I’m sure most of us have experienced social situations, when after superficial greetings, pleasantries and platitudes have been exchanged, there follows deep sighs and uncomfortable silences. It can happen to both new and long acquaintances between loved ones and not so loved ones. A situation when you may simply have nothing new to say, or want to say something but don’t quite know how or even if it is appropriate to say it, plain boredom, or one or the other has said something to cause offence.
A writer may experience similar discomfort when afflicted by writer’s block. Indeed, when I reflect on my ramblings on this blog, I wonder how I have managed to keep this going on what is now my 78th blog post. But, I am a rambler at heart, which is often how I get my short stories going. I think of a simple premise, and ramble on about it my note book or on my computer until a story develops. When the story becomes boring or dries up then I will make something completely distracting happen.
I have found both in life and in my writing, during such moments, to say or write something distracting often helps. It is often the unexpected that makes what you have to say interesting. After all who wants predictability?
Naturally, when the first draft is completed there will be a lot of pruning to do, but I find my more unstructured approach particularly useful for short stories. For anything longer and my script writing I prefer to storyboard, and have a good plan.
My current project is: a man discovers he has been issued a parking ticket. It’s happened to me, as indeed to most of us. I wanted to examine this situation and turn it something that gets completely out of hand.
My previous project was about a shoplifter. What was his thoughts to drive him to do something completely out of character?
Simple everyday situations which we either experience or hear about. How to make it different.
I am sorry I haven’t published any of these on my blog. If I did I wouldn’t be able to enter them into competitions. Eventually I would like to publish them as an anthology.