Tuesday, May 26, 2009

What's on my desk today?!?!? Who Cares?

Quote of the Day:
Just cause you got the Monkey off your back,
doesn't mean the circus has left town.

~George Carlin

Current Local Weather:
Rain? Got it? Need it?
Tears? Got em? Need em?
Lightening rod pain in the a**?
Selling it all by the boatload here in the Springs.

Currently on my iPod:
Grace Kelly *
*singing it at the top of your lungs first thing in the morning helps.*

Dear Friends, Family and my Family of Friends,

Wrapping it up. Yep. That's what I thought too. Stop laughing. Please, really, it's a sick and disturbing laugh and makes the voices come back. I don't have enough meds to get me through the day, so please, hold back this once, cut me some slack. And don't look at me that way, it's just a simple oversight. Really, I can be a better person. Tomorrow, promise. But for today, it' s just a re-interview or two or five. Or maybe a straggler asking, *begging* to be recounted as someone in the book. A re-write, trim, lipo-suction of the worst kind, the MS kind!

Working...working...working...For all two of you who read this blog who are writers, or haplessly addicted to my process of documenting the jazz community in our nation, let me give you a run down of stats and what it takes to put together a project of this stature. At least my version of what it takes. The real stats might be revealed one day when I'm dead. For now, you get my version. (I love stats. I should have majored in it!)

  • Days working on The New Face of Jazz MS: 382
  • Words in working, non-organized draft, as of 7:22a.m. MST, Tues. May 26, 2009: 87,902
  • Words allowed: Somewhere around 130K, and no, that will never be enough.
  • Words in working, organized, pretty and could be ready one day soon-ish draft, as of 7:23a.m. MST, Tues. May 26, 2009: 10,076
  • Number of artists scheduled to be included in draft as of same time, place, yadda, yadda: 285
  • Number of artists likely not to make book due to the RH version captain crunch of page counts: 100
  • Number of interns starting today to help finish the compilation of all this data: 1
  • Number of sighs of relief breathed due to the start of said intern: ONE!
  • Appendix pages that are in complete shambles: too many to list and in fear of agent/editor reading, will not be mentioned in great detail. :)
  • Number of jazz societies, educational venues, clubs, non-profits and other such places that need to be contacted, updated and more: Yeah, like I'd really tell you. There's not enough Valium in the world to give you the exact number before I go into a complete and utter panic attack, not heading down that slippery slope this morning.
  • Number of interviews left to transcribe: 18
  • Number of hours those interviews consume in my iTunes: 30
  • Number of legal letters Random House wants me to send out for permission to use the words of people who already granted me interviews, are mostly out of contact due to summer tour schedules and more: uh, somewhere in the vicinity of over 300.
  • Number of Advil, Tylenol and other OTC/illegal/street drugs that can be consumed in any given hour while working on deadline without killing oneself: I'll get back to you on that one.
This is just a little bit'o'work from my desk. What's on your plate/desk/car dashboard today? For me, working towards a goal, no matter how small, as in, Cicily will get her emails out to the artists today regarding letters and photo shoots today, is something I have to have in order to be productive. When I decided to hire on an intern to help take over some of this massive project I had to abate any of the naysaying critical inner-voices inside me. This will only help me meet my goal. Is she writing my book for me, uh, hell no. Is she doing anything that could be constituted as child-labor, slave-labor, yes. But that's by her own choice. She's old enough, so whatever. Having someone look up addresses, names, contact info., mail envelopes etc. is a BLESSING!

Can you really do it all by yourself? Of course! Wonder-Twin Powers Unite! (*Ching your wrists together wit a writer friend, spin around in a circle and then go back to your desk screaming that outloud. Your voices and you will unite and it will all happen for you too! This pledge is not backed by my usual 90 day money-back-guarantee. Please email the complaints dept. with any questions.*)

But seriously, can you? I can. I know I can. I just have to have a clear goal in mind. Regardless of the genre you're writing in, you must know what your end goal of that particular piece is going to be. I'm not talking about the goal of publication/agent/marriage etc, I'm talking small-micro-managed goals. Is your goal to have your character get up and move across the room? Then go for it. Why is it hard for this character to get up and move this way? Is his mother-in-law sitting across that room? Is there a dead man he doesn't want to have to kill AGAIN sitting there? Is there a monkey on his back?

Plot out your day just as you would your characters and you might just find that one of Those days, will soon turn into one of those GREAT days in which you can start to say, mission accomplished.

Now if you'll excuse me, I must go back to the jelly bean breakfast, laden with diet coke and a sampling of peanut butter granola that I've set up for myself and the recorded words of the masters. :)

Yours in micro-managing, making-out-like-a-bandit, and more-or-less losing my mind,



Travis Erwin said...

You can do it!

Rebecca said...

You can do it, the To Do list will always be bigger than the "Done" list.

I hope all goes well with your book, I can't wait to read it!

Angie Ledbetter said...

You'll get there...one bite at a time, just like that bowl of granola. :)

The retreat house looks fab!

Ricky Bush said...

Wow! The Energizer Bunny ain't got nothin' on you. Damned the torpedoes--full speed ahead! Oh, wait,who said that? Do I need a release signature? Anyway--