Friday, April 16, 2010

Moving on from Max and Menna

No secrets today, just flat out truth telling. I am tired. This has been a crazy week.

I have mid-terms due for school starting on Tuesday. Next week commences the kick off of my “Lost Summer” in that I am travelling more than 40% of the time this summer (exciting places, but also lots and lots of airplanes…).

And, the revised manuscript for Max and Menna is due to my publisher, oh, TODAY, and I am just not happy with the condition of it. I have three more chapters to do a deep edit on tonight, and then I have to go back and update the file. I am old-school--I have to edit on paper.

I hate to say that like it is a chore. Yes, it is a task, but working on the book is never a chore. It makes me happy, but the process is bitter-sweet.

I have been writing Max and Menna in some form or another since I was sixteen years old. Taking into account that I really don’t remember much before the age of 4 or so, that is more than half of my life. I seriously assign the act of writing this book as a personality trait, it is so ingrained in me. I’m Shauna, I’m 5’3.5” tall (yes, I count that half an inch), I have green/gray eyes, I am always a little bit fat, I’m primarily Irish and Native American, and I am writing Max and Menna. Working on this novel has sure as heck been more stable than my circle of friends, or hair color over the past 13 years.

It is exhilarating to be “done” but also sad. Much like my beloved, raggedy dog, this story has gotten me through a lot. I spent many a nights when my mom was in the hospital toying around with it on my laptop. Focusing on it got me through some of the ordeal with the blue-eyed boy. When I can’t sleep, writing this has been one of my favorite pass times.

I have three other novels in progress. I love writing all of them, and I am passionate about all of them, but finishing this story and finally hitting “send” will be a huge milestone in my life. I just hope the world doesn’t hate it.

So what do I focus on next, my dear (and one—thanks Wade) loyal blog reader? Quick synopses for the other books in progress-- I would love some feedback on where to turn my very scattered attentions now:
  • Chocolates for a Comatose Man details the wife of a coma patient who divulges to her readers how much she truly hates her husband and their loveless marriage. When he awakens, she is convinced that his amnesia is some sick mind game, and so she invents a make-believe family to test his convictions. How long can she continue to immerse him in a past that he never had? (60% complete)
  • Sleep is about a college student who grew up in an extremely strict Catholic household. When she begins to exhibit symptoms of a mental illness, her family and community declare that she has lost Christ. She is convinced she is, instead, losing her mind. She tries to balance the storm in her head with her beliefs, not really sure which one is more real, or pressing. (30% complete)
  • To-be-titled novel about Reesa, a seventeen-year-old girl who’s mother has just passed away. A breast cancer survivor, her mother died at the hand of her Oncologist’s wife, who suspected an affair between doctor and patient. Reese struggles to understand what motivates the adults around her, while coming to terms with her mother’s death, her own adulthood, and the secrets her father has kept from her. (20% complete)

And, tomorrow is the day. Tomorrow I meet Ryan and Serge, a writer and photographer respectively, both of whom I really admire. Can I do it? Can I make it through an entire evening without calamity? Feedback is always appreciated on this front, too!


  1. As far as what you're writing, finish the one you like most first. You know that if nothing else, I'll gladly read it!

    Really, what I want to know is how today went. I'm sure that it was great and you were your fun, charming self...can't wait to hear the stories!

  2. Ah, Wade... Am I ever charming? Ackwardly cute I get sometimes... but charming?

    All in all, tonight went well. I didn't make an ass of myself, which is always a plus. I had a really good conversation with Ryan--the writer-- about our books. We only talked for 2 or 3 minutes. Didn't get to meet Serg--photographer-- but had a good time.

    Anytime I am in a situation where I am nervous, the ability to get through without calamity is WONDERFUL!!