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Drip, drip, drip.

11 Jan

“Hello, this is maintenance. I’ll need to come by your place tomorrow, for repairs.”

“Er. Why? I don’t have anything broken, that I know of.”

“You have a leak in your master bathroom’s plumbing.”

“What? I do. Er. How do you know?”

“It’s leaking through the ceiling into the empty apartment below you.”

“Oh. Right.”

So cheerfully, a man with tools is coming by in a couple of hours. He declared, entirely nonchalant about it, that he’d need to “get inside the wall,” which I guess I knew (I watch Holmes on Homes obsessively, after all) but was hoping against. So while I’m sitting in my soundproofed little closet office, writing away, he’ll be a wall away from me, working on making it rather less than a wall away from me, if you see what I mean. I have no idea what he’s going to do, or how long it’ll take.

While I’m killing time and waiting for him to show up, I have a screaming baby (he’s got to move out eventually), and a headache and none of the mental clarity, or at least operational ability to write. So you get a miscellaneous blog post, instead.

Let’s see. I hope I’ve plugged it here before, but Fast Forward TV is the finest television show, of sorts, on science fiction going. I spend more time watching what are really terrific interviews with all manner of really fine authors. In particular, I recently showed off their Dr. Brian Jacques interview to Lori and Kristine, because he’s a delight to watch and listen to. Even if you don’t enjoy the Redwall books (you don’t? you must be mad), then you can’t help but be utterly charmed by him.

Tom Schaad conducts the interviews, and he does a marvelous job of being intelligent and insightful all by himself, whether he’s asking questions of Neil Gaiman or Gene Wolfe, or inserting brief questions into the slow drawl of Bill Gibson as he slowly, slowly, talks about the world and gets it all right.

Go there. Watch all the interviews. Feel pretty good about being a writer. I don’t mind telling you that if I wind up on that show, long-watching and the intellect of Tom Schaad will result in me being too intimidated to answer questions usefully. But what a great place to be unable to answer questions. So it’s either an aspiration, or a fear.

There. By the magic of the internet, it’s now twenty minutes later. I have a screaming baby on my lap, but no tea, so I’m not sure I’ve come out ahead of those twenty minutes at all.

I was utterly miserable staring at the Nondescript, which again seemed to be stretching on away from me. Then I fixed the problem, just that easily. I realized I was trying to expand little scenes that didn’t need it, and as a result, I was failing to move from point to point on my sheet of “scenes between now and the end of the novel,” and wasn’t getting anywhere. So I crunched up a scene (which was stumping me anyway, because I didn’t really have anything for it) and got on with my story. So now it’s rolling again. There’s still so much to do, but we’re about to find out who Charley is, and then we’ll meet Charley, and that really gets things properly accelerating toward my ending.

The other nice thing I’m noticing is that there are scenes missing and themes that are poorly constructed…but I’ve made notes of them in another sheet of paper, for my editing stage (not really a second draft, though I guess you can call it that. I really don’t second-draft much). It’s nice, I like having things mapped out for the edit stage. Add in those scenes, tighten up one theme and one character, and I think we’ll have a pretty decent book, if I do say so myself.

I’ve started writing The Neon God on paper, because I switched the Nondescript back to the computer (I think I mentioned that). Neon God is going okay. Not very fast, because I always stall out in the first chapter while I figure out 1) where the first chapter is going 2) where my entry point is 3) what I’m trying to say. So while I’m probably in no danger of cleaning up in the Penman Shipwreck, at least I’m getting some forward motion. That’s got to count for something. It’s just gotta…!

Word counts are the devil. I need to go into greater length on that topic, but it’s probably an article all by itself. Word counts are the absolute devil. Trust me.

Fried chicken for breakfast, although it doesn’t seem like it at first, is also the devil. And I don’t expect any sympathy here, probably just a chorus of “duh.”

That’s it. I’m out of stuff. Time for some tea, some breakfast, maybe an hour’s quiet before the kid gets woken up, and then maybe sometime this afternoon, I’ll try that writing lark for a bit.

How are you?

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16 Comments

Posted by on January 11, 2008 in Uncategorized

 

16 responses to “Drip, drip, drip.

  1. Shadow T. Ferret

    January 11, 2008 at 9:09 am

    Crying babies. It gets better, trust me. Just thank your lucky stars he doesn’t suffer from colic. I didn’t write at all for a long time after my son’s birth.

    Is that show on television or only available on the internet?

    —-

    Word counts. Kristine did that. :p

    —–

    Cold fried chicken? For breakfast? *drools*

    ——

    How am I? I’m waiting for a letter! That’s how I am! And my stomach is bothering me (not related). I think I might go home early today.

     
  2. Pete Tzinski

    January 11, 2008 at 9:11 am

    It’s a real TV show, on small channels in, I think, Canada. Otherwise, you can just watch it on the web-site I littered links to.

    It was REHEATED fried chicken. I am not a barbarian.

    I will write you a letter! Probably it will be what I do today, while a man is destroying my wall.

    I couldn’t remember if Kristine did it yet or not, and was too muzzy to go check. Certainly, we’ve been going around about it in e-mail. I need to stop telling her my thought processes and revelations about writing, that way I have something to post about before she does.

    (She is more articulate than I am anyway, she can do it. I have to return to my breakfast anyway. It’s reheated pizza, since you asked.)

     
  3. mymidnightmuse

    January 11, 2008 at 9:13 am

    I’m tired, thank you for asking. This week has been stressful, y’all know what’s going on in my corner. Add to that issues I’m having trying to install a bedroom light for the last 3 weeks (I’m still in the dark, thank you very much) and my sister’s birthday was yesterday. I stalled out completely in writing but only due to the extraneous crap going, not because of the story. But I got going again last night and Ether’s still making me happy.

    I hate home repair issues – even if you’re a renter and it’s technically not your issue – you still have to live the inconvenience. I’d like to see this plumber’s face, though, when he’s working in your bathroom and aware that there’s a man hiding in a closet in the next room.

     
  4. Shadow T. Ferret

    January 11, 2008 at 9:29 am

    Oh! I remembered living in an apartment. We went out, after having flushed the toilet and when we returned, everyone was going crazy. Our toilet had overflowed and was completely ruining the woman’s apartment downstairs.

    And call me a barbarian then because I just LOVE me some cold fried chicken and some cold pizza.

     
  5. tjwriter

    January 11, 2008 at 10:22 am

    Here in our little town, the water does horrible things to the pipes, so most of the pipes have access panels where we can get to them quickly and make repairs.

    I enjoyed a screaming toddler this morning, which involves crying and running around while screaming and crying. She so woke up on the wrong side of the bed this morning.

    I’ve not been writing, much to my dismay because of all the crazy things that keep happening. Working extreme hours, husband’ relative having a heart attack, toddler with tonsilitis, etc. It just keeps going and getting better. My Penmanship Wreck is sitting on the table with a measly half a page. Loads of ideas to work on it with, but seeing as I haven’t even taken down the tree yet, I’m a little behind.

    I’ve been stuck in a place of brimstone and fire five days a week lately. It’s been miserable for me.

    Fried chicken is good anytime, and even better if it is spicy. Everyone in my dad’s family has a thing for fried chicken. We think it’s genetic.

    I could use some downtime, some more coffee, and a chance to relax. Thanks for asking.

     
  6. mymidnightmuse

    January 11, 2008 at 10:27 am

    See, I just can’t get into the fried chicken thing. Must be my abstract fear of eating fatty stuff. Calories don’t bother me a bit, but fat scares the beegebers outta me. And cold pizza? Good God, man, have you no oven to heat it up in???

    I never could do the cold pizza thing. Probably because soy cheese is best when hot and melty.

     
  7. Pete Tzinski

    January 11, 2008 at 10:30 am

    In THIS country, “reheated,” means “it has been heated up again,” and therefore, I am eating neither cold chicken, nor cold pizza. It was all warm.

    I am less and less into fairly greasy and unhealthy foods. Partially, because I’m consciously trying to eat healthy, and partially because I found that after awhile of NOT eating greasy-fatty foods, it just didn’t sit as well. I find that I have more energy and feel better eating healthy than I did wolfing fried chicken.

    But I can’t help a moment of weakness. I blame southern heritage.

     
  8. tjwriter

    January 11, 2008 at 10:35 am

    I prefer my pizza and my chicken to be heated and warm. Mostly I prefer my hot foods so hot they burn the mouth.

    I have this weird quirk where I like my foods that are supposed to be hot to be very hot and foods that are supposed to be cold to be very cold. The in-between stuff doesn’t sit well with me.

    I drive people crazy with my quirks, mostly.

     
  9. Pete Tzinski

    January 11, 2008 at 10:38 am

    I was mostly raised with the idea that if there’s food, it should be eaten, and particulars like temperature should be worried about later. I can happily eat hot chicken, cold chicken, rubbery warm chicken (well, maybe not always happily, but it goes down and it fills me up the same). It’s what lets me survive going to restuarants and drinking the thing they make in a coffee cup for me which they happily call “tea” but is really just warm water with a bag-thing put in.

     
  10. Shadow T. Ferret

    January 11, 2008 at 10:45 am

    Fried chicken is fat? Chicken is good for you. The breading is part of the grains so vital on the food pyramid.

    And pizza, well, its the food pyramid in the round. Nature’s most perfect food.

    And they all taste yummy cold. Its a different taste than warm.

    Heck, I even like buying hamburgers from fastfood places, putting them in the fridge and eating them COLD later on, too.

    I’m such a savage.

     
  11. mymidnightmuse

    January 11, 2008 at 10:49 am

    No, I knew YOU were eating it hot, but Ed says he likes it cold *shudder*. FRIED anything isn’t exactly done in dandilions, my Ferreted Friend. It’s done in FAT.

     
  12. Pete Tzinski

    January 11, 2008 at 10:51 am

    Okay, cold fast food hamburgers is Right Out. Because they don’t so much “cool” as “congeal,” and it’s awful. But then, I avoid fast food a lot these days (there’s a healthy place that makes terrific tacos and burritos and the like, which are first and foremost, really big and really tasty, and we go there. That’s about it).

     
  13. Shadow T. Ferret

    January 11, 2008 at 10:55 am

    It’s done in oil. Not fat. There’s a difference.

    Oh, oh! Cold tacos and burritos. *drools* Man, you guys are making me hungry!

     
  14. Shadow T. Ferret

    January 11, 2008 at 11:35 am

    And honestly, it’s the congealing of the grease in the hamburger that gives it its robust flavor when cold!

    You guys don’t eat anything cold? Leftover turkey? Spaghetti noodles? Chili? (OK, forget chili.) Meatloaf? (MMM. Cold meatloaf sandwiches!)

     
  15. Pete Tzinski

    January 11, 2008 at 11:37 am

    I was mostly raised with the idea that if there’s food, it should be eaten, and particulars like temperature should be worried about later. I can happily eat hot chicken, cold chicken, rubbery warm chicken

    Quoting myself, just a few comments up.

    Hot food, cold food, give me what you’ve got. Cold meatloaf is divine.

     
  16. Shadow T. Ferret

    January 11, 2008 at 11:38 am

    Just needed to establish that I wasn’t a total freak.

    Just a partial one.

     

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