Writing Report August 4, 2018
I attend a weekly writing group, and every week a few of us will read whatever we’re currently working on and ask for feedback.
This week one writer read a story he’d written based on a well known piece of folklore to which he added an interesting twist.
If his interesting twist was X, sparked Y, a counter-idea in me widdle brain.
“Not to tell you how to write your story,” I said, “but, did you consider doing Y instead of X?”
“No, not really, and for what I’m trying to do in my story, I think X works best.”
“Would you mind if I did a story using Y?”
“Go ahead. In fact, I’d love to see what you do with it.”
As the meeting continued, I started scribbling down notes, not really a plot, just a realization of what the story would need to work.
I came up with a clever title, but almost abandoned it: It was too spot on, too obvious.
And then second gear kicked in.
Let the title give the punch line to Y away.
The story goes past Y and on to Z!
It took all my self-control to keep from blurting out this second, bigger twist on the original folklore.
As soon as I got home, I wanted to start working on the story.
Events, alas, conspired against me.
No, strike that: Events conspired in my favor.
Unable to sit down and work on the story for the next 20 hours, I was forced to think about it.
And in doing so I peeled back layer after layer that I didn’t realize the story had.
I finally got to start working on the story at 4:10pm Wednesday.
I finished -- 7,280 words later -- at 12:46am on Thursday.
(And that’s not counting a dinner break or kitty maintenance duties.)
I expected the story to be a relatively short one, somewhere between 1,800 to perhaps 2,500 words. I was only a few pages into it when I realized that even my stripped down narrative was going to run longer than I expected; perhaps 3,500 to 3,800 words. But by the time I was done…
. . .
Keep your eyes open for…
My short story “The Bride Of The Astounding Gigantic Man” in the upcoming anthology Test Patterns: Creature Features. More info as it becomes available.
© Buzz Dixon