I don’t always notice the comments people leave on this site. Part of that is that I get so few of them but the other reason is I don’t always notice. This comment was important because it was an affirmation that I should write a story that I shared the idea for, and I really should do it. I need to carve out the time for the writing. It really isn’t that hard. It is what I am doing not and as we have discussed before ten, twenty, or thirty minutes of writing is longer than people think.
The part of writing I struggle with is what I think of as slapping down the clay. I used to joke that I don’t write first drafts. That my first few drafts are run through my head and by the time I write things down it is at least the third draft. Then it is copy editing and maybe a few sentence restructures and it is done.
That isn’t the way it needs to work. I have the seed of an idea that I can’t get to germinate. I need to slap that clay down. Let the story be unformed in its first draft. It is in the second and third revisions that the story needs to take shape.
Revising is about carving away the excess. It is about getting to the root of the story. Shaping it into something that is a little more refined. The germ of the idea I have is a haunted house tale about a pet sitter. It isn’t that hard. This is my life, and once I start writing it will get easier.
The funny thing is I had a couple other pet sitter related horror stories come into my mind. The first was I had a cat I was taking care of that I never saw but I did see a hairball and it was massive. My first thought upon seeing it was maybe I’m lucky if I don’t meet the cat that produced that. The second seed of an idea came to me while walking a 198 lbs Grate Dane as he lunged at a passing pedestrian and imagining walking a beast of some sort that needs to devour a live human at least once a week. I have fed some animals a special diet but never anything like that.
That is three stories. Right there we are almost a third of the way through a short horror anthology of pet sitting tales. I am sure I could come up with some more if I got started, but I just have to get started and that sometimes is the hardest part. But I will tell you the affirmation from that one comment makes me want to start.