Revision and Recap of the Last 4 Weeks

No one warned me that revisions would lead to madness.  But it does, my friend.  It does.

I am in the process of revising the stories I wrote at Odyssey and have been doing a poor job of it.  Mostly I’ve been stumbling about adding things and then taking it out again.  Luckily, my good friend Greg has thrown me a rope by asking a few good questions.

“What are your goals for this revision?”  He suggested that I focus on one goal each time I go through the story.  (Sounds familiar, like something I remember hearing at Odyssey.)

“Why does it need to be eliminated/changed/revised/added?”  This question prompted me to ask myself why I wrote the story in the first place.  Looking back on the original vision of my story and whether I’ve achieved my goal is a good way to keep myself from going into a thousand directions while revising.

Finally…the best advice:

“Keep a narrowed focus.  The beginning doesn’t work?  What exactly about the beginning doesn’t work?”

Anyhow, back to work.  But first, here are some pictures to summarize the past four weeks in which I fell into a blackhole and did not update my blog.

Hanging out in the Texas heat…

There’s just something about the big Texas sky that makes my heart sing.

My sister was crying at her Quarter-of-a-Century Party.  ‘Course it didn’t help that I switched the number.

Met up with Odfellow Chris and his wife Dacia for a delicious dinner.

Is it a cheese tray or it it art?

Dacia’s To-Die-For cheesecake.  There needs to be a Food Network show starring Chris and Dacia: Texas Cooking with a French Twist.  The name of the show?  Steaks, s’il vous plaît.

Camped with the family in Missouri in 100 degree weather.  Here we are heading to the shuttles to ride into town and gorge ourselves at the local Chinese buffet.

There were about 100K Vietnamese camping out in Carthage and sharing 4 bath/shower houses.  Gahhh… The germaphobe in me had heart seizures and nearly died.

Back at home in Fort Worth.  Made some delicious Banh Xeo with the family.  Banh Xeo = crepes with pork, shrimp, bean sprouts and green onions.  Mmmm….

SIsters’ Night Out with the Noodle.  We consumed beers and fried pickles at Movie Tavern while ogling Ryan Gosling.  Delightful!

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Garlic Butter: No Excuses Required

In class this morning, we learned some finer points about POV.  Among other things, we learned about how 99% of the time first person is not the right choice for POV.  Too much telling and little showing.

After class Natalie and I sequestered ourselves in the library until six.  We both have a story due Wednesday morning.  And Wednesday evening–Neil Gaiman in Portsmouth! Eeee!!

For dinner, Natalie boiled artichokes and Tanith made a Mexican casserole.  We each had our own bowls of fatty delicious garlic butter to soak our artichokes in before devouring the tiny fleshy bits at the end.  Mmmm…Garlic Butter.

Dinner and Critiques

On the writing front–Fortunately, my story has finally taken shape.  Unfortunately, I had to scrap nearly 5000 words to do it.  I’m thinking this story is going to be about 6000 words, so I have about 4000 more words, give or take, until this story is complete.  Type fingers type!

This Saturday is going to be the Odyssey Barnes and Noble Slam in Nashua.  I still have to create a piece of flash fiction to read aloud.  No pressure.  None at all.

And finally, my dad, showing off his Father’s Day gift.

I think he likes his tie.