be sure to check out Joan's latest on her website:

be sure to check out Joan's latest on her website: (usually she updates her blog every Sunday evening but she can and will surprise you) **Special Note: all of Joan's archives are now up--almost ten years of 'bitter girl.' As Joan says, go wild!**

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

No Beach To Walk On

This was the title of my aborted fourth book, stolen from a line in a Star Trek episode, which was going to be about a really bad hurricane that hits Palm Beach County directly--before and then the aftermath. Today it becomes part of a reason I aborted the beach walk--the surf was too high, there was all this trash all over the place, there were storms north and south of me, and finally I just didn't feel like doing it. The beach goes downhill every year around this time, so it was no surprise.
I walked for a few hours at the mall, but this got to be a drag also so now I'm home. I'm almost half way done with the sequel so that's coming along nicely as well.
The reason I never finished this book is because after the third one didn't get picked up, I became so dispirited about the whole thing, I lost interest in it. Plus I finally had found a decent job and I was learning about financial markets and all this so it kind of just went away. I knew the third book needed a rewrite but how to do it eluded me until I got the idea for the subplot and then it hit me--what had been missing in the book.
One day after I had gotten fired from my last job, I was sitting around and feeling sorry for myself so I decided that I needed a break. So I went on YouTube to look at some music videos that some other people had done that amused me. Then in one, I saw some original artwork that I didn't recognize, so I wrote down that website. From that website, I found a link to another website that had some fan fiction posted. I read two of them and they were O.K.--nothing to write home about--but then there was one story that seemed promising and it just stops, right in the middle of it, as if whoever was doing it simply lost interest in it or died. There was one chapter that I felt really needed a rewrite, so I decided to see what I could do with it. I played with it for a few days until I felt like I had gotten it into shape.
But then I realized I had made a mistake and it still wasn't right. So I started again and this time it came out pretty well. Then I tried to write to the people most closely associated with all this and no dice--the e-mail was either returned or wasn't answered. Then I was walking at the mall one day and it hit me--this was perfect for the third book. So I started work on it the next day and the rest is history.
I guess it just goes to show that you never know what you're going to find when you start looking around on the Internet--and that ideas germinate in devious ways. This I've stolen also--it's from Robert Heilbroner's Worldly Philosophers book--something else I heartily recommend. Stealing can be very habit forming, it appears.
But the most difficult part of this transition has been the self-esteem issues associated with not having a regular job where I show up every day. All these years, for good bad or indifferent, I was able to support myself in the manner to which I have become accustomed. Now, I'm working at home and I'm happy--instead of working somewhere else and being miserable. But part of me was tied up with what I was doing and that's been what's hardest to get away from.
Were there honeys at the mall today? No, that's not a rhetorical question and I'm glad I asked me that. There were--but this is a subject for another post.

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