Sunday, August 12, 2012

Back from the brink of death!

Ugh.  Martian Death Flu is no fun.

The first & second of August, I thought I was just having my seasonal allergy attack rather later than normal. But then I was full-on sick, and even had to take a couple days off of work.  I'm also reading The Stand, so I couldn't shake the irrational thought that Captain Trips was coming for me.  The next few days I was possibly too sick to work, but definitely too poor to not work, so I toughed it out.  I seemed to get better like three days ago, but then had mad allergy symptoms once again that came to a peak last night.

And now I'm perfectly fine!

So I guess I'm officially caught up on my quota of illness for the last two years.  I was missing some, you see.  This would be a perfect time to dust off that bit I've been saving up on the immune system... but I don't feel like writing about the immune system.  In fact, all I wanna do now is write Tabula Rasa.  Somewhere along the line, the plans for Tabula Rasa got mixed up with my plans to re-write Rendezvous into Breath to Breath, so I think I'll just go with it because it seems like a good idea (mainly because it takes elements from a story I like and transposes them from a setting I no longer like [horror] into a better one [adventure]).  It's also been marinating for over a year, which is a good indication that it's a worthwhile idea and not going anywhere.

In all honesty, I never really tried to set it down, it just kinda slipped through my fingers and fell to the wayside.  But I have been working through the major issues I had with it - mainly how to get from one plot point to another, since it was conceived (like all my stories) as a flotilla of vignettes and not a single coherent narrative - and I think it's in a state where I can drop all of Chekov's Guns without needing to backtrack preposterously through a bunch of established story.  I've also been reading apocalyptic fiction (I mentioned Lucifer's Hammer and The Stand) to give me some grounding in the genre and see what else is out there.  Mainly what I've noticed is that authors can get away with quite a bit of stereotyping as long as there's sufficient characterization to balance it out, and that Stephen King's editor needs a finer-toothed comb.  I mean, I can't tell Stephen King what to do, but when I read something like, "He shivered a little, and the wind danced a spiral of fire out of the fire and up toward the black starshot sky" (p. 439 in my edition), I can't help but think, "You don't need the word 'fire' twice in such close proximity.  Use 'flame' the first time, or 'blaze' the second, or fucking anything else."

Anyway, that's that.  I've got some stuff written up already, just not the first part, so I'm gonna finish that.  But I open tomorrow, so I need to get to bed at a reasonable hour, and I doubt I'll get through it all tonight.  So that's tomorrow, and then I've got the next part written already, and then it's just a matter of putting the vignettes in place and stitching them together with something approaching skill and aplomb (I'd sure like to write it all in order, but even so, I'll probably end up with Un-Deleted Scenes like in The Quantum Mechanic).  Wish me luck!

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