29 January 2008

Short Stories

Lately I've been really getting into short stories - reading not writing. I've been rereading some Marukami then on the weekend there was an article in the paper on Raymond Chandler.

According to the article, a lot of the sparse style that he's credited with actually came about from his editor rather than his own writing style. There's a book that might be coming out with the original versions of some of his work. I find that kind of thing fascinating, seeing how a story has evolved, being able to pull it apart.

28 January 2008

Goals

I've been slacker than hessian underwear about setting any writing goals for 2008. Mostly because once I set goals, I'll have to work towards achieving them and all that kind of hard worky type stuff.

I feel like I achieved very little last year. Well in the second half of the year anyway. I can't really remember way, way back to the beginning of 2007 but I do think there was a flash of productivity there. Then I started having to drive a long way to work and all that driving seemed to sap the energy from me. Not even so much the time lost but the intense concentration involved. Or maybe that's just an excuse.

So this year I want to

  • submit at least one short story and one article idea a month
  • finish my damn novel that I've been working on forever. I want to get it finished and submitted and out of my headspace so there's room for new and exciting things.
  • write my whole new and exciting novel.
Simple yet effective goals.

20 January 2008

Lost

This week during my lunch break at work, I rewrote part of a short story I'm working on. I definitely did it. I can remember sitting at the table, eating my magically delicious Chicken Satay Salad and flicked through an article in Men's Health on weight training then, feeling guilty about wasting time, pulled out my notebook and started writing. I'm almost sure I can even remember the notebook I wrote it in.

Suddenly, in my head, they have become the most wonderful, scintilating words ever written. They were perfect and said everything I wanted to say in just the exact way I wanted to see them. They painted a picture that would make you weep. You'd forget everything you'd ever read before because the pure sparkle of these words would annilate all that's gone before.

I think this because I can't find them. I can find the notebook I thought I used but not the words. They are lost forever and nothing I ever write will come close to capturing that feeling. Of course, if I do find them now, somehow the magic will have worn off.

13 January 2008

Frustrations

I've been avoiding the bloody thing for months - hiding under the table or running out the back door whenever it gets close - then the other day I decided to 'nad up and have one final review of the damn novel then work my arse off trying to get it published.

So I printed out the first hundred or so pages and forced myself to read the words that I've edited so many hundred times I can almost recite them. The first page is a slog then it gets easy, then I'm checking the time and realise I've got 10 minutes to get to the physio! I'd been so engrossed, I'd lost the whole afternoon.

A very good sign indeed.

Except now my printer is being a total tempermental anusface and won't print me the last 200 pages. It's evil and vile and trying to drive me insane. And it may well be replaced shortly by something younger and prettier.