On Embarking Upon a New Story

Baltimore’s City Paper is running their annual short fiction contest.

I knew it was coming up, but I didn’t know precisely when. I finally noticed it, in Wednesday’s edition (which, for whatever reason, I didn’t pick up until Thursday).

The stories are due on the fifth. Friday. Guy Fawkes Day.

I knew the story I wanted to submit. I hadn’t started putting down words, except for two paragraphs that go at the end. I was letting the story percolate in my mind. It’s dark and it’s edgy and there’s a moment of raw horror in it.

To be honest, I didn’t want to write it.

Friday morning, I started the writing

I didn’t write a lot, honestly. It’s a page. It’s not in my “style” at all. (Yes, I have a style. I’d never noticed before then.)

I’ve written two more pages. I think it will finish at six pages total. Fifteen hundred words, roughly. Maybe a little less.

(By way of contrast, this morning’s blog post on the Rally For Sanity clocks in a hair under 3,000 words, and I wrote that in less than the running time of Green Day’s 21st Century Breakdown.)

If you follow me on last.fm and see me listening to, oh, something like Dido, I’m probably working on this short story. Because this story reaches down into some very dark places inside, places I don’t like to look, places I pretend don’t exist, and I need the light to counteract the dark.

I’ll be done well before Friday. 🙂

I do need to come up with a title, though. The title I have in mind right now is way too much of a spoiler for the plot twist…

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