Category Archives: Undesirable

What the?!

I missed yet another Monday Blogging?  For crap’s sake!  This does not speak well of my consistency.  Maybe the only thing consistent about me is my inconsistency.

So what have I been doing?  A lot of NOT writing.  American Legion Auxiliary, changing over to AT&T U-verse, teaching knitting, spring cleaning, spring training (way out of shape!), getting my tiny child ready to graduate high school, and all those tasks that needed doing before the list above could be done.

Sounds like a lot of excuses dressed up like reasons.

I’m not a big fan of excuses.  Now that a few big events are done, I can focus on getting to the halfway mark of Undesirable.  One of the huge positives to come out of not writing is how there’s been a book trailer created.  It is amazing!  My daughter and I have been fine tuning it, and now we need to buy the stock footage.  We reviewed a lot of other book trailers and this one is terrific.  Vicky has made more small movies since then and the kid is really super good.  I’ll have to get her to post a few on here later.

Yes, I’m all over the place in this post.  Mainly because my mind is still on Undesirable.  I’m a few paragraphs away from being done with the current chapter and I’m all like, “Write this post faster so you can get back to it already!!”  Time to obey my inner slave driver.

I Need More Sex

I’m halfway through with writing a book, Undesirable.  The plan?  To have it chock full of hot, romantic, adulterous pioneer sex.

The result so far?  Not even a kiss between the two main characters.  This is a romance, they’re supposed to at least kiss.

Not until chapter six, I guess.

So, the question on most non-writer’s minds is most likely why can’t I just force the issue?  Aren’t I, as the author, the one in control?

To which I answer, I was in control, but now I’m not.  I created the setting and conflict.  I created the characters, each with their own lives and motivations.  They’re not 3-D, more like 100-D, with that many dimensions to them.  Again, why can I not ‘write’ them what to do?

Because my work with creating them is done. It’s kind of like having adult children.  You can set things up to be easy or difficult, but in the end, character drives their actions.  I think in the best stories I’ve ever watched or read, the characters are always true to themselves.  Sam in Undesirable is a straight arrow, intent on right and wrong.  Even if wrong is where he wants to go, he won’t because that’s not who he is.  Marie, his love interest in the novel, is also an honest person.  Her feelings for Sam are growing but her love for her husband is keeping her from giving in to them.  Me?  I’d planned on them having a make out session in chapter one, and yet, it’s in chapter six that they kiss.  I’m not even sure they’ll do that, to be honest.

So now I put it back on you.  Are readers in an instant gratification world fine with extended sexual tension?  Can characters be truly that strong in a writer’s mind that they call the shots?  Is adding violence a good way to substitute for the lack of sex?

Being Accurate is Exhausting!

My biggest fear in writing anything historical is someone coming up to me and saying, “That was wrong.” Checking and rechecking everything takes a lot of time. Enough that, at the moment, I’d like to write anything that’s in the present day and familiar. Not the future, because that would take tons of research, too, into today’s technology extrapolated by X number of years.

Don’t get me wrong, I do LOVE research. It’s my favorite part of writing. But sometimes? I just want the words to flow and damned the facts. Instead, I’m on Google Earth, inching my way along the Oregon Trail from overhead, and typing out each tiny little paragraph at the same time.

You Are Here!

Who doesn’t love a clear label? And who doesn’t love a map that says “You are here?” Especially when you’re lost and all.

This is a great picture showing where exactly I’m herding my pioneers in Undesirable. Between South Pass and Lombard Ferry, there’s a whole lot of nothing. Well, sagebrush and gravel, but no water. Even if they take one of the green routes to the Green River, there are two small rivers that might have water for the people and animals. Heavy on the might, because even in July, the spring thaw had just begun in the higher elevations. Snowfall was a real possibility in the high desert. Days there are hot and the nights freezing cold.

The average distance traveled per day for people so far had been anywhere from 15 to 20 miles a day. To get through this stretch of dry, people went as far as 30 to 45 miles in a day. By the time they reached South Pass, their shoes and clothes would be worn to nearly nothing.

There’s tons more information at Greater South Pass Historic Landscape alliance, the site where I found this picture. Click on the photo to go visit them and learn more about their work. For more information on my work, try one of the menu items above, particularly the Oregon Trail tab.

From Here to the Parting of the Ways.

I’m not sure what I love most, Google, or Google Earth. Using Google, I found this video from the University of Wyoming. Why is it relevant? In my current book, Undesirable, my group of people are camping here for the night. It’s high desert country, so the nights are cold but the days are hot.

Notice how the wind is blowing her hair around? In that part of the country, that’s not considered a windy day. Plus, very few trees meant not much wood for campfires. Or for hiding behind during a bathroom break.

Anybody else reading slough as “slew?” Maybe it’s just me. 😉