Sunday, April 24, 2005


Having finished Kitchen Confidential on the way in to work yesterday, I returned to "Confessions" and lifted myself up and over the 101k mark. Contrary to the directives of public writing mentor Stephen King (who in his excellent book On Writing recommends not letting anyone see your work until you've made two passes through it yosuelf), upon reaching a hundred thousand words I shared the first few chapters of the rough draft with my wife... and she's enjoying it so far!

It feels good to have an excuse to revisit the beginning of the book, as the section I'm working on right now is doing a lot of flashing back, the protagonist finally reaching the point where he's putting two and two together in what has seemed until now just the random data points of his life. This is typically the point where the writing begins to take on a momentum all its own, as the end of the story--at least for now--becomes a tangible entity just over the horizon.

And I'm really looking forward to working on the second draft, since I finally have a firm grasp of both the micro and macro-structure of the novel. Sometimes as a writer you don't apprehend all of the connections yourself until they're spelled out for you on the page, and it'll be fun to rework the first half of the book knowing now exactly how the second half is turning out.

Before the big edit, however, I am going to stick to the master's advice and not touch the damned manuscript for about 3-6 months after I finish it, during which time I intend to bombard my friendly editor at one of the big Sci-Fi and Fantasy magazines with all of the short stories that have been backing up in my skull over the past year while I was bringing "Confessions" home at long last. Surely I'll manage to write something that will pass muster with him, since it seems that with every rejection there's been a little more constructive criticism as well as praise for my writing. So I'll take that as encouragement to keep at it.

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