Me, Myself, And The Catskills

My father and my sister came up to the Catskills with me on Sunday. They returned home to Pennsylvania this morning. So for some weeks to come… I am home alone in the Catskills.

[Windham, New York. Photo by me, September 8, 2019.]

There’s lots to do around the house. I was busy earlier. That is why this post comes now – in the late afternoon, New York time.

I hope there will also be plenty of time to try to put the finishing touches to THAT manuscript.

I have also been paying attention for the last few weeks on my new Twitter to the #writingcommunity hashtag. I do it partly because I am intrigued by it mostly because I had previously never been convinced there is really something called a “community of writers” out there. Why? I posted this in 2018:

The term “passive-aggressive” may well have been coined by someone observing a jealous author reviewing another’s work. Having years ago encountered some of my uncle’s “fellow” writers, I never forgot what pompous and self-important individuals some were. I recall overhearing more than a few chats that went a lot like this:

Mike: “I read Lynn’s new story after she asked for input. I don’t know where to start. I’ll be nice, though. But God…”

Uncle: “She’s alright. She’s better than me in lots of ways. I can’t spell for s-it. Sylvia always tells me that.”

[Later, after Mike had gone home.]

Uncle [to me]: “Known him years. He’s an okay guy, but can be such an a-shole. She writes fine, better than him. I think he’s always just pissed off she’d never sleep with him.”

I’m also detecting a bit on #writingcommunity Twitter that all that may have changed in that latter department is that, uh, today – unlike the 1980s-90s – there is, well, Twitter:

That said, I do see value in #writingcommunity Twitter. My uncle – a HarperCollins and others published crime novelist – would have, I suspect, LOVED it. As we scroll, we are prompted to think and we may also discover we don’t do what “everyone else” does:

I haven’t used a paper notebook since college. I don’t think I have even written anything lengthy longhand since the (pre-computer) Clinton administration. My writing is all tapping on keyboards: I hoard Word documents and iPhone Notes.

Having replied to that one on Twitter itself, I noticed some others… which I thought I’d address here on the blog:

I might have ideas. But once the book is optioned, I have probably conceded that decision to those who will produce the film. If I had any say, I’d prefer a main cast few had ever heard of… because everyone deserves a big break. 🙂

I don’t use Goodreads. And I have been reading books since – alas – long before the existence of spreadsheets. That said, reading is, I believe, not just about enjoyment, totaling up how many you have read, or even about knowledge.

Books we own become treasures of a sort. They form as well a record of our lives:

[A couple of my Catskills bookshelves. Photo by me, September 9, 2019.]

I will say also if I see a book on a shelf somewhere and I can’t remember having read it, it must not have been worth reading.

I don’t kill anyone. If death comes on a page, it happens as a consequence of the story.

That moment when the manuscript is complete enough to PRINT out a paper copy. I print only that one copy. It is then I find I first truly feel, thanks to seeing it in three-dimensions, that I have actually written the novel.

Romantic historical fiction…

…and how’s it going?: I may be about… TO LOSE IT! LOL!

I don’t think as a kid I ever dreamed of being anything work-wise.

How does a writer NOT do so? I don’t feel you can dream it all up out of thin air…

[Photo by me, Catskills, New York, September 9, 2019.]

You are as a writer almost surely borrowing from personal experiences, or from those you know, even if you fail to realize it.

Previously I posted about it on here, and if I was then using them, Instagram and Twitter.

[From my desk. Catskills, Windham, NY. Where this post was just written. Photo by me, September 9, 2019.]

After those social media mentions, I may have had a drink.

Drink or not, I also sat pondering “my achievement.” Gradually I started to feel increasingly sad and empty. Finally, I ended up wondering: “Dear God, what do I write next?” 🙂

I hope you are having a good day, wherever you are. 🙂