So I'm Writing This Novel

drafting science fiction writing process

At the end of April 2003, I graduated from college with a BFA in Graphic Design. I already had a job, working at the marketing firm where I'd been an assistant designer for a couple years already. My boyfriend was still on the wrong side of the country, so it was just me and my brother's dog for that summer. June 28 of that year, Disney released Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl into theaters. I went with my mother to see it opening night, and I was enthralled. I had, as a child, been a huge fan of The Pirates of Penzance and Peter Pan and apparently my red blood cells are actually buccaneer ships. The movie caught my imagination. With far too much time on my hands, I saw the movie almost a dozen times in theaters that summer, and hummed the theme more often than not. A character grew out of that inspired mood. Talis, the pirate. She was a full-on romanticized pirate to start, but she commandeered the story and I've been following her orders ever since. Talis and her friends are trying to save their world from an alien invasion (I told you she commandeered the story, and I meant it). Only, it turns out, the aliens may be the least of their problems. Not least of my worries, though, is finally finishing this novel. Because Talis has already threatened me with at least two more adventures, and there is no way I want to spend twelve years on each of them. As I get closer to a final draft, I swear I feel farther from my goal than ever. Thank goodness my husband (the boyfriend mentioned earlier) is also a creative person, and understands projects of passion. And thank goodness he loves to read. How many drafts has he read, now? And he's promised to read them all, bless his heart. I also am graced with friends who have kept up with this story's process. Friends who help me to brainstorm, who check my grammar and continuity, and who help to coax the whole story out of my head so that it actually makes a lick of sense to those who can't read my mind. This book has been in the works for a dozen years. I'm hoping it'll be wrapped up within a baker's dozen, because I can't wait for the world to get a load of Talis and her friends.