Okay, so I’ve been trying to get my long-stalled writing career back on track. I’ve been writing a lot of short stories, and just completed a screenplay that I’ve been showing around to fellow writers for feedback and editorial suggestions. But for the past two weeks or so, I’ve been stumped for ideas for new stories.
Of course in all the writing manuals I’ve read, and all the writers I’ve talked to, the advice that everyone seems to stress is to communicate with other writers - for feedback on work, story writing suggestions, etc. Obviously, we can’t show our works around on the boards (space limitations & such), but we can discuss what we’re writing about and share comments about it, if people are so inclined.
To give you an idea of my own writing - the screenplay I’ve written is a vampire movie set in NYC’s east village club scene. (It’s actually even a bit dated, since the club scene in the east village seems to have changed significantly since I wrote my first draft of it a few years earlier). The short stories I’ve written started as light character studies based on real folks who I’ve met / been acquainted with, but lately they tend to center on a gay couple (one a neurotic upper west sider, the other an ex-‘Chelsea boy’) - sort of my own backlash to the neutered, mincing doofuses on “Will & Grace.” But, as I said above, I’ve been at a loss to come up with a new idea for a story.
I have a couple of short stories that are “done” to the point where I need to decide what I’m going to do with them and revise them, and am working on a children’s fantasy book. Also playing around with the idea of expanding one of the short stories into a book, as I’ve had several suggestions to do so. It’s set in a lumber camp in the 40’s, and I have tons of material from my family to use to create a gen-you-wine historic setting.
I also have a couple non-fiction things floating around, as it’s interesting and seems to have more of a chance of paying some bills. My first paying piece was just published in a local magazine (I’m published! whoo hoo) and I have another “nature” sort of piece that I’m about to start shopping around.
I personally like the boards at Zoetrope.com for getting/giving reviews, but am intrigued by the idea of a SD based writing/critiquing group, since you all are the smartest people on the Web that I know.
In the past two months I wrote two novels (a.k.a. the discipline does equal product projects). Now I’m trying to strike a balance between my old writing habits and the new ones I picked up. So far the old are winning, which is bad given that the old habits consist of obsessive world-building followed by false starts. Soon I’m going to start a fantasy novel about a man who falls in love with the immortal queen of his kingdom. In order to compete with her other suitors he has to seek immortality.
My two writers’ groups had to be disbanded, so I’ve been without one for a couple of years now. I’ll take a look at the critters.
I’ve written three screenplays, but my primary focus is on the short story. I have several ideas/notes for more, but it’s a matter of sitting down and working on them, of course. I wrote only two last year and I’m a bit embarrassed that I didn’t do more.
I’ve given up on fiction and have offered my writer’s soul to Dex as a Resident Pundit. sigh I tell myself it’s what always I wanted to do as my only career goal ever was to be The Next Mike Royko but the reality is that I have no stories to tell and cannot imagine any characters with whom I wish to spend months developing a decent story.