Thursday, February 27, 2014

A Short Pause

"Male Angel Pointing Up" by
I'm running a little late. Normally I have a post ready to go one or two days in advance. I hate procrastinating, and try to have my projects finished well before deadline.

Well, this week I'm distracted. I have a short story due tomorrow, and I just finished the requested edits for it. Yay me. It's been on my mind ever since I took the assignment, and I wish I could say I enjoyed it.

I did two things I never do as a writer.  #1, I wrote a short story. #2, I 'pantsed' it.

I haven't written a short story since highschool. Essays, sure. Short stories, no. My brain just doesn't work that way. I'm not accustomed to writing my fictional ideas in 5000 words or less. It feels...confining.

And I'm not a 'pantser'. For those of you who don't understand writer slang, a pantser is a writer who jots down their stories as they come along, without a solid plan about where it's going or how it will end. I know one who finds it exciting to work that way. She can't wait to see what happens next.

I can't work that way. I find that if I don't have an outline, and a clear idea of where I'm going, I'll probably never finish. In fact, I'm shocked that I DID finish.

Am I sorry I did it? NO. I did it because I wanted to try something different. I had to get out of my comfort zone, and exercise my brain. I wanted to challenge myself and learn new things. In fact, I'm proud of myself for doing it. I came up with a story idea off the top of my head, and executed it without knowing where I was going. I made it! Whew!

I also held a great contest to name it. Congratulations and thank you to Amanda Phillips for the great title "The Guardian's Angel". Love it!

The story is going to be part of a collection called 'Suppose' and is the brainchild of author Kathy Steinemann. I will keep you all posted about its publishing date and other information.

In the meantime, here's a link I found today that reminded me of how important writing exercises are, and how brilliant they can be. Number Two and Number Five are the scariest for me, but Number Nine will be the one I'm thinking of next time Spartacus Jones starts staring at me.

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