Thursday, 30 August 2012

Skinned knuckles and Short Story Frustration...

Today (Thursday) hasn't been as good as it could have been.

On the way to my excercise class I caught the toe of my shoe on the edge of the pavement and lurched forward. Fortunately my head missed the metal railings ahead of me, but my knuckles suffered a scraping.

So I started the day with small cuts and areas of missing skin- it was quite minor once it was cleaned up. But no experience is wasted, and if any of my characters ever scrape their knuckles, I'll be able to describe the sensation. :-)

I mentioned recently that I've been trying to write a short story for a competition at the writers' club. The judge wants a short fictional story based on a real event in history. And it has to be handed in next Wednesday...

Now I had the historic event decided three months ago, but no matter how hard I thought about it, no characters, and no plot ideas came to me; until a few days ago when my central character emerged, along with a brief plot idea.

So today I sat down with a blank document to start writing. Title? Nothing- which is not a good sign
as usually I have some sort of title at the start, even if I change it later.

I had my opening line, but it wasn't quite right, so I made a few changes, and the writing began.

I only managed to reach 161 words before I gave up.

There are problems and I know what they are:
  • I consciously decided to write it in the first person. Personally I prefer third person, but usually let my writing brain decide for me. If it's really a first person viewpoint then I'll start it that way without thinking about it.
  • The main character is hiding too much from me at the moment. I need to know her better.
  • (And the biggest issue) My writing mind has gone into novella/novel mood, ready for the annual autumn school/college term beginning, giving me undisturbed hours to write.
Really I wish I could be more flexible, but I've discovered from trying it previously, that short stories don't work when I'm in longer writing mode.

Unless a short story idea grabs me and swamps whatever I'm doing at the time, demanding to be written down immediately, I find it better (for everyone) to go with the flow than fight against it.

I'll let you know if I do get the story written...



 

6 comments:

  1. Ouch! Glad you weren't too seriously hurt.

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  2. Thank goodness you weren't badly hurt! It's always good to store these mishaps away for future use in a story :-)

    That story sounds like very hard work. I hope the solutions will come and you'll be able to finish it.

    I find it very difficult to switch between one sort of writing and another too x

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  3. Glad that wasn't an even worse accident, Carol! Hope you get the story finished. I jump from one kind of writing to the other all the time so I think I must be wired that way.

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  4. Falling is so awful - bad enough when you're a kid but the fall is so much further and harder when you're an adult! As for the story - ugh! I've been there! Good luck :-)

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  5. I hope your fingers are o.k. now. I also hope you get that story finished. Don't give away too much here though. See you on Wednesday.

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  6. Thank you all for your kind comments.

    I've been being very circumspect in what I reveal just in case you happened to read it Keith. :-)

    Sadsly I've come to the conclusion that the story is not going to happen- unless I'm suddenly gripped by inspiration.

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