09 April, 2011


Now comes the hard part.  What do I write about?  What should I talk about first...I have Ideas.  Ideas with a capital 'I.'  But how to begin...there is a reason I start a story just about every other day and most get about three thousand words and then languish in the dusty depths of my 'Documents: Books: Unfinished' file.

So maybe I'll talk about that.

I am working (cue violent string crescendo) on an OPUS!...opus...opus...opus...I love it and I am super proud of it.  But when my characters are being stubborn and I can't get the plot wrestled into shape, I vent my feelings starting by something new.

It is a fact of life that if you want to be good at something, you need to practice.  You need to run laps, throw footballs, play the piano, paint pictures, whatever it is, everyday.  I am a horrible journaler.  My descendants are going to read my scanty entries and think I never did anything.  When I do manage to remember to write something down, either something catastrophic has happened or it reads something like:  "Have Cheerios for breakfast.  Got stuck in traffic.  Got a new netflix today."  Wahoo.

So, when I 'practice' writing, I start short stories.  It is way more fun to write things that aren't real.  I can do whatever I want, make things happen how ever I want.  Unless the characters don't listen, but that's another topic.

Sometime these blossom into longer stories.  Most end up with me going...'meh,' and moving on.  Sometimes I only write one scene, either a dream I had, or a topic or historical figure that interests me.

But, this concentrated and unpressured writing really does help me with my longer, more serious work.  It also helps me with my comic writing.  I can play around with dialogue and little witty bits.  Those are lot harder than I imagined, setting up the different characters just right, setting up the situations where the humor isn't 'slapstick' but a natural outgrowth.

I'd love to tell you all how to do it.  But I'm still figuring it out myself.  Not very helpful I know.  I'm sorry.

But the first story I am going to post/publish is my attempt at using this 'humorish' writing.  This story, no title yet,  started as just one scene.  A rather angsty scene, somewhere in the middle of the story itself.  Then I expanded forwards and backwards, trying to get a good balance of drama and humor.  Otherwise it would have been altogether too depressing for words.

I am going to start it on Monday, then add one chapter a week.

Please read it and let me know what you think.  I am debating on whether to pull a Tarantino a put the chapters out of order at the beginning.  Since it is a short story, the set up for the rest of it is kind of boring and hurried.  I'm thinking of starting of with the action/drama right away and back tracking.  It is in first person, so I think it works.

Now off to tweek it a bit more and think up a title.