With some exceptions - when I have too many errands to squeeze into lunch, or most Thursdays when I'm working from home and somehow find 100 other things like.. ugh, work... to do instead of disconnecting my laptop and escaping to write - most weekdays I take off to the café in the Borders bookstore Northborough, MA, sit in a comfy chair (my small decaf black is usually waiting at the counter, they know me by now) and write. I tried to work at a Starbucks once, closer to work, but there's something about the comfy chairs at Borders and the massive homey (much more so than the warehouse-ish-ness of most B&N's) bookstore right there that feeds my muse. I write a lot. At least, as much as I can before I have to backup the work on my flash drive, pack up the computer and head back to the grind of real life. I usually only drink about half the coffee.
Before I leave, I take a circuitous path to the door via one book aisle or the other, I like to vary them, and look at the books. So many, many books, from so many, many writers. I look at the covers, the publishers and feel the effort and love gone into them, happy for the writers who have made it. They are able to walk into a bookstore and see their work, their book. People are buying it, reading it, maybe even enjoying it. It's the apex of the dream we scribes have had, or most of us, since childhood. I don't feel I've gotten there yet, Italy and Germany are simply too far away. Seeing my stories in magazines is a thrill, and it's a great feeling of accomplishment - it's almost there, more a big step. Anyway, it's what I do each day, not as self-abuse, but inspiration, telling my muse, my soul, myself that what I'd just spent an hour of my life doing was not in vain. These books, these children of a writer's mind, are the goal. Keeps me coming back.
Got back to Plague of Locusts today - didn't write much new stuff, instead reworked the first two chapters. I wanted to get a better feel for the two main characters and the setting, revising the chapters, fleshing out Gendrick and Peyton and Loki (I decided to name the Locust that makes an appearance in Ch 1). I drove back to work happy. This book is like a sculpture already defined in the marble, waiting for my chisel. I think what I'll do next is map out the plot a bit - make sure I'm heading in the right direction. I'm not overly sure what the main "conflict" will be - and that's important in order to know which direction to go.
My son Andrew recently asked me what the book's going to be about. I don't like to talk about the plot of a book, written or not, makes me uncomfortable, as if speaking it out loud would make it sound like the drek it probably is. But I gave him a quick summary, and he had a couple of pretty good ideas where I can go with it. I shrugged noncommittally, but a couple of his ideas refused to shake loose. Maybe... might make for a pretty cool concept. We'll see. But the book is there, it feels three-dimensional, and has color. Going to enjoy writing it.
Did a little work on "The Bridge" this week as well. I'm in the paper-editing stage, which means we're getting close to finishing.