Thursday, August 7, 2014

Telling A Story

A few years ago,  I was at a  party standing next to a novelist and a television journalist.  Both were well known in our area.  "G," I said, "I just figured this out; you lie for a living."  He had a sly smile, creeping through a well trimmed beard.  "Me too!"  The journalist said.  And we all went away happy.

So, I'm joining their camp.  But I might be doing them one better.

I'm writing fiction, the bad kind.  A lot of people think that literary fiction is the epitome of the writing craft and some people write really great literary fiction, two of them are friends, Steven Mayfield and Judith McConnell Steele. Bless them.  They are right.

The rest of us just want to write genial books that tell a great story.  We don't mind car chases and sex scenes.  In my case, my heros are 60-plus women, and although sex is still part of their lives, we won't be playing that out on anybody's camera of the mind.  We won't snicker if somebody       Harry & Oliver, respositories of my grandfathers'          
encloses a recipe or we lapse into purple             spirits.  Regal story tellers, both of them.
prose in a  given instant.  If there's an inside
joke somewhere, well, we'll see where it leads.
We welcome adventure, risk,
the good/bad conflict, true love, puppies.

You get the drift.

                               The little guy with the nose?  My anti-procrastination device.  
                                                       Got him at an Art Fair in Santa Cruz.  Works.

I'm well into my first book.  A few years ago I was reading a science book, a beloved one, and there was an artifact that struck such a chord, all the chimes went off,  About the same time, a cousin had done a generational chart going back to the 1700s, maybe a little further.  And two women had these regal names, well, one of them was regal, the other was trouble.  Those names stuck with me, and low and behold, I had an idea for a novel.

So, I am making that come into being.  It is such big fun.  Little jokes come at me faster than I can write them down.  Characters show up, unaccounted for.  The last one: A seven-foot-tall Masaai, wearing a steel grey suit and a flame red shirt and tie, hand made in Germany.  Plot twists come early in the morning.  My title:  Valley of Wicked Surprise

I've written for years,  More essays and non-fictions stories than I can count.  I had to work ever so hard at all of them.  I'm smart enough, but trust me, in my local writing groups there are people who beat me hands down, all of them in fact.  This kind of writing comes easy,  I might be made for it.

Wish me luck.

   Plot points.  You want to be able to move them around for while.

1 comment:

  1. A fun and informative post! I like seeing your writing process with sticky notes.