A Bookmark

November 21st, 2008

The responses to the Creativity Questions post have been terrific, including those from the people who e-mailed me offline.  My next post will be a sort of roundup of things I might ask artists to talk about when they blog about their creative process here.  Please add any questions you haven’t already seen asked.

Since so many of you stuck with me through the long soap opera of writing MISDIRECTION, I thought I’d let you know that I just finished an excellent edit, courtesy of Peggy Hageman, my new editor at Morrow, and that the book is better, although still the longest yet — about 10,000 words longer than the other two.  It’s also it’s got a new title; BREATHING WATER.

The title comes from a speech Arthit makes to Poke, telling him he has no idea of the depth of the trouble he’s blundered his way into: “It’s like you’re at the bottom of the Chao Phraya, wandering around on the riverbed without a map and breathing water, and you haven’t even realized it.”

BREATHING WATER also refers to the idea that, in this book, everything that matters is below the surface.  At another point in the book, Poke likens most expats to waterbugs: they dimple the surface of Bangkok life, without ever drawing the gaze of the things in the depths.  But he’s being gazed at, and that’s not good.

So anyway, new title, and, in some ways, a new book.  Thanks for bearing with me during its long and sometimes troubled gestation.

6 Responses to “A Bookmark”

  1. Jen Forbus Says:

    Sounds like an excellent title, Tim. Good luck!

  2. suzanna Says:

    Congratulations on completing your edit for Breathing Water. 10,000 more words of great writing — yahoo!

  3. Greg Says:

    I like the title too. It conjures up all sorts of images and suggests that, once again, Poke is going to be emersed in some very harrowing situations. Congrats on passing another major milestone on the road to the retailers.
    Thanks for continuing to share your creative process with us. I’m looking forward to the continuing responses to the creativity queries.

  4. Timothy Hallinan Says:

    Thanks,all — just got confirmation today from my editor that she’s happy with the changes. This brings us to one of my favorite points in the publishing process, which is when the publisher releases the remainder of the advance. My bank account is already going yum yum yum.

    The longer I live with the title, the better I like it. And Suzanna, that’s the nicest thing anyone could say about the extra 10,000 words.

  5. Suzanna Says:

    Sorry, Tim, I didn’t mean to imply that there were only 10,000 words of great writing in your upcoming book, but 10,000 EXTRA words of great writing in your upcoming book! Thanks for clarifying what I meant.

    Happy Thanksgiving!

  6. Timothy Hallinan Says:

    Geez, Suzanna — I never for a moment thought you were implying that. Am I that touchy? Although I’ll be very happy if there are 10,000 words of great writing in this book or any other that I write.

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