The short story is an imploding universe. It has all the boil of energy inside it. A novel has shrapnel going all over the place. You can have a mistake in a novel. A short story has to be perfect — Colum McCann
Last week, I finished writing the first draft of my short story. But it’s still untitled. I always have this problem. I suck at story titles. Regardless, it will be my submission for the anthology the writing group I participate in is planning to put together and publish later this year.
Well, I hope it will be published later this year. Within the group, there are still stories to be written and logistics to be formally ironed out because everybody needs to be on a the same page when it comes to executing this project. Otherwise, we’ll end up in a quagmire of shit that will bog down the process.
Anyway, the normal reaction to completing something you’ve put your creative blood and energy into, is to be excited. Am I excited the first draft is done? Yes, but I’m not jumping up and down for joy. There is still more work to do. It’s only the first draft. I’m more relieved than excited. I was more excited during the writing process. It’s always about the journey, not the destination.
When I finished the first draft of The Raven Sonata, I knew I was done with the characters. There was nothing more to add to their story beyond the pages of the book. It was easy to let them go and have no regrets.
But I don’t think I’m done with the two main characters from the short story. When these two crash-landed into my writing sandbox, I instinctively knew they weren’t planning on leaving after the short story was written. It seems they have other stories they might want me to tell on their behalf. It doesn’t hurt that the three of us had a ton of intense fun together in the sandbox. I think I can do more with them. They like being around me and I like being around them. I can’t say goodbye to them yet.
While we make for a hair-raising threesome, I need them to wander off for a bit and make their own trouble while I return to the characters from the second novel I want to write. Maybe the only time I’ll hear from the two clowns will be the phone call they make asking me to bail them out of jail. Yep, they’re that kind of trouble.
Right now, I don’t know where they’ve wandered off to but I can still feel them. They can’t be too far away.
It’s going to be interesting switching gears and settling in with working on the second novel again while still dealing with whatever editing the short story might require. Nothing like a nimble workout for the mind considering how different the two writing projects are.
I’ll find out soon enough just how nimble my brain really is. This could be scary.