Saturday, January 14, 2006

The First Week

Those readers who’ve been through TOO DARN HOT with me know that it takes me awhile to get on my regular schedule of writing five days a week.

And the fumbling was true this past week.  I wrote on three days.  One non-writing day was because I hadn’t slept enough the night before.  The other, which began on Thursday was when I tried to back up to my CD drive and it wouldn’t take the new pages.  So Friday I spent dealing with this…I didn’t mean to get so involved and I didn’t mean to get on the phone with support, but I did. 

I have always been able to backup to a CD-RW so that it took my additions.  I’d get a question that would say: There is already a Chapter One on the disc do you want to over write it?  And I’d click yes.  Simple.  Now suddenly I couldn’t do it.  It was saying the disc was a read-only.  It made me insane.  The support person said he never heard that a CD-RW would do what I wanted to do.  WTF?  He said it was my software.  I knew this couldn’t be true but I tried it with another program.  Same thing.  Finally I backed up on a flash drive.  But I woke up this morning thinking about it, wondering what I could do. 

What has this got to do with writing?  Everything. It ruined my Friday work day.  Yes, I’m compulsive about a thwart.  Why couldn’t I write and deal with it afterwards?  Because.

Even so, I have two main characters and wrote 13 pages this week.  A pretty skimpy output for me.  But considering that I have no idea what this book is about and who these people are, not bad.

For anyone just beginning to read this blog, I’ve said before that when I start I know who the protagonist is, the place, and who gets murdered.  I never know who the murderer is until the characters tell me.  I don’t write outlines because I would find that boring.  I want to be surprised.

I may have taken the surprise factor too far.  This time I started knowing nothing.  Those little pieces of paper with titles on them are leading me into a story.  It’s scary but it’s also fun.  I hope next week I’ll get at least four days work done.  The Golden Globes are Monday night so I’ll get to bed later than I usually do, but I’ll let myself sleep later and I’ll sit down at my desk later.  Now that’s really scary. And Friday, if a good movie opens, I’ll have to go.  That means driving for an hour as our local theater doesn’t have matinees except in the summer.  So that inteferes with work. I did this all through TDFH and TDH, except with TDH I had to give up the Friday movies at some point so I could make my deadline. And I did.

But now I don’t have a deadline, which is one more scary thing.  Still, it’s freeing if I don’t think of the financial end of things.  I’ve been used to selling a new book on 100 pages, but I don’t know if I should try that with this one.  I guess by the time I get to 100 I’ll know more and if I think my agent can sell it.  On the other hand, it might be nice to have a whole book for her to shop around.  Of course, maybe she’ll hate it.  Stop it, Sandra.  Stay in the moment.

And this moment, or the next, is going to be about me reading a novel. A MILLION LITTLE PIECES.  Just kidding.



Anonymous said...

Sandra, that same thing with rewritables keeps happening to me--it happens a lot with one particular CD. If I reboot my computer and try again, saving usually works that time. My husband (who teaches computers) says he thinks using Windows for saving may be the problem. He'll be putting Nero on our computer (which we had on the old one and unfortunately seemed more complicated to use).

I've got several CDs I use as backups, just like with floppy disks in the past--well, I had MANY of those as backups. But when one CD starts acting too funky, I start saving my stuff on a new one.

Rob Gregory Browne said...

Sandra, if you have the ability to check your mail via the web, it might be possible to store a copy of your book on your ISP's webserver in your email account.

You just send a copy to yourself as an attachment and make sure that the mail service keeps a copy of your "sent" pages. The attachment will stay there until you're ready to delete it.

Rob Gregory Browne said...

Oh. And another solution is to use a USB hard drive.