I didn’t mention it before till now because I didn’t want to jinx my progress. Now that it’s pretty much done — save for edits and rewrites — I can now make the announcement.
I finished a second novel.
I’m as surprised as your are. I considered myself done with fiction writing after I set up The Courtship of Gary Huang on Lulu. There’s still a lot work to be done with Eponymous 4, and I didn’t want to be torn between two creative urges.
But then I showed a dormant revision I started back in 2004 to a couple of friends, and they were eager to know how the story turned out. So I decided just to chip away at it slowly, not to consider it some kind of contest. The further the story got, the more encouragement I received, so I found myself practically sprinting to the finish in the last few weeks (last few days in particular.)
Of course, what’s done is a first draft. Now I have to go back and rewrite the thing. (This revision is the fourth attempt at tackling this story. The previous versions didn’t capture the tone I wanted.)
Perhaps most important is the how the novel turned out to be a refuge from Eponymous 4. I haven’t been writing anything new for Eponymous 4 because I have so much unfinished, and at this point, it’s become more about refinement and editing than creation. I also have to confess I’m kind of blocked music-wise, and I want the next album to be incredibly ambitious. I don’t think I’ll really be ready to start writing anything for Eponymous 4 till 2010.
At the same time, I didn’t want to disengage. I wanted to be working on something, and the feedback I got from the novel seemed like a good channel to which to direct that energy.
I’ve also been sitting on this particular story for more than decade, and at some point, it had to be set. The main character, Crux, has been stirring around in my head since the early ’90s, so it’s kind of nice finally to have a complete story of his down on magnetic bits. (And soon, paper.)
I even tried to start a second Crux novel before the first one was finished as a way to participate in NaNoWriMo. I got about seven chapters done before I realized that story also could not be squeezed into a 30-day time-frame. I’ve started revising that story as well.
I have vacation time coming up in July, which I’ve intended to devote to recording. I think I’ll focus on fiction for the time being so that I don’t prematurely burn myself out before the next marathon of sessions.
Besides, I have to justify my use of QuarkXpress.
By the way, I’m calling the book Starting to Remember, and I confess it’s a bit of a reference to the Madonna song "Something to Remember". I’ve been trying to find a title for this thing for a long time, and once Starting to Remember grabbed me, it made the work all that much easier.