Publication Update: My short story “Lenore” (which inspired my character in my psychological, dystopian novel) will appear in The Milo Review online and in print) 3/22. Thrilled!!!
While writing Lenore, MC, I’m getting a sense that her suffering is numbing her to the point where she
has trouble distinguishing between reality and illusion. But that’s what makes her so uniquely appealing (I hope) is that chronic ambiguity. I am plowing along at a rapid pace and close to working draft at 200 words. Oddly, my MC’s are writing their own stories and I’m still not sure how they will reunite. One remains in the East. The other is trying to adapt in the West, hiding out on Haight Street, experiencing old world living, with her brother and his liberated nudist girlfriend, Moonie–well actually just decided it will be Moonie– just this very moment. I needed to get her back in the picture. Sh. Don’t tell.
The ordinary is always shortlived in dystopia. The scene that begins as plain becomes extraordinary, intriguing and suspensful with a dynamic flow: Lenore notices the butcher chopping, the smock smeared with blood, and, meanwhile, conversation revolves around the weather, the order of meat, the cost, the mundane idle chatter that is polite and plain but masks a bigger issue, a darker more sinister reality such as Lenore being held captive and silenced by her Sire, Adam. It is the trigger– the butcher chopping, slapping flipping the bloody meat onto its side, that elicits a repressed thought to emerge. And when it does, there is no turning back. An ordinary trip to the butcher on a Thursday to pick up an order of meat goes awry.
I need a description of an attic in an old New England estate–any takers? I’m willing to pay $100.00 for the best one.
Well, not exactly. I’m lucky if I have $25 in my bank account.
But, sometimes, Lord, I trip over a moment that needs refining, and I can’t move forward until that piece is done, and done right. That means, I have to dig in, research, study images, or, even better, visit an old estate, walk up into the attic–feel, taste, touch it–only then can I write it. Any less, is hogwash–incomplete.
Updates on writing:
I have been at work on my novel and 130 pages in now and feeling good about its direction. I was waffling with the pov and tense, but I have settled on the traditional– third person past tense. It works best.
I have a new title too which is perfect. Yet, I will not share any part of my novel until it’s published.
I realize that the genre a crucial piece, and so I will stick with dystopian–even thought it is ripe with other elements and I’m not sure about the saturation of dystopian. I hope mine is not overdone. It is written with adults in mind, so that is one aspect that is different (maybe). I’m definitely not writing with teens in mind.
My goal is to complete a draft in a month (maybe two). It is a lofty goal, but I think I can do it. Each day I have a new scene, a new idea. I’m immersed so completely that I am drained, at times. I can write up to 10k words in a sitting if I’m focused enough–with few distractions. But then there is the returning for edits, the evolving of a new idea or strand, and on it goes. Always a process.
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