Is the lucky number of today. 214. More than twice the length of my master's thesis. Which took 3 years to write. This has taken 3 weeks. What is up with the universe?
This whole process is causing me to have to eat a lot of my words. I have always been seriously against the notion that stories come from some other universe that the writer somehow taps into and "channels" the characters onto the page. The whole, "Sorry Hannibal is so gross, but that's just what he did and I had to write it," school of thought. Are you a writer or are you some sort of clairvoyant?! I used to say.
Uh, some sort of clairvoyant it is.
This weekend, as I approached 200 pages, I got overexcited and forced a scene that wasn't totally together. I kind of knew it, and then I read a really interesting article about love stories, and how once the main characters are finally together, writers tend to lose their minds briefly, and everyone falls out of character and does insane stuff, or suddenly the writer forgets that sitting around thinking about feelings is not the same as having a plot.
So I thought about it, and I knew there was something not so excellent about this scene and I got up in the morning and rewrote it. And it still wasn't right. There were things I had liked about the original version and I was trying to preserve them which just wasn't going to happen. Kill your darlings, indeed. So on the third try it came out well, and took the story in a direction that I had hoped for but had not yet figure out how to do...so that was nice and put me back on track. I'm messing with some epistolary stuff now...
This is the most fun I've had in years.
In other news, I talked to my friend Jennifer this weekend and she reported that she is reading Wonderful Tonight, the Patty Boyd story. I asked her if I could borrow it when she was done, as I am a huge Beatles fan and very interested in some of her story and lots of her photography.
But the whole point of this story is that Jennifer always likes to tell me that she has read one book in her life and that it was Helter Skelter. Causing me to make lots of jokes about how once you've read Helter Skelter, you've read everything. Everything else is just a rehash. So it's kind of great that she's lending me a book. Even though I'm not reading right now, which is still really weird to me.
Furthermore, when I came home from walking tonight, stinky and dripping with sweat, I opened the door and smelled fire. I started to yell for Thomas, until I noticed that the fire in question was candles and that the dining room table was set with a tablecloth and flowers and wine and that Thomas had made me a lovely romantic dinner of lobster bisque, salad, steak, zucchini and shrimp. With strawberries for dessert. And everything matched and he used all our lovely dishes. And the flowers--they were bright red spider gerbers, and I couldn't have picked a better vase for them myself.
So all is well. And that is all until my next page update. :)