What I’m Listening To: Yo Yo Ma plays Camille Saint-Saens “The Swan” in Bejing; Lil Buck dances. Seriously, click on this for a moment of perfection.
I’ve reached an experience level (I’ve come to an age when I no longer count years. I am now “leveled up” yearly in experience points) that I recall “Throw Momma From the Train” when it was first released. It’s a movie about a writing teacher (Billy Crystal), his bumbling student (Danny DeVito, who also directed), and the incredibly annoying mother (the insanely talented Anne Ramsey) both of whom want to kill her for differing reasons. In it, Billy Crystal delivers the timeless advice to his students:
“A writer writes.”
(Even though the teacher is suffering from terminal writer’s block over 1 word, which is hilariously solved by Momma).
I thought of this the other day when a co-worker asked me if I was working on a new book. [To recap: most of my co-workers at the bookstore that is my day job (yeah, not as cool as it sounds) are aware I am an author, and that the store carries Book 1 of the Heirs to Camelot series THE MIDSUMMER WIFE (in the mythology section, thank you category selections) and the prequel THE PRIESTESS OF CAMELOT.] Occasionally they inquire as to how things are going.
I told her about Book 2 THE SOLSTICE BRIDE awaiting publisher edits. Then I explained how I was re-editing Book 3 MISTRESS OF THE ROSE MOON which involves a lot of tearing out whole chapters and moving around action and changing POV because apparently my default writing style is “poor relation to Jane Austen,” which doesn’t exactly fly in today’s fast paced reading/viewing preferences.
“Cool,” she said. “So what’s your next book about?”
In point of fact, I have a couple of projects wandering around in my head. It’s just that they have not yet seen fit to settle down and become a story (with funny things like a plot, and a reason to be roaming about). I am closer to starting on a humorous space opera. But I am also thinking about a big generational sci-fi/historical book.
Her eyes glazed over, so I changed the subject.
I am a believer in the writing process covering activities that don’t involve pen to paper or tapping away on a keyboard. A lot of writing is playing with stories in your head until they feel “real” enough to write down.
But “a writer writes,” and I haven’t done a lot of new writing–just a lot of “ideating.” I need to get to the writing stuff, and soon!