In the last few days, I have worried that, in the end when I was done blowing shit up and talking philosophy, that I wouldn’t have, you know, Something To Say. That I would end up being a Shakespearean idiot and just be making my hour of sound and fury. Not that Something To Say is a requisite, but in the end, I like to leave the building with a little nugget for those who survive the trip to chew on. A parting gift. And so, in the blistering agony of the brain drain, caffeine overload and sleeplessness that has been the last week, I have been wrestling with articulating why I was putting everyone (my darling characters as well, none of which fare very well) through this monstrous ringer.
93,731 words later, I got the nugget. You wanna know? You wanna know the last two words of the book? Come on, you know you’re dying to know.
Peace out, chilluns. I’m printing this fucker and mailing it.
Tomorrow, maybe Tuesday even, I’ll start worrying about my viral beer story for The Boyz. It’s sort of a pain in the ass that my agents actually demand performance. Aren’t they supposed to be doting on me? Fuckers. I got your damn beer story right here, pal. I hope you drop the 500 pages I’m sending you on your foot.
[insert Internet-stylee emoticon signifying nothing but peace and love for those who watch out for me. It’s a tough love between men that we share.]
I’m off to wake the small dude and take him to the toy store. Since there won’t be any heavy drinking in the next few hours, there will, at least, be gratuitous shopping for wee toys for wee dudes. Someone’s got to benefit from the endorphin high I’m on.
Here’s the thing: when you find yourself lying awake at 4.00am having mental arguments about the perceived chain of ownership of two URLs that you have nothing to do with, it’s a sign your brain would rather be doing something else. Like finishing the book. You know, the one that you can see the end of, that only needs the last twenty-eight pages cleaned.
I don’t get out of bed this early on the weekend for any old reason, mind you.
Listening to The Sisters of Mercy this morning, “This Corrosion.” Opening lyric – “Kill the king, when love is the law, And the wheel turn round.” Most of the lyric sites quote the last bit as “and the we’ll turn round” which just makes no sense. The Wheel, though, all the sense in the world. Especially right now when I’m buried in the symbolism of the Wheel of Fortune. Making it go round. Ashes to ashes, dust to dust. Wait for the light, rise up. I’m 83 pages from the end. Hey now, hey now now, sing this corrosion to me.
SOULS OF THE LIVING
New Words: building the connective tissue
Total Words (pages): 92512 (458)
I’m back in the shipping container again, having it out with the Hero and his Obsession. She (the Obsession, and really, it isn’t as two-dimensional as that, it’s just easier to gloss over 50K words by giving them labels) took the whole invented history thread pretty well and actually stepped up and played ball. Nicely done, young lady. (Yes, I am going to pat myself on the back a little here. It’s been a long week of tweaking lines and paragraphs to fold in the deeper understanding of the Relationship With The Obsession and I am pleased to have arrived at a key plot point and found everyone on the same page.)
Now that I’ve Resolved the Obsession, I still have to properly connect the Blowing Shit Up of the Second Half to the Obsessive Quest of the First Half so that it does seem like one book and not two glued together somewhere aroung page 214. All of this quasi coded notation here is really just to say: I have made progress and I am still alive. Thanks for checking in.
I’m also obsessing (speaking of) over the fact that I seem to be listening to a lot more Enigma than I thought. Now that I’ve gone and drunk the Apple Kool-aid and can more readily dump the statistics from a day’s worth of mobile listening, I’ve started to wonder about the trends that are showing up. (I mean, look at that. Top Three: Engima, Garden of Delight, and Bong-Ra. Based on those names, no one will believe me when I say I am not out toking up behind the chemical shed.)
SOULS OF THE LIVING
New Words: edits
Total Words/Pages: 89,534 / 447
I’ve known for awhile that the Prologue is wrong. It reflects an earlier understanding of the impetus of the book. Since the First Lie That Built The World was getting redrafted, I knew this had to be fixed. Of all the words that have been laid down on this book since Time Immemorial (read c. 1992), the Prologue has been spared the red pen. Tonight was its time. Now that I’ve worked my way to the end (well, 99% of the way), I’ve realized what the First Lie truly is. And now I have fixed the text, rubbed sand over the ink and buried the pages put back in a tin can filled with a solution of bat guano, squid ink, termite excrement (they do poop, in case you were wondering), moldy bread, blood and stink of the writer, eight ounces of Guinness and ground dark chocolate (78% pure or better). It needs to properly “sit” for a few days so that it looks like an authentic historical document. You know, a proper Gospel.
Ah, the delight of dumping your head onto a table and surveying it all. Now comes the time of making sure the gun in chapter 1 is used in chapter 12 and the monkeys that eat the world in chapter 29 are properly foreshadowed in chapter 6. This is my world for the next few days: thirty-two chapters, a couple of pens, a stack of reference material and a case of Rockstar (the liquid cancer caffeine beverage du jour).
I’m down to half a chapter and an epilogue. Okay, really, it’s just a “conversation.” The epilogue will shake itself out. One conversation to go. I am THIS close.
Unfortunately, this conversation has to distill 400 hundred years of alchemical research, the Tree of the Sephiroth/Qliphoth and Hermetic discussions of Divinity and the Demiurge. Because, you know, I just couldn’t blow shit up and be done. I have to have talking heads for a few pages first.
The one interesting thing I’ve discovered about my process during this rewrite is the approach to research. Research will kill you if you do it first. If you write what you want to write first and then research the “texture,” then what you find simply accentuates what is there. You know what you want to say, the research simply gives you the tools and terminology to express it better.
However, you still have to write it. One conversation left. The procrastination is underway.