An Update on the State of Things
Posted on October 29, 2019 Posted by John Scalzi 17 Comments
It’s going well. I’m at the point where the writing is done and all that’s left is the typing, but there’s a lot of typing to be done between now and Friday.
I’m also at the stage where the issue is not the plot, but the sequencing; I wrote a chapter last night and then woke up early this morning and the first thought I had in my head was I need to chop that chapter in two and add another chapter in the middle. A chapter I had already intended to write, fortunately, not a whole new chapter I need to invent. At this point in the writing, these are better problems to have than, say, the ones where you’re left thinking I don’t know how to end this book. I know how to end this book, I’m happy to say.
To give you another indication of where I am on things, last Friday the back of one my molars just yeeted itself right out of my mouth and my thought on that was, well, that’s not getting fixed until after the book is done.
(Don’t worry, it’s not painful, it was just an old filling. And I have an appointment a week from now.)
Anyway, here’s Smudge.
Back to writing for me.
Now I know where guitar picks come from.
A temporary crown is pretty quick: They basically squeeze caulk in your mouth and cure it with UV.
If you’re in any pain, at least do that.
I don’t know why. But I imagine the notion of keeping the book in one’s head and having to insert pieces and/or move stuff around for pacing or clarity or whatever reason would be frustrating and tedious. I’d also worry about the sequence being off and having errors in the story.
You do the work of writing the darn thing and then have to mess around with it. But that just may be my ADD talking. The idea of keeping it in my head and playing around with it is….daunting.
But that’s why I’m not a writer….
What is the difference between writing and typing? I mean, not in the sense that they are the same thing (this isn’t a Truman Capote question), but in the sense that aren’t you typing while you’re writing? How does typing extend past the end of writing?
Ow, just thinking about your molar coming apart. Happened to me in NYC on a week long vacation, also like you, old work that came apart, no pain, until Dr. went to work on it. He glued my cheek to the crown, hurt to fix that.
But I understand having the book written but not typed. It is all worked out in your head, now you just have to transmit those thoughts to the rest of the world. Good luck with all the typing!
Hm, already looking forward to my re-read of the series just before The Last Emperor :)
Adding my ‘thank you’ for the previous transcript. Easier to read/pick up where left off @ work. It must have been how my computer formatted it, with no line breaks or paragraphs, just a wall o’ text. Ow!
I presume Master Smudge is #occupylaundrybasket.
If your dentist’s agenda resembles the one of my dentist, you better make that appointment ASAP if you want this to be fixed before Christmas.
I’m reading this in my dentist office for exactly the same thing. Kind of freaky. This is either fate, kismet, or a short story premise.
Interesting, though I must admit I share Pjcamp’s confusion about your distinction between writing and typing. Unless by “writing” you mean plotting, including sequencing. Best of luck with it all in any case!
I’m glad the book is coming together nicely and look forward to the finished product! Also, that may be the first time I saw someone over the age of 16 use “yeet” in a nonironical sense, so you got that going for you, which is kind of nice.
Naively, I had understood the « writing is done » comment as in « it’s all scribbled on paper with a pen or pencil ». Only by reading comments above did I realise it could mean that it is all plotted and outlined in details in your head…
In any case – great news, I can start anticipating the re-read of the 2 previous instalments!
Glad to hear that you feel the book is coming together nicely for you, though I don’t think my sanity would survive skating that close to a deadline. My brain just doesn’t work that way.
Yikes on the molar – what is this, the third? Fourth? Seems you’ve had a series of suddenly-disintegrating molars over the past year or so. Makes me wonder if possibly you are a teeth-grinder in your sleep; I have a sibling who has to wear a plastic appliance that’s a bit like a boxing mouth-guard when they go to bed to prevent grinding their teeth in their sleep. I hope you are able to get a fast and non-painful repair to your latest dental catastrophe.
Please maintain that 5/2/1 rule as you approach the end of the current writing marathon, and take good care of yourself. We are all looking forward to reading TLE, but we’re also looking forward to the books that will follow – which means we hope you will stay healthy to write them.
Year and a half ago two old fillings broke. One just broke half an old molar off while eating nachos. I thought, game over if things are just breaking off. Old fillings had shelf life that actually comes to a point that matters. Good luck with that.
Smudge is looking so grown-up and handsome!
Let us pause a moment, and imagine a world without modern dentistry. Yikes!