Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Unedited Freeflow & Still More Blood

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1:50 p.m. It’s Day Three of Butt-Sitting-In-Chair and I really don’t want to write. I am feeling, not a writer’s block, but a rut, and how can this be? This is what I want to do. I need to figure some things out with my storyline. There are at least three separate parts to it. The 1988 part. The 2009 part where Marnie is married. And then the 2009 part where Marnie is reconnected with her 1988 “Luvah”… that one who got away who maybe should have never got away, but maybe he should have? Maybe he should have never been? How would her life been different had she never met him? How would she have been a different person had she never had the experiences in her life with him? What kind of person would she have become had she not met him the night he wanted to pull her panties from her 19-year-old body?

These are the kinds of questions I ask myself as I sit down to try to wrestle with this writing thing. And then I wonder how is the second part of this book going to match up with the exciting first part of the book, which to me is really steamy and full of emotion and just what that first time stuff really feels like. And I don’t know if I can bring that kind of stuff into the second part. And I’m wondering if I should alternate chapters… go with a 1988 chapter, then switch to a 2009 chapter where Marnie is grappling with a loss, and dealing with two young sons, and a husband who is… well, what is he? His name is Stuart, I know this. I think he might be in aviation. He is maybe a pilot. Someone who is out of town a lot. And sidenote. I love, love, love this song: I Saw, By Matt Nathanson, and I think I will put a clip of it here if I can find one on Youtube.

[Okay, I found so many of them (after I wrote this of course, that I spent about another half-hour listening and watching. His music is just beautiful, and inspires my writing! This is how I want my characters to live, breathe and feel!]

Does this count as my writing fiction, because maybe this is kind of like my research? I’m researching my thoughts to try to figure out what I’m going to write about, and I’m also going to just post this as my blog post. So yes, this is how my mind is currently working. It’s quiet here, and I’ve got to get it figured out. I’ve got to write. And by the way, WHERE IS ALL THAT FREAKING BLOOD! Where is all the giving that I know you all have in you?

OK, so Stuart is a loving husband, but I think that maybe he might be a little insensitive, like how most guys are, like they don’t know they’re insensitive, they just are. Maybe it’s because they’ve just been married too long, are just too comfortable with the routine, and just are too expectant of one another, and Stuart and Marnie take one another for granted. And of course, with any novel, she is wanting something more. What is it that she wants. What is it that she wants out of life? OK, and here’s another song playing, and it’s another one by Matt Nathanson, and it’s a good one too. Nope, wrong, Mat Kearney, Breathe In, Breathe Out:

This is the music that helps me think.

So, I think Marnie wants to be loved in her marriage. Yet she wants those feelings from 1988, where everything was a what if, but those are scary feelings too, but also exciting feelings, but she was scared back then too, and some terrible things happened to her then too, and why would she want to dredge up the bad stuff, when even though her life is boring now, it’s also a safe and calm environment. She’s got a loving husband, two good kids, even if they are hyperactive young boys (what boys are not hyperactive?)… what is she searching for that she doesn’t have? And am I secretly searching for these things as well? That’s what I wonder sometimes too? Is the fiction that I’m writing really an extension of some things in my life that I feel I have missed out on so I feel like I need to recreate those environments in my writing so I can live through my characters somehow?

I don’t know. All I know is that I just wrote all of this in 11 minutes and I don’t know if I’m any closer to figuring anything else out. But I wrote something. So, I guess that’s good.

And if you took the time to listen to the Breathe In, Breathe Out video, you’ll hear the first words:

Breathe in, breathe out, tell me all of your doubt, everybody bleeds this way, just the same. Out of all the songs in the entire world for me to be listening to today, completely and honestly randomly, THIS one has a message in it, about bleeding.

What’s stopping you from making your donation? From saving someone’s life? Today even?


Monnik said...

oh manic... I wish I could donate because then I would look cool in your eyes. Sadly, each time I go in to attempt to donate, they prick my poor little finger and send me away because my hemoglobin is too low...

But I applaud your effort. Go non-anemic readers!! Give Blood!!

Monnik said...

also, regarding the creative process of your story... i love listening to how you're reaching to get there. it's amazing. the story sounds really good and REAL too. Give us more!

Roger Miller said...

Are you sure you don't want to have 2009 Marnie meet up with her Great-Great-Great-Great Grandmother in the old west? With Lasers!!

Okay, seriously, it sounds like Marnie is going through a mid-life crisis (duh!) and just has those flashes of nostalgia that we as human beings often do. However, nine (more likely 9.9)times out of ten, it turns out that theiry life is actually a pretty good deal -"It's a Wonderful Life" - anyway, why not go for that .1 time out of ten, where it turns out her life would have turned out better, and still can with the 'luvah' (that right?) from the past. Make Marnie choose the past.

Then clean up afterwards. :-)

Granted Marnie would then be a cold-hearted B, but it could be a challenge to write.

As for the 'is it fiction?' question... I believe that all writer's put a little bit of ourselves in our own writings... so it is understandable to feel that way. Just remember your life isn't fiction though, otherwise we could do whatever we wanted without any repercussions at all.

Don't you wish I was still a lurker? :-)

Unknown said...

Now I have the Bowling for Soup song 1985 going through my head.

I'm thinking start with 2009 Marnie with flashbacks from 1985 as memories are triggered...

MaNiC MoMMy™ said...

Monnik--YOU ARE TOTALLY ALREADY COOL IN MY EYES! You have been a long-time reader who has always stopped by with a kind word and comment!

And Roger... ENOUGH WITH THE WESTERNS before I shoot you! Ha! I think with fiction, the only thing that matters is that the writer makes sure the reader goes away with a sense of feeling not let down.

Whether she ends up with the first love, with the husband, by herself, or dead in the gutter, it's up to the writer to make sure that the reader is not left feeling ripped off!

MaNiC MoMMy™ said...

Andrea, I am leaning toward the switching of past to present... I think that would move the reader through the story. And the chapters are going to be really short ones, but not as short as James Patterson's!

Thanks for the feedback!

NerdyRedneck Rob said...

Oh great! Now I am going to have "Breath in, Breath out" stuck in my head for the rest of the day! :)

MaNiC MoMMy™ said...

Hey Rob, keep breating dude. It's good for you. Know what else is good for you? Donating some blood, dude. Really good for ya! And someone else too! Lifesaving, in fact!

Anonymous said...

Yay you, working so hard on your writing! And it sounds like you're making terrific progress, too. Well, ultimately how to place everything in the book is going to be up to you, but before you even mentioned it I was thinking, alternating chapters. There will be some mystery know, what happened in that long-ago, far-away time that has made her who she is today? What's so important about it? I think you could really build up some suspense there.

Kate said...

Okay, you need to sit down and write that so I can READ IT! I want to know what happens.

I have an I Wonder Guy. Every time I get bored or hubby and I are feeling disconnected or even sometimes when I'm discontented with my job, I think about him and what if... In my case, I think it's more wondering how life could be different and not that I should have been with that guy. Oh, and my hubby is lovely and we're a matched set.

Kate said...

Oh, and to add to the Western-With-Lasers angle, there need to be Evil Robots!

I'm still teasing my student who answered a question on a Macbeth test about interest in the future and talked about the Evil Robots. Who knew a Shakespeare test could inspire discussion of evil robots in the future? ;)

Carrie Wilson Link said...

LOVE that song! Can't wait to hear what happens in your book!

Shelley said...

I know what Marnie wants! She wants to feel sexy and desired and hot! She wants that feeling from when it was all new, and hot and dirty. She wants some friggin' excitement in her life, to be swept away and taken and...

Well, I'm assuming anyway. I'm in no way drawing from my own life there. No way. Hi Manic! :)

L. Lemanski said...

I love listening to your creative process. You're working it out! And, news! My old student council (I used to be the advisor before going on maternity leave) is holding a blood drive on Friday and I'm going to drag J and try to give! (Ha, that sounds funny, I'm going to give BLOOD, not J . . . )

I really find these lines riveting: "Is the fiction that I’m writing really an extension of some things in my life that I feel I have missed out on so I feel like I need to recreate those environments in my writing so I can live through my characters somehow?"

Go with it . . . What would you want if you were her? Duh, I'm sure you ask that all the time!

I like alternating chapters/dates. As long as it is clear to the reader, I think it is a unique path on which to take them.

Stephanie J. Blake said...

The process you are describing is something I call "thinkering."

You are thinking about your characters and the story, but it's stuck in your head. It's hard to start, but just put the words to paper and don't worry about the perfection of the story, yet.

Tanya said...

Alternating chapters could be a lot of fun. I like stories that are not necessarily chronological.

The most recent book I read opened with a part in the middle. Then you get the adventure of getting to that moment, and the effects of that action once it has happened.

Unknown said...

I'm all for short chapters if the material is good! :)

Anonymous said...

Go Manic with the blood drive. Stopped by excellent Barb's blog. Because she asked, I told her I had a crappy day. (Think I'll have another eggnog and Seagrams.)
Love to hear about your story.
Goodnight - KR