This picture is not part of the original post -- I just stole it. (My mom's been hit by a smooth criminal)
First off, I want to thank everybody for their outpouring of sympathy on that last post. Pepper was a sweet dog, the Veenie-Babies miss her terribly, and I truly appreciate your compassion and understanding. This blog is supposed to be about my family as much as it is about my writing, but for the most part, I often end up focusing on the writing. I guess what I'm trying to say is: it's really nice to have my writer friends are lifting us up in this non-writing-related matter.
And so... life goes on.
I suppose we could talk about writing fer a spell.
A couple posts ago, I mentioned how my agent suggested I "develop other projects" while we wait for news on our submissions. At first, I had this really quirky idea for a futuristic, dark, 'Little Mermaid' adaptation, but whenever I described it to somebody, thier eyes would glaze over and they'd give me this phony half-smile -- "That sounds... interesting."
So that particular plot is now interred in my extensive idea graveyard.
Instead, I've returned to what is perhaps one of my most original, creative, and marketable ideas ever. I actually wrote 173 pages of a first draft about two years ago, but then had to scrap it because of serious flaws with pacing, plot progression, and a disturbing lack of character development. Somehow the thing was moving way too quickly, but getting nowhere. Dead leaves in a strong wind. Anybody ever have a problem like that? If so, I'd sure like to hear how you dealt with it.
(Boredom alert -- technical babbling to follow)
My plan so far has been to de-constuct the plot in a spreadsheet. I'm hoping to get a good view of the bare skeleton, in order to decide where scenes need to be added, cut, or moved around. I'm done with that step, and now I'm re-writing the central plot, and hoping to superimpose the new skeleton over the old. Then I can start cutting and moving and adding according to a more impartial and intelligent plan. Does that sound too clinical? Too organized? A part of me just wants to keep busy while I wait for good news from my agent, but the artist in me is sort of disgusted by that attitude.
"It's an awesome story idea, Ray, it deserves your best effort."
"Don't lecture me, Ray... jeez... I hate when you get all artsy and snobby."
"Sorry, man -- want to grab a sandwich?"