I have been [harrumph!] tagged

By Monica, to whom wicked things will soon be done.

Here’s the gig.

1. Delve into your blog archive.

2. Find your 23rd post (or closest to).

3. Find the fifth sentence (or closest to).

4. Post the text of the sentence in your blog along with these instructions. Ponder it for meaning, subtext or hidden agendas…

5. Tag five people to do the same.

Well — this is the ENTIRE 23rd entry:

2611 words

Done for the night. And I like what I got today.

It seems so simple, doesn’t it? So complete unto itself. Writer gets good words, closes up shop for the night. How Tao.

Not.

It was written on November 5th, 2001, and the book I was working on at the time was Closer to Chaos. Haven’t heard of that one? That’s because on the 25th of November, a mere twenty days hence, I would discover the book’s actual theme, and realize that I had to throw away more than 280 finished pages, and start over with nothing but the first chapter. At that point, I would retitle the book The Wreck of Heaven (link is to the Wreck of Heaven category). This is the book that would kick my ass through a brutal three-times-through first draft and a grueling revision that would not die.

So while on the surface this looks like a happy, writer-progressing-nicely entry; underneath the shark that was going to devour about 60,000 words of work was already circling. I was doomed. Doomed, I tell you. And there I was, paddling through the open sea, carefree and happy, thinking things were going well.

Which, if you want to look at subtext and such, was a small fractal shard of a much larger picture of that year and the next three. Think Jaws: The Career. In the end, the book became something I loved. Ditto my career. But getting there …. oh, mama!

Just the sort of thing you want to think about on your birthday, too, lemme tell you.

So — passing on the madness, I tag:

Zette
Heather
Jean
Carter
Margaret

(I would have tagged Sheila, too, but she’s got three deadlines this week, and I don’t want her to hurt me.)

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About the author: Novelist, writing teacher, on a mission to reprint my out-of-print books and self-publish my new ones.

17 comments… add one
  • hollylisle Oct 10, 2005 @ 8:28

    Oh, incidentally, though I don’t have time to do many tags, I was rather pleased to be tagged with this one. It was interesting. The bitching and moaning was of the “methinks she doth protest too much” variety. Guess it’s hard to get that across without facial expressions and melodramatic sighs.

  • hollylisle Oct 10, 2005 @ 8:19

    Penalty for ignoring tags — yeah. I was given to understand that wolverines would come to your house and eat your cats. Or dogs. Or family members. Or, barring the availability of those, you.

    (If this is not the case, someone let me know. ‘Cause wolverines are about the meanest animals on the planet, except maybe for shrikes, and they scare me. Even more than the damned cottonmouths in the yard.)

  • e_Jim Oct 10, 2005 @ 2:35

    Thanks for your reply. I don’t see any value in being tagged.But like you said it’s an evil trick. Any penalty if you ignor the tag?

    Jim

  • arrvee Oct 9, 2005 @ 21:10

    Happy Birthday, Holly!

    I know I’m late. My Internet has been acting up badly lately. I’m gonna have to break down and get DSL, I guess.

    Thanks for the Charley Horse…um…tag. At least this one will be easier than the permutation Heather tagged me with.

  • Melonie Oct 9, 2005 @ 16:44

    A belated happy birthday to you. May any further tagging be gently done and less despised!

  • hollylisle Oct 9, 2005 @ 8:46

    “Being tagged” — on a weblog somewhere out there in the ether, someone puts together a task for other bloggers. It almost always involves answering a question. Said person then shouts “Tag, you’re it!” as was done in second grade. The person who shows up on the weblog and discovers he or she has been tagged then goes back home, performs the task … and then tags X number of other people.

    It’s an evil, evil practice. {g}

  • e_Jim Oct 9, 2005 @ 2:25

    Happy Birthday Holly.

    What does being tagged mean anyway?
    I use Blogger for my weblog and
    running a phpNuke site but I’m on
    the bottom end of the learning
    curve.

  • Kayla Oct 8, 2005 @ 19:32

    HAPPY BIRTHDAY! 🙂

  • enyafan713 Oct 8, 2005 @ 19:31

    Happy Birthday, Holly! I hope it’s great!
    ~Brian

  • Bridget Oct 8, 2005 @ 17:02

    To borrow from the Simpsons: “I wish you better than your heart desires.”

    Happy birthday, Holly!

  • Gabriele Oct 8, 2005 @ 16:43

    Happy Birthday, Holly.

    So it’s another Libra here. 🙂

  • Linda Oct 8, 2005 @ 15:58

    I’m doomed!! Tammy tagged me and everywhere I go, someone has already tagged the few people I know for sure read my blog and might actually see the tag. BTW–Tammy already tagged Sheila, for after she’s done with her deadlines. And–Happy Birthday!!

  • MarFisk Oct 8, 2005 @ 15:28

    Okay, done. And with an oddly appropriate result. If you’re curious, look here:

    http://marfisk.blogspot.com/2005/10/tagged-23rd-post.html

    Cheers,
    Margaret

  • Sleepycat Oct 8, 2005 @ 15:10

    Happy birthday, Holly! This is my first time posting but I just wanted to tell you that you’re my hero.

  • MarFisk Oct 8, 2005 @ 14:35

    Happy Birthday Holly! I loved Wreck of Heaven too, so I guess if you had to toss 60k,
    you certainly came back with a bang. But ouch! Hard decision for sure.

    Wow, I’ve never been tagged before…honestly, I’m about 2 weeks behind in my blog
    reading because life has just been too chaotic, so I have to wave to Val for telling
    me about it :). Now I wonder if I’ve even made 23 entries…I am new to this
    blogging thing unlike you. No 2001 entries for me :D. I’ll wander over and figure it out now.

    Cheers,
    Margaret

  • tambo Oct 8, 2005 @ 14:05

    Happy Birthday Holly!!

    So, when are we all going out to paint the town Electric Purple to celebrate? We’re all meeting at your place, right? 😉

  • Deathbyabsurdity Oct 8, 2005 @ 12:43

    Happy Birthday to you!
    Happy Birthday to you!
    Happy Birthday, dear Holly!
    Happy Birthday to you!

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