Saturday, December 20, 2014

Ever Wondered What Goes Into Writing A Book?

Have you ever wondered what goes into writing a book?  Probably not.  When you walk into that hushed sanctuary called a library, or the soon to be defunct (please, God, no!) book store and are surrounded by zillions of books, I think we all take for granted that the books somehow just sprang into being by the wonderfully creative mind of someone like Hemingway in between hanging out at the local tavern.

I’m working on the umpteenth number of the draft of my book about a hapless American man who brings a mail order bride to the United States, only to have it backfire in a way that none of us could have anticipated.  The book has sex, intrigue, cars, things blowing up and a few fun surprises that even I didn’t see coming.

It also has a plot hole big enough to drive a car through.

Well, maybe not that big, but when I should be working on my story, instead I’m either taking those fun quizzes on Facebook that tell me what kind of dog personality I have (beagle) or what kind of drug I would be if I were a drug (ecstasy) or what color my personality is (plaid).

I’ll bet you thought that all your favorite books were written in a few inspired sittings.  The truth is, it’s hours upon glorious hours of butt numbing, rewriting, thinking, reading, re-reading until your eyes cross, getting up and walking to the fridge for junk food, sitting down again, cutting, pasting, deleting, writing some more, doing a quiz on Facebook, answering emails, writing some more, getting up and dancing around the living room to Led Zeppelin, writing some get the picture.

Before I go back to my story, a plea from whoever is reading this.  Do you have a book title?  Think Eastern European Bride with an attitude.

Now back to my story.

Monday, December 1, 2014

Pleasure Point

Screen Shot From My Win!
Last night marked the official end of this year’s National Novel Writing Month Competition.

I have never written so many words, so fast.

292 pages of 96,013 words.

I just had to share my excitement with everyone because I can’t believe how great this feels.

The goal of the contest was to write 50,000 words in 30 days.  The goal was also to tell a complete story in that amount of words/time.  When I wrote my outline, I looked at it and said, “This is going to be at least 80,000 words.  Yikes!”

It was an intense month of sitting, creating, listening to lots of Led Zeppelin, doing hot yoga to loosen up my muscles and staring dreamily at the photo of my main character who is a big wave surfer.

So...I’ve got a first draft of my novel.  The working title is Pleasure Point.  It’s a story about a big wave surfer who has...a bit of a sex addiction.  But once I got to know him, I found out that he only wanted...well, you’ll have to read the book to find out.  He barely survived a stalker, getting wiped out on a big wave at Todos Santos and a few other unfortunate events.  I was so worried about him.  How will it all end?

It ended with me writing the words, “The End” just as the sun was setting over the Pacific Ocean last night.  As I moved my computer monitor aside to look at the sunset, one of my favorite Pearl Jam songs ended at exactly the moment that the sun dipped into the ocean.  I like to take this as a good omen.  The book’s a long way from being done but I will keep you posted.

I would like to thank big wave surfer Grant “Twig” Baker, who helped me with some technical questions as well as being one of the most gracious athlete’s I’ve ever met, and the book The Big Juice by John Long and Sam George which I was able to adapt some real life big wave stories for my character.  Thanks to my husband Kerry for drinking coffee with me every morning and giving me great plot ideas. xoxoxo

Today...we celebrate.