Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Querulous Query

Still. Working. On. The. Query.

Here's the challenge: hook the reader, but don't take too long. Summarize the book but don't give too much away. Demonstrate a plot arc and justify the story being 110,000 words. Tease out what the story's really about. Hint: it's probably not what you thought for the past year.

Fortunately, even though it's not quite about what I thought, it is about SOMETHING. And that's what the query focuses on: the main character's view of himself, how it changes, and how he feels about it changing. Oh, and the titanic battle of good and evil.

But! Lest it be thought I spend all my time double-checking the spelling of "querulous" (nearly missed that second U) I have also managed to "work on the boat" by poking querulously at camel crickets and ordering ungodly amounts of expensive screws.

Silicon bronze screws, to be precise. The boat's made with wood, and stuck together with epoxy, and in many spots also held together with screws (and sometimes small bolts). I use silicon bronze because:

a) It's the best. Hands down. It will not rust, corrode, or suddenly fail.
b) It's beautiful. These screws look like jewelry, copper-gold and heavy.
c) Although the glue is not likely to fail, if it does I rather like the notion of a mechanical fastener as backup ... and I rather like the idea of not having to worry about it. See a), above.

I also ordered the first of many inspection ports. This is a circular opening about six inches across, which enables you to reach inside the many storage areas of the boat (and retrieve water, beer, binoculars, recently published book about the titanic battle of good and evil and one boy's evolution of selfhood, spare line, etc.)

It's not time to install the inspection ports yet, but it's time to cut the holes out in the boat, because it'll be easier now then later, when everything is at funny angles and not clamped to my workbench.

I wonder if I could train the crickets to mix batches of epoxy for me. And then jump into it and perish horribly.


Barbara said...

I think the plan for the cave crickets is worth an experiment--let us all know the results.

Barry.Long said...

Ahoy, Cville boatbuilder, etc.. Apparently, other boaty people have heard of you and keep asking me if I know you. The assumption being, I gather, that the number of people in our area building boats is so small we must all - both of us - know each other. Oddly enough, it was my own battle with a clone army of camel crickets and their wolf spider repellions that led me to your site. I now understand the inverse proportion equation that corresponds to the number of recently deceased wolf spiders and the presently copious quantities of invading camel crickets. So, thanks.

S R Wood said...

Hi Barry, great to hear from you. How strange that we're both in the area. When I read about the Melonseeds on Steve Earley's blog I had no idea they were so nearby! Another builder: someone who understands this madness of bugs and wood shavings.

Barry.Long said...

Cool. Yup, that would be me. It would appear, we passed each other multiple times at MASCF this year. I might have spilled beer on you without knowing it. If so, sorry, it wasn't me. I may even have posted a picture of you, for all I know. I put up about 400 of the 1000 pictures I took in a gallery on the site.

We should get together for a sail when we're both done (whenever that is). I put Steve on notice that we might haul them down his way and arrange to meet up somewhere, and he's up for it. Couldn't find an email address for you attached to your blog (smart) but contact me directly at some point so we can stay in touch. I hope to be done before the water gets warm again.

barry dot long at eyeinhand dot com