Sunday, November 9, 2008

What is the sound of one head desking?

There comes a time in writing prose--and other written media, but it's much more acute and noticeable with prose--when one's gone over the same material so many times in an effort to improve it that one no longer knows if it's any good at all (but, when the one in question is me, one suspects it's complete garbage.) At the moment, I blame The 10% Solution, Ken Rand's incredibly useful but mind-numbingly repetitive editing system, detailed in his book of the same name, for this. Rand says going over the same sentences over and over is a Good Thing, and my personal experience says he's right. But it's damn hard to believe it when you're trawling through the same three thousand words for the tenth or more time.

But! The novel outline is done, and polished to the best of my meager abilities. And, more importantly, it's off to the Book Editor, who will hopefully like it, or at least confirm my suspicion that it's complete garbage. If the latter, I shall cry and then get back to work. If the former, however, the outline, along with sample chapters and the editor's recommendation, will go upstairs to the office of whoever's responsible for deciding which projects the Book Editor's employer decides to pick up.

I'd be nervous about that if I was conscious, but if The Solution wasn't bad enough, winter has arrived. Oh, there's no snow, yet. But darkness is falling in the middle of the afternoon, the air is as cold and bitter as John McCain's campaign staff, and the daytime sky is an oppressive grey ceiling hovering just out of reach. The pills prescribed by the neurologist are not doing their job, or at least not doing it well enough, as today's throbbing headache is going about its business with no regard to the thrice-daily stomach-disintegrating anti-inflammatory I've been taking. I'm not sure if the overwhelming desire to sleep for the next six months or so is the result of the shortening day, changing weather, the new medication, or just common sense telling me it would be Better not to be awake for the winter. Or a combination of all four.

I'm told the Hollywood Producer (I) liked my outline for his movie idea inspired very, very loosely by one of my comics. That said, he of course has "some notes". Why I should need to have a pre-phone meeting phone meeting with my manager prior to having a phone meeting with HPI, I don't know, but the Manager has declared it so, and so it shall be, sometime this week.

While I await those phone meetings, notes and/or a reaction from The Book Editor, I plan to work on an outline for STEEP CURVE, a comic miniseries, in the probably vain hope that someone will someday express some interest in my writing one again. It could happen. An editor contact I thought was dead recently resurfaced wanting to know whether we'd talked several months ago as planned (we hadn't) and suggesting we get together on the phone to discuss a few ideas I'd sent his way. Of course, he suggested this while I was in Calgary and we haven't managed to get together yet, but hope springs eternal. Or, if not eternal, it at least springs for a long time.

Don't ask about the bathroom. I'm not.

A

1 comment:

EFF said...

A novel, eh? Iiiiiiinteresting

Good luck with all the phone talking and whatnot