Chad Schimke

About Me

Display Name

Chad Schimke

Twitter Handle



What's New

My Progress

Update for 7-9-20

I dove into this project and neglected to include a couple of things when I developed my write-a-thon goal. 

I needed to completely rework the last third of 90,000 words. In other words around 30,000 words.

After reworking, I uploaded everything to my paperwhite. I read through and notated where corrections were required. All of those changes were added back into MS word.

Up to today (7-9-20), the above has been completed. The following are my next steps.

I will read through all my handwritten notes again. There are at least 3 scenes which come to mind before doing that. Reviewing notes yields more. At the end of this, I will have developed a scene list of 3 or more scenes, which need to be drafted out. Those are interjected at the appropriate points.

Now that the entire 90K is shaped up, the revised MS word docs are uploaded to my paperwhite and my smartphone. I play back on text to speech while following along on the paperwhite. If there are any markups, I pause the playback, make notes, and repeat.

The book is really smoothed out by this point, when I will decide to do about beta readers, or submit to an open call with a publisher. I have also printed out and read hard copies at this stage, but they are clunky and unwieldy.

What I Write

Writing Sample

Aislinn stood on the cliff at the edge of her continent. Her gown flapped in the gentle breeze, air brushing her feet and legs. The Niharan sun hung low on the waterline, a rim of churning water, against a darkening blue sky.

She inhaled the salty air through her nose, filling her lungs. Every synapse and neuron fired excitedly. She felt surprise upon touching her cheek, and felt her face unprotected. She wasn’t wearing a mask and couldn’t remember a time before they were mandatory.

Under the over crop, surging waves roiled. Peaked white caps of the Suhalian sea crested and crashed onto costal rocks. A waterworm rode with an undulating motion, as a giant seafaring ship approached the dock below her. A flock of dragonflies buzzed past skimming the water.

Movement across the sea caught her eye. It shocked her at first to see the floating ship, as the obsolete design had become prohibited long ago. She’d read about them, and seen the clips, but never so close. Hundreds of her race used to live on floating cities, free of rules, hidden from prying eyes.

She discerned greater detail the closer they drew up to the coast. Housing goods and services, all in one place. The artificial island was arranged around a temple, with roads which radiated from a central square. Conversations overlapped with faint music and laughter. The spire of the Contemplum, with its smooth white walls decorated with rosette windows, glittered in the sundogs which danced across the sea.

She examined the opening, where she stood, which emerged from a crack in the rocks. A serpentine path wound upon itself, but seemed level and wide, other than a succession of hairpin turns. It lolled, from the overhang to the beach, far below her. She’d be exposed on the sheer cliffside. What if wind shear caught her at just the right angle, and she lost her balance? To go down there, it meant bracing herself against the swift breeze, which could gust sharply sometimes. But she’d dreamed of walking the decks of a sea cruiser forever.

As her gown whipped around her, she stuck her toe outside the opening, and took her first step down the path to the dock below.

What I Write

Dark speculative fiction: science fiction, horror, dark fantasy, weird, post-apocalyptic, historical, paranormal, noir.


“Hallowseve”, Psychopomp Halloween Special, Artifice Comics: 2013

“Midwinter”, Psychopomp Christmas Special, Artifice Comics: 2013

“Behind the Walls”, Enter the Rebirth anthology, TANSTAAFL Press: 2018 

“Vivified”, Tales for the Camp Fire anthology, Tomes & Coffee Press: 2019

My Write-a-thon Goals

Writing Goals

I will word process and play back via text to speech a 100,000 word novel. This will be completed successfully between June 20 and July 9, 2020. I can dedicate to it full time, with some extra time if needed around those dates.

Fundraising Goals

This is Clarion West’s largest annual fundraiser to support free/ paid classes, staff, and their six-week summer workshop.