Guys, I’m nothing if not consistent.
This is what, week two of NaNo and I’m sitting around, doing just about everything except actually working on Random Contemporary/aka With Me Now. Here’s a sampling of things I did instead:
- Clipped my toenails
- Fell asleep next to my laptop
- Fell asleep with my laptop on my lap
- Watched Top Gear. Twice.
- Pinned hilarious Pinterest pictures related to The Walking Dead, such as but not limited to, “Stay in the fucking house, Carl” (not nearly as amusing if you’re not a fan of TWD)
- Sang The Thong Song (what’s up, 1999??)
- Explained to my three-year old what nipples are (sample conversation: “Does Daddy have them?” “Yes.” “What do they do?” “Nothing.)
- Wrote a short story.
Yes, I wrote a short story.
Now….now look, I’m what, almost 32 years old? I’ve been consistently writing since 4th grade. But, I’ve never written a short story. Ever. I’ve written poetry. I’ve written hilarious songs about working in retail. I’ve written a novel or two. But, I’ve never written a short story.
I’ve always turned my snobby little nose up at short stories. Short stories are connotative to my high school English classes. Unfortunately, the only short story title I can think of at this moment is “An Occurence at Owl Creek Bridge.” I don’t think I read that in high school. Oh, and Poe. I read a lot of Poe in high school.
When it comes to writing, though, I can’t definitively say that I’ve ever tried my hand at writing a short story. My story ideas are typically delusions of grandeur. They demand casts of thousands. They require abuse of section breaks and semi-colons. But a short story…a short story requires….succinctness?
I’m not succinct. I’m easily distracted. Case in point: I put this blog post down so I could go and grab and handful of cheese puffs.
But…here’s the weird thing. And not weird as in, “But, I bought that yogurt on Saturday! How did it expire on November 1st?” I wrote that little short story–thirteen pages from start to finish–in one day. Not like, twenty-four hours one day, but I wrote the majority of it over my lunch break at work and then finished it up when I got home.
That never happens.
It is, as you may have guessed by the blog title, historical fiction. Remember, I’ve put historical fiction on hold for the time being while I finish With Me Now. Apparently, what I meant when I said that was I was putting historical fiction on hold until I picked it up again later on that day. It’s like me and my diet. “No, no, I don’t need that slice of pumpkin cake. I’m dieting. Oh, okay, well maybe just a small piece.”
So, now that it’s finished, why not celebrate by submitting it to a short story contest?! Yup. That’s what I’m doing. What a rebel. More on that as it develops.
Thirteen pages cranked out in a couple of hours. Why can’t I get this kind of work done on my contemporary? I mean, I was getting work like that done on it. Until November hit and I got all cocky with, “Well, my goal is to finish the whole manuscript by the end of November. Beause that’s totally doable.” Ha. So far, I’ve finished a chapter.
And a short story. That’s a victory. I’ll take ’em as I can get ’em.