Posts tagged ‘Tesora’

July 8, 2011

Ronan’s Stolen Gold Meets the Pirates Who Once Owned It

The main character from Tesora, Ronan, is confronted by three pirates. They once sailed the pirate ship which supplied Ronan with his traveling money (gold coins). They appear in his town to get the money back. They carry muskets like the one pictured below. They also walk the same swagger as this musketeer. They count on Ronan being young and afraid—they don’t count on his support from the folk in Puerto Toque.

June 9, 2011

Real pirate treasure is shown is this slide show.

Real pirate treasure is shown is this slide show. Click this link:

http://www.slate.com/slideshow/arts/pirate-treasures#all

June 9, 2011

The music in writing flows from the story itself

I don’t stand in line to buy an album of music I already own. Also, I don’t look for books that read exactly like Chekhov, as good as he was. I want something unique, a story that is specifically a new tune with a different use of harmony, and most of all: with a different rhythm. The only way I know to create such a thing is to find it in myself. My own mind is what I trust to synthesize all those elements in a story to make it all work together. The music comes from the imagined story itself, the words come from that same place. The intellectual mind is important, but not any more important than the sub-conscious or even unconscious parts of the brain. The more of myself I can access to add to a story, the better it will be. Listening to music can help (I listen to Afro-Cuban music while I write my Caribbean story), but writing is its own music so it helps me to hear it aloud . . . and to listen.

June 5, 2011

A rare picture of Tesora using an early 17th Century camera.

A rare picture of Tesora using an early 17th Century camera.

May 5, 2011

Progress is progress every day

I’m happy to say that all is going well with my new novel, Tesora. Hopefully, I will complete its rough draft by August 1st at 1:00 p.m. This will be my third novel in as many years. I love that feeling of confidence knowing I can succeed every day by making progress on it. My ultimate plan is to finish another forty before I’m done although by then, I’m sure the number of planned novels will be eighty. I can’t stop coming up with new ideas: one problem is deciding which one. The main goal is really to excel and improve with each new day of writing—it’s not a goal of perfection so much as the goal of opening up to the world in my imagination and trying to join a wider world full of imagination. Thanks, readers.

April 9, 2011

The Loneliness of a Long-Distance Novelist

Is there a lonelier task on earth than writing novels? On days when the reality I’ve invented no longer serves to fill the space in my life, I feel more than empty. And other times, compared to my imagined characters, real friends and lovers sometimes appear pale. I hung out today with four people of excellent accomplishment, talents, and wit, yet I found myself habitually going home alone and being all right with that. I often feel that only the famous and dead writers I’ve read understand how I feel, yet they are no longer a comfort to me now that I inhabit a world of my own words. Their worlds are now places in which I can no longer live, only visit. I get the impression I’ve dreamed myself into a life others envy, yet they understand only the slightest amount about the solitary place into which it exiles me. It is a weak joke to me that my main characters so often find themselves alienated and desperate to throw themselves into the life of others, yet fail to do so successfully. Perhaps that alienation is the fuel that drives me to create new work after new work. How pale is that?

April 6, 2011

From Tesora: Ronan’s Puerto Rico fishing boat

This is the boat Ronan buys to flee Las Croabas after he is threatened by thieves. It’s seaworthy enough to sail along a coastline, but not enough to survive a storm at sea.

March 17, 2011

The rough draft sticks to my skin

For me a novel’s rough draft can sometimes devolve into a landslide of research, for use beneath the surface of the story and beneath the surface of the writer. How do you know when too much is too much? Sometimes it freezes me up, prevents me from zooming ahead on the opening-up to a fast-write first draft. I do love the spewing forth of the story without too much control: the elements of discovery that occur only at top speed when the imagination and my fingers are rocking at an allegro pace. Or speed punk. But I also want so much to get the story right. Get the geography right. Get the motivation right. The character’s mind and heart. For me? Perhaps, in tribute to the Japanese I’ll do a little Shinto purification, Misogi, with waterfalls . . . write in the bathtub.

February 22, 2011

Writing: Abuse Most Pleasurable

I just spent an hour typing a new page into my novel while sitting in my underwear on the edge of my bed. I’m in bare feet, it’s ten degrees out, and there’s no heat in my bedroom. My skin is freezing. But my story is set on an island near Cuba where it’s eighty-five degrees in the shade, so I’m warm as a fetus . . . in my mind. My feet, however, are suing my brain for negligent affliction of frostbite and they want an immediate divorce. I’m hoping my heart will step in and adjudicate the matter, but it’s too busy being happy about the page I wrote. Sometimes writing is a form of abuse most pleasurable.

February 20, 2011

Plot teaser for Tesora

After a sixteen-year-old cabin boy steals pirate gold, he is left marooned, but he finds a new life in Cuba and falls in love with the daughter of a slave. His hopes for happiness turn to doubt when the pirates surround him and the townspeople must decide whether or not to fight to save the life of the only white man in town.

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