peeking in on some pages

I’ve had my manuscript counter sitting over there on the sidebar for months (go ahead, scroll down; I’ll still be here when you get back), and the number has barely budged. I thought having it there would pressure me to write the second half of the book I’m working on. Hah!

I know that I should force myself to get up even earlier and just write those few pages a day that all the well-respected writing authorities assure me will mean a finished first draft in no time, and yet, no pages in months.

There are tons of excuses, as there always are when you aren’t doing something you know you should be doing. The biggest one for me is that other things like work that pays the bills gets in the way–and when work that pays the bills is other types of writing, well, the last thing I want to do is sit down and write in my “free” time.

Poor me, I know. I wish I could channel some of the enthusiasm of Christina, but for now, what I’ll do is play along with something I saw over at Nova’s place, Distraction No. 99.

After all, the first step in The Writer’s 12 Step Inspirational Program is to admit that you are a writer. So here I am. With the paragraphs to prove it.

Turn to page 123 in your work-in-progress. (If you haven’t gotten to page 123 yet, then turn to page 23. If you haven’t gotten there yet, then get busy and write page 23.) Count down four sentences and then instead of just the fifth sentence, give us the whole paragraph.*

*Since I like to make my own rules, I’ll give you a paragraph from pages 23 and 123 of the same


Page 23:

Just as that thought occurred to me, a light went on in Frank’s kitchen. Are you kidding me? Daisy couldn’t have woken him up. And anyway, he must’ve gone through this hundreds of times when Bianca was alive. Don’t your sleep patterns adjust to these sorts of things? The rain bounced off Bianca’s umbrella lightly but steadily as I turned my whole body to face Daisy. I thought maybe she would pick up the pace, fearing Frank’s wrath. Instead, I saw only the swaying tail of my new best friend as she trotted toward Frank’s kitchen. So much for being afraid of the rain.

Page 123:

But there was no time to think. I opened the glass doors of the china cabinet and felt around as much as I could without disturbing the various pieces of crystal waiting to clang together. Ah! There was a key in between two glasses. I tried to pry up the jagged edge, but just as I had a grip, the ceiling above me, which corresponded with the top of the steps, moaned. Anthony was coming. I pulled back my hand, shut the doors, and swiped my coffee mug from the dining room table just as he rounded the corner.


Phew. Now that wasn’t so hard, was it?


[tags]writing, writing fiction, memes[/tags]

14 Beans of Wisdom to “peeking in on some pages”
  1. Giulia

    Don’t feel bad… at least you were able to supply us with page #23 AND page#123! 🙂

  2. alexmom

    Michelle, I wanted to keep reading…… keep going. You write beautifully and I’ll look forward to an autographed copy :>)

  3. Waspgoddess

    I want more, more… This was an excellent way to get our curiosities going. I’ll definitely buy your book when it’s out.

  4. Judith in Umbria

    Ahhh, fiction! Just sit and write. If it is shit, throw it out. If it isn’t, work it over. Nothing works like work.
    I am currently writing a proposal for non-fiction. Never before approached that animal.

  5. sognatrice

    Thanks for the support ladies 🙂

    Judith, of course you’re right. But were it so easy to just sit and write! Best of luck on your proposal!

  6. The (Mis)Adventures of a Single City Chick

    You can do it! And don’t feel bad, about being blocked. It’s taken me three and a half months to get my plot figured out. I’ll try to remember this weekend to email you that “creativity spell” I got while in Salem. Seems to have worked for me last week. 😉 Good luck!


  7. Rose

    Such tension in both paragraphs!
    It’s amazing how just two paragraphs can give you such a taste of the whole work.
    I’m with everyone who can’t wait to read the whole thing!

  8. goodthomas

    I am stuggling with the second half of mine as well — tough to get the energy but also the “same voice.” Good for you that you are where you are and that you are pluggin along. These bits you posted are wonderful. Keep going!!

    And speaking of beautiful writing, how sublime the seaside scribbles were, one in particular – “You are my life. Thank you for existing.” Wow.

  9. Tracie B.

    wow, all you bloggers are moonlighting writers! not me…just a blogger 🙂

    keep up the writing y’all!

  10. Wendy

    Just a blogger here too but I liked reading the snippets you gave us.

  11. nyc/caribbean ragazza

    Can’t wait to read the rest. Don’t put too much pressure on yourself regarding the second half of your book. You will re-write the whole thing over and over again anyway.

  12. Shan

    Wow! I want to read more.

  13. sognatrice

    Thank you, thank you, thank you all for your support.

    NYC, you make an excellent point 🙂

  14. BecsLifeOnline

    You will let us know when it’s available to buy won’t you??? 😀

Michelle KaminskyMichelle Kaminsky is an American attorney-turned-freelance writer who lived in her family's ancestral village in Calabria, Italy for 15 years. This blog is now archived. 

Calabria Guidebook

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Homemade apple butter
Green beans, potatoes, and pancetta
Glazed Apple Oatmeal Cinnamon Muffins
Pasta with snails alla calabrese
Onion, Oregano, and Thyme Focaccia
Oatmeal Banana Craisin Muffins
Prosciutto wrapped watermelon with bel paese cheese
Fried eggs with red onion and cheese
Calabrian sausage and fava beans
Ricotta Pound Cake