Wednesday, April 14, 2010

What in the heck am I doing?

My mind filled with images of rabbits running helter-skelter. My lack of a sufficient muse wasn’t for lack of ideas. I had more than a dozen. My problem revolved around the task of managing them. Damn rabbits. It felt like herding cats. I looked back to Mr. Steinbeck. “Could I trouble you with another question?”
“If you must.” He set his pen aside. Resignation, or was it irritation, clouded his features.
“I don’t think...”
“You don’t think? How can you possibly write?” He sounded so much like Doc on Cannery Row.
“That’s not what I meant. I’m not sure if I know how to handle the rabbits. They fly all over my mind.”
“Flying rabbits, huh? It’s not easy. Imagination and writing takes discipline. Focus on one idea. See where it goes. Watch it blossom into characters and a plot as they interact with each other.”
“That sounds like a lot of work.”
“It is. It is.” The lamp on his table began to flicker and he stopped to adjust the wick. The faint smell of burnt kerosene wafted in the air as he turned it too high. “Sorry about that. Let’s see where was I? I spend an hour or two every day dreaming while I’m awake. Then it’s pen to paper.”
That sounded a lot like what I did. Maybe I needed a little more discipline to stick to one story, one plot, one central character. “I think...”
“Ah now you’ve switched to thinking. That’s an improvement.” A grin creased his face.
“Yes. I think I need to narrow my focus. You’ve helped. Thanks.” I turned to go.
“One last thought,” he said, “the profession of book writing makes horse racing seem like a solid, stable business.” Then he laughed.
Here’s the link to my web page: .
Until next time, that’s it from The Storyman ….

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