Friday, June 25, 2004
Hot and humid; storms
One of my favorite things in life is grocery shopping. I love all the creative possibilities of wandering up and down the aisles, planning meals. I find it very relaxing.
And, of course, it’s necessary. It was especially necessary because the cupboards are growing bare, and I won’t be home much over the next month.
I agreed to be in full-time over the month of July on the show. Although it means I will live in a state of perpetual exhaustion, for the next five weeks and have to be ruthless to the extreme with my time, it’s the best way I can help a sick colleague, and it also will tide me through financially until the fall writing money comes in.
I just have to make sure I keep a positive attitude, work, take care of myself . . .and don’t get caught up in other people’s drama.
Show was fine last night. One of the leads completely split his pants during a swashbuckling scene, and everyone on stage tried to survive the scene until they could race off and howl with laughter. Live theatre – nothing like it on earth!
The audience was lively and lovely, clapping and cheering for everything. I have a feeling we’re at the point of getting repeat theatre goers – people who truly love the show and keep coming back, play the CD at home all the time, singing along. It’s nice. The show is worth it.
Finished the Dawn Powell biography. I want to start the Selected Letters, but Paul Collins’s Hay-on-Wye book called so loudly I had to start it first. It’s funny and delightful, and makes a good train read.
Started the Halloween story. My sense is that it will run around 3000 words. I hope that’s not too much – I can’t remember what the word count should be. Although I prefer to write the first draft of a short story in one sitting, I can’t do it that time. So I’m working on it scene-by-scene, writing each scene as en entity unto itself. In the revision process, I will smooth out the bridges between the scenes so that it’s all of a piece.
A friend is moving into a new apartment next week, and I want to put together a little house blessing box for her.
Rewrote chapters 69, 70, 71 and 72 of The Widow’s Chamber and sent them out. Chapter 71 is one of the best, funniest things I’ve ever written. The original intent was to add tension into the scene where Nora and Daisy rescue Alva Benning, the woman jailed for murdering her abusive husband. I decided to add a couple of drunks in the next cell to ratchet up the stakes and the tension. They were originally envisioned as disposable characters.
Well, Cletus and Elwood had other ideas, and they turned out to be two of the funniest characters ever to grace one of my pieces. It gives Nora a chance to show her intelligence in dealing with them, and the entire chapter is almost an homage to Terry Pratchett, although I’m nowhere near as clever as he is.
Cletus and Elwood will be back. They’re too endearing to lose.
Shows what happens when you let the characters lead and be their own people, instead of trying to force them into the outline.
I’m almost caught up to where I need to be by the end of this week with The Widow’s Chamber and now have to think ahead to next week. I’m still behind on Tapestry and Angel Hunt.
I’m frustrated because I can’t find the books I need for the steam boat section. I may have to search Amazon.com and have them shipped overnight.
The BTP is pressuring me to be written. It feels like an abscess ready to pop. If I can just hold it off until Sunday night, I’ll pull an all-nighter Sunday into Monday to get down the first draft.
Did some business (or “busy-ness”) catch up. Still need to get info to Luna Jensen so that press release can go out. Maybe I can write it on the train and get it out in the morning.
I have ideas for some trips I want to take over the next few years, but not sure how much planning I want to do. It’s been far too long since I was in Paris; I’d like to do a project in Finland; I miss Scotland terribly; I want to do my DC/Boston trip; Prince Edward Island is calling me. And, I’m wondering if it would behoove me to shut myself away in a writers’ colony for 2-3 weeks in order to work on some of the plays and the hockey books.
Doing 8 shows/week, I’m not getting enough solitude so that I can really hear what’s going on inside and make informed decisions. There’s too much noise everywhere.
Must try to get some more work done on the Halloween story, shower, eat, and get to the theatre.