Tag Archives: summer fun

All’s well that ends well…maybe

We got a call last night that our granddaughter was screaming, bloated, and projectile vomiting. Her mother ran her to the emergency room.

We never heard anything until this morning, when they called to tell us they were still there. The guesses were a severe urinary tract infection, and possible appendicitis. She's not even in pre-school yet. My wife got dressed and went straight down to the hospital. There isn't much to do except get in the way, so I stayed here. They did some kind of expensive scan and confirmed the UTI. They're back home now.

I decided to grab my hat, and head for the writing cabin. I have to say, I was in a great mindset to write a tortured little girl.

Lisa, my robotic assistant, put on her Chloe outfit and tried to help. I'm afraid my mood discouraged her. She busied herself cleaning Bunny's litter box.

I finished The Playground at about ten o'clock. Doubt, the raven started demanding attention almost immediately. I've fallen for this one before, and decided to leave.

I believe endings should be short. I don't like to go on and on about things. Now I wonder if I have enough in this ending. Chloe will need a lot of healing. She's lost her doll/friend, (who was the embodiment of evil). What she has is the love of her mother and father… and a good therapist.

I could have done a better job on the doll's death scene. I thought of a heart monitor doing the whole flatline thing, but don't think I pulled it completely off. Probably needs some work.

I could have had Chloe freak out, have a relapse or do something else, but I wasn't feeling it. Her mother freaked out well enough.

The ending is making me think chapter one needs a little something. It probably does.

What I need to do is put it away to ferment. Leave it completely alone for a month. Stop letting Doubt get into my head. My critique group will have some input in a week or so. Then I can change the font and pitch, re-read it and make those assessments.

So what happens next? Last week I took an effort to promote Will O' the Wisp. This is my best one so far, and I'm not willing to let it be, not just yet. I made an additional effort to promote myself today. Something will land in blog land very soon. These are positive things I can do while The Playground settles.

I still have some short stories in mind. I'll fiddle around with those, and may release a book of them in the fall or winter. I'm not going to start another novel right away. I will, but not for some months.

There are fish to catch, and mushrooms to gather up in the forest. Those projects really take me away, and reboot the senses.

I've got four good ideas for my next novel too. This time, I'm going to try something different. I'm going to start outlining all of them. The Playground came in at about 70K words. I don't know if people will expect a bit more, or if modern humans will be grateful for a faster story. Outlining my next cluster of ideas should give me a better idea of what will deliver a novel length work.

All writers have dozens of ideas. I'm not afraid to share them with you, they are:

  • I wrote a character vignette about a year ago involving two people in Africa. Add in some witch doctors, and some man eaters and this could be a story. It probably needs evil redcoats too. Historical paranormal.
  • I wrote a vignette about a guy who wakes up in the desert and gets rescued by a talking yak. This one has an appealing personal challenge of using The Fool's Journey as a story structure. What category would it be? I have no idea, maybe dystopian/fantasy/paranormal.
  • The idea of bio-hackers and grinders appeals to me. It would take some serious research, but I see it as a science fiction piece with some Frankenstein spice.
  • The Wargler would be a fantasy about a guy who starts wars using covert methods and manipulations. He needs to be forced into doing this by some kind of bad guy. Is the world ready for a fantasy with less sword and sorcery, but more theft, manipulation, and deceit?

I'm thinking about making a few posts about my outlining process. I think my way is different than many others, and you may find it interesting. I can even include a few screenshots from past outlines. I don't have them all, but some are still around. Does this sound boring, or interesting? I always like to read about another writer's process, maybe some of you would too.

My reading has suffered, and I need to remedy that. I'm about to go on a book buying spree. I'll post about that when the time comes.

Then there is the research. I got some great alchemy suggestions from you guys a couple months ago, and those might help with one project. I have a ton of African adventure books too. I even have a copy of Frankenstein.

Right now, our granddaughter is on the mend, The Playground is a complete first draft, and I have some ongoing plans for promotion. I'm looking forward to Summer without any arbitrary deadlines. I'm sure to have more company, and won't feel like I lost valuable writing time when they come for a visit.

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Meanwhile, in the Real World

Old What’s Her Face* and I decided to head into the mountains again today. Too much blogging and publishing stuff makes Craig a dull boy. I’m sure I missed reading some of your posts today.

Last time out it was early and dry. We’ve had a bit of rain lately, followed by some sunny weather and decided to give the morels another chance. Our usual places were wash outs; not a single mushroom in sight, including the kind we don’t want.

We decided to head for a semi dangerous canyon I know of. It has avalanche danger year round, but I’ve really cleaned up there in the past. The snow was gone and the road should have been good.

Fifteen miles before we got there we saw a sign that said “Road Closed Ahead.” I assumed they meant my spot; we decided to go part way and trust to luck. This place burned about five years ago, and burns are the best places. We found one small spot that looked like it re burned last summer. We were over 7000 feet in elevation.

We wound up with a small haul, but they were great big ones. I’ve seen times when you could fill a large Gott cooler, but this wasn’t one of those times. With the weather as weird as it has been, I think we were pretty lucky. The ones we found were already dry, but that’s no problem with morels. They rehydrate in anything. You can use cream, chicken stock, beef broth, wine, whatever.

Let’s look at some pictures.

The Morel in its Natural Habitat

The Morel in its Natural Habitat

image

A Fair Haul for 2014

The Mother of all Morels

The Mother of all Morels

When I washed them, I could feel them rehydrating in my hand. I shoved them in the refrigerator for now. We’re off to Old Chicago to work on my next beer tee shirt.

The funniest thing that happened today was Old What’s Her Face eating pork skins on the way home. She got crumbs down her bra and said, “I got chicharones in my chee chees.” She then proceeded to lift up her shirt and bra to clean the crumbs out. I’m sure the oncoming traffic appreciated it almost as much as I did.

* Not my wife’s actual name

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