Monday, February 20, 2012

I Feel Like I Can Have the Entire Universe

The day began late, a little before 1 p.m. (I work further into the early morning hours than I should, so I end up going to bed by 3:30. I have to bring myself back to a more reasonable time soon), with an important e-mail in my inbox: "How about 4 pm today?"

I've been thinking about this conversation, ever since it was suggested. It was a conversation that could either be very beneficial for my book, or could make me move on to my next book because without what this person has, I don't have a great deal to go on for my book.

Chores for those three hours beforehand: Gathering the garbages from around the house, bathrooms too, taking that and the kitchen garbage out to the bin in the garage, putting the latest recyclables into that bin; sweeping the patio and collecting the dead pine needles and putting that bag into the garbage bin, rolling the bins to the curb for pickup tomorrow, and washing the dogs' tray, water dish, and food dishes.

During all this, I'm thinking about what's to come. I need to establish that if this is to go forth, I want to be sure that I'll get my share. But do I express that a few minutes into the conversation or see where this goes before I chime in about that? I'm protective of this idea. It took me months after What If They Lived? to figure out what I wanted to write next. And the one idea I came up with before this one didn't pan out because I let the books I purchased for it sit around for weeks. Clearly I wasn't as interested in that idea as I thought I was. This is the one that makes me get out of bed every morning and get to work. Would I still have that feeling after this conversation?

4 p.m. comes and I dial the number. Time to see what can be worked out. I hope for the best, but I still need to be cautious. I've been working on this for a few months and I'd like to see it through.

You know the Star Gate sequence in 2001: A Space Odyssey? Imagine that for two-and-a-half hours. That's what this conversation felt like to me. I held on to what I want for my book and heard ideas that I hadn't even considered, ideas that could strengthen what I had already thought was pretty strong by the Airport series alone. What I learned lets me go deeper into memories that didn't mean as much before I talked to this person. I merely watched some of the TV movies that were named. It was part of being an aviation enthusiast in my teens. But to give them more attention? To show how Airport didn't just give birth to the disaster movie as we know it, but also what else it caused in the same style? That could really work!

I have to be this vague right now. I'm so excited about these new possibilities that I had to write something, but there's a lot of work ahead, a lot to arrange, a lot to plan, and an outline to hammer out. If any writer tells you that writing is easy, they're lying. But it is exhilarating when you're writing what makes you glow with pure happiness, and it makes the work a little less difficult. It's still a challenge, but it can be done!

This conversation made me feel that I can have the entire universe, and that I will write the other books I want to write. It'll still be quite a while before I can begin to write one of the chapters for this book, but as long as the research is there, it'll work. This is why I exist, and it's time to show it!


  1. very intriguing post...sounds like a great conversation and another element to strengthen the foundation of your book

  2. I knew the foundation had to be the making of these movies, especially descriptions of how the various stunts were achieved and how long they took. Plus, "Airport 1975" had the cooperation of the U.S. Air Force and "Airport '77" had the cooperation of the Navy, so there could be some intriguing stories just from those alone.

    To put it all together as it was pitched to me makes me think that this could be an even better book that I had originally envisioned, and I also need to start reading the making-of books about Superman: The Movie, Blade Runner, and The Wizard of Oz that I bought for guidance and inspiration. I want to see how the stories were told in those so I can begin to figure out how the outline should be formed.

  3. nice. you found some motivation to get your wheels turning. I need to work on this myself.

  4. Writing IS hard. That's why it's worth doing and doing well. And you can have the entire universe. If it's too big for you to carry alone, the dogs and I will help. I gave you an award today. Read my blog for details, please.


  5. Catching up on the blogs I have neglected. Apologies to have missed much, but I'm glad to have read your thoughts on writing and research. The love of the subject guiding your interest and motivating the work is what will make any book shine.

    1. That's why I'm also excited about the novel I'm working on, which turned out to be neither of the two I had originally planned to write. I still want to write both, but this one is much more important to me.

      And then reading The Presidents Club by Nancy Gibbs and Michael Duffy bit by bit this week has made me even more excited about one of the presidential history books I want to write. The information I want is available. I know it from this book. Now I have to find out and hope that I can garner the necessary cooperation, which I hope will be easy since I know I will write it fairly, and to my mind, it's post-politics, so there's nothing nuclear-like in it.