Sunday, February 4, 2018
Same ol' story
I have done it again.
I have started another writing project before finishing the one before the other one, and before the other ones. Ha! Well, hopefully, I'll have this new one finished sooner rather than later so I can return to the other ones. Just know that I am deep into the challenge. It's truly a cool idea. Unique! And....
Okay. I know. Same ol' story, huh?
This is why I can never publish, a dear fellow Forger once said to me – more like roared at me. “You can’t ever finish it off!”
Ouch. True. Somewhat true.
My observer was correct if he’s measuring the big stuff: the World War II story, or the Irish-burdened love story, or the Interstate freak story, or the Broad Ripple Tales collection. I have shared my ideas of each masterpiece-in-waiting on Fiction Forge Indy, and frequently. Thus, you are too well aware why I have to rewrite the WWII thing. Quite an epiphany that almost led me to tend garden plots instead of story plots. As for the others, I have no excuses why they are not done. I suppose they are works in progress based solely on my emotional status of the day. Do I have the creative depth to write poetic prose of two gay lovers caught in the strife of secrecy and the hell of Irish and English politics? Do I have los cojones to finish off the (dark) Interstate comedy; or does it have me by los cojones?
My emotional status. Whatever drives my writing or stops it cold is what traps these stories as perpetual works of progress. I am cursed that my big project yarns are iconic only in my brain and a link on my desktop. I admit that I do open them up from time to time and review them and add new prose only to end up stuck in that editing whirlwind. (We all do that by default, do we not?) For example, I have added stories to the Broad Ripple collection – some of which I have posted here. Yet, this collection needs more energy and, frankly, more affecting plots. Also, I am finishing the first draft of the WWII story, even if its current state is DOA. And yes; I do have the strength to complete Interstate…just not today. Sigh….
Waitaminute! I have accomplished publishing. I have finished some things off, my dear former Forger observer guy friend.
If short stories and prose blog posts are to be collated with my everlasting reworking, then I must object; for I have finished and published some important, if shorter projects, if only in local literary mags, if only FFI, if only…short works of art. Mother’s Parlor…Indianaville…Fiction Forge Indy. I could add more to this list – but I’d be making them up. Regardless, these are accomplishments, no matter how short their narratives or universal their reach.
Where am I going with this post? Well, I know that I am not alone. Our work will never be perfect enough to let go – until the day we actually let go. Is it enough to know that we actively write every day with the hope that we will complete the lives of our characters? Sometimes, hope is all we’ve got.
You strained to normalize your procrastination instead of challenging it. Facts are facts: no published story, no readership. Furthermore, you ended the post without recounting the introduced purpose of the post. Structurally unsound: you started off about you and your failures to finish whatever you start only to end the post in some ‘we are all guilty of this’ group therapy. And you felt your ego bruised towards the middle, so you threw in some moderate publishing achievements that rendered the post a defensive rendition. So, seriously; what was the purpose of this post? Ah, yes: The Beiste and Lady Cairstine!
I am excited to tell you that I am writing that soon-to-be classic Christmas story as first proposed a few weeks back (The Christmas Nut Roll Log). I can't give out all the specifics, but just know that I outlined it, and I have written the first two chapters. The story takes place in Glasgow, sometime in the 1910s, and tells the tale of a mother and son who were cursed by a witch -- a Marione McEwin of Dumbarton -- and who now have to witness the moment when -- oops! I don't want to reveal too much. Just know that I am working on it every day; every afternoon, to be specific, when I return home from the lab. Hopefully, I'll have it ready for the workshop soon and, hopefully, ready to be published in time for Christmas '18.