Tuesday, August 26, 2008

It's nearly that time again....

I have run into a distressing number of people lately who are basically telling writers 'my way or not at all.' They say this even when 'their way' has nothing to do with other person's needs or wishes. The problem is that these people tend to 'yell' louder than others, and draw more attention, and people listen to them because they either offer an easy answer or because they're so pretentious people who don't know any better think they must really know something.

The real problem, I think, is that these loud people are purposefully blind to others. They want the world to run in their way, and to their needs, and the best way to do that is to convince everyone else that theirs is the only answers. They're generally pretty impolite to people who don't agree with them, too. Which, okay, doesn't always bring out the best in me, either. I know it, and sometimes I don't care.

NaNo is coming. Yes, this is related to the stuff above. The moment NaNo starts being mentioned in some places, it's bound to draw all the fury of the 'I am an ARTIST not a HACK' over-the-top reactions from people who know this isn't for them, and therefore it can't be good (or fun, for that matter) for anyone else.

NaNo is fun, it's exciting, it's a good way for some people to get going on their writing, and it has absolutely no affect on anyone who does not take part. It's not the death of literature. Most of the people who join in won't finish, and those who do will mostly share their work with their friends -- and those who hate NaNo will never even see it. A few will go on to rewrite and work on their novels and hone them into something far better than the quick, first draft they've written.

But that part doesn't matter. People are not required to rework their stories. If thousands of people spend their November writing just for the joy of it, it will no more affect your life than it would if they all took up skydiving.

What others write cannot affect what you write. Only you can do that, and all the pretentious hand-wringing and cries of dismay that the NaNo people dare to call themselves authors, and dare to claim to have written anything is the only affect it really has on them. They're doing it to themselves because it is oh-so-elitist to show how they would never stoop to something so plebian.

My usual thought is 'So go write and shut up. Prove how superior you are... and we'll just go on having fun.'

We have about two months until NaNo, and some of us are looking forward to the sheer fun of it. Time to start checking the subconscious for characters, dusting off half-formed ideas, and begin lining it all up!
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Wednesday, August 20, 2008

The Book is Done!

The book has been done for a couple days, in fact, but it's taken me that long to recover and get my brain back into some sort of working order. And actually, it's not completely done. Russ is reading it for me to help with some editing and to help put together an index. Then, off it will go! And I'll be done with it! Yay!

I am now working on the last run through on Silky 2, which should have been done before now, but had to be put aside or else I wouldn't have gotten either book done. Silky 2 is moving along very well now. I'm glad I didn't push it, because I've found a few places that needed considerable work. I've added quite a bit already.

But here is a little section from the first chapter that I really like:

"Oh, do watch yourself, my lord." Queen Maris leaned forward and this time
Garver sat back, his face paling just a little, and his hands fluttering as
though he expected her to leap forward and attack. "Do be very careful of
what you say in my presence. I have put up with a great deal of your
boorish bad manners in the last year, and I have decided this is the last
warning you are going to get. I brought you to my palace this morning
because you made statements last night in the presence of foreign dignitaries,
and they found your statements both outrageous and even treasonous. They
came to me to tell me of such things -- this from people who are not even my
subjects. I am inclined to think you are only stupid -- don't glare, Lord
Garver, because treasonous is not entirely out of the question yet since that is
the other choice. Am I clear on this, Lord Garver?"

I've already written about 4k on a new outline as well. I really didn't need to start a new outline, but I had used some bits of it for examples in the nonfiction book, and I decided I wanted to see where it would go. I think it is going to be a NaNo book if I can work my way through the rest of it.

I just spent this morning trying to get caught up on the extra little DAZ work I need to do. I have to start working on the next newsletter, but that shouldn't be too bad. I just have to get my mind around the items for this week and figure out what pieces could go with them.

And they are trenching out in my alley today. They supposedly have all the underground stuff marked, but I keep expecting to lose power or Internet. Life works that way for me. I'm just curious why they had to mark the underground stuff all the way from the front of my house back to the alley. I sure hope they don't intend to do more than dig up the alley!

Okay, it's time for me to get back to work. I have other things I need to get caught up on as well, but mostly I'm going to go back to work on Silky 2!
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Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Going well!

The book is over 60,000 words and I still have a bit more to write, so all is going well there. Russ was supposed to come home this weekend, but it looks like we'll have to wait for Labor Day weekend instead. As things go lately, that's not so long a wait.

I've been doing a lot of research for this book, pulling out a number of favorite nonfiction books from Matt Ridley's Genome to J. Bronowski's The Ascent of Man. I haven't looked at that last one in a long time, and I'd forgotten how readable and fun it was. I think I'm going to put it aside to re-read after I get other things done.

I've also been listening to one of the Barnes and Noble Portable Professor collections -- this one on Ancient Rome. I had listened to part of it before and I really loved it. Last night, I took it into bed and listened to the first two lectures, and it was wonderful. We have a large collection of these types of things, most of them on American History (Russ's favorite), so I'll likely be listening to quite a few for a while here. It was interesting, with the lights off and the head phones on, and to have nothing at all distracting me from what was being said.

Learning things is always so much fun.

I've still been walking most mornings -- though not this morning because of a major storm. I am, however, working at switching my days around so that it's not the last thing I do before I sleep, but rather the first thing I do when I wake up. This is a big change, and I don't know if I'll like it. If not, I'll just go back to night work. I just figure it doesn't hurt to switch things around now and then. The good thing about doing much of my work at night is that there are no distractions at all... except for the cats and an occasional storm. Day time has noises, birds in the yard, mail going by... and things I could be doing rather than writing.

Maybe I need to have some of those other things. Maybe not. We'll see.

Anyway, back to the book. I'm working in the last few pieces and then I have to look at the ending piece again, because I really don't think I like it. I may still pull a couple thousand words and do something different.

I think it's turned out to be a good book. Let's hope the publisher thinks so as well! Though, having mentioned this work to one other publisher has gotten that one interested, so maybe all will not be lost anyway!

I've still be walking most mornings. Couldn't go yesterday because of a storm, but I've already been out for a walk today. It was a great day for it, too. Lots of lovely pictures, including the one I posted here. I just got back, and I think I'm going to go back to work on some writing.
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Friday, August 01, 2008

Closer to done!

Hello. Yes, back already! I thought I'd just write some notes out during the day as they occur to me, and then post later. Maybe.

Today's work is divided between the DAZ Studio PC Newsletter and the nonfiction book. It's only 10:30 am and I've already been bouncing back and forth between them. Keeping focus is difficult some days... but I did finally have a breakthrough on the newsletter. That's always good.

The newsletter takes a lot more imagination and writing skill than you might expect for something so short. I'm handed the three files with the items so I can test them out, and I edit the pages on the site as well -- which actually helps, because it allows me to start thinking about them a few days before I have to do the work. Sometimes the newsletter items are all related, and I can do a little 'story' with them. I also choose four older items to go with the material and write a single line for each, linking them back to whatever item it is related to. The only other part is a short paragraph on the render challenge of the month, and pick out two pictures from the last week to showcase there. I also grab pictures for all the items, something out of the gallery, and a few other odds and ends. Then I put it all together and I'm done for a couple days until the new stuff comes out.

It's not a lot of writing, and the html is pretty easy stuff once you get the template done. It's fun, in fact, most weeks.

Oh look, it's actually the next morning. I guess I'll post this in a few minutes and get to work on other stuff! Or maybe I'll get other things done first. (grin) FM is now updated, and a huge amount of updates to the County site are done, and I even managed some work on the book.

I am looking forward to having the book done, which I think is going to happen in the next couple days. I have a large section I'm still debating -- about 3k words -- that might come out, but that's still not a lot more writing even if I have to replace it with something else.

It's coming down to the end, and my mind is already starting to leap over to the idea of finishing a couple fiction pieces. That's probably not good -- I need to focus on the last of this book. But I'll get there!

And I think I'll go ahead and post this before I think of any other boring stuff to write!
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