Tuesday, May 10, 2005

revelations in bad writing

My friends, the muse has bitten, but apparently failed to break the skin.

I was taking a break yesterday and my mind wandered to science fiction and comic books and modern lit and just generally good writing. I can’t wait to start reading for leisure again this summer. Eggers has a new book out, and I think Michael Chabon (pronounced “Smith”) does too, and I know Neil Gaiman has Anansi Boys coming soon. And without knowing a thing about it, I’ve been convinced by Jess that I need to read Gates of Fire.

Whenever I start to think about really talented writing, I, of course, start to think it’s high time for me to put that novel that’s in me down on paper. Damned if I know what it is, but that’s the feeling I get anyway.

Unfortunately, most of my fictional writing boils down to one-trick-pony gimmicks that do poorly when expanded more than a few pages. “And it turned out he was actually a bug. The end.” “Did you get it? They were giants. The end.” “But of course, it wasn’t a funeral… it was a wedding. The end.” It seems as I finish each of my short stories, the writer in me is supposed to wring his hands and laugh, knowing that he’d tricked his readers into thinking one thing for forty paragraphs, only to have their world turned on ear in the last one. “Mwah-hah-ha! They’ll never see THAT coming. The carpet-bagger was actually the devil!”

But, as I said, the muse has bitten. Naturally, it’s going to have to take a number, since school doesn’t end for another two days, and after that I have some non-school funtimes to take care of, like reintroducing myself to my family, my friends, and beer.

1 comment:

Jess said...

I'll get you our second copy. Oh, yes, we have a loaner.