Turns out, buying a house and writing a book are not compatible activities.

I've had to spend two days dealing with paperwork. We closed on the house yesterday. I felt like Mel Brooks in Blazing Saddles, signing, signing, signing, signing, signing...

I suspect moving and writing are even less compatible.

Anyway, I've still got three days left to finish the rewrite, which should be plenty of time as long as I don't do anything else.

Anything at all.

(Warning to Linda.)

I've been pretty diligent in my re-write. I cut about 3000 words out of the first 15,000 words. I didn't end up jettisoning the second chapter altogether, but cut it by 60%, saving the best parts.

It's funny, I think I'm making huge changes, but I compared the newest draft with the one before the last one and really it isn't all that different. There just aren't that many things I would change. In fact, a bunch of the changes I thought were improving the book got taken back out. But the point was, I tried, and when it got down on paper it proved not to be better.

I also learned something--or relearned something--in taking out the 3000 words. It was a lot easier doing it on paper, crossing off sections, circling sections and moving them, and so on. A good thing to remember.

I have no idea if "Deadfall Ridge" works as a "thriller." I nearly always have "fantastical" elements--even the two books I wrote without the supernatural; "The Scorching" had fires lighting up the entire West, while "Snaked" had a plague of snakes and a tsunami.

This was a little more local, a little more street level. If nothing else, it was an interesting thing to try.