Friday, December 16, 2011

The Easy and The Hard

Since my last post things have been up and down and all over the map. After the tragedy of losing Trey I spent many weeks not being myself at all. It wasn't until I thought maybe another dog in the house would help that I searched animal shelters and classifieds until I found this little guy.

Winston is a Wire-hair Fox Terrier and he has restored balance to my life.

So that was an up. Then just before Thanksgiving and while my husband was on a plane home from Germany, I got really sick...again. I'll compare it to earlier this year when I'd had to get my gallbladder removed except that I no longer had a gallbladder. So after pretending for a good 12 hours that I only had a bad flu bug, my husband finally gets home and I give him a hug and weepingly ask him to take to to the emergency room. After the nice nurses had given me a bed and some morphine, I sent my jetlagged husband home and waited for the results which I hoped had nothing to do with my missing gallbladder. The findings: my appendix needed to come out now!!

I know, I know. Two unrelated surgeries in one year. Both within a week of a major holiday. I'm a little concerned about what my body is planning for Christmas.

So that was the down. A few days later we hopped in the car as a family and drove to California to have Thanksgiving dinner with my Grandmother. It was a wonderful time to see family I hadn't seen for a long time, even if it was in a partially drug-induced haze. What a great upper.

While all this was happening, I was doing my best to continue with my writing. It's almost 2012, the year that R.A.G.E. will be released and I still feel like it's not even close to being ready. My editor suggested that my book wasn't beginning in the right place and that I should write a chapter about what happens before my current beginning. I thought this was funny at first because I'd deleted the first chapter over a year ago in order to start the novel in the middle of the action. What I learned was that people need a reason to care that the main character is being chased or shot at before you can do any of those things to them.

The trouble was, that chapter I'd deleted hadn't benefited from the massive amounts of writing knowledge I'd collected after it had been sent to be quietly buried in the file graveyard lovingly entitled "trashed writing". It was really no good. I had to start from scratch.

This was actually fun on many levels. I really got to examine my main characters as people would who were meeting them for the first time. I even surprised myself by writing in tiny snippets of backstory that had hitherto not existed, helping to round out characters I already thought were rounded.

And so the massive edits continue although I'm sneaking time when I can to work on the third and final book in my 12th Dimension series. My intention is to have all three books written before the first one comes out.

I'll leave you with this quote I borrowed from a friend. I want everyone to think of it every time you write a sentence, read a book, or even look at a book across the way in some big box store.

Easy reading is damn hard writing. --Nathaniel Hawthorne

And so it is.