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Time to start watching the skies . . . my co-author and I have a short story coming up on Tor.com on July 2.

We sold this story back in early December of last year, after having worked on it, off and on, for longer than I care to contemplate.  We’d take it out, tweak it a bit, get to about the halfway point, get stuck, and put it aside again to work on something else.  Lather, rinse, and repeat.

Finally, though, it clicked . . . we rethought a secondary character, threw out all the scenes that were trying to pull the short story out of its intended shape (when you’re primarily a novelist, your mind will sometimes insist on serving up novel-type scenes even when you don’t want them), and figured out who our bad guys actually were and what they were really up to.

After that, really, finishing the story was a snap.

The moral of the story?  As usual:  Don’t give up.

And sometimes, the cure for being stuck is to start throwing stuff out until what you’ve got left feels right.

(Don’t trash your out-takes, though.  See The Adventure of the Five Chapter Nines.)