I've got 115 pages done on RIHC6v2 and I'm afraid it's gone off the rails, it's become so lost in this huge conspiracy Antony's uncovered. But taking a cue from Kyle Cicero (who uses the bartenders and waiters at his favorite gay bar in his books, getting him free drinks whenever he goes in; he seems to love Apple-tinies) I've written my one known fan into the story -- named Matt, and he's become an integral part. In fact, he's helping the story get back on track and has shifted the ending I initially seemed to be aiming for from one of "bleakly maintaining" to one of "potential and hope." Dunno why, exactly, except Antony sees Matt was being manipulated, too, and in a way that could easily have destroyed him...and feels protective of the guy, which is funny since Antony is just 23 and Matt's a couple years older. But this line popped in where Antony recalls his mother once saying he was born with a 50 year old soul, indicating he's always been older in life than he is on the calendar. We'll have to see how it works.
Listen, I know I'm not writing anything on the level of Tolstoy or Steinbeck or even Jackie Collins, here -- well, maybe better than Jackie Collins, just aimed mainly at a gay audience open to stories that hold intensely erotic confrontations -- but I still take pride in how my characters and stories develop lives of their own. I honestly don't know how that works; it just happens. Maybe I tap into something in the ether that's saying, "Hi, want to have fun? Follow me." Maybe I've been destined to write these works; Presbyterians believe in predestination, and I was raised in that faith. Maybe I'm just finally letting my id free to do as it likes after so many years of confining it to screenplays I wanted to sell (but that no one wanted to buy). I don't know. I just know when it flows and it works, when my characters are talking to me and leading along the roads of their worlds, I'm happy...even when I'm pissed off at them or they're pissed off at me.
I think Brendan senses this and accepts it and is willing to wait to see what happens next with POS. There's still so much I need to understand about the ways and mores of N. Ireland society at that time, but I'm getting there. And reality is, his book is not under the gun, so to speak, since it's a period piece so I don't need to worry about when it gets published so as not to seem outdated by changes in the world. That's happened with a couple of scripts I wrote -- one for the good even though what happened was horrendous (Hurricane Katrina helped BLOOD ANGEL fall into place), one for the bad (9/11 made DELAY EN ROUTE ludicrously outdated and I have yet to figure out how to make it work, again).
So now it's off to work, something I actually look forward to, even when I don't. Make sense out of THAT, if you will.