Friday, June 05, 2009


No, this is not a theological treatise.

But it has that feeling. It's about one of those times when the little voice echoes inside your ear (or in this case, mine) and tells you something you might or might not be prepared to hear.

In this case, though, it wasn't about God, it was about books.

Writing. Specifically writing Demetrios and Anny.

While the saga of Charley continues, I'm in the middle of chapter seven of the book I'm supposed to be writing on him. The book that is due June 15th. The book that showed every promise of being there on time.

And yet . . .

There was something in chapter six that had the effect of making me feel as if I was going in a circle, and the circle didn't seem to be tightening.

The circle itself is not a bad sign. As I get closer to the end of a book, things are supposed to speed up, the circle is supposed to tighten. There's supposed to be a logical inevitability to the story that I, at least, can see (even if Demetrios and Anny can't yet).

It's supposed to make it easier to get to the end.

Notice all those "suppose"s in the previous two paragraphs. So, if that isn't happening -- if in sailboat terms, we're becalmed -- if the circle is flat, something is wrong.

Usually it's lack of obstacle. Usually I have to go back and dig deeper to discover what is 'really' keeping the characters apart.

In this case there was too much keeping them apart. They had one obstacle too many.

Anny couldn't go forward because of a moral imperative. Neither could Demetrios. They were going to be in this circle forever (or well past June 15th) if I didn't do something.

So today I will be going back and helping Anny sort out her dilemma rather earlier in the book. She needs to make her decision in chapter three, not chapter six. Then Demetrios and Anny can get where they're going. Or at least where I hope they're going.

Why didn't I see this sooner? Why did I have my 15 beats all figured out (and they still all exist) and yet still have a problem? I don't know.

After 63 books, I'm still learning.

So I spent the morning trying to figure out where the changes need to come. I think I've got it. Now I need to work them in. I'm headed back to chapter one.

I told Charley that a few minutes ago.

He said hopefully, "So you won't be, um, needing me right now?"

I said, "I will certainly need you. What do you think I type on?"

He looked a little crestfallen. "Oh," he said. "Sure. Be right with you."

I think he's ringing some hot red laptop, rearranging plans.

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Anonymous Rachel said...

Dear Anne,

Charley had better be quick, the Scarlet Strumpet's going on vacation soon but if he's very good he might just get a postcard...

Lots of love,

08 June, 2009  
Blogger Lacey Devlin said...

How is it that I've never been to Anne's blog before? It's a question that baffles me. I love your books! Which brings me right back to that question! *Sigh* Well at least I've found you now :)

Savas’ Defiant Mistress sounds fabulous I'm off to buy it this week :)

08 June, 2009  
Blogger Anne McAllister said...

The Scarlet Strumpet!! Charley can't keep his mind on my work at all. Have a good time, you and SS! Charley says, be sure to think of him!

I'm glad you got here now! I hope you'll come back. And I hope, too, that you enjoy Savas' Defiant Mistress. Let me know!

08 June, 2009  

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