I'm not going to read Valentine Rising right now after all. I hadn't picked it up in almost three weeks (due to my vacation, which was not one of those relaxing sit on a beach reading type vacations) and my bookmark fell out leaving me completely confused as to where I had been. Plus, it had already been renewed once at the library, and I don't like to renew things more than once except in really unusual circumstances. So I'll just try again later on that one.
Instead, I picked up Dave Gross's Prince of Wolves which is the first of the Pathfinder fiction novels from Paizo. Dave Gross wrote a novella (I'm guessing, I didn't get the wordcount or anything) in six parts in a recent adventure path, then wrote another smaller bridge piece on the Paizo website for these two characters that star in the novel. I was quite impressed with Gross's style and craft. He's a good writer with two distinct character voices that are both excellently done. I've said many times before that I'm wary of game fiction, but at the same time, I've really got my hopes up that this is going to be much better than most of the competition in the field.
Speaking of Pathfinder fiction, I'm almost certainly not going to do the Pathfinder short story competition after all either. I was actually really excited to do so, but the timing was terrible. I had thought that a massive two week vacation right smack dab in the middle of the four week window that we had to work on it wouldn't throw me off, but I failed to account for how busy I was getting ready to go on vacation, how busy I actually was while on vacation, and how busy I've been since getting home trying to catch up on everything I missed. Technically I'm not giving up... I'd still like to do something, but I've realized that realistically I probably won't have any shot at all at hitting the deadline. It's only a week away, and I'm still struggling to get a plot outline together that really "snaps."
I'll probably still write something anyway, once I can get time to get a good plot together (because I think for this kind of fiction, a good plot it essential--I'm already quite happy with the characters that the scenario) but it'll probably be later, and I'll probably just post it online somewhere.