Writing life

Write hard, die free

Cold and Long Dark

I’ve still got a couple of politically oriented posts to write, including some self-examination on the whole civility thing from the past week, & another for a little self-assigned project to learn a bit more about the Tea Party movement as Tea Partiers themselves see it (rather than through the received wisdom I have from my usual sources in media & blogs) — as best I can.  But having stayed up late last night with a political post, I’m tired & too mindfried to even respond to comments; plus I’m in need out of political stuff for a few.

Time to get my geek on to the stuff I really want to do: write.  Too mindfried for that too, unfortunately.  So instead: just a relaxed little post about where writing has been this past week, if only to remind myself that I’m getting somewhere with it these days.

I’m in the midst of reading two books at once, both having to do with consensus & collective decisonmaking.  This is as background research for Cold & Long Dark — for the Consensus government I talked about in my Building Consensus post the other day.  One of the books I’ve been reading on my iPod while riding the bus with the Kindle for iPhone app — well, how I’m reading it is less important than what I’m reading: How to Make Collaboration Work: Powerful Ways to Build Consensus, Solve Problems, and Make Decisions by David Straus.  The other book, which arrived at my door maybe a week & a half later, is We the People: Consenting to a Deeper Democracy — A Guide to Sociocratic Principles and Methods by John Buck and Sharon Villines.  I’d never heard of sociocracy before encountering this book.

Between the two of them, I’m learning one heckuva lot — & more often than not while reading, storymind is fully engaged, figuring out how to take this stuff & weave it in with what I already know about how the Consensus government of my story universe works.  But I’m glad I’ve already done as much thinking about Consensus before reading these books — because it’s already mine.  This reading is just to refine & expand my understanding, so it works better. I’ve got some other books on my “consensus” reading list too, but I’m not gonna list ’em all now.

So, Friday night went out with my friend Marcia, & exercised her ears by blabbing all over the place in my story — from Oikos, the planet my characters are terraforming in Cold, & back 300 or so year to Mars, where the very important figure of Esti Gusev is born & spend the early years of her life.  And how she came to learn of Consensus by way of an earlier figure whose philosophy influenced its formation — who turns out to be none other (to my surprise) than the main character from my older novel-in-progress, Mistress of Woodland.  And then I took Marcia here & there, & found myself surprised at how well I know this story universe… even though there’s still lots more I need to know.  But wow, it was fun talking about it.

Then Saturday I went to Side Street & wrote.  Was working on a story called “Trading Shirts” from Cold that features Bai & Boleyn — same characters as in the story “Cold” that’s been published — & got a fair headway.  This was for a story contest that had a entry deadline Monday.  But I ended up deciding to hold that story for another online publication, & decided to dust off & revise a different story from even yet again a different project called Finer, which is a fairly basic (but I hope interesting) non-SF lesbian love story set in 1980 in a small town in northwest Montana — not much different from where I grew up.  Even to the aluminum reduction plant that the main character works in.

So got that finished. I think I may do more writing in the Finer world while I continue doing some of the research reading I’m doing.  Will see.  I still need to finish “Trading Shirts” too.

So that’s where that is.

About the pin

The “Write Hard Die Free” pin in the photo at the top of this post was designed by William Spear of Douglas, Alaska. That and other great pins are available at wmspear.com.

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