So I’m rewriting the opening, trying to smooth out the cuts I made, and I realize that Nick is going to have to smite something because it’s referred to over and over again (and because it sets up the Rich scene later). But I don’t want to add much to the scene and I really like the one-two punch of the hellfire on the palm and then dropping the facade. So he smites something small in between those, only a second’s action, for a three-beat. It took me several minutes to figure out what and then to do the research, but I am a professional and I will spend minutes on things if it’s necessary. Like this:
I read a lot of my books this week, starting with the first one published. Somebody had said once that she read her own books when she got stuck on a story (I’m not stuck), and I thought, “Well, why not?” It was a lot like looking through an old photo album, the writing equivalent of “Look how thin I was in 1993!” but the big takeaway was that the good ones were pretty good although not as good as I remembered, and the bad ones weren’t that bad at all. Also, I skim my sex scenes when I read, so obviously those weren’t working, at least for me now. Like any other memory journey, though, it ended up being an analysis of loss and gain. Continue reading
Today is International Red Panda Day.
Red Pandas are endangered, which is bad, especially since they’re the only ones of their family: they’re not related to pandas, foxes, racoons, or bears, there’s just them, and thanks to depredations to their habitats, there are now less than 10,000 of them in the wild. Nothing this cute should ever go extinct.
Or just google “red panda” and squee. It’s that kind of day.
Thank you, Cassini, the little explorer that could.
Launched almost twenty years ago (Oct. 17, 1997), Cassini has been taking pictures of Saturn and its moons (and selfies, evidently) for thirteen years (it takes awhile to get to Saturn). Its primary mission was completed in June of 2008, but it said, “You know, as long I’m out here,” and kept on sending back information and pictures that revolutionized our understanding of space, thanks to the good work of NASA and the European Space Agency. NASA has a free e-book of the Saturn System Through the Eyes of Cassini, but my favorite Cassini production is still the Google Doodle.
I’ve been reading like crazy ever since we started this series of posts. My last binge was Lawrence Block’s Keller series which was interesting and sometimes a little outside of my moral zone (yes, I have one, it’s not extensive but the guy is a hitman). Now I’m reading some of my categories. It’s like looking through an old photo album. The earliest, Manhunting (hate that title), will be 25 next February, so a really old photo album.
What have you been reading?
Today is National Teddy Bear Day.
If you live in America, it’s time to get one so you have something to hold onto. At $14, he’s cheaper than therapy and easier on the psyche than screaming at the news.
Children are back in school and reading. You should, too.
So here’s the problem.
On the one hand, I’m getting all the info I need to write the rest of the book in the first chapter.
On the other hand, I like books with fast starts.
So I did some vicious cuts. Continue reading
September is Milkshake Month.
Throw a little Amaretto in there, too.
Terry Pratchett wanted his unpublished manuscript partials destroyed, so his daughter did it with a bulldozer.
Good for her.
There’s a reason writers don’t want their unpublished stuff published after death, and it’s the same reason they didn’t want it published during life: it’s bad. Even if it’s an early draft that could have turned into something good, it’s still bad. And no writer wants her or his last publication to be bad, or even mediocre, especially if he or she already knows it’s bad or mediocre. Destroying unpublished manuscripts is a good thing; just ask Harper Lee. Continue reading