Gwen didn't come today as she was doing some work and then I had to rush off to celebrate Arlo's 90th birthday with him. He and I went down to the waterfront and knocked back some rum. But before I went partying with Arlo I did work. Gwen and I will work together on Thursday.
I had my beat sheets up on a wall near my desk but still not close enough to refer to them the way I wanted. I went downstairs to SP's workshop. He cleaned it up on the long weekend - I was dazzled! I found a piece of plywood brought it up and fastened my sheets to it. What a difference! Now I can rest the plywood on a chair and work away.
I got through all of the first sheet - 8 chapters. I am adding/subtracting - and setting up the conflict. I'm seeing if it flags or goes to quickly but mainly right now I'm revising for plot, structure and clarity. I'm feeling good but then I'm still on the part that feels solid - I do think though that if I keep improving the structure and clarity of this part when I get to the rougher part in the last third of the middle section - I'll go 'aha' and it will fall into place.
I'm really paying attention to a quote Ursula K. Le Guin had in her book The Wave in the Mind. It is a quote from a letter Virgina Woolf wrote to Vita Sackville-West. In fact the title of Le Guin's book is taken from this quote:
As for the mot juste, you are quite wrong. Style is a very simple matter: it is all rhythm. Once you get that, you can't use the wrong words. But on the other hand here am I sitting after half the morning, crammed with ideas, and visions, and so on, and can't dislodge them, for lack of the right rhythm. Now this is very profound, what rhythm is, and goes far deeper than words. A sight, an emotion, creates this wave in the mind, long before it makes words to fit it: and in writing (such is my present belief) one has to recapture this, and set this working (which has nothing apparently to do with words) and the, as it breaks and tumbles in the mind, it makes words to fit it. But no doubt I shall think differently next year.
I believe I understand what Woolfe means by this and why it is so important to Le Guin. I have it over my desk to remind me to pay attention to that mysterious rhythm.
Is there a quote you keep handy? Or do you have something you'd like to say about the meaning of this rhythm?