Getting the Right Wrong

As a kidlette I read a lot.  Since I was reading at an adult comprehension level when I was seven, there was very little Dick and Jane in my life, and a lot more Hell at 50 Fathoms, which I read at least a dozen times before getting out of the 6th Grade.

The one genre I was into, however, was science fiction.  I got my hands on most of the Golden Age authors and bought their books, read them cover to cover again and again, and went looking for more.  There was something awe inspiring to live in that time and know your book store would soon carry the new Clarke, the new Asimov, the new Heinlein, the new Ellison . . .

There was something that the writers back then spoke of when talking about science fiction and fantasy.  It was known that some of the things they wrote about were, perhaps, going to never come about.  There were items and subjects and characters that might not ever be anything but words on the page.  And they knew this, because–hey, writers, we make stuff up, right?

The trick, they said, was to follow your internal logic, and to keep your rules consistent.  If your technology could only do A, B, and C, you damn well better not have it do E at some point.  As David Gerrold once point out, if you write your story so that people can only use their right hands, then you damn well better now have the hero save the day at the end of the story by using their left hand.  Anything that plays hard and loose with your internal logic, that violates your rules and laws, it cheating that would make Lance Armstrong say, “Dude!” while giving you the stink eye.

When you’re writing anything–not just science fiction, but anything that requires some “facts” to come into play–it’s always best to do your research and make certain when you’re setting up your premise, you are working with something that not only makes sense,  but is also something that can’t be taken as complete bullshit.  Given what we know about space flight these days, it’s difficult–if not impossible–to write a story about some kids cobbling a rocket together in an abandoned field and flying it into orbit.  Oh, sure, you can adjust the rules of your universe and all that, but you best make certain that is spelled out so people don’t scratch their heads and go, “Huh?”

I’m in a few groups on Facebook where I hear and see about new novels and stories from people like me, writers who hope this will be our job one day.  I saw something like that the other day:  a new book, by someone I know.  I’m checking out the blurb, and right off the bat, I see something stated as a major plot point–

That is totally, scientifically wrong.

Now, I do things with time travel and faster than light space drives.  I can hand wave with the best of them, and I always try to keep my facts straight when I do this.  If my ships go this fast, I find out the distances between two stars and calculate travel times.  That’s how you do things.  When you’re stating as fact something that can be fact checked on any number of databases as all sorts of wrong, you’ve pretty much ruined the story for me–and probably for a number of readers as well.

Your stories live and die by facts and rules.  Create your rules based upon the first, and never violate the later.

Otherwise, you could find yourself becoming the Next Big Internet Meme.

 

Reliving the Good Old Bads

There are times when I take too much enjoyment in what I write.  Doesn’t happen much, because I like to keep things in the real, but with my newest story, I find myself thinking about a time when I wasn’t at my happiest, and how I thought times might get better, but probably wouldn’t.

In other words, I’ve been thinking of The Undisclosed Location.

Last year at this time I was away from home, taking up residence in a strange town, and starting work at a strange company.  It wasn’t the best situation at the time, and I wasn’t happy about having to uproot and spend so much time away from that which I found familiar.  I did my best, I tried to get through each day–not always with success, I should point out–and I wrote.  I wrote a lot.

The worse thing about the place was the people.  The company felt cold and impersonal, the people unfriendly and too eager to guard their own little ponds of power.  I’ve seen this happen in other companies, but here it was so blatantly obvious that it was impossible to ignore that you, yes you, were always going to be looked upon as an outsider for you entire stay.

Needless to say, I didn’t have a good time at this company, and with having to maintain two abodes and travel back and forth on the weekends, I actually lost money on the deal.  My loathing for the place was so great that when 10/11/13, a Friday, rolled around, and I was told that my position was being eliminated, I wasn’t upset in the least.  I couldn’t get out of there fast enough, actually.

My main male character in Suggestive Amusements is a person who doesn’t like what he does and doesn’t care for the people he works alongside.  He would rather be a writer, which makes him sound like me, though I’m certain that’s just a coincidence.  He is constantly reminded that his life is in something of a dead end, and if he could move away from his graphic design work and into tale telling for a living, he’d happily leave that old life behind in a moment.

As I started writing about what happens to Keith next, a few weeks after Erin the Muse comes into his life, I find that I’m getting into his life at work, and in particular his relationship with his manager, I began tapping into some residual feelings I have concerning my former employer, and the people I’ve worked on.  It is said that, as a writer, you should write what you know.  I guess I’m knowing too much about what I didn’t like, and it’s showing.

I know I shouldn’t take that personally, then let it show up as attributes in my characters; I shouldn’t allow them to live out the things I may have wanted to do from time to time . . .

Then again, there is always a bit of us that shows up in our writing.  Sometimes it’s an experience, sometimes it’s a life event.  You can’t avoid it–

We have to write about everything:  it’s why we’re writers.

 

Not the Characters You’re Looking For

Last night was an off night; I was busy doing other things, and getting over the cold that was trying to force its way back into my life.  I think I’ve beaten the cold–again–but give it a few more days when the temps are back down in the teens and I can’t warm up to save my life.  Such is winter in Chicago:  one day it’s in the 60’s, the next it’s in the 30’s and snowing.

I was chatting with a friend about the current work in progress, Suggestive Amusements.  I was saying that this story felt different to me, because it doesn’t fit in with any of the things I’ve developed before now.  The characters are new, the situation is new, it’s taking place in a universe that’s pretty much ours.

The story has felt a little strange for me, because I’m not dealing with characters I know; I’m dealing with unknowns.

Allow me to put this in context:  a few of my stories tend to exist in universes that are expandable and wide-ranging.  I’ve spent a lot of time getting to know the characters, to make them living, and then make them a big part of those worlds.  To say I spend a lot of time developing things is something of an understatement.

Suggestive Amusements is different.  It’s an idea turned into reality, but everyone seems a bit . . . distant.  It’s like you’re watching a scene from afar, and you’re never actually part of the action.  The characters are new, they are shiny–they seem a little incomplete.

It’s a strange thing to create characters for a world that might be a one-off, something you write one time and then never visit again.  I’ve not done that very often–or have I?  When I think about it, more than a few of my stories have been this way.  Why would this story be different?

Hell if I know.  This is the way my mind works, I guess.  It starts setting up barriers when I hit the twenty thousand word mark, I suppose.  I’ve taken more time off with this story than I have with any other, and it makes me wonder if I think it’s worth while.  Good old writer’s doubt, kicking me in the butt again.

There was an info graph I saw a while back that showed the various stages of writing.  You always start out fresh, thinking your story is the greatest ever, and somewhere in the middle you convince yourself that it’s the biggest piece of crap to ever be fostered upon the world.  The person I was chatting with last night said she felt as if she was putting “poop on the page,” and was discouraged by her output.  I felt the same way at times; I think I’m feeling sort of that way now, even though a few days ago I liked what I was writing.

I wonder if this is common, that during the course of telling a story, you fall in and out of love not only with the story, but with the act of telling your tale.  It wouldn’t surprise me, because writers are mysterious creatures, almost as unfathomable as muses, and twice as complex.

After all, we have to suffer for our work, right?

 

The Starving Soul

The cold is trying to come back; I can feel it.  I actually felt it last night, sneaking about in the darkness of the bedroom right before I headed off to sleepy-time.  Pain in the ass, it is, but I’m not going to let it get me down . . . even though it’s doing its best to do just that.

But to hell with the cold.  I’ll beat it one way or the other, and tomorrow the Chicago area will find itself somewhere warm, with the temps getting up close to seventy.  Changing climate?  Shirley you jest!  (I know you saw what I did there . . .)

Chapter Seven was begun last night, and I was on a good run last night.  Had Yessongs playing on the computer, and I must have been in a great mood, because I was typing away with few distractions.  I’m at the point in the story where my character Keith finds he’s come home after an evening of sybaritic pleasure with the lovely Elektra, and discovers he’s written something—a lot of something.  Then Erin appears, they have a little back and forth about where she was sleeping, and then . . .

This is where I left off the chapter, almost thirteen hundred words from the beginning.  It was a fast thirteen hundred, too:  I did it in about fifty-five minutes, making this the quickest writing I’ve done in a long time.

The whole gist of the chapter involves what we do for work.  A couple of times Erin, the muse, tells Keith he has two jobs:  one that pays the bills, but doesn’t “feed his soul”, and another that allows him to engage in all the things he wants and loves.  This is nothing new for anyone who isn’t a professional writer; if you’re like me, and you write, you do so with the hope that one day this is all you’ll ever do, and you aren’t thinking about being crazy-ass Twilight rich, you’d be happy if you could knock down high five figures every year . . . though I will take the crazy-ass Twilight rich, because who doesn’t want to laugh at haters who come online just to tell you that the first five minutes of Up tells a better love story than your crap, because after your laugh you’re going to dive into a room full of money, Scrooge McDuck-style.  Haters gonna hate, right?

We all wait for that message that says someone has read your manuscript, and they found it worthy of publication.  It’s after this that you work your butt off to produce another work that will be published, and if and when that’s bought, then you write another, and so forth, and so on . . . and before you know it, people are on Facebook posting, “You’re book suzks!  You should stop righting, because your story is told better by The Host!”  At which point you either flip the computer off (not turn it off, but flip it off, if you know what I mean) and get back to your current work in progress, or you laugh and look for your bathing suit.

At some point you have to ask yourself:  would I miss a day of “work” to work on my story?  I have asked myself that question—

I know the answer.

Six of One Down

Last night, after almost three hours of writing, I finished Chapter Six of Suggestive Amusements.  To say it was a chore is something of an understatement; I was tired, my neck hurt, and it seems like I couldn’t concentrate on anything for more than a few minutes at a time.  It felt like the time I had a concussion and life was just one Memento moment after another.

Now, where was I?

I’m up into early novella territory at the moment:  twenty-two thousand, seven hundred twenty words over six chapters.  Not a bad little word count, if I may say so.  If I work out my math this gives me a final count shy of sixty-five thousand words, but I know there are a couple of chapters ahead where that count is likely to get bumped even more.  If I had to make any kind of guess, I’d say this is going to end up somewhere around the seventy thousand point, which is not a bad point to be.

The more I get into the story, however, the more I wonder about the genre.  I’ve finished a good scene that followed the aftermath of sex, and ended up with getting into something that, as I put it into the computer, starting making me wonder just how nuts most guys are.  (No spoilers, because I’m really the daughter of River Song and I take after Mummy.)  But it’s not a story where sex is a big thing–even though the story my main male character is suppose to work on is going  to be a bit of erotica in its own right.

It’s also got a bit of a fantasy vibe to it–I mean, you’re watching someone who’s suppose to be a Greek goddess-like creature crashing your party and telling someone to get their ass to writing–but it’s not actually fantasy.  Oh, sure:  you’re going to see the muse talk with a sister muse over a cup of coffee, but it’s probably going to look more like Training Day than Fables, though I won’t rule out the swearing of the former.

It’s this lack of solid genre that sort of puzzles me.  To me, I’m only telling a story.  To people buying–and they will . . . they better–they want to know:  is it science fiction?  Is it fantasy?  Is it erotica?

To me, the question becomes:  is it entertaining?  ‘Cause if it isn’t, that means it sucks, and who wants to read this crap?

I’m of the mind that this story is going to be full-on epublishing material.  Oh, sure, I can shop this around, but I’m starting to think that if I’m going to have stories that fall into categories that seem to be all over the place, I might as well throw it up into the epublishing cloud and let people have at it.

For the record:  I consider this science fiction.  You have a writer, you have a muse, you have a woman who’s getting friendly with said writer.  And there will be some scenes of fantasy, and things that you can’t explain.

There is a place in the sun for this story.  It’s right over there, as a matter of fact–

Transitional Positions at Night

This is coming to you after a somewhat late night, and a very early morning.  It was a long day yesterday, driving in snow and cold, entering data that was way too boring, then making my way back home.

I settled in to write, and I knew what I wanted to say–

But the body just wasn’t willing.

This week played hell with my schedule.  Today will also play a little hell as well, since I find myself having to run all over again.  But I have tonight to myself, no pizza or television or idiots wanting to argue things of which they know nothing.  Just writing.

Maybe I can finished the chapter.

I left my character together, still in bed, but this time sort of arguing about something that will eventually become the main plot of Keith’s soon-to-be novel.  Yes, the muse gave him something to work with; they are mysterious creatures, and to get your ideas you just might have to sleep with someone.  I know:  it’s a hard thing to do, but sometime you have to make sacrifices for the sake of creativity.

Even though I feel as if I don’t know what to say in my writing, when I’m saying the things that are now being written in Suggestive Amusements, the final product seems right.  Sure, I may need to go back ad polish a statement after I write it, only because the first time I lay it down I’m kicking it out of my head and forcing to lay shivering upon the ground, so when I have a moment to look it over and decide if it’s worth while, if it is, then I clean it up and give it a little polish, and maybe even a hug or two, just because I’m that sort of person.

That’s one of the reasons I don’t do huge rewrites when I’ve finished with my first draft.  I have the plot and most everything else down, so why start mixing things up?  I’m certain things will change one day for some story; I can’t be like this all the time.  For now, however, it works great.

I won’t say this is the best thing I’ve written, but it gives me a good feeling.  It’s from an idea I had years ago, an idea that I wrote a piece of fetish fiction around, and who know if there will be any more stories centered around this idea.  It’s the way ideas are:  you never really lose them: rather, they sort of hang around waiting for the time to come forth and allow you to use them for something good, great, even fantastic.

I was even thinking of another idea last night, between trying to write scenes for the current work in progress.  That’s me; can’t ever stop thinking about fiction.  One of the reasons I was awake so early this morning, when I so wanted to sleep in, was because something came to me about Elektra, one of my main female characters.  Something she likes; something that sort of drives her fantasies.

Yeah, I hate getting woke up like that.

At least it might end up in the story.

Bedroom Recollections

You want to get ahead; you want to keep pushing forward.  But this week–let me tell you, it seems like every time I turn around, there’s something in real life that’s keeping me from writing my next great novel.  Assuming that it’s going to be great . . .  Recollections

Still, you write.  I get on the computer and start putting words into the machine.  I left my couple in bed, making small talk, mostly about my main female character getting tired of where she lived and taking a job in Las Vegas.  Where do I go from there?

Well, I had a few hundred words to make my main male character feel a bit of envy.

See, my male character is a Las Vegas native.  Born there, schooled there, worked there.  His dream is to make it “big” as a writer and move the hell out, but neither has happened yet.  He’s starting to feel like a bit of a failure because he’s stuck in the City of Big Dreams and Drained Bank Accounts, and here he’s hooked up with a woman who one day said, “Screw it, I’m outta here,” packed her crap inside her car, and hit the road because someone offered her a job.  Good job, bad job:  it didn’t matter.  It was a job, and it wasn’t in New Mexico, so she said, “Yes”.

In a way I feel like my main male character.  I’ve lived in Red State Indiana my whole life, up in the northwest part near Chicago.  There was a time, years ago, when I wanted to move out, when I wanted to head west and keep going until I hit the ocean.  One time it was California, one time it was Seattle; these days I’d love to live in Portland, where I almost did have a job in 2006.

From time to time I do have a dream of getting the hell out of the state and heading towards the mountains, towards the desert, towards the forests, and not stopping until I see a lot of water standing in my way.  I feel as if I outgrew Indiana a long time ago, but one thing or another has kept me from moving on–

Maybe I’ve been waiting to hit it big.

Were it not for certain obligations, I think I would have blown this pop stand a long time ago.  Jean Shepard–he of A Christmas Story fame–grew up in Hammond, IN, so he’s mostly known as an Indiana Writer, and a number of his stories take place in northwest Lake Country.  A writing instructor once told me that they went to a reading Shepard gave on one of his infrequent visits to Indiana, and during the question and answer section at the end, someone asked him what his favorite part about returning to Indiana was.  The instructor told him his answer was, “Getting on the plane and leaving.”  Needless to say, he didn’t endear himself to anyone at the reading.

I’ve had moments where I’ve thought about getting “known” through my writing, then leaving the state, settling somewhere else, and having to field the requests to return to my old stomping grounds to talk about what it’s like to “be a writer.”  Oh, the things I could do, the things I could say, the trouble I could get into.

So I need to do a few things first for that to happen . . .

Of Late I Dream of White Sands

After a night of inactivity, I was back in the writing groove.  There were six hundred or so words written the night before, but I wasn’t feeling it–well, I should say, I wasn’t feeling it enough to be able to do the sex scenes I wanted to do.  I found myself part way into the hot and heavy, and then . . . Ugh.  It was time to rest my head.

Last night was a bit different.  I needed a few to get into the swing, with a few distractions along the way to make it even more exciting.  Sort of like, there’s sex–oh, look!  More sex–oh, look here!  Finishing up the sex . . . yeah, time to put on different music.

But what happened next?  Well, the blurb on my chapter card says, “Keith and Elektra Get to Know Each Other.”  Since I started out with sex, this means they get to know each other after the do the deed, and that means talking so someone doesn’t fall off to sleep.  So they started talking, and the question came up about Keith’s writing.  Elektra makes a comment, and Keith makes one, a little back and forth, and then comes up the question of why Elektra was at the same company, and how she arrived in Las Vegas because it wasn’t Las Cruces–

This is where it gets strange.

I didn’t give my thought to where Elektra was from.  I knew she wasn’t native to Lost Wages, but I didn’t know where she was from.  So, when I got to the point of her saying, “Because this isn’t . . .”, I knew I needed a place.  So I opened Google Maps and began to zoom out.  Where is she from?  What did she do?  What does she want?  Well, that last I have some idea about, but the other two–nada.

Then it hit me:  she’s from the desert.  From an environment like Las Vegas, but not.  Something hot and dry and . . . in the middle of nowhere.

New Mexico.  Hey, it was good enough for atom bombs and gigantic ants, so it’s good enough for my character.  I even had her starting in Alamogordo, because–giant ants.  From there she went to college at UNW in Albuquerque, then went to work in Las Cruces and, for a short time, Socorro.  After that it was time to move to the bright lights and big city, and she packed up her stuff and lit out for Vegas.

Which brings her to where she is in my story.My

This is how my mind works:  things just come to me.  The character didn’t speak to me; I wasn’t getting hints from Elektra directing me to have her start out in California, or Arizona.  No, that only happens to a few crazy people I’ve met on Facebook, who seem to think that their character control the story, not them–which is probably why these people are not always good about their writing.  I mean, if some part of your mind is actually controlling your story, where’s your incentive to be creative?

Tonight I get into the ideas in the dark.  Going to be interesting to see where that goes–

Not that I don’t already know.

The Hooks of Our Lives

Real life managed to get in the way of the fictional one last night, so very little writing was done.  I did begin Chapter Six, which begins with sex, and a little more sex, and just a touch of, “Yeah, there’s the goods, show me what you’re gonna do with them!” bravado that you see in few couples.  It was a great start . . .

But there’s something lurking in the back of my brain.  No, it has nothing to do with plastic wrap and strawberries; get your mind out of the gutter.  It has to do with a story–better yet, the story within my story that I’m writing.

One of the things I’ve considered for my main male character is what novel is he going to write?  I mean, that’s the whole point of having a muse show up and start bugging his butt about getting a story together.  Okay, sure:  so what is that novel going to be about?  It’s a pretty important plot point, don’t you think?

The drive home is always a good time to take what I’ve accumulated throughout the day and put it into practical use.  So it’s time for thought, time for ideas to get put out there and used and/or discarded.  Last night was no different, because I was thinking about this new chapter, and what was going to happen, and how two of my main characters might interact with each other.

In the course of this internal dialog, I decided that Keith, my main male character, would talk about his writing with Elektra, one of my main female characters.  Elektra would throw some ideas out there, and Keith would come up with versions already done of said idea.  However, a point would be reached where Elektra would say something, and Keith would examine what was said . . .

And go, “Hummmm”.

Thus an idea is born.  Not just for him, but for me as well.

The funny thing is, this morning I’m chatting with someone, and they bring up an idea which is pretty much along the lines of the idea I’d come up with last night, and there was this frisson that hits you when you realize that there are other people out there wondering if similar ideas can be done, but they might not have the ability to do them with acquit skill.

Right now it’s just an idea for a story within a story, not a story that will stand alone on its own.  But it is an idea that, perhaps, could become a story were I to do my research and flesh it out.  Not that don’t already have enough to do, but why not have some ideas ready just in case?

Creativity comes at you when you least expect it.  I had this idea last night, and then the same comes at me this morning–what are the odds?  Is it because my circuits are good, and karma is with me?  Or I just know what is going to work?

Or is my Muse somewhere near, while sex scenes play out on the page before me?

I know she’s road with me before, so I’m never alone . . .

Pen Monkey on the Back

Just so you know, it’s cold in Chicago.  We’re having something today that we haven’t seen in seven hundred and ten days, and that thing is what we used to call winter.  There was a time when the temps would always get down below zero and the Hawk would roar out of the north, and we’d bundle up and deal.  Yesterday it was like this, and people were losing their shit faster than Alex Jones on a good day.  But fear not!  It’ll be back in the twenties tomorrow, and before you know it it’ll be sixty in February, and people will start bitching about how there was no spring.

I was on the Skype with my therapist last night.  It was the first time since October that we’d met, and we had a lot of catching up.  But the one thing she wanted to talk about, the one thing she wanted to know—“How’s your writing going?”

If there’s one thing I’ve loved about my therapist, it’s that she’s always shown an interest in my writing.  She started laughing when I told her I’d written another novel over NaNoWriMo 2012, and told me she was hoping the two novels I have out trying to get published got picked up.  I told her of my plan to get four things published this year, either via the traditional route, or doing the self-publishing thing, where I put my work up against Japan: Exotic Erotica and Big Daddy’s Present, the last of which has nothing to do with Cat on a Hot Tin Roof.

One of the things she asked was, “Do you feel guilty if you aren’t writing?”  This is the first time anyone’s ever asked me that question, but it’s one that I know exists.  I’ve seen memes before where one of the signs that you’re an artist is that you feel guilty if you aren’t doing something creative.  I’ve read interviews where writers have said if they don’t get a few hundred words in every day, they feel as if they’re doing something wrong.

In the last few weeks I’ve begun to feel a bit guilty if I don’t some writing.  I’m not talking about blogging, either:  my blogs are my thoughts, my musings, so to speak, from day to day.  It also help me to continue developing my skills, to build upon what is there, and make it better.

But I also know the stories of writers who say, “If you have nothing coming to you, don’t force it.  Find something else to do.”  Read, draw, play with software, surf the net for porn.  Find something to do that keeps you in the groove, and let the writing come on its own.

I tried to keep from beating myself up these days.  There was a time when I felt as if I had to drag myself before the computer and slap those words into the system.  I still feel as if I have to do that, but I do it knowing it’s what I want to do, that I want to tell a story, and tell it the right way.  I’m not giving up these days, not like I used to.

Beside, I think I have fans.

And I don’t want to disappoint them.

Charting the Personal Timeline

Today is a busy day.  Not it’s going to be a busy day, but it’s busy.  I heard there is snow and ice on my route home, so tonight could be a little trick as I return to the wilds of northwest Indiana.  No big deal.  I’ll get home.

I’ll also be on the web speaking to my therapist, because I miss her and we have things to say to each other.  It’s been three months since I was on the couch, and our time together was some good stuff, and I’m looking to get back into a routine because, why not?  We all need a little routine in our lives.

Writing is a routine.  I didn’t get much done on Saturday, but Sunday I finished Chapter Five, got two of my main characters, Keith and Elektra (yeah, that’s really her name) together, and saw my muse vanish for the time being.  I ended up writing about twelve hundred and fifty words, and I have officially passed into the Country of Novella, where all the officials are corrupt, and are just looking for the right moment to throw your ass under the jail—usually after you don’t make your word count.

So all my players are upon the stage, with only a couple of bit players remaining to show up now and then to move the story along.  I’m happy with the progression, even if I’m seeing a fifty day time line for writing the first draft, with fourteen days behind me.  It’s better than saying it’s going to take sixty days to write it, which may have been more real at the beginning when I had no idea how big the story would become—and with my counts down and analyzed, right now I’m on the cusp of a sixty-three thousand word story that could, realistically, end up being sixty-five to seventy thousand words.

I almost always set goals for myself when I’m writing.  A thousand words a day; sixty-five thousand words for a novel; four stories published in 2013.  I do the same thing in stories; there are always things that are going to happen, and they will happen when they happen, so I never worry if something doesn’t happen, because it happens in its own good time.

When I was laying out my timelines on Saturday, the notion hit me that I probably have more to write than I can ever write.  If I write a novel every ninety days, and spend another ninety days editing it while working on another novel or novella, then I could publish two to three novels a year—assuming I did it all the self-publishing route.  I know that, for one series, I could likely do twenty stories, and when you do the math, that’s almost seven years of steady work to get those all published.  Which means I’d be in my early sixties before that work is finished—

If I start now.

Oh, this is what is known as job security, right?  The fact that I have a ton of work, and maybe twenty years to get it done.

The Windswept Silence

Late night for me, because I was out and about visiting, taking in pizza and movies, and staying up a lot later than I would normally.  In fact, when I realized the time, I hadn’t realized the time.  That’s how the evening went.

I was right about yesterday:  I didn’t get a lot of writing done.  About three hundred and sixty words, that was it, but it was the initial description of my other main female character for my novel, and that was what I needed to move on to the next part of Chapter Five.

But, once more, I got my motor running to go somewhere, and while going there and back, my mind was on a lot of things.  My Muse was on my mind; my story was on my mind; stories I haven’t written were on my mind.  It was all there, roaming about, getting down in my memories and making it known that I wasn’t going to forget anything.

Most of what I thought about were scenes from a story that hasn’t been written, but has been on my mind of late.  It has to do with having to do a duty that is both exciting and frightening, and once they’ve begun, the characters in question are presented with–call it an alternate reality of their lives.  Those the two characters have been together a long time, things happened in their past that pulled them away from people who they’d fallen for very hard.  And times and events and people being what they are, the characters were never able to reconcile these relationships, and therefore became somewhat haunted by the dreams of what could have been.

Each is given the opportunity to enjoy time with the “one who got away,” because, as one character is told, “You’ve always deserved to be happy.  Even if you are happy now, it is not the happiness you wanted.  You deserve to be with your one true soul mate; you deserve to be happy, even if for a little while.”  The character in question finds they are unable to disagree, because, deep down, they have always wanted that particular happiness–and even if they question how they are achieving the moment, they don’t care . . .

But, being me, you know they’ll end up in some kind of misery by the end of the story.  Actually they end up in some rather strange stuff at the end, but that’s also me . . .

I’ve thought a lot about happiness where it comes to my characters.  It’s easy to say that we all need to be happy, that we should have that one, great love that would make our lives complete.  It doesn’t always happen:  that’s pretty obvious when you look at the general human condition.  It’s not always possible, but we try.  And if we can’t try, we dream and fantasize.

Some of us take those dreams and fantasies and turn them into the stuff prose is made from, and then bleed upon our pages for the entertainment of others.

Because our silence is always the loudest.