Fess Up Friday

So this is my one thing I know for sure : I can either blog, or I can write, but I cannot do both in the same week. This blog has been woefully ignored since the past weekend when I had something of a mini-blogging explosion, but rest assured this means I have, actually, been writing! I am nearing the close of chapter eight of my novel and there is the high probability I may even finish it this morning after I’m through here. Chapter eight has been a struggle to write…not as difficult as six and seven, where I basically ended up just summarizing event after event to get to the end, and not nearly as easy as some of the earlier chapters…chapter eight is somewhere in between. I am now at the point where I have to fight the overwhelming urge to go back and revise…because I have always, since i started, HATED the opening graph and I now have two possible alternate chapters to begin the novel, but see, I recognize what this urge is, and it’s a Distraction From Finishing. Revising, see, is for another time – in Anne Lamott style I must commit to a shitty first draft! So, onward.

I also decided to move the timeline of the novel forward about ten years. This is going to SUCK upon revision…Ben served in Iraq instead of Somalia, is what I’ve decided. It’s going to be frustrating in terms of the ages of all the characters and fixing those details, but easier in terms of developing his character. I’ll have to fix some of the atmospheric development as well but again, this can all be in the revision process.

I also spent the tiniest amount of times on the early, early beginnings of a mystery series idea – set in Pittsburgh.  I took one of the opening graphs of an abandoned short story and thought the heroine might be perfect for such a series…I’ve made some preliminary character sketches but I will not work on this until my first draft of my other novel is done as this is the Oldest Trick In the Book from Distraction…coming up with another book idea while working on your current one. If you turn to the other book it’s a surefire thing neither will be completed. So I’m just keeping a file of ideas for now.

Blogging – obviously, I didn’t blog one bit. I am hoping to make up for that over the weekend.

Reading – I started Animal, Vegetable, Miracle – and I love it so, so much. I’ve read everything Barbara Kingsolver has written and she never ceases to amaze me. This is my book for the Ecojustice Challenge and it’s just perfect – it will get it’s own post, soon, as will a discussion on my failure to thus far cook a local meal.  I also started reading Firefly Lane – so far I’m pretty blah about it. I chose it spontaneously, not familiar with Kristin Hannah’s work – and I bought it because I loved the blurb…something like “for anyone who ever drank Boone’s Farm wine and listened to Fleetwood Mac” but so far I’m not overly in love. MY novel, now THAT will be for anyone who ever drank Boone’s Farm wine while listening to Garth Brooks and/or Pearl Jam on some beach somewhere at night while back home their fathers were falling into drunken stupors, which they did every night, but you don’t care because you are busy making out with your boyfriend or girlfriend and planning on escaping to New York City…” but okay, here’s the thing…if Ben goes to Iraq instead of Somalia then he and Anna will be so much younger than I want them to be! ARGH. I need to brush up on my history of the 1990s –

I think it’s time for me to leave, here. If all goes as planned I’ll probably be here quite a bit this weekend to update on my Nesting Project and Losing my Feminism, complete with pictures!

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8 Responses to Fess Up Friday

  1. bloglily says:

    CHAPTER 8! You rule. And the mystery series? Sounds awesome. Just keep it in the back of your mind. Sure, maybe it’s procrastinating. But at least it’s potentially fruitful procrastinating. xo, L

  2. yogamum says:

    You are cruising right along! Awesome!!

  3. nova says:

    It sounds like you’ve accomplished so much! What a week! I wish you smooth sailing to the other side of chapter eight… then to nine, and ten, and beyond.

  4. Andi says:

    Ooh ooh! I just picked up Animal, Vegetable, Miracle on my vacation in the mountains! I’ve had trouble committing to a book lately, but I’ve had NO problems with this one. I LOVE Kingsolver’s style, and the subject matter is something I’m so intensely interested in I can hardly stand to lay the book aside. I haven’t read any of her other stuff, but now I’m tempted to read all of her stuff beginning with her other non-fic.

    Congrats on all the writing! Yay for shitty first drafts!

  5. Litlove says:

    You’re doing brilliantly, Courtney! Just keep at it!

  6. Emily Barton says:

    Forget blogging. Hurry up and finish that novel! I want to read it. (Says the one who’s written 20 pages of her novel, wants to re-write all those already, and spends all her time blogging).

  7. Katie says:

    I used to read more fiction… so I actually know some Barbara Kingsolver! I read the Bean Trees in high school and loved it, and I read the one about the missionary family in Africa… the something Bible. Poisonwood Bible? Anyway, great author.

    I will give you a call sometime this week and work on being a better phone person! We need to catch up on more than people’s annoying facebook habits, for sure.

  8. I look forward to your post about Barbara Kingsolver’s book. I just borrowed it from the library.
    I have never read her fiction, I like her essays/memoirs.
    Good luck with all your writing.

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