I woke this morning to a vivid, fluid landscape of my mind, a place I rarely visit and such visitations always correlate to Ben being gone from our homestead.
Ben went down to his childhood hometown in Wyoming to take care of his sister’s two children while she was off on a business trip. And it’s not like we have extensive chores that need a lot of care, but somehow it seems everything takes me a lot longer to accomplish alone than when Ben and I are working together. Actually, I’m not much of a morning person; I don’t have too much of a problem getting out of bed, but to get the fire started and breakfast cooked is a bit much for me. Long ago I didn’t really eat breakfast, I just had coffee and showered and left for work. Ben has me spoiled now, though, I have to eat a good breakfast or I’m starving by the time my workday starts. So, by the time I get up, start a fire, have my coffee, cook and eat breakfast and do chores it sees like the morning is half over.
And this morning I woke to that strange landscape. My mine took off on philosophical tangents that led me off in directions and lands so foreign that I felt I was living in one of the fantasy places I write about. Within that landscape, of course, I had all the world’s problems figured out and knew how to deal with all the negative people who would have a problem with a viewpoint different than their own. Gradually I woke up and realized I was on planet Earth with people who fervently believe in things that are not just improbable, but impossible beyond the wildest fantasies I could imagine, filled with magic and miracles so fantastic I wouldn’t even dare to write them in my novels.
That reminds me, the preliminary writing on my novel is going well. I’ve written out the characterizations for all the major characters and a rough outline of the first five chapters;the plot is moving along really well with a fluid and rapid flow. I want to do as much writing as I can this week with Ben gone – I’m not sure what Ben being gone has to do with anything, but it’s a good diversion for me to have such a plan. The deeper I get into the story, the more I realize how much work it really is, but I’m enjoying it immensely. The rough outline is the easiest and most fun part of the process, but now I have to get down to the nitty gritty of the actual work of fleshing out the characters and making the plot not just feasible, but realistic, plausible and naturalistic; which, for fantasy/science fiction, can be tough, but also critical.
This isn’t my first attempt at writing a novel. I wrote another one a few years ago that taught me a lot – mostly about all the things a writer shouldn’t try to do with a novel – and helped me move on to work on something that would be reader friendly.