Writing

Having a 4 day weekend is just about the most glorious thing in the universe. I slept past 10:30 three of the days, and generally lounged around in sweatpants until the mid-afternoon, at which point Boyfriend would scrunch up his nose at me and suggest, ever so politely, that maybe I’d like to join the world of the living and tend to my stink. I ate well, probably too well (or too poorly, depending on how you feel about gummy bears for breakfast), and spent a lot of time hanging out with friends and family. Thanksgiving was the highlight, and the day capped off with some cuddling on the couch with my nieces, watching Madagascar 3 in 3D. How was everyone’s holiday & weekend?

I also made some serious progress on le book. I schlepped my computer desk into the guest room so I could write undisturbed, though Fitz didn’t really seem to take the hint and preferred to sleep curled up on a ball on the chair right next to me just in case I decided I wanted to play with him.  The desk won’t stay in there forever, as it doesn’t really fit, but for now it’s nice to soak up all the Parisian inspiration. I’m up to a whopping 16 pages now (I’ll be expecting a New York Times book review ANY DAY NOW), and yesterday I got so absorbed in the storyline that I actually lost track of time. It was a pretty magical feeling. Though I’ve said it before, writing is honestly 20% research, 10% writing, and 70% sitting there staring at the screen. The percentages can fluctuate, but I’m slowly learning to accept how frustrating the whole process is and just surrender to it.

Also, my list of place to visit in Paris in March for “book research” is growing.

Sylvie (Mirette’s boss and the gallery owner) and her husband Andres live in the yellow building with the arched doorway and the Brocantes shop on the ground floor, on Rue Saint-Gilles at the head of Rue de Béarn. They have the top floor, with the terrace, where Andres spends his time painting. It’s a half an hour walk to Sylvie’s gallery on Rue de Seine in Saint-Germain, and she crosses the Ile de la Cité on her commute. I shouldn’t complain about book research because it means I get to spend hours virtually walking around Paris in Google Earth finding where all my characters live. Does that make me insane? Probably. Expect a full post after my trip in March of all the important locations in the book.

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November 26, 2012 / life / dog / LEAVE A COMMENT / 34

34 comments

  • This sounds like a delightful way to get things done! When I was writing, my work was much less linear at times. Bits of chapters here and there, and it was more about word counts than pages for me. But so exciting at the end of a day to have lost myself in time and have words and words and sentences and pages to show for it. This is nice. What you were meant to do, my duck. Gratitude.

    • Oh, it’s hardly linear, I don’t want to give you that impression! I’ve made the most progress on the middle of the book, with some scattered scenes and dialogue exchanges at the beginning, but it’s pretty much all over the place. I should be listing it by word count since it’s not linear, but pages feels more absolute somehow. Regardless, I have to agree with you that I finally feel like I’m doing what i should be doing. Missed you, duckie. xoxo

  • But, does she stop for pomplamoose on her way back when she crosses Ile de la Cite?

    • Sometimes, bien sur! Though she’s one of those impossibly chic French women, so who knows if she eats gelato or not. :)

  • Your thanksgiving sounded wonderful! I too got to watch kid movies with my young cousins and definitely ate well. So exciting to hear about your book! Keep at it, even if NY times doesn’t reach out juuuust yet ;)

    • I think kids movies should be a requirement after, there’s always a ton of humor in them for the adults! I was reading the Book Review section this weekend and couldn’t even imagine ever gracing its pages. Sigh! xo

  • I’m so impressed with your focus and tenacity, the book will be finished before you know it. Well done! I mean I know it’s something you love but it still takes discipline, especially when googling/researching the less exciting stuff.

    I’m finding it difficult to focus on one or even two things properly at the moment. I’ve so much stuff on that none of it is being worked on fully. Jumping from project to project can often feel like doing nothing at all.

    Glad you had a lovely Thanksgiving. A quiet weekend for me but I did get time to shop for Christmas Decorations. Yay! x

    • Aw, thank you darling! I kind of get lost in the research, it’s so easy to keep googling things and double-check that the metro really does run from this stop to that stop, etc, etc. I need better discipline about actually writing! Need to work on that. I know what you mean about working on a million things at once, it really does feel like nothing gets done. Chin up, girl! I hope you find your stride soon. I want to hear all about your new projects, too. xoxo

  • So happy to hear you made great progress on the book. Exciting stuff! I closed my eyes to imagine you sitting at your desk, writing and researching. It’s a lovely little world you’ve created with that nook. I think you should write there all the time. ;)
    It ended up being a very quiet weekend as we all caught round two of some nasty cold. So, needless to say, I spent a lot of time in bed. You’ll be happy to know that I managed to watch Ocean’s Thirteen, Sex in the City (the movie), and a Sex in the City marathon. In other words, I wasn’t nearly as productive! Ugh! Happy new week.

    • I totally want to write in there all the time! And I think I’ll keep my set-up until we have guests; it would strange for me to be in there typing away with guests sleeping right next to me, haha. Also it’s freezing down there! I put the desk right in front of the heat vent but STILL had to break out the blanket on the chair next to me. Total First World Problems. ;)

      I watched Sex and the City AND Ocean’s 13 too! I think we were watching the same channels!! That’s so funny. I was beyond excited they were on tv, it gave me no good reason to leave the couch! Hope you’re all feeling better, too. Colds are no fun on holiday weekends! xoxo

  • I think my Thanksgiving weekend was wonderfully lazy as well. I tried, but productivity was just NOT happening. I think Sylvie’s home is magnificent and can’t wait to see more!

    • Don’t let this post fool you, I was suuuuper unproductive 90% of the time, haha. Maybe more than that :)

  • This makes me so excited! This is going to be a book that I read someday and in between pages I will flip to the cover and read “new york times best seller” and I will feel all happy and picture you living in Paris working on your next book. I can’t wait until you go to Paris and come back with more pictures and hints. xoxo

    • GAH you stop that right now!! All that flattery is going to go to my head and make it impossible for me to come down from my daydream! You are the absolute sweetest. Seriously. I’ve done the research! :) I’m pretty excited about the Paris trip for obvious reasons AND now the added bonus of “being in the book” so to speak. Can’t wait to update you! xoxo

  • I think your desk looks quite wonderful in your guest room. It’s really inspiring to see how excited you are about your book and the research you’re doing for it – that’s definitely some dedication :)

    • Aw, thanks Roothers! I tend to be flighty with stuff I’m not 100% committed too, so this is surprising even me that I’ve stuck with it for so long and so fiercely! xo

  • “………. tend to my stink.”
    Haha! That’s so funny!!! I look forward to having the opportunity to use it on someone.
    Oh, wait. Perhaps not. ;D

    What a sweet little writing nook!
    Ooooh, I can’t wait to read more about your characters’ Parisian haunts and to finally read your book.
    I bet you’re all packed for your trip in March already, knowing you!

    I had a great weekend, by the way, but I’m not allowed to say why. :) x

    • What a tease!! I want to know what made your weekend so fab! My mind is running wild with ideas…haha. And thank you lovely! I can’t wait to share more about the characters as it happens. And with pictures, too!

      You could always tell your wee one to tend to her stink, but I think that might give her a complex and border on child-abuse ;) Maybe refrain for the time being, haha.

      And yes, I’m totally packed. It’s a sickness, I tell you.

  • Oh my goodness I can’t believe how much research you’re putting into the book, that’s so cool! You’ll have to put a little hand drawn map in the appendix and call it Mirete’s Paris.

    I love your little desk and bistro chair. It reminds me of Will & Grace, remember Jack used to have a bistro set outside of his front door and set up his own mini espresso bar? Hilarious. I loved that programme. xx

    • “You’ll have to put a little hand drawn map in the appendix and call it Mirete’s Paris.”
      Super idea, Annie! :) x

      • Like these: http://adventurewalks.blogspot.co.uk/2011/12/hand-drawn-maps-of-london.html

        do you know this book Chi? If not you should buy it as I think you’d love it. R’s kids have zero interest in it :(

        • Love those! That’s sort of what I had in mind. Shame E & A don’t like those books, they look so neat!

      • Truly! It’s brilliant!

    • Oh my god I LOVE that idea, Annie! That’s so perfect, I’m seeing it in my head now and it’s amazing. I’d want it imperfect, with squiggly lines and light watercolor. Who’s the artist who made your blog headers? Think she’d be up for a little map? :) I’m getting ahead of myself. One needs a finished book first, obviously. But seriously, I might hit up Süsk since she made that map of the 17eme for me!

      I absolutely remember Jack’s mini-cafe in the hallway. I loved that show so much. Do you remember the episode with James Earl Jones where Jack made him read a scene from Sex and the City and kept making him say “Jimmy Choo’s!” in higher and higher pitches? It’s the worst quality video but here it is: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3IuxVarNaf0 I die every time! Now I’m cracking up at my desk over it. xoxo

  • Erin, you’re such a great writer a book is exactly what you should be doing – you go girl – I’ll defintiely be reading that NY review!!

    • Thank you, Niki! It really feels right, which is the best part! Thank you for the pep talk xoxo

  • My holiday weekend was a good mixture of being lazy and getting some things done as well. I always don’t like going back to work after a long weekend, I always feel I need an extra day ;)

    It’s good to hear that your book is coming along! I bet that the research is fun, you virtually browsing the streets of Paris!

    • Oh, totally. I know what you mean about needing an extra day just to assimilate, haha. I need a vacation from my vacation! Just to prep myself mentally ;)

      Research is SO MUCH FUN. Don’t let this post fool you, I’m enjoying every single moment of this! xoxo

  • I don’t even have the excuse of a holiday weekend and I did exactly what you did (although I did begrudgingly shower in the morning only to change into my sweats again). I also slept late for the first time in years and I felt like a new woman! I adore you little desk area – I can practically see the creative thinking vibes through the computer screen (although if I was you, I would probably be spending more time curled up on that comfy looking armchair than in front of the desk)! Would it put pressure on you if I said I really want to read your book already? Well, oops, I already said it!

    • Haha, there is really some magical about showering and putting on fresh sweatpants! If we don’t have plans on the weekends that’s usually my go-to :) Sleeping late does WONDERS for you! Now you know why I do it so frequently, haha.

      That whole room is a total cuddle-zone, it’s hard not to crawl into bed with my laptop and keep working from there! But the chair wasn’t an option since my dog decided to claim it for himself! He stole it out from under me, haha. And don’t worry, no pressure that I already haven’t put on myself! Though I’m really happy and flattered you’re thinking that!! xoxo

  • I LOVE your desk chair!

    I pinned that desk a while back when you first showed it on your blog. I plan on incoporating it as a vanity. With a big antique mirror spray painted a fun color. (I know you just gasped at that!) As you know, all of my bedroom furniture is from ikea and black. So that desk is just a perfect fit. (Yes, I am a total copy cat!)

    MAD PROPS ON YOUR WRITING YO! Seriously though, I give you so much credit for actually writing a book.

    • Thanks, girl! The desk chair is from IKEA too! $15, a total steal, and it’s surprisingly comfortable. It used to sit at the end of the guest-bed and was intended for bags or pillows or towels. Now it just houses me, haha. I LOVE the idea of you using that desk as a vanity! I don’t mind you copy-catting in the slightest, I don’t think you get to claim furniture from the largest box-furniture store in the world, haha. What color are you going to paint the mirror? I want to be involved in the crafting stage! Do you have the mirror yet? We could totally make a day out of antique shopping, think of how much fun that would be!

      And thank you darling, but your props are a bit premature, haha. I have barely written a full chapter yet, let alone a book! But it’s coming :) xoxo

  • Writing is so much fun!!! Don’t worry, it will get better, you just need to get in the flow…. Today I wrote almost 3500 words, and I’m full of energy :)

    Good luck with your book, I know you’ll succeed!

    xoxo, Femke
    By Button

  • sounds like the perfect 4 day weekend. happy to hear you’re making progress on the book. i’m just reading that the setting is Paris. how fantastic! now is this why you are making this next trip there for the sole purpose of writing? i want to know all about this process. tell me more! xo Teri