Wednesday, June 14, 2017

We Are Rolling?

There have been other times recently when I felt like, yes, things were in motion. The story was being told. Pages were adding up. Stuff was happening.

Each time, the energy sooner or later wandered off, twiddling its thumbs with boredom.

One of the last things that Monique said to me was, "You have to let it do what it wants to do. That's the only way it can come to life."

This has always meant that, whatever I thought the plan was, I'm going to have to let it slip its leash and then just trundle along after it, cleaning up as I go. This means, for a writer, that every time any  character does something that wasn't in the script, the entire script that came before needs to be tweaked to make it fit.Foreshadowing as afterthought. Buildup as cleanup.

The reward, however, is a story that's actually alive. And in the last few days, Aias has continually done things that I absolutely did not expect. So the cleaning up has been extensive, but totally worth it.

Monday, June 5, 2017

I Am Not a Lawyer And...

...  I don't even play one on TV.

Nevertheless, I have long, long been aware that if I am going to include brief quotations from various people at the heads of chapters, I should gracefully and officially note those quotes, lest someone object and sue me.

Lucky for me, Word includes a reference tab. I fiddled with references and footnotes, and finally settled on using endnotes, which would be the least obtrusive, and let me assemble all the notes on a single page following the entire text. See?

You will learn; you will all learn. But not from me.[i]
— John Gardner

This is the opening quote for volume one, The Hostage. It sits all alone on its very own page, after the dedications page and before page one of the actual story. And on the final page of the entire book, is:

[1] Gardner, John. Grendel. Alfred A Knopf, 1971.

Simple, unobtrusive, and I dare say, elegant.

 Then, after more than a few clumsy experiments and with thanks to the internet for hunting the quotes down (especially Goodreads, which often includes the sources of quotes, which most quotation sites don't), I was able to relocate and cite the immediate sources of all 15 quotes except two. For those, I cheated by citing one of the authors' books that the title implied MIGHT be where the quote could be found.

And this whole process, from learning to formatting to fiddling to completion, took only about 3.5 hours including pouring and reheating coffee, and writing this blog entry.

SO glad that I am no longer an academic!