Friday, April 20, 2012

It's not easy being Stan Lee

My friend Alice posted a thing on her blog called the 7-7-7 challenge. This sounded like a taste test for a new soda from Herman Cain, but in fact it is also something else.

The 7-7-7 Challenge:
Flip to page 77 or page 7 of your current work in progress.
Find line 7.
Post the 7 sentences that follow.
Tag 7 more writers.

I'm not doing the last part, because that one 7 too many. (Of course, if any of my imaginary readers want to consider themselves tagged, they may respond to this challenge in the comments. Never let it be said that I am not magnanimous.) But I will do the first bit, which means putting up a bit from my current work in progress.

This actually comes at an interesting time for me. On Monday I submitted the manuscript I've been working on for the last eight or nine months. But I didn't want to rest on my laurels. Did Stan Lee rest after he created the Hulk? No! He made up hundreds of other heroes, most of which were truly awful.

With this in mind, on Tuesday I decided I wanted to keep writing fiction while waiting to hear back about that manuscript. I will have to scale back a lot, but it's surprising what can get accomplished in 20 or 30 minutes a day if you're really consistent.

For my next project, I have chosen my previous project. In 2008, I took a class from Brandon Sanderson (with Alice!), and started a novel. I haven't finished it, although I've workshopped my way through the beginning a couple of times. So my new project is to write through to the end.

So here's 7 sentences from p. 77 of what I am still calling "Love of Money in Time of Cholera" for lack of a better title.

“Helping me out?” said Mazoon. “That’s what you call this?”
“I’ve saved your life three times today,” said Surt. He extended one finger and stuck it very nearly in Mazoon’s face. “I stopped the men on the tower from shooting you when you and your pals were running out on the rest of us.”
“Wouldn’t have hit me,” grumbled Mazoon.
“Yes, they would have,” said Surt, “if I hadn’t stood up and put an end to it.”

I think that speaks for itself. And what it says is, I am a huge nerd and the people in my books have silly names. Like 'the Hulk.'




Alice said...

I remember this and am glad to hear you're going to finish it!

David said...


"Homologous systems have since been found broadly and uniquely among the firmicutes [21,23,24]. When it was discovered that this TCS primarily regulated cell wall metabolism genes, its name was changed from YycFG to WalKR [25], with WalR being the response regulator and WalK being the sensor kinase. I will exclusively use the new names in this proposal.
In B. subtilis, the response regulator WalR was shown to dimerize and bind to a consensus sequence consisting of two direct repeats of 5’-TGTWAH-3’ separated by five variable nucleotides [26]. It was later shown that the S. aureus and B. subtilis walR genes are very similar, particularly in their DNA-binding winged helix-turn-helix domains, and that WalR binds the same consensus sequence in both organisms. The S. aureus genome was then scanned for this consensus sequence, and it was found in position to potentially regulate 31 genes. Unsurprisingly, the majority are involved in autolysis and cell wall metabolism."

Perhaps not as compelling as your work, John, but I think the characters speak for themselves.

Dean Esmay said...

Good lord. I'm embarrassed to say I don't have a current work in progress. :-(