Sometime around midnight last night I wrote the 25,000th word of Earthcrosser. That means I'm about half-way done with my first draft! If all goes well, I'll be needing test readers in the month of September.
One thing I love about writing science fiction is that I don't have to make everything up. The real world is full of cool stuff I can use. Take, for example, the exciting discovery I made during today's early morning writing session. The characters were hiking around outside after sunset, and I wanted to know what the sky would look like on June 27, 2087. So I went to the Sky View Cafe.
I typed in the seventy-nine years in the future date and discovered that Mars and Jupiter will be in conjunction, passing spectacularly close to each other just two nights later. I never would have thought of that on my own, but it is perfect! It illustrates some astronomy concepts which happen to be important to the plot, it might be symbolic (we writers love that kind of thing), and it provides a nice concrete detail about the night sky which I can bask in for a descriptive sentence or two.