January 12th, 2009



I am so happy! I finally found a group of people who talk intelligently without rancor on a wide variety of subjects, exhausting one before going onto another, exploring interesting byways, treating neophytes with diplomacy and taking even youths seriously.

This group will meet again in Feb. and has decided to do an all day (after church) deal, using the time to write an original 7500 word short story. I'm not sure I can TYPE 7500 words in one day... but no matter. Half of the fun is the journey.

They take their writing seriously. One counseled that with outlining, character sketches, and location scouting preparations, it should be do-able. I have a MUCH more chaotic creative process, and having been unable to do novels for most of my life, am a bit sour on short stories.

Of course, if one has a project they are in the middle of, continuing is an option. I decided to do just that -- 7500 words of editing in one day would probably be impossible, but I was game to go.

One day later -- I'm pecking away at current projects...

I finally get hungry. I decide to prepare something -- BAM!

I leave my food and move to a different chair from where my computer is set up, grab a clip board and didn't slow down until three pages of jottings, crazy situations, unique style of presentation, headings, bizarre/cryptic notes later, I wander off. I can't even remember what I was eating at first. I put plate and all in the fridge. It is now eight hours later, but I'm still not hungry.

But, I need to collect material to help get to the 7500 words.

(Note the music I'm playing... Outside, the blizzard just reformed and I can hear sleet/snow/ice/wind pinging on the north windows... We're forecast to have 50 mph winds blowing whatever around. I don't really care as long as the electricity doesn't go off. I don't HAVE to be anywhere until Feb. 9th. I ought to have quite a case of cabin fever by then if the phone doesn't keep ringing off and on...)
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    Whithin A Grey-Day Mood - Summer Thunder
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I am soliciting -- ideas.

Premise: In 7500 words or less, track a relationship through giddy, romantic courtship to marital bliss to marriage doldrums to divorce. (Yeah, right... I'm single and always have been. Good, realistic idea... oh, and I want to do it with deft humor and tongue-in-cheek satire).

So, I have one page of just that, which read well enough in a rough draft to get a laugh out of my sister, who was really too busy to mess with it at the time, but still felt its pull.

She gave me assurance of passing things on as she thought of them.

I primed the pump with one of my all time favorite MOM stories. I grew up seeing her run to the door, kiss dad (generally quite sedately, maybe even chastely, as they were NOT exhibitionists), take his lunch bag and hat and put them away.

One night, dad had to go out, and went to the hall closet -- no hat.

It turned up when Mom opened the refrigerator door... His lunch bag was in the closet.

Classic. (No, she's not blond.)

Another story I acquired had husband coming in from work and emptying his pockets onto the dresser top, so nothing got into the washing machine and gummed up the works. (Yes, he could and did repair them).

One night, his wife of many years entered and noted a rare $20 bill laying off to the side of the customary handful of change.

Surprised, the wife inquired, "What's that for?" pointing toward the large bill.

"Last night." (Yet, I knew this couple as staid, stolid people, not inclined to whimsey, nor sexual innuendo... both of which are welcome in the story, as long as not in bad taste.)

So, tell me your tales. Everything will be fictionalized, not attributed, in the story and to the writing group. Credit gladly given here in the journal...

Topics: The Kitchen Raider
      Life Lessons
      Battle of the Sexes...
      (to be extended as inspiration hits)