Thursday, April 25, 2013

One-hundred-thirty-nine ...

I've decided to put the number of days left until the deadline as titles of my posts. Figure that will keep my eye on the ball and the pressure on. Unless V.S. comes through for me and starts harassing me.
So I had my monthly meeting with my mentor last night. As usual I left feeling on fire. I had submitted my latest chapter, which was a pretty rough draft, but even so I was told there wasn't many things to pick on. Some awkward sentences (I'm using a lot of parentheses and sub-clauses - like I do in most of my writing - which sometimes can get things in a twist by the time you get to the other end of the parentheses) but nothings that isn’t easily fixed. My mentor usually picks exactly the things I feel I've not quite got right and that is a good sign. According to my mentor.
In my mentor’s mind my deadline is ambitious but with the month off to write it should be doable. Suggested I find someone to swap novels with to edit entire draft come September (anyone reading this and might be interested let me know!). Praise for the line-by-line writing, pathos, humor, characterization, hooks, pace, the seamless transitions from internal reflection to external action - the usual stuff - made me skip home, ready to work my laptop to the bone. I’m good at this. And I don't even realize what I'm doing while I'm doing it.

Writing (and being a war correspondent) is the only thing I've ever wanted to do. Tell stories, make stuff up, invent lives, it's the only thing I'm any good at. I started making up stories before I could write. I remember my grandparents being amazed when I was 10 that I could write with such detail and insight. They were probably also a little sad I had such insight, and already tried so hard to recreate the story.

I’m working on two chapters at the moment – one J and one M. I asked my mentor to pick one for our next meeting and unfortunately it’s an M one. M is one of my main protagonists, the person the novel was supposed to concentrate on when I first started thinking about it, the most psychotic of them all, but she’s the only one I can’t quite pin down. Maybe because she’s too much like me (yes, I realize the implication of just having used the word psychotic in the previous sentence and then saying she’s like me) so every time I think I’ve got her right, she does something that I wouldn’t do so it feels weird. Therefore I’ve decided to completely change her – she’s now so not like me. Apart from the psychotic bit.

Fun though! I have to research some vaudeville stuff for this chapter and got these books
out form the library last week (one can only trust wiki so far!). The cover with the naked lady is actually a book about the cabaret so not really relevant to my story but who can resist borrowing something like that?! 

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