I love my writer's group.
Met with them Saturday for our monthly enclave. We critted. We chatted. We laughed. I whined. They sympathized. It's good to go hang with like-minded people, sharing an activity you all enjoy, where they listen to what you say and act like you know what you're talking about. Even if they don't agree with you. Everybody should have a place like that.
It's also very cool when they say matter-of-factly that I need to get used to editing screenplays because my book will get made into one in the not-too-distant future... and then someone else counters with, no, they'll take my book and process it into blockbuster pulp--but at least I'll get the rights check.
And then there was the part when I mentioned I had an idea for "Steampunk Quinn" and their faces all lit up and they went "ah!" That was extremely gratifying. They never were particularly fans of Quinn Taylor, in the old manuscripts, but they have more faith in me now. In some ways, I think what crippled the Quinn Taylor stories was my tendency toward Victorian restraint and archaic morality--things I no longer suffer from, so the anachronistic transfer is going to be interesting.
I took my own advice this weekend and printed out a fresh new hardcopy of Trace. Everybody took a section and skimmed as fast as they could, reading the bits where I had flagged the updated Boz sequences. The consensus was that I had done good things updating the emotional arcs. And now that I have a hard copy I'm better able to sit down and SEE the damn thing, as a whole. I just can't read on the screen the way I used to.
I have bits of Horseflesh yet to finish. I am resolved. I shall continue to work every day, away from my sewing room whenever possible, away from the house if I can manage it. I will jot down notes, outlines, and scenes longhand before I go to bed at night, so I have something to work on the next morning. I will stop second-guessing myself. I will accept that even when the words don't flow like wine, even when the muse isn't singing in my ear, what comes out on the page is generally pretty readable. I will put down words even when I don't feel like it. I will finish this thing.