This is the official blog for The Orion Spur series. Hopefully in time the stories will be here in various formats, Word, pdf, ebook, cake etc. If there is enough interest we might post the deleted scenes and chapters that were not good enough to make the final cut. Please let us know what you want, and if we’re not too busy writing, we might oblige. Most of all please let us know how great we are. That way we’re encouraged to write!
The rapid progress of the last few weeks has ground to a halt. It happens.
Writing is like chocolate, it’s sweet and melts if you don’t eat it fast enough!
Harpy has spent a lot of time writing and deleting and rewriting. HkdOnXetg has been plugging away to finish chapter 3, including an extra scene we added since the last update.
During the last chat we tried something new – role playing.
We took on the role of two of the characters and had a conversation. It was fun and productive. It allowed the scene to develop in a natural and organic manner and the scene ended up at a slightly different point as planned. As often happens when doing it alone.
We’ll use that technique again, I’m sure, when we get stuck, which happens a lot!
We also send our good wishes to those affected by Irma and the recent earthquake in Mexico.
After creating an outline we were happy with that contained all the scenes we wanted to cover, in the order we wanted to cover them, we set about writing.
Then we came to chapter 3.
Why are we doing this scene? Who is in this scene? What do they want from the scene? And do we really need that scene if all they’re going to do is not talk about what’s going on?
One chat session later the first half of the chapter was rearranged, one scene was thrown out and sort of incorporated into another, the first scene had a purpose, and became the second scene. It now made sense.
The chapter was easy to write after that.
We did say previously that things change. Most of the time it’s our mind about what makes sense at any given time.
Will it survive unscathed until the end?
Titles are hard. Harder than conceiving a plot and writing.
The very first outline for the series, or single book as it was at that point, was written in a spare thirty minutes. It defined the setting (vaguely), six characters (badly) and the relationships between the characters (rather well).
Since the setting, The Hegemony, was defined first, Word selected that as the default title for the document. That became the title of the book.
When we felt there was enough of a story to make this a series, the first book became “Family Business” and the series was “The Hegemony”.
Shortly before release, a change of series title was considered. Only we couldn’t decide what it should be.
Then we realised it was staring us in the face, and “The Orion Spur” became a thing.
Yet even now our files relating to the series still contain “HEG”, and we refer to it as Heg when we chat about it. It seems even bad titles are hard to drop.
As for the titles of the individual books, they can be hard too. Right up until release we were still unsure whether book 2 was “Enemy Inside” or “The Enemy Inside”. We mocked up a cover with both before settling on the “The”.
Before starting the outline for book 3 in earnest it had a title of “A Line In The Stars”. At the moment it’s “Across The Great Divide”. When it’s released it might be something different.
Book 4 has a title that I won’t reveal yet since it’s more than likely going to change. Or not. Maybe we got it right this time.
Writing has started in earnest!
This seems like a good place to describe how we write.
We live in different time zones, eight hours apart. A few times a week, in the few hours where our days overlap, we have chat sessions to discuss sticking points and review what each other has done.
Writing is split between us by working in different chapters, but sometimes we have to time share in the same chapter. That’s where a time zone difference comes in handy.
As a general rule I (Harpy) like to rush ahead throwing words left and right, then Hkdonxetg comes along and tidies things up.
Once we get to the end, we’ll go back and do another tidy up or two. Then it goes to a beta reader. At that point there will be some things we know are going to change or be added. During the down time while our beta betas we’ll work on the plans for the next instalment.
Our beta’s usual comment is “more detail”. So we go through, add details and our planned changes. Then we buckle down and have mega chat sessions concentrating on a chapter at a time. This will mostly catch typos, missing words, and extraneous words, but it also occasionally highlights something major that had slipped by us.
Once everything is fixed, we panic and release it.
Unfortunately for us, and you, it all takes time.
Kikola (kee-koh-lə) Mariantha (mah-ree-an-thə) Jacand (jah-kahnd) ap Karthen (ap kahr-thehn)
Kikola is one of the main characters in the Orion Spur series. She is a complicated individual. Quiet and sensitive in private, yet tough and ruthless in her military role.
Age 27 – Born Year 1575 on Kalenth;
Aloyd, First-Class in the Kalenth Hegemony military; commanding officer of the Striker Group Sword (book 1);
security officer for Dansek Security Force on Trengos (book 2);
daughter of Mariantha and Strambik
sister of Rephon
The outline for book 3 “Across The Great Divide” is complete(ish). We’re just doing the final check to make sure all the bits we want to cover are there.
Then comes the hard part.
The outline will be our guide, but it will no doubt change (I already think we have chapters 8 and 9 the wrong way around!) As we write the characters have a tendency to take on a life of their own and don’t always do what we planned. At least that’s the excuse we use when we’ve forgotten what the outline said!
As we swelter in the heat of summer, a whopping low twenties Celsius, the outline for Book 3, currently titled “Across The Great Divide”, is taking shape.
We know all the beats we want to hit, it’s just a matter of putting them in the right order. The first half is fleshed out, the second half is looking a bit sparse.
Skeleton scenes for chapter 1 have been written. And few other scenes up to chapter 4 also exist.