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Settle Down in There!

My sincere wishes that the holiday(s) have been happy ones for everyone who reads this. Bride and brood are off in Fresno visiting family; the decision was made that I should remain homebound for two good reasons, the first being that, with school having been closed the previous week, I got almost no work done with the kids around; and second, with the weather, there were concerns for the condition of the house. Turns out the second one was pretty accurate – I woke up the day after their departure to find water leaking through the ceiling into the ground-floor bathroom. There was a leak coming in from my son’s room directly above. Got it managed, but that was the better part of a day shot, and now the requisite concerns about water damage arise.

Have been trying to get work done. Not nearly as productive as I’ve wished to be. Wrote 12 pages of script that I’m pretty certain will have to be junked wholesale. Working on the rewrite of a long-form work, and that’s giving me a minor headache, as well. Jen and the kids return tomorrow, so the window for being exceptionally productive is rapidly closing, and that’s its own frustration. As I was getting ready for bed last night, I realized that the sheer number of characters currently vying for attention in my head right now is potentially out of control.

So I thought I’d make a list. Then I thought I’d share it.

At the moment, there are:

  1. A young twenty-something sleight of hand expert trying to figure out what to do with her life and her skills.
  2. Her sixty-something mentor wondering if his life has been a failure.
  3. A man and a woman working together on a protracted espionage assignment who have no idea the depth and breadth of the conspiracy they’re up against.
  4. A middle-aged Federal Marshal dealing with grief and loss on multiple levels.
  5. A recently-divorced FBI Agent who has no idea how his life is about to change.
  6. A man who honestly believes he’s helping the woman he loves.
  7. A woman who’s self-loathing is matched only by her skill at her job and her love for her child.
  8. A man who believes the mission comes first, and as a result, has seen his career suffer for it.
  9. A career soldier wondering how he could have been so wrong.
  10. A soldier who, bound by her honor, was denied the opportunity to serve, now struggling to find an alternate way to fight the same war.
  11. That soldier’s enemy.
  12. That soldier’s sibling.
  13. That soldier’s True Love.
  14. A genetically grown slave who killed in self-defense, and now must be put down.
  15. A very confused, and confusing, private investigator.
  16. A mentally retarded young man who is pretty much the only person around him who has the first idea what’s really going on.
  17. The two children of a very dangerous crime boss, each vying to take over the family business.
  18. The crime boss.
  19. The crime boss’s right-hand man, who’s in love with one of his boss’s two children.
  20. A four year-old who never knew her father and is beginning to think her nanny is her mother.
  21. A college student trying to figure out what to do with her life.
  22. A former Special Forces soldier trying to stop a nefarious plot in a magical kindgdom.
  23. An amnesiac thief who has made a deal with the devil for protection.
  24. A Very Bad Girl.
  25. A brilliant scientist and philosopher mourning the death of his son.

There are more. Those are just the ones shouting the loudest.

fullburl pointed me to Rachel Maddow’s incredibly kind comments about Queen & Country. May be the kindest, nicest, most flattering thing I’ve ever read about my work, all the more so as it comes from a woman who’s work I hold in such high regard.

22 Responses to Settle Down in There!

  1. lithera

    I understand the frustration of not having enough time because the window is closing and there is only so much you can do about it. It is hard, very hard, to remember to let go and breathe some time. I feel like I’m just finally back to myself after having been in this crazy whirlwind of a frenetic action sequence. Except there was very little action other than calling people and typing e-mails.

    Man, I am glad Q4 is almost over.

    I wish you the best of luck on getting done what you need to get done.

  2. richardhowe

    While I can’t ID all of those characters by any means, it is nice to know that more Q&C is coming. (I’m guessing #s 6, 7 and 20.)

  3. brigantia_65

    As if I didn’t adore Maddow enough, there have just been more cool points added to her score. :D

    And all of the headvoices sound interesting, but as always I am hoping those from Q&C get most of your attention first, pleeeez. ;)

  4. mattokeefe

    I’m really hoping that #21 is Erika.

    Good luck. That’s certainly a lot to keep straight. I’m looking forward to seeing all of them on the printed page. :)

  5. kali921

    As I was getting ready for bed last night, I realized that the sheer number of characters currently vying for attention in my head right now is potentially out of control.

    Greg, hon, most writers would be ecstatic at the proliferation of head voices!

    I think you pressed “Post to Journal” too soon. I was fully expecting you to challenge us to guess who each character is.

    1. A young twenty-something sleight of hand expert trying to figure out what to do with her life and her skills.


    15. A very confused, and confusing, private investigator.

    Oh, I know this one. WONG KAR-WAI! *beams*

    Randomly, in more serious matters, NPR is broadcasting the episode of Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me! with Barack Obama. Even though it was recorded a couple of years ago, I’m still reeling that our President Elect actually has a sense of humor that won’t be mercilessly mocked in the German press.

    Edit: I loved Maddow’s précis on Q&C. She used “determinative.” Yay for poli sci geeks!

  6. lithera

    See, I’d have guessed that 6 & 7 might have been Atticus related but I’m not up to date on those and it does work across several places now that I think about it more.

    This could be wacky fun.

  7. dewline

    That’s a lot of juggling.

    *Stare of Respectful Admiration*

  8. dewline

    You chose your word for Maddow’s comments well. She was succinct and direct, after all.

  9. richardhowe

    Watch. We’ll both be wrong. It’ll be ACTION COMICS or something.

  10. lithera

    Heh. That would be entertaining.

  11. dewline

    I’d be willing to bet on “all of the above”.

  12. tawang

    Having just thrown together a full-length play for December within six weeks while watching the 7yr old and the 4yr old boys “entertain” themselves entropy-ing all over the house, I feel your pain. On the other hand, if it hadn’t been for the voices, I probably wouldn’t have gotten it done myself…

    Best of luck! Can’t wait to read any and all of the above.

  13. kali921

    I’m a vocab geek (although I find in myself a concomitant disturbing tendency towards an increasingly limited vocabulary), and I particularly love English borrowings of French words, and “précis” is one of those fantabulous words that sounds like exactly what it means.

    Although technically I used the word completely wrong, since Maddow did actually describe her opinion of the work. But I personally usually take superlatives as fact when it comes to Greg’s writing.

  14. hannibalv

    I’m gonna crawl way out on my limb and guess that #10 is Renee Montoya; if that’s correct, 11, 12, and 13 all clarify themselves to one degree or another.

  15. cwweir

    I’m gonna go out on a limb and say that #23 is not work related. ;)

    Can’t wait to see you!

  16. admin

    It’s ALL work-related, baby…

    …to one degree or another.

    Looking forward to Tuesday!!

  17. cwweir

    A fair point. My bad.

  18. jesterjoker

    Being a creative sort means the voices in your head always talk to you. Even the really disturbing ones. :D

    15 and 16 are particularly interesting, as I’m wondering what about the detective is difficult to get!

  19. abc_evie

    This is a fun game, and gives us some good stuff to look forward to!

  20. kei87

    “A Very Bad Girl.”

    I’ve had that one bouncing around my skull for the better part of this week, but can’t seem to write whenever I’m visiting family. Although I DID have a great moment where a cool line popped into my head and I immediately wrote it down. I was at PF Changs at all places.

    And Rachel Maddow? Even more awesome.

  21. alexg119

    Ohh Cwweir–you guys are lucky indeed. I wish “natural 20′s” to you all for your upcomming endeavors.

  22. cwweir

    Hi Alex!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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