Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Of Bookish Dreams and Spring

via Pixabay
A warm spring wind is blowing through our open doors and windows. Today is a day for short sleeves and bare feet--for lying around and celebrating a chase for words up until midnight last night. A day for listening to Gettys on the way to teaching and promising the kids prizes for games at class next week.

It's a day for the largesse of spring. A day that makes me remember Aslan's joyous run through the town in Prince Caspian. A day to buy a couple of used copies of Shakespeare (Henry V and Hamlet) and dream of reading them this summer. A day to celebrate later with some of The Greatest Showman after a month of Camp NaNo.

It's a day to forget winter and gray skies.

Sis and I watched The Greatest Showman twice on Friday--once riding out to friends who owned a copy and singing the songs all the way home. Once with a copy from the library. I'm still mulling. I want to tumble out a bunch of thoughts, but I need to mull just a little longer while it digests, and then I'm hoping to bring an article to the blog. (Message me if you watched it and want to discuss or fangirl?)

In my reading time, three Yorkshire children are bringing a garden alive--pale green points in rich earth, a fox that lifts its face to be petted, and a saucy red robin seeking for ego-stroking. I'm also reading about a talking bear in London. I plan to see the movie version of Paddington later in May (I haven't seen it yet) but a friend said to read the books first, and I'm so glad I did. Paddington bear is the most precious smol luv on this planet. He came from Darkest Peru because his Aunt Lucy went to a home for retired bears, and he spends his time on various adventures that all come out all right. Like Pooh, Paddington has no adversary (at least in the first book). His adversaries are circumstances and mistakes. His sweet mournfulness when he encounters disappointing facts and sweet-hearted solutions to his own accidents simply warm the heart. I can't wait to read Paddington to children someday.

Last night, in company with a peppy soundtrack (which is the equivalent of Red Bull for tired writers) I closed in on the final April goal for the War of Loyalties sequel. After breaking down the goal into daily counts, it was actually hard to hit the daily target, but I had a swing day every week which made for 6 days of writing with Sundays off. I hit 50,000 words a couple of minutes before midnight. Most of the month was revising what I had already written, or rearranging scenes, but some of the scenes were new. All in all, it was satisfying--cutting a lot of flubber, improving plotlines, and fighting away on a second draft. I'm still not sure if I'm hitting the cohesive plot I need to hit, but I'm telling myself that this is book two, and I need to sit down and fight it out. I'm hoping to send out the first chapters to some beta readers in the next month and get the invaluable outside perspective that always tells me if I'm on the right track. If I can, I'd like to have a good, solid draft by the end of the summer. If I write the second draft and it's still not solid enough (sometimes weaving big books takes several attempts) then...I'll keep trying. 

How did Camp NaNo go for you? What are your favorite books to read when the winter gives way to spring?

PS. One more review needed to help us cross War of Loyalties into double digits for reviews! Want to be a Samwise? Check out War of Loyalties and leave a couple of sentences about your honest thoughts on Amazon!

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