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Attack of the Mutant Miners – Author Notes

Attack of the Mutant Miners – Author Notes

Thank you for reading all the way to the end! I hope you enjoyed the third installment of The SPOOK & GOON Space Adventures series.

After writing three books in a row in a little over six weeks, I took a break in early March 2018 and went to see one of my all-time favorite bands, Roger Clyne and the Peacemakers. We bought Amigo Access passes and got to meet and greet the band before the show. As usual, it was a fantastic night.

Too bad I woke up the next morning with a stiff neck and could barely move. I’d written nearly 200,000 words in six weeks, all while hunched over a tiny 13” MacBook Pro. My 6’4” body cried uncle. Rather than writing, I spent time plotting and outlining my next book and exploring using Dragon for dictation. If I couldn’t type, I had to find a way to keep getting the words out.

A throwaway line about mutations I’d written at the end of Escape of the Glitter Princess ended up being the spark for the plot of book three. I drafted pages and pages of an outline, plotting things out, only needing to fill in the rest of the story in between.

I got bored with such a rigid structure, and it went nowhere. I scrapped the outline and the chapters I’d written and started over.

I kept the basic idea, but went back to being a pantser rather than a plotter, having fun coming up with new ideas and scenes by letting my mind wander every time I sat down to write. I also slowed down my writing pace and worked on creating a cleaner first draft.

Around that time, I heard about a book called Writing Into the Dark by Dean Wesley Smith. I read it straight through and knew it fit my style of surprising myself when I sit down to write.

Tabby and her cubs were nowhere to be found in the initial outline. They appeared out of nowhere as I wrote, just as they appeared to Jock, Dom, and Desire. I geek out over pictures of baby animals on Twitter, so I’m sure that had something to do with it.

I wrote steadily for the rest of April, with a deadline looming at the end of that month for another trip to Turks and Caicos with some friends we’d met there in 2015. I didn’t quite make it, as the battle scene at the end proved elusive. I sketched out a few notes to come back to later, and I finally finished it off during the editing process last month.

I have to thank my wife again for persevering through a few weekends of seriously long editing sessions. At least Chicago in October was suitably dark and dreary, perfect weather for being cooped up in front of her iMac.

We nailed down the final draft just in time for me to have it proofread and ready to launch as I made my way to Las Vegas for this week’s 20 Books to 50K writer’s conference.

I’m dying for a burger and a beer as I write this and will soon head out to meet up with fellow writers I’ve only met online.

Stay tuned for Book Four coming in late December.

Chad V. Holtkamp
Las Vegas, Nevada
5 November 2018

Copyright © 2018 Chad V. Holtkamp.
All rights reserved.

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