Derry, Northern Ireland

Derry, Northern Ireland
A book I'm working on is set in this town.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Psycho Kyle makes himself known

Actually, it was Brendan from "Place of Safety" beating up on me. With good cause...I guess. I don't know.

Seems Amazon's offering a competition for a new novel -- 50,000-150,000 words. If you're a semi-finalist, you get read by Penguin Books with an eye towards being published. The winner DOES get published, with a $15,000 advance. And for a couple hours, I was thinking I could get the first part of POS, the part set in Derry, done in time to submit it. Dumb to even begin to think that.

You see, the submissions are limited. Bigtime. You start submitting January 23rd, at 12:01 am eastern time and can do so until midnight, February 5th...or until they reach 5000 entries, at which time the entry process ends. It would take me until at least the 5th to get POS in workable shape, but my gut tells me they'll have that filled by 12:15 am on the 23rd.

Thing is, it took me two hours to reach that honest understanding of where the story is...because I started reading what I had and it's really only half done. 170 pages and 38,000 words, so far. And still missing large sections dealing with major events -- like Operation Motorman and Internment and the October '68 Peace Rally that turned into a Royal Ulster Constabulary riot against Catholics and the Bogside of Derry.

Well, I figured I'd been silly to even think about doing this so quickly. I don't want to turn in a novel that's half-assed and inconsistent. Had I known about this on the 6th, when they say they released the info, I'd have stood a chance, but the notice didn't appear on my Amazon author's page until today. So I was going to blow it off and plan for next year, if there is one.

Only Brendan tossed a fit, telling me I wasn't even trying. I was letting him down, again. I'd never get the story done because I kept finding other projects to work on. He'd been trying to get me to write this for so damned long it was ridiculous. And the truth is, it's almost 10 years since he first appeared by my side on that walk from the circle fort and started telling me the truth of his existence.

And he's right on every point. I have been letting the story down. Been letting him down. So I settled in and started work on it, again. I'm up to page 26, have added about 4 pages, and have laid the groundwork for a number of things to happen. And I'll keep aiming for that February 5th deadline. I don't know if I'll make it...but at least I'm making progress.

I just need to stop sitting so damned long when I get going on it. I don't think I moved from my seat for 3 hours, and then only got up because I had to pee and my throat was parched. I'm typing this blog as I stand to give my legs a chance to regain some concept of what they're meant to be doing.

And Brendan is now laughing at me. Little shit.

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