Tunnels, Novels, and Pajamas

Right now, my novel looks like this:

A long dark tunnel
A long dark tunnel, courtesy of Jon Shave via Flickr

I know, soon, there will be that exciting moment where my middle connects with my end, and the light floods in, and I’ll be able to see my feet before my face, and I’m itching for that because I can barely see a thing now.

Are we there yet?

No?

OK, back to it.

In the meantime, I write, and I write, and I write. Some of it is good. Some of it is not good but is salvageable. Some of it will be buried in the back courtyard where our building keeps the garbage pails and where, at night, it’s best to throw your garbage at the pail from a great distance to avoid the rats.

I’m still off Twitter and Facebook, but I can’t hide away from the world for the whole month. I witnessed a friend’s beautiful wedding this weekend (yes, I got teary!), and I’m starting this new thing where I try (*try*) every week to do something out of my comfort zone that’s somehow related to writing and books—because, so you know, my comfort zone involves a pair of pajamas, a Toblerone, a book I already know I like, and reality TV in the background… and the only person allowed in the zone is E. (More so if he brings me a Toblerone.)

I’m shy. But last night I went to the SCBWI Metro professional series panel where I heard two great YA editors give presentations—and though I do know already about voice and plot, I do get amped up hearing talks and tips about it. I believe you can never learn too much; you can always push yourself to become a better writer, MFA and book in hand or not. At the same time, I wonder if maybe I should be doing something else not also geared toward new writers. Where is that post-MFA, post-book#1, pre-book#2 place for writers to, I dunno, be writers and talk about writing without the focus on submission procedures and agents in there too?

I haven’t found it. And if it exists I have a feeling I can’t go there in pajamas.

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