Which is to say that I've had a hard time deciding on a subject for this month's blog. The natural tendency would be to go with a thanksgiving theme, but I don’t want to be trite. There is so much that I am grateful for, and my list is probably a lot like yours. So, I’ll just I’ll mention a few things about writing that I am thankful for.
Mark Twain is alleged to have said that the the secret of getting ahead is getting started; and that to succeed in life you need two things: ignorance and confidence; he also mentioned that Teddy Roosevelt was bat-whack crazy.
I am thankful that I'm back in the saddle, writing again. At last, I have found some momentum and gotten started on Storms of Tarshish, the sequel to Uncle Arctica. I have about 10,000 words on paper. I am thankful that I was ignorant of what a long-haul-proposition getting a writing career started would be. That bliss has left me with the confidence that I, like Teddy Roosevelt, will succeed in spite of my mental derangements.
I am thankful for the joys of the creative process. Especially for those characters who come out of the blue and surprise me. There is a certain one in Uncle Arctica whom I had not foreseen and who, after she appeared, drove the rest of the story--with almost four hundred pages to go! I would have been lost without her. And already, in Storms of Tarshish, I have a passel of new characters filling in the gaps, and one who is really jacking up Blake and Mia's Caribbean vacation--and we're just getting the story started!
It makes me glad to have finally gathered enough information on their current setting that I can go there in my head. The weather in Indy isn’t getting me down right now because in my mind I’m on Isla de Vieques, getting into trouble with my characters. While many of the big scenes in Uncle Arctica were written in the first year and had to wait for me to catch up to them over the next five. Storms of Tarshish is all mapped out in synoptic form. I have only to put meat on its skeleton - and that's the delicious part!
I'm thankful for the first assignment given in my TV-351 video editing class, all those years ago. Tom Walter's project blew us away and from it I learned to keep upping the stakes, looping the loops, pulling out all of the stops, then installing more stops and pulling them out, too. That’s what got me to the end of Uncle Arctica, and will leave you breathless at the end of Storms of Tarshish. How on earth will I write Snowmen of the Serengeti?
I'm also thankful for all of you who have enjoyed Uncle Arctica and my blogs, and have encouraged, if not demanded that I keep writing. I pegged close to 900 RSS feeds on my blogs in November and I am deeply gratified--and humbled--that so many of you have appreciated my musings.
I am glad to offer you Uncle Arctica. It was a blast to write it, and it’s even more fun to read. Give it a try. You’ll be thankful you did.