EelKat Wendy C Allen - zdark Fantasy Author


2018 April/May/June Update:

As you know, most of the year I publish 2 to 3 articles a day.

However, every year during convention season, I take a break from that to go full swing CosPlay.

From early April 2018 to late June 2018, article posting schedule will be sporadic, while CosPlay Season and Convention events are going full swing.

During this time period, you can expect most, possible all new articles to be focused on costume making, CosPlay, and the characters I'm CosPlaying.

UPDATE: It's now divided into 7 pages. The primary page "Meet Avallach" is now over 20,000 words long. At this rate, it'll cross 60,000 long before the costume is finished, and that's not including the other 5 pages. The primary page has now crossed 60,000 89,000 words and counting, the whole set of Avallac'h pages are now more than 200,000 words long, and more then 500 pictures of Avallac'h and his friends have now been uploaded on these pages, plus there are now 400+ hour-long videos f the costume making process as we record live, every second of this insanely elaborate, over the top CosPlay project.

As of May 19, just 29 days to PortCon we are embroidering his blue coat in a countdown against the clock to finish in time for the event, while we pray that The Dazzling Razzberry will be re-weilded back together and drivable in time for PortCon, after it's recent vandalism by Old Orchard Beach's ever growing Ku Klux Klan problem.

There will still be daily updates, but the BULK of the daily updates will be limited to the pages linked here:

  1. The Avallac'h CosPlay: Who is Avallac'h?
  2. Obsession: Meet Avallac'h
  3. [NSFW] Avallac'h & His Nude Women | Witcher 3 Game Screenshots
  4. Historical Accuracy vs Avallac'h (to go live later this summer)
  5. The Avallac'h CosPlay Costume Making Vlogs (will go live AFTER finishing the costume)
  6. How To Make The Avallac'h CosPlay (will go live AFTER PortCon)
  7. How Much Did It Cost? ($800+ will run to around $3,000) Budgeting The Avallac'h CosPlay (eing written as the costume is being made, will go live after completion of the costume)
  8. Why do children CosPlay rapists & rape victims? & WHY Avallac'h is a M18+ character. 
  9. PortConMaine 2018
  10. On Being a Handicapped CosPlayer: A Look At Events of PortConMaine 2017 That Resulted In 3 Disabled CosPlayers Getting hurt at The Convention and How These Things Could Have Been Avoided


After PortCon Update:

PortCon 2018 is over... but the making of the Avallac'h CosPlay is not. It is not possible to make a costume as detailed as I'm making in fewer then 400 hours, and only 129 hours went into the simplified first run version you saw at PortCon'18. The complete version will not be seen until PortCon'19

If you want to see this costume in person and watch it's progression onward as I continue to expand it... I'll be wearing it at the monthly Maine Association of CosPlay Enthusiasts (M.A.C.E.) events, throughout 2018 and 2019, you are welcome to join us. The list of current events can be found here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/293470827423558/events/ This list is updated monthly, so be sure to check back often to find all the dates, locations, and details of events.


Should I aim for word counts or hours written?




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I personally do not aim for either. Instead my goal is to write a scene each sitting. A scene may be 2 or 3 paragraphs or 10 or 12 pages, depending on the story and scene in question.

A lot of people read my writing articles and assume (incorrectly) that I'm advocating aiming for specific word counts. This confusion comes from the fact I'm answering a question that specifically asks what my average word count is and how I reach those word counts, resulting in I answer that question by writing an article based on writing in comparison to word count. However, almost no one ever asks if I personally AIM for specific word counts or not. No. I don't aim for any certain word count goals.

The only reason you ever hear me say I average so many words a minute/hour/day, is simply because people want to know the word counts. But an average is just that: an average. I have days I barely get 1,000 words and days I reach 17,000 words. Both are extreme ends that I don't do often. Average only means you take the lowest number and the highest number, add them together, then divide them by whatever figure (seconds/minutes/hours) is needed to get the average in question. So if I said I averaged 5,000 words a day, it DOES NOT mean I write 5,000 words every day, it means 5,000 words was the result of adding the lowest number to the highest number and putting that number in the formula to get the end result.

So, if you wrote 50,000 words in 30 days, you take 50,000 and divide it by 30 to get an average of 1,667 words written per day. But you could have had 5 day of 100 words and 1 day of 30,000 words, and several days of 500 words. Just because 50,000 words in 30 days equals and average of 1,667 words a day, doesn't mean you wrote 1,667 words every single day.

I think most authors do this, where they say they write an average of so-and-so words a day, but then new writers look at that and mistakenly translate that to mean the author AIMS to write a specific number of words a day, when it's unlikely that's what the author meant, when they said the average a certain amount of words per day.

Does that make sense?

Hours per day on the other hand is quite different (for me). Because I'm a "career author" doing this as my full time job, (and publishing 4 or more novels a year and 4 or more short stories a month and 2 to 3 non-fiction articles a day) I've set aside a very specific work schedule. Just like any other person with a job, I have a specific, set schedule of hours I work each day. I get up and go to the office at the same time each day, have assignments/tasks that must be completed, have assigned breaks and lunch break, just as if I was working at WalMart or McDonald's.

This means I get up at a certain time each day, do my writing at a certain time for a certain amount of hours, take a timed break, then it's off to do more writing or editing or researching, depending on the day and time. In the end I work 3 shifts a day of 4 hours each, with a 15 minute break every 45 minutes, and a 1 hour break every 4 hours. For a total of 12 hours a day of writing and editing.

But even with this schedule, it can be pretty fluid. Say, today's assignment is to write one chapter for this novel, then editing one chapter for that other novel. If it takes me only 2 hours to write the chapter, that leaves me with 2 hours before my next shift starts. I may just move right to my next assignment, the chapter from that other novel that needs editing. I could have my entire day's planned assignments finished in the first 4 hour shift, meaning now I am done for the day and have the remaining two 4 hour shifts off. I may use that time to move on to writing/editing the next chapter, or I may take the rest of the day off to play video games. Or that one chapter may take me the full 12 hours to write and I not have time to do the editing assignment, in which case I may go into overtime and work more than 12 hours that day or I may move the editing assignment to the next day.

So even though I've set aside specific times to do things, I've also assigned myself tasks and goals. The tasks and goals are always in terms of scenes and chapters, and never in terms of word counts or hours needed to finish it. I never think "This scene needs to be 2,000 words long", but rather I think "This character needs to achieve this goal in this scene" and then I write until the scene is finished regardless of word count or hours needed to finish.

My method of setting aside a work schedule would work well for others who are doing writing as a full time career, but for people doing it as a hobby or any one who just has one book they want to write with no plans of doing more, this sort of schedule would be impractical.

Years ago, when writing wasn't a career for me, I used to set aside small chunks of time throughout the day. An hour first thing in the morning, before even getting out of bed. Another hour during lunch break. Another hour just before bed at night. That was what I usually did back then.

In the end, I think each writer is going to have a different method that works best for them, and the only way for them to find out what that method is, is for them to just try out every method until they find the one that fits their life, their writing goals, and their schedule.




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