Category: Writing & Art

Posts related to my creative writing and multimedia art projects, including books, characters, experiments, and process.

Preptober 6 / 31 – Synopsis

Preptober 6 / 31 – Synopsis

I’m a planster, but more on the side of a pastser than a planner, for NaNoWriMo. That said, this year’s novel has a little more of a synopsis than usual because I’ve been having fun with NaNo to write an ongoing series of short novels. This one picks up where last year’s one leaves off. However, this is as much of a synopsis as it’s going to get. A big part of NaNo’s value to me is that the radical format–high speed, low quality, social writing, little planning–helps break me out of creative ruts and explore writing and story in new, fresh ways.

Preptober 5 / 31 – POV

Preptober 5 / 31 – POV

I really like writing in first person POVs. I like having access to the characters’ full sensorium; I like being able to embody my MCs in my imagination. But I also need a justification for why this person is self-narrating, or why they would be narrating to the reader. Who are they telling their story too? Mac’s character concept was in part an excuse for a specific POV when I first started with him, though he’s a lot more than just that.

Preptober 3 / 31 – Plot Formula

Preptober 3 / 31 – Plot Formula

Todays prompt was “choose a plot formula.” I had to look up what that meant, but it turned out to be the term for things like Aristotle’s Incline (note: this is just a nice write up; I have no connection to the author of the blog), which I’ve used for most things I’ve written for the past decade at least. I found this Lester Dent plot formula and reading it made me laugh. My hand written summary is just a summary–read the whole entertaining thing.

Preptober! 1 / 31 – Word Goal

Preptober! 1 / 31 – Word Goal

NaNoWriMo Season is almost upon us, and I’m always so excited I want to start RIGHT AWAY. Thankfully, there is Preptober, the month in which we prepare for NaNoWriMo in order to assist with impulse control. Because according to Traditional NaNoWriMo Rules, November 1st at midnight is when hundreds of thousands of people all over the world put down the first words on a new novel in the ridiculousness that is National Novel Writing Month.

I love this event. I’ve done it every year since 2008, except the year I was completing my dissertation. I’ve never shared the details much outside of my regular writing group though. This year we won’t be able to do the usual in-person write-ins and everything sucks, so I’m going to blog process and progress and share more with my fellow WriMos and Storytellers, even though it’s always a hot mess LOL

Here’s the list of Preptober prompts I’m using this year if anyone wants to follow along.

And here’s my first prompt, announce your word goal! You can connect with me / be my NaNo buddy at

Mac Carroll Multiverse Novel Notebook

This is a brief flip-through of the traveler’s notebook I keep for stories in the Mac Carroll multiverse.

Tools I use:

Inserts are for:

  1. Working things out which gets set aside when filled;
  2. Each novel as it develops that gives a longer-term reference for that particular book’s details;
  3. A world bible intended for permanent reference for things like maps, timelines, character details, technology, world-rules, etc.
  4. (Sometimes, but not pictured here, an insert for administrative and marketing type tasks related to stories or books in the world.)

You can read a story in this universe in the anthology Spoon Knife 4: A Neurodivergent Guide to Spacetime from Autonomous Press.

Hearts & Tails: Spacetime and Mathematics

FIRST LAW OF THE REACHABLE NOWS: No alternate versions of a person may be in eye-line of each other within the same now, or both will suffer immediate death by fire.

My novella “Hearts and Tails” in Spoon Knife 4: Spacetime is set in a soft-SF multiverse where WWI never ended, it just kind of petered out into a devastated landscape and a chemical-weapons cold war. There are 90’s tropes galore: magic, bio-engineered mutant powers, impossible psi-ops, and neon-glow cyberspace–depending which of four reachable nows one falls into. And maths. There are maths!!!

Okay, so I really love mathematics. I know this is mostly an unpopular opinion–Or not! Maybe you may share my love!

Macintosh Carroll, the central character of these stories shares my love. He is a maths savant with color-number synaesthesia.

a place where four four-dimensional world-lines line up creating a single now, a point shared by four spaces, four-D space-time four four four four times four sixteen blue blue blue blue like the bluest blue that ever was–

Mac stops writing and closes his eyes, the numbers washing him like seas. They are beautiful to him, beautiful and terrifying.

Mathematics–loosely, softly anyway–is how I keep the multiverse of the stories self-consistent and believable.

A formal system in mathematics is an engine for creating truths. It consists of axioms (accepted truths), rules (specified behaviors), and theorems (less obvious truths). New truths can be created by applying rules to axioms and/or theorems, so from a little bit of logic whole universes are made. Logical consistency is what builds a formal system, no matter how outlandish its axioms.

In the case of the Mac Carroll Multiverse, there’s a space-time phenomenon that lines up four realities at a single point. Some individuals can slip between the realities at that point. The axioms include the dynamics of the slip, many of the facts of our world circa 1991, plus unique world-facts such the Ottoman Empire dropping a chemical bomb on Germany because, after 40 years, they want out of the Axis. The rules are called The Laws of the Reachable Nows, and are recorded in a book shared by multiverse travelers. From those axioms and rules, the rest of the mulitverse follows.

But because I love disrupting stereotypes as much as I love maths, Mac’s also a shifty low-life punk with a belligerent attitude who is embarrassed by just how deeply he loves maths, and hides it behind a lot of attitude. Cuz nerdiness is punk rock too <3

In Spoon Knife 4: A Neurodivergent Guide to Spacetime. Autonomous Press, Amazon, or ask your local bookstore.

New Book Excerpt & Interview on All The Things

I’ll write more–maybe too much–about this as time goes on but here is the very first post squeeeee. I am too excited/terrified. Terricided? Excitified? I am a weirdo. HERE ARE ALL THE THINGS

1. The wonderful folks at¬†Wordgathering¬†interviewed me about disability fiction, Hoshi, my next book in Hoshi’s world, and other cool stuff! Read my interview!

2. They also published an except from said next book in Hoshi’s world! Read the excerpt!

3. Oh, yeah, there is a next book in that world and here is a preview of its cover

Black background. Jupiter and the four Galilean moos are across the top. Beneath them are rainbow waves above a slender male dancer who is keeling in a single spotlight. Sparks come from his hands and arms. At the bottom, the book title is "Resonance" and the author is "Dora M Raymaker"

TERRICITEIFIED and so many thanks to Wordgathering for being awesome!

Read all their stuff!

More to come!

Theme: Overlay by Kaira 2020 Dora M Raymaker
Portland, Oregon