Freedom From The Mundane - A Writer's Blog

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Paperback Writing

It was a beautiful morning over Edinburgh. It was fresh with blue skies and a strong hint of a warm day impending. Then I walked into the office and felt like smashing the walls down with a sledgehammer. We had been told we were moving to a new building in a couple of months - a state of the art modern building - but that's been put off for another year. Which means this building won't be getting renovated for months yet.

Wonderful. It's always been the case that the I.S. department gets shat on when it comes to nice environments and state of the art equipment. The business areas that actually deal with customers get gleaming desks with shiny new PC's in sensitive air-conditioned offices with large windows that open. We get tiny desks, ten year-old PC's, no air-conditioning, windows that don't open, ant-infested carpets and polluted toilets. The whole thing stinks - literally.

You can tell I'm enjoying my working week, can't you?

Worked through chapters four to nine of Hunting Jack. Still stripping out surplus words and phrases, trying to keep controlled and focussed on showing the action, not telling it, painting the pictures, not talking about them.

It's a measure of how far my writing is moving that fact that I previously couldn't see these areas for improvement, let alone methods of fixing them. It's more challenging, but tonnes of fun. It's not half a strain on the wrists though. I never am able to type fast enough for my brain and you know, I still think my 'voice' is developing.

I've completed part one of the Stella manuscript edits (in red ink only). I've still to apply them to the master, but I'll wait until the whole process is complete before standing back to admire. I think it's a superb story, like nothing I've done before. If they made it into a film it would have to be directed by Tarantino, not for any violence in it (there's minimal fighting), but because of the relation between reality and fantasy. It's a mixture of them both, but where the lines are drawn the user is left to decide.

Almost complete read-through number two of my friend's novel manuscript. I've enjoyed it just as much the second time round, but now I'm almost done, I'll be writing up what I think very shortly. It's a super read, one deserving of being expanded more and tangents applied. What the author does with it though, is entirely up to her.

That's the beauty of novelists. You can get entangled in the world they create, and hope the characters go one way, choose one direction. But the writer is God and all decisions are up to him or her. Frustrating - sometimes, engaging - you bet.

Watched some Billy Connolly on tour in Australia on the Living Channel, or something like that, before I went to bed. Then I couldn't go to bed for the tears streaming down my face with laughter. He's some man and despite what a lot of people say about him, especially in Scotland, he's a true Scot and a true gentleman. We should be proud of him.

'nuff said.

Colin 11:03 am


Cool. It's nice to read about other writers working hard and struggling through their own manuscripts.

(Searched for writer blogs and am randomly commenting.)
Ant-infested carpets! Uuuuuugh.
I'm keeping fingers and toes crossed that Hunting Jack is the beginning of your ticket out of that anthill!

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