WHERE IS THE LINE WITH YOU?
I’ve been working on The Everlasting pretty diligently since Clamp School Paranormal Investigators was turned in. I realized yesterday that much of what I had done in the last ten days I want to shuffle around, though. I have an idea for a way to maybe make it more dramatic. What I am going to do is finish writing on the track I started, and when I get to where the scene break would be, I’m going to print out the section in question, set aside the file, and start over in a completely new file. That way I will have the two versions to compare and contrast.
Amidst all this, I have been debating whether or not to insert an important element about Percy, Lance’s younger brother, into the narrative. A pattern in the Scott boys’ behavior has emerged, and though the payoff for Percy’s part in the pattern won’t be until They Are All In Love, it might have a significance to the overall arc of Lance at this point in the game that will work well. The question came up, though, of what if it didn’t? What if it felt like I was just shoehorning it in as a cute hint of things to come? Maryanne Huntzinger and I traded a bunch of e-mails over this, and ultimately it came down to, try it and if I don’t like it, throw it out. Which was a good thing to remind myself I could do. We, as writers, often forget that just because we wrote it that way, we aren’t stuck with it until it’s printed. So, why not try it?
Similarly, I wrote the first version of the epilogue to the book today. I did something similar with Cut My Hair. I wrote the last page around the same time I wrote the first chapter, and worked my way to it. What lead to my doing this now was two epiphanies: a moment in the Mira Nair film version of Vanity Fair and an excerpt from the novel Tom Jones that Jen De Guzman (who I always imagien smells like curry (in a good way)) posted in her live journal. (The difference between Jen and I is that she, being a smart person, would read the books Vanity Fair and Tom Jones, and me, being a bear with very little brain, would see the adaptations.)
All of this creative top spinning actually makes up for the fact that the last hour was spent gathering my financial information for checking in with my accountant over my upcoming quarterly payment. I’ve been diligent with setting aside portions of my freelance checks, though, having learned from watching the mistakes of others in my years as an editor, and am hoping that I end up with a good surplus once the year is through.
Current Soundtrack: Tindersticks, Simple Pleasure (remastered), disc 2; Bjork, Medulla
[to leave comments, click on the time-stamp below, then scroll down on the new page] – All material (c) 2004 Jamie S. Rich