July 1st, 2005


Jewel Eye

I'm half awake, at best. Maybe one-third awake. A long night of dreams. But the good news is that I did a whopping 2,405 words on Chapter Six of Daughter of Hounds yesterday. If I can do as well today, I can finish the chapter on July 3rd, as planned. I think I shall spend the entirety of the Fourth asleep. I have to be in Birmingham on July 5th-6th. Anyway, yes, the chapter is moving along. The book is moving along. I'm encountering moments I've known were coming for more than a year and moments I had no idea were coming until the instant I wrote them down. The folly of outlining as anything more than suggestion is made clear, once again, by the directions this book takes. Without me, it seems sometimes, though I understand this to be illusion. There are times when I resist, and I think, That's not what's supposed to happen here, and then I remind myself that the collective unconscious is just that, unconscious, and all my purposeful thoughts on the book have been conscious, and I allow the story to do what feels right, not what I planned and wrote down and told my agent and editor.

I would absolutely suck at writing novelizations, even if it were a novelization of my own work.

It's going to be another very hot, hazy, polluted day out there. I don't much mind, because I don't have to go out again until after sundown, but I feel for the birds. Beats the frell out of winter.

After all the writing yesterday, I was almost too tired to even chew, which made dinner interesting, and ended up lying on the chaise, watching Manor House on PBS (Mr. Edgar is my new hero) and then a Margaret Cho thing on Sundance. Too much television after staring at the computer screen all day, but at least it was good television. And then I crawled off the bed.

I've seen some criticism of Speilberg's War of the Worlds condemning it as being right-wing and pro-military, and I'm like, what? Did we see the same movie? Throughout the film, the American military is shown to be ineffectual. They can't stop the aliens. They can't even manage to hold back a crowd. Sure, one tripod is felled with grenades scavenged from a burning military vehicle after the Army has failed, and at the end, another is downed with a shoulder-to-air missile gadget, but only after a civilian points out that its shields have gone down, and its vulnerable. That one was gonna die anyway. In the end, Nature defeats the aliens (as in Wells' novel), not the US military. This is explicitly clear. But it is a war film, as should be made abundantly obvious by the title, so a certain degree of military presence is to be expected, yes? I mean, if the scenario presented in the film were to occur, we'd most likely see some military response, however misguided. Now I'm trying to imagine W vs. the aliens. Hmmmm...

P.S. — Happy Canada Day, whatever that means!
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