Sunday, August 14, 2011

The beginning is the hardest part. Except for the middle and the end.

So, I've been sitting here trying to convince myself to write something. Not something for the blog, but fiction. A story.

Several weeks ago Queenie posted, "Have you ever had that feeling, the one where you tell everyone that your real ambition is to write, when really all you do is read what other people write?" and I keep thinking about it. I went through this six or so years ago.

I'm sure I've written about it before, but I stopped telling people that I want to be a writer a long time ago. A writer I am not. I do not write. There was a time there, almost two years ago, where I was writing something, that no one here would have read, almost every day. I was working myself up to writing something that I could maybe, possibly send off to someplace where they read the writing and mull it over and decide whether it might work for their publication, or not. Probably not. I was close, though.

I had started a story. I had written down the basic ideas. I'd created a very bear bones outline. (The beginning. A bit about the middle. A huge question mark for the end.) Then I left a job where I was comfortably miserable for a job that's so excruciating, for me, that I'm having trouble focusing enough to read. (It took me three weeks to read The Bourne Identity, and that's not a tough book. I've only read the first section of A Dance with Dragons and can't get any farther. I did, however, breeze through The Phantom Tollbooth, but that book is special.) I no longer even write for that site that I frequent and those were just stories based on a TV show that ended nearly a decade ago.

However, I have ideas.

Ideas are so easy for me. They just bloom and neurons fire and thoughts that seem random start to connect into something larger. If I'm good, I write them down so I'll have them for later. I'm rarely good.

Last week I figured out the beginning, middle, and end of a story idea I've been thinking about for a year. It's not meant for the general public. I've got it figured out, though. But I can't write it. When I try to start my stomach lurches and I'm overcome by a sense of nothingness. The idea is still there, in my head. I can see how it needs to get down in the the bits of the computer. I can't type though. I can't focus. My fingers just run across the keys, feeling them, but not pressing down. And I move off to something else: a funny cat video, or the television, or the darkness under the sheet and blankets. I still feel it pressing on my skull. It wants to get out, but when I tried to type it earlier, nothing. nothing

When I picked my parents from the train station on Friday my mother told me that my brother wants to make an illustrated story about a mythical American animal. She said he didn't want my help, though, because I wouldn't be interested in doing it. The truth is I would be interested. In fact I thought of a story for the animal yesterday, but when I went to e-mail my idea to him I typed two words then couldn't type anymore. Partly because I don't know if it's the sort of story he wants, but mostly because I just couldn't because even if he didn't like the story idea he can start moving in the right direction by knowing what he doesn't want to do. Hell, even when he reads this and says he'd like to know I don't know if I'd be able to type the answer to him. At this point, I don't even know if I could speak it to him.


Anonymous said...

I've always wanted just the facts of the critters put down in one place, as told by grizzled ol' prospectors n'the like. What are they and what do they do, as it were.

bigfatdieter said...

I so know that feeling. So many ideas, just no idea how to implement them.