Plugging Away

It’s been a month since my last post, and things have happened. I’ll number them, though the number doesn’t matter so much. 

  1. I’ve finished the draft of “Lord Fluffy Bottom Destroys the World” and tossed that on the to-edit pile.
  2. Likewise with another story with the working title “But Daddy, I Love You.” That one’s a horror story I never intended to write. But I did write it, so there it is. That’s also on the to-edit pile. 
  3. I’ve joined a writer’s group, and that’s what most of this blog post will be about.

I submitted “Million Dollar Idea,” and got some really good feedback. Overall, the response was positive though you can’t please everyone. Though I knew I was writing a dystopian story with that one, a few of the people suggested I read Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451 when they found out I hadn’t — I know! I don’t have any clue how I passed high school English. First of all, F451 is a fantastic book. If you haven’t read it, go read it. Right now. It’s short. Stop complaining and go do it. I’ll wait. 

Anyway, I read it, like I said, and I can see some valid comparisons there. So that one’s going on the to-edit pile as well. 

And lastly, I’ve sold a story! Well, actually, I did that a month ago, but I didn’t announce it here. More details to come. 

 

All the Best Parts

Well, I’ve just finished my first draft of “All the Best Parts,” and on the second day of having a writing blog no less! Coincidence? Probably. 

This one was a bit more difficult than my previous stories. I think there are a few reasons for that. 

  1. It’s longer than the other stories. 
  2. I had ideas for the beginning and ending, but the middle needed to take care of itself. 
  3. I tried to mess around with some non-linear story telling, but it didn’t work out as well as I had hoped. 
  4. What I thought was the beginning wasn’t really the beginning, and it took me awhile to figure that out. 

The first draft clocks in at about 6,500 words. I expect that total to go up in the second draft since I’ll need to connect some dots that I didn’t even know about when I wrote earlier bits of the story. Then it will be cutting time, with a goal of getting the story down to about 4-5k words. I’m not sure how feasible that is. I’m new at this after all. 

First, though, I’m going to write a fun little flash fiction story I’m tentatively calling “Lord Fluffybottom Destroys the World.” 

Actually, first I’m going to sleep. But that’s not really relevant. 

Let’s Start at the Very Beginning….

To (badly) plagiarize a quote from Goodfellas: “For as long as I can remember, I wanted to be a writer.” There were other interests of course, but I’ve always loved stories. Over the years I’ve started numerous novels. Some even made it to a second page. After college, I decided on the glamorous life of an engineer. 

But the storytelling never really left me. I would write little stories and email them to my friends three or four paragraphs at a time. I’d try to inject a bit of style when writing reports at work. And, of course, there were those sentences I’d written for all the novels I’d never finish.

Back in March of 2013, the writing bug was biting again. This time, I took a different track. Rather than start a novel I’d never finish, I decided to write short fiction. I started with a story of 1,000 words. And then another. Then one that was a bit longer. Suddenly, I had finished stories, and people who would read and critique them for me (thanks, guys!), and I started to submit them for publication. 

I received my first rejection in May, and it gave me a sense of accomplishment — and a drive to do better next time.

It won’t be my last.