If it’s late and I’m alone and the mood is right, I’ll take a knife to my own skin and push. Sometimes I chicken out. It hurts so it’s hard to keep going.
That’s how I write.
Lúnasa Days was supposed to launch a month ago. Computer failure impossibled that. I was so relieved.
Many of you believe in this story, so much that you’re helping back it. That terrifies me. The story is in me, but to get it out—how? How much do I need to bleed? There’s just me and the keyboard. Sweating, wishing for a way out.
The manuscript is one-fourth done. Only one fourth, after so much time. There was more but it wasn’t right.
In a word document are a stack of notes I call the Whiteboard. Here is a cutting:
Our character is this 28 year old who feels lost. He can’t stand working at his job anymore and he feels like he lost his youth to it. Or like he will lose it if he doesn’t get out. He is casting around for any way to strike out and just be himself. Really, he values freedom more than anything else.
So he remembers how he used to do magic rituals. It was an exciting time of his life. He was never 100% sure if they worked or they’re just in his mind but he was doing something that really felt full of meaning. So he wants to see if he can make his living that way. It seems mysterious and exciting and fun.
But he also has this guilt about it. He doesn’t know if the spells will work. He’s concerned not only about his own freedom and success but wants to help others too. Maybe he doesn’t realize that at first but then his conscience kicks in. So he is in love with this cool lifestyle that he imagines, but he’s scared to start living it.
But then he starts to have real effects on people’s lives and it causes both him and them to panic. He didn’t really expect to make a difference, which is why he felt guilty, like a scam artist.
So does that make him a fraud at the beginning? Why should we like him? Why can he deceive people so readily? He has a background in marketing so maybe he was used to spinning things. But he has to hesitate if we the audience are going to like him. Maybe this is the first time he’s ever felt guilty about spinning something. Maybe it surprises even him. Also, everyone can relate to doubt. We all doubt our abilities.
I doubt mine right now. I sit down to write this character, this week of his life, this novella—and I doubt.
I will finish Lúnasa Days. I don’t know how quickly. I sent my patrons a short story as an apology gift; I hope you liked it. There will probably be more. Short stories are easy. They don’t take so much blood. But the book cuts deep. She drinks deep.
Thank you for believing in me. I don’t know why you do it, but thank you. I find the words, here and there, and when they come you make them matter. Thank you.
My book Lúnasa Days is available on Kindle and in paperback. Get your copy here.