It is absolutely freezing in Thierry’s basement, where our computers and workstations are. I got tired of shivers and goosebumps, so I took his laptop out to the backyard to finish my work on Chapter 37.
Chapter 37 is the very last chapter of the book. We’re almost done.
Well, no, that’s not precisely true. We’re almost done with the first draft. Now that I’ve completed my first edit of each chapter of the book, we need to go back through the entire book, chapter by chapter, and to check for consistency errors; things in chapter one that no longer make sense based on edits we made in chapter 14, etc etc. I have this sinking feeling that the type of car the protagonist owns changes at least once per chapter. Also, I think there is one character who has three different first names.
This mosquito will not stop biting me. I am trying not to think about the zika virus, which my brother Daniel assures me is something that I should absolutely be thinking and worrying about. Maybe I should get some bug spray…
Chapter 36, which I finished about twenty minutes ago, took place in a hospital. Like Nabokov (my favorite author, for anyone who doesn’t know, which is probably all of you except Leandra) Thierry has a tendency to get it right; his scenes are visceral. The sights, sounds, even the smells that he describes really bring you into the scene…and I hate hospitals. I hate them, and I always have. I’m pretty sure that neither he nor I had a ton of fun with Chapter 36, but it’s a good chapter; well executed. I give it my editorial stamp of almost-full-approval.
There were a few sentence fragments that I had to fix, and the man continually insists on using commas when a semicolon is more appropriate…but I digress.
In one week, I go back to work full time at the College Board, meaning that I will no longer be available to edit during the day, as I have been for the past few weeks. On August 13, Thierry and I go to New York to pitch the book to his agent, Philip Spitzer, and so it would be great (read: absolutely mandatory) if the rewrite were completely finished by then.
Something in Thierry’s pond is making some sort of “wheeeeeee” noise, and I’m certain it’s not the goldfish. I am intrigued, and a little unfocused.
I have been coming down with a cold for a few days, and I’m not feeling at my absolute best, but it’s crunch time and we need to finish this book by Sunday at the very latest. I am NOT going to get seriously sick right now, and if I do I’m certainly not going to admit it to myself. Tomorrow we’re going to take a field trip with a printed copy of each chapter. He’s going to read it aloud while I edit on the laptop. I may try reading some of it aloud myself, tonight, after my meeting. Who needs sleep?
Oh no, one of the fish is floating in the pond…it’s a dead fish. That’s so sad, we just bought those! Poor fish. Eek, something is tickling me, there’s an ant on my foot!
…okay, this isn’t working. I’d better go back inside or we’re never going to get anything done.
I leave you with this; the last paragraph of chapter 37 (the final chapter) is absolutely brilliant.
The beginning may need work. Excuse me. I have things to do.