Saturday, November 13, 2010

I Did It!

First of all, check this out. Original BD photography from when I was in my black and white phase because I'd inadvertently loaded a roll of black and white film into the camera when we went on a camping trip. But seeing that early morning mist rising off Horseshoe Lake, contrasting with the black of the trees on the shore, makes me appreciate that perhaps I ought to try black and white photography more often. Thank heaven that's possible with digital filtering in Photoshop these days.

But that's not the I Did It! I'm bragging about here. What I'm bragging about is that I caved in today and finally started editing that famous unpublished novel of mine.

Writers will understand this: I had to let some time pass in order to give myself enough distance from the writing that I would be more open to seeing its flaws and failures. It's obvious, looking at even this cursory look-through that I started tonight, that there are plenty of flaws and failures to find. But that's good news -- that means I have waited long enough for the romance of the words and the story to fall away.

I'm seeing lots of weird little tics in my writing. For instance, for some reason I almost always start novels out in the past tense and then migrate to the present tense as I go along. Granted, this is the first novel I've completed so I can see the pattern, but as I edit I recognize the pattern in even the unfinished stuff I've got.

Also, I experiment oddly with first person. That's working for this novel, but for some reason in the second part of the book I switched the point of view from two characters to two new characters, and it doesn't work at all. I started heavily editing that section until the hippo of memory lumbered out of the deep to remind me what I'd done in that section. So it's going to take a lot of re-working before it's up to snuff. But that's okay. It's me finding this stuff out. It's me doing the polishing before I send this out on spec for people to maybe want to publish. I'm making it better.

And then there's that whole time thing. I compress some things too much, drag out other stuff way too long. It's an endless cycle of tinkering, and I'm okay with that. It's keeping me in line with my goal to have this edited by Christmas. Then I farm it out. But I am on the way, and that pleases me.

Want to read the drivel I've written? Just click on the "Considering How to Run" link just below the blog banner on the left, and you'll be reading.

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