenes in the book. Words went onto the screen effortlessly. I'd been looking forward to writing this scene for a long while.

And now the critical race against time begins. One character may die, but I really want them to survive. We'll see what happens in this first draft.

I estimate it'll go over 35,000 words. If it goes to 40,000 I may get to call it a novel after all.

Oh, did I mention a completely new character came out of the blue and introduced herself as the security chief? Welcome aboard, Ms. Osnapper. Behave yourself.

~S.E. Sawyer

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

In Love

At this point, I love my story. That's a good thing, right? Yes and no. If I love it too much and can't chop it up in the editing process, will it become good enough for anyone else to love?

Honestly, even if no one ever reads Almost Right, I would still write it. Why? Because it's something I would love to read. It encourages my spirit. In fact, I can't wait to read the finished version. When will that be? God knows. I feel His pleasure every time I sit down to add words to my growing manuscript.

Almost 25,000 words now.That's a lot of His pleasure.

~S.E. Sawyer

Friday, September 9, 2011


Yesterday, I only wrote about two hundred words. But I felt they were some of the best two hundred so far. The characters are coming forward to claim their true traits, finding footing that is fast becoming their own, not mine. I feel as if I've simply been given an opportunity to hear their story before anyone else.

I pray this story and all that follow it will reach in and touch hearts, and that God will use it in some way to bring others close to Him.

What other reason is there to write?

~S.E. Sawyer

Wednesday, August 31, 2011


Wrote seven hundred and eleven words this morning. Not much, but at this pace I've crept up to nearly 20,000 the last two months.

I reread my outline last night and it excited me. I can't wait to get to the end, let it rest and tear it apart in the editing process. Writers are funny, aren't they? We create something we know we'll rip back apart. But it's all part of the art process.

What got me to thinking about editing was I read the entire manuscript through last night as well. So much I love, so much I know needs to change.

Much like my life. And Jael's.

~S.E. Sawyer

Friday, August 19, 2011

Halfway There?

Just past the 15,000 word mark. According to my outline, I'm roughly halfway through the story. Whether that's accurate or not, only the story can tell. Some parts I thought would last over a thousand words and ended up only briefly mentioned. Then there are those action scenes that come from nowhere and don't want to end.

All things taken into account, I believe the story really is half finished. After that, other than a few things I know need to be fixed, I'll leave that first draft alone as I dive into Book 2.

Can't wait to see what happens with Jael and the team tomorrow.

~S.E. Sawyer

Thursday, August 4, 2011


Dramatic scenes are exciting to write. Especially when I didn’t know they were coming or exactly how they will end. However, in the back of my mind, I always wonder if the scene can stay. Does it fit in with the plot or is it just filler action?

Had that happen this morning. But with it came a new plot twist. Something I hadn’t considered before, but right now it seems perfect. A direction that could possible make the ending even more convincing. Add depth and meaning. Develop back story and a way to incorporate it.

I love the adventure known as writing.

~S.E. Sawyer

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Odds 'n Ends

I love when random bits of dialogue and scenes pop into my mind. They are usually unrelated to my current draft or any of the books I have outlined thus far. That's a little scary as it potential adds a book to the series. But really, I love that, too. Perhaps I'll eventually grow tired of living space adventures through my characters, but not in the near future.

For now, I'm filing these random strokes of genesis away. Most of them won't make it to book length. But they'll make dandy short story spin-offs to the series.

~S.E. Sawyer

Monday, July 18, 2011

The Beginning

Nearly 12,000 words written so far in the first draft of Almost Right, book 1 in my LIGHT series. I've loved meeting all the characters and getting to know them along with Jael. They're all so different with their own secrets, fears, and quirks. Some are downright cool, some make me a little sad for them and their pain.

I felt inspired to write this post when I looked at my outline one last time before going to bed. Just a few scenes until the Galactic Eagle reaches planet UNP 162. Not much time to pause for air once we land on the surface.

I'm excited.

~S.E. Sawyer