novel progress: chapter 30 done

Saturday, November 2:  This morning I got up early and revised Chapter 30 of my novel; the chapter is titled “Glisser un Regard a Quelqu’un.”  Add 2,142 words, for a total of 4,056 words.

I still haven’t settled on a title for the entire novel; I’ve gone back and forth with all kinds of ideas.  Today I changed it once again to: As Sure as Far-Flung Suns.  I’m still not settled on it.  I may test out different titles as I post this month.

Here’s a short synopsis as posted on my NaNoWriMo account:

As Sure as Far-Flung Suns explores the way that yearning and grief rearrange people’s lives. The story is told from the viewpoints of four middle-aged characters in Washington, D.C. during the 2002 sniper attacks and the buildup to war with Iraq; these characters in their tangled relationships struggle to find happiness and meaning in a world full of uncertainty and turmoil.

Ian loses both of his parents in a tragic accident and comes to inhabit their world, and his abandoned adolescent life, in his grief. Taking up residence in his parents’ home, his old passion for astronomy is reignited. He explores his reawakened attraction to his old girlfriend, Lucie, who is now married to Ahmed, an Egyptian Muslim haunted by demons.

Lucie works at a suicide hotline. She is lonely and fearful, and tries, despite obstacles she places in her own path, to find courage and love. Ahmed, who reads a medical encyclopedia to improve his English, is convinced an insidious disease will kill him because of a horrific act he committed in his past. He tries to accommodate Lucie in her friendship with Ian, only to have the relationship become something more than he ever bargained for.

Audrey is torn between a calling to serve God and her earthly desires. Her son Peter is a troubled divorce survivor who struggles to come to grips with his own identity. She loves labyrinths, church history and architecture, but she also loves men. She struggles to come to grips with her growing feelings for Ian, her ambivalence about motherhood, and her yearnings to connect with God.


Now that I met my challenge for today, I’m off to visit a dear old friend near Wintergreen, Virginia.  I haven’t seen Susan in two years; we used to work together as stockbrokers in Richmond, VA in 1986 and 1987.  She and I became friends as I was going through a divorce from my first husband, Bill.

This will be the third weekend in four weeks that I’ve driven south to the mountains of Virginia. 🙂

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38 thoughts on “novel progress: chapter 30 done

  1. your novel sounds very interesting, I can’t wait to read it!!! That title looks French oui? Enjoy visiting with your friend and of course the drive. guessing you’ll see some fabulous fall colors! We’re right at peak or just past it and tomorrow will be windy so bye-bye beautiful fall colors here 😦

    1. Thanks so much, Toby. That French title is only for Chapter 30, and it is explained in the chapter. The whole novel won’t be titled in French; don’t worry…. I don’t know enough French to title an entire book in French! Where is your home, Toby? I’m now near Charlottesville, VA and the leaves are gorgeous right now! 🙂

  2. Wow I’ve just learnt so much about you – stockbroker no less!!!!! I was at an International society of Investment analysts conference in Washington – ah but it was 1981 so you wouldn’t have been there.

    I share one thing with Audrey – yours to guess.

    Love the sound of it – brave writing from a male POV!!!!

    1. Thanks so much, mrs. carmichael. Yes, I was a stockbroker from 1984-1986; as it involved sales and 20-25 cold calls a day, it was unfortunately not for me! Were you an investment analyst at one time? As far as Audrey, let’s see, is it her ambivalence about motherhood??

      It was most fun writing from the Egyptian’s perspective. When I wrote it, I had never been to Egypt, and now I have and I’ve met many Egyptians, so I need to change a lot about his character now….

      1. No That was he ex I wrote to you about before – there’s a whole novel in him but he’d sue. I was the partner and was treated amazingly!
        I was in sales with IBM, Wang and Oracle. But cold calling is hard for anyone.

      2. Haha, yes there was, mrs. carmichael. A weakness for men! I thought you were hinting at one of the more unusual things about Audrey. Don’t we all have a weakness for men? Except the men, of course. 🙂

      1. Yes, it is really a great course and I’m learning so much. I can’t wait to finish my semester and start doing more serious research on publications, niche publications, and travel destinations. I’m going to California from Jan 2-13, and I would really like to come up with a story idea for that, although California’s been written about so much. As soon as my semester ends, I want to really put these ideas into action!

      2. Great, Carol! That’s the thing to do for sure. When November is over, this class and my semester and my novel, I’ll do the same. And get back to visiting everyone else…. 🙂

      3. Thanks for reminding me about this, Carol; I had already realized that. I really need to have my assignments in by 9 am on Sunday, rather than midnight Sunday. Since I went away over the weekend, I had it done by Thursday night. Sadly, I didn’t spend as much time on it as I would have liked. This weekend I’m staying home, so I can spend more time on the Tasmania assignment. 🙂

      4. I just last night finished listening to the second module lectures; it’s very time consuming, listening to all of that and reading all the handouts. I guess I wasn’t expecting it all to take so much time. Tonight I need to start thinking of the assignment. My confidence is waning at being creative enough to think of a good hook; wish me luck! Sometimes I think I don’t have a creative bone in my body. Even though I always wish I did! 🙂

      5. When I did it, I chose a topic I was interested in anyway and searched for places that fitted in with that idea. Good luck. I think it needs to be just the smallest detail and not a big affair. You’ll be fine…

      1. Sure, our lives were directly affected by random sniper hits, being one of them really close to my place (I’m sure you remember the Seven Corners Home Depot incident). Our lives were as well indirectly affected by the Iraq pre-intervention during 2002, and afterwards perhaps even more direct. The rest was only pleasant and busy daily routine, leaving good memories of Falls Church and DC Metro area in general.

      2. Oh yes, I know all about the sniper hit at the Home Depot; I’ve driven by that Home Depot many times. Well, my novel takes place during that time, so maybe, when I ever finish editing it and IF I can get it published, you might relate to some of it. Glad you had good memories of the DC area. 🙂

      3. Good luck with the publishing. I myself am about to publish a book on conflict transformation (academic stuff) and I’m confident you will find a publisher. Looking forward to read your novel.

      4. Thanks so much for your good luck wishes. I think it’s harder to get novels published than academic writing. Oh well, I have to try anyway. Good luck to you on your book too. Conflict transformation sounds just up my alley; my Master’s is in International Commerce and Policy. 🙂

      5. It was just a fluke; after I got my Master’s in May of 2008, I applied for 250 jobs in my field and couldn’t get anything. So I applied to teach English in Korea and that’s where I started. I did it just for the opportunity to live and work abroad, but it really isn’t my dream job. 🙂

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