Working at a furious pace, I finished writing Behold! yesterday, just before the weather turned nasty. Yup, got it all done.
So that night I sat down to relax with a popsicle. As you can see above, they print riddles on the popsicle sticks. You have to eat the popsicle to see the answer. But for me–for this guy who had just that day finished writing a book–get a load of this question:
“What did the author say about his novel when it was finished?” (Answer: “It’s a complete mystery.”)
Whoa! How did this happen? Is that a bodacious coincidence or what? How unlikely was it that this particular popsicle stick would wind up in my hands on that particular day?
I wonder if I ought to write to the Popsicle Company. It might make a good commercial. Can I ask for Denzel Washington to play me?
With a prayer, and with a cold wind blowing in my face, I have finished writing Behold! And if this book’s climax is as good as I dare hope–well, kowabunga!
I’m reminded of an essay (or was it a letter?) by Tolkien, in which he described a conversation he had with a stranger about The Lord of the Rings–who said to him, “You don’t think you wrote all that all by yourself, do you?” It was just the sort of thing, said Tolkien, that Gandalf would have said–and he left it at that.
I thank the Lord of All for giving me this book to write, and pray my work will be fruitful in His service. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
I haven’t yet seen any woolly mammoths walking through my yard, but it is kind of cold today for me to be sitting outside, writing. But after three straight days of rain, and more in the short-term weather forecast, I have to use what sunshine I can get. The climactic scene has got to be written!
Meanwhile, take a gander at Citizens Free Press–the usurpers’ house of cards is crumbling.
Attorney and investigator Sidney Powell vows, “I’m going to release the kraken. I’m going to expose every one of them.” The kraken is a legendary sea monster, a gigantic squid that pulls down full-size ships for breakfast.
The theft of the 2020 presidential election, the biggest and boldest crime in American history, will not stand.
Pray hard, pray often–and prepare to see the salvation of the Lord.
Now that I finally know what the climax of the story is, and where all the characters have to be when it happens… can I get it all written before the cold weather takes over?
I reckon I’ve got about a week’s worth of good writing days left. Can I wrap up the story, if I work real hard?
Bell Mountain No. 14, Behold!–it’s been a hard hike over rough terrain. Didn’t get the climax till just a few days ago. When that happens the writer runs a serious risk of having his characters just milling around. My editor says I have avoided that. I pray she’s right.
If I can write it like I’ve seen it, my climax will have been worth waiting for.
What a morning! Hand in our votes, supermarket, pay rent–and all with a cold wind blowing, with 40-mph gusts. Complete with a great big black walnut branch breaking off and falling in the yard. Fortunately it didn’t hit anything. And my leg was just killing me, too.
But all that hassle must’ve cleared out the cobwebs for me, because when we finally got home again, and I sat outside to have a cigar–voila!
I’ve got the climax for Behold! Now I’ve seen what the people in my story are going to behold. And if I can find the skill to write what I saw, as I saw it–well, it’s gonna knock your socks off.
Meanwhile the computer I normally use has gone on strike. Ain’t working.
So kick back and enjoy some dinosaur sounds: it has a bearing on the story.
If you’ve been following my progress, as reported here, I’ve really been sweating it, trying to come up with a climax for Bell Mountain No. 14, Behold! The question gave me no peace: “Behold what? What’s there to behold?” And I’ve been praying about it, asking the Lord to give me the story that He wants me to tell. That’s what I always ask Him; and so far, He always has.
So I was out there in the cold yesterday, too cold to write, finishing up my cigar… and the idea just sort of drifted into my head. Sometimes it comes with a bang, as when the gunslinger in a movie shoves open the doors to the saloon. Sometimes it’s like a flashbulb. Sometimes I get the climax first and have to find the way to it. But this time it just drifted quietly into my head; and when I went back indoors, I got distracted by other things and didn’t think of it.
Until I woke up this morning!
Gee, it was still there. I don’t know how to tell you how unusual that is for me. I get a lot of ideas that don’t amount to anything. But this one was not only still there: now it was much clearer. It was better. It ties together the strands of the plot that were just sort of whipping in the wind.
Hallelujah, I can finish my book! I asked the Lord to show me how, and He did. Now all I need is some friendly weather–and a lot of energy–in which to write it up.
Oh–and I still need some good ideas for cover art for No. 13, The Wind from Heaven. Kirk DouPonce is a great cover artist, but he prefers the author (which is me) to come up with the ideas. I’m still wondering how he gets my characters so real: you’d swear they posed for him.
Well, here I am, in kindlier weather than we have today, scribbling away at Bell Mountain No. 14, Behold! Today, in spite of the fog and the threat of rain, I finished Chapter 31. (Don’t worry–it won’t be as long as Oy, Rodney.) Helki the Rod has just had more excitement than is good for him; and I reckon another half-dozen chapters will do it.
I still don’t know just what it is that the characters in the story are going to behold. Lord, I hope you’ll tell me soon. Usually He gives me the book’s climax a lot sooner than this. For instance, I already have the climax for Book 15. Always in hope that I’ll be able to write it.
Meanwhile, I’ve got to come up with cover art for No. 13, The Wind from Heaven, so artist Kirk DouPonce can get to work on it. Ships from very far away have suddenly appeared off Obann’s coast: maybe we could show the first shore party landing. I await the birth of an idea.
Ooh-ooh-ooh! It’s stopped raining! The sun came out!
I’d better get out there and start writing. It won’t be long now before the cold weather sets in and the ink won’t run from my pen (yes, I’ve actually tried to writing on days that cold–and that’s what happened), and I have a book I’ve got to finish.
Phoebe mentioned being as busy as a hamster spinning in a wheel, so here are some busy hamsters for you to contemplate. How come they don’t get dizzy when they do this? Sixty seconds of this stuff and I don’t think a human being would ever recover from it. This deserves serious study.
Ah, Behold! What a time I’ve had with you! It wasn’t till near the end of May that the weather allowed me to start work on you–a whole month lost, right out of the batter’s box. And I still don’t know what anybody in the story is going to behold.
Nevertheless, I am being pulled along willy-nilly, the current’s strong and I can’t swim against it–and, as Jackie Gleason used to say, awaaaay we go!
It’s dark and dreary, raining cats and dogs, damp and cold (man, that makes my leg hurt!)–no novel-writing today. Yeah, I know the rain is part of nature, too. But you can’t write on paper that’s getting rained on. Nor do I wish to acquire a touch of pneumonia.
Yesterday I wrote six pages of Behold! and Wednesday, five. I am being strongly pulled along–to what kind of climax, I don’t know yet. I reckon I’ve got at least one more chapter set to write, a little more than 10,000 words; and it’s got to get done before the cold weather sets in and the ink won’t run out of the pen.
But not today, ol’ hoss–not today. I can always write Joe Collidge, and there’s a book I have to review for Chalcedon. There’s also the temptation to go back to bed. My cats advise it. H.P. Lovecraft always listened to his cats. But then he was eccentric and I’m not.
To all of you who wrote in yesterday to tell me that you liked His Mercy Endureth Forever, a great big thank you!
I’m actually back to being eager to work on Bell Mountain No. 14, Behold! I can’t do it today because it’s cold and rainy. Somehow I can no longer write fiction indoors. Maybe it’s from being ceaselessly pelted by nuisance phone calls all day. Bear in mind I’m trying to write about a world that exists only in my mind and trying to make it exist in the reader’s mind, too. It’s not as easy as it sounds.
I’m still waiting to find out what it is that my characters are going to behold. I could always change the title, I suppose; but I like to go with the first thing that comes into my head, in case it came from God. And having a title up there from the get-go gives me something to shoot for.
So when the rain stops I’ll be back out there, trying to finish telling the story before it’s so cold that the ink won’t flow from my pen. Yes, that actually happens. Try it sometime. Besides, when it gets under 50 degrees, that’s a distraction.