Tuesday, August 8, 2006
Cooler and pleasant
Day 30 of Home Om. Almost there!
M.E. Ellis named Ink “Blog of the Week” last Friday. Thank you so much! I’m honored.
I bought a handful of stories from this link:
I don’t know the guy, but he’s a writer in trouble, and we should all do what we can to help each other. Friends whose judgment I respect know him and are involved, and that’s enough for me. There have been plenty of times when I didn’t have even $2 to throw his way. Today I can toss a few bucks in his direction (I wish it was more), and I’m sticking to my belief that it’s important to buy the work of living authors while they’re still alive so they can enjoy the royalties.
If you get a chance, pay a visit and make your own decision.
Two of my writer friends and I are all having piano longings! I don’t play, but I always wanted to. I played clarinet in high school, and started on cello, but they needed viola players, so they switched me over. Haven’t touched any of the instruments since high school, although my clarinet is still in storage. I always wanted to learn piano, but we never lived anywhere where we could have one.
I want to do what Clea does in “The Purchase” and find one in the ads in the Pennsylvania penny saver papers, go out there, and haul it home! Quite often, in Bucks and Berks county, people want to get rid of old pianos – if you bring a truck, they hand it to you. And then you have to restore it and get it tuned and all that. But still – it’s a piano!
Twenty-four people have died so far in the latest heat wave. 24. And you know what Con Ed has offered? For ten days with no electricity? $3.00 compensation. Three dollars. Thirty cents per day. Some of the small business owners were wiped out. And why? Even though the CEO whines they don’t know what caused it, looking at those cables makes it very obvious: the executives were lining their pockets instead of maintaining the system and making necessary upgrades.
I hope the class action lawsuit triumphs. At the very least, Con Ed should replace everything in people’s refrigerators that spoiled. Early on, there was word they’d reimburse up to $750.00. Now, it’s down to $3.
Cut the salaries by 50% of the suits who do nothing but sit in offices on their fat asses playing video games and dissing women. Put it into the system, give it to the men and women who are actually out on the street doing the work, reimburse the customers, and don’t send out any bills for a month. Give everyone a month free.
The suits can earn their salaries back, depending upon how efficient they are in the coming month.
People died. It is the company’s responsibility to fix the problem, and the city’s responsibility to ride the company and make sure it never happens again.
Wrote Wednesday’s Dog Blog. Finished my draft of the next Lit Athlete column and sent it to my editor, along with sidebars. It may need to be cutting, but, at this point, I can’t see how to do it; hence, I rely on my editor.
Can’t get into ANY of the books waiting around here to be read – and there are plenty! But I feel too guilty to simply go out and buy more.
How much are you guys betting I’ll get over THAT part of it?
Did four loads of laundry in and around the writing. For those of you who have houses, I realize that is no big deal. But I have to haul it up and down three flights of stairs (no elevator in this building) and then on down into the basement. Granted, I am grateful to have a laundry room in the building. I am even more grateful I don’t have to wash the clothes with a bucket and a board. So I’ll shut up now.
My desk held three piles so high I could no longer see the computer monitor. I tackled two piles and triumphed. The pile to the right will take a day unto itself. But it feels better to have reclaimed at least a portion of my desk.
Worked on the outline for Life Renovations. Worked on the outline for Triskele (which will get a title change eventually; too many titles have that word in them, even though it’s important to the theme).
Thanks to the love and support of my cyber-compatriots, I started the outline for the satire. The idea is quite simple, as is the theme. However, making it work properly will be the challenge. Also, it has to be light and funny, not heavy and funny. It can slice as deeply into what I believe are some of the current social problems as I want – but I must use a scalpel, not a battle axe. Standing on a soap box screaming never gets as much attention as making someone laugh and then cutting them with it: “ha ha – Ow!”
The early draft will, no doubt, carry many rants, which will get edited down and turned into cleverer bits. And the humor has to come from character, or it just won’t be funny. It’s not like those political idiots aren’t stupifyingly funny – or would be, if their results weren’t so horrifying.
War is like any other business – if you want to stop it, you cut off the profit. The idealists and true believers are used for cannon fodder, and the ones at the top keep chuckling and cashing the checks.
It will be something that needs tight outlining, and strong character development early on. Because the actual writing won’t be easy.
My protagonist’s name is Lyria – in homage to Shakespeare’s kingdom of Illyria in Twelfth Night.
Another problem will be keeping the main characters down to a workable number. I have a large pool from which to draw. I’ll have to jot down all the possibilities, and then do some research to find those that will work the best for satirical purposes. Some were well-versed in satire and will be happy to jump in. Some won’t see the point.
And, do I stick to one part of history, or do I travel? Can I mix and match? If I pick two historical contexts to contrast with modern, am I doing a disservice to other movements?
And then . ..a breakthrough:
Who says that the social satire has to take place on this world using historical figures from this history? It’s one thing to toss of historical and/or pop culture references; it’s quite another to toss them off and have them be for a culture no one’s ever yet experienced, yet ground it in enough that’s recognizable to it works.
That would also help me cut characters – I could combine traits of historical figures in which I’m interested.
Many, many questions to ponder.
Gives me something to do during the day call.
I finally settled on something to re-read: Tim Page’s biography of Dawn Powell. You haven’t read Dawn Powell’s novels? A celebrated author who is buried in the potter’s field on Hart Island? Go to your bookstore or click onto an online ordering service and get her novels right now! She’s completely unique and extraordinary.