Beth Camp Historical Fiction

Monday, August 25, 2008

Monday morning.

Today begins the new week. This week we're back on the road, in the midst of moving to Vancouver, Washington, and I'll be taking down one of the most beautiful offices I've ever worked in. Each morning about 6 am, I sit here, sometimes with a cup of ginger tea, and look out over a forest of scrub brush pines, the sun sometimes coloring a few clouds pink. Within an hour, the color is done, the sky a flat blue, but I don't notice. I'm writing. The $20 printer I got from a garage sale two months ago works just fine. My bright blue plastic packing crates turned on their sides function beautifully as a temporary bookcase. And I have my desk. One of those really big fold up office tables. Ah, spread out and work!

I don't know exactly where my next office will be. We haven't seen the apartment yet. Most likely I'll have a nook somewhere. This ambiguity of space comes at a time when I'm really finished with the first draft. I should be celebrating, but I know what is ahead. The same ambiguity of space, only internal. The story is on paper. I love these characters, but have I done them justice? Do I speak for them their innermost thoughts and hopes? Have I captured their experiences in a time not my own? Will I have the tenacity and vision to edit? and for how long?

I'd rather the story was rolling forward, but everything I've read and heard suggests this part, this revision part, is as important as any drafting that goes before. So, I'll begin. With a new office and a different kind of progress. Meanwhile, writing each week for Sunday Scribblings gives me a kind of writing community that leavens out this other work. And when do I start sending the book out? I only know not yet.

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