There’s comedy gold in them there stills!

I’ve never been much of a Charlie Chaplin fan. Searching Google images for something to go with this post I came across the above still from The Gold Rush. It made me laugh. Maybe it’s time to give Chaplin another crack of the whip. Maybe his sense of humour is something for a more mature audience.

One of the most enjoyable things for me as a writer of crime novels is when a plot line idea occurs that makes me laugh out loud with its potential. (Yes, I did juxtapose ‘writer of crime novels’ and ‘laugh out loud’. I don’t see why a crime novel shouldn’t have its lighter moments.) I had that welcome and motivating experience this week while working on R&M#7. I think I even shouted ‘Comedy Gold!’. It’s OK; the house was empty. I just hope I can fully mine it and maximise its potential. I want to talk about it here. I want to share the idea with someone who would understand and appreciate it. But I can’t/won’t because I don’t like spoiling my own books. Sometimes being a writer can be quite frustrating. 😦

R&M#7 is progressing nicely. Almost forty thousand words now. I started this book thirteen days ago today. With every day that passes the thought grows that I should challenge myself to see how quickly I can finish the first draft. Could I write a book in a month? In my more sensible moments I realise that’s not such a great idea for me as a writer or a person. I’m not going to generate that sort of pressure for myself. I never much enjoyed having targets and deadlines in my professional life. I’ll be damned if I’m going to bring them into my private life. Besides, I think I’m going to have to take a break from this one to go back to R&M#6.

As I have done with the last couple of books, I recently pinged off the rough first draft of R&M#6 to my daughter’s Kindle as a word document. As well as there being something special for me in her being the first to read it, she is an objective and critical reader who knows what she likes and isn’t afraid to highlight what she doesn’t. She finished it yesterday. She says she likes it better than R&M#6 Particular Stupidities. Now I must get back to the next editing stage in order that it can move along the production conveyor belt to my gentleman friend and proofreading.

I’ve been giving some thought to the way I present myself online. And my conclusion is that it’s a bit amateurish. This blog and my FB page are about it and neither of the banners on those mentions anything about my books or that I’m a crime writer. WTF? I’m thinking that it’s about time I had a proper website with a proper domain name. Something to give the impression that I’m taking what I do seriously. I bought a couple of years ago for just such an event. In truth it’s probably well overdue, but better late than never. It would be a good first step on the road to a more professional online presence. All the best authors have them. And as my dear old mum always says: if you can’t beat them, cheat. And my daughter tells me: fake it till you make it.

4 thoughts on “There’s comedy gold in them there stills!

  1. Many things I like about this blog. I,m not keen on Charlie Chaplin. Chuckles in a crime book is a good thing. The realisation that a more professional stance and attitude is needed.Go for it O;over.

  2. Dostoyevsky wrote a novel – The Gambler – in 26 days, at the same time as he was writing the monthly installments of Crime and Punishment. Not a recommendation. He had a gambling problem and had borrowed money in return for writing a novel.If he didn’t complete the novel within the month he would have forfeited all of the rights to all of his works for the next 10 years. Now that’s pressure.

    • Hi Sarah
      Thanks for this. I had to Google it to see what I’m up against. (No! I said I wouldn’t challenge myself!) I then wasted several minutes of my valuable writing time. 🙂 A gem of literary history. Wiki says: He noted down parts of his story, then dictated them to one of the first stenographers in Russia and his wife-to-be, young Anna Grigorevna, who transcribed them and copied it neatly out for him. With her help, he was able to finish the book in time.
      Maybe I’ll have a word with my wife and see how she feels about writing my latest project out if I lie down and dictate it to her. 🙂
      Best wishes.

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