Sunday, December 27, 2009

We begin

My mind goes to a strange place when I begin imagining a new story.

I embark upon JUSTINE.
I push away from the shore and see where the winds take me.
I have a map on board somewhere here. And a compass.
I'll consult them eventually.

I use the minutes when I'm falling asleep to see the story. This is a rich time for imagining, of course, but I don't remember it all.
Good stuff, lost.
Maybe it shows up someday in the writing. I hope so anyway.

In my dreams, I'm keeping a blog. I see the words on the screen. I edit. I write. And there's a story I'm working on in my dream.
So weird.

In something approaching IRL . . .

I'm making the jump from my beloved old computer to a new one. These are two identical machines, so it's like some schizophrenic alter ego that looks the same but doesn't have the defaults set right.
I have a newer version of Internet Explorer.
It annoys me.

Next on the agenda is to move everything from the old machine over to the new machine.
It is as if I were Robinson Crusoe unloading the wreck of the ship before it is finally washed away, salvaging one more barrel of nails. Rescuing one shovel, one coil of rope.

I put this dreadful day off till I was finished with Forbidden.

The old machine -- four or five years old now -- became more and more unreliable. I'd be typing away and some keys would stop working. Sometimes the A and the Z would become inert. Sometimes the shift key. Sometimes the M. One never knew.
So exciting.

And the whole shebang turned off at random intervals, taking all my work down with it.

Like the copyedits I was dealing with
under deadline.

These things are sent to try us.

So now I must get the new machine up to speed
and do the galleys.
And the kitchen floor . . . . . . must eventually be washed.
And I'm starting on JUSTINE.


  1. So is Justine the woman of Adrian's heart? :D

  2. SOOO happy to hear this. :)))

    I will, of course, be thrilled to read Forbidden, and cannot wait to get it in my hot little hands. But as you know, Adrian has always had my heart, no matter his age. I only hope Justine is worthy of him. ;)

    It sounds like you plot like I do -- while slipping into the hazy reality between consciousness and sleep. So many possibilities live there. Elusive little buggers come morning, but the ones I've managed to keep hold of are always fun on the page.

  3. Hi Katiebabs --

    We meet Justine in 'Forbidden Rose'. This is one of those spoilers I shouldn't talk about, I think. But whattheheck.

    I don't know much about her yet. Not an 'easy' person. Not a 'nice' person.
    I'll have to see what she's like as I write the book.

  4. Hi Linda --

    I don't know about Justine. I got me a few little threads of her in my hands. There's lots more I have to pick up as we go along.

    I'm writing a traumatized person, who overcomes great loss. I hope I can find the ability to pull it off.

    Some of my research will be looking at folks who were hurt as children. Seeing how they overcome it. I need some insightful biographies.

  5. Anonymous12:52 PM

    What a wonderful post on beginnings and also moving from one computer to another. Good luck and I wish you well on your dreaming....

  6. Hi Janie --

    I think the creative process is kinda the same in all fields. There will be folks planning out tomorrow's menu or a knitting pattern or the next brain operation as they fall asleep tonight.

    All comes out of the same murky, powerful, uchancy part of the brain.

  7. Anonymous12:32 AM

    Hm. Is she also the person who shot Adrian in SL?
    Biographies of people who overcame hurt. Will people like Harriet Tubman and Frederick Douglas count? or does the fact that they were writing about a great, external evil mean they don't reflect internally enough?

  8. Oooh, a tiny glimmer of Justine, and she already sounds fascinating! Go, Jo, go! :)

  9. @ Anon --

    I'm thinking more about people who suffered childhood abuse and loss.

    Hmmm ... I should maybe look at stories of WWII children.

  10. @ Linda --

    I'll post an excerpt of MAGGIE, (Forbidden Rose,) when it gets closer to publication time.

    Justine ... oh, it is very early days yet. Very early. I'm only getting to know her myself.