Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Day 26 of the Golden Coffee Cup: Crichton

Here we have an elegant high five from the late Michael Crichton.

Michael wrote many evocative books and was a YA author to me because every teenager I've ever known has read his books. Let's just call it cross-over appeal. Anyway, Micahel wrote the Andromeda Strain, a book I read back in 1979 or so. This story is a riveting disaster, and, in a big way, it forever turned the alien invasion story up on a tippy corner.

Good stuff, folks, and an inspiration to me. I create description dense worlds because Mr. Crichton took the time to write complicated, fully-realized stories. I'm going to miss those "alien invasions" and "dinosaurs gone amok" moments -- really going to miss them.

Here are some most excellent journeying thoughts from Michael:

I think people put too much emphasis on the "idea" behind a story, anyway. First of all, there isn't just one idea in a story, there are lots of ideas. And second, an idea by itself isn't worth much until you do the work necessary to get it down on paper. And in the course of doing the writing, the idea often changes. It's similar to the difference between having an idea for a building, and actually constructing the building. The building often turns out differently from the original plan or intention.

Yah, pretty much. Creation is about the work. Real creators are putting in the hours and that's just the way it works.

Here's another little bit from Michael: I experience a lot of doubts when I am working; I never feel confident. About two hundred pages in, I decide the book's no good, and it was a mistake ever to begin it. And I think there is no way to fix it, and I am generally miserable…If I tell my friends about these concerns, they just say, "Oh, I'm sure you'll work it out." This is very irritating.

Ain't this the truth. I'm on page 215 of my WIP, and I can tell you, I'm thoroughly miserable. My friends are also sure I'm going to figure it out. This is also wholly irritating. LOL.

Last of all, think about attending the Seattle Kid-Lit Drink Night (I'm pretty sure that Douglas Adams would have been all in for an event like this)...

"Did you do Molly Blaisdell’s Golden Coffee Cup Challenge? NANOWRIMO? Did you make any kind of writing and/or illustrating goal in November?

If you hit the jackpot…if you plodded along…even if you didn’t take a single step…come to celebrate and hang out with your peers at our own Kidlit Drink Night! November 30th at Broadway Grill in Seattle (on Broadway in Capitol Hill, across from the QFC – 328-7000) at 5:30pm. Cash bar. Molly will be giving out the Golden Coffee Cup awards (Don't worry if you're from out of town, you don't have to be present to win.)"

Street parking is available, or you can park at QFC for a small parking fee (or get your ticket validated by making a purchase).

Questions? Go to Holly Cupala's blog or ask me. :) Hope to see you!


PeggyD Mom On Bike said...

Wow! Okay, so those are ALL normal feelings for a writer... unconfident, not sure the WIP is really even worth it, etc! What an encouragement to know I'm not alone!
I wish so much I could go to the kidlit night, but I'm too far south and just can't make it up there... I'm with you in spirit though and hope you all have a great time!
Congrats to all of you who accomplished your goals!
Happy Thanksgiving!

holly cupala said...

Just keep going, Molly - I know you'll figure it out. Heh heh.


MollyMom103 said...

Hi PeggyD! That's the way it is, normal is quite unbalanced. :)

Ha, ha, Holly.