Friday, 8 October 2010

Short Stories

Been a while huh?

Summer holidays, the getting-back-to-work period where everything seems to happen at once.
Then more holidays. More work. Friends staying over...

(no excuses though...)

so. What have been up to more recently? (my memory doesn't go all the way back to almost two months ago...)

Good question!

Well, several things.
I've written a short piece for an art exhibit I went whilst in Lisbon this last July. It's for an artist called João Palla and I'm just waiting for his reply to a few questions of mine before I sent it to him.

I've also written a relatively long text to a good friend of mine, Joana Bértholo. She's a writer (published!) and she's participating in THIS.
She sent me questions 2, 15, 18, 21, 22, 23 and 24 and I wrote anything that I felt might be relevant to her debate.
And, because of question 24 (about genetic manipulation, human beings and artificial life) I might be doing a book for this year's NaNoWriMo around this theme, an idea that's been in my head for probably some ten years now...
(if it doesn't let go it's because it needs to be written...)

I've written three short stories (from 2000 to 3000 words each) with death as the main theme. I'm planning on sending them to a few friends just for fun - but I've been lazy to compile the mailing list...
I'd really like to send at least one thing a month but... knowing my rhythms, this is probably another chimera of mine...
In any case, the first story is about a guy addicted to running. The other is about a being that knows the entirety of his life (echoes of Vonnegut's Slaughterhouse Five...). The final one is, of the three, the one closest to what I ultimately want to offer a glimpse at, which is the realisation of death. But, of the three is the one that still needs more work - even though I do like the structure. There's an ongoing narration of an event with sudden flashbacks. Somehow these devices seem to work pretty well. For me at least...

Land Of Fog Revision continues! Of course. What do we care about deadlines?!
To be perfectly honest, I thought that this third (or is it fourth?!) draft would be easier. But, it seems to me that until I get to a fourth draft it's never gonna be easy...

For a good while I was incredibly frustrated with this. Which in turn caused revision to slow down (that and the fact that I was somewhat jaded with the material...). But I'm accepting the slowness of this process and trying not to worry too much about it. It'd be nice to have it ready before November but, if it doesn't happen, I'll just plunge head on to NaNoWriMo and think about it later.

My only question is if I should write the second part (of three) of the Fog trilogy. It's to be called Land Of Mists. I've already written quite a few ideas for it and I know exactly where it must end.
The advantage of doing this is that the setting and where I want to take this story is very present in me.
The downside is that I want to leave it behind for a while.

But, in fact, writing this down has made me think that the first option is better than the second. I can hold on for another couple of months. Unavoidably in January (if I do go to my meditation retreat) I'll have to leave all these stories behind so... might as well take advantage of having the story so clear in my head. Hopefully the new storyline and the new characters will refresh the whole thing.

I've also written some other short stories that I'm compiling for my little cousins. They're falling under the umbrella of BBT (I don't want to give out the title should they be reading this by some chance...) and they're more or less playful adventure stories with some twists and weird stuff thrown into the mix. My initial idea was to have a story per little cousin (that'd be five...) in which each of them would get to play the hero and be the main character. The tough thing was to find something that echoed their personality - which was a hard thing to do for I tend to play with them more than anything. I don't really know that much about their personal tastes and dreams - we meet only rarely. But I think I've got things that they'll identify with and enjoy.
And I was very happy when my oldest cousin suggested to me the setting that I was already envisioning in my head!
Right now I must have some seven or eight stories. A couple I've written beginning to end, either dialogue or plot. But most are still in an embryonic stage. There's also stuff written down on paper, scattered around... However I try to organise, inspiration comes when it pleases and not always I have a keyboard close by... Probably some five or ten thousand words by now - which I think will be enough to work into a small book (thirty to forty thousand). There is no end in sight. In fact what I wanted the most was to create a setting for stories for them.

At least that I have got. Now it's time.
And work!


No comments: