Thursday, April 21, 2011

Thoughts And Words

No, I didn't drop off the face of you-at least not intentionally. I know it's been a very long time since I've written here, and I feel ashamed for it. Err, not really, but that's beside the point. I have been neglecting my blogging duties. I should had have my Blogger Badge™ revoked by now, the Publishing Police must be napping. OK, what have I done lately?

So there I was, in the field (and by "in the field" I mean in a heated building in the Hoenfels Training Area in Hoenfels, Germany, not an actual field) working from 9 PM to 9 AM for three weeks straight, no days off. That kinda sucked, but I had time to think. And what did I think about? I know it's going to be hard to believe, but I thought about writing. Writing? But I haven't written anything here for ages. If I'd been thinking about writing why didn't I just write here? I have an answer for that. I was not thinking about blogging writing, I was thinking about writing writing, as in fiction writing. I heard that, I do not write fiction here. This blog is the honest to Spaghetti Monster truth.

Was that too obscure or obtuse a reference? Don't know what obscure or obtuse means? Never mind.

I have tried to write fiction before, but it never seemed to work out. I mean, it's daunting just to think about doing it. I actually want to create something original and have other people read it. I know the stuff here is original, but it's all me. I want to challenge myself a bit and write about something I don't necessarily know. And that lead me to the idea of writing fiction. Good thing for me I had a story idea or two, or so I thought at the time. I wrote a beginning to...something. I don't know what yet, could be a short story, could be longer. I also threw together a short outline for a story. Unfortunately, the outline has one problem-lack of a complete plot. After a week of fleshing out characters and an outline, I shelved my idea.

After I returned home I was still thinking about writing, about the characters that I had outlined, and I realized I needed a bit of help if I was going to get this right. First step: Get books on writing. OK, did that and have read the first one. After I read the rest comes step two: Read more books. Huh? I've read hundreds-if not thousands-of books already in my life, why would I need to read more? Because now that I know what to look for (6 layers of plot, theme, 3 act structure, style, etc...) I can analyze the books in the category that I'm shooting for and see how the professionals do it. Third: Practice writing a little bit each day. I was thinking that this would probably be the hardest step for me. It's not a problem for me to find the time to write, it's just the idea that when I do start to write I will be bad at it. Then I realized: Of course I'll be bad, that's the point of practicing every day, to be less bad as time goes on.

And that's my plan, for now at least. It's not much, but it's a start. Do I expect to become a world famous author out of this? No, but I might be able to self-publish something. If I don't get that far I'll still be happy creating something, even if I'm the only one to see it.

I can take one consolation from my blog. I have written here a long time now, and I have gotten better. I just need to refocus that experience in a new way. Well, here goes nothing.

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