A warm, playful wind has been buffeting the trees and pushing clouds about the sky all week. I’ve been buffeting my brain and keeping my hands full of words.
For A Fall of Diamonds, wrote character arc notes and now have at least 3 new scenes to write and a way into each. Scene planning is proving fruitful. I hate sitting down to write with a head full of ice, like the plains of Antartica.
Today is edit day for my most recent scenes for A Haunting of Roses. I’ve restricted my editing to once a week on Sundays where I read over the scenes I wrote during the week, edit and make notes and figure out exactly what the scene is about. While writing I’m all too aware of the flaws and lacks, but the point is to get it down and keep moving. I think about that scene in Pitch Black where the survivors of the spaceship wreck must run the gamut in the dangerous dark strung with a few lights to keep off the voracious creatures populating the planet. Their lights had limited power so they had to keep moving. That’s me. If I pause, my savage internal editor will eviscerate me like those clawed, vicious creatures in the movie so I keep my hands full of words to light my way from sentence to paragraph, and on Sundays I can look at what I wrote. I wrote an AHR scene on Friday that lacks emotional punch so I’ll be looking at it today.
Sunday is also my short story workshop day when I fiddle with whichever piece of short fiction tugging on my mind. These 3 articles, https://tinyurl.com/n8zwnnx, https://tinyurl.com/kuyukbf, and https://tinyurl.com/l9xuvs8 written by Michelle Knowlden at ocwriters.network are the lights in that particular darkness.
Time to get to work.
Yesterday’s plot meeting with two writer friends cleared the debris cluttering my mind about A Fall of Diamonds and I’m ready to pick up the writing again.
It’s all about emotion, the engine that drives my characters through their actions, yielding consequences that must be explored.
How do you consume an elephant? In small bites. I realized, reading through my summary, each paragraph, each sentence opened up whole chapters of story that I would have to break into scenes and refine those scenes into the emotional beats that would carry the reader through the book.
A Fall of Diamonds is only one of what I know will be two books, possibly three, a trilogy. A daunting challenge for me, but I’m taking it on.
This morning a warm wind blusters through the freshly-leaved branches of the pecan tree, the young leaves flutter, the squash plants lift and sway, boxed about by the wind, the lacy branches of the tree near the shed bob about, the birds call, the wind wooshes, the air is scentless. A dull light suffuses the sky, gray and sunless.
It’s seven o’clock. I’ve got my coffee, Trader Joe’s Monsooned Malabar, a gift from my best friend, there are no TJ’s in Alabama. I plan to write as much as I can today. Tomorrow I’ve a plot meeting via FaceTime. A Fall of Diamonds has been at rest for the past week. I’ve got plot issues I hope to resolve during the meeting.
I’m very happy about my progress with A Haunting of Roses, writing 3,215 words this week, but I want to hit a higher benchmark.
Seeking a way to make aspects of the plot for A Fall of Diamonds work together. The ideas I’ve got are good but the edges are jagged so I can’t get a smooth joining yet I feel they can work together. I found this article inspiring, and the points made me think, https://tinyurl.com/mjrwbma. The first point the writer, Betty Krasnik, makes, “Take the risk and choose the bolder choice, even if it seems there is no way it will work.” certainly applies to what I’ve done already by trapping one of my main characters between a rock and a hard place where he has no control over the rock and the hard place can ruin him. I’m trying to combine that particular idea with another “between rock and hard place” idea. I have a resolution but my resolution throws a monkey wrench into the logic and continuity of the plot and I’m trying to blend the rough, raw edges so that it all works out, but still causes more trouble. My characters are not out of the woods yet.
Spring in southeast Alabama is lovely, dulcet weather, occasional rain, and everything is blooming. Yesterday I did my writing in the backyard beneath the pecan tree. Might do that again today too.
Did a guest blog for Black Fox Literary Magazine, “The Quarrel” at
The Winter Issue No. 15 is available at http://www.blackfoxlitmag.com.
Feeling much better about Runaway Heart–giving it a cooling off period and will look at it again later, in a month or so.
Meanwhile, I’m focusing on A Fall of Diamonds, writing my way into Part II, fingers crossed that it will go well.
My ladybugs arrived yesterday and I released them at dusk into the box garden, shook a few into the large planter pot on the porch, gave a few to the pepper plants near the back fence, and the last of them to the tomato plants. They eat malevolent pests. So far the garden is looking very good anyway, but I’m sure there are nasty pests lying in wait to devastate my bell peppers, spinach, squash, scallions, tomatoes and melons. Ladybugs to the rescue!
Spring time in southeast Alabama is lovely–the days are pleasantly warm, everything blooms, and I’ve seen more birds of all kinds than I ever saw in California. Robins, bluejays, and this morning I spotted a red-headed bird sitting on the branch of a tree in my yard. It was of medium size, had a dark brown body. Don’t know what kind of bird it was. There are so many birds in the trees and they sing all day. I’m tempted to take up bird-watching so I can properly identify them.
Now that spring has sprung, those brazen squirrels are scampering in my pecan tree. They’re back! I’m hoping, when the time comes, enough pecans fall so I can get some.
I’m having another crisis of doubt about Runaway Heart. I don’t know if I should keep working on it (rewriting the finished first draft) or let it take its place in the failed novel club. Is it worth the work of a second draft when it keeps falling apart?
I keep running into trouble as I try to rewrite it. I’ve been writing it and A Fall of Diamonds on alternate days, devoting one whole day to each. Today is Runaway Heart, but I’m dragging my feet or rather not placing butt in chair and opening the file. I mopped the bathroom floor instead hoping that a mindless task would bless me with a way to go on writing it. The bathroom is clean and shiny; the manuscript is not.
Think I’ll let A Fall of Diamonds have today.