Gimme a Jawbreaker – Writing 52 Short Stories In 52 Weeks
What does one do when life, after a chaotic interlude, begins its return to normalcy?
Bite off more than one can chew, of course!
In the fashion of a teenager vowing to never drink again after his first hangover, a big part of me wonders if I’m going to regret this decision in a week:
In addition to posting every day on the blog, starting July 31st, I’m going to finish a short story a week for the next 52 weeks. Once completed, I will post each story here.
But it will be done, because as Ray Bradbury says:
“It’s not possible to write 52 bad short stories in a row.”
I’m betting I’ll really test the truth of that statement. It’s all in the name of practice, though.
At the moment, I’m writing fiction every day, but I feel like I’m not making any forward progress. The wordcount is there, but in the past couple of months, I’ve lost steam over three different stories. I’m never sure if I’m writing a novel, a novella, or a short story. And I get stuck and find that, hey, there’s no deadline, so I’m in no hurry to work myself out of a bind.
A finished story a week gives me a deadline and no room to waffle.
The critical voice in the back of my head tells me that this will be one more year that puts me behind the eight-ball. It will be the middle of 2018 and I still won’t have a novel to publish.
But you know what? Just like most first graders, I’m not ready for calculus. I keep telling myself that the race to be an author of a published novel is a marathon, but I keep looking for those shortcuts.
So go ahead, bring on the jawbreaker. By the end of this experiment, I’m sure to need a maxillofacial surgeon, but I’ll have 52 finished stories under my belt and if I haven’t learned anything, well, at least I’ll know that I’m better off twiddling with bits and bytes than stories and imagery.