Saturday, 2 August 2014

Frank Was Right

This weekend marks the first weekend that I will stay in town, and not leave for a campsite or what have you. This brings some interesting challenges, as I can’t just stay in one parking lot all weekend, people will notice.

This brings up an interesting happening this morning. While this may have been my imagination I noticed a small white SUV parked in an odd way pointing right at me with his parking lights on. I was about to start to make coffee so I ignored it. When I looked up again, a few moments later, the car had moved again but was still facing me. A moment later this car had moved again but still was facing me. 

The creepy thing was that each time I looked up I could see it and it could see me, even though I was in a different part of the trailer each time. I decided this was too weird and time to move somewhere else to have breakfast. 

As I drove out of the parking lot I made sure to drive by and look at said car, this time there was nobody in it but some old man glared at me as he was entering the nearby grocery store. This is the closest thing I have had to any sort of harassment, other than being kicked out of a parking lot at ten pm that one time.

As I write this I am sitting in a library in Calgary, where I am not here to steal internet, but AC Power. (evil cackle). I wrote for a while yesterday afternoon and indeed was able to finish Chapter 3. So I am here to write Chapter 4 and perhaps start on Chapter 5. 

I was trying to figure out various ways I could extend the power I get out of Ace, when it hit me. Libraries are wonderful places, usually with study areas. So I looked up my local library and vuala, here I am. I can write all day until closing (as long as I behave myself) and Ace can charge up in the truck. I may return tomorrow and Monday, who knows.

I let a friend of mine, whose opinion I respect, read the very rough draft of the first two chapters of what I have so far. His response was blunt and to the point (as expected and appreciated), in telling me that it was nowhere near ready to be seen or read by anyone. He made suggestions on essentially a total rewrite, and I considered doing just that. 

Then I sat and thought about my own writing process. I write where the first pass is just to get the story down. It is just to establish what I call ‘The Skeleton’ of the story. What happens when and when do I describe what. 

Once the whole story is written, then I go through with much less stress and just focus on the craft of telling the story. That is when I look to enhance this moment or shorten that section. I even take out things which are redundant. I don’t edit it once I do this a number of times until it gets to a point where I make little changes and have gone over the whole thing, like ten times (or more). 

I am not saying that this is perfect but it is the system that I have developed for me. Which brings up another point, my entire writing career (as yet unpaid) has been self-taught. Sure I went to film school and they had a class on screenwriting, so I learned about that aspect sure. Even then in that aspect I have devised my own method of writing scripts. 

The mistake I made was to let someone read a very rough version of the story. This person is used to seeing something closer to the finished product, and thus expected better. I get it, I understand it. I know it can and will get better, in time. I will not make the same mistake again and simply plug along in my own way and keep this story to myself until I feel it is ready for someone else to read it. 

I know that for me, right now, this is what I need to do . . . I need to do it my way. 

Once it is to a state where I feel it is ready, then I will let said friend tear it apart again . . . to make it even better.

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