Progress Report November 2023

Progress Report November 2023

Image shows a pond in a park, with a big tree framing it to the left and leaves on the right. At the other side of the pond trees show off fall colors, underneath a blue sky with thin white clouds.
The park where I like to walk – taken today.

I’ll start this progress report with the best news ever: I’m writing again and I’m having a lot of fun with it!

A big part of that is NaNoWriMo. I’ve done it several times, and it usually is enough external motivation to get me writing again. I failed it last year, and I’ll probably fail it this year, but it still is an incentive to write more than I have been.

Because this year has been rather frustrating with writing. I’ve had years like that before, where nothing really drew me into stories. And I still have that now. It’s hard doing it all alone, after all.

I’m trying to find author friends, trying to establish connections here in town. I’ve failing at that, as well. But at least, the ideas are coming again.

More about that below, in the individual progress reports.

Winds and Pillars Progress Report

You probably saw that I finally got Earth Splits published. I’m very much relieved, even though I had to do a quick fix to the epub when a friend told me about an unedited chapter. That was embarrassing. Fortunately, they caught it before I published the print book. Phew.

Sky Burns is next, and his story is mostly done, it just needs some cleaning and possibly filling in some blanks. I’m definitely hoping I can get it published in January next year. And just like all the others, Sky is special and dear to my heart. He even gives West a run for his money.

I’m still in the process of writing Sun (Burns). Sun is… precious in a very different way, and where he ends up was as much a surprise to me as it was for him. I’m learning about a very different aspect of history through him and his adventure, and that’s wonderful. I think I’ll be able to share his story in spring.

Even Moon has already said hi. (Moon Rises). She’s quite a character, cocky, strong, determined and often wrong. It’ll take her a while to learn to temper her arrogance and admit that the world isn’t quite as she thought it was. And I already know she’ll meet someone quite fascinating – and related to a side char in one of the other books. Yes, I’m being mean and won’t tell you anytime soon.

Wolves Progress Report

This is where I have some exciting news. You see, I’m racing to finish A Wolf’s Christmas in time to release it, well, before Christmas. That’s what I’m writing for NaNo, and I’m about halfway done. Mark and Fred have also become dear to me (guess it happens with all my MCs, or I can’t write them. And in this book, you’re getting a taste of Germany.

Shane and Dylan have been pushed back, but I think I’ll be able to finish their story in time for a release in early spring, between Sky and Sun.

Because I have a lot of plans for the world my Wolves live in. LOTS.

Shifter World Progress Report

You see, when I started writing NaNo, Writer Brain took that as a signal to shower me with all the story ideas. And I mean ALL. I’m serious.

I already started the first story in a spin-off series I’ll call Mustangs of the West. Yep, those will be stories about horse shifters. Don’t be surprised, you know West. I couldn’t let him be the only one, okay?

So “A Mustang’s Dream” will be the first, and while I’m still looking for a name for the MMC, I already know where they live – out in Oregon, close to plenty of Herd Management Areas. That gives me plenty of opportunities for them to run in the desert.

But that’s not all. Writer Brain also showed me a Tiger shifter who has been kidnapped and needs to be rescued – and he might be part of the Shifters of the North spin-off. That will feature big creatures from the northern hemisphere, bears, lynxes, maybe moose. Not sure yet, but that is definitely a plot kernel I want to explore.

Even that isn’t all, though.

You see, I finally found an origin myth for my Wolves, and while I won’t spoil more just yet, I already have a name for that third spin-off series: Wolves of the Past. That will be alternate history, and yes, it’ll come with a lot of research. So much fun.

Life Progress Report

Life is not… an area where I’m making a lot of progress.

Loneliness is still getting me, I find it difficult to get everything done that should be done, and right now, it seems that making RL friends here in town is beyond me. I have days when self-care is hard.

And I’m being open about it because authors are real people, and we’re more than just the books we put out. I managed, I’m independent, I’ll carry on, but it can be hard, and that does impact how much I can write on a given day. If my energy goes into holding the big black dog at bay, it’s not going into my stories.

I suppose that’s a roundabout way of apologizing that I haven’t published more this year.

Social Media Progress Report

I’m starting to move more and more into the Fediverse. I’ve been on Mastodon for a year, and it’s quickly become my favorite place on the web. I just added a Lemmy community – partially because the enshittification of Facebook is building and I don’t know for how much longer I can stomach it. I love my fan group there, but I’m building one away from commercial internet.

So now there are Hannah’s Dragonriders in the Fediverse, and you can actually follow that message board thingie (it does look ugly, sorry) from Mastodon, just put this into the search bar: !

Newsletter – Not a Progress Report

And as usual, this is your not-Popup asking you to sign up to my Newsletter, just so you won’t miss any release or other important news. It comes out once a month, on the 13th.

I compile writing news, book recommendations, links to book deals and – some people say this is the best part – an Ember story. Ember is my little red dragon familiar, and she has an adventure in every newsletter. It’s the only way you can read it.

So… sign up below!

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About Hannah Steenbock

Hannah Steenbock is an author, dreamer, and coach. She has published several short stories in English and German, as well as one novel in German. In 2013 she started self-publishing her work. In 2014, she has won two awards for her short story "Sequoia".
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