Saturday, August 19, 2017

The Wall

Running Surfer On The Drift through Grammarly, the faults cropping up with soul-crushing regularity are 'Passive voice' and 'Possibly confused word.'



More troubling is the sense I've hit the wall.  Every novel I've written, the wall thrusts up into existence.  Sometimes, more than once.  

The wall is the point where objectivity checks out, and right now, I can't tell if any of the story makes sense, and even if it does make sense, Monty's narration is fluctuating from enjoyable to annoying, not only chapter to chapter, but paragraph to paragraph.  

I'll just blame my chest cold and keep soldiering on, because that's what bad-asses (and bad-writers) do, 24/7.  






Thursday, August 17, 2017

Surfer On The Drift

From today:


Organ failure was the Siamese twins listed cause of death, the outcome from a lifetime of constant alcohol abuse.  Ms. Drope didn't waggle a finger at a specific brother, but she did relate the likelihood Bill had fathered (and abused) an illegitimate child, and in his heyday, could rumoredly outdrink any other circus performer alive, bearded or otherwise. 

Monday, August 14, 2017

Surfer On The Drift

From today:


I'd swung the hammer. Something far away but with an eye on this world had supplied it.  It was like a video game, your character entering some enchanted spot and earning bonus lives or food or information.  I'd earned a hammer.  I now possessed a hammer instilled with cosmic oomph.  Or to borrow the version of a certain swear word that swept Ashton Elementary back in 3rd grade, one royal mommyhumper of a hammer. 

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Afternoon Frolic (or) Pretty Birds




Monty and Dawn.  A work-in-progress by Jenny Dayton (aka MsDandyGelatine).

I thought I'd give Surfer some rest.  Instead, I remain hip-deep revising Monty Strahl-Part Two. 

The terror of revision always strikes from finding those passages that peel back a layer of identity, and boom! you're face-to-face with the gibbering butterfingered goon that apparently held your keyboard hostage, temporarily at best, but more realistically, half the manuscript-length or so.

But as previously stated, I will stick to productivity or end up zoning out to this.      


Saturday, August 12, 2017

Damn you, Max Von Sydow

Surfer On The Drift is done in as much as any first draft is ever set in stone. It's the second book in a series about a 12-year-old boy ghost.  I haven't corrupted the series with an official title. 'Montgomery Strahl, Boy Ghost' or 'The Skeleton Key Books' seem applicable.  

Monty's story isn't a well-planned out beast.  It's not a trilogy. There's no final act I know of lingering out there.  

Similar to the way some authors age their characters (Connelly, Silva, etc.), Monty is locked into a slow-moving purgatory of sorts. His friends are getting older, have gone through puberty, are getting close to high school graduation and college, and he's always going to be a kid.  

It makes for good internal tension.  Monty is an odd-ghost-out, capable of considerable feats - many of them violent - and it makes him an outsider to the rest of the dead.  And what solace he can find with the living is thin gruel. Thinning all the time as peers move closer to adulthood, or in the case of his parents, replacing their dead first-born with more children.

But I'm not writing about the kid to beat him up.  I think I'm writing about Monty because he can make the dead move, and get entangled in some fairly gross plotlines.  If I were in middle-school, I'd want to read about a dead kid that can get away with all kinds of shit while at the same time, saving lives, or arguably, saving all of humankind.    

So now, in a little over a year, I've pounded out Exit The Skin Palace, Grimgrak, and Surfer On The Drift.  

Currently, my little fingers are crossed, waiting to hear back from one literary agent about Exit, and also, waiting to see the fate of my PitchWars submission.  

I don't do social media, and self-promotion very well.  The highlights of my Facebook are usually sharing the exploits of Buckley the Highland Cow. The rest of the time, I can't help but share or retweet the latest dark skies courtesy Mercy For AnimalsThe Light Movement, or Animal Equality.  For this likely fatal inability to play "nice", I blame the everlasting influence of Max Von Sydow's human-shunning artist in Hannah and Her Sisters.     

I'm terrified of lifting the lid on Grimgrak.  I'm near the brink of losing objectivity on Surfer.  I could start to rope together my hodgepodge Sylvia Plath/vampire/sci-fi idea, but with three novels already in the hopper, and two of them not quite all the way fit for human consumption, the prospect of a fourth offspring is somewhat chilling.  But still, what the hell else am I going to do at 2:00 AM except write or maybe watch this on an endless loop?    


(Artwork (c) Jenny Dayton)  



Friday, August 11, 2017

Surfer On The Drift

From today:

"Do you guys do things like that?" asked Trista.  "I mean, ghosts where you are most of the time, over in the Game Room?  Do you guys do things like we do?"
"Like a ghost-prom?" I asked.  
"Yeah."
"No," I said.  "Not that I know of.  But I'm going to guess there will be ghosts at your prom."

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Surfer On The Drift

From today:


Blackened, the frag oozed and pimpled and dripped and calcified and bubbled and seeped.  It looked like it might be eating into the remains of both bodies, erasure by an alien acid. 

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Surfer On The Drift

From today:

     "Everyone living right now will still die.  You're wailing and complaining over a few lost hours that won't resonate in the scheme of things.  In the coin of the realm, those hours are of a penny significance.  To me, to the universe, to the beyond beyond even my comprehension of the beyond, the murder of this world at this moment in time means nothing.  Worse has happened.  Worse is happening.  Worse will happen."

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Surfer On The Drift

From today:


I'd never surfed in more than two lanes of traffic, and never ever while also having to keep in mind a quantum buttload of pedestrians.  It was like Spock forgetting to factor in space debris or the possibility some other ship other than the Enterprise might be attempting to slingshot the sun that same exact moment.  

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Surfer On The Drift

From today:


Right before impact, Dawn wondered what kind of chips would go ok with the sandwich.  Ruffles weren't bad, but she'd always been a Fritos kind of girl.  Fritos were applicable in any instance, a solid sodium injection riding slack, even to an end-of-the-world sandwich.