Thursday, February 23, 2017

Writing: February 21st & 22nd

Words Written: 985
Total Words: 18,027

I finally made it to the library again today.  I had a bunch of overdue books, but the place was closed on both Sunday and Monday and I couldn't return them . . . though they still charged me for those two days, didn't they?  Anyhoo, I had forgotten my laptop and had to write in my notebook (which is fine, just less-efficient), and I thought I'd force myself to either write to "The End" or for a full hour, whichever came first.

But I found it difficult to concentrate.  I went to the second floor again, which is The Quiet Floor, you recall, where there are signs that say not to use your cellphone, not even to say, "Hey, I'm on the second floor of the library and people are giving me the stink-eye; can I call you back?"  I sat down, set my phone to Vibrate, and set the timer to go off in sixty minutes. 

I opened my notebook and tried to get the words flowing, but it just wasn't working.  There was a crying child somewhere on the floor (maybe in the vents or a trash can), and somebody's phone started to ring a couple cubicles away from mine.  They got to it after a couple rings, and were at least decent enough to head for the stairs when they took their call, but my concentration was broken.

A moment later, I tried to get back into the story, but boy, I got the feeling it was sucking and I'd be better off abandoning it and moving on to my next big project, which I believe I will be calling "Ten Thousand Coffins."*  But I forced myself to go on, figurin--

Nearby, somebody else's phone started to ring, and it took them five or six rings to get to it.  Angry heads were popping out of cubicles, and this guy at least apologized for the interruption.

I knew I only had a page or so more to go on the story, and my theory is that the worst completed story is better than the best forever-unfinished story, so I delved into it once again.  I had intended for the sucker to be a flash piece, and now it was getting to regular short story length, and it's just sad that I couldn't find a way to--

ANOTHER cellphone began to ring.  This was the third one in less than an hour, and it had some kind of Rock song as the ringtone (think it might have been Cradle of Filth's "Born in a Burial Gown," a favorite of my mother's).  Well, people made disgusted sounds, the guy answered it and said he couldn't talk right now, but the librarian had already slammed closed her copy of Mein Kampf to glare at him.

Now it was almost a Herculean task to get to the end of the story.  The constant interruptions were one thing, but my own apathy and laziness were neck and neck with them in an attempt to derail my productivity.  Suddenly, I wanted to look things up on Wikipedia, I wanted to check my email, I wanted to look around and see if any of the library patrons had brought breasts with them.  It was as if the powers that be did not want that awful short story to be finished.

But I put my head down, soldiering through despite the lack of inspiration, and got to the end of the story.  I was trying to decide whether to end it with dialogue or a line of description, when a horrendous beeping slapped me out of my daze, startling me and everyone around me.

It was the timer I'd set, blaring like a fire alarm, despite me having set my phone on Vibrate.  Well, I deserved the signs of the Evil Eye being sent my way, turned it off, and got the heck out of there.

After I wrote "The End," that is.

Words Written: 478
Total Words: 18,505

I didn't get much written on this day either.  I spent a bit of my writing time coming up with character names for my novella, deciding on Brooklyn Lisst, Karl Valencia, and Anton Supov, figuring that I'd try to have a bit of diversity in my Science Fiction.  I also wasted time doing math, trying to figure out how long it would take the ship to reach its destination (as long as something unforeseen doesn't happen, though here's a spoiler: it does), and how much the crew would age compared to the passengers (about twelve years).

I'm excited about the new project, and while that will inevitably fade, it's nice while it lasts.


*My Dog, that's a good title.  Even if the story turns out to be rubbish, at least I got the title right.


AspiR said...

That one of the characters is named Anton is a little ironic now. I checked the date to make sure this happened earlier.

Rish Outfield said...

Yeah, I was aware of that irony when I fixed all the "Antons" in my damn book, only to discover that one of the characters in my current work is Anton too. I wonder where the names come from, and how many times I've used the same names over various stories. Guess I should look for truly awful millennial names for my characters, like Big does.

manho valentine said...
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