A friend of mine reckons that even when you’re not writing, you are. I hope so. Since returning from the sun and having had the time to devour three books (11:2263 by Stephen King, Transatlantic by Colum McCann and The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith or somebody like that –more on these another time), I’m back to my routine where writing and reading time kicks in in the evenings. I just feel I’m not progressing enough. A college professor once told me that I needed to lock the door and forget the laundry. Well, this week I’ve done it. It’s piled high as a volcano on the bed behind me and I’ve my writing jumper on. Admittedly, I’m also knee deep in a course in proofreading, so things are particularly busy at the minute, notwithstanding the fact that “school’s in” in two days’ time!
More and more, I can appreciate the time it takes to work at writing. You just gotta sit down, get stuck in and reach the word target but there must be a case for taking the inadvertent time to reflect and let the narrative threads find their settling places.
Typically, I get 1,500 words of a 2,000 – 2,500 word story done in a couple of sittings and then I lose the momentum or become pernickety about the ending. The last story I did – “Geronimo” (coming to a journal near you!) – ebbed and flowed in a similar fashion until it just came to me that the protagonist would meet his inevitable fate. Something in me knew it would be so but it took the time when I wasn’t actually writing to figure it out.
One day, I’ll write the story from start to finish as short stories should be written and attach the corresponding label, to be read in one sitting only, as short stories should be read, but for now I’ll tip away, mingle with and muse about the characters and challenges I meet along the way.