Yesterday, I only managed 843 words on Chapter Six of The Red Tree. But. All my concerns about time aside, this morning I do at least retain the clarity to know that it's wrong to worry that you did not write enough on any given day that you sat trying to write. I will say, I think that The Red Tree is the book that I hope I one day have the opportunity to rewrite and expand. One day, I hope there might be a hardback edition with all the different fonts the text calls for, and the photographs, and facsimiles of letters, and all the rest. We can dream. By the way, here's the excerpt from Thoreau's The Maine Woods (1864) that appears in the novel (and offers a bit of insight into the novel, really):
…Nature was here something savage and awful, though beautiful. I looked with awe at the ground I trod on, to see what the Powers had made there, the form and fashion and material of their work. This was that Earth of which we have heard, made out of Chaos and Old Night. Here was no man's garden, but the unhandselled globe. It was not lawn, nor pasture, nor mead, nor woodland, nor lea, nor arable, nor waste-land. It was the fresh and natural surface of the planet Earth, as it was made for ever and ever, —— to be the dwelling of man, we say, —— so Nature made it, and man may use it if he can. Man was not to be associated with it. It was Matter, vast, terrific, —— not his Mother Earth that we have heard of, not for him to tread on, or be buried in, —— no, it were being too familiar even to let his bones lie there, —— the home, this, of Necessity and Fate. There was there felt the presence of a force not bound to be kind to man. It was a place for heathenism and superstitious rites, —— to be inhabited by men nearer of kin to the rocks and to wild animals than we. We walked over it with a certain awe, stopping, from time to time, to pick the blueberries which grew there, and had a smart and spicy taste. Perchance where our wild pines stand, and leaves lie on their forest floor, in Concord, there were once reapers, and husbandmen planted grain; but here not even the surface had been scarred by man, but it was a specimen of what God saw fit to make this world. What is it to be admitted to a museum, to see a myriad of particular things, compared with being shown some star's surface, some hard matter in its home! I stand in awe of my body, this matter to which I am bound has become so strange to me. I fear not spirits, ghosts, of which I am one, —— that my body might, — but I fear bodies, I tremble to meet them. What is this Titan that has possession of me? Talk of mysteries! —— Think of our life in nature, —— daily to be shown matter, to come in contact with it, —— rocks, trees, wind on our cheeks! The solid earth! the actual world! the common sense! Contact! Contact! Who are we? where are we?
And I should also express my gratitude for the many words of encouragement yesterday, though, in truth, that's not why I posted that entry. Rarely do I publicly express the self doubt that I always, always feel. But, as this journal is meant to be an accurate portrayal of what writing is like for me, it seems unfair to never include that part of it, when that part of it is really very front and center. I will never be the writer I want to be. I will always fall short of my own expectations. And maybe that's important, even vital. Maybe it's what keeps me moving.
Please have a look at the current eBay auctions, three of which end today. Also, let me remind you that the mass-market paperback of Daughter of Hounds is now available, and also that subpress is taking pre-orders for my first sf collection, A is for Alien.
A nasty bit of a headache this morning, and I have to beat it down, because there's no time for headaches.
As for the non-writing portion of yesterday, I don't know. I think yesterday and the two days before have sort of blurred together. Spooky has changed the summer altar dressings to the autumn altar dressings, in preparation for Mabon. We spent some time yesterday evening working on my office, which never really got completely unpacked and set up back in June. I reached a point and just sort of stopped unpacking and began writing. But its been bugging me. Spooky spent part of yesterday out photographing various buildings in Providence that we are recreating in the Howards End sim. Last night, we both played far, far too much World of Whorecrack. I fear we are well and truly hooked. I made it as far south as Ashenvale, and the Zoram Strand, which is quite gorgeous, even if the deer can kill you. Merricat has reached Level 18, and halfway to 19. Back on Earth, and actually before WoW, I had a hot bath, and we had leftovers for dinner. I think that was yesterday, more or less. Hubero says hi, by the way.