I’m remembering

…what it was like at this stage, working on Empress. There was a point when I realized that I had to go through the manuscript and actually figure out exactly when everything happened, make a list of all the scenes, and link them to a sequence of calendar dates. I used an 8 1/2 x 11 sheet of paper, turned it to landscape, and wrote out a brief description (less than a sentence, typically) of each scene in tiny handwriting, with lots of crossed-out bits. And writing out those little descriptions helped me see what I had left to do.

I’d forgotten that I’d turned the paper to landscape — it’s not something I typically do, although I work a fair amount in longhand — until today, when I did the exact same thing with all the scenes from The Rules for Hearts. Weird. I wonder what rotating the paper ninety degrees does to my brain.

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  • sarazarr
    February 12, 2006 at 10:59 pm

    Oh yeah. The time-space continuum is a SOB.

  • nevikmoore
    February 13, 2006 at 5:13 am

    It means you’re addicted to television.

    But seriously, I am impressed by your method. Does this help you pay attention to seasonal changes, weather patterns, and so forth? While reading Gaiman’s American Gods, I’ve noticed an acute sense of the weather respective of both season and climate.

  • thinkofaname
    February 13, 2006 at 5:40 am

    I am in awe of the process of writing a book. I may try it someday. When I have a lot more time. And self control.

  • kiramekihoshi
    February 13, 2006 at 10:26 am

    That’s strange.. I think I’d get lost if I started writing, or even reading, like that..


  • anonymous
    February 14, 2006 at 2:31 am

    Yea i know what that feels like, i myself write stories often and look back like that, too.