Can it be spring already?
It looks like it from here. The sun is shining, rain drying, the doves are back...it has that hard-to-describe spring feeling in the air. I know sunshine doesn't have a scent, but it smells like sunshine.
I've been chopping the hell out of my yard. Pruning roses -- and just about everything else that falls in the path of my trusty scythe. And I'm working on the edits to The Darkling Thrush. Someone pointed out how many titles I had/have with "dark" in them, so this is the last dark title. For a bit. I don't think all the "dark" titles had to do with my mood necessarily -- frankly I was too busy last year to have a mood.
Speaking of dark titles, The Dark Farewell is out next Friday from Samhain. (You can pre-order from Amazon, by the by.) That's the funky little historical novella that I am quite sure is going to leave many a reviewer scratching her head. It's not a mystery, though there there is murder in it. It's a ghost story, but it's not your usual m/m ghostly fuck story. It's historical, but it's no one's favorite period or setting. In short, I love this story. Weird though it -- I freely admit -- is.
And in other dark news, The Dark Tide is now available in print.
So back to The Darkling Thrush. I have to say that of all the things I've written, I find spec fiction by the far the most difficult. It's all the painstaking research of historical fiction, but then you've got to tweak and reshape and rethink, and it's all got to make sense -- it's all got to have that internal logic -- and it's personal in the strangest way -- in a way that no other fiction is. I don't know if that even makes sense or if I can explain what I mean, but when you start to write about magic and other worlds, I think you really start to delve into the writer's pysche in a way that romance or crime fiction or any other reality-based fiction does not.
For this reason I love spec fiction. As much as I hate it. It requires so much work. So much thought. I think spec fiction writers must be the hardest damn working writers in the writing universe.
What else have I been up to? I reread The Larton Chronicles, one of my favorite comfort reads. I find myself unable to read new fiction at the moment. It's the weirdest thing. Maybe because I've done so many manuscript evaluations in the past months that I seem incapable of reading without critiquing. But old favorites, the tried and true tales, somehow slide under the radar.
Oh, and I've been reading Choose Your Own Adventure stories. Courtesy of Emmy Jag. I find them fascinating. Did you ever read those as a kid? I didn't. I found them frustrating. Less so now. In fact, they appeal strongly to my weirdo sense of amusement. I was astonished to realize how many of them end in death and disaster.
That's pretty much it for me. Time to return to The Darkling Thrush and the Western Isles where things are going very badly for poor Colin Bliss who is learning what a very dangerous thing a book can be.