Enjoy the Silence

Today was a day spent working on the book. Unfortunately when I sent off my sample first ten pages the other day, I realized all too late that there were a glaring number of mistakes. The prose could have been a lot cleaner than it was. So, I started a third draft on the first few chapters and made a lot of progress with that. Tomorrow will be some more edits and probably some paid writing.

I had watched a movie from the early 2000s called Stay. I had seen it once before, a very long time ago when I was first married. I didn’t realize it was a Marc Benioff story, you know one of the guys who wrote the Game of Thrones series (including the last season when they really took a nosedive with that–to their credit, they were going off the notes of a guy who likely won’t even finish the story). The movie was good, but like those late 90s early 00s movies, it was very trippy and typical of the time. Very arthousey. I looked up the director and saw that he was only 32 at the time. It’s hard to believe now that they would just give a person that young millions of dollars, some very talented actors (Ewan MacGregor, Ryan Gosling, and Naomi Watts) and just let them run loose with this crazy ass movie like that. I don’t think anything like that could happen today.

At around 10pm, I had a black coffee, but wished I had some whiskey to drink instead. Other than a beer with dinner a few days ago, I haven’t had any whiskey in a couple weeks. Unfortunately, I have reached a point in my life where I’m just very “meh” to it. I get no enjoyment out of it. Or much of anything. Maybe last summer. Yes, that was the last time. Before that, it was probably the trip with my son and my mom to Oregon.

I know a lot of my readers might wonder what the hell I’m grumbling about. I mean I wrote a book (a very, very long book). That’s something to get excited about, right? Writing a book is a lot like having a baby. You should be excited. Everyone else is excited. But you know that the real work is just starting. Writing the book is the fun part. The edits, the queries, writing synopses, the doubt, the rejection…all of those sorta suck. And judging from re-reading the sample chapters I sent to an agent the other day, I am anticipating a rejection soon. In a way, it’s like having a baby too, only everyone you show it off to looks at it and says, “Does he smack himself in the head like that all the time?”

So, right now, I’m just “meh.” You spend all that time writing a book and you know that someone is going to read it and remind you that there is absolutely nothing special about it. And yeah, I do know that most people don’t even make it this far. It’s cold comfort.

I did take the time to do some new writing tonight. I wrote a nice, beautiful scene and then started another one. I don’t think these scenes will go into later drafts of this book. If anything, I think they are for the next project. This one will be about my relationship with cars and road trips. I have plenty of material to pull from on this subject. An entire lifetime really.

Right now, I’m writing this, listening to Portishead and Massive Attack. And yes, a little Depeche Mode. As well as my dog snoring in her chair in my writing room. I think lately I’m coming to terms with the fact that I’m living what they call an “alternative lifestyle.” I don’t make much money. I don’t punch a clock. I’m up here in the middle of nowhere making art and trying to get my dreams off the ground. Relationshipwise, I am an Untouchable, and I’m fine with that these days. I feel like I am a much better writer now than I’ve ever been, but there are still those doubts that it still isn’t good enough. But I’m the one the story chose to tell it, so I have no choice. It’s either that or go crazy up here.

I’m going to read for a while and see if that helps shut my brain up. Otherwise I’m going to worry myself to death about whether or not I hammered home one of the themes in my book.

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