Update from Train/Novel

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I am right now sitting on a train going backwards. This is not the same as sitting backwards on a train going forwards–that is, upon a back-facing seat.

This is sitting on a train that is, as it were, backtracking.

In this case, although we have all paid a substantial premium to take a train that is supposed to be faster and more reliable than the other trains on this line (in other words, we are on the Acela); we are hampered by an engine malfunction and are undergoing some kind of backwards maneuver to allow the back (functioning) locomotive to take over for the front (problematic) locomotive.

Ah. And now, we are stopped–with a dirt and gravel slide out one window and a stone wall on the other.

It reminds me today of noveling–i.e. trying to finalize and publish a novel.

Those who follow this blog may wonder–oh yeah, wasn’t she talking about that months ago?

Oh great. So, now we are moving backwards again–past cheery penguins and a worried polar bear painted on the side of a parking lot–they have big black gaps in their middles where the walls break to ventilate exhaust.

As in, yes, I was talking about this months ago.

The conductor, by the way, said that this delay would take about ten minutes, but it feels like at least fifteen. The good news is that we are moving quite quickly now; unfortunately, all passengers agree that we are still heading in the wrong direction.

So, about that novel.

Finalizing, publishing, seems to be one of those things ready any minute now, only not. This is my fault. Small corrections take an unduly long time as I just can’t bear to attend to them. (And also because I always sense that I should instead be doing major corrections.) I feel as if I’ve lost all sense of discrimination about the stupid thing–i.e. is something boring? Flowing? Awkward? Good?

By the way–we have been going backwards now for about twenty minutes and really fast too. (Since when do train conductors feel that they have to live out my metaphors!)

One of my problems now is deciding about the formatting. The paragraphs look way too tightly spaced on the page. I feel like I can hardly read them. On the other hand, when I pull books off the shelf and look at them, they seem to have similar tight spacing. Have I never noticed this before in books off the shelf?

By the way, it turns out — all passengers now agree–that we have NOT been going backwards for this last speedy half hour.

On the other hand, the train will be about an hour late.

Above is the picture I did for the novel’s cover. (All rights reserved.) I’ll save posting the actual cover till it’s ready. Any day/week/month now! (Ha!)

Explore posts in the same categories: iPad art, Uncategorized, Vicissitudes of Life, writing

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7 Comments on “Update from Train/Novel”


  1. Your cover is brilliant. And you are almost there! Any day now! Yay!

  2. brian miller Says:

    it is def a cool collage for the book cover…and hey two steps forward and two steps back….as long as you area little further along you have made progress right?

  3. Mama Zen Says:

    Very cool cover!

  4. hedgewitch Says:

    This cracked me up–the conductor helping you live out your metaphor–as you say, not always that helpful and certainly not as poetic and all, as merely writing one. ;_) I know what you mean about getting to the point where you just can’t tell any more about your opus–when I get to that point I have to stop, or I make a total mess.Good luck with it,k, and have as easy a week as you can.

  5. Steve King Says:

    Good luck with the final edits…I hope all the bad karma is wrung out of AMTRAK. I’ll be traveling down tomorrow!

  6. claudia Says:

    what a journey…! ha – love the train images and love that you take it with a good portion of humor…smiles.. the book cover looks good – and seems like the train is on its way now…


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