• Cut But Still Good,  Random Ramblings

    A subdued companion

    I’ve probably mentioned four million and two times that my novel has changed a lot (I may be exaggerating, but only a little). Here’s another example, back from when Davonte was Dante and a man:

    Dante’s anger used to be explosive, a force as large as his build. Now he carries it, a subdued companion that is always present but rarely speaks by itself.

  • Cut But Still Good,  Random Ramblings

    By 1035 I have a headache

    In my endeavor to show and not tell, the part of my novel that covers this is a lot longer now, even though Danielle’s been cut out entirely.

    At 0930 the jury unanimously decides to convict. At 1002, an APB is put out for Denielle’s arrest. At 1031 I learn about the WhoDidYouVoteFor project. By 1035 I have a headache.

    I’m conflicted by the idea that it’s better to “show” when, as a writer, every piece of fiction I write is a story I’m telling. I think one real mark of a talented writer is knowing what to show and what to tell.

  • Cut But Still Good

    Projecting my desire for solitude

    From a scene that ended up turning into a different scene, one this didn’t fit into:

    Buttoning my gray coat and turning the collar up against the wind, I walk parallel to the water, projecting my desire for solitude. Not in a way that will intrude on thoughts or conversation, but enough that anyone forming a telepathic link with me would understand. I want to be left alone.

  • Dead Before They Know Who
    Cut But Still Good,  Random Ramblings

    It happens at Calloway Fair

    If a future version of myself traveled back in time and gave me her finished, published version of my novel, and I then took that and published it…did I ever write the finished version?

    Surprisingly, I haven’t watched any Doctor Who tonight, or anything involving time travel at all.

    My novel used to have a mass shooting in it. It’s something I cut a while ago – it had started to feel like I was trying to include every modern issue ever. Rereading the paragraph below, I can’t help but think I need to make it to a gun range to hear gunfire. There’s only so far you can get from reading about it online.

    It happens at Calloway Fair. Those in the immediate vicinity are dead before they know who or why or from where. Those on the opposite side of the mall don’t understand. They hear what sounds like fireworks, what sounds like cars backfiring. They aren’t afraid. Why should they be? It’s Saturday afternoon, three weeks before Christmas, and everyone is enjoying some holiday shopping. Then the screaming reaches them and they know. It’s happening here. They panic, run in every direction, some even toward the gunshots because they can’t tell where, exactly, they’re coming from.

    I also can’t help but laugh at the line “…everyone is enjoying some holiday shopping” because I can’t stand the mall, and the busier it is, the more I can’t stand it. As someone who was at a mall on Saturday

  • Empty Bed
    Cut But Still Good,  Imagined Snippets,  Random Ramblings,  Story Excerpts

    Death is always an empty bed

    I didn’t get any work on my novel done this weekend. I won’t be working on in next weekend while I’m in Fresno for Christmas so I’ll need to focus on it after work this week to make sure my progress doesn’t stagnate.

    This will be a super short blurb this week. It’s something that sort of made it into the novel:

    <Death is always an empty bed.>

  • War Purring Cat
    Cut But Still Good,  Story Excerpts

    Plenty of time for you to talk to Davonte

    I have a warm purring cat in my lap. Life is good.

    I think I’m going to nix the gender neutral pronouns in my novel. Not enough characters use them. As an experiment, I updated a section in Chapter 2 to include the doctor using the gender neutral pronouns. I don’t think it adds enough to the story to be worth the confusion:

    Marconi straightens and sees me. <Ah. There you are. How are you feeling?>

    <Perfectly well, thank you. Your handiwork?>

    <Yes. Davonte brought you both straight to me.>

    <How’s Carson?>

    <Better. Yils condition was dire at first. Yi’s likely gifted, mindcraft wise. Allucinari is worse the stronger you are. I’m keeping yil sedated until the drug leaves yils system. It’s kinder this way.>

    I’m surprised. <I thought you’d be able to give him the cure.>

    <Cure is not quite the right term. It prevents someone from being susceptible to the drug in the future but doesn’t do anything to alleviate the symptoms of someone who is already infected.>

    <So it won’t work on him at all?>

    She hesitates. <I will give yil the inoculation as soon as the drug clears yils system and it will prevent yil from being susceptible to further harm should yi ever be dosed with allucinari again.> 

    Good. <Will there be any permanent damage?>

    Another hesitation. <No.>

    Walking the rest of the way inside, I come to stand beside Carson. His hair is a mess of floppy curls. I must not have noticed it

  • Cut But Still Good,  Random Ramblings

    Left to tiptoe around each other

    I read half of Part Three today. I’ll read the second half tomorrow, and then it will be time to jump into a round of serious fixes. I’m determined to get this novel in shape and published.

    A lot has changed in this story, especially in the last year. Here’s a paragraph I liked but had to half get rid of:

    Days pass. Then a week. Then two, three, four. We breathe more easily, tension I wasn’t entirely conscious of making itself known by its absence. No one saw. Carson is safe, and we’re left to tiptoe around each other instead of the world.