Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Changing the channel

Blechta at the controls. Please don’t panic...

This blog entry isn’t about writing particularly, but then again, it sort of is.

I don’t know about any of you, but for me, there’s a day that occurs sometime in every January where the weather, the lack of light, the hopelessness of it all smacks you in the kisser with a cold, snowy, icy, damp miserable wallop. You just can’t tolerate winter anymore.

I hit that place yesterday. Oddly, since I live in Canada, it was raining. I wasn’t outside shoveling cubic metres of white stuff, or trudging down the street, trying to keep vital body parts from breaking off as the winds howled from the frozen north and windchill was somewhere south of -55. It was actually near 5 degrees (Celsius). But as my wife and I took our morning walk at 9:30, it seemed to be nearer night than day and a steady miserable rain dogged every footstep as we forced ourselves through the ordeal.

I’d had it. It was ‘wall day’ for me. Winter couldn’t end soon enough. Problem is, February is usually far worse than January. March follows, a cruel month that temps us with a briefly warm day before Arctic air masses send winter right back in our faces.

What’s a writer to do? Well...write.

As you know, I’ve recently been converted into a series character whore at the behest of my sensible agent, so I have a new book on the go. Not the one I’d originally planned on writing, but one about which I’m nonetheless excited. So, as soon as I decently could, I signed off work, switched hats and dove in.

It was heavenly. My two main characters enjoyed a swim in the warm ocean waves as they vacationed in Tahiti, after which they walked hand-in-hand down the beach to a little restaurant serving fish that had been caught outside in the surf. Wine flowed, conversation sparkled and they had a wonderful time as soft evening breezes caressed their faces.

Who cares if the friggin’ book currently has my characters stuck in Toronto in early November? What if they’re never going to be within a thousand miles of Tahiti? The whole scene was total bullshit.

But boy, did I feel better after writing it!


Vicki Delany said...

In my WiP, at the moment the character is crawling through the woods in drifts up to her knees, while the wind blows fistfuls of snow into her face, and ice drips off trees down her scarf, while well knowing she is leaving a trail a blind budgie could fallow.

Rick Blechta said...

Don't whine. We now all know how much you like crappy winter weather. Your characters just have to get used to your foibles!

By the way, I call it my BICATW (Book I'm Currently Attempting to Write.

Just thought you should know...

Jill Edmondson said...

Are the Tahiti swimmers named Tori and Rocky?

Rick Blechta said...

Nope, that's for another novel, although Tory will have a walk-on in this novel.

It's based on the characters in the novel my agent is currently shopping around in NY. She's an established opera singer (soprano) and he's her computer-wiz, up-and-coming opera singer husband.

If it had been Tory, there probably would have been a tsunami or something while they were swimming.


Donis Casey said...

Rick, you stole my title!

Rick Blechta said...

You can have it back if you pony up a few thousand.


Donis Casey said...

Enjoy it with my compliments!