Nita is in New York

I spent yesterday doing a final polish on Nita’s book including a lunch non-break at my diner where I ate comfort food and edited at the same time. I’m a multi-tasker, I can do that.

Today, Nita went to NYC via the internet, and I am back to digging through my old WiPs to see if I can find the chunk of You Again I lost. I’m bitter about that, I remember the stuff I wrote and it really opened up the book. Damn it. Still, the key fact here is . . .

I FINISHED A BOOK.

Yeah, it’ll need more rewrites, but by damn, it’s a whole book.

In other news, the Eastern US, especially New England, is about to get pounded by the split in the polar vortex, so I may be without power. If the blog suddenly goes silent, it’s not because I died (probably). Currently socking myself in with power packs, firewood, bottled water, and three dogs, and praying the power does not go out because my pipes will freeze.

I shoulda moved to Florida, not New Jersey.

143 thoughts on “Nita is in New York

  1. Congratulations on sending it off!

    Did you post the missing bit as part of your WiP sharing a while back? If so, the way back machine might have it.

    7+
    1. I don’t think so, I don’t think I posted any You Again at all, but that’s a good suggestion. I’ll go archive diving later.

      5+
      1. Might want to look at March 4, 2014 post. You have a screenshot of your files. Sorry, but I am using my tablet and can’t cut and paste the link. Good luck finding the files and congratulations on your new book!

        5+
        1. I have the You Again files, dozens of them. They just don’t have the newer stuff in them. Which is making me crazy.

          6+
      2. This one’s a bit obvious, so I’m sure you’ve done it, but perhaps a full search for all files containing a unique identifier (e.g. a character or place name) might turn something up?

        4+
          1. I hate to suggest it, but it might be on the hard drive of the laptop that you spilled coke in. If you still have that a computer repair store might be able to pull files from the hard drive even if the motherboard is fried. But then, you probably did that when the laptop drowned, so please disregard.

            1+
          2. I have the last one which is still working except the clicky part of the trackpad went out. I can get to that with a mouse.
            The one before that I did something to the screen, but it’s hooked up to a monitor so I can still get to the hard drive.
            The one before that I spilled coke in. It’s dead, the Genius Bar said so.

            2+
          3. I wouldn’t take the Genius Bar’s word for it; the machine may be dead, but it could still be possible to extract the hard drive and/or material on it. If you still have it, of course.

            0
      3. Jenny, would your editor have the original version? Just a thought and congratulations to you and me for another Crusie to look forward to. I’m not a writer but that could be another search. So not looking forward to this weekend we’ve been spoiled this winter on the east coast.

        3+
  2. Congratulations! And you’d love Florida — it is eternally weird here, which makes life always interesting. But small dogs and alligators/coyotes/bears don’t mix well, so I think your dogs are probably happier that you chose NJ.

    5+
    1. Had to laugh at your comment about small dogs. My sister lives in Jacksonville, not too far away from the coast and their house backs up to the watershed of a creek. She’s got two big galumphing dogs because they 1) can’t get through their heavy duty wrought iron fence and 2) are big enough to make the gators think twice. Which is not a joke as their next door neighbors had a 6-footer that basically moved in for a few months a couple of years back.

      5+
      1. :0 I live in Northern BC and we have bear, moose and deer regularly in urban area. But there’s something about an alligator that makes me shudder. I think it’s the eyes….

        7+
  3. Congrats and HOORAY FOR YOU!!!

    I mean, I’m pretty pleased on my own behalf, because new book! BUt YOU FINISHED IT! and all after starting it out of aggravation with an TV show. YAY

    15+
  4. I’m happy for you and ecstatic for us. 😉 Even more happy that you’re already starting on your next one. I continue to purge things and “tidy up” and every time I look at my shelf of your books and review each one, it’s always a keep. Another book soon to read (and read and read and read).

    11+
  5. Congratulations on finishing the book!

    Also, I seriously want those mashed potatoes and gravy. We’re in Ecuador, and we don’t have any diners. 🙁

    5+
    1. Chicken Marsala gravy. It’s my favorite comfort meal and the diner has it whenever I want it. I love my diner.

      9+
        1. It’s their version, which is much closer to chicken and gravy than the usual Chicken Marsala, but it’s chicken and gravy that’s full of Marsala, so it works.

          6+
          1. You really should. Once I get the house cleared out. Right now I can’t walk through it without stepping over boxes, but now that MY BOOK IS DONE I can start clearing that out. And bury the stuff in the snow.

            10+
      1. I made my version of chicken marsala with mashed potatoes for dinner Friday night, after this posted. And I was in a sharing mood so I blabbed about it to everyone I saw. Most of whom agreed that it was a great meal idea. The butcher who butterflied my chicken breasts was amused. 🙂

        My spouse is gluten and dairy free so I use rice flour and ghee instead of AP flour and butter. I actually measured stuff this time and it turned out ok. I’ve done better, I’ve done worse, by not measuring.

        0
    1. The thing is, there are pages of stuff about Alice and Charlie that are completely missing. I mean PAGES. I remember the scenes. Damn it.

      Organize your files, Argh People. Don’t be me.

      9+
      1. Wait, I think I remember those scenes. I think you posted some, because I read something about them. I remember being so glad to know that Alice grew up! Did she fight with her boyfriend? Was someone wearing green? Was she trying to decide if she wanted to get married or take the relationship further?

        I swears I read something on this blog from that book!

        3+
        1. Was there a breaking an entering thing? A car? A brick house?

          I can almooost recall the fight she had or the dilemma or the whatever. Sigh

          2+
          1. Here are some of the post names and tags. It goes all the way back to 2007, but I only copied a page:

            Fiction Archeology 2: Plot and Subplot in You Again
            March 6, 2014

            Fiction Archeology 1: Character in You Again
            March 4, 2014

            You Again and Again and Again and Again . . .
            AUGUST 22, 2013

            Self-Absorbed Musings About My Writing; Feel Free To Skip
            JUNE 20, 2013

            Previously in this Novel . . .
            APRIL 7, 2013

            Zoe’s Back and Toni’s a Goddess
            DECEMBER 2, 2012

            You Again Again, Part 3: The Scathingly Brilliant Idea
            NOVEMBER 15, 2012

            You Again Again, Part 2: What the Hell Is This Book About?
            NOVEMBER 13, 2012

            You Again Again, Part 1: Begin at the Beginning
            NOVEMBER 12, 2012

            4+
        2. I don’t think that’s YOU AGAIN — I could be wrong — but Jennie posted one opening chapter with Alice grown up and a lepidopterist. I see an entry for 22 August 2013 that does go into YOU AGAIN, but doesn’t say what she did with the files she was going through; just that there were lots of them.

          2+
  6. I caught some ghastly gastro bug that I suffered through last night. It dehydrated me so badly that I needed IV. This was good news to see now. Yay.

    7+
  7. Exciting news!

    And I imagine I am not the only person who would volunteer to store your backups on my hard drive! Sending magic “finding” energies to you to aid your search.

    4+
    1. There’s a thought: what about Time Machine? If you can remember when approximately you wrote those bits, you could time travel back to them. (I sincerely hope you use Time Machine, although I guess it’s easier with a desktop machine: I’ve got an external hard drive permanently attached, that Time Machine backs up to every hour when I’m using the iMac. I back up to a second hard drive periodically, when I’ve done a chunk of work – but that’s a bootable drive.)

      If you don’t use Time Machine, how about setting things up so that your fiction files get backed up to Dropbox whenever you close them? I do this with my Scrivener projects now, because I work on them on the iPad as well as the iMac; but I’m sure you could do something similar with Word files.

      4+
        1. You’ve probably already checked, but just in case: the web interface for Dropbox has a “show deleted files” option. I can’t remember how far back it goes, but I have definitely extracted lost things from it after non-negligible periods of time.

          3+
          1. This would be two years. Dropbox deleted files are there for 30 days unless you have a business subscription and then they’re there for 120 days. So nope.
            I’m hoping they’re on my two last laptops. (Yes, I am hell on laptops.)

            1+
        1. It’s a back-up program built into the Mac OS. When you ‘enter Time Machine’ it looks as if you’re gliding back through time. You can reopen any file in the state it was saved in at a particular time – for example, 11 a.m. on 19 May 2015.

          3+
          1. There’ll be similar programs for Windows, I’m sure (just maybe not with the fanciful animation taking you back through the galaxy). The brilliant thing is to have a hard drive permanently hooked up and set up the software to back up any changes to it automatically every hour or so, so you don’t rely on yourself remembering to do it. You can probably do something similar with Dropbox; but it would only be practical to back up some of your files there, not a complete internal drive.

            2+
          2. What I have right now is Dropbox and iCloud. So everything in Dropbox is backed up to iCloud which means that no matter which laptop (of the most recent two) I pick up, I get the same stuff. I love that.

            2+
  8. Yay! You finished a book; we have something fun to look forward to.

    The mashed potatoes and Marsala gravy look absolutely delicious, even though I just ate lunch, I want some!

    3+
  9. Happy dancing that you have another book done!!

    Hope you don’t lose power and praying that you’ll find the missing content! Is there any chance that the files are simply mislabeled? Saved as something neutral, like scene 1, or even using the wrong character names? Possibly in the wrong folder? Or saved to a mobile device that never got synced? Trying to help. May your search be fruitful & powerful.

    3+
    1. I’m wading through files now, looking, but since key word searches aren’t working, I think they’re not on here or Dropbox. So I’ll go looking on old computers. Sigh.

      5+
  10. Congrats, Jenny. And that Marsala gravy looks amazing.

    I’m just going to second St. Anthony.

    I’m not religious nor superstitious, but when I lost a Very Important Key a while back, a Catholic colleague suggested I say a little prayer to St. Anthony and light a candle for him. After a panicked week of looking, I finally took his advice and did both St. Anthony tasks sincerely. An hour later, I went out to my car, fumbled something onto the floorboard and had to stop to look for it. Guess what I found?

    Mind you, I’d looked in the car for the lost key a half dozen times before, but this time, there was the key tucked in a little crack between the seat the center console. Maybe after driving around it had gotten unstuck from wherever it had been, but the point is, coincidence or not, I found the key and to my great relief, never had to admit I’d lost it in the first place.

    I now have special place in my heart for St. Anthony (and a lovely pewter dragonfly where I hang all my keys).

    So when the electricity goes out, light an extra candle for St. Anthony, and tell him I say hi 🙂

    7+
  11. I’m stuck at the car repair place which wouldn’t be bad, except there’s a TV tuned to the most inane stuff I’ve ever seen, and these flashy people are excessively happy and LOUD. I’m losing my mind. (Ignore me. I want to go home and I’m bitchy, although not to the nice people who are fixing my car. I’m just bitching to myself and you.)

    ETA: Home again. So happy. But my god, that TV stuff was like a fingernail down a blackboard.

    14+
    1. Where I get Chemo has two large TVs tuned to game shows and soap operas. I have a “white noise” app on my phone and I just get my ear buds out, turn on the rain, and I can escape all of it. Plus people think you are listening to music and tend to leave you alone.

      4+
      1. Oh, god, chemo AND game shows?
        I remember being in the parking lot before chemo and swearing I could already taste the metal in my mouth. I know it helped save my life, but I really hope they find something else soon. That was just hell.
        So glad you’re feeling stronger!

        6+
        1. Hey, it wasn’t a news station, right? I mean, even game shows are better than certain news channels.

          1+
          1. I’m not sure. The game shows were just depressing. People desperate for money answering questions that didn’t mean anything. I finally put my fingers in my ears and looked at my laptop screen.

            1+
  12. 1. I’m so pleased you finished the book!
    2. You don’t want to leave New Jersey. It’s where your granddaughters live.
    3. you lit a candle for St. Anthony and found your purse out in the garden when you lived in Ohio. Try it again.

    7+
  13. Congratulations on finishing the book; wonderful news. And I loved the way it started, with you being irritated by a tv show. I think those odd beginnings can turn out something really special.

    4+
  14. Woo hoo! I’m thrilled that you finished the book. I love the sections you posted, and I can’t wait to read it!

    3+
  15. Congratulations on finishing the book! You can bask in the warm glow of your accomplishment as you deal with the weather. 👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻

    3+
  16. Finishing a book is the MOST amazing feeling. And I would imagine that after years of not being able to do it, it feels even better. I’m doing the Snoopy happy dance over here.

    And praying for the power to stay on at my house too, especially since they’re calling for it to be -14 here Sunday night (after the 12-20 inches of snow). I’ll move with you to Florida. I’m pretty sure my cats could take an alligator.

    6+
    1. Oh, god the forecasts. I have to go turn on the space heater in the basement tomorrow because we’re supposed to drop below zero (not quite as far as you) and that’s when I lose pipes. And this is supposed to continue pretty much through all of Feb and in to March. SO hoping that’s not true. It will get a little warmer again next week, but . . .

      4+
      1. Heat tape and insulation over the pipes. Best bet. Sometimes, after power loss, the insulation alone may do the job… for a day or so. Maybe.

        1+
        1. As long as the power holds, I’ve got a space heater in the basement. When the power goes, we’re screwed. It’ll be out too long and the temps are below zero. I can heat the house with the fireplace, but I can’t set fire to the basement.

          4+
          1. Yeah, if the power goes out, I’m screwed too. No fireplace, so no backup heat that doesn’t require electricity. There is antifreeze in the pipes for the forced hot water heat, but all the other pipes in the house will freeze. SIGH.

            I just vote for the power to stay on.

            3+
          2. It’s the ice that will take it out.

            When I was rehabbing the house (which of course is still ongoing) I had a safe firebox put in the old fireplace that was already here. It has an electric blower, but the house is small enough and the fireplace just large enough that it heats the living room, kitchen, front bedroom and bath, which is really all I need. I did that before I had regular heat put in. I’m asthmatic; if my lungs get cold, I die. And then there’s heart failure . . . I’m like a walking Australia. If I went back to Australia, all the deadly stuff there would just look at me and say, “Why bother? She’s on her way out anyway.” There’s a lot of power in that.

            7+
          3. A walking Australia! Oh, that made me laugh. Especially since there was a news story last week about a non-venomous Python crawling into bed with a 14 year old boy and trying to eat his hand. This week there’s one about a freelance crocodile hunter being called in by one of the town councils up north to catch a killer. That expectations vs. reality meme where both say “Everything in this picture can kill you” is not untrue.

            5+
  17. Congratulations on the finished book! I can’t wait to read Nita’s complete adventures. Good luck finding the lost files and staying warm this weekend. May there be no outages in your area or anywhere else.
    Meanwhile, best healing wishes to all the ailing Argh folks. And cheers, because now we’ve all got something to look forward to later this year. ;d

    6+
  18. Congratulations and congratulations to all of us who will soon hold a new Cruise book in our little, hot, greedy hands.

    Netflix added Lucifer so I said, “Let’s see where it all began.” And then I saw Tom Ellis. Then I forgot all about you. I had never seen him in anything. Yes, questioning life choices.

    It’s a testament to your strength that you were able to move pass his Tom Ellis-ness and find your story and that that story wasnt Tom Ellis fan fiction.

    What was this all about again? Right. You. Book.

    Thank you for finishing and may you find your lost chapters.

    I hate losing stuff but I love all the stuff I find in the process of looking. It’s like therapy, “so that’s where I put that memory, huh. Look at that.”

    9+
  19. Yay, BOOK DONE!!! Well done. I’m really looking forward to reading more of it.

    Coincidentally, I have also lost a chunk of an old thing I was thinking about working on. In my case, I know I have it somewhere on a floppy… but it might be better to just start again, different and better. I don’t have a zillion other files, there was only that one file, so I just have what’s still in my head. If that book is what I want to write next anyway. Just finished the proofs for Lent, due out in May.

    5+
      1. I was still using them until about six years and seven books ago, because I write in Protext, the best word processor in the world, and until then it wasn’t possible to get it to run on a modern machine. Then my friend Lindsay hacked DOSbox and since then it’s been nothing but good times, Protext running in the corner of my netbook and no more floppies.

        But that is an old book-idea, probably ten years or more.

        4+
  20. I knew you were going to write this book, so no worries, but bunches of cheering congratulations and ascending colorful balloons and unfurling noise-makers on wrap-up and send.

    Search of the outmoded computers, def. I personally send a small check – no, I don’t call it a bribe – to the local Carmelite monastery and an email request for prayer. That way both myself and the women thus housed are personally involved. Works. Sometimes in unenvisioned ways.

    My husband uncharacteristically is on the east coast visiting a sick friend, which puts him in the path of one vortex or another. I want him back NOW. Maybe I’ll call in the Carmelites.

    If a place in my town served chicken marsala on special-customer demand, we’d call that diner a cafe.

    4+
  21. Whoo hoo!! Congratulations!!

    Good luck finding the files, but also don’t let it dampen your celebration. Woot!!

    6+
  22. Yay for finishings the book. As a non-writer, It has been fascinating watching it evolve.

    Re: storm. I am heading to Florida and just passed a group of 20-25 utility trucks heading north in preparation.

    7+
  23. Congratulations! It’s so exciting! I hope you can find the You Again scenes. And that the weather doesn’t get as bad as the forecast.

    4+
  24. Yahoo! (That’s for the book!) Love those Crusies.

    Ugh for the weather. I don’t want the power to go out either. the last time that happened in the winter it did hundreds of dollars worth of damage to my heating system and flooded my bedroom.

    Do you think Saint Anthony could help me find myself? I seem to have gone missing .

    10+
  25. So happy for you, and for us!
    We’re also waiting for the storm. Since we’re close to the water it won’t be so cold. Cold enough, though.

    3+
  26. Congratulations! I’m over the moon for you and for all of your lucky readers. And I am certainly hoping you find the missing piece of You Again. . I know How frustrating that is.
    I went looking for something for my earthquake site on emergency lists to post on Facebook and I couldn’t find it to save my life. I finally got a keyword and found it that way. Wishing you a power-failure-free week.

    4+
  27. I doubt this will help, because I don’t see anything about Charlie, but I did print out 20 pages that you posted sometime within the past two years. The heading (at least on my printed copy) is “WiP: Haunting Alice Discovery Draft: Beginning.” The first sentence is: “Alice Archer surveyed the three human beings and one ghost in the room and decided the guy in the armchair was going to be the problem.” Characters in the first scene are Alice, Isolde, Ethan, a Betty Plumscott, and a ghost named Kimberley. When that scene ends, Alice, Ethan, and Isolde linger for awhile outside, talking together. This is followed by a brief scene between Ethan and Nadine (Nadine is Betty’s neighbor). Then we shift to Alice getting home. She talks with Dennis, then goes into the office where North and Carter are waiting. They talk about selling Archer House (NO, says Alice), and about North being sick. A day or two later, Alice, Ethan, and Dennis (traveling via bolster) start on a car trip. Alice is driving; it ends with her pulling out into the street, feeling annoyed with both of them, especially Ethan. The last line is: “It was going to be a long trip.”
    If this would be helpful, I can scan it on Tuesday (no scanner at home, but I can use the one at work) and email it (to the mollie at simple progress address or any other email address you like).

    3+
    1. Right, that’s an Alice novella. I have that one, but thank you so much for looking. I really appreciate it.

      This was You Again, Alice as a seventeen-year-old talking to Zelda and James about ghosts at Rosemore.

      4+
      1. Anything for you, sweetie; you’ve given me SO many hours of reading and rereading pleasure. I wish it had helped.

        3+
    1. Was there also a scene where Carter went to the gallery where Ethan rents a room to check him out and ends up checking out Nadine. Or am I transposing characters and that happened in “Faking It”?

      Oh. Also. I love this.

      0
      1. Yes, I think so. At least I’d planned to write that scene. I really have to dig through this stuff. That was like two years ago that I threw all those WiPs up there, wasn’t it? That must have been annoying. “Here’s a bunch of unfinished stories. Hope you’re not fond of endings!”

        2+
        1. Nope, it was “ooh, here’s a bunch of Jenny’s writing. Fantastic!”. I’ll admit endings would’ve been nice, but I was the opposite of annoyed by what we got.

          6+
      2. That was the intro for Stealing Nadine. They were running on parallel timelines, so it sort of felt like they were one book. I remember reading them at the same time, so it’s probably in the WIP area somewhere too.

        1+
  28. Yay! Congrats on Nita, that must feel so fabulous 🙂

    I’m sorry to hear about the AWOL bits of You Again, but sending you good ‘finding’ vibes.

    1+
  29. YAYYY!

    I’m with the “take the old computer to get it’s hard drive removed” gang. But don’t tell my husband because we have a significant portion of storage area devoted to what we call Wall-E land after the movie where he keeps many things that are broken and feels justified when every six months he can avoid spending $2 at the hardware store on a part he found there. This would just embolden him.

    Good luck! I hope you find it and it clicks still.

    2+
    1. I call my stash, “Gary’s Box of Mixed Electronics” after Glegg’s Box of Mixed Magic. I have many hard drives, power supplies, thumb drives, cables, cables and cables.

      0
  30. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9HPo2gdhveo is a YouTube video about preventing frozen pipes by leaving faucets dripping.

    I presume you already know about this, but it may help.

    Also, people yarnbomb lots of stuff in the out-of-doors — have you thought about yarnbombing your basement pipes just for a little better insulation?

    You may notice I am ignoring the book draft dilemma in favor of keeping you from freezing in a polar vortex. First things first!

    2+
    1. Oh, yarnbombing my basement. That might be kind of cool.
      Yep, I know about dripping faucets which may be in my future Sunday, at least. My weekend is going to be about dealing with the storm. Argh.

      3+
    2. I wish we could do something about the baseboard heating. Can’t open those up and let them drip – at least not as far as I know. They’ll be fine unless we lose power and then it’s a repeat of last year.

      Never had these problems when I lived in California. It got cold in the Central Valley, but the power only goes out in the summer there. (Well, actually it almost never went out at all.)

      I lose power two or three times a year. I swear I’m getting a generator after St. Anthony helps me find myself and some money.

      I’m laughing like crazy at MJ!

      4+
  31. Excited about the new book – your books have helped me escape a lot these last two years. I never seem to get tired of re-reading!

    Hoping that this storm is not as bad as advertised but my daughter who lives in Buffalo texted me yesterday that she had gone to the grocery store and “stocked up for the blizzard” since they probably will not be leaving the house for a while. She was supposed to fly here tomorrow but American Airlines called her several days ago and asked if she could re-schedule. At least they are being pro-active and I was worried about her flying tomorrow anyway :).

    4+
    1. My neighbor Carl (our neighbor dog Jackson’s dad) said he thought we were going to miss the worst of it, so fingers crossed. Krissie just wrote and said they were supposed to get 12″ to 18″ and Richie thought it would be less than 12″ and she thought it would be more than. We’ve had 18″ here before and at that point, you just say, “Fuck it, I’ll eat peanut butter til spring” and hunker down.

      8+
    1. That was before the changes. You kept saying, “It’s about the house.” I wrote a bunch more and added Alice and Isolde and ghosts and now I don’t know where the hell it is, but that was in 2016, so years later. That book has been around since 2004. I never throw anything out.

      4+
  32. WooHoo! Congratulations on finishing!

    This has been a fascinating time for me, watching this come together, I’m really looking forward to getting it in my hands (literally, this will be a hard cover purchase :-))

    0

Comments are closed.