Friday, April 03, 2009

Yippe-Ki-YEAY!

Yes, that victory shout that broke the sound barrier on Wednesday about noon was me meeting my deadline. Phew!

Not only did I meet my deadline, but the Reading Gods sent me two great books to fuel the final leg of the revision. They must have heard me whining. The first book was Shakespeare's Secret by Elise Broach and was a delightfully satisfying mystery that delved into some fun literary history. What I loved most about the story was its surprising emotional ending and the protagonist, Hero. I thought the author did a fabulous job of really nailing that sense of what its like to not be popular and always have to worry about social interactions.

The second book, Emma Jean Lazaus Fell Out Of A Tree by Lauren Tarshis was equally fabulous. The thing I loved most about this book was the voice. Gawd. I'm tempted to put a sign above my computer, It's the voice, stupid! The book came just in time to illustrate that I'd completely dropped my main character's voice for about half my novel and switched into a more distant author-speak. It made for an extra scramble there at the end with tons more rewriting, but I was able to crawl more deeply into poor Nathaniel's skin and get him on the page.

Another thing Tarshis did extremely well was her use of a concrete object. A concrete object is some physical prop that absorbs emotional meaning throughout the story. I'll talk about those here on the blog in a few days--once I find my brain again. Now I'm off to grocery shop and clean the bathrooms. What? That's not how you celebrate finishing a novel??

6 comments:

Dave said...

I'm determined to lurk less!

Congrats on finishing, Robin! Wine beats Windex for celebrating though...

Do you worry about Voice on your first draft, or is it something you're more conscious of in re-vision?

Robin L said...

Dave,

I'm so glad you're lurking less! In fact, I've been thinking of holding a monthly drawing in order to encourage more comments.

You know, the annoying thing is I DO worry about voice in my first draft. It's one of the first things I have to nail down. I think what happened with this book, though, was I had to write it quickly, and had about a twelve hour break between turning in Theo III and starting Beastologist II, so I didn't have a chance to cleanse my literary palate.

And interesting you should ask about voice. My recent struggles with have made it a topic I'm going to blog a lot about in the next week or two. There are just so many components to it, and it is so ephemeral. Except when it's missing, and then it's glaringly obvious. :-)

Dave said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Dave said...

I'm taking a rookie crack at first person POV and having major problems with Voice consistency because I'm more focused on just getting the story down. I hope I'm not sabotaging the whole thing. Maybe the Voice fairy will pay a visit...

Robin L said...

If the Voice Fairy doesn't manage to pay you a visit between now and then, Dave, stop by next week and we'll talk about ways to coax her out of hiding...

Mary Hershey said...

Oh, I'm glad you got to read this finally, Robin. I loved, loved, loved Emma Jean!

Shoulda won the Fleischman!

:-)
Mary