Monday, June 1, 2015

Birthing a book

I managed to haul my butt out of bed by 5:12 AM. I woke at 5 (no - no alarm - I do it with me own head) but set my mental snooze alarm for another dozen sweet minutes. Then I went to my desk and started up my program. Here's one of the more irritating parts of my life right now - I have a new operating system. My fella cleaned up my computer and I had to get rid of Word - it was just too ancient. He put in open office for me and I hate it. Is that too strong a word? No it isn't but thanks for asking. All the actions that have been a part of my writing life are suddenly ever so slightly changed. Where's the line spacing tool? How do I turn off that ridiculous word completion nonsense? And so on. I'm not mad at my guy - I had to have it changed - but I do wish he'd be sympathetic to how I feel. I said to him 'What if I went into your workshop and took your most used tool and replaced it with something that is supposed to be way better but that you didn't get - how would you feel? And oh by the way, you have a really big project to finish?'  He just looks at me and says that there is nothing to be done and lots of people use open office and love it.

That means I'm sitting in the corner at my desk muttering curses under my breath. Just saying.

But - I did get me arse on the seat and I did do my new chapter started. Over a thousand words and I know where it's going and I can't believe I've worked for three years (today!) on Bright Angel and not known I needed this chapter. And it will be the first one. Thank you dear mentor - you are already worth your weight in gold for suggesting this.

And yes it has been three years to the day that I started Bright Angel. At the beginning it was called something else - for a moment it was The Barrens - but that didn't last. Then I called it Good Enough -  I think and just before it became Bright Angel it was called Crossing Bright Angel. About thirty thousand words in, when my protagonist ended up travelling from Nova Scotia to the Grand Canyon I found out about an old trail called Bright Angel and that became the name. I spent some time last night reading my old blog posts from three years ago. I can't believe I started a book and wrote 70 thousand words in two months while our house was for sale and I was also writing a poem a day for a project I called 60 poems in 60 days in my 60th year or some such twaddle! I was absolutely on writing fire.

Three years will seem a lot to some of you I know but I think I will be done with this final revision the end of this month and I feel like this has been a short haul. It's not like I haven't done other things - lots of other writing - plays, poems, revising other manuscripts; moving to Labrador, working now at a very compelling job - continuing my therapy practice and so on.

Nope - I'm happy with a three year pregnancy!

And I'm super happy to be taking part in another BuNoWriMo under the tutelage of the tartlette. Go to her site and see how to join up if you like. It is a wonderful group to work with.

2 comments:

S.P. Bowers said...

I hate open office, too. And no, my hubby didn't understand it either. Sorry, hope things get better soon.

Margot Kinberg said...

Jan - I really don't like Open Office at all! Sorry you're having to deal with it. As to your book, I don't think 3 years is an overly long time at all to see your book to its conclusions. I can't wait 'till we can all read what you've created.