Wednesday, January 31, 2007
Don't know if I'' have time to join in the fun but maybe the topic will be so tempting that I'll spare a few hundred words from A Cornish House and join in!
So my peaceful day was disturbed with power on and power off but I still managed to add another 2523 words! Best of all I wrote in Mark's first chapter and it felt right. I still may have to go back to the beginning and introduce his voice earlier because it may feel strange having his voice suddenly arriving 100 pages into the book but then again maybe not!
Tuesday, January 30, 2007
I have been thinking about the book. I have been wrestling with Mark - not an unpleasant experience I must say, but that still hasn't put words on the page. I still haven't resolved how to handle Mark or the pace of the story but I have decided that today I will write. It may well turn out to be utter crap but it will break the barrier I have created in my mind.
With August Rock I wrote swiftly through and it was easy. The story line was easier. A Cornish House is more complex and I know that I will have many rewrites to work in the laying I'm missing with this massive push forward. AR did teach me that rewriting is good and not just a royal pain in the butt. So I now know it is only possible to fix what is actually on the page so today I will put words on the page. I will introduce the voices of the two historic women through their letters and diaries today. Mark's voice may not yet enter because I haven't worked out how. But if I accept that his voice will find a place - it will.
There. How's that for being positive. Did I mention I have my youngest home sick from school and she likes lots of attention???
Wednesday, January 24, 2007
Tuesday, January 23, 2007
Not much to report as big ds was still home sick today. Managed to eek out just over 100 words while watching Love Actually and Harry Potter 4 with him. Interesting choice of films I know but a teenager is an interesting creature!
Monday, January 22, 2007
Despite having ill teenage ds moping about managed to reach 18,048. In order to inspire me he put on Saving Grace and I had a tough time concentrate but its such a fabulous film.
We then went on to chose the next two books......I enjoy this and for part of it brought down half of tbr pile. I didn't want to put anyone off! Before I share my tbr pile though I'll tell you the next two books- The Good Earth by Pearl Buck and then one of my favorites from last year An Old-Fashioned Arrangement by Susie Vereker. Since I have read that one will hopefully let me catch up with the tbr pile which is below in no particular order:-
The Prophet Muhammad - Barnaby Rogerson (am half way through and enjoying it)
Old Scores - Bernardine Kennedy (fellow racer)
Decent Exposure - Phillipa Ashley
Spirit Willing Flesh Weak - Julie Cohen
Daughters of the Grail - Elizabeth Chadwick
Away From it All - Judy Astley
A Proper Family Christmas - Jane Gordon-Cumming
Brown Owl's Guide to Life - Kate Harrison (fellow racer)
Practically Perfect - Katie Fforde
So with all the reading above and the ones that are still upstairs it will be amazing if I have time to write let alone spend anytime with my family!
Later I will try again to update the side bar with the three new racers and what I manage to write today (she says optimistically!).
Friday, January 19, 2007
16,467 / 100,000
It's coming on. Right now I'm having to push back from wanting to work again on August Rock but the first draft of A Cornish House must be complete before AR receives another look.
It's been good to see how the other racers are doing. The Friday coffee break at Kate's, http://chicklitworkinprogress.blogspot.com/ is very motivating for me. I couldn't limp in there not having reached my goal of 5000 words. Next week must try and do better though. A few days I felt I was beginning to get into the groove then I let myself be sidetracked! Not good enough. Must find focus.
Thursday, January 18, 2007
I did write today. I set the alarm early - 5:30. I felt I really couldn't fall behind my fellow racers. So I sat to my puter and what did I do. Of course I checked emails and the my blog and then everyone elses blog and behold it was 7:00 and time to wake the dd. So no words there!
Dropped her at school and began in earnest to get something on the page before coffee with gorgeous niece. Finally words began to flow. I mean really flow but the post arrived and in it was another amazon delivery. My tbr is going reach the moon soon. Maybe tomorrow I'll tell you what's on the tbr. Any way in the same pile of post was the awaited report from Hilary Johnson on August Rock. I don't have to give up writing just yet! Work to be done but it's not bad folks. The work will have to wait until the first draft of A Cornish House is complete!
So off to Velazquez in the gales. The exhibition to be honest was a disappointment. I am not sure that it wasn't the crowds but I think it was the paintings they chose. I am not really familiar with his work so I can't say for sure. I loved his early paintings of the intimacy of domestic life. They were vibrant but the later paintings of royals left me cold. I enjoyed the head and shoulders portraits of various people but over all I felt I had missed something. I will have to explore his works more.
So I came back home and sat to write again. Today's word count was 1,640 which brings me to 15,725. Not bad. Now if I could just make the side bar work!!!!
Wednesday, January 17, 2007
14,185 / 100,000
I have tried and tried to get the above onto my side bar. Have done it successfully up until yesterday. It works here but won't work there and by not working it means that I lose the whole side bar. I know that means one piece of code is messed up by I can't find it! So I am making progress despite the what the side bar says!!!
Over on Fiona Harper's blog, http://www.fionaharper.blogspot.com/, she asks some key questions that are helping me wrestle with the character thing. I have been a pantser in the past. I would outline the characters and then write - no great detail. As I wrote the characters spoke to me and told me who they are. There is good discussion of this on CS Harris blog, http://csharris.blogspot.com/.
Well, with A Cornish House, the character are talking a great deal but not revealing much about themselves. I know that is a reflection of their characters in itself but this is a character lead book with me being a plot lead writer.........Help! So Fiona's questions helped cement a few key points in my mind about them and showed me some weak points. So tomorrow will most likely be a none writing day.
I am meeting my gorgeous twenty something niece for coffee and then off to the Velacquez exhibition, http://www.nationalgallery.org.uk/exhibitions/velazquez/default.htm, so I don't see a window of opportunity but I am hoping that the down time will help me work through some of the weak points. Well, one can hope!
Monday, January 15, 2007
Today I managed just over 1250 words - again not a bad day. I have finally hit one of the key turning points in the plot. It will be interesting to see how it builds........
Finally, when I checked my emails this morning there was a google alert for Liz Fenwick on Ann Weale's blog, Bookworm on the Net http://bookwormonthenet.blogspot.com/. This surprised me no end. Anne has been a sucessful author for years and her views on the life and the literary world always provoke thought. I read her blog on a regular basis and have commented here and there along the way. Her entry of Friday 12th January ended as follows:
Right now I must stick to my new Day Plan which includes half an hour's housework every day. How long this good resolution will last...quien sabe? But I'm sticking with it for the time being.
I commented that I was doing the same. Well on Sunday, Anne decided to check me out.....Her results are here http://bookwormonthenet.blogspot.com/2007/01/advice-from-oldie-to-newbie.html as is my reply. As an aspiring novelist I'm pleased to take advice. It's a big, bad, old world in publishing but I think I will pass on this piece.
Saturday, January 13, 2007
August Rock just sort of flowed out and wrote itself - well at least the first draft did. I didn't sweat the details - I wrote. Hence, even after its revision, its a pacy read. A Cornish House is proving to be a different matter. I'm clear on my two lead characters and clear on where I want the story to end but how they get there is a bit of a problem.
This past week words have come pretty well. I'm not sure they are very good but its something to work with. However after slowly going through Jennifer Crusie's Situation vs. Character section I saw the light in several ways. I haven't done character arcs for Serena and Madde let alone any other major character in the book. In fact I'm not fully sure what they are but have a decent idea.
So according to Crusie/Mayer you need to find your week spot. Is it situation or character? Because to write a good book you need both. Well, I still haven't ascertained my blind spot because August Rock was plot driven imo (which means I need to go back and rewrite the damn thing being more character led!) and A Cornish House is trying to be character driven. Here is my stumbling block. If I go back to my first idea it was plot driven. I hadn't drawn my characters well enough even though I clearly felt I had - my arrogance I guess.
So one of the comments raised the old idea of throwing the worst you can at your characters - which I had and then tracing their responses which it turns out I have mulled through but not really thought out properly.
So now I have a page full of notes in my journal with different thoughts about my characters. I now need to read through Jennifer's piece again and let it seep into my brain and mull over the characters and their arc's. Finally see if the plot I have planned for them still works!!!
Friday, January 12, 2007
In the meantime, its coffee time at Kate Harrison's blog, http://chicklitworkinprogress.blogspot.com/. It's great to the progress of the other racers. We have two one to introduce - Sheepish, you can find her here, http://ashepherdstale.blogspot.com/, and Sarah - she's here http://itwontwriteitself.blogspot.com/.
Well, back to Kate's blog to see how all the other's have done this week.
Thursday, January 11, 2007
I'm also wondering where I'm going with the story. I think I have now set up both main character well and developed the love interest a bit. Although I have mind mapped the story I'm leaving it to the flow as how and when they key plot events happens. This could be very unwise. August Rock just flowed with the plot events tumbling out nicely. This is more of a character based book so I'm feeling my way through it blind.
I'm looking forward to tomorrow's coffee break for racers over on Kate Harrison's blog, http://chicklitworkinprogress.blogspot.com/. Hopefully all the racers will report in and we will find some new ones. I am enjoying jumping around to check on progress. Hopefully this will keep me motivated and procrastinating!
Your Dominant Intelligence is Linguistic Intelligence
You are excellent with words and language. You explain yourself well.
An elegant speaker, you can converse well with anyone on the fly.
You are also good at remembering information and convicing someone of your point of view.
A master of creative phrasing and unique words, you enjoy expanding your vocabulary.
You would make a fantastic poet, journalist, writer, teacher, lawyer, politician, or translator.
Tuesday, January 09, 2007
I shall probably find the my hero Mark start to look like Aragon when I write again tomorrow:)
Monday, January 08, 2007
Now that I am in writing mode again my reading dwindles to drip feed except for research. However I have to read Sarah Waters Nightwatch by next Monday for book club. Must get down to the tonight.
But thinking about books led me to think what my top five reads of 2006 were. It was a tough choice and I have devided them by mainstream and catagory - a way of cheating so I could list more!
1. The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield
2. Life Skills by Katie Fforde
3. An Old Fashioned Arrangement by Susie Vereker
4. The Kite Runner by Kalid Hosseini
5. Any Human Heart by William Boyd
1. Blind Date Wedding by Fiona Harper
2. White Hot by Trish Wylie
3. Being a Bad Girl by Julie Cohen
4. Antonakos Marriage by Kate Walker
5.Five Year Baby Secret by LIz Fielding
Friday, January 05, 2007
Thursday, January 04, 2007
If I left writing until I reached London and the kids are back in school I could never hope to catch up. That's my excuse anyway. The word count is now up to 1,635. Not great and would be better if it was now late morning and I do need to get the house ready depart.
Wednesday, January 03, 2007
In my procrasentation I have been searching blogs.....from the Grumpy Old Bookman here I found a link to CS Harris herewho has an interesting discussion of crafting of a book and currently working on characters. She has put up a list of her favorite character and also of those who she would want to have a relationships with. I won't try that today - to much procrastenation really! However I think it is interesting that Rasored Zen here who commented on her blog chose all his favorite female characters from male authors.......another item to comtemplate.
On a more concrete line I send thanks to the Teach Me tonight Blog here . A reference there sent me to Jennifer Cruise / Bob Mayer workshop He Wrote She Wrote here. The first installment of the workshop talks about the One Sentence Idea. That has forced some concrete ideas out into the journal. I hate trying to sum up my intent for the novel but I can see how this can possibly make the story easier to write . However it might spoil the surprises that seem to occur out of mid air when I get in the full throws of writing.
Having said the above, I realize that by instict rather than design those first 250 words really do throw up the intent of the novel -the clash between the generations. Their search to find common ground and how often they miss the target. Of course I what to show how love untimately builds the brides and mixing metaphors provides the translation required.
So although it's nearly eleven this morning and I haven't written a single new word, I do have a clearly idea in my mind about what the story is ultimately about. So here's to productive procrastenation.
Tuesday, January 02, 2007
Along the lines of research for A Cornish House, my mil is guiding my hand from above again. I was looking through the book shelves wondering where to start on the the house for the book. I know which house and where but I needed details of Cornish vernacular style and what do my eyes fall on but another of June's wonderful books......A Cornishman's House. The answer to my prayers as it even has a bit on the house in question!
So I will have to get a word counter onto the blog and you can watch this challenge progress!