Mr Sleepy

Never make plans. Never stare yourself in the mirror and say “Tomorrow, the work TRULY begins!” When you do that, it usually means you’re in trouble. The last few days for me have been mainly taken up by attempting to recover from my cold, with some gradual work on the book crammed inbetween. Dad and Linda set off for their week in France this morning, so today would be the first time in nearly a week where I’d be virtually on my own (aside from Linda’s son Tom, who both works and has an active social life, so he’s barely here). Hurrah, I thought to myself. Time to knuckle down, and truly get some serious writing done.

Unfortunately, as it turned out, I ended up waking up at 5.10 in the morning, slightly hungry and completely unable to get to sleep. I filled time by watching some TV, had breakfast, finally started to feel human, went and bought stamps for a couple of letters in the nearby village, came back to the house, and promptly started to crash into a semi-conscious fug. I lasted writing about two sentences before I slumped back upstairs into bed at about 10.15. I then blinked, and it was 11.15. I then remember getting up, wandering to the bathroom, going back to bed… and then things got a bit strange thanks to a decidedly epic dream I had- a version of a ‘New Doctor Who’ season climax involving flying aliens, saucer-shaped aircraft, and multi-dimensional landscapes intersecting with Washington D.C.

I finally woke up four hours later, with only an hour or so of grey sunlight to enjoy before the day got dark once again. I’ve at least spent the last few hours planning out the next few days, and arranging some of the character threads of the novel together so they’ll be easier to work with. The novel is still in shaky shape, but is now running nearly two chapters shorter than it was- I’m just worried that certain structural things I was doing in earlier versions aren’t going to work now. What I’m going to try and do is put all of that out of my head, and concentrate on the actual, nuts-and-bolts writing new stuff that needs to be written. Once I get a ‘new rough draft’, I can print this bastard out, read it, and I’ll have a much better idea of where the dead patches are. I’m slightly paranoid about throwing the baby out with the bathwater, but I want this to be a book that moves quickly, and doesn’t grind to a halt. It’s supposed to be a romp, gawd-dammit.

If my paranoia, insecurity and other neuroses allow it, I would like to have a functional version of the new structure of the book by the end of next week, so I can start doing some really aggressive rewrites over the Christmas period. I sometimes doubt whether I’m cut out for this- but despite all the problems, I read through the end of the novel a couple of days ago- and it rocks. It’s a mess, it needs a tremendous amount of work, but the damn thing rocks like a Metallica album, and if I can actually get it to work, I can rest assured that, at the very least, nobody is trying to do the kind of things I’m trying to pull off here. Of course, I may later discover that there’s a very good reason nobody else is trying to do it. Hey ho…

I miss George. I haven’t seen her since last Saturday… and I really miss her now. Maybe it’s just being on my own, but I can’t wait to get back to her and, despite all the ridiculous nonsense awaiting me in the future, I also can’t wait to get this next phase of my life going. It may be scary, but something tells me it’s going to be worth it.

Dreamtime in Lake Jackson

It must be something about significant times in my life- I end up having vivid and head-scratchingly weird dreams. During last night’s surrealism, I was having a phone conversation with the late Douglas Adams, and he was talking about various endangered species such as the Kakapo Parrot of New Zealand, which is mentioned in his book Last Chance To See, and I brought up the book– and then, there was an awkward pause. That was the point where I remembered (in the dream) that I was talking to Douglas Adams at a point in time before he’d actually written the book, hence the extreme confusion and awkwardness. Quite why my dreams are so multi-layered and have such insane levels of internal logic I don’t quite understand. But, at the least, it’s making my night life interesting.

The packing is proceeding at a gradual but enthusiastic pace. Tomorrow is another one of our intensive days, when George is off work and we try to get as much done as possible. By the end of Wednesday, this place will be largely empty, and life will enter another phase.

Tick… tick…. tick….

Best Laid Plans…

I think all this mulling over of New Who and my love of stories and how I’m feeling that I don’t want to watch Season Three simply because I know it’ll mostly annoy the hell out of me (Thanks to various quotes from Russell T. Davies, the fact that the show’s going to be mostly Earthbound (and presumably largely set on council estates) again, the new companion’s four-strong family, and the general patronising attitude of “Oh no, we’re not really sci-fi- we’re more emotional, more popular and BETTER than that…”) is starting to get to me. I had a dream last night where the new crew of the TARDIS turned out to be the Doctor and about twenty five people- who were then joined by even more, including the Peter Davison version of the Doctor, and Batman villain the Joker dressed in Wild West garb! Plus, the chameleon circuit on the TARDIS had started to slightly work again, but was making the exterior look like a rough, shack-like approximation of a Police Box constructed from old driftwood. Then, it all ended with the Doctor checking BBC1, and finding out that the episode had actually ended about twenty minutes previously. My brain is a strange place to be, sometimes.

Elsewhere, the atmosphere of propulsive “Oh my god, put everything in cardboard boxes!!” energy has been slightly derailed by the fact that the move of stuff on Wednesday isn’t actually happening now until next Wednesday. An organising mess-up has meant that nobody’s available to help, so we’ve actually got a bit more time than we expected, and in a weird sort of way I’m actually glad. We can’t relax and go “Hey…”, but it should give us enough time to get most of what we were aiming to do actually done. The tension is a little less, and we’ve also found the intriguing free-ad website Gumtree that might be an aid in getting someone to fill our place.

Getting used to bare white walls again is going to be hard, though. George and I like to imprint our personality on a place, and soon there’s only going to be traces left. We can cope with it- it’s just going to be very strange. Here’s hoping that this doesn’t have to last for too long…