The Evil Chuckle of a Story in Progress

This morning is a good example of why I’m looking forward to doing this writing thing full time. Yes, this is almost certainly just me saying the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence, but you would think that after about two decades of this I would get better at making stories happen at a more rapid pace. You would think I wouldn’t have to break things into their structural elements at times, or that characters would just make themselves do perfectly normal things that are still interesting to read about. Unfortunately, you would think wrong.

Or, I guess I should say I would think wrong. I’m the silly one here. You probably think just fine.

Anyway, it still takes a lot of thought for me to get things right. And it takes work at the keyboard to make it happen, and it takes focus to make it happen in ways that I like and ways that I think are interesting.

So I’m working on what I fully expect to be the last cycle through Lords of the Freeborn, or episode seven of my serial. These serials are long pieces, fairly complex pieces that take considerable thought in order to make them play both as stand-alone stories and as true episodes that move the world along. I can’t just pull them out of my … er … behind.

Other than basic line smoothing, I’ve entered this last cycle with five story goals n mind–five specific things to fix. I addressed most of the first item today, but the fact is that I’m up against my morning deadline, and now have to leave it sit. So tomorrow morning I’ll pick it up again–which will take 10-15 minutes just to get into the same state I’m in right now. Once I’m in the flow, things move along pretty well. But getting into the flow is where the magic is.

I would take a break here no matter what (I’ve been working for about 90 minutes, not counting a brief breakage for helping Lisa ), and I have a tendency to work in 90 minute chunks whenever I can, but if I were already working this gig full time I could probably finish this episode either today or tomorrow. As it is, it may take all the way through the weekend. We shall see.

* … that sound you hear is almost certainly episode seven chuckling its evil chuckle at me. “As if we would let him finish,” it says … either that, or that chuckling is the sound of other full-timers chortling with derision and splurtting Diet Coke out their noses at the idea of being more productive as a full-timer … I hear them now: Ron, don’t you know the internet steals all your time? And cookies … yes, cookies are good to focus on … and laundry … always laundry to do rather than write … or …

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