Derry, Northern Ireland

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

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

I'm either brilliant or stupid...

I can't decide which best applies to me, because often the same thing I write gets comments that it's the best thing ever written or it is so bad I should never write anything ever again. And I have gotten both ends of the spectrum. When I posted Find Ray T on Triggerstreet years ago, back when it was still an interesting concept, I got lots of praise and wound up in the top five screenplays, thanks to reviewers who loved the script. I also got some people who would tear the script apart, including one guy who went through it page by page to show how bad it was.

And as I noted on here, months ago, The Lyons' Den had good reviews but then one guy so hated the book, he used one quote on a page near the end to show how bad my grasp of English grammar was. Even warned people against reading it. I'd laugh, but that's when sales dropped. So how do you know which way you're being? I like to believe I'm great and wonderful as a writer, but that could just be my arrogance or ego talking. I guess it's good that I am at least aware of that possibility.

Anyway...I've begun to think I'm caught in a series of waves that take me up to the sky in beauty and then dump on me, moments later. When I'm peaking on that wave, I write stuff that I'm still impressed with. When I'm at the bottom, nothing I do is any good. So it's better not to write in the valleys because it's just a waste of time and effort.

I've been through all of this with The Vanishing of Owen Taylor...and currently have no idea where I am in the cycle. To me, it flows and works and builds and builds. To someone else, it might come across as tedious or self-satisfied or even ignorantly confusing. It'll be interesting to find out what the consensus is.

As of now, it looks like I'll be ready to send out the "first" draft Saturday. I've input 192 pages of changes, so far, and dropped 3 pages from the total. It's going the right direction, at least, and I do think I've added a bit of clarity to the story. I've also taken out as much as I can of a quirk of mine, from writing scripts -- using dashes in place of ellipses or simple periods. Broke up some Faulkner-esque sentences by doing that, thank God. I can't stand his why should I wind up writing like him? Maybe it 's me being brilliant.

Or not.

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