Keeping myself occupied
Princess Poltergeist is now with my absolutely brilliant critique partner for review, and I’m in that panicky stage where I’m convinced that she’s going to send me a gently worded email to the effect of, “We need to talk,” which is code for “This is hopeless. You’re screwed.”
So, in an effort to distract myself, I’m blogging (obviously) and looking for interesting things to keep me occupied until I hear back from her.
First, I picked up Rachel Vincent’s book, SHIFT, last night on my way home. I’m so eager to read this next installment of her werecat series. (Please note: While Rachel does write Young Adult, this is series is NOT.)
Second, another DVD of Fringe Season One arrived yesterday as my Netflix–yea! It’s not the X-Files, which I loved, but I have always liked Joshua Jackson (Yes, even back in his Dawson’s Creek days) and the combination of humor and strange science is right up my alley. It’s kind of a relief, actually, not to have the Mulder-trying-to-find-his-sister type of plotline hanging over the show. Makes it possible to enjoy each episode on its own merits.
Third, I think I’m going to start taking notes for another book. Writing is one of those self-soothing things for me. So when I’m stressed about one book, it helps sometimes to focus on another.
I also found a fabulous blog entry about writing and being a writer by Robin Wasserman (author of the awesome book SKINNED) on Justine Larbalestier (author of the equally-awesome-but-in-a-totally-different-way LIAR)’s site. Here’s a quote:
“Obviously there’s no absolute right or wrong way to be a writer any more than there’s a right or wrong way to be a working mother—there are about a million ways, all equally prone to setback and failure and second guessing.
And writers, at least the ones I’ve met, are extremely good at second-guessing. Not to mention self-abasement and paranoia. (As far as I can tell, the only writer not afflicted by this is James Patterson, who seems to have developed some kind of miraculous immunity.) They harbor the fear that they’re failures, that they’re frauds, that they’re lazy, that they’re hacks, that it’s just a matter of time before that bottom drops out or that whatever they’ve achieved, it isn’t enough.
This is partly because we’re crazy.”
I LOVE that.
I follow screenwriter John August’s blog as well because I use screenwriting techniques in writing my books. Plus, I like the way he thinks about things.
Anyway, he posted this week about the advantages and necessity of being able to simulate powerful emotion on the page even when you’re not feeling it personally, at that moment. It was fascinating, and I found myself nodding in agreement with much of what he said. That distant observer part of you does kick in, even in the most trying of situations, to record stuff for later. I call it the, “I might be able to use this somehow” feeling, which is kind of creepy but part of being a writer, I think. We try to observe everything, including our own emotional reactions, to help us understand and relate to something else. It’s part of how we function.
Also, random note, speaking of emotion, my sister pointed me toward Sia’s song “Breathe Me,” which I just love, and if Princess Poltergeist has the same ending that it does now, that is THE song for that scene. Makes me cry every darn time.