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January 22, 2018:

REINVENTING A SUPPORTING CHARACTER

Bruce Kimmel Photograph bk's notes

Well, dear readers, Muse Margaret read the new pages, all 109 of them and she really enjoyed almost everything. She had a few comments, the biggest of which involved a character who appears in the second half (not the central character, who she liked a lot). The character wasn’t quite working for her and we talked about it a lot and I finally began to understand what she was saying. She wanted the character to have more character, to be quirkier and funnier. And when I finally went back and read through the character’s stuff she was quite right – I hadn’t fleshed out the character and we didn’t really know who he was or what his deal was. So I made notes about the exact moments that bothered her so I could address them. It was similar to what we went through in the first half of the book – minor but important changes to the early part of a character. Otherwise, it was just a few minor things here and there, so I was very happy with the phone call.

Prior to that, I’d gotten up at five in the morning with a slightly upset tummy. I fooled around on the computer a bit, chewed a Pepcid, and finally went back to bed and slept until eleven because the alarm didn’t go off. So I didn’t quite get eight hours of sleep but it was close.

Then I futzed and finessed – a lot of smoothing out, little additions and subtractions, but I was mostly fine with what I’d read. Then I printed out the 109 new pages and while they were printing, I wrote two new pages. Then I had them Xeroxed. I picked up some mail and then came home because Muse Margaret wasn’t at home at that point. So, I wrote about five new pages for a total of seven. Then I took a break and sat on my couch like so much fish.

I watched almost all of a very bad movie entitled Vengeance: A Love Story. I’ll finish the final ten minutes, but it’s yet another Nicholas Cage dud that is ho horribly written and directed (the director is a former stunt coordinator – go know), with lots of whispery actors that you can’t hear at all. It is completely inept, and I’ll go into more detail after I’ve finished it.

Then I had the Muse Margaret call, took all those notes, after which I went to Ralph’s so I’d have food for today, about which more later. Then I wrote about five new pages for a total of twelve, at which point I went back to look at the problem stuff. I spent about an hour completely reinventing the character, giving him more description, more humor, more quirks, cutting one bit in total that was, I believe, most of the reason Muse Margaret didn’t respond to him well, and made other adjustments, all to his first few appearances.  I’m not quite finished with that yet, but will be after I post these here notes. I’ll finish the fixes (including the other minor stuff) and try to write at least two more pages. I’ll read Muse Margaret the changes this afternoon. I was pretty happy with them and the funny thing is how quickly and easily I got it done – because they really were minor.

Today, I was supposed to have a lunch meeting, but they’re working on our street from six to six and so everyone has moved their cars to other streets and there’s literally nowhere close to park, because half the parking on other streets isn’t available because it’s also street cleaning day. So, I’m staying put and my associate will go and then tell me what it was all about. So, I’ll get up by ten, futz and finesse and then continue writing new pages. I’ll try to do six or seven, then I’ll walk up to the local branch of my bank and do some banking. I’ll come right back, eat, and continue writing. I really do want to do at least fifteen pages. As of today, if I do the two pages after posting these here notes, I’ll be in the final thirty pages or thereabouts of the book. I could, I suppose, finish by Tuesday, but it’s either Tuesday or Wednesday at the latest.

Tomorrow and Wednesday will most likely be more of the same. Whichever day I finish, I’ll go out and celebrate with whoever is free to do so – perhaps the Staitman gals or perhaps Doug Haverty. We shall see. Otherwise, I have a few meetings and meals, I still need two miraculous miracles, so please send your strongest most excellent vibes and xylophones for miraculous miracles, I think I have an opening night to go to at some point, and I know there are a couple of other things happening so hopefully I’ll remember what in tarnation they are.

Well, dear readers, I must take the day, I must do the things I do, I must, for example, futz and finesse, write, do some banking, eat, write, relax, write, and relax. Todays’ topic of discussion: What are your favorite films of Nicholas Cage? Let’s have loads of lovely postings, shall we, whilst I hit the road to dreamland, happy to have had fun completely reinventing a supporting character.

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