I don’t know if any of YOU guys have been wondering where I disappeared to, but I find that I have been wondering, myself. I seem to have been floundering in some alternate universe where I can’t even keep up with my blogs lately. That has got to stop. Must. Get. Control. Or at least fake it well enough that no one knows I’m in freefall, down here. So, here is my attempt to touch base with those of you who are kind enough to follow this blog.
Where have I been? Writing. Yes, writing. Just not blogging. Some of you know I got the wild idea a few months ago that I was finally going to sit down and write a book. An actual book, with wordies on pages, and covers and all, as the Wee Free Men might say. I don’t have any idea of why I decided I was going to do this, except that it was something I’ve wanted to do since I was about five years old, yet never attempted. To my shock and dismay, I realized on my 69th birthday that time was flying by. (“Like sands through the hourglass, so go the Days Of Our Lives”). Soon, writing anything…even signing my own name…could cease to be an option. Do or die time…literally. Consider my writing a book something I wanted to tick off of my pre-Bucket List. (I’m refusing to admit that it might also be time for me to start a REAL one.)
Yesterday, I finished my story. I have written a beginning, a middle, and an ending, and have the Beta readers to prove it. I call it a story because it now needs to be slapped and bullied and mangled into becoming something that could pass for the aforementioned actual book. I have the plot laid out from start to finish, and I have developed my characters to the point that I’m compelled to set extra places at the table for them every night. But it is not a book, yet. Things will have to get bloody before I can claim that.
Tomorrow, I begin the editing and revision process that I hope will leave me with a finished product I can publish. I will be going back through every chapter with a scalpel…okay, with a machete and a flamethrower…mercilessly hacking away all the stuff that doesn’t belong. I will be a brutal Inquisitioner, demanding to know if each and every line adds anything to the story, and is therefore worth keeping, or if the lines in question are merely self-indulgent crap, clogging up my prose like a hairball in a drainpipe. (See what I did there? We writers can make those sorts of comparisons with impunity, because…well…ummm…okay…you got me. There really is no reason for saying something like that, except that we can!)
Anyhoo…with any luck at all, hacking and trimming and pruning will not be as all-consuming as trying to make the plot come together in a sequence of events that makes sense. Therefore, if all goes well, I should find myself freed up for more reading, more reviewing, and more blogging. At least that’s my plan. Wish me luck!