7.02.2010

The Mystique of Namelessness and other stories

The third full revision of a novel is fun, but not quite as fun as the second. Most of the good parts get to be typed through without much touch-up, which leaves me spending the majority of my time struggling with all the hard parts. The first three chapters were the worst, I hope. I'm still not quite happy with them.

But I love being close to the story again, knowing the characters and feeling what they feel. Sometimes I just close my eyes and let myself walk through a scene in one character's head, trying to understand what they're sensing.

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I am officially tired of renaming characters. With a couple of very important exceptions, almost everyone in my book has had at least one name change, sometimes two. Today I've wrestled with the fact that in my first drafts, one character didn't have a name--I referred to him as "the head of the council," which proved understandably annoying for the beta readers.

He has a name now, but giving it out too easily takes away from his mystique, the distance and authority of his character, and it doesn't work well with the proper forms of introduction and address. So I'm trying out different titles, and cannot seem to get used to any of the various possibilities. The one I like best causes some first-letter issues (too many capital P's on the page) but I'm tempted to let that slide or make it uncapsed. Hmm. At least it doesn't start with A.

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Mr. Pond doesn't like my new word, but I've got to admit--well, first, that the word blog does sound like a horrible squelching noise in a swamp, but also that diablogue is kind of ugly. It sounds devilish, maybe because it has "diablo" in it. Mr. Pond's brother Eric suggests "blogalogue" for the advantage of assonance, which makes sense although I'm not sure I would have pulled the base word out of that just by looking. Which do you like better?

Either way, I hope to have another installment on Monday and you can read Mr. Pond's latest at the above link. I'm having fun with this; it gives me something to write about. Would you like to have a blog-conversation with A Light Inside? If you respond to one of my posts with a post of your own, and link it in the comments to the post you're responding to, I'll check it out and see if I can respond. Please, no hot-button politics, but anything else goes. I think. :)

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A lot of things have been written about being childless. This is one of the most beautiful I've ever found. I've never been much of a poet, but sometimes there need to be less words, not more, to express something.

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Most awesome line I've read this week: "Instead of drugs I just went to my “happy place,” which is currently the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Orlando."--Jon Acuff. (Note: by drugs, he means novocaine.)

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Other best line, all over Twitter but coming to you courtesy of @theknightshift: "Twilight is like World Cup soccer. They run around for 2 hours, nobody scores, and a billion fans insist that 'you just don't understand.' "

Seriously, people, you just don't understand. :)

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Helpful line for writers: "The second best cure for writer’s block is other creative endeavors. Most writers I know are accomplished in other arts as well. I used to think it was “cheating” to draw or dance when I “should” be writing. Now I understand: The arts all nourish one another."--Jan Underwood

This is true. Music helps me a lot. And I'm not sure anyone can call my dancing "art", but after a long day of writing Thursday, I rocked out to Ministry of Magic for awhile. I'm pretty sure I pulled every muscle in the back of my right leg, but it was fun and it cleared my mind.

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This article, amusingly titled Death by Ham: Playing the odds of getting published, made me feel better about a lot of things.

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I clicked on this video simply because after a couple of weeks of seeing the word everywhere, I wanted to know what a vuvuzela was. Now I know.



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After all my complaining about the weather yesterday, and a morning cold and damp enough that I actually ran the heat, this afternoon the clouds have parted, the sun is out, and I took a walk and am now sitting with the door open. Life is good.

Happy Fourth of July, everybody, and enjoy the rest of the weekend too. America, I love you!

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