Here's what I've worked on and not finished since May 1, 2018, with whatever I worked on most recently at the top regardless of when it was started, and getting older as you go down. (Originally the start date was July 1, 2015, but nothing on the current list goes back that far.) There's also a list of finished works from that time period below.
I got very little writing done in 2018 and 2019 because we were preparing our house for sale, and then traveling the world. In 2020 we found, bought, and furnished our new home, and like everyone else we were dealing with the pandemic. I hope things will pick up now that we're settled again.
Until the summer of 2015 I was absolutely abysmal about keeping this up to date; it ought to be updated at least monthly, and I'd been averaging roughly once every two years. I'm making an effort to do better; I managed to keep it up for some time, but there have been some multi-month gaps. I'm getting better. I hope.
Works in Progress:
I've been working on an old short story fragment, "The Girl Who Couldn't Fly." I'm on page 6 of maybe 15-20.
I had said On A Field Sable was back-burnered but still alive; I've pulled it off the back burner and gone through it, making minor revisions, but haven't actually started writing new material. I'm on page 216, with over 60,000 words written.
I had said The Dragon's Price was back-burnered but still alive; I've pulled it off the back burner and am writing it again. I'm on page 78, the start of Chapter Seven. I said I had over 20,000 words written, but that was including a lot of outline and notes; it's really 18,800 words so far.
The Wizard's Key is a story set in the Walasian Empire maybe twenty years before A Young Man Without Magic -- I think; the date may well change. It involves a pair of sisters with certain magical gifts. The idea is older; I resisted the temptation to actually start writing it until October 19th, 2016, when I produced the first three pages. I'm on page 36, in Chapter Four.
I'm on page 16 of Eleven Blades, in Chapter Two. Not related to any previous work, probably a one-shot.
The fourth Tom Derringer novel, Tom Derringer and the Electrical Empire, is complete in third draft, at 233 pages, and has been sent to the editor. I've plotted three more Tom Derringer novels beyond the four I've actually written -- well, not so much "plotted" as come up with premises for them and figured out how they connect to the series. They're Tom Derringer and the Sinister Statue, Tom Derringer and the Floating Fortress, and Tom Derringer and the Misplaced Metropolis, though that last title may change. (I've also plotted a shorter Tom Derringer story, "Tom Derringer and the Monster of the Mills," that takes place during Chapter Two of Tom Derringer in the Tunnels of Terror.) And I have an idea for a story about Tom's son with the working title Johnny Derringer vs. the Crime-Lords of Atlantis.
I'm on page 7 of a major Ethshar novel, with the working title (which is the third, and won't be the final title) Dancing with Wizards.
I'm still on page 7 of The Multidimensional Adventures of Victoria Jane Nesbitt, and I still don't know whether this is going to be a novel, a never-ending serial, or what. It's about a fourth-grade teacher who happens to have the Chosen One of an alternate universe in her class.
Stormchildren is a fantasy novel set in the Quandish Archipelago. I'm on page 18.
Elfshot is a fantasy murder mystery; I'm on page 21.
Got an anthology invitation and started a story called "The Wizard's Captive." The title will probably change. I'm on page 2.
I wrote the first three pages of a short story called "Halos."
I'm up to page 55 on Veran the Fair and the Thieves of Borgran.
I probably shouldn't list it here at all, as it's really just another in my huge backlog of ideas and premises that may never go anywhere, but I came up with a new story with the working title "The Old Man" and wrote the first page. It may tie in with "The Multidimensional Adventures of Victoria Jane Nesbitt" and with "Uncle George." Or it may not. (I have at least two other new ideas that are still only ideas that I'm not even going to mention here.)
On a whim, I pulled out an old fragment called "The Detestable Tenant of Greenwizard Street" and added a few paragraphs to it. It's on page 3.
I'm not sure what's happening with The Dragon's Dreams (title still very much subject to change). I finished what's either a complete story at thirteen pages, or the first installment in a longer work. I was considering the possibility of using it as the first part of a serial on Amazon's Kindle Vella program, but that probably isn't worth the effort.
I'm three pages into a rather silly short fantasy story called "Hammered."
I did some work recently on a very old project, Mirrors and Shadows. I'm on page 23 of what's intended to be a trilogy. (I also have lots of notes and outlines.)
Back in 2001 I wrote what amounted to a blurb for a story. I've started actually writing the story, under the title "Going Home." I'm on page 4.
I'm on page 5 of "The Bone Wheel," a short story unconnected to any other work.
I've plotted another Ethshar story with the working title "The Almoner." At this point I think it's a novelet, but I could be way off. It's set in Ophera, in the Small Kingdoms. I have a short outline of the first half of the story, and some notes on the characters, but haven't actually started writing it.
I have completed a rough draft of a Harry's All-Night Hamburgers story called "Tales from the Crypt" that I started back in 1988, but I'm not happy with it and have put it aside for eventual rewrite. It's 20 pages, 4,800 words.
I came up with an entirely new Harry's story for the first time in decades, and wrote it in a single day. "One-Hit Wonder," 2,500 words. Didn't sell the first place I sent it, so I'm taking my time to decide what to try next.
"The Whispering Bandit" is the working title for a short story I was writing for an anthology, but it ran much too long, so I re-thought it and wrote "An Interrupted Betrothal" for them instead. However, I saved the original version, which had reached 4,500 words without even introducing one of the major characters; it's sufficiently different I think the world has room for both. It seems to want to be a novella. I'm still on page 17.
"The Dancing Teacher" (formerly "The Dance Lesson"): A short fantasy story about a court magician and a prince's dancing teacher. After cutting back several times because of plot problems, I'm now on page 15 of an estimated 25-30, but did not get it done in time for the anthology I had been aiming at. I have now set it aside indefinitely.
"Double Agent": A parallel-world short story I hoped would interest an anthology editor who suggested I send him something. I wrote three pages of an estimated 20-25, then decided I had a better idea and put it aside.
Earthright is a science fiction novel I've had on the back burner for years. It came up in conversation with an editor, so I wrote up a proper proposal -- four chapters and a twelve-page outline -- and sent it off to my agent. It hasn't yet gone anywhere beyond that.
Scattered Sparks: A new fantasy novel project that I came up with late on January 28, 2016. I wrote about fifteen pages in my initial burst of enthusiasm, but seem to have stalled out on page 27.
The Innkeeper's Daughter is over fifty pages now.
Wrote the first couple of pages of Kelder the Small, an Ethshar novel.
I seem to have plotted a superhero novel, but haven't started writing it: The Rise and Fall of the Emerald Eagle, set in the same city as "One of the Boys."
Three Days Late for the Hanging: This popped into my head awhile back, demanding to be written. I'm sixteen pages in, and think it's going to be a novelet, maybe a novella, rather than a novel. It's a supernatural Western about a deal with Death (not the Devil, just Death) that's gone slightly wrong and needs to be fixed.
It probably won't go anywhere, but I just started a story called "Uncle George" about a kid discovering that his uncle is a famous hero in another world. And after I'd written the first couple of pages I realized it's connected to The Multidimensional Adventures of Victoria Jane Nesbitt.
I have literally dozens of other projects that could be considered works in progress; see my future projects page for information about several of them. This list (including both the above works in progress and the stuff below that I'm no longer working on) is everything I've actually worked on since July 1, 2015, though.
Incidentally, I welcome feedback on which of these you'd like to see finished; feel free to e-mail me with your preferences.
No Longer in Progress:
Let me quickly summarize what happened to stuff I'd listed on this page previously:
Charming Sharra (the next Ethshar novel) should be out from Wildside Press in the fall of 2022.
"The Jurors" will appear in Three Time Travelers Walk Into... I've gone through the page proofs. Now available for pre-order; scheduled publication date is June 27, 2022.
"Paul is Dead": Short story written for the anthology Across the Universe, published October 2019.
"Personal Space": Short story, loosely based on a never-filmed story treatment I sold the CBS "Twilight Zone" series back in the 1980s, sold to Asimov's, published in the October 2019 issue.
"The Night People": Short story, sold to Amazing Stories, published in the Fall 2019 issue.
"Valedictory": Short story written and sold entirely between updates of this page; is in the anthology Release the Virgins! published January 2019.
"An Interrupted Betrothal": Short story that began as an abridged version of "The Whispering Bandit," but wound up its own thing. Sold to Lace and Blade 5, published February 2019.
"How I Found Harry's All-Night Hamburgers": Sold to Asimov's, appeared in March/April 2019 issue.
"Harry's Toaster": A short story about Harry's All-Night Hamburgers. Appeared in the first issue of the most recent revival of Amazing Stories, Fall 2018.
"The Prisoner of Shalott": Published in the anthology I wrote it for, By the Light of Camelot, summer 2018.
"Sorcery of the Heart," a novelet set in the Bound Lands, is in Lace and Blade 4, published February 2018.
"An Evil Opportunity Employer": A short superhero story. Included in an anthology called Unidentified Funny Objects 6 published in October 2017, and reprinted a couple of places since.
"On the Border," a story for a licensed anthology, has been abandoned permanently. It wasn't working.
The novel I referred to here as Bravo Foxtrot (probably not the actual title) has been completed and delivered to the game company that commissioned it. I have no idea if or when it will be published; since it's work-for-hire that's not my concern.
Graveyard Girl: Put aside awaiting rethinking and rewrite -- my agent didn't think it was ready. 50,000 words written.
Our holiday card for 2015: The story is available free on Smashwords under the title "The Abduction of Ebenezer Scrooge."
For anything not listed above, see my future projects page.
That's it; here's your list of handy exits: