Skip to main content

Backstory: Discovering My Novel All Over Again


Part of my journey during these five weeks in Evergreen, Colorado, has been to spend time working on the revisions to my second novel. I am near the half-way point, and estimate that there are at least thirty-three more chapters to revise. My goal is to complete fifteen chapters while I'm here. To accomplish that feat requires that I work on the chapters every day, which is one reason why chapter posts out number posts containing my 'thoughts of the day'.

What has been the most interesting part of this process is that I truly don't know where it's going. How is that possible? Well, I began writing this novel over six years ago, and while I completed about two-thirds of the book, I did so in a haphazard way. As the chapters alternate between Moscow and Lake Tahoe, I sometimes worked chronologically and sometimes jumped forward working solely on the Moscow chapters while leaving the Lake Tahoe chapters blank, only bookmarked by chapter headings. Then I quit writing five years ago, and put the novel and the rest of my work away and never looked at it again.

My approach to the revisions has been to separate out each chapter into a separate word document that I work on one by one, now working in a strictly chronological order. However, because I have not looked at the book in so many years each time I open a new chapter it's a revelation. On the one hand, I am like the reader seeing the work for the first time, wondering what is going to happen next. On the other hand, because I am also the author, reading these pages takes me back in time to where I was when I wrote them. And then, because it is a revision, my goal is to take what is there and try to improve it. Needless to say, it has been quite an adventure.

The most challenging part is yet to come: somewhere down the road, I am going to meet one of those chapters that contain the heading followed by a blank page. That is where the real fun will begin....and just for the record, even I don't know 'who done it' yet, from what I remember, I never figured that part out...although oddly, the last page is already written!
Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Comments

Keetha said…
This is very exciting. Keep us apprised!
Elizabeth said…
I've read quite a few of the chapters and now feel the need to go back to the beginning and start from there. I am so very impressed with your work. I love the fact that the last page is written...you know where you are going, just not necessarily what will happen along the way!
Blessings & big news at my place!Pax, E

Popular posts from this blog

Dinner with Julia

What do Ina Garten and Martha Stewart have in common? Both women describe cooking through Julia Child’s Mastering the Art of French Cooking when they were young as foundation to learning to cook.
Julia Child is an inspiration to most home cooks of a certain age. I found her so inspiring that at one time, I had all of her cookbooks, including a first edition of Mastering the Art of French Cooking, and had read almost every biography written about her, My Life in France, being my favorite. And yet! I confess that until this week, my cooking adventures in Mastering were limited to her omelet recipe, her iconic recipes for onion soup and Beef Bourguignon.
When the Food52 Cookbook Club on Facebook chose Mastering as its cookbook for the month, I jumped at the chance to finally use Julia’s first cookbook for its intended purpose.
I decided to start with something easy, a poached egg. I purchased the best organic eggs I could afford, read the recipe several times, and began. After I’d tur…

Collard Greens with White Beans - A Vegetarian Take on a Classic

Could a vegetarian version of collard greens ever compete with the traditional goodness of collard greens cooked with a smoked ham hock?

I was skeptical until I made this recipe. It is every bit as delicious. Taking the place of the ham hock is the rind of parmesan or other hard cheese. I keep a small plastic bag of cheese rinds in the freezer, they are the perfect flavor enhancer of stocks and soups, and now collard greens.

Similar recipes call for dried beans, but sine I live 10,400 feet above sea level, dried beans are always a challenge unless I'm using a pressure cooker. For this recipe, I opted for canned beans and am just as happy as can be.

This recipe is quick, easy, delicious, and so rich and satisfying a bowlful with a slice of garlicky olive oil toasted bread makes the perfect week night dinner. It is also a satisfying side dish.

Let's get cooking!

Ingredients:
1 bunch of collard greens, touch center stems removes, leaves torn into large pieces
1 14 oz can of Nort…

Open to the Spirit - Book Review

Open to the Sprit is like reading a letter from a friend. McKnight writes a very accessible introduction to the Holy Spirit and its role in our spiritual life. McKnight uses several stories from his life and others to share how the Holy Spirit consoles and deepens our daily spiritual walk. A terrific book for those seeking an introduction to a relationship with the Holy Spirit.