Is the title appropriate? Probably not, but it’s the end destination for my book so I’m going to use it. Not the “weyrd” or “wyrd” or any of the other fantasy spellings of the word used to indicate a place (always thought of it as a foggier version of Faerie to tell you the truth) but rather a stylistic destination. There are creatures and strange happenings and (hopefully) some scarier bits mixed in the the ordinary, the funny and the straight forward bits. But that is all yet to come, a work in progress, something to unfurl throughout these summer months (about 100,000 words by the end of August).
Now, for the more recent happenings:
Wrapping up the season. Finished the schedule last week and then spent a good part of the day fielding emailed alterations to said schedule (it’s always after it’s published when folks send you the email that says “I didn’t realize that you were posting the schedule, I’m unavailable for the month of June …”). All in all, it’s been difficult to transition into a writing schedule. I’m getting there though.
Meaghan came to see the show on Friday, so afterwards we got drinks and food with Kristy at Old Chicago. Then, on Saturday, we hung out when I was finished with shows (Chinese food, wine, silly movies). Sunday was another two show day and then Monday I had off. I got up early (6 am early) to pick Meaghan up in order to drop her at the airport. (I’m a really good friend …) She got on a plane and then I went home to do a few things and then take a late morning nap. I had plans for the day, but then I realized (after said nap) that it was Memorial Day and therefore places were closed. I was still pretty brain-dead from the weekend, so I spent most of the day in my chair watching movies that I’ve had stockpiled in my Netflix queue. For a day where I didn’t do anything, it was pretty full. Tuesday I did some work emails, got my ass out of the chair and out of the house. I got a sandwich and then went to B&N to do some writing. The work I was doing is beginning stuff again, but since I’ve tweaked story details in some later pages and have come up with a new directional thread for the story I decided I needed to start adding it in, in order to get through the rest of the story. So far, most of my writing is staying as is (a few tweaks here and there) but I’m sure that the next revision, once I’ve finished the book and am doing a full job on it will become more extensive. Had a chat with one of the baristas from the cafe and agreed to get together at some point. Then I packed my stuff up and went to the back of the store to see China Mieville(Embassytown, The City & the City, King Rat) speak.
His was one of the more engaging author appearances that I’ve been fortunate enough to see. It really helps that his books are fairly dense and complicated stories with rich and fully realized settings that open up and ask for discussion. It also helps that, while keeping a fantasy/ weird fiction base, he writes across genres. A very charming and intelligent writer that actually worked to precisely answer the audience’s questions, including the dreaded “Where do you get your ideas?” (I’m not sure that I could have dived into that question quite the way he did, slipping as I do into a glib response like “third drawer in my filing cabinet” or “this little shed in the woods”). One thing that he said that I made a point to write down (gently paraphrased) was an offshoot of his response to this question:
We are born full of ideas. If you go into a classroom full of six-year-olds and say “we’re going to write stories” and ask them to come up with a monster or a space ship or what can be viewed through that special window they won’t stop coming up with variations and ideas. If you go to a classroom full of sixteen-year-olds and say the same thing you’ll get a shrugging response filled with “I don’t knows”. Somewhere in that decade something else got in there and told them that having ideas was silly. A voice telling them to stop being silly. There was some sort of filter put up there. Writers just have a quieter filter to the voice that tells them to stop being silly.
It was a nice thought that came out of, what I typically think of as, a silly question. Glad she asked it.
I’ll catch up with the “what I’ve been watching”/ “what I’ve been reading” chunk a little later on. Next up I’m going to get drinks with my friend Liz (formally co-worker at the theatre and fellow student at Hamline). She’s spent the last year in Milwaukee with her boyfriend, going to grad school there. She’s back for a bit doing some summer teaching gig and we’re going to catch up.
More later …