pjthompson: astronomer (observing)

19 Apr
All I can legitimately talk about is my own process—in whatever. It’s presumptuous to assume everyone’s process will be the same. However, talking too much about one’s own process is talking too much about one’s self, so it’s something of a No-Win.

19 Apr
Conspiracy theory is just another form of denial.

19 Apr
I just realized I forgot to take the poem out of my pocket from Poem In My Pocket Day. But at least it’s in “my other pants.” :-)

23 Apr
In May it’ll be two years since I last worked on my last novel. I’d say where did the time go but I know: down the whirlpool of caregiving. I was born to take care of people, apparently. My life has no other meaning. There’s just no time for anything else. I can’t help feeling much of the time as if my life, everything I valued about my life, is over. I’m so tired most weeks I wonder if I’ll make it through to the other side. There are good days, but most days I just grind it out as best I can. Some days, it just piles up. But I’m still moving.

And being free of caregiving means someone I love is gone. There’s no happy ending, as my friend Lisa says.

There are millions of people out there just like me. Caregiving is the unrecognized and unacknowledged crisis in this country

My friends tell me my creativity will come back, that everything is cyclical, and I believe them, but it’s sometimes hard to see that from here. I keep trying. “I’ll just read a chapter a day, or part of a chapter.” But something always happens. And writing from scratch? Unthinkable at this point.

Okay, enough of the self-pity party. I took the time to reread the first chapter of that last novel and tweak it. Holds up well.

23 Apr
In the deserts of the heart
Let the healing fountain start,
In the prison of his days
Teach the free man how to praise.

tp://bit.ly/ZnFRWA 

25 Apr
Jacob’s Dream was playing in the cafeteria so I just had to tell everyone about the Lost Children of the Alleghenies: http://bit.ly/ZPZC4t 
Everyone was properly riveted and scads went to You Tube and the links I provided.

26 Apr
Back at the ER this morning. Mom got an IV of antibiotics. Now we’re waiting to see if we can go home.

27 Apr
Even in stressful times there are compensations in this world: hearing David Sedaris sing the Oscar Meyer bologna song as Billie Holliday. Laughed so hard I cried. The guy in the car next to me looked concerned, like I might be having a fit. I was. The good kind. 

27 Apr
So my printer and my dishwasher went belly up the same night.  I’m sure there’s a pattern there but I’m too tired to figure it out.

29 Apr
Leaving Mom on mornings when she’s not doing well are heartbreaking but if I didn’t leave on those mornings I would have long since lost my job.

29 Apr
I find it absolutely hilarious that Hitler was a vegetarian. Even funnier? The ardent vegetarians that try to backpedal that fact. I know many fine human beings who are vegetarians but there’s a vocal minority that do seem to have something in common with Nazis.

30 Apr
“Dammit I’m mad” spelled backwards is “Dammit I’m mad.”

3 May
I guess the house is officially mine. I’ve just had my first plumbing disaster. This time it was the 50 gallon water heater that went belly up.

3 May
John Hancock Life Insurance is dicking around about paying me the money they owe me. I guess that’s why they have cock in their name.

4 May
It’s a morning for people saying stupid ass stuff and I am not in the mood to be nice about it.

 That tenderness of a few days ago is still there but having a harder time swimming up from the cesspool.

 That’s in the nature of this process, though. If you don’t like the mood you’re in wait an hour and it may change.

8 May
Now I know what was wrong with the opening of that novel: I put a gun on the mantelpiece and never used it again (figuratively).

 How many years did it take me to figure that out?

 I really love that opening (and it works in so many other ways) so I’ll have to find a way of using that “gun.”
 Although I do seem to recall another writing truism about using that gun to murder your something-or-others…What was that again?

8 May
My old, beloved neighborhood that I grew up in, has become the Shrine of the Unknown Hipster. You may have heard of it: Silicon Beach? I literally grew up on 4th Avenue near Rose, the very heart of Hipsterville now. I way preferred it when it was the ghetto: funky, beloved ol’ Venice.

9 May
You don’t get to be a crone just by getting older. There’s a experiential component to it. And man, is that a bitch. Which is also a separate thing from being a crone.

13 May
I’ve just come up with the last line for my novel, Carmina. I guess it’s a real story now.

13 May
Well, at least I made it down to the final 800 submissions. :-/ Probably just as well. I don’t have time for a writing career right now.

14 May
John Hancock Life Insurance, the company that isn’t giving me ma money, mistakenly informed the state of California that Mom is deceased—but only on one of numerous policies they have in her name. The others are still in force. Also, they told us a few months back that no other policies existed. Now all of a sudden they’re breeding like rabbits. Do not use John Hancock EVER.

15 May
Social Medea is the name of my next band.

15 May
I’m halfway through chapter six on the read-and-clean final of that novel I didn’t touch for two years.

Mirrored from Better Than Dead.

pjthompson: astronomer (observing)

19 Apr
All I can legitimately talk about is my own process—in whatever. It’s presumptuous to assume everyone’s process will be the same. However, talking too much about one’s own process is talking too much about one’s self, so it’s something of a No-Win.

19 Apr
Conspiracy theory is just another form of denial.

19 Apr
I just realized I forgot to take the poem out of my pocket from Poem In My Pocket Day. But at least it’s in “my other pants.” :-)

23 Apr
In May it’ll be two years since I last worked on my last novel. I’d say where did the time go but I know: down the whirlpool of caregiving. I was born to take care of people, apparently. My life has no other meaning. There’s just no time for anything else. I can’t help feeling much of the time as if my life, everything I valued about my life, is over. I’m so tired most weeks I wonder if I’ll make it through to the other side. There are good days, but most days I just grind it out as best I can. Some days, it just piles up. But I’m still moving.

And being free of caregiving means someone I love is gone. There’s no happy ending, as my friend Lisa says.

There are millions of people out there just like me. Caregiving is the unrecognized and unacknowledged crisis in this country

My friends tell me my creativity will come back, that everything is cyclical, and I believe them, but it’s sometimes hard to see that from here. I keep trying. “I’ll just read a chapter a day, or part of a chapter.” But something always happens. And writing from scratch? Unthinkable at this point.

Okay, enough of the self-pity party. I took the time to reread the first chapter of that last novel and tweak it. Holds up well.

23 Apr
In the deserts of the heart
Let the healing fountain start,
In the prison of his days
Teach the free man how to praise.

tp://bit.ly/ZnFRWA 

25 Apr
Jacob’s Dream was playing in the cafeteria so I just had to tell everyone about the Lost Children of the Alleghenies: http://bit.ly/ZPZC4t 
Everyone was properly riveted and scads went to You Tube and the links I provided.

26 Apr
Back at the ER this morning. Mom got an IV of antibiotics. Now we’re waiting to see if we can go home.

27 Apr
Even in stressful times there are compensations in this world: hearing David Sedaris sing the Oscar Meyer bologna song as Billie Holliday. Laughed so hard I cried. The guy in the car next to me looked concerned, like I might be having a fit. I was. The good kind. 

27 Apr
So my printer and my dishwasher went belly up the same night.  I’m sure there’s a pattern there but I’m too tired to figure it out.

29 Apr
Leaving Mom on mornings when she’s not doing well are heartbreaking but if I didn’t leave on those mornings I would have long since lost my job.

29 Apr
I find it absolutely hilarious that Hitler was a vegetarian. Even funnier? The ardent vegetarians that try to backpedal that fact. I know many fine human beings who are vegetarians but there’s a vocal minority that do seem to have something in common with Nazis.

30 Apr
“Dammit I’m mad” spelled backwards is “Dammit I’m mad.”

3 May
I guess the house is officially mine. I’ve just had my first plumbing disaster. This time it was the 50 gallon water heater that went belly up.

3 May
John Hancock Life Insurance is dicking around about paying me the money they owe me. I guess that’s why they have cock in their name.

4 May
It’s a morning for people saying stupid ass stuff and I am not in the mood to be nice about it.

 That tenderness of a few days ago is still there but having a harder time swimming up from the cesspool.

 That’s in the nature of this process, though. If you don’t like the mood you’re in wait an hour and it may change.

8 May
Now I know what was wrong with the opening of that novel: I put a gun on the mantelpiece and never used it again (figuratively).

 How many years did it take me to figure that out?

 I really love that opening (and it works in so many other ways) so I’ll have to find a way of using that “gun.”
 Although I do seem to recall another writing truism about using that gun to murder your something-or-others…What was that again?

8 May
My old, beloved neighborhood that I grew up in, has become the Shrine of the Unknown Hipster. You may have heard of it: Silicon Beach? I literally grew up on 4th Avenue near Rose, the very heart of Hipsterville now. I way preferred it when it was the ghetto: funky, beloved ol’ Venice.

9 May
You don’t get to be a crone just by getting older. There’s a experiential component to it. And man, is that a bitch. Which is also a separate thing from being a crone.

13 May
I’ve just come up with the last line for my novel, Carmina. I guess it’s a real story now.

13 May
Well, at least I made it down to the final 800 submissions. :-/ Probably just as well. I don’t have time for a writing career right now.

14 May
John Hancock Life Insurance, the company that isn’t giving me ma money, mistakenly informed the state of California that Mom is deceased—but only on one of numerous policies they have in her name. The others are still in force. Also, they told us a few months back that no other policies existed. Now all of a sudden they’re breeding like rabbits. Do not use John Hancock EVER.

15 May
Social Medea is the name of my next band.

15 May
I’m halfway through chapter six on the read-and-clean final of that novel I didn’t touch for two years.

Mirrored from Better Than Dead.

pjthompson: parker writing (dorothy)

1. A sixth century vampire novel, part of a trilogy. King Arthur may be hanging around in it somewhere.  It’s a first draft, and it has a resolution of sorts at the end, but is one of those novels that most definitely feels like a continuation. (I hate those.)

2. A second world steampunkish adventure fantasy. This one can stand alone,  but is also part of a trilogy. It’s in a fairly polished state, but there’s a broken part in Act III. I think I fixed it, but I haven’t had the heart to reread the book to see if I fixed it as well as I thought I did.

3. A contemporary fantasy that’s in second draft stage, and can stand alone, but is…repeat after me, “part of a trilogy.” Chronologically, the middle novel in the trilogy, I still plan to begin the trilogy with this one as it gives the least away about the overall story arc. Probably closer to Charles de Lint’s Newford than urban fantasy or paranormal romance—if Chas wrote it for laughs, included Hot Sex, and Newford was a mythological rural county in Southern California.

There is no right or wrong answer here, just asking your opinion.

ETA: I have had one offline vote for #1.

Mirrored from Better Than Dead.

pjthompson: parker writing (dorothy)

1. A sixth century vampire novel, part of a trilogy. King Arthur may be hanging around in it somewhere.  It’s a first draft, and it has a resolution of sorts at the end, but is one of those novels that most definitely feels like a continuation. (I hate those.)

2. A second world steampunkish adventure fantasy. This one can stand alone,  but is also part of a trilogy. It’s in a fairly polished state, but there’s a broken part in Act III. I think I fixed it, but I haven’t had the heart to reread the book to see if I fixed it as well as I thought I did.

3. A contemporary fantasy that’s in second draft stage, and can stand alone, but is…repeat after me, “part of a trilogy.” Chronologically, the middle novel in the trilogy, I still plan to begin the trilogy with this one as it gives the least away about the overall story arc. Probably closer to Charles de Lint’s Newford than urban fantasy or paranormal romance—if Chas wrote it for laughs, included Hot Sex, and Newford was a mythological rural county in Southern California.

There is no right or wrong answer here, just asking your opinion.

ETA: I have had one offline vote for #1.

Mirrored from Better Than Dead.

pjthompson: (Default)

The heroine of my novel Venus in Transit has been named Marian St. Cloud for at least ten years, ever since I first started working on the beginning inkling ideas for the book. Now this movie comes along and I’m thinking the whole St. Cloud family of Dos Lunas might have to have their names changed. I’m not going to do that now, because that name is so entrenched in my consciousness, but I assume that everyone will assume that I stole it from the movie.

It looks like a fairly paint-by-the-numbers, dorky movie, too.

Of course, I still have to finish the read-through, the time with betas, the hardcore rewrite, then the marketing of this novel, so considerable time could elapse before even the possibility of a publisher or readers seeing it. Maybe ol’ Charlie will have faded from memory by then. Or maybe it will become a huge freaking hit, what with soulfully blue-eyed Zak Efron drawing in the sighing crowd. I don’t know.

Names and titles. They’re tricky business in the fiction game.

In other but related fictive news: Titles come to me out of the ether on a regular basis, often without a story attached. I keep a file just for those. Sometimes they’re so suggestive that I have to come up with a story to go with them. It becomes an obsession. Blood Geek was one of those. Ironically, sometimes the name that gets me to write the story becomes obsolete with the writing and has to be changed. Charged with Folly was like that. It became A Rain of Angels. Changing titles like that can be painful.

I’ve got another title that popped through the ether the other day. A drumbeat has started in the center of my body. Good stories begin in my brain, of course, but the ones which have to be written always eventually migrate to my core, to my second brain: the heart. I have no idea what this story is about, but it’s already migrated.

We’ll see what comes of that.

Mirrored from Better Than Dead.

pjthompson: (Default)
1. I'm currently finishing up the rewrite of a section of A Rain of Angels that I'd forgotten to finish. I thought it was done, but I'd stopped in the middle of a scene. One of my lamer-brained moves. Sure glad I reread that part before sending it out. The new material makes it stronger, I think, but my overall feelings about the novel are not helped by the fact that I've been working on my least favorite part of it. I've lost perspective on whether or not it works, or is enough, or if there are more changes I need to make, or if that's just rampant perfectionism getting in the way of sending it out. I have no idea at this point.

2. So, I posted this Steven Wright quote on Twitter: "What's another word for Thesaurus?" Some dear heart who I did not know actually tweeted back with a list of synonyms for thesaurus.

3. Sometimes I wonder if I have the intellect of a magpie. Someone posts something/does something and my magpie brain says, "Ooo! That looks like fun! I want to do it, too!" And off I go in a cloud of bright, shiny objects. I am highly distractible these days. All sorts of siren time sinks are calling my name, trying to woo me away from whatever I should be focusing on. I ping pong, therefore I am. Bright shiny objects!

4. This week's irony: When I originally sent out the Dorothy Parker quotation on rewrites, I misspelled her name and had to correct it and send it out again.

5. I seem to be spending a lot of money which I do not actually possess these days. Bright, shiny. I guess I'm just being patriotic. I must stop, though. The spending, not the patriotism, of course.
pjthompson: (Default)
1. I don't know why I'm still amazed at the utter hypocrisy of people pointing fingers at others for the stuff they routinely do themselves. Yet still I find myself surprised. No, nothing directed at me, just a general observation, and if you're reading this it's dead certain you're not who I'm talking about. And since going after straw dogs and easy targets means many folks will nod and go along with the finger-pointing, no one is likely to call the hypocrite out.

2. Another bout of stomach difficulties this week: I hear this flu makes you sick, then lets you think you're recovered, then hits you again, so I don't suppose anything sinister is going on. I'm feeling better today. Well, except for the usual creeping, clinging malaise.

3. I've rewritten one of the offending chapters of A Rain of Angels and am overall satisfied with the change. I'm having a hard time motivating myself to go on to change the next chapter, the one requiring me to completely get rid of one comic character that I rather like and replace him with a grim and scary sort, then shift the other comically stupid character to one that is sinisterly stupid. I am so done with this novel. But I will slay the monster yet!

4. A big restructure is also necessary in order to proceed with Venus in Transit. The next chapter to be posted on OWW, chapter 9, requires me to start the restructure, but I can't seem to work up the enthusiasm for it. Maybe I should finish the novel, then restructure. I don't usually favor circling back to make changes before pushing through to the end because it usually lands me in just the kind of malaise I find myself in now. Maybe I could stomach it better as a completed first draft that needs fixing, as that is the usual pattern of ripping things up to reassemble. Maybe.

5. I thought yesterday I'd say to hell with both these projects and write something just for fun. But I didn't. Couldn't think of what I wanted to write, it seemed like too much trouble. My vaunted drive to write seems to have vaulted over the wall. I wonder what my reasons for writing are these days? The old formulae no longer seem to apply. Perhaps what's needed is a restructuring of myself rather than my novels.
pjthompson: (Default)
One begins to suspect that one cannot just rewrite two and a half chapters, as one hoped, because in changing one's worldbuilding it sends ripples out through the rest of one's manuscript. One remains hopeful that after the major change in the two and a half chapters in question, one might be able to get away with minor changes in the final third of the book. But, regardless, one had better get one's arse in gear since the ms. has already been sent out on queries.

Sure glad I don't have that problem.
pjthompson: (Default)
I do believe Venus in Transit is the most diffuse and rambling novel I've ever written. There is a real conflict in the story, but through most of the book it's taking place at an elevated level that I've left hidden from the reader. Bad idea—at least from a genre POV. It's one thing to charm the reader with antic or exciting goings-on, but if the conflict remains invisible, they will probably give up in frustration, muttering, "Where's the beef?"

Clearly, the story needs a big restructuring and I need to stop with the coy stuff and let the reader know what is at stake and how those stakes effect my main characters. As structured now, that doesn't become evident until quite a bit later in the novel. I'm not sure the readers will stick around for the reveal.

I've been trying to hold my feet to the fire the last couple of days, forcing myself to write out a detailed outline of what's happened so far, what's going to happen. It's already quite evident that one whole chunk of the novel should be removed in order to get to the revelation of conflict sooner. The seven chapters I've already posted to the workshop could also probably be reduced by half. And I need to reveal the protagonists more directly, maybe give the reader information that my characters don't yet possess. That, at least, would give them a sense of the sly, serpentine bad mojo lurking beneath the bright façade. It would at least give them some sense that there is conflict, that it does impact my characters, but the characters don't have any idea yet.

Yeah, that's what I should have done. These things are always so clear in retrospect. I can't decide whether I should pull VIT from the shop, do the restructure, then repost or if I should just proceed from this point on, fixing as I go, with the idea of fixing the front end in the next draft.

Decisions, decisions.

The novel that's working most powerfully on my psyche right now is actually the sequel to A Rain of Angels (maybe because I'm just about to start marketing AROA). I've done a lot of prep work on the sequel, and the main characters not only have a good, serious conflict but they now have names: Evanne and Scorch. For those of you who read AROA, Carsten and Rye are still around, but they'll be sharing the focus with these other characters. I haven't yet decided on POV, whether it will be with one character or multiples, but once I have that locked down I might actually be able to start writing this little baby.

But I dohave a tentative title. I've been jokingly calling it Intermittent Showers of Angels, but I think the new official working title will actually be The Great Awakening. I'm not sure if that title will make it across the finish line, but at least it's something to call the thing.
pjthompson: (Default)
It's been awhile since I've lived in the dream of a story. I'm not sure why. Or maybe I can think of a lot of reasons, each too boring to go into. But I miss it. The phantom limb of my imagination throbs, but I can't scratch it.

And yet, things seem to be moving again. Slowly, the phantom limb solidifies. Last week an old high fantasy novel that I abandoned long ago started whispering to me again. "I've got a new title for you, dearie. Much better than the tawdry old one."

Ice In My Bones

I'd done quite a lot of work on that one without actually writing it. So much outlining, in fact, that it killed the dream of the story, which effectively killed the possibility of me writing it. The main character of that one has never quite left me alone, though, popping his head up now and again like a toadstool on the lawn. I think he'd like his shot at a fairy ring or some such. Maybe now that I've forgotten many of the nuts and bolts of the story I can go back to dreaming it and write the damned thing down. Maybe not.

Pressing a lot harder last week was the sequel to A Rain of Angels. I've done quite bit of work on that one, too. I still don't have a solid enough ending, but most of the main characters have names now. Still one crucial person left unnamed. I'm sure she'll whisper her name to me one of these days soon, though. Carsten and Rye and the others will return, but there are a new batch of New Batchers, too.

And still no title for that one: An Intermittent Flurry of Angels perhaps? A Blitzkrieg of Angels? Even More Barfing Angels?

It remains a mystery. But one that will probably be solved.

And I'm doing the "reader's read through" of A Rain of Angels right now. I'm not allowing myself to make major changes, just reading several chapters a day as a reader would (minor fixes allowable). I'm glad I am. Many more typos than I would have expected and odd bits of formatting and left out things. I'm up to chapter 16 and it reads pretty good. Not perfect, but yanno, I'm done with it.

And Venus in Transit? Still working it's way slowly through the workshop to much general ambivalence. I've inched closer to a solution to the problems on that one, too, as well as some major revisions to what's already done—which I'll probably do before posting it to (hopefully) get reactions on the new material. But some crucial things still elude me.

I imagine my imagination will come up with something there, too. Where there's life there's hope, after all.

Et finis

Apr. 7th, 2009 04:30 pm
pjthompson: (Default)
The rewrite of A Rain of Angels, she is finished. Many things about this novel pain me, but I am done. Done, done, done.

I've gone back and tried to plump up the backstory of the villain because once again I've managed to write a paper thin antagonist. My baddies either have way the hell too much backstory or none at all. One day I will learn to walk that tightrope. In the meantime, I will wear a parachute.

Now, I will lay this aside for a week or so, then reread selected chapters, then...out she goes, for better or worse!

SMF:



Arial:



TNR:

pjthompson: (Default)
I absolutely can't stand the thought of reading Angels one more time. What do you think that means? I think it means I'm done when this rewrite is done and it's time to start sending it out. I'll reread selected chapters to make sure things are okay, but no more.

Unless or until an agent/editor asks me to, of course.

Or until some time has elapsed and I've forgotten how much I loathe it at this moment in time.

Figuratively speaking, of course.


A Rain of Angels

pjthompson: (Default)
I found myself writing a review this week in which I criticized an author for sending his MC on a journey to a far off land for no more apparent reason than to show off more of his cool worldbuilding.

I just realized as I rewrote today that I could be accused of the same thing in Angels.

But, but, but my characters learned important information there! They were made to confront parts of themselves they lost! They hooked up with folks who will be important in the sequels!

::grumbles::
pjthompson: (Default)
There was a good post on the writer's dilemma in regards to publishing at Editorial Ass today. A sympathetic look at the various minefields a writer must consider.

And another good post on writing speed over at Writer Unboxed. There's all kinds of ways to write books, and no right way. What ultmately matters is not how fast or slow, but whether your technique helps you consistently finish books.

Me? I'm thinking a lot about structure these days. I have a twisty mind that comes up with complex stories and sometimes getting it on the page is tough. I think I've got the sentence-level stuff working pretty well; I think I'm doing a pretty good job with characters. My plotting skillz are okay, but could still use some work, I think. But structure--structure structure structure structure structure. That's killing me. I find myself wondering if I'm attempting things that I may not yet be good enough to pull off.

I'm mulling a lot. Thinking, pondering, weighing, sifting.

I suspect this trend will continue.

Meanwhile, the rewrite continues.

A Rain of Angels

pjthompson: (Default)
I've just passed through the most painful part of the rewrite, the part where I actually had to rewrite some scenes rather than just prettify the language. The monkey poo scene is no more! Or, actually, only the poo-flinging part. I knew it was a weak spot in the manuscript so I wasn't unhappy to see it go, but I wanted to rewrite it in such a way as to avoid a cascading domino effect on the rest of the story. I think I accomplished that, and may even have added depth to the story as a result.

I also recognized a need to go deeper on some of the worldbuilding. It hadn't occurred to me until this rewrite that I left out some important information, so I've added that in—a couple of infodumps that will have to be edited. About a page-worth of material overall added here and there in the ms. I've also been mapping out territories beyond the boundaries of the places covered in the story. I started that process early on, abandoning it when I got caught up in this story, but that wasn't such a smart thing. Making the maps forces me to look more closely at the world, and even if I don't use those things in the current novel, they inform the subtext. That depth thing.

While I'm at it, I'm going to see if I can do something about the plethora of middle manuscript scenes of people standing around talking about the plot. That's been bugging me, too. And this post by Nathan Bransford only heightened that feeling. Some of my "discussion" scenes have good emotional conflict. Others I'm going to have to study with a jaundiced eye.

I wanted to hurry this book out the door, but I have to face the fact that I am not going to be able to do that. I still have a good opening 11 chapters, and a good ending, but if I don't do the hard work required to make that middle live up to the other parts of the book, I'm not going to be happy. I've been tormenting myself—because that's my favorite sport, apparently—that I am doing this just to avoid sending it out. But I've had time to digest that, too. To mull and sift and go deep into my own heart and psyche. This isn't about not wanting to send the book out. This is about making it the best book I can. I have been trying to ignore that part of the equation, but I can't. My deeper angels (demons?) won't let me get away with that indefinitely.

And that's as it should be.

I'm not unhappy about this. Figuring it all out has been liberating. This has been the book that didn't quite sit right in my gut. Now I know why, and now I know I can make it better.

A Rain of Angels




But where are the Zokutous of yesteryear?
pjthompson: (Default)
Deficiency. So I learned my lesson about calling in for lab results after spending most of a year with hypothyroidism. Most doctors would call the patient if they found a deficiency, but this is UCLA—they don't call anyone. Good care, mind you, but you definitely have to take responsibility for your own damned self. I saw my doc in January and told him that I'd gradually started to feel better since getting the boost in thyroid hormone in early August. Mostly, I didn't know how bad I'd been feeling until I started to feel better. "That's always the way it is with thyroid," he said. A slow, subtle diminishment until you don't remember what it feels like to feel good.

Anyway, like a good little patient, I called the following week for my lab results. "Your thyroid level is good," he said, "but you've got a severe vitamin D deficiency." He put me on megadoses of vitamins to help correct this. Important vitamin, is D. I must give up my vampire habits and get more sunshine. In fact, I heard an expert talking on NPR not so long ago saying that we've done such a good job of emphasizing sunscreen to people that vitamin D deficiencies are on the rise.

I don't know if it's the vitamins, the placebo effect, or whatevs, but after three weeks on the D, I feel much better.

Dental. As of Tuesday, I will have dropped nearly $1300 on dentistry since mid-December. I needed a crown on one tooth (I'd been dragging my feet on that one, which is a disgusting thing to do in one's mouth), but when I broke a tooth in December I had to face the Musak and go to the dentist. Fortunately, both crowns were on the same side, to localize the pain, and Tuesday will be the end of the process. It would have been last Tuesday only the receptionists forgot to call me and let me know the dentist had called in sick that day. I showed up with my loins all girded only to be told I'd have to gird them again some other time. I was not well pleased.

Dead. And here comes the really whiny part, the part having to do with writing and rewriting my novel. I hit chapter 12 yesterday, and worked on 13 today. I've been okay with most of the writing to this point, but in these last two chapters it's like my voice has died. I know it's there in the opening and again at the end, but here in the oppressive middle it seems strained and stiff. One of my betas even said that I wasn't writing like my normal self, and I've sensed that's true with each draft, but I don't seem to be able to fix it. I don't know how long this dead voice thing will go on before I snap out of it—I have to read further to see—but at least the voice picked up again halfway through chapter 13. After I've finished the whole book I may go back and try to "voicen" up these chapters, but my sense is that I've done about all I can do at this point in time. I may not be able to fix them, or I may have to put a lot of time and space between me and this novel before I can. And I'd really rather start marketing it and concentrate on something else.

So that's what I think I'll do.
pjthompson: (Default)
Proofread? Who needs to proofread? Besides, images generated by typo are so much more interesting.


The true word count for the rewrite of A Rain of Angels:


Zokutou word meterZokutou word meter
54,250 / 111,750
(48.5%)
pjthompson: (Default)
Yeah, I've reached the part of the manuscript that makes me cringe. Chapter 12 and one too many scenes with people sitting around talking. Brain no work so good. Can't think of nothing better. I've lost all perspective—so I'm just going to keep pushing forward.



A Rain of Angels rewrite:

Zokutou word meterZokutou word meter
54,250 / 11,750
(461.7%)



Not crazy about this new Zokutou image. It's looks kinda nasty.
pjthompson: (Default)
Thanks to the lovely and talented [livejournal.com profile] ilona_andrews I don't feel quite so much loathing for A Rain of Angels.

:-)
pjthompson: (Default)
I know that I am well and truly done with a ms. when I reach what I've come to call the Loathing Draft. That's where you don't think you can read through/rewrite the damned thing one more time without doing yourself injury and there's nothing left but to finish up the edit and start sending it out.

If an agent wants changes, or an editor is willing to pay me for the book, then I will happily and yippy-skippily make the changes. Otherwise, it's time for this book to make it's way in the world. Three-quarters of the book to go, and some of that I expect to be hard sailing. The chapters I've done so far have mostly needed a language/clarification polish, but the middle of the manuscript may be something of a Sargasso Sea. Such is the writing life! Yo ho, yo ho.



A Rain of Angels

Zokutou word meterZokutou word meter
24,000 / 112,000
(21.4%)

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