Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Enchanted, Inc. -- Nearing the End

We're getting close to the end in the Enchanted, Inc. reread, with chapters 17 and 18.

We start with the conclusion of the crazy magic immunity testing scheme and another appearance by the guy who thought he was turned into a frog. Looking back at it, I had way too much fun with that thread. I suspect it has something to do with the fact that it's never the men I find interesting who get interested in me. If someone is going to be following me around, serenading me, giving me flowers, etc., it's most likely someone who just makes me uncomfortable. Romantic interest is so seldom symmetrical, alas.

Then we set up for our final showdown. The setting at the amusement park in New Jersey actually stemmed from a practical matter. When I'd finally decided I had to write this book after more than a year of thinking about it, I felt like I needed a research trip to New York before I could really write it. I'd been there for a conference the previous summer, and I'd done some wandering around at the time, but not really enough because I didn't know enough about the story to know what I needed to look into. But a group of people I'd met online through Firefly fandom were planning a get-together in the fall at Wildwood, New Jersey. I figured I could get a ride from there to Philadelphia to catch a train to New York, so I could kill two birds with one stone and spend a couple of days in New York after the event. I guess it was kind of a leap of faith that I booked my return flight and hotel without having totally firmed up travel plans (though I'd already found one person willing to get me to the train station in Philadelphia). I ended up just getting a ride straight to New York, so it worked out. But then I was being scrupulous about which part of the expenses counted as a tax deduction. I knew my hotel in New York would count, but could I write off all my airfare, even if only half the time was devoted to work-related activity?

Then I figured that if I used the setting of the other place I'd gone, I could write off all the airfare in good conscience. And the moment I had that thought, ideas started flowing. One of the mornings we were in New Jersey, it was really foggy. We were at an old-timey motel, the kind where all the rooms open onto a balcony/walkway overlooking a courtyard, a couple of blocks from the beach, where we could see all the rides on the boardwalk. A group of us sat out on the balcony, drinking tea and looking at the eerie way the top of the roller coaster emerged from the fog. That seemed like a really evocative image that would be a great setting for a fight, and I also like the idea of juxtaposing something so seemingly normal and wholesome like an amusement park with a magical battle. Now it seems like there's no other place I could have set that scene, even though it stemmed from me being practical.

Next week, the end of the book!

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