The Writing Moment

He and the muses were kicking around what to do at this juncture in the novel. Four hundred pages in, it’s a critical point. Lot of reveals to be brought to the story. He needs to get it done but doesn’t want to rush or force it. He’s mindful, too, yeah, this is the first draft. He’s still learning the story. Don’t overthink things.

He ended up spending time over the last four days editing and revising, working his way through the first two hundred pages while his mind dances with approaches to what comes next. Trust yourself, he urges himself. Don’t get cocky, he reminds himself, but also don’t get depressed, and don’t fail into a trap of overanalyzing what you’re doing. Write what you want to read.

He really enjoyed most of the story but then, he felt severe disappointment with one stretch. Why, that’s absolute crap, he told himself. It was not what he wanted to read. He wouldn’t read it. It needed to be treated like a deep infection.

That understanding came but also fertilized recognition that a new approach was needed for this aspect. Weirdly, he felt optimistic that he had a grip on it.

Or maybe not weirdly. He’s a writer, and that’s what they do, always believing, I got this.

Good for Something

My home weather station claims the air outside is now over 112 F. Alexas says it’s 108 F in Ashland, as does Accuweather on the net. It’s a good time to be not outside.

The heat is good for something as long as you’re protected and a person of leisure, as I claim I am. Just finished reading The Killer Angels, All Systems Red: the Murderbot Diaries, which is the first book of the Murderbot Diaries, and Suspect by Robert Crais.

The 1974 historical novel by Michael Shaara, The Killer Angels, interested me for three reasons. One, it won the Pulitzer Prize. Secondly, Joss Whedon said that this was the novel which inspired a seriously entertaining and short-lived series, “Firefly” and its subsequent movie, Serenity. The browncoats among you will understand. Third, The Killer Angels is about the Battle of Gettysburg, and I knew little about that battle. In truth, I know little about most battles. Battles aren’t things which I’ve studied.

It was a gripping novel, full of powerful scenes and descriptions, lively with emotions and the complexities that a battle during the American Civil War needs to have. Much of the POV was Lee and Longstreet’s perspectives, along with Chamberlain, but others were portrayed. It’s a well-written book. How much is true? I vetted a great deal, but you know how it can be when dealing with history.

After that, All Systems Red: the Murderbot Diaries was a fast, quick, easy read. Martha Wells created an entertaining, pitch-perfect character and delivered a delicious setting and plot, all quite deftly, seamlessly accomplished. It won high awards and deep praise, and deservedly so. I’ve added volumes two and three to my library hold list.

Then, whoa. If you’re going to read Suspect by Robert Crais, brace yourself for a fast-paced and tense experience. This is the first Robert Crais novel which I’ve read, and I’m going to search for more. Hold on, though, if you decide to read it. Kind of like reading The Lovely Bones by Alice Seybold, this is not a light read. It’s gritty and intense. Prepare to pause for some deep breaths.

With those three completed, the sum of my week’s novel reading, I turn now to Blood Grove by Walter Mosley. I know what to expect from him and believe that my run of reading entertainment will continue.

Stay safe, y’all. Cheers

Saturday’s Theme Music

July 23 of 2022 turned out to be a Saturday. Sunrise took place while I still prowled dreamland at 5:55 AM. More likely to witness sunset at 8:39 PM. July is preparing to conduct a peaceful transfer of power to August.

Sunshine rules again, giving us some hot air. 90 F will be our high while it’s a pleasant and comfortable 19 C at the moment. Lovely to stand out in the sun with hot coffee, watching the feline masters grooming as cool hair bathes me.

World news scans gave a bleak assessment of life in 2022. Disasters, death, and killing fill the stories. Guess those are a significant part of life. I wanted something lighter in my mind. The damn Neurons didn’t comply. I just reading a novel called Fools and Mortals about William and Richard Shakespeare and the plays Romeo and Juliet and A Midsummer Night’s Dream. The primary story focused on Richard Shakespeare, a player in Shakespeare’s company, his love life and poverty, his relationship with his brother, stolen manuscripts, and politics. Perhaps the novel’s story still circulated around the neural pathways as The Neurons filled the morning mental music stream with “(Don’t Fear) The Reaper” from 1976 by Blue Oyster Cult. The song has lyrics which go, “Romeo and Juliet are together for eternity.” The way my neurons go about business, of course the song would need to be brought up after reading a book mentioning them, of course! It’s as natural an order as sunrise and sunset, a thought which cues The Neurons to begin “Sunrise, Sunset” from Fiddler on the Roof.

Let’s get out of here. Stay positive and test negative, masking as needed, etc. I’ve already procured and consumed some coffee, so here’s the music. Enjoy.

More cowbell. Peace out.

Cars & Book Dream

I was staying at an exotic luxury place in a high-end location in the center of some city. I knew these things in my dream. No reason for being there was ever given. Everything was very fancy, chrome, blue windows, steel, and muted white furniture, modern, and new, although never named. I’d been put up in the place and was newly arrived and just familiarizing myself with it. A ground-floor location, several parts of my huge place was open to the street, something that I didn’t find odd, but enjoyed.

Background done, the action began when I walked across the place and accidently kicked a can, sending it out into the traffic. Dusk was settling in and lights were just coming on. Exasperated, I resolved to retrieve the can because everything looked so clean and gorgeous. As I went out to get it, a car hit the can, sending it flying further down the road where another car coming from the opposite direction flattened it.

More irritated, I hastened to get the can. I could see a line of cars accelerating up the double lane toward the can. I would need to rush.

I didn’t make it. Forced back by the oncoming traffic, I then saw a stream of such flattened cans in the street under the cars. I was disgusted.

“Asshole,” someone shouted. I saw two men. Both were white, with mustaches and long brown hair. One was tall and the other was short. One of them had yelled. I thought they meant me.

Seeing me seeing them, they chuckled and said, “We weren’t calling you an asshole. We were going whoever threw their can out an asshole. Unless it was you who did it. Then we are calling you an asshole.”

“No,” I answered, “I didn’t throw a can.” I explained what’d been going on.

They noticed a small hardcover book I carried and began talking about it. An older book, the tome was about three racing drivers, but the novel was considered ‘literary’. The two men highly recommended it. I responded that I was a novelist and the book enticed me because of its literary reputation, but I’d also been a racing fan.

We were walking by then. I was looking for my place and couldn’t find it. They invited me to join them at a restaurant for a drink. I agreed and we went into a red-theme place — red carpet and bar, red leather seats, red lights, red walls and curtains, red neon. As we chatted, the tall one went off for our drinks and the short one said that he hoped I was serious about what I said about the book and that I wasn’t just going along with them.

I told him, no, and we started chatting about racing. I told him that the late sixties and early seventies had captured my deepest racing interest. I enjoyed the three-liter Formula 1 cars of that age, especially Lotus and the 72, but also the Tyrrells, the Indy cars dominated by the Offy and Ford engines, the sports-racing cars of LeMans like the Chaparral 2D, and the Can Am cars like the McLarens, the Lola T70, and the 2J. (Yes, I actually said all of this in the dream.) They remarked with smiles that it sounded like I really knew my cars. The tall one said, “You should meet my sister.”

We’d finished our drinks and I decided to go. The dream’s final sequences involved me retracing my steps, looking for where I was staying, and then finding it.

Dream end. It was all quite vivid and sharply remembered.

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