Friday, September 23, 2005

The Novelist Thing

There have been many times during the writing of this book when I have thought that my worst fear about my writer self may turn out to be true. I may not be cracked up to be a novelist.

As I've mentioned before, my book has many short stories woven in with the primary story. Not just subplots (in fact, not subplots at all) but complete, chapter length stories. These stories are the only kind of fiction I'd ever written up until I started the book, and it was always been my deep dark worry that I couldn't write something longer than fifteen or twenty pages. As I've been trudging through the middle of this book, where each page has required grand effort, I've heard a little voice telling me that there's a reason why it's not coming easily. The voice speaks a little louder whenever it's time to start one of the new short stories within the story. The voice screams: "Look how happy you are to be starting this next little diversion! Look how fun this is!" And I have to admit that the voice is right. It DOES make me happy to write those little bits. It IS fun. And maybe that means I can't do the bigger story, and I'm not ever going to be a novel writer.

Or maybe it just means that writing a novel is harder for me than writing short stories, which I've been doing since I was seven. Imagine that.

A & I have another wedding tomorrow. Photos to come next week.

Monday, September 19, 2005

Autumn, here.

i do so love pink

Autumn here is like spring.
Easter colored things grow.
Rainboots arrive on store shelves and are swiftly scooped up.
The air smells of warm earth, about to burst.
There's a chill, but it feels less like the end of something and more like the beginning.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

This Day

Originally uploaded by sweetmondaygirl.

The man whose office is next to my cubicle often speaks a different language, but I don't know which one.

I wish that oranges were able to be eaten as delicately and easily as apples.

I've been alone a lot this week, and was supposed to accomplish many things, things like writing twenty pages and making something with the Gocco and picking out recipes for the next month from my sadly underused cookbooks.

Instead I accomplished very little. I'd like to say that I spent my (not accomplishing stuff) time frolicking joyfully and relaxing fully and giving myself pore cleansing facials so I would feel pretty and girly.

But no. I slept.

Thursday, September 08, 2005

The Bright Forever

I'm reading a good book right now (similar in theme to THE LOVELY BONES, for those of you who have read it) which is reminding me of some clever ways to build tension in a story. This is going to be absolutely critical in my novel, and I'm still figuring out how best to do it. I love that feeling I get when I'm reading something and the pieces slowly start to come together and I find that I have goosebumps.

When I finally have someone read this draft or the next, probably a year from now, the first thing I'll be asking when they're finished is if there were any goosebump moments.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Beyond Quantity

In telling myself that in this first draft of the book, I need only get the story down, get the pages out, DO IT, I believe I've let myself slack a bit where quality of writing is concerned. The past few weeks in particular, I've noticed that as long as I write a page each day, I think I've done my job. Nevermind if it's not a page I'd be willing to let my six year old sister read, let alone the world at large.

Some small part of this is necessary. If I were to write the way I always have up until I began this novel, it would literally take me years and years to get it all down, and most likely it would simply never happen at all. I'm usually incredibly picky about every word I write, the result of equal parts perfectionism and the deeply rooted desire to not have to do a second draft. Ever. With this book, I knew from the get go that I would be writing a second draft, which was terrifying at first, then quite freeing, and now downright dangerous.

I had dreams this weekend, both while sleeping and while awake, of writing lovely, meaningful passages for this story. The goal this week is to focus on making that a reality again.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Smoke Meat

If you're not already, you should be reading the story my dad is writing online. There's a lot of catching up to do for new readers, but it's well worth it. The latest chapter puts me at a loss for words.