And hello again, dreamers. I know I normally post my Writer’s Desk on Sunday evenings, but needless to say I found myself a mite distracted last night. All is good, the storm is past and my sister checked in safe, so it’s back to work. And there’s plenty to do this week.
My single, foremost, overriding goal this week is to finish the rewrites of Wide Horizon. It’s been difficult, but I feel I’ve identified the problem. As I’ve said before, when you’ve been working on a project for years, it can be hard to rework things. The more I’ve thought about it, the more I’ve come to feel that my problem lies in an unwillingness to let go: I keep trying to find ways to insert new text into existing paragraphs, and while normally that would make sense, when I’m trying to fundamentally change the nature of a passage it’s frustrating.
As such, this week I’m trying something new with several of the passages that really need work: I’m starting fresh. While I won’t simply be going in and cutting vast tracts of text, I will be finding a starting point, and attempting from there to write out a totally new passage. I know I can do this. I can see these conversations in my head, I can hear the characters talking, and doggone it, it sounds good. But every time I try to write it, I keep trying to just modify the existing passages to incorporate the new dialogue. It’s like playing two similar conversations over one another. It’s discordant. So, it’s time to crumple and type. Wish me luck.
It’s been a week for flashes of insight that have yet to pan out. Recently, I’ve had something of an epiphany with Pathfinder, one I can only hope will translate into the kind of jumping-off point I had with Wide Horizon.
As my more seasoned followers may know, Wide Horizon began with a single passage. I had an idea, a clear concept, and what began with a few sentences ballooned into about nine pages of text. It was then, at that very moment, when it finally dawned on me that I could actually do it. I could write a novel. That single passage set the tone for the entire novel. It became Wide Horizon‘s beating heart. That’s what I feel I have right now: a very clear idea, one that could help to frame the entire story. If I can get that down, I might finally be able to translate Pathfinder seamlessly onto paper.
Short Fiction (and Submissions of Said)
There’s been a flurry of activity in my short fiction of late.
First of all, my more diligent readers no doubt remember my mentions of a new novel idea: Reclaimer, a post-apocalyptic story set in a future where humanity acted too late to counter climate change. The entire story evolved from background notes I’d taken for a short story. Well, irony of ironies, I’ve found myself back at square one, with short fiction. The Reclaimer novel concept has sputtered; try as I may, I can’t really come up with a developed plot line. Certainly nothing to base an entire novel on. So, for now, I’ve gone back to the short story idea. Tentatively, my intention is to break what I had of Reclaimer into pieces, developing each into an independent short story which, though not serialized, would be linked by a common framework. Most likely these stories (at least a few of them) will be posted here, so keep looking for that.
Beyond that, I’m working on several rewrites in preparation for further submissions. Also, as of today I’ve submitted Presence to Strange Horizons. I should hear back from them within two weeks, so for now fingers crossed, knock on wood, and all that.
A lot of work ahead, to be sure. But things feel like they’re falling back into place. I might finally be hitting my stride again. Time alone will tell. Until then, keep reading, and dare to dream.