Ray Bradbury once said, “Write a short story every week. It’s not possible to write 52 bad short stories in a row.” My short form discipline has always needed work. All of my ideas are too big and need editing; I suspect that some of them would work better as short pieces than novels. With this in mind, I’ve decided to take up Ray Braddy Burs challenge and write 52 short stories over the next 52 weeks. The challenge will follow these 3 rules:
- Each story will have a minimum word count of 500 words. I would rather make this minimum word count 1k, but a lot of literary journals take shorter pieces too, and I’d like to challenge myself to be a little more concise.
- Each story will be finished in time to receive one edit. This edit might not make it “submission ready” but a little polish will be necessary for rule 3.
- I will publish each story I write on my blog beginning next Monday.
I came up with these guidelines as I lay in bed last night. I do a lot of my heavy thinking right before I go to sleep, which probably explains why I don’t sleep well. As I get sleepier, my mind often wanders to random and sometimes disturbing things. Here is where I my nightly meditations ended up last night.
The female body is so much more aesthetically pleasing than the male body. All soft, gentle curves and shadows that lead to mysterious places. What do men have? Sure, some of us are lucky enough to possess physiques that seem to be chiseled from marble, but on the whole we’re hairy, lumpy things with floppy, dangly bits. The penis is a hideous wyrm. When you really think about sex from the perspective of a penial recipient, the whole ordeal seems to be about ways to hide from male genitalia. “Stick it anywhere so I don’t have to look at it!”
- I haven’t had a lot of time to write or draw over the past several weeks, because all of my free time has been devoted to terraforming my swimming pool from a stinking black bog into a crystal clear island oasis. This process has been complicated by the biblical flooding that is invading Oklahoma at the moment, but I’ve been out there whenever possible, scrubbing, vacuuming, and such. I’m happy to say that my efforts have not been in vain and the pool is almost ready for summer fun times.
- I’ve switched from Evernote to Microsoft OneNote as my organizational method of choice. Why did I switch? I haven’t been happy with how Evernote’s organization works for a while now. Their method of “nesting” notes into clusters doesn’t compare to OneNote’s method of tabbed sections. Reorganization gives me a sense of a modicum of control over my creative life. I’m very aware of the fact that it’s also, largely, an exercise in procrastination. At least I’m self aware that way.