Tuesday, November 16, 2004
Cloudy and cold
NaNoWriMo Daily Cheer: You’ve had the time to reflect on your progress; now’s the time to pick up your pen and push on.
My writers’ group is helping me come up with intense Spanish insults for the fight between Anne and Maria. There is some documentation of the fight in history. I haven’t been able to find that much, so most of the actual episode will come from imagination. Both women were brutal in their own way – Anne stabbed a maid back in Charleston as a teenager, right before she ran away with James Bonney. Maria is reputed to have beheaded a child who accidentally got the hem of her dress dirty. In spite of the fact that both women were not exactly who you’d want to have over with your great-grandmother’s best china, those who wrote the histories definitely favor Anne. Maria seems to be have truly been despised, where Anne could inspire loyalty in people.
And Childley Bayard? Other than having money, there doesn’t seem to be much to recommend him. I have a pretty low opinion of anyone that women fight over anyway – the guy usually isn’t worth it, and all it does is feed his ego. If he was worth it, he would find a way around the violence. I realize that, in that day and age, catching a rich man meant a decent livelihood, which puts the fight into a different context than it would be today – although there are still plenty of women who hunt men so they don’t have to work. I went to college with plenty of women who were only there for their “MRS” degree and admitted it.
When I was on the road with Flower Drum Song in Houston this January, I was in the ladies’ room of an elegant restaurant one night. A woman in there told her friend that the most important thing she could teach her daughter was to give good head so that the girl would never have to worry about getting a job.
Things haven’t changed much over the centuries and some parents still prostitute their children, or teach them to prostitute themselves, calling it marriage.
I find that an insult to all the marriages that are built on love, respect, and a desire to build a good life for the parties involved and their children.
Managed to catch up on fan mail last night and this morning, which is a relief. Goodness, the words look so pretentious on the page! It’s not like I’m famous or anything, and I intend to keep it that way. But I get some pretty interesting mail from people who read my work, and I believe most of them deserve the courtesy of a response. Sometimes it takes me awhile, but eventually, I get there. If they can take the time to read my work, think about it and respond, I can take the time to acknowledge that I read the response and that I’m grateful for their interest.
I’ve been in the habit, for several years now, of dropping writers a quick line when I enjoy something he or she wrote. I’m expanding it now to also let the editor and/or publisher know. It’s important that the places which hire writers know the work is read and appreciated, so the writers can continue working.
Yes, it takes time, and no one damn better whine at me about time. I am well aware of the dearth of time and the breadth of our responsibilities.
But it is a priority to me and I choose to spend a few minutes supporting my fellow writers. I might not be able to do much, but the least I can do is let them and the people who hire them know that someone out there responds to the work.
I printed off the Montauk photos yesterday. The moonrise series came out better than I expected. I was concerned because I only had the digital with me and not a camera like my dad’s 1952 Leica (my favorite) where I can really play with f-stops, etc. The digital goes with me on research trips, to snap many photos that I can put up around me when I write. The film cameras are when I want to play with light, texture, and illusion. But the digital (Canon, OF COURSE), did a beautiful job. There’s also a great shot of a beach road disappearing into the twilight with the sun setting on the far end – mysterious and quiet and both inviting and ominous. I’m going to use it for something, although I don’t yet know what.
I used to do a lot of photography and I miss it.
I’ve fallen behind on marketing this week. I need to carve out some time for it later in the week, or I will be very, very, very sorry come the first of the year.
Whatever I dreamed last night wore me out and I woke up exhausted, but not remembering much, except a feeling of being trapped. Now, that’s a directly symbolic dream connected to not wanting to go into the theatre this week. And I just have to get over it and maintain a positive attitude.
However, before that, I want to cough up a few episodes of Charlotte. This is her week, after all.