Philip Brewer's Writing Progress


Saturday, 07 December 2002

A good day. I did a lot of different things, which makes it seem especially productive.

There's a shop called Victorian House in Mahomet (a small town about 15 minutes from Champaign) that has provided some space to the Spinners and Weavers Guild to sell some fiber products. Jackie put some yarn on sale there. She also did a spinning demo this morning.

I went along to Mahomet (to drive and help carry and move the car away from the shop so that customers could park). I went to a nearby Arby's with my laptop and spent the couple hours working on my next rewrite. ("Snare" isn't done, but I didn't want to try to get my brain right to work on it while sitting in an Arby's. So I worked on a nanotech story the local critique group had given me comments on a few months ago.)

What I started doing with the nanotech story was breaking it down by scene and noting down how each scene served the purpose of the story. That's a technique that Pat Murphy showed us at Clarion and it's really powerful for dealing with certain kinds of structural problems.

This story is one of my favorites. There's a lot of powerful stuff in it, but it doesn't quite hold together. Going through it, I was able to note down each of those powerful elements and start thinking about what needs to happen for each one to be effective in the story. There's a lot of great raw material there and I got more and more excited a I worked through it. I could begin to see the story it could be.

This afternoon I spent some time on yet another writing project, this one entirely frivolous. One story I'd had the local group critique has never quite worked as a short story. But my friend Chuck pointed out that what it wanted to be was a one-hour TV episode on one of those anthology shows like Outer Limits. He was right, or nearly right--it just might fit into a half-hour show like Twilight Zone. So, I started writing a screenplay for it.

It's such a huge waste of time, I hesitate to admit spending the time that way. But it's what I felt like doing, so I figured I might as well indulge myself.

Thomas's blog has a new (barely different) address. I've updated my links page. Even before that I finally got a link to Jason Wittman's web page up on my links page.

Thomas notes my reaction yesterday to the failing tab on the plastic lunch container and politely refrains from referring to my behavior as either quixotic or passive-aggressive. To see where this sort of thing leads, though, check out the story up on The Onion right now: "Elderly Man Silently Wages War Against Pharmacy".

Now I'm back home. My cat has climbed up on me and is lying across my wrists as I type. She complains whenever I move a hand to the mouse, so I'm indulging her by writing my journal entry, which I can do most of with just straight typing.


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