I got to the writing cabin fairly early this morning. Lisa Burton met me at the door wearing a green and white mini-dress with matching elf cap. “What are you doing here?”
“I work here from time to time, remember?”
“I though you were getting a refrigerator delivered today.”
“That’s tomorrow. Rather than squander a whole weekend, I decided I’d better accomplish something today.”
“And which project is it going to be?”
“Huh? Don’t worry about changing clothes. I like the festive look.”
“Oh, good. I was just about to use the hot glue gun to put tiny bells on these pumps.” She held up a pair of metallic green heels.
“Sounds like a plan. I’m going to launch Lanternfish if it’s the last thing I do.”
“Okay. I have to make your coffee, then I’ll bring you a cup. You might hear me jingling as I come down the hall.”
“I hope so. 2020 has been kind of a gloomy year and any little bit of cheer is welcome.” I marched to the writing office and could see my breath in the air. Lisa had already provided kindling and wood, so I made a fire in the fireplace before I got started.
I opened my chapter by sliding Lanternfish from dry dock into the water. It takes some time to outfit a ship this size and I needed to respect that. I used the time to define some relationships, mostly between James and Bonnie. They are always parted on these journeys, and that’s pretty realistic for the era. I decided to spend some time with them as a couple.
I also spent some time reintroducing a few other characters. The overall trilogy seems to have a cast of thousands, and I can’t expect readers to remember all of them. Since it’s still early, a line or two seems more helpful than not.
Lisa jangled into my office with coffee. Somewhere along the line she’d managed to accessorize with an enameled bracelet and necklace of holly leaves and berries.
“Where’d you get those?” I pointed to her wrist.
“Cute, huh? I found them on EBay for a steal. As a bonus, Bunny likes to chew up the boxes.”
“You’re a little tall for an elf, but your heart’s in the right place.”
She leaned in close. “I don’t have a heart. There is a hydroponic layer to keep my skin healthy.”
“I know that. It’s a figure of speech. Means you have the right spirit.”
“Thanks. You type away. I’m going to go do my nails. There are boards of Christmas nails all over Pinterest.”
“Have a good time.”
I pecked away at my project, and ended at 3200 words for the day. I like this chapter, but there’s nary a cannonade in sight. Plenty of time for fantasy sea monsters and naval warfare after they leave the harbor.
I also like the way that Serang has been up to her neck in warfare in the preceding chapters. I think it adds a sense of urgency that readers can pick up on, even though the Lanternfish crew has no idea.
Tonight is all about packing all our food into the tiny freezer and a group of old coolers. Hopefully, getting the new one delivered and installed won’t be an all day affair, but my experience with such things hasn’t been good. If this is all I manage to write, so be it.
In other news, I worked through all my critiques for the other story. My group really didn’t like my title, so I changed it. The book about Lizzie and the hat is now called Lunar Boogie. Probably jump to that one next go round.