Get up. Feed animals and self. Shower, shave and the et ceteras. Walking, shifting into writing mode –
Full stop. Writing mode never paused. Watching Monroe last night – a terrific series, British, James Nesbitt as a neurosurgeon – writing mode was fully engaged. Later, perusing books to select as the next read – Arithmetist, or The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, Fluke, or something else – there’s that Bryson book, where’s that Bryson book – planning today, tomorrow – blackberry picking, peach picking, yard work, The World’s End (opening at last, yea!), reading the news, talking to my wife, petting the cats and feeding them, walking, cleaning, shopping, errands – I was in the writing mode.
Parallel paths are being written, Stiltman and Marius again. I write pages for one and then pages for the other. So dissimilar in temperament and abilities, their fates are closely related, don’t want to say how close as it reveals too much, but Marius is lost without Stiltman and Stiltman is trying to find Marius, does so but arrives too late. Stiltman tries hard, though. While it sounds noble, it’s because of how much he needs Marius to accomplish his plans and not for concern or love of Marius.
Rachel, Richard and Randy – the three Rs – are related. Randy was written first, in first person. Richard followed, and then I wrote Rachel in parallel to Randy. Mannell’s parts were written independently of one another but he and Stiltman, he and Richard, he and Sra Lhasa are due to cross. Stiltman and Sra Lhasa will also cross. I hear their words forming in the far distance over the mountains of what’s yet left to come. If I pause to look, I see them but I’m not ready to engage them and their scenes. There’s much to pass to fully set the stage for their meeting and confrontation.
Two more chapters were finished. What’s yet to come, the final chapters. Two or three? Four? (There are Marius and Richard, Richard and Stiltman, Stiltman and Mannell, Stiltman and Sra Lhasa – is anyone else present?) They’re urging me on toward their finish. That’s why I never depart the writing mode. I’ve had the manuscript open on the computer. In quiet moments around the house, even while working yesterday and Thursday, I turned and read, polishing. Eating dinner with my wife at a restaurant last night, I thought of a change to make.
Five hundred one pages so far, 162,000 words. It’s mad, I tell you, mad. The best remains to come. Even after writing like crazy and finishing the final chapters, there will be the polishing, and the sanity check reading. I’m looking forward to the polishing.
Then, I ask again, what do I do? Seek agents, self-publish? So many enticing options available for exploration. Yes, looking forward to that as well but now, time to write like crazy again.
Causes Michael Seidel Supports
Kiva, Women's International League for Peace and Freedom, Propublica.org, Doctors Without Borders, GreaterGood.com