The reasons for this blog: 1. To provide basic author information for students, teachers, librarians, etc. (Please see sidebar) 2. I think out loud a lot as I work through writing projects, and I'm trying to dump most of those thoughts here rather than on my friends.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Finally finished a first-pass grounding of that one plotty sequence, then moved back to where I left off in the ms, trying to focus and tighten this little bit of the middle (40 pages, maybe?) before plotty stuff kicks in. It's tough. The hooks that are there are decent, but they're not of the life-threatening variety that's in some of the plotty chapters. I keep fretting about this, that "decent" may not be enough, next to "life-threatening."

So I guess the way to describe what I've been doing, amidst my fretting and picking at stuff, is to say that I've been honing and slanting my scenes to try to give "decent" the most power I possibly can.

In related news, I have finally ordered a copy of Story: Substance, Structure, Style, and the Principles of Screenwriting (Robert McKee), and a fellow writer and I will be attempting to read it at the same time, so we can discuss its practical applications to our own mss re. tension and pacing. I say "attempting" because I just heard that it's a thick book (I never checked the number of pages, d'oh!), and I zone out quickly on craft-speak; my brain just doesn't recognize or retain it. Craft-speak has to have direct meaning to a writing problem I'm struggling with, or it's like I'm reading Chinese or Sanskrit. So stay tuned.

Anyway, in the same order I also finally rewarded myself with a book that's been on my list for a long time, Brittany and the Angevins: Province and Empire 1158-1203, by Judith Everard, and it's going to be hard to force myself to stay with pages and pages of theoretical writing advice when I could be reading a case for why everybody is so f*cking wrong about Henry II's fourth son being a sly, amoral lowlife. But I will try. And who knows, maybe Story's not really that long--maybe it's even a page-turner of a craft book.

(Here's to writer friends who read craft books and tell you the parts that are pertinent to your ms! May the writing gods bless them with many days in the Zone and also lots of cash.)