Wednesday, June 29, 2005

I Can't Believe It

The damn thing is finished.  Think of all that we’ve been through.  And now it’s finished.  Tomorrow I print it and mail it to my editor.

And then…..he reacts….he sends it back with his suggested changes.  It’s not finished.

But for me…on this night and for the next week or so…that thing is done. 

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

It's June 28th, 2005

My publication day.  The big non-event.  Don’t believe me?

My day so far:  Got up, ate the usual breakfast. Read part of the NYT’s. Gave one cat her pills.  Cleaned the litter box. Made the bed. Got dressed.  Came into my study and began working on this book that you’ve heard so much about.

Tonight? The usual. Regular dinner.  Ball game.

No call or anything from my editor.  But there may be a good reason for that.  Yesterday I made a huge fuss about the title.  I didn’t want to use the one we’d settled on.  He was not pleased.  Some tart emails back and forth.  Then a phone conversation.  He made a strong case for the title.  I gave in.  Still, I don’t think he’d be too inclined to wish me anything today.

My agent is in France so no word from her.  Even if she was in NYC I wouldn’t hear from her about it being Pub day.  Listen to what I’m telling you: Non event.

I think I’ll finish this book tomorrow.  Then I have to print it out.  And get it the hell out of here.

The title is: TOO DARN HOT

Saturday, June 25, 2005

On and On

End of another week of this line editing.  Lousy mood.  Tomorrow is a day off but it won’t be enough.  Still, I’ll entertain myself by reading THE BURNING GIRL-Mark Billingham.

Monday it’ll all start again.  If I finish next week I’ll be amazed.

What will tonight be like?  We’re angry and tired.  We have the Yankee/Mets game. We have our dinner from the great take-out place that opened about a year ago.   We have a movie.  At least we won’t have to speak.

Why didn’t I get a dessert? 



Friday, June 24, 2005

It Never Ends

That could mean a lot of things.  And it does. The rewrite goes on and on.  And the rewriting of my dialogue by my in house editor continues no matter what I say or do.  But what I’m really referring to is the title of the next book.

I thought I had it.  I thought they were lyrics from a song. Now I’ve discovered that it’s the title.  So what? you say.  My last series used song titles tricked up. I don’t want to go near that again.

Now I’ll have to argue with my editor on Monday.  And I don’t have a replacement. Maybe I’ll find one this weekend, but the way things have been going I have my doubts.




Tuesday, June 21, 2005


I finally got the title for the book I’m working on.  This is a great relief.  As I’ve said I’ve never been in this spot.  I almost always have a title before I begin.  But here I am halfway through the final rewrite and I only had the title come to me today.

And my editor and the janitors love it.


State of Emotional Health

I feel I may go insane working on this book.

Sunday, June 19, 2005

Saturday, June 18, 2005


"Rewriting is like scrubbing the basement floor with a toothbrush."

Pete Murphy

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

The Irritating Line Edit

Started this on Monday…the line edit, that is.  Although I don’t take everything that’s suggested by my first reader (I don’t have a second reader) she’s very helpful.  She’s also irritating, annoying and a pain in the ass.  So why do I let her do this?  Because ultimately she helps me make my book better.

She catches things I don’t see because I’ve been too close.  She questions things I’ve tried to get away with. 

I have one rule.  Don’t touch my dialogue.  Does she adhere to that?  No.  She tries to get  around it by suggesting dialogue above mine.  I pay no attention.  Mine is better.

Do I enjoy this process?  Yes and no.  So far (I’m on page 103 of 500) we haven’t had a screaming fight.  Perhaps we’ve grown up? 

There are about 400 pages to go.  I’ll keep you posted on the maturity level.

Monday, June 13, 2005


"There is no royal path to good writing; and such paths as exist do not lead through neat critical gardens, various as they are, but through the jungles of self, the world, and of craft."

Jessamyn West

Sunday, June 12, 2005

Rules Be Damned

For all my rules and good intentions, the big talk didn’t go too well.  First reader liked the book a lot.  But then she dared to make suggestions and criticise which led to arguments, then sulking.  It is a process from hell.

Tomorrow starts real editing and by nightfall, if things go as usual, we won’t be speaking at all.

Meanwhile, I have no title for this book.  This has never happened to me before.  I need one soon.  Like yesterday. 

Today is my last day of reading, watching the Yankees do who knows what, and generally enjoying myself for about the next two weeks.  And then I will hand it to my….oh, no.  I think I’ll stay in the day.

Saturday, June 11, 2005

The Big Talk

First reader has finished.  She likes it.  But now we go over the novel with her questions which she’s written on a yellow pad.  I’ve yet to see that and I fear it.  I know there will be pages and pages.

I’m trying to get myself in a mood that isn’t defensive.  Not easy.  I tell myself to simply listen.  I don’t have to do anything she says.  Who does she think she is anyway?

Not a good attitude.   I am taking a deep breath.  Here we go.


Friday, June 10, 2005

The Reading Continues

My first reader is still at it.  A death disturbed life and so everything has been delayed.  The reader will resume today.

Probably the BIG TALK will happen tomorrow.  Then I’ll start the third and final draft on Monday.

Meanwhile I’ll tidy up my work room.  I think I’d rather write.

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

2nd Draft

I just finished printing it out.  And now my first reader is reading it. 

Panic grips my heart.