In Which Clichés Betray Us

12 August 2003

Last night I didn't do so well on the sleeping. (I just thought, "I failed my sleep roll, but not a critical failure." Evidently once a gamergeek, always a gamergeek.) I think this is not entirely unrelated to the fact that I didn't really take time to read much yesterday. A bit with meals, but not much. Not nearly enough to finish the Naipaul (A Way in the World, in case I didn't say, in case you care), so I'm going to try to take the time to do that today. Tired. I lay down and then didn't go to sleep, and I thought, might as well get up and work a bit. But that was not to be: too physically tired. Just not mentally relaxed enough.

Worked on "Heart-Shaped Hole" yesterday, and it's going to be a novelette. I can just feel it becoming a novelette. I may be able to edit it back down over the border again -- don't know. I've just been working on the drafting of it, don't know how much is "extra." But I haven't gotten to the bit with Sila the overgrown weather godlet yet, so I'm pretty sure there's a couple kilowords in there still. Which spells novelette. Crud. I hate trying to sell novelettes. Well, maybe I'll get this one all polished and pretty and it'll sell to one of the first markets I send it to, and the quantity of markets accepting fantasy novelettes won't matter.

(And it's not like I've trunked any novelettes due to lack of markets so far. I just fuss and grump about them, is all.)

I did post pictures here from Carmel, in case they weren't up when you read yesterday's entry.

And it's another day when I got sidetracked and left the entry sitting unfinished on my desktop. Sorry 'bout that. Hey, you know what? I've been eating fresh English peas from the pod, and peas in a pod are not that alike after all. Some of them are, but many of them really aren't. And if you can't trust a cliché, what can you trust?

More freewriting yesterday, based on another postcard, and it didn't touch on preexisting book ideas or story ideas. Except for the bit in the middle where all of a sudden I started talking in Toni's voice about her college experiences. (Toni is the narrator of "Glass Wind," "MacArthur Station," and "Rest Stop," so far, and will have many more stories, at least a dozen, all to herself. Well, herself and her magic-cop-type-thing co-workers and her ex-husband Ian who lives in Pacifica and her sister-in-law and sibspawn and her best friend from college and a bunch of walking archetypes.)

Dagnabbit! There I went and wrote another three paragraphs in her voice again. "Speak of the devil" and all that.

Anyway, I suppose Toni has to count when she shows up and takes over a freewrite. And since she's the heroine of the episodic novel I was talking about yesterday, it's probably no problem that she's popping up in my head more often lately. It's funny how those three stories have started to shape the whole thing for me. It's almost holographic in that regard. I have those pieces, so I can squint and crane my neck and kind of see the whole thing. Other books may be like that, too, but it's less surprising with a traditional novel than with an episodic one, I think.

We had a big long discussion here last night about electronic voting, apathetic electorates, and some difficulties in various recall campaigns out here, but I just don't have anything brilliant to say in summation of it all. I find it pretty silly that Gov. Davis, elected with the votes of 3.5 million people, is claiming that the recall is undemocratic. On January 1 of this year, the state of California estimated a population of 35.6 million. Even if you figure that several million of those are not eligible to vote due to age, felony, or other restriction, that's still not a tide of support running out to vote for Davis, even before all this mess. Sure, the recall will be decided by those who are determined to get out there and vote, and sure, it'll be less than a full voter turnout. This is not different from any other election in my lifetime; it certainly isn't different from the election that got Davis into office. It seems like he's taking the attitude that recalling a governor is wrong in itself and in general principle, rather than trying to defend himself on policy issues. He's probably right that it wasn't good for California to spend the time and money on a recall just now, but it's perfectly constitutional, written into state law and all that, and I don't think it's a wise strategy with the voters.

I think we all three agreed that it would be nice to be able to vote against people in a more general case, having a yes/no vote on each candidate rather than choosing one out of a pool of candidates. But that'll happen right after we abolish the Electoral College, I'm sure, so....

Okay, back to writing, cleaning things out, making phone calls, mopping the moose, feeding the bear, painting Uncle Abner's underwear....

Back to Novel Gazing.

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