Monday, February 28, 2005

Plot: Digging Your Way Up

"I try to figure out three things up front: what the character wants,
what the character needs, and what the character is most afraid of.
That sets up both the beginning and the end
because then I know what to shoot for--
the character works toward what he wants,
not realizing he's actually finding what he needs,
but he won't get either until he faces what he's most afraid of."

--Lisa Hark

Lisa is on one of my list servs, and I'm quoting her with permission. Smart and succinct, don't you think? I mentally checked her observation against my WIP and realized they click. Good news, that.

Sunday, February 27, 2005

Sticky Hearts

First reader response in and quickly. Heart stickers on the cover page read "Be Happy" "You're Cool" "My friend" and "Happy times!"

I will never outgrow praise in sticker form.

She said: "You can make these edits in an hour! Knowing you, fifteen minutes. :-)" It was more like three hours, but no complaining. It was time well spent.

A lot of what I did was remind the reader of this or that fact pattern detail. It's a relatively long mss, and I have to keep in mind everybody else hasn't poured over it a kajillion times. Global issues included a mythology clarification, a temporal clarification, and a character-motive clarification. Some line editing, lots of smiley faces, scribbled observations and encouragement.

Things I had to research: Novocain; whether Texas is a community property state (it is).

Most appreciated!

P.S. Fiddling with some chapter titles. Might break one into two.

Saturday, February 26, 2005

Alphabet Soup

You know what I figured out yesterday about the PDA reference?

It would be really annoying to readers. The book is set in Austin and the Austin Police Department is mentioned fairly regularly.

Can you imagine having to read APD and PDA every few pages in a book? Yikes! That's just cruel and unusual.

On the flip side, that perfect place I thought I had to stick in my cut line doesn't flow at all.

It will have to go to the perfect-prose graveyard. RIP.

Also went to lunch yesterday with FH, who may be going by FY from now on, at Katz's. Someone wrote me yesterday and asked if I go to Katz's all the time. Basically, yes.

Comic O The Week: Wonder Woman #213 (moral: never mess with a Amazon in a bustier and kicky boots!). Athena is ruling Mount Olympus. Overdue, I say.

Friday, February 25, 2005

Mice With PDAs

Woke up last night at about three a.m. to scribble down a line that I'd cut from my previous revision (oh! I want it back! I just figured out where else I could put it!) and another line that would nod to today's technology.

I'm sure I'm over-thinking this, but I'm wondering if I add a passing reference to a PDA (as in Palm Pilot, not as in "public display of affection.") whether it will more quickly date the novel.

This is the kind of thing that can drive a person crazy. It's impossible to write a timeless book (unless it's all about mice or something, and even then, don't mice have PDAs these days? note to self: ask KD about the state of mice tech). And theoretically, good present-day fiction will turn into good historical fiction.

But people still mention this as an issue, and though I usually discount it as unrealistic in general, I'm contemplating it in the moment. Sigh.

In other news, Leo has figured out how to turn off the light switch in my office while perched on the desk, so I'm typing this in the dark right now.

Spooky Links

Graphic Novels Resources from the Cooperative Children's Book Center, School of Education, University of Wisconsin-Madison. Subtopics include: reviews in journals; Web sites for reviews; resource books; listserv; vendors; publishers; other resources.

Horror and the Paranormal: a bibliography of recommended books from genrefluent.

Thursday, February 24, 2005

Spider Woman

Dressed for crit group in slinky black long-sleeve shirt and matching slacks; distinguishing jewelry is a sparkly rhinestone spider pen; looking every inch the nouveau Goth princess. (Except maybe for having tacked up my hair on my head with a banana clip).

Printed three copies of T for readers, assuming they were available to take it on. They at least graciously left with said copies. Lovely people! Welcoming insights particularly on the internals.

A served chicken chili. Yum.

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Ladies Who Lunch

Had lunch at Katz's with a beginning writer who I met through the League. Quite charming and busy learning the biz. Another Chicago-Texas person.

Planning to watch "Smallville" tonight. I share of love of Lex with GG.

Currently keying in changes on T while watching "Dr. Phil" (not something I'd watch ordinarily). Along those lines, for dinner, G is serving up scallops, which appear in the opening scene of T, so that's timely. Should keep me inspired. Also seem to have a love of commas and run-on sentences today.

Am also vaguely pleased that my jeans seem to be too big; feel like the incredible shrinking woman.

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Missing Abby

Missing Abby by Lee Weatherly (David Fickling, 2004). Emma and Abby used to be best friends and share their love of fantasy and sci fi, but that was back when Karen Sipp called Emma a "freak." A new school offered a new chance to start over, to be cool, and so Emma left Abby and their friendship behind. Then one day Emma sees Abby on a bus, and the next she knows, no one may ever see Abby again. Ages 10-up.

My Thoughts

Missing Abby is a title with a double meaning. Abby is a missing kid, and Emma misses her. Much of the focus of the book is on this discarded friendship and the pressure to fit in among one's peers.

It's powerful stuff. I remember being dumped by a couple of friends, one in elementary school and the other in junior high--in both cases because the same popular bully offered them a sort of amnesty for rejecting me.

Like Abby and even Emma, I fell into that smart-kid, sci-fi/fantasy fan category of the social structure, and like Emma, I hid it from most people who knew me back then. Also like Emma, I pretended to be someone else for several years in an effort to fit in.

Now the same things that embarassed me about myself offer the most delight. For example, I write gothic fantasies and blog about new comic books. (Okay, they offered delight then, too. These days I just don't care so much what anyone else thinks of that.)

Junior high, which is now generally called middle school, is socially wretched for the most part. A book like Missing Abby, though, does a good job of putting it in perspective.

Note: I never had a Darth Vader alarm clock like Emma's, but I did eagerly await each installment of the radio production of "Star Wars: A New Hope" (my first and most successful NPR listening experience) and agree with her about Jar-Jar Binks.

Blue Ink

Just heard today that my pub date is getting pushed back, which happens sometimes. And I'm sure it will be all good and exciting when that date does come. But today I feel kinda blah.

G uses turquoise ink for his comments, which should be more soothing than red or hot pink (that's what I use), but really, it's kind of hard to read. He had a lot of good questions, though, and one global observation that I'll have to think hard about and discuss with him at dinner.

Waiting Game

G is now reading the mss for me, has been since about 8:30 p.m. So far just asked one really relevant, totally obvious logic question. Easy to answer, but again, something that was in my head not on the page.

Am reading Missing Abby by Lee Weatherly (David Fickling Books), which is an '05 Edgar finalist. By the way, if you're really into mysteries, definitely check out Bringing Mysteries Alive for Children and Young Adults by Jeanette Larson (Linworth, 2004).

I would be reading this book (Missing Abby) sooner or later anyway; it's in my stack with the other Edgar books I hadn't already read. But I'm doing so right now so as not to hover over G asking, "So what do you think?" a billion times while he's trying to concentrate.

Nevertheless, I'd really like to know what he thinks. Arg! Fortunately, Missing Abby is so far most entertaining.

Monday, February 21, 2005

Thieving Cat

About 50 more pages to go, except every time I stick on a Post-It with a very important note, Leo lies in wait until I'm not paying attention, snatches it, and runs off. This nails it, he totally likes G better.

Double Sided

The good news: About halfway through this read through, am checking for global interior journey. Making adjustments as needed. Seems to be going well.

The bad news: Only about halfway through and needing to finish, key in, and (hopefully) print so G can read for me tonight and confirm or deny my theory on status.

Had to call Seton Medical Center to confirm backstory factoid. In point of note, women have been having babies there since 1975. Human babies anyway.

Sunday, February 20, 2005

Post Z Tejas

Have discovered that SP reads spookycyn daily, so I will report that the new girlfriend (woo woo) has delightful wit and fairie-like sparkle. Am enchanted. So much so that G had to drag me away so I could get back to work. WIP snapping (Get it? WIP snapping? As in work in progress? Well, I think I'm funny.) and not in a fun way. But ya know, valid point. Sigh.

G also taped "Desperate Housewives" and "Boston Legal" for me, so am off to watch those post 10 p.m. while keying in. Hope to figure out minor but key logistical snafu. Hope to be asleep again by morning.

Things I like about KA include the fact that she calls me "honey."


Managed to read through once, took all day. There are three global things that still nag at me and one logistical one. I'm going to key in tonight though and see if G can read for me tomorrow. Then I'll know more where I am. Off to dinner with SP at Z Tejas.

6:07 a.m.

I'm noting the time because I'm hardly ever up at this hour. No worries, I fully intend to go back to sleep. I'm going to read a (gasp!) new draft today and work on smoothing the more subtle dynamics. Also adding a couple of line edits. G and I spent most of dinner brainstorming a mythology reference, which was hugely fun. Of course I have to figure out now where it goes.

Saturday, February 19, 2005

True Love

GLS went office-supply shopping and bought me back-up toner, just in case. I can't tell you how much this means to me. It's beyond romantic.

Yes, you're probably thinking: romantic toner, Cyn? Your life is sad. Wrong. Not sad, just desperate.

Despite that, I'm printing a new draft that appears to be promising.

Almost Chaos, Almost Not

Have scribbled out edits, scenes, notes for scenes, left various fragments of my brain strewn about, am looking to Blizzard the white cat for answers to whether the mss is working specifically, am not yet re-concerning myself with the whole. Still some stuff on the big to-do list but a lot is to-done or at least to-be-done tomorrow. Planning to key in and print then. Maybe start reading with an eye toward the rest.

Had lunch today with A & K. Watched "Monk." Must sleep, quickly entering brain haze with what brain bits I have left. I suspect I'm having fun, but it will be the kind of fun I recognize only in retrospect.

Thursday, February 17, 2005


Have new scenes rough drafted. Need to key in and see where I am. Hope to have a new full draft by Sunday.

Reading: Bite: Alll-New Stories of Dark Seduction (Jove Books, 2005). Contributors: Laurell K. Hamilton, Charlaine Harris, MaryJanice Davidson, Angela Knight, Vickie Taylor. Woman-powered stories with fangs. At least part of the nepharious plan is that people like me, who read Hamilton and Harris already, will be lured in to buy books by the rest. Plan is working. Yay them! Fangs-friendly folk, don't miss this one (for grown-ups).

Wednesday, February 16, 2005


Spent last night boiling the cover letter into potential to-do points. Continued on to transfer comments directly onto a fresh printout. Got to about page 183 and decided that wouldn't work. Too messy.

Went to bed at about 10 p.m. and stayed up until 1:30 a.m., repeatedly turning on the nightstand lamp to scribble some thought or another on the revision.

Spent the morning and early afternoon transferring comments onto onto Post-It notes and attaching those to (with apologies to the environment) another fresh copy.

Spent the late afternoon and early evening keying those comments into the to-do list.

Plan to begin cutting first. Took a break to pick up comics and watch "Smallville."

denouement: events following climax of a novel in which resolution or clarification takes place (paraphrasing from; in case your editor mentions it and you're not 100 percent sure what it means).

Spooky Tunes

"Music hath charms to soothe a savage breast. To soften rocks or bend a knotted oak."
-- William Congreve

It can also inspire a spazzy writer.

Yesterday afternoon, I rushed to Waterloo Records to pick up three CDs for helpful mood music: "Dracula," music by Philip Glass, performed by Kronos Quartet (movie soundtrack, Universal Studios, 1931, 1991, Universal Studios); "Bram Stoker's Dracula: A Francis Ford Coppola Film" (movie soundtrack, Columbia Pictures, 1992)(because my previous one was scratched up and temporarily lost); "The Damnations: Live Set" (no clue, but apparently local--go Texas--and the CD fell down at me feet and had a dead armadillo on the cover, which I took to be a sign).

Tuesday, February 15, 2005


You know how I was just saying I was ready to give T my full attention (as opposed to this on-and-off scribbling on global questions)?

As in only minutes ago.

As I was typing, the doorbell rang, and I ignored it because I was answering this radio survey on the phone (never give your home address; I gave the PO Box).

So His Maj comes up the stairs, "Hey, cutie, your package from Candlewick came."

Is that timing or what?

I Love Me

Yesterday, on Valentine's Day, I finished my rough draft of F&M. 15,136 words.

Timeline is a mess, need to splice in alt POV, not sure about key character's motivations, blah, blah, blah. Doesn't matter. It's got a beginning, middle, and end, so I can work on it in a more satifying way. It's even more whole than most of my rough drafts--has kind of a neat story arc. Yay me!

I love, love, love to revise, but am not a fan of first drafting. Now, I have two--count 'em, two--rough drafts in the queue.

Down it goes. By which I mean, into the file, backed up all over the place, to rest for a while.

Back to T with ferocity!

Happy Valentine's Day

Inspired by my earlier posts on Sabine/Dominic from The Seer series by Linda Joy Singleton, Jadzia/Worf from "DS9," and Willow/Oz, Willow/Tara, and Giles/Jenny from "Buffy," I received a note from a reader wanting to know my other TV/movie shipper-doms.

Some fave fictional couples from TV/movie cannon include: Joanie/Chachi from "Happy Days;" Leia/Han from "Star Wars;" Starbuck/Athena from "Battlestar Gallactica;" Catwoman/Batman, Black Canary/Green Arrow, and Oracle/Nightwing from DC Comics; and Mary Jane/Peter from "Ultimate Spider-Man." I'm also willing to admit having read some Wonder Woman/Batman, Rogue/Wolverine from "The X-Men" movies (with an adult Rogue); and Mulder/Scully from "The X-Files" fanfiction in my day (with apologies to the copyright holders).

However, my hands-down fave couple of TV today is: Schmidt/Denny Crane from "Boston Legal." Are you watching this? We're talking Candice Bergen, William Schatner, James Spader, and Betty White all in the same show. I adore Betty White.

Speaking of, a Valentine's kiss goes out to the other half of my favorite relationship!

Thought O The Day: it's impossible to be spooky while drinking diet cherry 7UP in a pink cotton dress, so I won't even try.

Sunday, February 13, 2005

Don't Die, Dragonfly (The Seer: Book 1) by Linda Joy Singleton

Don't Die, Dragonfly by Linda Joy Singleton (Llewellyn, 2004)(page includes excerpt, wallpaper for desktop, screensaver for computer). First in The Seer series. Sabine has already paid a high price for her psychic gifts and is determined to hide them. But then she has a vision, a warning, that someone is in danger? Can she still afford to keep her secret? Can she afford not to? Ages 12-up.

My Thoughts

I'm already a Sabine/Dominic shipper and can't wait to read Book 2.

Spooky Link

An Interview With Linda Joy Singleton from The Fiction Forum.

"1985" by Bowling For Soup

I was just writing a friend about waking up one day in your 30s, realizing you're really a grown-up, and this is where your decisions have brought you. Not that you can't reinvent yourself at any age (exhibit: Cher), but certainly, this is point where you're firmly up and running.

Question is, you're firmly up and running where?

I just stopped for a moment and took a look around. I love what I'm seeing. Just here, in the tiny office in my under-rennovation '20s house. Next to the washer and dryer closet. Adjacent to the cat litter room. Air purifier (no smelly-ness, no worries). Ceiling fan. Four cats--three tabbies, one snow white. Wonder Woman lunch box next to my tiara and vampy sunglasses on the shelf. Celtic cross and Donald Vann wolf painting above the desk. Wall-to-wall research for my works-in-progress. Folders of said manuscripts. Books I've written myself (my goal was to publish three; hitting that point was freeing). Hill country view (well, almost). It's a little slice of a bigger life. And the broader view is even better.

Nifty Links

Bowling for Soup has a hit song about this, "1985."

Note: remember how I was saying Greg was sprawled on the daybed watching "Star Trek" episodes? Now, he's feeling well enough to post about them. I take it this is a sign he's on the mend. My personal thoughts on "Star Trek": (1) more of a "Star Wars" person but married an engineer; (2) liked only "DS9;" (3) favorite characters: Jadzia Dax; Worf; and Vic, which is how I became a James Darren fan.

Also, roughed out another three pages on F&M. Just a couple of scenes to go on the first draft.

Saturday, February 12, 2005

Taboo: Outcasts

I just watched "Taboo: Outcasts" on the National Geographic channel. It was about people either cast from society or who, for some reason, elect to remove themselves from it. For historical context, think: accused witches in Salem or Europe. (Apparently, witches are still banished today in places like Ghuana). It talked about reactions to leprocy and other diseases.

One man was profiled as having radical body modifications to look like a lizard. Apparently, he lived in Austin because it's "a forgiving place to be different." That's true. I like that about Austin.

I'm bummed today because before Greg and I got the flu, we'd been planning to hear author/illustrator Janie Bynum speak at the Austin SCBWI monthly meeting. She moved to Wimberly a few months ago, and I'm delighted she's here.

We will be feeling 100 percent better by Valentine's Day, though. It's required.

"99 Luftballoons"

Am I the only one who thinks it's weird that J.C. Penney is featuring the song "99 Luftballoons" in its Valentine's Day commercials? I mean, it's an apocalypse song, though, granted, perhaps the most chipper-sounding one ever recorded (if you don't listen to the words). And okay, I can see love + apocalypse (at least in fiction) as romantic, but I'm a gothic fantasy writer.

Am I the new J.C. Penney demographic?

Two related thoughts: (1) I have a soft spot for J.C. Penney as my Grandma Melba worked there for 35 years; (2) It is a copyright violation to publish song lyrics on the Internet without permission.

Best comic of the week: Green Arrow #47.

Spooky people with blogs include: Neil Gaiman.

Nifty Link

2005 Nominees for the Edgar Allen Poe Awards: sponsored by the Mystery Writers of America, from cynsations with some thoughts and several related links.

Friday, February 11, 2005


I was feeling somewhat guilty that Greg had caught my flu until he took over the sunroom, which is my favorite writing space, to sprawl on the daybed, look miserable, and watch "Star Trek" episodes. Now, I'm still sympathetic, but I want my writing space back.

Undaunted, however, I did get three pages of F&M down this afternoon.

Total words: 14,029 with four or five outlined scenes to go. That'll probably put me at about 20,000 words of first draft for a manuscript that--if I had to guess--ultimately will end up in the 40,000+ word range.

I'm breaking my usual rough draft between midnight and four a.m. habit. However, I suspect that will be firmly back in place for draft two, which in many ways will be the (I hope) more fully realized foundation for the manuscript.

Thursday, February 10, 2005

It's Getting Worse

Another 2.5 pages on F&M.

The draft started off well, not that I knew where I was going, which was of course the point.

Now, though, that I'm getting near the end, the scenes are getting choppier and I'm making notes in the text about research issues that I'll have to deal with later.

What's happening is that I'm so able to see now where I'm headed that just gutting out the rest of this line-toss feels kind of ridiculous and wasteful.

I could stop now, armed with much more plot, more fully developed characters, and an almost point-by-point to-do list of what it'll take to get a halfway decent second draft. But I'm going to finish this one anyway.

It's the principle of the thing. Besides, I might discover something else.

Lettuce Scares Me

I realized last night, staring into my fridge at the wilty greens, that I often with the best intentions buy lettuce. However, I virtually never eat it. At the same time, I frequently order salads in restaurants, and I adore them. I've had an epiphany. My problem is that literally anything that slithers could be hiding between the leaves of a head of lettuce. At least with a restaurant, I know some cook has sorted through the greens first. I suppose this sounds strange, but it helps me understand how Mr. Monk could fear milk.

Read Cirque Du Freak by Darren Shan (Little Brown, 2001), the first of a hardcover mass market middle grade horror series. Has a quote by J.K. Rowling on the front. As a general rule, I'm not so fond of quotes on the front. It seems to suggest the person being quoted is more important than the person who actually wrote the book. That said, would I turn down a quote by J.K. Rowling on a middle grade novel? Um, no! What am I, crazy? More power to you, Darren! Not that that's your real name anyway. Read An Interview With Darren Shan from Time Warner Bookmark.

Wednesday, February 09, 2005


Two and a half pages on F&M. Not sure how many words that translated to. Feeling better, though still a bit germy. Staying low key.

Watched the "Buffy" where Tara is shot and Willow goes vein-y. Still very powerful, and I remember being very edge-of-the-daybed watching when it first aired. I was a big Willow/Tara shipper. Also a Willow/Oz shipper. And a me/ shipper. Speaking of Giles, check out: Rupert Giles and Search Tools for Wisdom in Buffy The Vampire Slayer by GraceAnne A. DeCandido, MLS.

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

Some Relief

Hammered out a couple of pages, which was soothing, and am closing in on the second POV voice, which is really key. Blizzy is purring on my lap. I'm wearing the white robe and he's a snow white kitty, so I'm thinking this is his version of camouflage.

Greater Pain

There's some famous writer quote about the pain of writing versus not writing, and I wish I knew who said it so I could call them up and yell at them for putting the thought in my head.

Okay, I'm sick ergo cranky.

However, it turns out that not writing is harder than it looks. First off, there's nothing good on daytime television or, for that matter, nighttime television. The only good thing I could find yesterday was a season 6 "Buffy."

Anyway, I'm going to try to write a couple of pages on F&M. Just so there's something happening and because I'm bored. It's so first drafty that the whole thing will be massively rewritten anyway.

No worries, I won't mess with T in this state of body/mind.

Sunday, February 06, 2005

Red and Raw

My nose, that is. Cold is ongoing. Achy, cranky, yuck.

On the upside, went to office supply store for new folder for the T revision. Have already labeled it, decorated with sparkly red stickers, and inserted editorial letter.

Pounded out a couple more pages on F&M. They came somewhat grudgingly, but it's clear that I must splice in D's POV when I revise. Not stopping to do it now. Needs a chart or something to interweave. Also changed the name of P to N and E to J.

Saturday, February 05, 2005

The Dead Zone

Despite cold/flu, managed a new three pages of F&M while watching the first two eps of "The Dead Zone," starring Anthony Michael Hall. (Previously made into a movie). Based on a novel by Stephen King. I liked it, especially AMH, but it didn't do much to improve my mood. That said, I'm proud of myself for getting writing done under duress.

Contemplating creating a bat-by-bat list for T like I did last round, but I ritualistically can't do so before buying new office supplies. Writers are so neurotic.


Feeling flu-ish today, though some scribbles on the yellow pad that lives on my nightstand.

Friday, February 04, 2005

Breaking 10,000

Another scene down on the new WIP; up to 10,501 words. Definitely need to splice in second POV. Will worry about it after reaching the end; probably not until after having done next revision on the farther-along mss. Really productive, optimistic!

Sweep Three

Received an email of additional revision comments that despite disclaimers look far more manageable than the last round and also include some welcome praise. I'm called both a "great reviser" and "brilliant," which, as I said in my reply, makes me a (blood) sucker for more. Anyway, all totally expected since we were so ambitious in our last sweep. In many ways, it's like an all-new story. A better one, at that.

I can't wait to dig back in, but I'm mulling first while awaiting the marked mss. I think it'll be more clear what she means if I can see it in direct context of the print out. Very smart, thoughtful editor. I'm optimistic that the book will be all it can or at least as close to that as is reasonably attainable.

Right now, I've stuck one scribbled Post-It onto the letter. I'll be picking it up and putting it down, I'm sure, over the next few days until the mail arrives.

Continued on with the new WIP. Still fun. Somewhat convoluted political landscape, but I did that last time and have since clarified things. It's just brainstorming, I think, so I'm not about to hem myself in so early on. Who knows where a stray thought may lead? WC: 9,765.

Thursday, February 03, 2005

Seeing Red

But in a good way.

Rough draft WIP is up to 9,324 words/43 pages.

Received email of revision letter on under-K WIP. Is also sending back marked-up copy. Will do some translating of letter into notes but not sure whether to wait for mark-up to dig in. Hm. More on that later once it's had a chance to sink in. Overall reaction: positive!

Am about to wash "the reds," as in all my pink, orange, and red clothing, which is indicative that my laundry is totally caught up. Stunning.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Love At First Bite

Remember that movie, "Love At First Bite"? George Hamilton as the vampire. Talk about your genius casting. I have to rent it. No, it's not great cinema, but it has a certain kitsch value and a 1970s soundtrack, which I can't seem to track down.

Anyway, that's where I am with my WIP. Love it at first bite. I'm up to 8,133 words, which is still only 33 pages. I made the strategy call/mistake of reading through up to this point from the beginning last night and scribbled out a scene.

I have notes for the next one. Extensive notes. But it's really high energy, high drama, and I'm just not today. I'm blah.

Tomorrow, however, I'm lunching with one of my more thought-provoking pals, so I expect to be up and roaring for it.

Nifty Link

The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

Talking Too Soon

I almost told an author friend today what my new manuscript is about, but then I stopped myself. Not because of her or it but because it's too early. I have told my husband and my immediate in-person readers and my mama. That's all fine. But though I've actually read rough scenes to His Maj, the rest just have a title and a general hook. By the time we get together next, I should have so much down that I'm more confident and revealing.

You see, it sounds stupid. All concepts/plots/characters decribed aloud early on sound stupid. Take "Romeo & Juliet": two kids from enemy families fall in love and then commit suicide. What a downer! Who'd want to read/see that? You get the idea.