April 21st, 2007


and this, my friends...

...this is the sound of the author slamming into a brick wall.

Me, I have to do significant edits on paper. I've been able to add a couple scenes in, tighten up a bunch of writing, relatively minor stuff of that ilk, on screen, and I hadn't really thought about having to take the printout and start really marking it up now that I have a clearer idea of what I'm doing with the story. I got through chapter 5 that way, and midway through chapter 6 went WHAM: too much to do to hold it in my head. Must go back to the printout and start cutting things (oh, God, the amount of stuff I have to cut) and start figuring out how to stitch it all together to put the new material in (oh God, the amount of new material I have to write).

I now have two printouts: the original draft from last week with its wee little markups on it, and the revision draft with the first six chapters. I'm a little leery of trying to mark up the entire original draft right now: I bet it's smarter to go through the next three chapters or so and figure out how just the next *bit* works before I try to move past that. Right. So I'm off to do that, I am.

Boy. I had vague hopes of getting through chapter 10 by the end of the weekend. If I do that, man, I will be a god among men, I tell you. A veritable god among men.

ytd wordcount: 65,800
miles to Minas Tirith: 78

big ship!

The first big ship of the season, the Constellation, was in Cobh today, and there must've been three or four hundred people who turned out to see it off, all of them spread all the way up and down the town's waterfront. I'd been meaning to check to see when it'd be in, to see if there was any fuss about seeing it off, but only saw it out of pure chance, so I was totally ridiculously happy to catch it. And there was fuss, with a band playing and people waving and cheering and singing and it was quite wonderful. *beam* Apparently the biggest ship to ever come into Cobh will be here Tuesday (and there's another, not as large, that'll be here Monday). I must remember to go see it, and bring my camera.

I *love* those big ships. They're so absurdly huge, they utterly throw off one's sense of proportion about the world. The *cathedral* in this town does that, because it's up there on this massive jutting rock, and it's this beautiful little Victorian town beneath it and then there's this disconcerting massive Gothic cathedral sitting above it, but the ships are even more absurd. Walking alongside one (especially if it's beginning to move) is like walking beside a cliff that's starting to shift. There's *nothing* but the ship in your peripheral vision. It's incredibly bizarre.

miles to Minas Tirith: 83
daily life

The Old Man

On a sufficiently different note from the last entry I thought it warranted its own, Mom reminded me that today would have been my grandfather's 100th birthday. He was a poet and a writer and a terrible old grump, and believed that the best way to get to know somebody was to get into an argument with him. He lived with us my whole life, so a person learned to defend an argument pretty early in my house. :) He emigrated from County Tyrone in 1927, two months after he turned twenty, and returned to Ireland for the first time 63 years later, in 1990. He was nearly impossible to buy gifts for, although when I was in my teens I accidentally bought him a book he was genuinely delighted with: DON'T KNOW MUCH ABOUT HISTORY. I'm still somewhat amazed that it was a success.

The other gift, of sorts, that I gave him that was a success was telling him that my first book would be dedicated to him. I really expected him to be around when I got published (it did not seem possible that the Old Man would die), but one afternoon, for some reason--I guess as a sort of just in case--I told him quite impulsively that I was going to dedicate my first book to him. The dedication wasn't impulsive--I'd known for a long time I'd do that--but telling him was, and he was...completely astonished. He died later that fall, and I am so incredibly, incredibly glad I told him. And URBAN SHAMAN is, in fact, dedicated to Frances John Joseph McNally Malone, who would've been proud of me.

So if you have a moment, raise a glass to the Old Man, and to all the old men and women in your lives, too. I miss you, Grandpa.
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