I can highly recommend If I’d Never Met You, by Mhairi McFarlane. It’s a let’s-pretend-we’re-a-couple romance but it’s also a whole lot more, the story of a woman rethinking her whole life, with great friendships and so much life and texture and depth that you’ll have to reread it. Just terrific.
I swear I scheduled a WW post, I even took a picture for it, but where the hell it went, I do not know. Since so many of us are working from home now, asking “What are you working on?” takes on whole new levels of complexity.
Here’s a blast from an Argh author’s past: King Me was Deb’s second book, self-published “on a whim;” her third book was the one that got her an agent. Four books later, she sold to a New York publisher and never looked back. Until now.
Morgan’s a modern witch who bows to no man. Arthur’s a mystic king who doesn’t trust women or magic. But they’ll have to work together to find a missing wizard before an evil sorceress captures him and ends the world . . .
I wrote an essay fifteen years ago called “Rats with Islands,” and I thought of it again this weekend because I am basically optimistic about the mess we’re in now. Not stupidly optimistic: I am socked in at home with social distancing of a good twenty feet (my house is set back from the one-lane road I live on) and enough food for a good two weeks, and I plan on doing everything I’m told like a good girl. I’m not stupid. But I am hopeful because hope is better than despair and gets me through the bad times a hell of a lot better than giving up ever has. Not that I’ve ever given up. It doesn’t seem productive, so I avoid it.
Anyway, here’s the essay I wrote in 2005 about the insanity of publishing and why you should never give up even if you never get published. Or the virus.
Welcome to the Argh Novel Project, a multi-week exploration of fiction and the process by which . . . okay, it’s just us playing around but that’s good, too. We’re starting with the Surprise Lily first scene because that’s what most of the comments said, although I did some very light editing (took out some unnecessary words and omitted all the “smells bad” stuff because you people kept insisting on historical accuracy). There’s a page under Work In Progress in the blog menu above that I’ll try to keep updated so that all the stuff from this is one place, but that’s about as much organization as I’m capable of. New stuff goes up on Monday, we talk in the comments all week, on Friday I try to synthesize and you can comment on that, I write on Saturday and Sunday, and on Monday we start all over again. Lather, rinse, repeat. If this gets boring or it doesn’t work, we’ll do something else. No rules (some guidelines, no Should, no worries. Argh People, start your engines:
So the plan is to brainstorm Surprise Lily (overwhelming preference) and then I’ll write whatever comes out of our brainstorming that week, and then we do it all over again until we get tired and wander off. Brainstorming should be as free form as possible, but we are gonna need some guidelines here.
First a schedule. I’m thinking I put up the new stuff on Mondays, we talk about it all week (we’ll have Working Wednesday and Good Book Thursday in there, too), we do some synthesizing on Friday, inspired by that I write over the weekend, and then we start all over. So Monday is the product of the previous week, and Friday is pulling all the talk from the week together so I have some RMoaGs* to work with.
This has been Introverts Week. You know, those people who are thinking, “How long can we make this social distancing thing last?” It’s also Quilting Day, so get out those crafts, and World Poetry Day, so get out those books, and Healthy Fats Day (I got nothin’, maybe snort some fish oil?). Me, I’m celebrating today as the International Day of Forests because I live in the woods and the trees are coming back from winter, which means that everything has its season, and this too shall pass. Keep safe, Argh People.
Also this was posted in one of my Rav groups, and I laugh every time I see it: Continue reading →
I’m trying to figure out something I can do to put some extra fun in our interactions since we’re all under siege. I mean, that wombat instagram was great, but there’s a limit to what a wombat can do. So I had this vague idea–very vague–about five minutes ago and without thinking it through, I’m going to put it up here so we can brainstorm it because it has to be a community thing or it won’t work. Actually since I haven’t thought it through, it’s probably doomed, I get a dozen brilliant ideas a day that turn to be trash by the time the sun goes down, but I figure if this is an Argh community project, maybe we can do something interesting with it. So . . .
Maybe the whole stay-home-and-look-at-the-people-you-love movement will turn out to be a blessing. I’m looking at things a lot differently, including yelling (happily) at my neighbors from a distance–such nice people and we’re all looking out for each other–and starting to relax into spring. Silver linings, Argh People.