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Writing Update: February 19, 2020…

And various thoughts on books, protagonist immunity, and red thumbdrives

Writing Status: …unblocked?

I sort of hesitate to say this, but my slump from last week seems to have gone away. I am typing furiously again. And have no idea what I’m doing. But that doesn’t matter at this moment. I’m just slapping words on the page in every which direction they fit to see if they like it there.

Can you tell I have a monstrous adventure editing my stories?

I have been trying to organize myself this week…pasting every part of my work-in-progress in a clean, new document, untweaking the tangles in the timeline, making sure all the chapters have headings, finding chapters I’d forgotten almost entirely…and the work-in-progress has jumped to over 396,000 words. With headings and contents and everything.

Less thinking about that, the better.

Also got a giant red thumbdrive to finally back up all my work on so I can stop having mini panic attacks for storing literally everything in one place.

That scares me just typing that.

Other stuff?

…I have a cold.

Nothing unusual there! It’s the season, I stay too busy, yes, I had a wise mother who warned me I should have worn a thicker sweater when going outside with the Vikings to play over the weekend…

…um…yeah, my life is strange…(clears throat and hides behind mug of tea).

So in addition to lamenting the lack of tissues in my home, drinking tea from a gigantic green mug (far too much tea! I can’t seem to stop with this cold), and wishing I had a little cozy-warm dragon on my shoulder…I have been reminiscing over the lack of characters in books with colds.

Seriously though…

I read a lot, but I could only think of one! Plenty of characters come to mind–

  • Kvothe, The Name of the Wind, gets horribly sick from staying outside in the snow of Tarbean,
  • Colin, The Secret Garden, an invalid,
  • Same author, different book, Mr. Tom Carrisford and Captain Crewe, A Little Princess,
  • Oliver, Oliver Twist, he was sick often enough regardless of being shot if I remember correctly,
  • everyone in The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes who suddenly was stricken with “brain fever,”
  • various characters in my ill-organized scribblings,

None of these get common colds. It’s always something more dramatic (fever, bullet, death, anemia, revolt of magic system), and usually just clearly a device of plot.

The one exception?

Conn from Sarah Prineas’ The Magic Thief series. An ordinary, miserable, inconvenient cold smack in the middle of the adventure.

So kudos to Sarah Prineas for being willing to render her characters uncomfortable for the sake of reality. As if we didn’t love her books enough already.


Off with me to go throw tissues at one of my protagonists for being too snarky again.

And yes, probably another mug of tea.


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