Today is Sunday, 15 July 2007, 2133
I am sweating like a madman.
The humidity socked us today re-alll good, and with no AC, it’s all I can do to keep from becoming a madman.
So begins rus uncut, no. 1.
Braeden awakes in tears. It is not even 10 yet, and already he finds it impossible to string together two hours of sleep without waking from the sweat that pours from his tiny brow, despite the fans above and alongside him. In this weather, none of that seems to matter.
To be perfectly honest, I have to be a little selfish and bare-allish here; rus uncut is all about me and my struggle to return to something close to my center, and unless you are the type of person who enjoyed (immensely) The Truman Show, you receive my blessing to disappear for awhile as I work through this.
You see, I am drained. Empty. Depleted. Barren. And I need to rehydrate through words. I’ve not made the time for them in these last three weeks, and as a result I have hit pretty darn near the bottom of this tank.
I go through this cycle every other year or so. I give. And give. And give. And give. But I don’t Take. I don’t nourish me. I don’t do the things required at the bottom of Maslov’s hierarchy to sustain a minimal life. It’s not that I’m martyring over here. Not that at all. It’s just that I still don’t know how to say NO, and I still believe eating is the answer to all of my problems.
So I’m on the other side of that cycle right now. I’ve got a week to go teaching at University, and when that wraps up, I’ve got me to nurture, bring back to life, take care of, love, nourish, embrace.
And I want to chronicle all that, right here.
A few hours ago, I made the decision to cancel the launch of my book, Journey to Cold Rock. I’m pained to say that the last round of reviews coming in were God-awful. It hurts tremendously to cancel the launch, but you know what? Those critics–they’re dead-on with their feedback. I’ve struggled with this all weekend: where did I go wrong? And why were the first round of reviews so much more favorable?
To answer the second question first: I believe the answer lies in not what motivated the first round of readers, but rather: what motivated the second round of readers to be so candid? It seems simple enough to me. The second rounders were holding an actual proof in their hands-cut to the size of the real book and nearly everything that comes with it. They, being so much closer to the reality of Cold Rock being published, felt a sense of duty and obligation to wave the book’s white flag and offer the stern suggestion to surrender.
The first group of readers was so close to the first draft that their response was extremely appropriate and dead-on. What I failed to do, I believe (and this addresses my first question: where did I go wrong?), was go into hiding for a good month and return to the basics of good writing: character development, dialogue, the hook and the engine, etc. I’m confident with the changes I need to make; I just need to make them.
Off for now. will be back soon enough.