Hi-diddle-de-de, a writer’s life for me

In what may be the fastest flip in my own personal history, yesterday I wrote a story.

No, actually, that’s not true.

On. . .what was yesterday, Tuesday?


So. . .On Sunday, a story idea surfaced; nothing particularly new; I’d been meaning to get to a story kinda, sorta like it for a while now, but. . .press of other bidness, plus — no brain.  This time surfacing, the idea had more grit to it, which they do accumulate down there in writer’s stewpot.  I talked the new wrinkles over with Steve, and we brainstormed a little, mostly around the idea of how a certain thing could come into the hands of the main character — in fact, would it come into the hands of the main character — and in the course of that discussion, Steve came up with the shadow of a new character.  We proceeded to kick the new character around some, as we do; then went to bed.

At this point, I was still intending to write the story that had surfaced, oh, sometime in the next week.  Maybe working on the story in the morning, and the book in the evening.

But! On. . .Monday, it would be, as I was running errands, I bethought myself that the new character had quite the story, and! that this story and the surfaced story and, possibly, one more story that’s still hanging around at the edge of things, pretending like it doesn’t really want to be written, all hook together.  So, now instead of one story that I’m gonna get to realsoonnow, I have a triptych, the first section of which wants to be written right now.

After I’d finished up with the scene for the novel that I’d been working on, I outlined the first short story — thinking to buy some time, see?  Sometimes, if you give them an outline, they’ll hold off with the write me now!

Well, I found out that wasn’t going to work when, immediately upon finishing the outline, I opened a file and wrote the first 830 words.

And, yesterday, I wrote the other 5,167, which brings the entire first draft in at just a smidge under 6,000 words.

This is not a personal best, that remains the day I sat down and typed 25 pages — call it 6,250 words — of Agent of Change at one go.  Still, for me, it’s pretty quick.

So!  What happens now with the story is that it gets to rest until Saturday, when I’ll give it a cold read and  in the process find out what it’s about.  Steve and I will talk about it, and one of us will doubtless revise it.  Eventually — next week, or the week after — it will appear on Splinter Universe.

And this, boys and girls, is how stories are made.


When you’re lucky.

6 thoughts on “Hi-diddle-de-de, a writer’s life for me”

  1. YAY! Nice of your brain to cooperate but sorry that it’s cracking the whip so hard.
    <wipes drool off keyboard, tells mouth to 'wait for it,' sternly.

  2. I’ve had stories come up like that. My brother told me that a podcast he listens to says that a great way to get inspiration going is to arrange matters so while you’re busy physically you don’t have anything else to do with your mind except think about stuff at length and you’ll get inspired just to keep from being bored. I find that happens all the time.

  3. Love it when stories cooperate quickly, rather than having to be dragged out millimeter by millimeter because (the story says) you can’t have the good part YET.

    OTOH…that being busy physically while with nothing to do mentally but think story…doesn’t quite work for me. At least, I can’t be doing anything physical that might end in death or serious injury if I don’t pay attention: driving, riding a bike, using power tools, using sharp objects, or turning the heel of a sock. If the story DOES come alive, my entire awareness dives into it. (How, you may be thinking, can turning the heel of a sock risk serious injury? You haven’t seen me turning the heel of a sock. Those needles are pointy on both ends and I have my glasses off for really close vision–like a few inches from my eyes.)

  4. One of the things that I used to love about secretarial work was the sheer number of mindless tasks that still needed to be performed by someone with thumbs. I used to adore collating. Once you got the stacks set up in order and oriented yourself in the proper direction, off you went on automatic, round, and round, and round, pick up a sheet of paper, another sheet of paper, and smack the stapler at the end. I got so much stuff written while I collated, I should probably have paid the boss.


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