I’ve completed story number 4 out of 6 for my resolution goal this year, and number 2 out of 7 for my planned collection of stories: The Planets.
This one was a real pain, and I had a hard time finding the spirit. But it came out okay in the end! Even though it went in a different direction than I’d planned.
It’s more personal proof that the ‘idea’ of the story is only one of many ingredients. It’s the seed that grows into who knows what. The end result might not have any evidence of what the seed looked like… let the story go where it wants, and don’t try to force it in your original direction!
I’ve started reading ‘Out’ by Christine Brooke-Rose. This one is described as an ‘experimental’ novel, and it certainly reads that way. The writing style is very strange so far, with repetitive descriptions of the surrounding environment, with characters left in a sort of confusing fog. I’m finding it very interesting, and enjoying how I have to sort of think and puzzle out what the heck is going on.
The focus often falls on the very small, while things that are probably important are ignored by the character. In the opening for example, he watches two flies ‘making love’ on his knee, while people are talking around him. Later he’s watching a square of light on the table, or thinking about how the way people are standing form different chemical bonds with their feet.
Some of it is so beautiful, and I feel that the writing is more important than the story for me these days, so I’m liking it a lot so far.
Ideas on how I want to write a future story are appearing…
I’m writing a story finally. Took a while to get the ideas organized in my head for the next planet, Jupiter. I’m writing about an endless storm, but on Earth.
The problem is I don’t really like it. But I can’t stop now so I’ll just have to push it out.
It’s not like I can tell what’s good anyway. The stories I love the most never sell, and those I whip out in a flash do… So what do I even know. It mostly just feels like rolling dice…
I’ve spent a bit of time the past few days wondering if anyone will ever want to read my stories, or enjoy reading them as much as I did writing them. Am I the only one who enjoys the sort of thing I want to write? Surely I can’t be… I’m not that special or unique or smart or dumb. There must be people out there who like similar things to what I write.
But what if there wasn’t? What if, somehow, the exact thing I enjoy reading and writing, was not popular with anyone… would I still write it?
Would I change my ‘style’ to please someone–anyone!–or, would I keep on trying to satisfy my own tastes and preferences.
You might ask: what’s the point of writing something no one wants to read?
But, what is the point of writing something that doesn’t say what you want it to?
I got some feedback on my novella, The Observer, yesterday, and it was encouraging to hear that it was not a completely boring, confusing, self-indulgent mess as I sometimes feel it is in my spirals of confidence.
Getting your writing out into the real world in front of real eyes (not those excessively cruel/worshipfully sycophantic ones of your imagination) is quite helpful, and I highly recommend you find a group of trustworthy people to tell you what’s what about your writing.
Thanks writing friends, for all your help!
Things don’t always look like what they are… this picture could be an undersea growth, an abstract splatter painting, the shadows of some grasses, or a bare tree and blue sky. It all depends on how you present it, the angle at which you perceive it…
I try to keep this in mind when writing. There are many ways to describe each event or object or emotion. And I try to keep in mind the over all goal of what I’m writing when deciding how to describe something.
It’s a tree, btw, rotated. 🙂