I started a new short story.
I’m not sure if it’s actually been years, or only feels that way. In recent years, my focus has been on novels and podcasts. Outside of Megan Mayhew Bergman and Dan Chaon, I’m not sure I’ve even read many short stories. (I started Jess Walter’s We Live in Water last night.)
Whether reading or writing, t’s all been longer works of fiction…
There are few things I enjoy more in life than writing short stories. With novels, I lean toward more serious things.
While I’ve written [more than] my share of serious short stories, short fiction allows me to focus on anything that comes to mind — often something hovering between serious, humorous, and quirky. (I’ve also written my share of all-out-ridiculous short fiction…things I’d never devote the length of a novel to writing.)
I love that! (And missed it…)
The Old Writing Group
Yesterday I emailed my best bud, Deacon. Deacon is the friend with whom I do the annual writing retreat. Deacon is 1/3 of an old writing group I was in. Without Deacon, I’m not sure I’d be the writer I am today. (I’ve lost count of how many times it’s seemed like Deacon knows more about what I’m trying to do with my writing than me — and said just the right thing at the right time to keep me on track.)
Yesterday I emailed Deacon, chatting about how I miss many aspects of the old writing group. We challenged each other to produce [mostly] short fiction, and some of the things written during that time are the best things I’ve ever written.
The New Challenge
I know I’ve written about Not About Lumberjacks quite a bit, lately. It’s new, so that excites me. But the reason it excites me is it makes producing short fiction a priority in my life again.
The thought of producing the show terrifies me in many ways. Sure, I have enough stories lying around that I could go several years without writing a thing, but I don’t want to find myself without some backlog of stories and always rushing to produce new work.
But thinking back to the old writing group, I know it’s possible to be busy with a day job, novels, life, and…still produce short fiction on a regular basis.
There’s a comfort in that.
Chill in the Air
This morning as I stepped out to get coffee with my wife before logging into work and beginning my day, there was a chill in the air. (A slight chill, but I’m not sure the last time I felt the 50s in north Texas.) While my wife and I chatted about what gear we’ll need while canoeing when the weather turns decidedly chilly (and even cold), all I could think about was the story I started last night. (There’s something about cooler weather and writing that goes so well together.)
The Saturday plan is to watch the sun rise while paddling on a local lake tomorrow…and then getting in some time with the current novel rewrite…
But after that, I can’t wait to get back to the first new short story started in years!