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Gut check

Things are moving along, and course corrections are needed, but overall the “1000 Day to an MFA” program is on track.

I’ve stopped reading Huckleberry Finn – no offense to Mark. The voice was fine, and historical nuggets were interesting (and I love history), but the story was just not enough to keep me going.

NOTE: The best short story I read last week, and I read several, was The Turing Machines of Babel by Eric Schwitzgebel. Apex magazine issue 98. ( or Amazon link)

I have a copy of Zen in the Art of Writing by Ray Bradbury which I’ll be starting this weekend. I’ll use this extra time from dropping Finn, to start on the next reading book: Red Rising by Pierce Brown. The person who recommended it said it was dense and clocks in at 401 pages. So, times a’ wasting.

An inspiring event occurred with the other writer, “Ian” (not real name), that is in my group. He finished his first short story, a horror suspense style story. Took him eight days. Any good? Well, to be fair, Ian is already very good, and his first drafts are better than my tenth drafts, but for eight days, this was a solid story and well crafted. We spent an hour+ talking about the layers, lamp posts, callbacks, etc. he wrote into the narrative, some he didn’t even realize. Ten thousand hours to become a professional and let your subconscious write for you? (“10k hours” has been debunked by the way, still, sometimes you go on autopilot.)

I’ve been able to continue with micro “free writing” exercises in the ten to fifteen minute range, but still struggling to get a solid hour for pure writing. Even so, came up with the start of an idea for a short story in the world of a novel I’ve been working on for years. Got me excited about it again. Although, ten minute sessions do not lend themselves to a lot of crafting, and I feel those snippets of writing will take a lot to knit back together. Still… progress.

Expect a wrap-up for the month of January as the next post.

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