Tuesday, July 17, 2012

The First Week

It's the end of the first week of the Bradbury Method - 52 short stories in a year - and so far, things are actually going pretty well. The point of the...experiment I guess is the best word, is to just get the stories out, not necessarily have them polished.

So, on that front, I'm succeeding. While I didn't allow myself as much writing time as I would've liked this week, I still managed to churn out what I consider to be a pretty good - if unpolished - short story. It needs some tweaks and some expansion on certain points, but I got out the beginning, middle and ending.

Amusingly enough, it wasn't the story I initially sat down to write. I started writing it and got a page or so in when I had to drop it because I had started it in my Gmail drafts at work when there was nothing to do and then I left for home. I don't have the internet at home so it was a few days before I finally got it off the email to be able to work on it at home. By the time I did that, I had completely forgotten the road I was originally going to take with the story.

I just stared at it. For what seemed like an hour. Just looking at this thing I had written that clearly started with some intent and then just stopped. It stopped on an important, twist moment, too. One that I didn't remember where I was taking it.

So, I made something else up. I took up the tattered bottom of the story and I stitched it up with something new and came up with a pretty appropriate ending for the story. What's great about this, is that I've rarely ever done this before. Usually, if I start a short story and come back to it some time afterward and I've forgotten what exactly I had originally intended, I leave it and start something else. Not this time. I swore to myself if I started a story, I would finish it. And I did. And it felt good.

I've been reading a lot of Etgar Keret recently as well and he showed me that no matter how bizarre the idea is, it can totally work in the story as long as the language is good enough and the story takes you somewhere deep. Also, that it doesn't matter how short the story is.

Okay. I got this. Maybe.