July 23, 2014

You Get the Picture

It's been a while since I posted anything about this new novel I'm working on. That's because after I did a bunch of planning and a lot of research and then some more planning, I wasn't sure how to proceed. I still needed to figure out many aspects of the story, and I didn't really know enough about the facts, and it was all rather intimidating. I went off and wrote some other stuff for a bit, and I wrote nothing for a time, and I let myself get distracted by unrelated things. Somehow none of that resulted in progress on the novel. But now I finally have a much stronger grip on the story, and I'm feeling far more confident about getting somewhere. So it's the perfect time to get caught up in the excitement of a vacation and forget all about the novel again!

I'm really looking forward to visiting my family. I'm also happy about feeling that when I get back from the trip, I'll be eager to move forward with this novel instead of continuing to avoid it.

In a couple of other areas, I've made more visible progress:

I'm pleased to report that my new/old Polaroid camera is functional! I was able to purchase the appropriate battery and film, but I wasn't certain I really had it working until I peeled apart the first photograph. I'd braced myself for disappointment, so seeing a clear image there was kind of astounding, perhaps what it might have felt like to encounter a Polaroid for the very first time.

Here, meta-ly, is a photo of my first four photos:

First four photos from Polaroid Land Model 250

For the purposes of Summer Reading Bingo, the season is a bit more than halfway over, so I thought I'd share the current state of my bingo card:

BOTNS Bingo - July

I've completed 12 of the 25 squares so far, and it's possible I could fill the entire card by Labor Day. I'm not necessarily going to attempt it, but my upcoming travels will offer me plenty of reading time. So I'll have more squares filled in, and more books to post about, once I return.

Good Stuff Out There:

→ Jennifer R. Hubbard writes about finding purposes for elements in a story: "I had no specific purpose in mind for the brother and thought he might get cut out later. Instead, he showed up for Thanksgiving dinner with a subplot that was relevant to the theme of secrecy, and he hung around to guide the main character through the book's main crisis."

→ Mary Robinette Kowal explains why she asked another author to rewrite her dialogue: "So, when I decided to set a book with a lot of action in Antigua, I knew that I wanted to represent the Antiguan Creole English. I also knew, from having watched people mangle the Southern American English, that understanding the nuances was going to be really, really important and really, really hard. Harder than making my books sound like Jane Austen? Yes."

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