I spent most of last Sunday helping a mechanic friend work on Oldest Daughter’s car. It’s a 15-year-old Ford Edge with over 200k miles, so it’s got its share of problems. The most recent was an overheating problem that her ex decided warranted a new radiator, which he said he’d take care of. We ordered the radiator from Rock Auto only to hear from the ex that he had to work this weekend so he couldn’t work on the car. Enter my friend Cecil.
I topped off the coolant (it took over a gallon and a half!) and drove it to Cecil’s place Saturday night, because he’s got an air-conditioned shop we could work in. That’s a huge plus in the 105°+ temps we’ve been dealing with down here. It didn’t overheat at all, but Cecil said it did leak a decent amount after I’d parked it.
We decided it didn’t need a radiator, but it did need new hoses, and we thought the drain plug probably needed to be replaced as well. The nearest shop that was open on a Sunday and had the hoses in stock was in Tulsa, so off we went. We took his Jeep, just because we could, even though maybe we shouldn’t have in the heat. It was an hour up and an hour back, and we were good and roasted by the time we got back to his place. But we got things fixed up and Oldest Daughter has her car back. Friday I dropped the Subie off at the shop for some front-end work.
The other day I was wrapping up some ground beef and flashed back to childhood memories of going to the store with my mom. I’m old enough and my hometown was small enough in the 70s to have real butchers in the stores. As I wrapped the meat in parchment paper before bagging it for the freezer, I remembered the brown butcher paper and twine and grease pencil markings that always accompanied a trip to the butcher counter.
I miss those trips, and I miss my mom.
The animals still seem to be missing Shadow. I was petting Sif on the back of a chair Monday, then went over to my desk. She jumped down from the chair and came over to me, declaring that she wasn’t done with the attention I’d been giving her. We spent another ten or so minutes cuddling, then she decided it was time for me to get back to work. Then again, Youngest Daughter is in the middle of a three-week summer camp, so that may have something to do with it, too.
Still didn’t get to the Buffett book, for no particular reason. I’m probably going to take that one back to the library for now and find something else.
One of the files I create when I’m working on a story is a chronology spreadsheet. It helps me keep track of the timeline, both before and during the story.
I’ve established in my paranormal story that time passes differently for the ghosts than in the living world. Keith mentions at one point that several hours have passed while he was sitting in a guard shack thinking about something. So how do I represent that in the spreadsheet? Do I show the passage of time in the living world, or do I just list events in their sequence without assigning dates to them? It probably doesn’t matter in the overall scheme of things. But I created the chronology to help me keep things in the right sequence, so I feel like I need to figure out the best way to do that.
It’s tough being a writer sometimes.
On the other hand, I’m now over 13K words into the paranormal, including 5 days of 1,000+ words. Feels good to be writing like this. Are my weekly blog posts helping me keep up regular fiction writing? Could be. It may be less the actual blog posts and more the habit of BICHOK* that I’ve formed by committing to weekly posts.
Whatever I’m doing, it seems to be working.
I’m focusing on the paranormal story right now, pushing everything else to the back burner for the time being except for the edits on In Plain Sight. I’m going to finish the paranormal, get those edits done, release both books, and then take a longer look at what I’m going to write next. That’s a topic for another post (or two).
And I think the working title for the paranormal is going to be Ghost of Innocence. Does that do anything for you?
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* – Butt In Chair, Hands On Keyboard