Sunday, September 17, 2006
Poet of the Week
There was an amazing fog came down last night, also. I forgot to mention it. It had been cloudy all day yesterday; cloudy and muggy, and as late afternoon moved into early evening, the mist began to fall. By the time darkness had fallen, so too had a thick layer of fog over the entire city. From my window in my office, where I would normally have been able to the see the houses and street lights of Lochend beyond the walkway, there was thick clouds and small circles of orange.
I awarded myself with a small lie-in today. Well, till 10am, anyway. I got up and got ready, cursing myself for forgetting to buy deodorant yesterday. Never mind, the raw smell of soap would have to do. I nipped round to the shops to get some rolls, a paper and wholemeal bread. When I got home I remembered I had forgotten then most important thing I meant to get - coffee!! I've got enough until tomorrow if I ration my cups today between tea.
Sat down to work at about 1pm. I've been having a discussion on a forum - one of those newsgroups with the alt address. Some guy was going on about all the different types of writing software available, ones that prompt your next word when you are typing and organises your thoughts, stuff like that.
I wrote an email asking if it would be able to help me in the actual craft of my writing. There was an element of sarcasm but it was merely to make a point. Boy did I stir it up. He wrote back (publicly), and to cut a long story short, the gist of it was this. He seems to look down on fiction writers because they don't need to do research, don't think about what they are doing, or - and get this - technical writers (like him) "put more effort in a single page than a fiction writer puts in a whole book." Needless to say I replied with a polite, but vehement argument.
Great news!! I am Poet of the Week for today until next Saturday night at the Poetry Super Highway. Go check it out!!! They published National Portrait, Festival TV, and Always the Clown.
I read my pal's latest story inspired by the exercises we're doing. This was a much longer one, but it was so well written I couldn't stop reading. I felt guilty at having read it so fast, so I made a coffee and read it again, only this time, much slower. My original instinct was correct though, the story pulls you in quick and takes you on a speedy journey with twists and turns. The crit I typed up afterwards said more or less the same thing.
I ran through Water of Leith a couple of times and sent it off to my pal for her opinion, also. The next exercise is to take one of the characters from the previous stories and write a new story in first person from their point of view. I'm drawn immediately to DI Lennox, but I need to find a story to apply it to. I'll keep an open mind to the other characters, but he feels most likely and the most enjoyable. I just need to keep him away from Thorne, Morse, Rebus, Taggart et al.
I began typing up a short story I wrote a couple of months ago. Wide Awake is something like 14 pages long in an A5 book, and it is very, very rough. Having been written on a train to Newcastle, it is a poorly constructed story. Main thing first though, is to get it typed up then I can begin moulding it.