I Have No Idea What I’m Doing With This Novel



by Shelt Garner
@sheltgarner


I really have no idea what I’m doing with this novel. But the outline I’m working on keeps drifting towards something I hope to be very pleased with, so I keep going. I’ve finally reached the point where I fully understand that writing a novel is a marathon, so just because a solution to an immediate problem won’t come to me right away, doesn’t mean it won’t soon enough.

Right now, I’m doing a lot of reading. They say if you have enough time to write, you have enough time to read. So I’m grazing a lot when it comes to reading. I have a number of books — a small library, in fact — of books I hope to read over the coming days to improve not just the general conceit of the novel, but the characters who in habit it, as well.

But, like I said, I have no idea what I’m doing. Yet I do hope to start writing again soon enough. Absolutely no later than July 1st. I am going to have to do a huge amount of reading to get to the point where even the outline is as good as I need it to be before I go to the next step of fleshing out individual lines in the outline.

I look over what I have done of the outline and I’m very pleased. I’ve made considerable progress on the outline in large part because I am no longer attempting to draft off of Stieg Larsson. I’m telling my story, not his (which I was doing on a structural level.) But I continue to use his book The Girl Who Played With Fire as my “textbook” as to how to write a novel.

But I definitely need to read more novels, just in general. And watch more movies. A whole lot more movies. I saw Chinatown for the first time recently and the ending left me shook. Anyway, I really need to be willing to go outside my creative comfort zone more.

Development Struggles With My Novel’s Female Romantic Lead



by Shelt Garner
@sheltgarner


I started off wanting my novel’s female romantic lead to be someone like Alexa Chung. Then she gradually evolve into someone more like Jodi Kantor. Now, she seems more inspired by Crooked Media’s Erin Ryan.

The reasons for this are simple. Chung is too much of a celebrity to write easily and, besides, what would she do? It’s difficult to stand around being gorgeous and witty in a novel. Her character needs to be active in the story. Meanwhile, while the actual human being Jodi Kantor probably has a lot of character, my writing isn’t good enough to portray the type of person she is (very smart and intense) without her character overshadowing the hero. So, now, I find myself thinking about using Erin Ryan as inspiration.

Ryan is very smart and has a lot of spunk. She’s also a bit younger than the other two women, so that affords a different dynamic than might otherwise exist. The dynamic between men, women and age is something you really have to think about seriously if you’re trying to write a novel that’s believable.

None of the women I mentioned would sit next to me in a restaurant. I can’t help how old I am or what I look like. I am who I am. I mean well and can tell a good story. It’s their loss if they think I’m just middle-aged creepy weirdo.

Anyway, my novel’s female romantic lead is now a combination of Alexa Chung, Jodi Kantor AND Erin Ryan. But, remember, while I can articulate a vision pretty well, my writing simply isn’t what it could be. So, there’s every reason to believe that while I can explain to you my vision for the character, should you actual read the character in the novel, you won’t be able to see the connection as clearly as I’ve stated here.

Who knows.

Things Are Still In Flux With This Novel



by Shelt Garner
@sheltgarner


As this novel’s story grows stronger, I realize some things just don’t work. Sometimes, some pretty big issue stare me in the face for a few days until I figure out how to fix them.

Right now, I have a whole slate of fairly large issues I have to deal with. I’m going to sit down this evening and explicitly state what they are so I can hopefully fix them. I’m quite pleased with the state of the novel right now (it’s just an outline right now) but I have to finish this stage first before I can sit down and start to write.

Or, more specifically, before I can begin to flesh out the individual lines of the outline into individual scenes descriptions that I can use to write scenes with. But the key issue is to just keep going, no matter what. I know I’m being fussy, but I’d much rather be fussy now and have a great product to use as a starting off point than fail — again — to finish anything of note at all.

I know I shouldn’t talk about what I’m working on, but I can’t help myself. That’s who I am. I love to talk and write and I have no friends, so here we are.

Idle Rambling About The ‘Wind of Change’ Podcast, #JodiKantor, #JessicaAlba & The #Novel I’m #Writing



by Shelt Garner
@sheltgarner

Some thoughts.

My Novel’s Female Romantic Lead As Twitter Liberal



by Shelt Garner
@sheltgarner


Every story needs an outsider to serve as the proxy for the audience. They ask questions that you need to answer for them. For my story, I’m using someone inspired — sorta — by someone like Jodi Kantor. I’m not a good enough writer to properly represent this type person, but in general the novel’s female romantic lead is meant to be, essentially, a Verified Twitter Liberal.

There are some problems with doing this. One is, I fear Twitter Liberals will like this character more than the actual Hero if I’m not careful. I know the mentality of Twitter Liberals well enough to fake it in a character, but I’m nervous that if i do too good a job, they’re going to be more interested in my female romantic lead than, well, my Hero.

But the point of using a Twitter Liberal as my female romantic lead is to prove a point — in the end, we’re all human. That, and the fact that having a character inspired by Jodi Kantor fall for a character inspired by bonkers me is very, very funny to me. It’s both a challenge and entertaining to me as I develop to see if I can pull this otherwise surreal relationship off.

But, again, it’s going to be a huge challenge. Everyone thinks I suck. Everyone wants me to fail. Everyone is looking for some reason to make this all moot. But I believe in myself, nonetheless. I think Ms. Kantor has looked at this Website and found me, shall we say, lacking. I can’t help what a kook I am (using her metrics). I am who I am. I try my best to be the best person I can possibly be.

Anyway, things continue to move quicker with development.

I’m quite pleased.

Biden’s First 100 Days



by Shelt Garner
@sheltgarner


The likelihood that Biden will have a “100 Days” is equal to the likelihood that the Senate was ever going to vote to convict Trump: 0. Trump is going to be the United State’s Gorbachev, only in reverse: he will destroy freedom and instill decades-long tyranny.

Having said that, all I can say is if Electors manage to get over their physical fear of being murdered by MAGA and they vote for Biden, that the first few weeks of his administration will simply be trying to figure out how to physically get Trump out of the White House. Oh, and there’s going to be violence –lots, and lots of violence.

There will be massive, rolling political violence on the part MAGA. So much so, that that violence, not COVID19, will be the biggest story of the year. I could see a number of beer hall putsch across the country — especially in places like Michigan and Virginia. Trump will stoke this violence from the moment he loses the popular vote until well after Electors vote against him (if they do.)

So, pretty much the first 100 days of Biden’s highly unlikely administration will simply be combating massive MAGA political violence. He might have to dodge a few QAnon coup attempts along the way, as well.

And it doesn’t matter, long term.

Any number of would-be Republican dictators will be waiting in the wings to do the things Trump was too incompetent to do.

Down The Rabbit Hole



by Shelt Garner
@sheltgarner


First, let me get some things about of the way. Because of macro, existential issues with the United State on a political and sociological level, Trump could murder Joe Biden live on Fox News and nothing would happen. Nothing. Trump would simply bribe Electors to vote for him and get his Constitutional Convention soon afterwards.

So, honestly, there’s nothing that could hurt Trump politically at this point. Maybe if Trump was directly blamed for the DPRK vaporizing Alabama, that might do the trick. Then the Senate might put country over party. But even then, it’s debatable.

Thus, anything that might otherwise harm Trump politically is simply a lulz. And, yet, my curiosity is piqued by a celebrity law firm that recently got its files hacked. The hackers claim they have damaging information on Trump, the law firm says they’ve never worked with Trump.

As such, it seems as though we’ll find out soon enough — the hackers claim they’re going to release the files on Thursday. I will note in passing that someone in Singapore of all places is interested in some of my writing on this Website about Trump being suspected of getting a model pregnant then forcing her to have an abortion.

It makes no sense that the hacking and the (now proven false) accusation could, in anyway, be connected. There are plenty of other reasons why someone might be interested in that information. It’s just curious.

‘Spooky’



by Shelt Garner
@sheltgarner


When I was living in Seoul, I occasionally would get a weird feeling that someone I was interacting with was….a bit…spooky. Whenever you suspect you’re dealing with spooks, you come off sounding like an crazy person because typically the average person doesn’t run into them.

But the thing about Seoul when I was there was there was a huge military base in the middle of the city. So, every once in a while when I was DJing at Nori in Sinchon, I saw older guys in the audience who just did not fit in. I have an extremely active imagination and so I would stand there, behind the bar, and wonder…are those guys spooks?

The only reason why I even bring this up is I’m listening to the “Wind of Change” podcast and it seems to fit very much in how I view the world in general — “normal” people are way too quick to assume that that just because someone is a kook that they couldn’t possibly have anything of merit to contribute. I am finding a lot of inspiration from the podcast as to how to come up with some out-of-the-box ideas for the novel I’m writing.

It’s this tendency that really bugs the shit out of me about successful Twitter liberals who look down their nose at me because I’m a bit “touched.” I often up come up with rather fantastical ideas. But at the same time, I occasionally do actually figure things out correctly — COVID19 being a prime example. I know why they do this — they have a vested interest in doing things “the right way” and if you don’t fit that metric, then, well, fuck you.

Anyway, I generally have a positive view of spooks these days because, well, we have a mad, tyrannical American Caligula hell-bent on destroying the nation I love and it seems as those if there really was a Deep State, they would be the good guys. Trump is actively trying to replace these good guys with traitors and sycophants, so who knows where things will end up.

Building A Mystery



by Shelt Garner
@sheltgarner

After what feels like a very long time — but really is about 18 months — I’ve finally come to the make-or-break portion of development: the mystery. I know what happened at the center of this story, but now I have to figure out how someone would try to unravel it.

So I find myself cramming a number of investigative reporting. I’m reading Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey’s “She Said.” I’m reading Ronan Farrow’s “Catch and Kill.” And I’m listening to the Crooked Media podcast “Wind of Change.” The latter is interesting because it involves music and the CIA. Which, given the conceit of the novel, is very useful. The more I listen to it, the more I feel I’m going to have to give it a shoutout in the Author’s Note.

But the major issue is I’ve come up with a very complex situation that I have to unravel slowly through investigation. I have to think of different ways to do all of this believably. But it’s also all very much outside my comfort zone. Even when I was a reporter, I wasn’t a very good one. So, I have to really learn a lot of things about investigative reporting that I know nothing about.

And, yet, that’s kind of the crux of the story. The part I don’t know anything about.

I have a huge amount of reading to do about character, investigation and leadership — just to name a few things. That is going to slow me down some, but hopefully not too much. I’m still on track to start writing again no later than June 1st.

There Will Be Unprecedented Political Violence In The Fall



by Shelt Garner
@sheltgarner

When the history books are written, it won’t be COVID19 that 2020-2021 is remembered for, it will be the waves of political violence that will terrorize America.

The death toll may grow so shocking that we will all turn our heads in shame.

It will likely be 40 years from now, of course, because, lulz, it will all go down the memory hole in Trump’s second term. AOC will have to overthrow House Trump in 2060 in a popular uprising before the true extent of the MAGA violence that destroyed the United States will ultimately be understood.

Trump will be on Twitter egging MAGA on during all of it. His goal will be to get a second term and he will get it. Or, if somehow, miraculously, Electors don’t vote for Trump, then Trump will order MAGA to murder even more people as we struggle to figure out how to get him physically out of the White House.

And even if we do get him out of the White House, a new MAGA Deep State will do everything in its power to bring down the new Biden Administration. And, in the end, it will be President Tom Cotton or President Mike Flynn or President Mike Pompeo who ultimately ends the Republic.

It’s over. Get out while you can.