It took [checks watch] oh, just about ten months to write Chapter I of Above the Circle of the Earth (ACE). That’s about nine months longer than I wanted, but, like I mentioned in my last post, it seems like 2020 dried up most of my “creative juices” (ew). Now though, after a frenzied spate of almost incessant typing, I’ve got about 8,500 words I call Chapter I. Of Half-Remembered History. (That title might change, but that’s what it is right now!)
I see bits and pieces falling into place, and I’m growing my “outline” (which isn’t really an outline so much as a loose collection of concepts): Chapters II through XX should fall into place without a hitch, right? When consolidating ideas, I love learning how to acknowledge various “lanterns” that I hung in prior chapters (or entire books). Sometimes, the results still surprise me.
In order to complete Chapter I, I referred back to books I and II quite frequently: had to make sure I remembered things correctly! As I read various passages, I realized something: this is a pretty cool story! Maybe I shouldn’t say that out loud? Too late! I really wish I knew how to convince others to give it a try, but generally speaking, self-promotion just ain’t my thing.
Anyway, just because, here’s another brief chunk from Between the Lion & the Wolf:
“Kalas, do you trust the Creator?” she demanded.
“I do,” he hesitated. “I did. I thought I did. I…I don’t know.”
“Because he’s repurposed that which he’s allowed you to enjoy? Because he’s permitted this tragedy? Because things stopped going your way?”
“Nanësra, things stopped going my way when a devil-wolf buried a knife between my father’s eyes! When another ripped the life from my mother! When others wrecked my town!”
“We roam the detritus of a broken world, Kalas: instrument of prophecy or not, why should you receive exemption from its thorns and thistles?”Excerpted from Between the Lion & the Wolf, Chapter XVI.3.
All right, just because I finished Chapter I doesn’t mean I should rest easy! I know where Kalas & co. need to go next, but it’s a mystery knowing how they’ll get there!
Totally unrelated-to-writing stuff
2020 did remind me about something: I love getting outdoors! Whether it’s fishing, camping, hiking, or all three at the same time, I intend to do more of that throughout 2021. I can’t remember if I said anything about it in a prior post, but some friends and I spent a weekend in Great Smokey Mountains National Park. (One of those friends is an avid—and accomplished—photographer.) Three nights in a hammock, about eighteen miles of trails (and twice as many stream crossings—most barefoot!), and herds of rutting elk surprisingly disinterested in people. Maybe I won’t get back to Cataloochee for a while, but I will get outside. Somewhere. And soon.