Why yes, I should be asleep. Sometimes, though, when you live with a high-energy toddler who takes forever to wind down for bedtime, you need a few extra hours to yourself to unwind after she finally crashes. (Tonight I drew her, on her request, Daddy Pig from Peppa Pig eating chicken nuggets and butter. It was a masterpiece for the ages.)
While I'm waiting for my brain to shift to a lower gear, I thought I might as well put together a writing update!
Earthkeepers has been sent off to the proofreader! I finished going through my content editor's notes, and then meticulously picked through the prose, and I think this latest draft is looking really good! The most major changes in terms of plot were giving Kieri a more substantial character arc, and changing part of the climax to help Miette's conflict with Varine come to a more satisfying conclusion. I don't want to give away too much about that, but let's just say I had more fun with robots. This entire book is about fun with robots.
While I thought I was going to work on the cover while the manuscript was getting proofread, I'm very tired from all of this marathon writing, so I will probably give myself a break for a little while and just start on the cover when I feel like it. (That being said, I will definitely start working on it no later than when I make the final edits to the manuscript based on my proofreader's corrections and feedback. I definitely won't delay this novel's release due to illustration laziness, don't worry.)
On another writing-related note, I've also come up with a couple of new ideas for some short Neopets fics, because clearly I have become so emotionally invested in that cast that I cannot stop writing about them despite no longer actually playing Neopets. :)
One of the fics is more of Terra's family and friends playing Neoquest, because that seems to be a running joke. It's also about Terra's and Blynn's friendship being tested, as Blynn gets a little too into Quest Mastering and forgets that Neoquest is supposed to be fun for everybody, and if anybody stops having fun, the group may need to step back and reevaluate how they're doing things. I may or may not have based this on real experiences. (cough)
The other one is a story about Suhel staying with Lexora's family (from Return to Lynwood) for Giving Day (the Neopian equivalent of Christmas), where she helps the Fitchet-Brownings learn that holiday traditions are all well and good, but it is entirely possible to over-tradition yourself and not leave any room for spontaneity or time to just rest and soak in the season.
I got the idea when thinking about how I am actually not big on Christmas traditions because I don't like being rigidly adherent to an arbitrary system, because I am a renegade like that. To me, Christmas is still Christmas even if I celebrate it completely differently every year. It's all about remembering the Reason for the season. And spoiling children, that's important too. (Also discount Christmas candy on December 26th, let's not forget about that.)
I then realized the initial concept would work well with Suhel and the Fitchet-Brownings, especially since I previously established that she sometimes spends holidays with them. I thought it would be fun to get a look into that scenario. I just think there's something amusing about plunking an enormous, taciturn Werelupe into an Edwardian domestic setting.
I'm not sure exactly when I will get around to these two fics, but they are definitely on the drawing board.
For now, I should get some sleep.