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Tuesday
Mar312009

What was he thinking?

     I had the most extraordinary writing teacher when we lived in Chicago: smart, kind, patient, insightful. He is included in my Acknowledgments at the end of Getting Out of Dodge, for "teaching me more than anyone else ever has." It's the truth, and no small accomplishment: like teaching an old dog a new trick.  

     In any case, when I was workshopping GOOD, this miracle worker used to ask me things like: "What was Leonard thinking?" "Wouldn't Sally have had (such and such) on her mind?" By which he meant: Unless your characters are experiencing short term memory loss, their residual emotions, in the wake of some important plot twist, along with the accompanying thoughts, must not be glossed over by the author.  

     So today, as I started a new chapter (always a twitchy experience), and took off, as I often do, in the wrong direction, I suddenly realized that, hey! If I were a 15-year old boy, who had just had his first romantic encounter, I probably would not be giving much thought my friend, Prince, and his broken wrist. Likewise, when my father asked me at supper, "Henry, has your day been productive?" I would, most probably, grin like an idiot, and wonder when and where Lydia's and my next rendezvous would take place. Right?

     And now, knowing how you, the reader, craves trouble, Trouble, TROUBLE, I'm currently busy throwing roadblocks up in poor Henry's way.  

     Thanks again, F! I miss you!

     Happy Trails,

     Julie 

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