Friday, February 27, 2009

Enough Winter - I'm Running Out of Ink!

You'd think when the posts have been rather scanty through February that I'd have more to talk about than the weather. But people - it was -32 Celsius this morning. That is without a wind chill! I don't even think that's legal! Again, it is what I call scary cold. There are no dog walks happening and the day involved work, home, followed by remaining indoors. I emerged from days of revisions for this! On the upside, two stories have reached completion - okay, one not quite.

I love them both yet they are both incredibly different stories. I guess those that have children can say the same. You love them each as much - just different.

On so many mornings, with winter cold still raging around me - I emerge for a cup of coffee and retreat again into the basement where a story breathes the edges of completion and another one beats in the wings. The dregs of winter maybe - but the stories are coming as quick and sure as spring.
In less than one month, by the calendar, it will be spring. But in Saskatchewan I predict there will be snow, and lots of it. In the meantime, there is nothing to do but write!

On the other hand that's not totally true - there is snowkiting!

From the Dust
Ryshia's MySpace

Friday, February 20, 2009

Writing Before the Computer

Before computers and even before typewriters, how long did it take to complete a book?
As I finish off final drafts on two manuscripts I’m amazed by the writers of the past. With typewriter and whiteout or worse, with pen and ink, they drafted stories. How many rewrites did they write with cramped fingers in poor light and drafty rooms? But what amazes me most is that they wrote without an easy ability to rewrite. How did they do it?
Possibly the quality wasn’t as good.

Well, that theory is immediately pitched before the thought can even settle. Pull any classic off the shelf. I’m fairly sure that Tolstoy met today’s standards and then some and that Shakespeare’s work still holds its own plus, against any and all on the shelf. Many contemporary authors began with only a typewriter or pen. Read their earlier work and it compares well or better against current novels. So how did they do it?

Did they think long hours before putting that first word to paper? Did they have a rock solid outline that allowed for no error?

I’m sensing that neither was the case. That many wrote from their heart, like many writers today. But they loved what they did so much that it was never toil. A book just took a little longer than it does today. But when it was done, it was something special. For I’m sure of one thing. Writing without a word processor was more a labor of love than any of us today can ever imagine!


Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Snow at Night

I was reading an incredible story the other day when I stopped dead. The story came to a screeching halt. It was rather like I'd stubbed my toe in the midst of a beautiful walk. There it was staring up at me - the glitch. The heroine was running through the snow at night and it was so dark she couldn't see anything.
If you're from snow country you know that once that first blanket of snow arrives and fully covers everything it is never totally dark again. At least not when there's a town or city within a few miles. Snow reflects light from anything and everything including the night sky. In this instance there was a town nearby.
Note to self - don't skim on the research on anything, not just writing. Take the exercise ball. Apparently there is a correct way for sitting on the ball and a length of time that it should be sat on, at least initially. Just ask my massage therapist. She gave me all the details as she worked my shoulder back into what might resemble a normal position.

Fir trees and a snowbank in the dark, no light nearby.


Sunday, February 1, 2009

The Exercise Ball

Yesterday, with some trepidation I acquired an exercise ball. What is that rule?

If it seems to easy, it is too easy.

Well, what could be easier than sitting on a ball, writing and getting core strength all at the same time. I know, I know - too easy. Or maybe you're asking what's core strength. I won't get into it in this post - a google of exercise balls will tell you everything you ever wanted to know. In the meantime, my office now has what looks like a giant beach ball.
Surprisingly, other than feeling rather silly, it's fairly comfortable. What it will do - if it doesn't deflate first, time will tell.