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Why I’m Doing This

30 Apr

I’ve probably already written about this, but it’s a new month, so time for my opinion to change. Our loyal follower (and commenter) Scott had an interesting thing to say about this project. He wishes that instead of churning out 12 mediocre stories, he’d rather we work them more thoroughly and only produce one every other month or so. That’s a very valid point. While I’m not one who usually does many rewrites of ANY of my writing (two of my favorite plays are basically unchanged since I first wrote them), I can see where he’s coming from. These are NOT polished stories, and in several instances they were written in a day or two (ignoring brainstorming time).

However, in looking back at my four months so far, I think I’ve written one very good story (January), one decent story (February), and one mediocre story (March). I’m still having a bit of trouble seeing what I think of April’s. I like it, but I’d be more curious to see what others think of it. This may be one of those rare times when I really never develop a full opinion about one of my pieces.

So why am I doing this project? It was Aaron’s baby and I definitely elbowed my way into the project (originally, he had wanted me to simply help him out in reading his stories and editing/offering advice, but I thought “Hell, I want to write more than I do!”) So first and foremost this project was about keeping me writing. I have always enjoyed it, but since moving west, writing has fallen way down the totem pole of my free time allocation. So that was #1. #2 – I historically have written best with deadlines and/or with certain restrictions put on my stories. One of the aforementioned favorite plays was called Deadline because it was written within ridiculous parameters. I haven’t read it in a while (I wrote it probably 10 years ago), but I remember being quite proud of it.

Nowhere did I anticipate publishing any of these. Aaron had (probably still has) it as a goal for him, but I have a dozen other things I’ve already written that are more polished. HOWEVER, I’m seeing that it is doing some good. I’m coming up with pretty good ideas here, and some of them (either in their current state or having been dissected) could very well find themselves reused in some form. Either as a stand-alone longer story, or ideas might get reused if I ever start that next novel. And that new novel… who knows, maybe THAT I’ll try to publish.

I’m sending these out because I want feedback as a writer, and as an idea-man. Plus, nearly everything I do creatively is for me first, but I of course want people to like it. I’ve only ever sold 100 of my CDs or so (order them here!) because the project was originally just for me, but I’ll be damned if I don’t like hearing that people enjoy this track or that track. So yeah, I’d love all the reviews to be glowing, but I won’t really develop as a writer that way. And that’s the purpose of this.

Will I go back after the year is done and touch some of these stories up? Will I/we continue this into 2013? I have no idea. Alls I know is that I’m enjoying doing it right now.

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1 Comment

Posted by on April 30, 2012 in a bit about me, short story project 2012

 

One response to “Why I’m Doing This

  1. Carol Bell

    April 30, 2012 at 3:42 pm

    Derek,
    Speaking of old writings, did Aaron or Julia tell you that I found programs from All in the Timing and The Unusual Suspects when I was going through some storage boxes in NJ last month? Brought back memories of first getting to know Julia.
    I am truly enjoying the fact that you and Aaron are writing. While I see Scott’s point, as you say, you will both probably still churn something out at the last minute, regardless of how long you have to produce a final product. If you go to every other month, I’m afraid the project will lose its momentum.
    And my hope is that you will find a way to publish the stories together, since the entire premise of two writers using the same topic.sentences, etc. is so creative!

     

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