Thursday, January 12, 2012

Story Done. Sore Thumb. Now What?

There is something beautiful about all scars of whatever nature. A scar means the hurt is over, the wound is closed and healed, done with.
-Harry Crews, novelist and playwright (b. 1935) 

Well hello and happy new year to one and all my lovelies out there!

I thought that was quote was appropriate seeing as this story pained me to write it.  Pained me in the sense that every time I tried to work at it, it just sat there and laughed at me like some childhood bully that just spilled my chocolate milk all over my dress.

Or something like that.

Okay, perhaps that's just a skosh of an exaggeration, but you get my meaning.

Also (most likely from working on this story so much) yesterday my right hand started aching - specifically the joint area below my thumb up to the knuckle and also the meaty part of my palm.  I'm pretty sure it's from typing as well as moving the minibook around (lifting it out of the way of the cat and all).  I finished editing and posting yesterday as well as blogging all this with an achey thumb.  You never realize how much you need your thumb until it's taken away from you... well kinda taken away.

Oh the suffering I do for my art. ;-P
Moving on...

My brother's random "Wheel" prompts kill me.  I had an interesting idea with "Antonina", but what started out as a cool idea turned into "Holy crap!  What am I going to do with this?  How am I going to end it?"  With that story, I felt that I started off strong (I liked the violence I wrote in the beginning and the "fight scenes" thereafter), but I didn't feel it was really any good... at least the latter half (especially the ending).

Now with "Jacob"... my original goal was to finish it before the end of last year, but due to frustrations and creativity blockage mixed in with the holidays, insomnia and catching the plague... I ended up postponing my original goal to January 2012.  It would have been nicer if I finished it within a few days of the new year, but damn that plague.  Hacking and wheezing and sniffling and body aching... kind of makes it a little difficult to function.

I most likely got this from my family when I went to Fresno to visit for the holidays.  My brother and his family seemed to be passing it around to each other.  My mother had visited them and got it, too, though hers turned into pneumonia before I left.

During my drive home, I felt a little tickle in my throat.  The next day I visited ye ole drugstore and loaded up on meds.  (That's my way!  I'm a big medicator.)  I don't get terribly sick all that often, but when I do, I want it to last as short as possible.

In any case, I'm feeling better now.  I killed the sickness after a few days, but I still have a lingering sniffle and cough.  (The body ache is now from my upcoming bout with powerloss.)

Meaning... sometimes I hate being a girl.  Once a month I wish I could just scoop out my cervix with a melon baller and put it in a mason jar for five days until it's over.

Anyway, back to what I was talking about before.

It took me a while to get the "Jacob" story going.  No beginning felt right.  Then I found one that wasn't terribly formed well, but I felt I could work with it so then I just continued on my merry little way, making notes as I went, and then like fertile bunnies the pages kept multiplying. 

On the day before Christmas Eve (the day I was to venture to the land of Fresno), I posted on my Facebook my progress with a mild question of curiosity:

16 pgs & a possible ending. Huzzah? O_o How many pgs is the longest short story? #amwriting  

For some reason when I think "short story", I think "short".  Granted I've read from short stories that seemed to never end, but I guess when you love an author and a story so much, you don't want it to, and you get so lost up in it that you forget you're reading a short story and not a novel.

In response to my question, my friend Jonathan S. (aka Jaquas) posted this:

From the internets, so take with a grain of salt:
# Novel: a work of 40,000 words or more
# Novella: a work of at least 17,500 words but under 40,000 words
# Novelette: a work of at least 7,500 words but under 17,500 words
# Short story: a work of under 7,500 words

My other friend June B. had commented that the longest short story she had seen was 30 pages.  The longest she'd written was 24.

I was at 16 with a possible ending in my mind.  I just had to knit the words from page 16 to the end... wherever that would be.

And just so you know, I don't knit well.

Out of mild curiosity from what Jaquas posted, I did a word/character count, and proceeded to have this little chat with him via the post.

Me: Jaquas: I just counted 8300+ words/44+k characters... and I'm still not done. (I just feel like I'm rambling at this point.) #sigh
Jaquas: So you're at Novelette status :)
Me: Oh dude, am I? Or maybe I'm just at bullshit status? LOL!
Jaquas: Well, yeah, you're always at bullshit status though. :P
Me: Someone's gotta keep up with you. ;-P

And there you have an example of me and my friends.  (Cue Randy Newman's "You Got A Friend In Me")

I purposely did not bring the minibook with me over the holidays since I didn't think I would get much work done.  Also, I had some cuteness I needed to play with.
my adorable niece Bella in a new Christmas dress
Like I always do, I brought a notebook with me and ended up filling my moments of insomnia with some writing.  I worked on Jacob and amazingly enough one of my novels (Chloe).

My Facebook comment to the short story thread on December 29th:

I handwrote some stuff at my mom (thanks Insomnia... you bitch). Now I need to add it to the monster of whatever this story has become. Oh dear! O_o

January 3rd:

Finished typing up what I wrote while in Fresno. At 23 pages and at 11k+ words. *headdesk*

This short story was going to kill me.  Plus it was getting more difficult to get it done and out of my head since my other children were wanting Mommy to play with them.  I had made a goal that Monday would be the day that I would finish my story, Tuesday would be editing, and Wednesday would be posting.  Now if you follow the rule "It's not tomorrow until the sun comes up" then I did post it yesterday.  When I posted it on my various social networking places (Facebook, Twitter, Google+), I added an author's note (like I do) as well as this comment:

17,480 words and 33 pages, I give you... crap!

Looking at the word count now, per Jaquas's internet findings, I was 20 words away from a novella.  

So I wrote a novelette.





The author's note explains my feelings toward the piece.  Granted I wrote it late... hella late.  I refused to go to bed until I finished.  (Oh dear gawd.  Writing's hard!  But I love it so.  LOL!)

My friend Jery T. commented on my Facebook posting "Oh, I bet it's not as bad as you think."  My reply back?  "You obviously haven't read it. ;-P"

So now to continue on with my goal of upkeeping the various story blogs I have.  Most likely I will not be able to write something for every story blog every month (sorry kids and readers), but I will try my hardest.

I still entertain the notion of vlogging one of these days.  I had thought "I'll do it at the beginning of the new year."  But then the plague said, "I don't think so," and took not only beautiful and enchanting stage presence (NO ONE looks good when they're sick) as well as my voice (there were times I sounded more like a dude than I usually think I do giving Barry White a run for his money, and then there were times where I thought I could have subbed for the Cave of Wonders from Aladdin.)

Oh well... maybe some day... when I grow the babbalones to do it.  (That was a reference my Seester would get.)

Anyway, I posted the story yesterday.  I don't think anyone has read it yet.  Oh well.  I'm not sure anyone even reads these posts or any of my stories.  Well, I know some of my friends do, but my secret desire is to have subscribers and a readership, but that'll take some time, I guess.  Or maybe it'll never happen.

But there I go.  Being shiny happy positive again.  Why?  Because that's how I roll.

All right.  I reached my other goal of blogging about this before I head out for the night.  My friends have moved into a new place, and we're going to listen to our SoCal friends' internet radio show Dusty's World at the Hall of Justice (aka their new abode).  I need to run some personal errands, grab some grub for myself as well as some apple juice for the Jager tonight, and I'm good to go.

Later my lovelies!

Have Goodness!

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