Call Me Scatter-Brained

Posted: June 28, 2008 in Ramblings

It’s a quiet night. The kids are tucked into bed. My wife is upstairs reading a novel, and I’m downstairs contemplating a bowl of ice cream before we watch a rented flick. Tomorrow is Sunday. I’ll be preaching on trusting each other. The thrust of my message is that we can pretty much trust each other to mess up in our relationships, but we should choose to be vulnerable anyway as an act of love.

I’ve started yet another new book. I’m beginning to suspect what I’ve known for a long time. I have a hard time finishing novels. This time I’m working on Saint Jude. Saint Jude is the story about what happens when an ex-con, a convicted pedophile in this case (I tried to imagine the worst possible sin I could), moves back home and wants to start attending church. It’ll be an interesting contrast in grace versus law, I think. I’m not sure about the beginning just yet, but I’ll keep working on it. At the moment I have 5,136 words.

So here are the stats:
Topheth – 27,910 words
Jezebel – 6,486 words
Autograph – 24,475 words
The Novem – 26,289 words

Gee, if I’d have just concentrated on one book, I’d have (gets calculator) 90,296 words. A second finished novel in addition to The Coppersmith. My only consolation is that if I keep this up (and don’t add any more new novels!) I’ll be able to knock out a series of books to sell in a short period of time. I don’t know if that will be a good thing or not.

On the other hand, I prefer to spend time working on multiple stories. I can switch back and forth whenever I get stuck or bored, and keep writing without any real issues with writer’s block. Oh well. As long as I’m enjoying the process.

  1. Katharine says:

    Love your word count stats because they remind me of The Deadliest Catch crab count! Yeah, so when ARE you going to finish a novel??? You’ve got some great ideas going, with enough outlined material to carry them through to completion…If you need a resource person for your latest effort, I know a jail chaplain.

  2. This is me sitting here without cable, so… is that a Spongebob thing? Anyway, I do expect to finish the sundry novels in the next year(s) or so. I’ve got some writer’s block on The Novem, which is why I stopped working on it. Topheth is coming along nicely, but I’m still learning about how the characters interact with each other. It’s a little odd because it is a sequel, but the dynamics have changed a bit, so I guess that’s why it’s taking so long. Autograph hasn’t marinated in my imagination enough. I don’t have any blocks to the story – it just isn’t good enough yet. I’ll keep shoving my way through it, and then probably have to rewrite the whole thing when I’m done. It’s not as dark as some of my other stuff, which may be why I’m having a more difficult time with it. My MC is more banal, and I must find what makes him engaging before flinging him into the action. Right now he’s just kinda goofy.I might like to talk to your jail chaplain, but I’ll have to come up with a list of questions first. Most of what happens in Saint Jude happens after he gets out, but there might be insights into the mannerisms and characteristics of ex-cons he could assist with. Thanks!

  3. Katharine says:

    Spongebob, my left feet. And I thought I was out of the mainstream! Check out Discovery Channel’s show, The Deadliest Catch, for gripping real-life drama in one of the world’s most dangerous professions. (They’d have a show about writers, but it would only *tell* about action instead of showing it!)

  4. Hmm… Did you miss the part about not having cable? Not only do I miss out on SpongeBob, but I don’t get to watch Discovery channel, either! As for most dangerous profession… I wonder how pastoring would rate?

  5. Katharine says:

    Sorry, I meant to say that you can get at least a “taste” of Deadliest Catch by looking at Discovery Channel’s website:, half of my mind was elsewhere, and I don’t know where the other 60% went.

  6. Ah. That’d be helpful. I’ll give it a look – later today, perhaps – after the morning routine settles down. Thanks!

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