Monday, February 23, 2009

If you're happy with your aardvark, clap your hands!


I've been very quiet here lately. I have been reading all my usual blogs and even commenting occasionally, but I haven't felt the need to post myself. In this case, that's a good sign, because my energy and focus has been on planning for my next novel, code-named Aardvark. (Weird, yes, but a cool word!)

This afternoon, I'll start the book's first draft.

I am excited and nervous about this. Both for the same reasons, really... because things ALWAYS change from my outlines and because it's such an undertaking to write a novel. I look at the polished text of the previous ones and find it so hard to believe that at some point I was here with them too, with a collection of outlines and notes and nothing more.

But I was, and I have faith that in the not-too-distant future I will be here with the next book, looking back at the polished text of Aardvark (which by then will have a title, I hope!) and wondering how it all happened.

So, here is the basic summary of Aardvark's plot. This is unlike anything I've ever written before and I am thrilled to bits about that because how will I get better if I don't try something I've never done before? It could be a glorious success or an equally glorious failure, but either way, it'll be glorious. :)
Thirty-something Rhiannon is an obsessive planner and goal-setter, but somehow nothing she achieves ever seems good enough to her. Determined to lose forty pounds for her best friend's August wedding, Rhiannon flees her parents' house in a Christmas-day blizzard to avoid the temptation of all her favorite foods, but her car skids off the deserted road into a tree.

Unable to escape the car, with her leg trapped and bleeding and her cell phone out of reach, Rhiannon is at first certain she'll be rescued and writes notes to her friends and family to pass the time. As the weather cools and her condition deteriorates, though, she recognizes the possibility that her life might be over. Interspersed with increasingly desperate escape attempts, her letters become deeper and more heart-felt as she comes to see what really matters in life.
If you've spent more than five minutes reading this blog in the past, you'll see that a lot of what Rhiannon's struggling with are my issues as well. That's exactly what I wanted: to try to write answers I don't have for the questions I care about. I can't wait to see how this all works out!

A brief Val update: Val is doing great! No longer just eyeballs and a fin, Val now has eyeballs (good, right?), a body, and a back fin. He's maybe twice as big as he was before, and I've seen him eating the crushed flake food I've put into the breeding trap for him. Yay, Val! Yay, Aardvark!

Yay! Now, time for lunch, the gym, and a trip to Starbucks where I'll start writing Aardvark!

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