So, I had this post planned out where I was going to spend the whole time bitching about how the new NaNoWriMo site is broken and hideous and it’s completely killed my desire even to participate, and…
…but I’m not gonna write that post, because I don’t want to just sit here soaking in negativity.
Then I thought I’d write about the monthly question (which I haven’t even looked at in ages, lol) only it turns out I really don’t have anything to say about this month’s optional question. So instead I shall flounder about for something to say.
I haven’t really been doing much writing lately. I mean, I try, but I keep failing to get much done. Not because I have no drive to write and not because I’ve hit a wall in what I’m writing, but because it’s just too freakin’ hot. I mean, today’s October 1st (pre-writing) and it was over 90° today! (Which is over 32° for those of you living in civilized countries where you learned metric everything instead of this backwards place. Are we, like, the only country in the world that hasn’t gone metric yet? (Although, I have to say, “90” sounds a lot more impressively awful as a temperature than “32” does. So that’s one small something to be said for Fahrenheit…))
And no, I don’t live in a tropical area where that’s normal. When I was a kid, October would have been in the 50s or 60s. Maybe 70s if I was a particularly warm fall. But those days are long gone. And yet some people still deny climate change. Ugh.
Anyway, my body has basically overloaded on hot weather, as far as I can tell, and is violently insisting that any, say, contact between two parts of my body (arm and side, for example) is being interrupted by a frying pan just pulled out of the fire. Makes it very hard to find a position to sit in to write that doesn’t end up being brutally uncomfortable. In consequence of which, I haven’t been able to get much writing done. But a cold front is supposed to move through Wednesday night (or was it Thursday morning) and the rest of the ten day forecast is much more seasonal, so maybe I’ll be able to start writing again. And sleeping through the night without being woken up by feeling like I’m lying on top of a stove.
It’s a pity that I can’t write for such annoyingly external reasons, because my current story is going pretty well. My half-pantser/half-plotter method sometimes means I end up with a convoluted mess with an entirely unstable tone, but sometimes it means that as I’m going along I have a terrific idea that ties everything together and fills in holes I had in my plan up until that moment. I had one of those “aha!” moments just the other day; the main plot of the piece is about a journalist writing a story about the disappearance of a fellow journalist, who the police won’t go looking for, and having no other way to go about it, he ends up investigating the story she had been working on, about the thirty year anniversary of an actor’s defection. (This is set in 1984, btw.) So, I knew all along that it was in some way because of that story that she disappeared, but I didn’t know quite why, but then a random little detail I threw in about some of the other research the journalist was doing into the defection told me exactly what the cover-up was that the first journalist had stumbled onto (or that someone at least thought she had stumbled onto) that made her a target.
I’m still left with the nagging question of “so did they get her, or is she in hiding somewhere, and if they got her, is she still alive, or did they kill her?” It’s a hard question to answer. I tend to write light, fluffy stuff, so part of me just wants to say “yeah, it was a narrow shave, but she managed to get somewhere safe” but part of me is saying “the journalist’s story is going to have more impact if she was captured and/or killed, so that the exposé can get the crooked politician behind the cover-up impeached.” See, it’s not set in the real 1984, but an alternate, slightly dystopian one. Like, in the previous story that this is a sequel to, I had an editor tell the journalist that unlike the man who owned the magazine, he wasn’t a “rabid” liberal, because “if it weren’t for the censorship and the martial law, I’d quite like President Reynolds.” It’s that kind of a dystopia, you know? Not so far removed from reality that it’s unimaginable for it to happen (the martial law having first been declared after the attempted assassination in 1981, which I figure would have happened regardless of who was president, since it wasn’t in the slightest bit about Reagan’s politics) but still just off enough that we get jarring statements like that from someone who claims to be at least somewhat politically opposed to the administration.
I might do a halfway between them solution, where she was captured by whichever government agency was stalking her, but a whistleblower-type inside the agency had protected her from any serious negative consequences. Dunno. I’ll have to see how it feels when I get there, I guess…
…only who knows when I’ll be able to get there if things don’t cool off first.