Breaking Out the Good Stuff

Stuff is going down today. I can tell because A) I am the one who planned said stuff, and B) I broke out the fancy pen. Full disclosure, said fancy pen was broken out for photographic purposes, as a quick test proved that it’s going to require cleaning and re-inking before I can actually use it. The actual pens used in today’s work will probably be one of my workhorse pens, possibly erasable because I know me, and perfectionism is the big boss to defeat before I can get into reconnecting with the meat of Her Last First Kiss, which is my assignment for the day.

Tomorrow morning, N and I will have our weekly breakfast and go over our homework, aka the pages that will enable us to kick each others’ posteriors into gear on our chosen projects. For double-digit years, I was part of a weekly accountability/critique group, that included my contemporary cohort, Melva Michaelian, and I was the only person who had something to read, every single week. There were more times than I’d care to admit, that my pages for that week were written in a white-hot burst, down to minutes before my ride came to ferry me there. There were times when I wrote pages that didn’t have anything to do with a current project, but they were pages, goshdangit, and that was what mattered.

When I moved from CT, to NY, obviously, that was the end of that. I missed it, and still do. I haven’t found a local group yet, though I’ve tried a couple, and I do have local writer friends, whom I meet with individually. I miss the group dynamic, though, so still working on that one.

Writing is often a solitary pursuit. I am an extrovert, meaning that I gain my energy from being around other people, and spend my energy when alone. Communing with other writers is a great way for me to refill that energy reserve. The internet is a great source for that. I will never, ever turn down a chance to have tea and writerly talk, face to face, with a local writer buddy, and have been known to travel, to see writer friends who are farther away than public transportation can connect.

That better have pages thing, though, I’ve been missing that. Last week, when N and I had our first regular breakfast after we both went to separate RWA events, we admitted we could both use some accountability. Hence the homework. Hence the excited skip of my pulse as I write this, glancing over the top of my monitor, at the real life version of today’s picture, only a few feet away. A new cup of tea, a pen in my hand, and it will be time, once again, to dive headfirst into Georgian England, and Bern and Ruby, and all the reasons they shouldn’t and can’t be together, which are nothing compared to the fact that they must. Are they going to admit that, though? Not without a great deal of difficulty, and that, for me, is where the fun lies.

Since I’ve already written the first draft, I know how things are going to turn out. This is for going deeper, for making the book more itself. Making Bern Bern-ier, Ruby more Ruby-licious. This is going to mean finally breaking down and setting up the printer, because I need reference pictures, and family trees, and cheat sheets, and all of that good stuff. This means ripping apart the binder I made over a year ago, that I set up in a specific arrangement, then never used.

Obviously, that arrangement didn”t work. Difference between theory and practice, and all that. This is time to fly into the mist, albeit with a general idea of what I’m doing, and the boundaries of the previous draft and a half, to bump me back when I drift too far afield. I’m excited (if you haven’t picked up on that by now) and am about half super pumped to get back to this story (a huge thank you to those writer friends who have needled me about this, because it super duper helps) and half running around in circles, arms flailing, but at least they are controlled circles.

My table/desk is not going to look this neat by the end of the day, when it’s time to clear away the writing stuff and set up for dinner with the fam.  I am okay with that. Probably, at some point, but probably not today, I will do battle with the fountain pens that were last packed when I had a different address, and bring them  back into everyday use. That’s another topic, though, for another day.

For right now, it’s time to brew some tea, pick out pens, and make a cover page for the second half of Big Daddy Precious, then start digging.

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