Monday, August 4, 2014

Back to Business

With the flurry of summer sales and giveaways and such (and a round of edits on Corral Nocturne) safely behind me, I've finally settled back into near-daily writing. Perhaps it's because of all that time I was forced to take off in the spring, but right now I tend to work in frantic bursts of hours on end, unwilling to tear myself away from the notebook. Working in this manner, I astounded myself by finishing up two half-completed short stories in just a few days, just before my family took a week's vacation. I'd had those stories on my conscience for months, and I figured it was time to just get them done for good and all.

I seem to operate better when I have short-term goals. Right now I'm in the middle of another short story that I've had planned for a very long time, which will also be very pleasant to have off my conscience. It and the two I just mentioned, all Westerns, are intended for my next collection of Western stories; and when I finish this current one I'll have a total of six completed story drafts to edit and put together into that collection at leisure. Could we see it published this year? Possibly, but I don't want to make any rash predictions.

After finishing this story, I intend to go back to The Summer Country, which I have no excuse not to finish with nearly half of the first draft done already and a full and coherent outline to work from.

Meanwhile, I've been picking away at my summer reading. This might be the first year in recent memory where I arrive at the end of August with a few books from my list still unread—no matter, they'll keep just as nicely for fall and winter. To be fair, I have filled in the gaps with some smaller things—re-reading Saki, for instance (I am still split between liking and disliking him); and after finishing Miss Elizabeth Bennet I discovered two volumes of Milne's plays in the public domain and of course had to read them all. They made charming, relaxing reading for sunny afternoons on the deck. I do not think there is such a thing as too much Milne.

Interlibrary loan has failed to find me a copy of Tarkington's National Avenue as yet. I'll give 'em a few more weeks, and then start hunting a used copy of my own. Who knew it would be so hard to finish out a trilogy?


Emily Ann said...

I like how you said about books being on your conscience. I've been thinking a lot about how God gives us writers a gift and we have the responsibility to use them wisely and share it with the I'm working on sharing my writing, though it's hard at first! Anyway, I'm about to go buy a paperback copy of The Mrs. Meade Mysteries! Can't wait to read it!! =) Thank you for sharing your gift of writing with the world!

Jack said...

It is great you are making writing progress. That is always a lovely feeling. And having books left over just means you don't have to spend too much time in the fall hunting down new ones.