So I'm in Craftsbury, Vermont for two weeks, writing, thinking, enjoying the silence. Finding myself in blessed solitude. It's actually working pretty well.
As I mentioned in georgeha's diary earlier today, there's a waterfall (well, a small cascade) on a brook a mile or so from where I'm staying. I took a bunch of pictures of that, the woods nearby, and the house, and posted them Here.
So there's a bit of a geological question here. Me, I'm from the West, where the Rocky Mountains have sedimentary rocks only in the foothills. The mountains themselves are all pre-Cambrian granites and the various metamorphic products of granites: schist, gneiss, that kind of thing. The rock solidified underground from magma, and may have been re-melted and compressed since, before the mountains were uplifted in the late Mesozoic.
The Appalachians, of course, are much older, formed from sedimentary rocks in some kind of geosyncline folding process, if I remember my 8th-grade earth science lectures correctly. So it's not too surprising to find slate in the creek bottom. It makes for a different kind of a creek experience, since it tends to fracture into square blocks (horizontally) and thin layers, almost like floor tile. In fact it's used for roofing shingles. So imagine my surprise finding a hunk of what looks for all the world like granite beside the creek.
"Glacial sporadic," you say. The continental glaciers picked it up in Quebec someplace and dropped it here at the end of some ice age or other. So I smiled and went on up to the cascade. Part of the lip is slate, and part of it is orange or pink rock that looks just like the granite, embedded in the slate.
So, I dunno. Here ends the attempt at an amateur geology field trip.
The book plot is getting interesting. Monday I re-read the last two versions of the book, one "complete" and the other petering out 3/4 of the way through. And, um, meh. So I hiked up to the falls (having run into the landlady on the road, and she pointing out the trailhead to me), shucked the whole thing right down to the cob, and tweeted the one remaining sentence.
So now I know what it's about: staring into the abyss, knowing you can help, do some good, whatever, but with unknowable consequences.
Then I wrote a scene that has no place in the original timeline (timelines, plural, since, well, because). Which, with one more loop could be made to fit, and maybe bring the whole structure into some kind of interesting alignment. Possibly even a plot arc. There are still a few plot points to clean up, but I like it already. I can write this book, I think.
Otherwise, I'm becoming convinced that I'll survive. I have another week and a half, almost, here, alone with the imaginary people in my head. Then home for a whirlwind of activity, settling into whatever it means to be me. After.
Survival seems pretty certain. Happiness and contentment are things I'll work on at a later date.
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