Wagner Writer

Hi you!
Here’s my latest 4-pronged update:
So I’ve reached a really odd situation with my book. Sitting at just over 400 pages, it’s actually reached a semi-satisfying conclusion. BUT, it’s not the ending I had anticipated months back when first starting the project.
If I go towards the ending I had in mind, I have another 300+ pages to write. And I’m completely torn about what to do. Not because I’m being lazy. The thing is, the book didn’t turn out how I had originally planned. According to my preliminary thoughts and outlines, the main characters should be in a very different place right now. But I ran into something I thought was kind of artsy/silly…until it happened to me:
The book pretty much wrote itself.
A lot of the information I’m reading says a book is a story that already exists and just needs to be told. Therefore, the writer is just essentially taking notes on what happened. I admit I thought that sounded like malarkey. It’s that artsy stuff that doesn’t feel tangible enough to me. I mean, I’ve written several other, albeit smaller, things and everything turned out exactly as I had planned.
Until now.
Writing this book, the character would constantly do things I hadn’t planned. It sounds really weird, like the character was in control. And that’s kind of it. But honestly, I think it’s more the fact that I was in the moment. When when you’re in the moment, you’re acutely aware of what the character is feeling. So in that instance, their feelings/reactions may actually be different than what you were predicting when outlining or whatever. And, when it happens, you have to explore that path as it’s probably more honest.
For example, I have a fairly tragic scene that was planned out months ago. When running through it in my head, I thought the character would be upset yet realize it was for the greater good. However, when I got to writing it and was immersed in the scene, I realized the character is utterly devastated. And I don’t think it’s necessarily because the book wrote itself. It’s that I realized my initial thoughts completely underestimated the event. So I explored the new outcome and it has really shaped the book into what it is now.
And it’s SOOO different from what I originally thought. That might be my sign to stop now, but I had planned out some really interesting things. Boo.
It’s funny. Everything book out there says to celebrate the completion of a first draft. But I don’t know if I should celebrate or keep writing. If I AM done, I’m kind of sad that the joy of finishing a major project was lost on me because I’m over thinking it.
OK I mentioned a singing project a few weeks ago and wanted to give everyone an update:
First off, I *think* it’s going to be really fun. I believe I already said that but I wanted to restate it. It’s basically going to be a video shot in 4 parts. I’ve been rehearsing the first part and finally have it down. To do so, I had to buy digital sheet music and an application that will play it.
All right, I’m going to side track for a minute because I didn’t know that existed! Essentially you can buy online sheet music. If you have a special player (I found one called Online Sheet Music Viewer), it will play the song. And you can adjust the tempo and instruments that are used for each part. So it’s like interactive sheet music. Pretty cool!
Anyway, we started the initial setup tonight. It’s janky: we have my iPhone rubber-banded into a tripod (it’s not made for iPhones, lol), a lamp from my room, Chris’s cheesy little speakers, and painter’s tape on the floor to mark the spot where I’ll be sitting. When we actually go to film, Windy will have to record from my phone then hit “play” on HER phone to start the piano music. That’s when I join in. It’s all very high dollar stuff 🙂  
I’m VERY VERY much hoping it will turn out OK! I did realize that I HATE hearing myself sing. We did a few practice takes tonight to get the volume correct and… yuck.
I bet y’all can’t wait to hear it now, right?
OH! I almost forgot, I’m not sure who all reads my blog, but I will soon be enlisting a certain friend to help with video editing. If you read this, you know who you are, and I’ll be very appreciative. If you don’t read this, then get ready for a call! But since you don’t read it, that doesn’t make any sense.
Enjoying the Area
My kayak came in today!! I’m so excited!
I promised myself that, if I came out here, I would spend as much time on the lake as possible. In case y’all don’t know, the town of Page exists because of the Glen Canyon Dam. Essentially, they dammed off the Colorado River just north of the Grand Canyon and the gorges filled with water. So it’s almost like having a lake IN the Grand Canyon. It’s really amazing and I’d post some generic pictures, but I want to wait til I have the real thing.
Anywho, we discussed getting a jet ski or something, but I love the idea of kayak! Why? First, I can get a workout on the lake. My arms are super puny and I HOPE that flailing with paddles in the water for a few months might give me some guns (even if they’re Deringers, I’ll be happy). Second, I can go through all the little canyons scattered throughout the lake. Some are too small or shallow for other watercraft, but I will have no problems in a kayak. Third, kayaks are obviously much cheaper. Still, if they were the same price, I’d still want a kayak. It’s going to be great!
Because I don’t want to lose any precious writing time, my plan is to get a waterproof back pack and take my laptop with me out on the lake. I’ll paddle around and find a secluded beach somewhere (there are tons) and start writing. How awesome does that sound! However, I AM the whitest person who’s ever lived so I’m also getting an SPF tent to sit under. LOL! I didn’t even know tents with SPF existed but I’ll be writing in one.
The kayak itself is a tandem, meaning it sits one or two people. That’s perfect because I can take visitors out on the lake but still go out alone on writing days. Chris and I are planning to do a test run next Friday. The water is still FRIGID, but we really want to try it out. I’ll definitely post pictures from our excursion. In the meantime, here’s a pic of the kayak:
Random Learnings or Stories
I finished my housesitting, babysitting, and dog sitting duties on Sunday. It went really well but the whole ordeal was surprisingly exhausting. In fact, it was utterly, utterly exhausting. I usually love being in different places, but I finally understand when people are excited to sleep in their own beds. Watching after a bunch of diaper dogs and a 12-year old for 3 days is tiring!
Here are the most memorable moments from the weekend:
1.    I took the girl I watched to the kids’ basketball courts on Saturday. Because the rims were only eight feet tall, I could dunk from my tippy toes. We decided that probably wasn’t fair and engaged in a game of “weird HORSE”. In a nutshell, it’s HORSE, but you have to take the craziest shot you can think of. And you have to attempt the same shot on your turn until you make it. It turns out we were both really awesome at the game! She made a shot where she stood behind the backboard, bounced the ball on the ground, and it flew over the backboard and went in. NICE. I made a “double bounce shot”, where I stood at the 3-point line and the ball bounced twice. It was also nice, but took me forever.
2.    We changed a TON of dog diapers. Check out this previous post for some back ground info. After the weekend was over, we had filled more than one trash can full of the things!! Holy cow those dogs know how to pee! It actually wasn’t too bad as they’re so used to wearing the diapers, they just stand there and let you put them on. One of the dogs really liked me and followed me around everywhere. Even though I was the new guy, he slept on or near me every night. And if I rolled over on my back, he climbed up on my chest. It was pretty cute.
3.    Every night, the girl and I watched movies outside on their patio. They have a 2ndstory patio with a projector and screen but haven’t watched anything this season because it’s been too cold. We didn’t let that stop us. We dragged like six blankets and tons of pizza rolls outside then curled up on two lawn chairs to watch movies. By around midnight, it was windy and in the upper 40s so we cocooned up on our chairs and peeked out in the cold. It was totally worth it, though. Being out under the stars watching movies was really fun. And we watched a classic: Billy Madison!

Leave a Comment