Dawn of Humanity / Laws of Nature / Man vs Nature

How I’m Doing on Laws of Nature 4

With all the COVID lockdowns, I’ve had a lot of time to work on my writing. I’m thankful that this story, Laws of Nature, Book 2 of the Dawn of Humanity trilogy and part of the first trilogy in Man vs. Nature, inspired me because I fear I would be pretty bored otherwise.

Tagline and summary

The tagline for Laws of Nature is:

A boy blinded by fire. A woman raised by wolves. An avowed enemy offers help. Can they save Lucy’s tribe?

…and a quick summary:

Set 1.8 million years ago in Africa, Lucy and her band of early humans struggle against the harsh reality of a world ruled by nature, where predators stalk them and a violent new species of man threatens to destroy their world. Only by changing can they prevail.

If you ever wondered how earliest man survived but couldn’t get through the academic discussions, this book is for you. Prepare to see this violent and beautiful world in a way you never imagined.

Here’s what I did the past month:

  • The first three weeks of this month were spent reading through the rough draft of Laws of Nature. I rewrote the first five paragraphs over and over and still didn’t like it so moved on, hoping for inspiration later. I checked for continuity, flow, timeline issues, character development. This added about sixty pages and deleted about fifteen. It came out a good length.
  • Next, I started wordsmithing. First, I searched for ‘was’, ‘there’ and about fifty other lazy sort of words. In each case, I evaluated first their purpose and then whether it was the right word. This will probably take a few months to finish.
  • I got tired of paying for so many features I didn’t use in MailChimp so switched my newsletter to AWeber (I have a link in the sidebar). That’s a lot harder than it sounds. If you don’t get a newsletter, let me know and I’ll re-add you.
  • I think I found epochal music for the trailer. We’ll see if I feel that way in a month.
  • I ordered the book cover from Damonza. Editing is going better than expected so I want to be prepared. They ask for a lot of information so it forced me to organize my summative thoughts on the book.
  • I started researching the next trilogy in this saga. It will take place 75,000 years ago, a time when the super-volcano Toba erupted, throwing the planet into a volcanic winter and driving the world-wide population of human beings down to roughly a thousand reproductive adults. One study says we hit as low as 40. That sounds interesting, doesn’t it?
  • I am moving my Amazon Advantage nonfiction print books over to KDP print. I started with twelve and have two left to move. Selling print books is much simpler on KDP than Advantage. I don’t have to pay to ship my print books to Amazon (and have them sent back if they don’t sell–at my expense). Through KDP, I am able to drop my price by 20% to customers. I do worry that my local printer can’t compete with Amazon’s POD service but I’m not sure what to do about that.

How are you doing on your latest WIP? I’d love to hear!

More on How I’m Doing

How I’m Doing on The Quest for Home– 4

How I’m Doing on Survival of the Fittest — 4

Book Launch–Born in a Treacherous Time

Jacqui Murray is the author of the popular Building a Midshipman, the story of her daughter’s journey from high school to United States Naval Academy, the Man vs. Nature saga, and the Rowe-Delamagente thrillers. She is also the author/editor of over a hundred books on integrating tech into education, adjunct professor of technology in education, blog webmaster, an Amazon Vine Voice,  a columnist for NEA Today, and a freelance journalist on tech ed topics. Look for her next prehistoric fiction, Laws of Nature, Summer 2021.

91 thoughts on “How I’m Doing on Laws of Nature 4

  1. Pingback: How I’m Doing on Laws of Nature 7 | WordDreams...

  2. Pingback: I’m traveling–How I’m Doing on LoN #5 | WordDreams...

  3. Hi Jacqui – I’d kept this to read … but then had an outage blip – now back and catching up on six days out … you seem to have things well organised and I admire your wordsmithing search for those ‘common’ words … was, there and others … interesting to say the least. Stay safe – Hilary

    Liked by 1 person

      • No – mine was one of Hilary’s Law of Unintended Consequences! So – also no … I haven’t considered a generator … but if that’d help … I guess – then yes … I’ve no technical ability to be intelligent about that sort of thing!! Sorreeeee !!

        Liked by 1 person

  4. You’ve been busy, as always, Jacqui. So nice that the trilogy is flowing! After reading your latest update on what you’ve been working on, I now understand what you meant earlier about the human race almost getting extinguished. That is super fascinating and I can see why the third trilogy will be intriguing to write (and read) as well! Well done, you!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Silver lining that time at home has meant more time writing. Well, should have. I’ve been doing too much stuff with getting the indie press running that I haven’t actually done any new fiction drafting in the past two months or so… 😦

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I just finished reading and reviewing Survival of the Fittest and thought it was fantastic! I’m making good editing progress with my urban fantasy. The critique group I started in Sept. has been invaluable and it should be ready to send to beta readers in 2021. I’m really focused on pairing it down, and like you, I need to find all the lazy words and get rid of them 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Kudos on such great progress! You are firing on all cylinders!! I made a trip up to northern Vermont on Saturday to check out the setting for my current WIP, which is just getting underway. I discovered I had the landscape and location of the river all wrong. Sigh . . . But it’s fixable.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sorry I missed your comment, Liz. I think this was when my business website started nagging me about problems. It actually sends me emails saying I need to fix stuff! I am currently looking into a new one that doesn’t nag me.


  8. Sounds like you’re going well with your ms, Jacqui.Good luck with your lazy word removal – that can be painful to do.

    Querying the last and plotting the next. Plotting nearly done, just putting it into the spreadsheet at the moment. Querying ongoing. It’s not a fast process.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I can hardly wait to get my teeth into the next Lucy book. Also, the next series with the “volcanic winter” sounds REALLY fascinating. I’m so glad you’ve been working hard. I’m having Lucy withdrawals just now and will be so happy to see her again in the next book.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. The silver lining to the C-19 virus is more time to write, virtual meetings without travel, and time to read. No need to go over the flipside. You’ve got your own list. Thanks for reminding us how much we can get done with a little time and effort. Looking forward to Laws of Nature #2. Write on.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. You certainly have been very busy, Jacqui. That is the one good thing about staying home, you get to do all the admin you don’t want to do. It keeps you busy. I am sure that the research for your new trilogy is very interesting, but time consuming.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m being forced to change platforms for a bunch of my writerly stuff for varied reasons. This moving my books–I love being able to offer them more affordably but it is a ton of work. Sigh.


    • The research will be huge but I can’t wait to start. Isn’t it amazing to think volcanic eruptions of a magnitude that almost killed us off? The suspect Yellowstone is another super volcano that will erupt one day. Hmm…

      Liked by 1 person

    • I have, more than I expected. Which is why I already ordered the cover. I might publish it to Amazon as a pre-order soon. One of my Indie efriends did that with a publication date in late summer. Any thoughts on that?


    • Oooh I hope you do–blog about your progress. For me, it helps me to see what I’ve accomplished, what’s left. I also hope that for new authors, it shows them what is required when writing a book. All those steps.


  12. You’re certainly making great progress, Jacqui. Of course, I’m not surprised. Wordsmithing is always fun…at least I think so. 🙂 I’m pressing on with book six and getting close to the halfway mark. I’ve also been anxious to receive an advance proof of the cover for my July release.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. You have been so productive. I wrote 50% of Amanda in France which I would have liked to have been completed by now. I filled the extra time in with other things. And now we have a second dog which is more work than I counted on.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Jacqui, congratulations on all your achievements and wow, you’ve been busy! Great tag line and summary of your WIP and I love the sound of your next series! How do you learn find about all these events? I’ve never heard of Torba and astonishing to think the human race might have dwindled to 40 reproductive beings! Yikes! And still we are here!

    Liked by 2 people

    • I’m not sure how I came across it. There are several times man almost disappeared from the planet but this one is pretty darn recent. It really grabbed my imagination. Volcanoes are a lot more powerful than we give them credit for.

      Liked by 1 person

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