Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Me and myself

Monday was another fruitful meeting at the writer's guild. The group is expanding, and every event has a good energy to it. Because the venue changed recently, I got to see an old historic town not near at all to where I live, but I think in general I'm capable of staying on the bright side. We shared our writing with one another, and filled out little sheets with feedback and criticism. Most of what I got was useful, and everyone agreed that I read too fast. I come off as nervous, because I am, and it shows. So, step one to improve the public reading is to slow down.

Before Monday I had a pretty good weekend. A good friend is opening a store, and I got to learn all about the behind the scenes features of that experience (went ahead and tucked that away for use later). There is no small amount of activity that precedes a lonely little space in some random suite transforming into the kind of joint that looks like it couldn't be anything but filled with merchandise and customers. It's pretty amazing to me what sort of things can happen when one isn't paying attention (similar to the experience of taking a different route home and the entire trip being dotted with moments of "hey, where'd that come from?").

And of course I wrote. Chapter 1 went about as smoothly as the prologue, and since then I've had some good percolation on the little details in Chapter 2. Recently, another friend discovered how little details can breath life into a situation. The devil is in the details, but not just. So, I wouldn't say I have momentum yet, per se, but it's coming. I can feel it, and it's a nice sensation. Like always, I made a new folder for the new book and week by week, arduously, I will slowly fill it with file after file. In the beginning it looks pretty sad, but in the end it's something to feel positively about. I wonder if I'll ever get used to this process.

In other news, I just got my copy of the contract back after the publisher signed and mailed it. I don't know how much more real it makes things feel, but it certainly makes them more legally binding. I'm developing a bit of a split persona, part of me looking forward and part of me stuck in the present. I wonder which of them is happier, or more content, or which resents the other more.

And lastly, I got the third person to ask me, demand might even be a better word, for a look at an early draft of the next novel. It felt good, and even better to receive positive reviews (if anyone asks, these are beta readers I'm talking about) about something that will hopefully vastly improve over the next several months. A friend was taken aback somewhat when I actually outlined how much I had written, and how much I was still planning to. It strikes me as odd how often I have no idea what to say; maybe the words on the pages speak more quietly than I planned?

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