I am still in the trenches. Last week, I said I would pop my head up again, “all things being well”.
That may be something of an overstatement. The novel goes slowly, more slowly than it needs must (is that an actual sentence? It sounds like it should be. I guess this sort of digression has something to do with why the novel goes slowly. If I’m having to ask what constitutes a sentence, I am clearly in trouble).
But today was better than yesterday. There is progress. And that is a good thing, on a Thursday, when the book is due on a Monday.
And three other good things, on this Thursday, are:
1. Seeing a display of The Truth About Penguins, complete with large poster of my smiling face, in the window of The Singing Tree in Albany, right next to that little-known author Stieg Larsson. I have a photograph but it is being held hostage by my phone.
2. Having the opportunity to talk picture books recently with an editor who has the wonderful insight of someone who clearly loves what they do. I feel very lucky to be part of this field.
3. Seeing an early cover idea for my forthcoming novel, Surface Tension. I have set it as the wallpaper for my monitor and it is spurring me on through my rewrite. Though I have to admit that I love it so much I fear any book I produce won’t be able to live up to it. It’s quite the paradox.
And with that, I return to the trenches. This time next week, the battle will be over (but not the war, I am sure. Somehow, there is always more rewriting to do. It’s just that when I submit a draft, I like to pretend, for the briefest of times, that I am that most slippery of things – finished).
I'm sure I speak for many when I say I would hate to think of you being finished! (Though I do understand the luxury of the feeling of “done!” So distant these days…) Hope summer is on its way for you – no sign of autumn leaves here, but who can complain when its sunny?
I never feel as though I'm finished with anything I write. I can go back after countless revisions and still find repeated words, lame descriptions, and clunky language. It is SO frustrating, but now that I know I'm not the only one who does it, I feel greatly reassured.
How wonderful to find a display of your own book in a bookstore. I'd be so tempted to stand by it all day with a foolish smile on my face!