I thought I was starting ahead of the game. I thought I was going in with nearly 10,000 words, my personal goal not being to necessarily write a lot of words, but to write fiction every day.
Turns out, my noveling process doesn’t jive with the “must churn out words” model. Also, the subject of my novel–on both a personal and academic level for me–is challenging and fraught. Ask me bout it sometime. I’ll tell all.
Of course, I guess it should be noted that this whole thing isn’t going to work for every writer.
But I decided to try a different tack.
See, I’ve been dreaming up this series of short stories inspired by or loosely based on (or maybe characterized by) lyrics from the band The Shins. I think they write the most beautiful, literary lyrics. Plus, I love their music.
My idea was that I’d kind of use the lyrics as a prompt and then write the world, a song at a time.
So except for one exception, when my writing denigrated to a regurgitation of Wayne’s World, the prompt-to-1700-word-story is a much more comfortable model for me.
Here’s an excerpt (Wayne’s World Style)
“What about genius?” I ask her.
“What about it?”
“What do you think it is?”
“I don’t know. Why?”
“Seems like a reasonable question.”
“To Whom, you mean.”
“To whom, then.”
“To anybody. What makes genius. And I don’t mean IQ points. I mean, describe a genius. is genius a general category, or can it be limited to a certain skill or ideology?”
“I guess. Either? Both?”
“Right. That’s what I’m asking.”
“I don’t know why you would be.”
“Why are you pissed about this?”
“You refuse to engage. It’s okay. Why don’t you go take a ride and listen to that justin bieber record.”
“Bullshit. I know you bought it. I saw the receipt in the garbage.”
“Yeah. For my niece, ass.”
“Indeed. I’m going.”
Sometimes I think my entire adulthood has been defined by my unreasonable amount of love for Wayne’s World.
I mean, it’s about more than my extensive collection of nametags and hair nets.
Sometimes she goes, and sometimes she stays. When she stays, she goes in the other room and reads serial romances with titles like Prodigy of a Wolf and Wolves of a Beautiful Hill. How these titles are a more valuable pastime than videogames, I am not sure I will ever understand. At least I can win money playing video games. Not that I do. But that’s not the point.